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Category Archives: Thoughts and Rambles

Wedding in Essex - bride and groom at sunset

 

Sadly, I have a song by the Spice Girls playing in my head whilst writing this – I think it’s called “When Two become One” (which really was one of their weaker efforts in my opinion!) and bears only a passing resemblance to the subject of today’s blog post which actually has nothing to do with Britpop girl bands but is about whether two wedding photographers are better than one!

 

So are two wedding photographers better than one?

 

Well, of course – it depends!

 

First of all the pros:

More angles: Inevitably, and undeniably you are more likely to get more pictures from a wider variety of angles from from two photographers rather than one. It’s physically impossible for one photographer to be in two places at once and having two makes it much more possible to have pictures of both the bride and groom getting ready in different locations for example.

Wider coverage: With two photographers you are also more likely to get a more balanced and wider coverage. By that I mean that whilst one photographer might be photographing the family groups the other can still be photographing guests.  Similarly, one may spend time photographing the tables and details freeing up more time for the other to concentrate of candid shots of you and your guests etc.

Safety in numbers: On a more practical level the chances of an important moment being captured are higher with two photographers than one and there is far less chance of two being ill on the day than one. There will be more cameras at your wedding so less chance of anything going wrong as well.

 

and the cons:

Paparazzi parade: Your wedding could start to feel like a photo shoot with two photographers there.

Lack of consistency: You might not get a consistent style of coverage. All photographers photograph in a slightly different way and you could possibly find that you get two slightly different looking styles. This could be refreshing and good – or maybe not??

Costings: Finally think about this from a business point of view. Two photographers means two wages. Therefore, two photographers should be considerably more expensive – if not, where are corners being cut or who is it that’s happy to photograph a wedding with all of the associated planning and preparation for a cut price fee? Often second photographers are considerably less experienced and are sometimes little more than bag carriers added onto your photography package as an attractive sounding bauble. That does sound harsh and a majority are fantastic and do a great job but the worst case scenario often does happen.
 
Rectory farm Cambridge. Wedding preparations.
 
From my own point of view I have always shot alone. I’m absolutely committed to documenting your wedding in as unobtrusive and as least invasive way as possible and in my view having two photographers there just makes that less possible. I would also be very concerned about consistency as I have developed a style and an approach that’s very personal to me and has taken years of work to get right! I think it would be very hard to have someone else there who would photograph in the same way and would seamlessly fit in with my style. It’s more than possible with planning and foresight to ensure that one photographer is in the right place at the right time to photograph everything. Personally I really don’t always think that bigger is better and my personal view in terms of wedding photography is that a bespoke, personal approach is much better.

 

That’s not to say that I’m completely right though – it really depends on your own priorities, expectations and desires. Needless to say one very good wedding photographer can do a much better job than two OK ones. Similarly two very good wedding photographers working together can do as good a job, or depending on your take on it, a better job than one very good wedding photographer although the result and experience will be very different. Horses for courses!

 

If you are looking for one very good wedding photographer who shoots alone because he believes it’s the right thing to do and not just because he’s got no mates to join him then

 

GET IN TOUCH WITH ME – I’d love to hear from you!

 

 

Speeches at a marquee wedding near cambridge

 

OMG it’s 2016 and you’ve still got your wedding to plan!

Everyone tells you that you should have got it all in the bag months ago but, well, life gets in the way and trawling wedding websites gets a bit much sometimes. There really are much more exciting things to do like getting on with real life and last year at least it always seemed as though the big day was ages away as it was,well… next year!

Well, it is next year now and, gulp, D day is loomimg! So, if you’re miles behind with your planning and your chilled out wedding vibe is in real danger of being rudely broken what can you realistically do to help things along?

Ask for help!

Get everyone involved and delegate! It’s very possible that you’ve got an extremely keen friend who absolutely adores all this wedding stuff darling and would be only too delighted to take as much of the planning, poring and perusing off your hands as you would like. If that is the case you only need to maintain over all control and your friend may well be thrilled to do all the leg work! Job done! At the very least it should be possible to assign individual tasks to different people – one to be in charge of flowers, one to sort out transport etc. They can find out the facts, present you with the information and you can then make the final choice. This is immensely time saving for you, great for team morale and is much more common than you would think. I frequently get enquiries from the bride’s Mum, bride’s best friend, best man etc on behalf of the couple.

First things first

You actually only need your dearly beloved, some sort of venue, an officient and a couple of witnesses. Start small by getting these vital things in place and then work upwards. I’m assuming you have already done the hard part and found a fiancee – trust me it gets easier from here onwards! Also, don’t be restricted as to the type of venue you could have – keep it simple – I’ve photographed great weddings in orchards, back yards, woodland and barns. You really don’t have to keep to traditions – try not to become stressed out by your perception of other people’s expectations and plan a day that suits you. In many ways the simpler and more personal the better.

