Ashleigh and Jamie - August 6th 2016 - Stephen Beecroft

My first time at The Little Haven Hotel in South Shields to photograph the Wedding of Ashleigh and Jamie. It was a location I had been to before to photograph some sunrises from the Pier. I remember thinking at the time it would make a great location for a bridal couple to walk to get some shots. So I was pleased when I was booked to photograph this Wedding that I would get the opportunity to trt out some of my ideas. 


Asheigh and and her bridesmaids had being to the hairdresser before arriving back at the hotel. Myself and my assistant for the day Richard Davison caught up with them when they arrived back to start to capture some of the details of the wedding, like flowers, shoes and jewellery as well as some casual photos of the girls as they started to do their make up and get ready. 

After capturing some detail shots and some bridal preparation shots we headed to see Jamie and the rest of the boys getting ready. They had the penthouse suite so we were offered fantastic views over the beach and harbour. It was here that we decided where we would take a photo of the full wedding party that would also take in the coast and pier behind them. 

After seeing the Groom we headed back to see the Bride. Ashleigh was now ready so I concentrated on getting some portraits of her and also with her Father. This can be a frantic or anxious time for a bride but Ashleigh's Bridesmaids were doing a good job of keeping everybody calm and relaxed. Once we had finished we went up to the ceremony room to get ready.

I covered the front of the ceremony and I designated Richard to wait for the Bride to arrive and to cover the ceremony from the rear and side of the room. Having two angles covered isn't always possible dependent on the venue but was easily possible here as there was a lot of space around the wedding guests.

After a lovely and moving ceremony all of the guests headed outside so that we could do the family formal portraits. As mentioned we had arranged to get a large group photo from the penthouse suite. Richard was despatched to the room whilst I organised the bridal party to where we needed them. Thanks to Richard for this shot. I think it really captures the location and view that the couple chose to be married at.

I continued to work through the rest of the family portraits before I had some time with the newly weds to get some portraits around the grounds and coastal setting. It's often a good time to do some of these photos as it gives the couple a chance to spend some quiet moments together. I try to stand back at this point and just look for natural interactions.

Soon enough we returned to the reception for the speeches to take place. Knowing Jamie was a teacher I knew he had the experience of standing up and speaking confidently. Very emotional at times he did a great job.

We gave the couple some peace for a while until the light started to fade. I had been hoping we would get some dramatic clouds around the coast to act as a backdrop to the lighthouse and the pier. We became quite lucky once Jamie and Ashleigh were on the pier. Although a little wind swept they did a great job of walking along the pier and letting me setup some images. Richard did a great of also going onto the Pier with a flash and my new soft box which was getting its first airing at a wedding. The new soft box helps to spread the light more evenly and a little more naturally.

I kept the couple out for as long as I dared before they needed to return to their guests for the evening reception. I photographed the cake being cut and then it was on to the first dance. It wasn't long before guests were up to help the couple out with their dance.

After capturing a few more candid portraits we said our goodbyes so they couple could enjoy the rest of their evening without my cameras in their faces. Richard got this photo of me with the happy couple just before we left. All the best for the future Jamie and Ashleigh.

Thanks to Richard Davison for his assistance and for being my second photographer on the day.

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