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Engagement shoot at Alexandra Palace north London

Alexandra Palace Engagement Shoot, for 2023 Engagement season!

By Barnet Wedding Photographers, London venues and events, London Wedding Photographers, Wedding VenuesNo Comments

Well, they tell us that now is the traditional time after Christmas and heading through New Year that those of us in the wedding world call “Engagement Season.” So here’s a recent Alexandra Palace engagement shoot landing on the blog.

Alexandra Palace engagement shoot, couple walk through leaves

Apparently now is the time the vast majority of couples pop the big question to each other and then providing the answer is positive (!!!) planning for the big day begins in earnest.

Engaged couple in front of blue doors Alexandra Palace wide shot

M and J live in Buckinghamshire and it’s very near their homes in Bletchley they are getting married, with a wedding reception to follow in Milton Keynes. J is English and M is Brazilian and bizarrely as I (David) found on on the shoot, J and I used to work in the same company many moons ago. Small world πŸ™‚

Couple sat on log Alexandra Palace engagement photo shoot

And that’s one of the great things about engagement shoots: everyone gets to know each other a bit better. It certainly helps some couples relax a little ahead of the big day to find out how friendly and relaxed we are.

Alexandra Palace engagement couple by graffiti

Having said that, it’s only about thirty percent of couples that take up our offer of a complimentary engagement shoot that comes as standard in our Elegance and Platinum Plus packages, both found here: Pricing – Creative London Wedding Photographers Big Day Weddings (bigday-weddings.com)

couple walking together Alexandra Palace engagement shoot

If you’ve seen any of our other engagement shoot blog posts you will know that it is David that pretty much does all of these on his own, unless of course it’s a longer and more involved shoot say in central London with a couple that may have flown in just for the experience. Yes people really do that! A quick look on Google will tell you how happy people are with us πŸ™‚

Couple on steps Alexandra Park and Palace shoot

What’s great about Alexandra Palace engagements shoots, apart from the fact we used to live right next to it, and our children went to school nearby in Muswell Hill, is the variety the building and surrounding park offer.

Forever Yours Alexandra Palace engagement shoot

It has water, woodland, views, gardens, interesting architecture, and plenty of characters wandering around too. The thing is knowing what works visually and what doesn’t, getting people relaxed and understanding light and camera technique to get the best out of an engagement shoot. And on top of that being able to do it with energy, a smile, gentle direction, and guaranteed results every time.

Couple by grafitti Alexandra Palace engagement shoot photo

Things is when it’s your career, when you love what you do, when you always want to create something fresh and engaging: it’s a pleasure.

Couple by tree Alexandra Palace engagement photo shoot

Engagement shoot on steps by Alexandra Palace London

Want to see some more of our engagements shoots including Alexandra Palace? Then take a look at the links below:

Shoreditch Engagement Shoot, inner London photography

Best London Engagement Shoot from Covent Garden to Leadenhall Market

Engagement Shoot at London’s Alexandra Palace in Muswell Hill

Engaged couple in front of blue doors Alexandra Palace

Engagement shoot at Alexandra Palace north London

By David Green

Wedding at The Ivy London bride and groom image

Fitzrovia Chapel Wedding Westminster & reception at The Ivy London

By Barnet Wedding Photographers, London venues and events, London venues and events, London Wedding Photographer, Wedding VenuesNo Comments

We love a Fitzrovia Chapel wedding. One of the best things about photographing in London and the home counties is the sheer variety of venues. We appreciate that, it helps keep us fresh and is a challenge we always relish. For E & R’s special day they chose three iconic spots in central London.

Wedding couple kiss outside The Ivy central London image

The day started with E getting ready at The Dorchester just off Park Lane central London, a venue we have been very happy to work in many times. A very relaxed start there and a chance to get to know mum and dad a little and of course the maid of honour and bridesmaids.

Bride getting makeup The Dorchester Hotel London

Wedding dress hanging The Dorchester Hotel London

Bride in wedding dress The Dorchester Hotel London

A fairly short convoy cab ride away, beating bride and dad to the church, we arrived at the ever amazing Fitzrovia Chapel in Pearson Square.

