hertfordshire

Bridal Preparations - St. Michael le Belfrey, York by Simon Cardwell

One thing I like about the bridal preparations is the trust you can build with your subjects. I will have met the bride & groom beforehand but usually the rest of the guests & family members I meet for the first time on the day.

Therefore arriving a few hours early & growing into the day allows you to build up their trust. What I am looking for is for them to forget about me & not notice the camera, this is something I have honed & got better at over the years.

I am trying to get to those unguarded & honest moments, & you can’t do that if the subject doesn’t trust you.

York Wedding Photographer
York Wedding Photography
Hertfordshire Wedding Photographer
Hertfordshire Wedding Photographer

This wedding took in the St. Michael le Belfrey in York, next door to York Minster. But today I am going to focus exclusively on the bridal preparations before the ceremony.

London Wedding Photographer

Parents are a key part of any wedding day & I always look for interaction between them & the couple:

Simon Cardwell Wedding Photography
Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire

Once I have been there a while I start to blend in & no one even notices I am there:

Aldwark Manor York Wedding Photography
Aldwark Manor York Wedding Photography
Merchant Taylor's Hall York Wedding

I usually leave the room while the dresses go on & then come back in:

Bridesmaids getting ready in York
Aldwark Manor York Wedding Photography
Wedding Photographer Buckinghamshire

While I work mostly in a documentary fashion with minimal posing, I always try to take a handful of posed photographs.

A simple posed picture will be well received by relatives & friends, & is quick & easy to do.

This is always a good time to grab a few, when everyone is ready before leaving for the ceremony:

London Wedding Photographer
The Parsonage York

Are you getting married in York? Or somewhere else? Please have a look at my gallery today to view more of my work.

Contemporary Wedding Photography - A Different Group Photograph by Simon Cardwell

You know how you often see the same group photos at weddings? You've seen them, staged photos with family & friends. I have several ways of trying to lighten up these sorts of photos, but it can get a little tricky sometimes. 

If you have read my blog before, you will know my style of work is largely unrehearsed & natural, however the posed group photos are an expected part of most wedding days. I always encourage the bridge & groom to take as many group photographs as they wish, even if they aren't bothered about them, family members almost always will be. 

At a recent wedding at Preston Park Museum I decided to try something completely different, this backdrop was just begging to be included & I decided to set up a seated group photograph outside:

wedding group photo

It was a small wedding so this was the entire wedding party (they had a larger gathering planned for the evening). 

How do you think it came out? Would you like to try a photo like this at your wedding? 

Preston Park weddings

Please contact me today to discuss your wedding photography. 

Photographing Children 2 - The Quality Hotel, Boldon by Simon Cardwell

Following on from a recent blog about photographing children, I thought I would share another selection of photographs of kids from a wedding at the Quality Hotel, Boldon. 

Quality Hotel Boldon
Wedding Photographer Hitchin Priory Hertfordshire

It's nice when a sequence of photos naturally develops:

Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Quality Hotel, Boldon

My style is to stand off & observe what is happening around me, without interfering or trying to interact with people directly. I find this approach can give you an unguarded moment that would never happen in front of a camera otherwise: 

Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire

Selfies & people taking photos on their phones & cameras has become so prevalent, there is no point trying to discourage or stop it. I encourage it, happy guests make for happy photos: 

Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Simon Cardwell photography
Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Simon Cardwell wedding photographer
Wedding Photographer Buckinghamshire
Wedding Photographer Buckinghamshire
Wedding Photographer Buckinghamshire
Simon Cardwell weddings
Wedding Photographer Buckinghamshire
Wedding Photographer Buckinghamshire
Wedding Photographer Essex
Wedding Photographer Essex
pirate fancy dress
Wedding Photographer Essex
piggy back

The Groom - wedding photography at Hatfield House, Hertfordshire by Simon Cardwell

A wedding often centres around the bride, so today I thought it would be different to post photos of the groom only. 

The grooms preparations are usually overshadowed by the bride getting ready, but on this occasion I got to capture this part of the day: 

Hatfield House Weddings
Hatfield House Weddings
Hatfield House Hertfordshire
Hatfield House Hertfordshire
wedding photographer Essex
wedding photographer Essex
wedding photographer Bucks
wedding photographer Bucks

In the right place at the right time during the ceremony: 

Simon Cardwell photographer
wedding photographer Hertfordshire
wedding photographer Hertfordshire
Wedding Photography London
wedding photographer Hertfordshire

Wedding Photography at Bede Tower, Sunderland by Simon Cardwell

Here are some photos from a wedding at Bede Tower in Sunderland (my hometown). 

