Over the past few years years we have photographed a tremendous amount of weddings and engagement shoots in central London and beyond. One of our most frequent enquiries is from couples whose actual home is China but would like a particularly London flavour to their engagement memories. Hong Kong or mainland China may be the ultimate destination for their wedding day, but they are very happy to fly over to the capital for a few days to meet us and have their shoot. Right now it is so popular in certain inner London destinations that it’s not unusual for us to encounter three or four similar shoots going on at the same time and that is just on a week day!
Now sometimes the Chinese couples that we work with are also getting married here in London, as was the case with this recent shoot: Engagement Shoot at London’s Alexandra Palace in Muswell Hill and it may be that they are also living and working in the capital, either way I’ve managed to learn a few Chinese words and phrases along the way.
It’s not strictly necessary though because although Mandarin and Cantonese are notoriously difficult languages to learn and master, the lovely Chinese engagement couples that we deal with have generally fantastic English language skills. Better than some of the natives!
Where do we go? Well it’s often the busiest but most iconic tourist spots like Tower Bridge, the Southbank, Westminster, Trafalgar Square, Big Ben and so on. Here’s a good example of the kind of shoot we would do by the Thames: London Southbank Engagement Shoot You need to be experienced both with crowd management in these situations, and skilful with camera and lighting technique. The last thing any self respecting engagement couple want is a bunch of images that look like snap shots, probably like the majority of other folk with their cameras and phones out on the day. Now there is absolutely nothing wrong with snap shots, but there is if you have paid a professional to create your images.
There is a very popular misconception often from photographers outside of London, or those with less experience, that having famous and iconic backdrops behind a couple does all the work for you. Let us say with hand on heart that this is very far from the reality of the situation. You have to work hard with technique, pose and storytelling to create something that is truly memorable and meaningful. This perfectly sums up in our opinion any great wedding photography. As I like to quote and paraphrase England’s most famous photographer David Bailey: “Most people take photos. I make photos.”
The Chinese engagement photos here are from a large range that we did with Natalie and Max from Hong Kong. As Natalie was a flight attendant for Cathay Pacific we don’t think she had a problem scheduling her flights to fit in with the couple’s engagement shoot plans! Needless to say we had a great time, and that as always is reflected in the final images. It doesn’t matter how skilled your London wedding photographer is, they must have great people skills too.
Take a look at the range of serious and fun shots we have across our three galleries here: Wedding Galleries
Locations for the shoot included Tower Bridge and Butlers Wharf, Southbank and Big Ben.
As there is a carousel image included here in the post you can see more about this and the history of these fairground attractions here: London Wedding Carousels, we love them!
By David Green