Groom waits for bride Fitzrovia Chapel wedding Westminster London

Bride arrives at Fitzrovia Chapel Wedding ceremony Westminster London

Fitzrovia Chapel in Westminster for those who haven’t been looks to my eye (David) something that could be in Vatican City Rome, it really is that impressive and golden inside!

Bride arrives with father Fitzrovia Chapel Wedidng London

First look Fitzrovia Chapel Wedding ceremony London

It was built between 1891 – 2 but work with the interiors didn’t fully finish until 1929. Well at least there was something positive about 1929 considering it was the year of the great Wall Street stock market crash and the beginning of the Depression era!

Fitzrovia Chapel Wedding ceremony Westminster London

It’s gothic, it beautiful, you can record songs there, fashion shoots, art exhibitions, performances you name it and of course you can get married too in its vaulted splendour. A real hidden gem in Westminster central London.

First Kiss at Fitzrovia Chapel Wedding London

Photograph there in winter and you have to make an artistic choice, discreet soft flash or purely ambient. Purely ambient is pretty easy though we’ve seen quite a lot of previous wedding coverage there that is very dark and not particularly flattering, so diffused flash became the order of the day and worked very well.

Wedding recessional at Fitzrovia Chapel Westminster London

Bride and groom outside Fitzrovia Chapel Westminster London

Especially love the moment E comes through the arches with Dad, and R’s anticipation moments before. The registrars for the ceremony we knew, they really are a great team in Westminster, and thank you to the helpful staff on hand at Fitzrovia Chapel itself.

Bride and groom hold hands Fitzrovia Chapel Wedding

Afterwards there was a short drinks reception we used as a chance to get ten minutes outside with the newly weds for some shots, and then it was time to make our way to one of London’s most famous and iconic restaurant The Ivy.

Wedding couple walk through Westminster London

What to say about The Ivy. Well we have both photographed and dined there many times. It is probably one of the most famous celebrity frequented restaurants London has. Starting in 1917 as an Italian CafΓ© it morphed over time into a restaurant frequented by some of the most famous actors of the day from Sir Lawrence Olivier, Vivien Leigh, Sir John Gielgud, Noel Coward and many many others in it’s history. It’s in the heart of theatreland, beautifully decorated and you cannot see in from the outside which David thinks is one of it’s biggest assets: privacy.

Wedding at The Ivy London bride and groom image

It’s also a fantastic place for a small to medium sized wedding reception. The first floor (we’ve worked at the top as well) is beautiful with a bar, socializing and dining area.

The Ivy Wedding Reception London Collage

E & R arranged a fantastic three piece jazz band that kept the evening swinging, through another drinks reception, the wedding breakfast, first dance and beyond. It was a special ambience, great staff as well as fantastic guests all combining to make it a very memorable Ivy wedding reception.

Take a look at some related central London wedding days and receptions on the blog below:

Best London Engagement Shoot from Covent Garden to Leadenhall Market

More of our favourite wedding images from in and around London in the past year

London’s best wedding venues that are both iconic and alternative

London Engagement shoot at Southbank and Tower Bridge again

By David Green

Confetti throw St James's church Paddington Wedding

Paddington Wedding Photographer – no bears involved!

By Barnet Wedding Photographers, London venues and events, London Wedding Photographer, Wedding VenuesNo Comments

Every wedding day is memorable for this wedding photographer, it’s just some over time become more memorable than others! As a pretty frequent Paddington wedding photographer, and all those central London areas around, this particular day with Elizabeth and Sean is certainly one that will live long in my mind’s eye.

Bride and groom walk through gardens Paddington wedding

Here’s some of the reasons, firstly apart from fifteen to twenty minutes spent fifty yards away in a small public rose garden the entire wedding day from ceremony though to reception food and drinks cake cutting and first dance everything was contained within the church.

Bride enters St James's church for Paddington wedding ceremony

The venue in question was the magnificent St James’s Church Sussex Gardens in Paddington. Built between 1841 and 1843 it replaced the previous building of St Mary’s of Paddington Green. It’s had many famous people over the years in the congregation and perhaps it’s most famous wedding of the past was Oscar Wilde marrying Constance Lloyd in 1884.