I am just showing the photographs of the getting ready & ceremony on this post, as I feel like there are sometimes too many images in each post to look at properly, so the others will follow later in the week. 

I hope you like them: 

Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Wedding Photographer St Albans
Wedding Photographer Hitchin
Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Wedding Photographer Stevenage
Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Simon Cardwell Photographer
Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Central London weddings
Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Wedding Photographer Essex
Wedding Photographer Kent

You can contact me here if you wish to discuss your wedding photography. 

Photographing Children - a key part of any wedding or event by Simon Cardwell

There are children at most weddings I photograph, as such they are a key part of any wedding. The bride & groom will certainly want photographs of their own children or any relatives or close friends children, so I think it is important to always make sure I get plenty of pictures of kids at any wedding. 

Here are some from a wedding I shot a few months ago: 

Wedding Photographer Hertfordshire
Wedding Photographer Essex
Ashridge House weddings
Ashridge House Hertfordshire
Hitchin Priory
Wedding Photographer Stevenage
Hanbury Manor Hertfordshire
Hanbury Manor wedding
Hunton Park Hertfordshire
Hunton Park weddings
Simon Cardwell photographer
Shendish Manor Hertfordshire

Please contact me today to discuss your wedding photography. As usual you can see more of my work here

Photographing a Wedding Evening Reception by Simon Cardwell

It's not often I stay to photograph the evening reception of a wedding, I typically leave not long after the first dance. So this was a rare opportunity to get some different photographs to what I usually come away with.

I adopt the same approach to an evening reception as I do to the rest of the wedding, I stand off & let people behave naturally & get the photographs that way, I very rarely pose anyone throughout the day. 

Wedding Photographer Buckinghamshire
Simon Cardwell Weddings
Hitchin Priory weddings

Occasionally a posed photograph comes together naturally, and they always look a lot better than had I try to awkwardly interact & pose the picture myself: 

The Waterside Wedding Venue Hertfordshire
Stevenage Wedding Photographer

People often let their guard down on the evening (usually in part because the photographer has left): 

Stevenage Wedding Photographer
Ware Priory wedding photography

At this wedding I was there until the end of the evening reception, and a nice sequence of photographs came together for that moment: 

Essex Wedding Photographer
Simon Cardwell Photographer
Stanstead Bury Hertfordshire
Sopwell House Hertfordshire
Sopwell House Hertfordshire

You can view more of my work here & please contact me today if you wish to discuss your wedding photography. 

Selfies, SLR's, Smartphones, iPads, Compacts - what is a wedding photographer to do... by Simon Cardwell

Everyone has a camera nowadays. With smartphones, iPads, SLRs, point & shoots & everything else in between it's no use pretending otherwise, I will never be the only person photographing on a wedding day. 

Instead of fighting it or making matters difficult, I embrace it completely. Getting on with the guests on the day is a key part of working as a wedding photographer, over the years I have seen some very good photographers struggle to take photos at a wedding (some make the mistake of thinking it is easy) & conversely I've seen a few pretty poor photographers who consistently got work, partly on account of their personality & etiquette on the day. 

It's a huge part of the chemistry you need to get good wedding photographs, my advice is always to book a photographer you like, that you get on with & that you can see fitting in on the day.  


I encourage selfies & any other forms of photography people enjoy:

North Mimms Park photography
North Mimms Park photos

For this photograph I deliberately invited each of the bridesmaids (who already had their cameras & phones at the ready) to join me to make a unique picture:

Beales Hotel wedding photos

In my years of photographing weddings, I can honestly say I have only ever encountered a small handful of genuinely rude guests who got in my way in order to get their own pictures.

This is sometimes done by accident although there are exceptions (one incident involved a best man who turned up with more camera gear than me, & tried to take over the photography aspect of the day, much to the bride's chagrin). My rule is when I am attending a wedding as a guest, I don't carry a camera other than the one on my phone, it is unfair to whoever is working that day. 

This group really did love a selfie: 

Beales Hotel weddings
hitching priory photos
Hatfield House Hertfordshire

I try & steal as many photographs as I can throughout the day & if a camera gets in the way, I just try & make it part of the composition of the picture: 

Micklefield Hall Hertfordshire

It brings an interactive element to photography & allows me to engage positively with wedding guests, and it can make for some unique photographs: 

Lodge Farm House Hertfordshire

If you would like to ask me anything about this post or check if I am free for your wedding date, please contact me today

Wedding Photography at Durham Registry Office & The Black Horse Inn, Spennymoor by Simon Cardwell

On this occasion the couple had decided to have a registry office ceremony, followed by a wedding breakfast in a pub close to their house, & then an evening reception in a local club in Spennymoor. The bride & groom are regulars in both, so I liked that personal touch to this wedding. 

