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What are David and Joanna’s approaches and attitudes to wedding photography?

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What are David and Joanna's approaches and attitudes to wedding photography? London Wedding Photographers

Recently we were nominated by one of our lovely couples for The Wedding Industry Awards, which are the biggest and most comprehensive in the UK, that led to many more voting for us, and nicely we have been chosen as one of the finalists for later in the year.

Below is the TWIA questionnaire we filled out after our nomination. It was an excellent exercise to answer their well thought out questions and we thought it would be a good idea for prospective and past wedding couples to read about our approach and philosophy for what we do and love.

Here’s our answers in full:

What Is Your Company ethos?

Very simply, as a couple we wanted the best for OUR special day, so we feel it is only fair that we give our very best for YOUR special day. The fact that we love what we do is just a bonus!

What makes you different from your competitors?

We are a couple who work on the basis of striving to give as good or better than we had on our special day. It’s only fair and we love it! We believe we have above average dramatic flair. We analyse every wedding to see where we have done well, and where we could improve, and this process has never stopped for us. It’s our definition of photographer’s ‘integrity’.

Choosing only one, what is the most valuable aspect of the service you offer to wedding clients?

Truly listening to people. We know that we can do a great job for people, but by listening to what they value the most, it allows us not just to meet all their expectations of us, but to actively exceed them.

What was the most valuable thing you learned in your last year of business?

The importance of remaining open minded. You can never know everything, no matter how experienced you are. It’s a joy to keep learning and pushing yourself. Learning from someone who has only just began their photography journey as well as the masters. If you are open minded you can continue to absorb, learn and grow. Anything less is probably naive.

How do you manage the client journey from booking to the wedding day?

Communication is key. So from the minute someone books with us we keep in regular contact, even if it’s just to touch base. This allows us to build a relationship over time and really get a sense of what makes that couple tick and what they value. All our collections include a pre wedding shoot, so a proven great way to further develop that relationship and get an ever clearer picture of our combined approach for the wedding day. A week and a half beforehand we have either a face to face meeting again or a Skype call to go through the timeline and the plan one last time in detail. On the day itself we always arrive a little earlier than expected so that we have a an extra chance of having everyone super relaxed and happy before we start shooting.

What are David and Joanna's approaches and attitudes to wedding photography? London Wedding Photographers

Describe your approach to the wedding itself. What, when, how and why do you do what you do when shooting a wedding?

Our approach starts with the mind set of: “what can I do or not do, to make the images the best we can create on the day” that means where to ‘step back’ and where to gently ‘step in’ to direct a situation.

The day starts with arriving earlier than planned to look at the light in and around the venue, because this will affect our photographic choices later. Next, looking for establishing shots and any other details we can get earlier rather than later, so our focus can primarily be on people and the chemistry between them.

Next we literally breath in the atmosphere of who and where we are to begin our coverage. We introduce ourselves according to the personalities and people we are photographing and then start to shoot.

We have a mental checklist of must have shots and requests as a framework to give structure, but are constantly looking for those unstructured magic moments too, and opportunities to create something a little different from the usual.

Again knowing when to step back and observe, or gently step in is critical.

If it’s a wedding with both of us, we are looking to maximise our workload and time management. So we will take up different vantage points for both ceremony, drinks reception, wedding breakfast, speeches and evening celebrations.

If David is doing some couple portraits then generally Joanna will be roaming the drinks reception, photographing details and wedding breakfast rooms etc. David will pitch in with this and then move to photograph any family and friends groups a couple have requested.

Because we have planned extensively beforehand we can concentrate on being ‘in the zone’ for our couple and their guests.

We often joke between ourselves that a wedding day is the only time we are ever truly single minded. We literally cannot think about anything else and we believe that shows in what we ultimately produce.

Wasn’t sure how much detail to go into on this question!

What is the single most important thing that is required to be an excellent wedding photographer?

Adaptability. Looking at that it is actually two words, adapt and ability. Adapt to the light, the situation, the people and personalities around you, the weather and opportunities that arise. Put that with ability and it becomes a win win combination.

Describe your style and approach to being a wedding photographer.

