Being a Shoreditch wedding photographer, or for any area in London as we are, it allows you to document not just a couples special moment, but the history and cultural backdrop of the places you are in. In London most areas are constantly changing, especially in the east of the city and every time we return to places like Shoreditch, Hoxton, Hackney and the like for a wedding day we see businesses have changed, street art has come and gone, and some brand new funky places are there now to explore.
When we met with Claire and Jamie in January to speak about their September wedding in the city, we knew they were people who wanted to put their very individual stamp on their big day. For some brides and grooms planning their wedding they are happy to follow a traditional template and time frame, for others everything from locations, events to service wordings are personalised. I only have to look at my parents wedding album to see how much things have changed!
Claire decided to get ready for the day at a friends flat near Old Street tube station, and then get a cab to meet her bridesmaids and close friends at a hotel near the church. The ceremony was to be at Shoreditch’s most iconic and landmark church St Leonard’s.
St Leonard’s Church is a dominant sight right on Shoreditch High Street that has stood since the year 1740. It is famous from the children’s nursery rhyme Oranges and Lemons with the quote: “When I grow rich, say the bells of Shoreditch.” The church was used in 2010 for the BBC comedy series Rev, and a fair few famous people are buried in its churchyard too.
Claire and Jamie’s lovely service was peppered with some great readings from friends and family, and during the signing of the register the best man and friends sang beautifully and hauntingly for us all to enjoy. I love the fact that these guys strapped a GoPro camera to the service microphone stand for some unusual close up video images of the couple during the service.
After some quick family photos in the grounds of St Leonards the wedding party walked on mass to nearby Shoreditch Studios for the wedding breakfast and reception. We took some time alone with the couple to take some shots on route to the venue. We had only fifteen minutes but that’s not a problem for David and Joanna, we are used to that!
We started with some traditional shots by the church (shown at the end of this post) just to tick the boxes for those that would expect some, and then moved on to a more quirky and reportage style, which is what the couple wished for and valued most.
Shoreditch studio is an event space we were already familiar with, and it really is a blank canvas for couples that want to superimpose their characters and wedding vision on to it. It has two large areas and an outside space converted from railway arches.
Here was the venue for wedding speeches, wining and dining and dancing a plenty. There’s a photo here for my own amusement as much as anything, of some of the wedding party’s reaction as I fell over some hidden furniture. I managed to take this shot just as I hit the floor. I was not injured thankfully!
For some more tastes of a few of London’s East End weddings we have photographed recently, take a look at a couple of related posts here: Aldgate Wedding Toynbee Hall in London’s East End and Hackney and Hoxton wedding for Carly and Jim
By David Green