Brides & Grooms I speak to often feel obligated to do certain things on their wedding day, the advice I always give them is to make your wedding day exactly what you want it to be. Do what you want to do, & don't let any bossy relatives talk you into changing what you want from the day. If you can't dance, you don't have to have a first dance. If you have a fear of public speaking, you don't have to make a speech.

The best weddings I have attended have always had a personal touch that allowed you to see the character of the bride & groom. 

 

When I first arrive at a wedding, if the bride is not ready for me to start photographing, I often end up interacting & photographing children, who are usually already ready. My style of photography is to observe people & to photograph them without posing them:

Durham wedding photographer

but when a post happens naturally it always ends up a far better photograph than it would be had I set it up: 

county Durham wedding
simon cardwell photographer

Burloes Hall Hertfordshire
essex wedding photographer
Hunton Park Hertfordshire
Buckinghamshire wedding photographer
essex weddings

another unplanned posed picture makes for a great photo of the groom & his best man: 

groom and best man

when it rains at a wedding it usually provides me with a couple of memorable pictures, this was no exception & these are some of my favourites from the day: 

durham wedding photographer
Hunton Park Hertfordshire

This was a family oriented wedding, and as is often the case the couple did not want to pose for too many pictures, so I photographed as many guests & tried to capture as many moments as I could throughout the day:

West Lodge Park Hotel weddings
West Lodge Park Hotel Hertfordshire
London wedding photographer
simon cardwell photographer

Sometimes a run of images comes together that will make a nice series to give to the couple:

Rothamsted Manor Hertfordshire
Rothamsted Manor weddings
Micklefield Hall Hertfordshire

wedding photography Micklefield Hall
Needham House wedding photos
Needham House Hertfordshire
Shendish Manor Hertfordshire

If you are engaged or have a wedding coming up & think I may be suitable to capture your day, please contact me today

The National Wedding Show - Manchester Central (G Mex) by Simon Cardwell

Tomorrow I will be exhibiting at the National Wedding Show at Manchester Central (G Mex). It is the largest wedding event in the north of England & you can find any kind of wedding supplier imaginable. 

I will be on Stand C101 so come & see me if you plan to attend. My stand will feature a range of sample albums & books & there is no better way to get a feel for a wedding photographer than meeting them in person (more on that on the blog next week). 

bride with umbrella rain

You can find more of my work here


Wedding Photography: Photographing Children by Simon Cardwell

The Grove Hotel Hertfordshire

Photographing children is a big part of many weddings, & it's something I've worked on over the years. 

There are several approaches to doing this, I choose to interact as little as possible & photograph as an observer, it allows you access to those unguarded moments you may miss otherwise: 

essex wedding photography

Observing people interacting with each other should almost always provide ample content for your photographs. 

The Grove Hotel Hertfordshire

And you get the most natural & lasting photographs possible this way: 

Micklefield Hall Hertfordshire wedding
Micklefield Hall wedding photos
Simon Cardwell photographer

You can see more of my photographs here

Solberge Hall Wedding Photography by Simon Cardwell

Here are some photographs from a wedding at Solberge Hall, near Northallerton. 

I started at the bride's parents house as I usually do: 

Solberge Hall North Yorkshire

The ceremony then took place at a church in Darlington (round the corner from where I grew up as it turned out):

Solberge Hall wedding photography
Simon Cardwell wedding photography
Solberge Hall North Yorkshire
Darlington wedding photographer
Solberge Hall North Yorkshire
Solberge Hall wedding
Solberge Hall North Yorkshire

Everything after that was at Solberge Hall, which is near Northallerton. This was my first time at the venue, but I was very impressed with it:

Solberge Hall weddings
Solberge Hall North Yorkshire
darlington wedding photographer
north yorkshire wedding photographer
Solberge Hall North Yorkshire
weddings Solberge Hall
Solberge Hall North Yorkshire

I had a few friends attending this wedding so I stayed for the entire evening reception. 

Usually I leave shortly after the first dance, so it was good to get some different photographs as the party got going: 

Solberge Hall wedding
simon cardwell wedding photography
Solberge Hall North Yorkshire
Solberge Hall North Yorkshire
North Yorkshire weddings
Solberge Hall North Yorkshire
Solberge Hall wedding
drunk bride and groom