We would describe it as creative documentary. That means ‘taking’ as well as ‘making’ the most memorable shots possible. During the day it means total concentration to be ‘in the zone’ so that no opportunity or angle is missed in the purely documentary side of coverage. It also means if the chance arises “fighting for the shot”, which is simply if you see a chance for something dramatic or different to make that couples memories even more special, then go for it. But of course only if the couple or guests are happy and it fits their personalities!

How Many Weddings Do You Supply Each Calendar Year On Average?

35

How many clients whose weddings you photographed between 24.10.17 and 09.10.18 have seen their finished product (eg: prints or album included in their package or ordered after their wedding)?

All of them

You can also find out more about us on the website here: David and Joanna

 

 

 

Wedding couple laugh in gardens of Hanbury Manor

Another lovely ‘Thank you’ card through the post. Well, thank you!

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It was great to receive this ‘thank you’ card through the post from Yui and Mark today. These guys were married at Hanbury Manor earlier in the year, and they also nominated us for The Wedding Industry Awards. It’s the first competition we have ever really entered, so fingers crossed and thank you to you two for putting us forward.

Another lovely 'Thank you' card through the post. Well, thank you! London Wedding PhotographersHere’s a link to their wedding day in April: Hanbury Manor Wedding Photographers

And their Google Review of us: Another Big Day Weddings 5 star review for David and Joanna, thank you!!!

Here’s what these guys had to say:

“Dear David and Joanna,

We Hope this finds you well! It’s hard to believe that six months have passed since our wedding at Hanbury Manor, and this card is long overdue! The past months have been busy, but we have had time to reflect on our wedding and truly appreciate just how beautiful everything was! Big Day Weddings really made a difference to our day…both of you are brilliant at what you do and you managed to capture the occasion beautifully from the “record” shots down to the details, the candid shots, groups, guests, US, and everything in between! You handled our guests so well and your people skills were out of this world! Thanks again for a fantastic job done and for being part of our day! You have our highest recommendation!!

Mark and Yui Redford”

 

 

Tanner warehouse wedding at the Shard photo

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall

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We knew from day one that Kristine and Oliver’s wedding day would be fabulous from beginning to end. Why? Because they are Norwegian, and Norwegian people know how to enjoy themselves big time!

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Actually in repeated survey’s of the happiest nationalities in the world, Norway is always close to the top. First hand, we understand why.

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Truth be told though these guys were open minded to trying different things photography wise, and they also had plenty of their own ideas too.

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Naturally we are going to document the day with quality reportage, but we relish to the chance to “make” photos as well as “take” photos. That’s a little bit simplistic to say “take” photos because there is so much to consider: light, angle, technical settings, emotion, action etc but we hope you get the essence of what we mean.

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding PhotographersTanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Ha ha, you are probably just looking at the pictures and not reading this, and who could blame you!

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

This was a day of many locations and it started in the morning at the London Courthouse Hotel. This place is a brilliant conversion of Old Street Magistrates Court and police station. Both K and O stayed here separately the night before, so morning time we were able to juggle between the two.

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

I loved photographing the boys on some of the original police cells they have retained in the bar area, including Ronnie Krays where he has held for “demanding money with menace.”

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Oliver used to a professional footballer, so it was fitting that we ran into West Ham’s coaching staff and current manager Manuel Pellegrini on the main staircase. I swear every time they lose he gains another wrinkle…

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Next if was time to take a cab ride to our wedding ceremony venue the lovely Stoke Newington Town Hall. I particularly enjoyed this ride, not just chit chatting with the boys but boring everyone by pointing out where we used to live in Islington and my first studio business on Essex Road.

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Anyway, what a great wedding ceremony venue at Stoke Newington Town Hall. One of the groomsman performed mid way through a live rendition of  Elvis Presley’s iconic song ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love.’  Always loved this song, and I actually had to fight back the tears myself. As your one of the photographers at a wedding it’s never a great idea to cry into your viewfinder as it makes everything blurry afterwards!

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

After confetti throwing round the front of the town hall we went for a wander with the newly weds around Clissold Park. Boy oh boy I remember pushing our kids prams around there a few times!

