A call from the Colorsport office on a sunny Monday morning began the day on a high note. The Times newspaper had been in touch to ask if anyone was available in the Manchester area. I was. The assignment, which I gladly chose to accept, was to visit the Lowry Hotel in the city centre to produce a series of photographs of Manchester City star James Milner who was launching a new foundation aiming to help young people.
From the foundation website:
The James Milner Foundation (JMF) is a charity to promote healthy recreation for the benefit of young people in the United Kingdom by the development, improvement and provision of opportunities in sports, in particular football, rugby and cricket.
Naomi & Dave tied the knot on a gorgeous late March day, at Shrigley Hall, near Macclesfield.
The day began nice and early with the usual, final few preparations.. and oddly, a decent breakfast! A call from my assistant for the day, Gary Eddleston meant it was finally time to leave for Naomi’s home around 10am. Upon arriving, the nerves for the day ahead were setting in – amongst the bridal party, I might add! Thankfully I’d arrived before preparations had began, so was able to quickly run through the day and plan a few extra shots that would be required.
Arriving at the Cheshire village of Pott Shrigley, familiarity took over as my memory mapped out the country roads ahead of me. I found Gary awaiting me in the car park and we set off for the hotel reception to find our groom for the day, Dave. Having checked the bar; we eventually found him putting the finishing touches to the ceremony room. Half a pint later, and we were ready for some photos!
..and finally, something a little bit arty?
The new year was brought in with the wedding of Charmain & Garry, at the Etrop Grange Hotel close to Manchester Airport. The wedding began at 4pm, and so the sun had set before the ceremony had finished, cue interesting lighting scenarios! I had the fantastic and invaluable help of Gary Eddleston whom acted as a second photographer-cum-light stand. This allowed for us to get through a variety of shots more smoothly and for myself to have more time interacting with the newly married couple.
The wedding of Maggie and Matthew took place in the stunning Grade II listed surrounds of The Place Hotel Apartments, Manchester. In attendance, to induce salvation with his gorgeous crepes, was Andrew from Original Crepes. Assisting myself (with a lovely 15mm fisheye!) was Chris Jackson whom I must thank for his light holding abilities!
Whilst Winter brings darkness and gloominess (seemingly by the bucketful in Manchester), it also brings new avenues for creativity. Darker afternoons mean natural light is, well.. none existent. Flash provides a new angle on lighting, and used well can add another dimension to what would otherwise be dull, flat images. Coupled with beautiful surrounds.. you can’t help but capture those unique, treasured images!
Karen & Ian’s wedding was a late booking for myself, and luckily fell between other jobs I had booked in. Luckily for the happy couple, the weather could only be described as ‘August’, with beautiful sunshine and t-shirtly warm air. The afternoon went off without a hitch, and before I knew it I was leaving them for their meal – time flies when you’re having fun!
Siobhan and Rob booked me for their wedding quite some time ago off the back of other weddings I did for their friends and family. This one was a little closer to home though.. only as far as Nottingham! The ceremony took place inside Nottingham’s St Barnabas Cathedral, followed by a reception at the beautiful Bestwood Lodge.
They were a great couple to work with, and our only limit was time.. there were certainly plenty of ideas being fired around – including jazz hands in the mini maze!
I shot this wedding for a good friend, Sean Peters at the village hotel, Hyde.
Last Friday, I had booked in Elizabeth & Danny’s wedding. It was only to be a small affair, with just a handful of guests, but this did not make it any less important. It allowed for more time to be spent with the bride and groom to get more photographs of their biggest day together. They were a lovely couple to work with and I wish them all the best in the future – especially that they don’t get stuck in Greece because of the ash cloud. Not that I’d be envious much!
With the Great Manchester Run approaching, some of the stars of the show were put in front of the press to help build up the events profile. Jo Pavey, Derartu Tulu and Haile Gebreselassie were present to answer the presses questions, and pose for the cameras.