Wedding ceremony St James Paddington

London Paddington wedding ceremony at St James's

It’s constructed in a gothic style and as much as I could I wanted to show the drama of it in my wide shots.

Wedding couple stroll through Paddington London park

I talked extensively with Elizabeth about what the couple wanted for their big day, and the basic brief was that they preferred a low-key unobtrusive style with some gentle direction if needed at any point. Excellent, and that’s why I (David) captured the day on my own rather than as a pair.

Bride and Groom at Abbey Road crossing wedding day

This was a meeting of many cultures and countries and a really interesting mix for me to photograph. The whole vibe was one of love laughter and respect from everyone involved. As a wedding veteran, this time with everyone to me had an almost unique quality that is difficult to put into words.

Wedding couple kiss on steps Paddington London

What was different? Well the wedding breakfast, which was utterly delicious (thank you guys!) was delivered within the church itself and not in an adjoining hall or area. Quite a change to eat sat in a pew! The confetti throw was later in the day. And most special of all for me was cake cutting and a dance in aisle in the centre of the church rather than the sides. I’ll admit that was my idea, as I thought it would make it more memorable for Elizabeth and Sean, and that first dance was so heartfelt and beautiful it will probably be my longest memory of this Paddington wedding day πŸ™‚

First dance in church aisle Paddington wedding London

We found twenty minutes to have a bit of outside fun and shoot some couple shots in the little garden across the road, and a pedestrian crossing and buildings we spotted nearby. A great day, only four hours actually and a really great couple.

THE REVIEW

Big Day Wedding Review October 2022

These two wrote me a lovely review five-star review (a shot is included) but also a really wonderful thank you email which I’m including to show real feedback from one of my cherished couples:

“Dear David,

Please accept my apologies for the delay in responding. We have been away in the Azores (honeymoon) island hopping and checking my emails whilst I am away is something I am notoriously terrible at.

However, what a wonderful gift to return to. Sean and I are both so thrilled with the collection of photographs. I cannot believe how happy we are with them all so thank you so, so much! From the first contact I knew I had made the right choice on photographer. I felt you understood us and our take on a relaxed, low key wedding perfectly. I was immediately at ease talking with you on the phone and as soon as I met you I was instantly relaxed. We can’t believe how you managed to capture so many shots in so many different places seemingly all at the same time! Sean’s Dad even commented ‘where did you find this guy, he is brilliant’. The images are incredible and have far exceeded expectionations. It is such a great mix of guests in the moment looking happy and relaxed but also some amazing shots with your creative direction. Your artistic flair shines through and we are thrilled with everything that you managed to capture. It is a true essence of the day. Thank you for coming by so early and texting me to know you were already there which was very reassuring and the images you got of the guests arriving right through to the cake cutting are brilliant and such a fantastic keepsake of the day. It has brought back the entire day beautifully for us. I normally do not like to have my photograph taken nor am I photogenic but in the nicest possible way I didn’t even notice you were there at all! Our expectations for the photographs across the road in the flower garden and ‘Beatles’ style on the zebra crossing were not high as we didn’t really know how to be and were worried you would get run over by a passing car for most of it but with your direction they have turned out to be so brilliant we are simply thrilled with them. The confetti shots also capture how happy everyone is and they are also fantastic. I could simply list everything as the entire collection is superb.

Thank you, again for capturing the day so magnificently when we only planned a very small, last minute, intimate afternoon that we threw together only a month or two before but with your style it looks like we planned the most exquisite day down to the finest detail. The amount of photos is incredible and they are all truly wonderful. The slide show to music is really something very special to treasure.

Sean insisted on writing on our behalf as I normally leave these things to him so I have additionally pasted his message from both of us below as well.

Sir David

You are an absolute royal super star!! Wow, Wow, Wow! So many great shots, it’s almost overwhelming! How did you jump around seemingly every corner of the church like that?! Some we love the most were when we went across the street to the rose gardens. You talking and joking and just your great personality made us so relaxed and you got so many amazing pictures there. But so many beautiful ones all over. The detail and characters and mood you captured. Impossible for us to pick a top 10 or even 100. And you gave us over 900 pics!