Bride and groom at a wedding ceremony in Cambridge

 

Hire a wedding planner

Or at least get your venue to do more than you initially planned for them to do – if you really are stretched for time at this point thenit might well be worth contacting your venue (if appropriate!) and asking if they an become more involved than you originally planned for. They may well be able to help with the little details and save you a large amount of time. They will also be able to recommend suppliers tat could well take you ages o find your self. Similarly hiring a wedding planner to take on some or part of the planning can be a huge relief. You will be able to discuss what you want and leave them to is to source and supply. Often they are able to negotiate discounts and save you a hufe amount of time and stress whivh can go a long way to compensating for the extra cost involved in hiring them.

Don’t look at wedding blogs

…on Facebook or in wedding magazines. Trust me the DIY detail wedding porn that these publications produce can seriously stress you out. Looking at this sort of thing gives you wedding envy, makes you feel inadequate and only reminds you of all of the stuf that you think yu might have forgotten. Remember plan a day that suites you – the simpler and more personal the better!

Make a timeplan

There’s nothing worse than flailing around in disorganised mayhem with a big deadline looming! Work backwards from the wedding day and make a monthly and weekly plan of what needs to be done. Tick things off as you have done them and review the plan, amending as necessary on a weekly basis. It’s surprising how calming planning can be, we all find having good intentions soothing and reassuring – the most important thing is to make sure that you actually carry them out …..so…..GET ON WITH IT!

 

If you’re a bit of a slacker but are looking for a wedding photographer who is super organised, experienced, plans thoroughly beforehand but will probably fit in really well with your laid back and rather slack attitude then EMAIL/PHONE/TEXT ME – I’d love to hear more about your wedding!

Bride throwing her bouquet at the Thatch Barn near Yelling

 

As weird wedding traditions go, throwing the bouquet has to be one of the strangest! Just think about it for a moment, you’re expected to throw possibly the most expensive bunch of flowers you have ever bought over your head at all of your friends who, dressed in their finery, will probably scramble over it in a degenerate rugby scrum. The winner is the one who will marry next as though getting married is the be all and end all of everything and worth fighting over a few flowers for!

 

It’s worth mentioning at this point that I’ve witnessed stiletto injuries, nail injuries, elbow in eye injuries, torn silk, intertwined handbags and crying – all in the name of a bit of bouquet chucking fun! Also, if you’re inviting any single PE teachers to your wedding my best advice would be to simply not risk doing a bouquet chuck at all. They are far too competitive and there will be tears!

 

Apart from my misgivings above, flinging your floristry can be great fun and make a great picture so, where on earth did this crazy idea come from?

 

Wedding guests catching the bouquet

 

Well, it turns out that it’s from Medieval England (Mmmm, what a surprise!) and the Medieval belief that a woman could only be happy if she was married and had children! Basically in Medieval times, the wedding dress was considered to be a good luck charm or a sort of fertility symbol. Brides didn’t expect to wear the dress again so, at the end of the wedding, all her miserable unmarried and desperate friends would literally chase her around and rip bits off the dress to keep as souvenirs. The dress would be left in tatters and the bride exhausted!

 

As time passed wedding dresses became more expensive and were often kept or passed on so other things were thrown to the baying throng as a distraction from shredding the dress and to quench their insatiable Medieval thirst for fertility charms! Garters were popular although were often removed from the bride by impatient guests who couldn’t mind their Medieval manners and eventually the bouquet, as it is perishable and relatively easy to throw, took over.

 

So, that’s the history – what’s the deal today? I guess maybe about 25% of the weddings I photograph have a throwing the bouquet moment. Traditionally, harking back to the dress ripping, the bouquet is thrown right at the end of the reception just before the bride leaves but most brides do it earlier in the evening now. It can be great fun, and much nicer than having your dress ripped off you (if your guests are that way inclined!) but, on the other hand it is a bit archaic and ridiculous! It’s really horses for courses and depends how many singles will be there and also how competitive/likely to hurt each other they are!

 

Wedding guests and the bouquet throw

 

A few practicalities:

Some florists will provide a throwing bouquet which will be smaller, lighter and stronger. Have a quick think about where and when you will do it and who you want to be involved. You will need a fair bit of space, some height (if it’s indoors) and if it’s outdoors don’t try to do it in the dark! You might also want to get your band/DJ to announce it and to invite the singles or anyone who cares to join in to take their places.

 

Finally, be warned that, if your DJ announces the bouquet throw, they will possibly fall into default pre programmed DJ cheese mode and start playing that wretched Beyonce “All the Single Ladies” track. Now I don’t have anything against Beyonce but the inevitability of it being played and it’s overpowering Gorgonzola factor really is too much for me personally. You may well love it and that’s fine by me, I will grin and bear it, be completely non judgemental and concentrate my hardest on getting a great picture for you!!

 

If you’re planning on slinging an expensive bunch of blooms at your poor inebriated friends to make sure that they don’t chase after you to rip your dress off you then GET IN TOUCH – I’d love to take some pictures of it!

 

 

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