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Now I’m not being stereotypical when I say that Norwegian people enjoy a drink, and why not? That meant before everyone got on to a specially commissioned London Routemaster bus we had an hour or so’s pit stop at the Irish pub across the road from the ceremony venue.

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

All refreshed, the bus toured around central London just in time for the heavens to open and it torrentially rained for a while. It didn’t last long though, and later I (David) left the bus near St Pauls Cathedral and took a walk with the couple to shoot some portraits around there and the Southbank.

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Thanks to Uber we got back in time for the wedding reception at Tanner Warehouse in Bermondsey, or to be more precise 50 Bermondsey Street. This is a great wedding venue with fantastic staff. I love the fact that it started life as a chocolate factory too, as my first ever job was working in a handmade chocolate shop and then as a student I did part-time shifts making Rolo’s at Rowntrees chocolate factory. Mmmmm…..

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

At Tanner Warehouse its was food, drinks, socialising and of course partying. We enjoyed the speeches, even the ones we didn’t understand in Norwegian. After cake cutting and first dance our talented groomsman from the Stoke Newington Town Hall ceremony took to the microphone and guitar again to get the wedding party boogeying.

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

We thank Kristine and Oliver for their open mindedness with their wedding photography and their fantastic hospitality to us as well.

Tanner Warehouse Wedding Photography, with a ceremony at Stoke Newington Town Hall London Wedding Photographers

I’ve looked online at Bergen in Norway where they live and I’ve put it on my bucket list to visit soon. Kristine and Oliver, you have been warned…

By David Green.

September google review for Big Day Weddings photographers

Another Big Day Weddings 5 star review for David and Joanna – thank you!!!

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We have just received another wonderful 5 star review on Google from Mark and Yui. These guys were married at the fabulous Hanbury Manor in Hertfordshire and it was a day that will live long in the memory. Thank you so much, it’s really appreciated.

Another Big Day Weddings 5 star review for David and Joanna - thank you!!! London Wedding Photographers

Here’s the actual text:

“Big Day Weddings was hands down one of the best choices we made when it came to suppliers for our wedding. We’d done a lot of research and searched high and low – both online and offline – for photographers whose work we liked and that we knew we would feel comfortable working with. It was quite by accident that we discovered David and Joanna, and oh boy did they fit the bill! We actually came across them via a highly complimentary online review from a couple whose wedding they’d shot, and who had also used the videographers that we ended up using. We decided to contact Big Day Weddings as we thought it would be a nice idea to have a team of photographers and videographers who’d worked together before. They’d also gotten great feedback from previous clients, their prices were reasonable and they offered a range of affordable packages that fit what we were looking for. Our decision was cemented the moment we got on the phone and spoke to David. He’s genuinely friendly and approachable and put us at ease immediately. He listened to our preferences, offered suggestions, and, as the big day approached, was happy to run through the programme to make sure everything would go smoothly. On our wedding day, both David and Joanna were absolutely wonderful, dealing with our guests, the venue staff, bridal party nerves, and everything in between, like complete pros. As for the wedding photos, they turned out BRILLIANTLY, and turnaround time was pretty quick. We were so impressed with the many beautiful images of us, our families, the guests, the venue, and all the key moments. In addition, David and Joanna had managed to capture many other little things that made up the day such as decor features, wedding memorabilia, and other details that so many people miss. As photographers, they are are highly skilled, talented, and experienced, but what sets them apart has to be their personalities and people skills….they are so amiable, funny, and fantastic to work with! Nervous in front of the camera, or not sure what to do? Have a difficult guest or two who hates having their picture taken? Then you NEED someone like David to shoot your wedding! He really knows what to say and do at the right moment, and how to bring out the best in people so that you will get the best shots possible. The shots they captured will serve as wonderful reminders of one of the best days of our lives. Big Day Weddings is the BEST: David and Joanna are absolute gems….a fab team, and truly one of a kind. Really chuffed to have worked with them….they have our highest recommendation!”

Check out Yui and Mark’s wedding here: Hanbury Manor Wedding Photographers

And their engagement shoot on London’s Southbank here: London Engagement shoot at Southbank and Tower Bridge…again

By David Green