You are a star my friend. Thank you so much for being part of our divine day. We love you.

Sean and Elizabeth

Thank you, again, David.

A great day and captured to perfection.

Elizabeth”

Here’s some more central London Weddings to check out:

Eight Club Wedding in Moorgate and Shoreditch

Winners for London and beyond 2022 in UK’s biggest wedding competition. Thank you!!

All Souls Church Wedding London with plenty of social distancing joy!

Central London Weddings

Shoreditch Engagement Shoot, inner London photography

Paddington wedding reception photo collage

 

Here’s another recent central London wedding:

Fitzrovia Chapel Wedding Westminster & reception at The Ivy London

By David Green

 

Big Day Weddings Hitched Wedding Awards 20200

Winners for London and beyond 2022 in UK’s biggest wedding competition. Thank you!!!

By Barnet Wedding Photographers, London venues and events, London Wedding Photographer, London Wedding PhotographersNo Comments

We are humbled, and beyond delighted to win for London (and our work in the home counties) in the Hitched Wedding Awards 2022. Hitched, and their owners The Knot Worldwide are the biggest global wedding brands out there, and their competition is all down to the people that matter the most, wedding couples themselves. Winners are judged on how happy the couple are with their photographers on a range of criteria, from great imagery to people skills and professionalism and more.

Best nine image 2021 Big Day Weddings collage

In truth we did nothing but what we always do, which is to work our socks off for our brides and grooms and their families, without every letting them see us break into an obvious sweat! There’s no point having all the technical knowledge in the world, and the best equipment money can buy to go with it, if you don’t deliver what the good people who hire you WANT and more. If you can listen, if you can put yourself in other people’s shoes, if you can dream their dreams for the big day, then you are beginning to do what we believe the very best wedding photographers and videographers do.

Big Day Weddings Collage Two of 2021

You can have all the flowery prose, current buzz words in the world in your website and your marketing, but if you don’t look after the people that put their money and faith in you, then you won’t last long. Wedding photography is a great vocation, but it’s a hard one too. Everybody wants to be a photographer, and everybody IS a photographer. But only those that consistently deliver will last, and in our close to fourteen years full-time in this wonderful industry, we can only think of five photographers we know of that are still here today!

Now there ARE a lot of brilliant photographers out there. Absolutely no doubt. You may get lucky, and we wish you all the best with that. There are people we follow ourselves for extra inspiration and ideas, we’re always learning too.

But, if you would like a couple who still deliver, still win, and most of all (and actually we are humble, but we have to shout about ourselves sometimes!) are “people” people who listen, then get in touch, talk to us about your exciting plans, and at the very least get some friendly no obligation advice about your wedding day.

And truly, thank you for all the brilliant couples we worked with in the last year that voted for us, without us even asking! We would be nothing without you, that’s for sure πŸ™‚

David and Joanna

Big Day Weddings Hitched Wedding Awards 20200

Google review Claridges Big Day Weddings

Another 5 star review from a very recent Claridges wedding

By Barnet Wedding Photographers, London venues and events, London Wedding Photographers, Wedding VenuesNo Comments

It’s always great to return to the historic and iconic London luxury hotel Claridges for a wedding day. It’s also fantastic to receive this kind of five star review on Google afterwards.

Michele and Stephen’s Christmas wedding held in the French Salon and dining room for sixty guests was a joyous emotional coming together of many who had not seen each other much, if at all since the pandemic, which made it extra special.

Here’s the review copied and pasted from Google and our reply:

“I cannot recommend David & Joanna enough. They were so brilliant on, before and after my wedding. Not only are they so professional, they are just the nicest people too. I could not have chosen better people to mix with my friends and family, they felt like they belonged. Their photos are outstanding and everyone who has seen them have been so complimentary. You will not go wrong with Big Day Weddings.”

“Michele thank you so much! We had a lovely time documenting your wonderful wedding at Claridges. It was fantastic to meet your friends and family, and we would like to wish you both the very best for the future. David and Joanna :-)”

To see more of our reviews on Google click the link:Β Google reviews for Big Day Weddings

By David Green