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Expert advice about photography

Here is a selection of Q&As from Your Kent Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to


A room with a view

A room with a view

Q. Our venue is gorgeous inside and out. How can we make the most of it with our wedding photos?

A. Penny Young says: The first step is to make sure you tell your photographer why you chose your venue and what you love about it. Tell them about the specific area you like and then let them use their creativity to capture you in these locations on the day.

Make sure you've allowed enough time for your photos, in particular your couple photo shoot, as feeling rushed is the worst and you'll want to make sure that you've had enough photos in your favourite spots.

I'd recommend breaking your couple photos into two sessions, the first before your reception and the second later in the day. Your venue will look very different in the early evening light and then again when it's completely dark.

Finally, be sure to choose a photographer who can capture the style of images you really love.

Penny Young ,Penny Young Photography


A confidence boost

A confidence boost

Q. We're both a bit camera shy and are feeling anxious about a lot of photos on our wedding day. Can you offer us some advice?

A. Albane McGuinness says: On your wedding day you'll want to be surrounded by people you love and trust. So, when choosing your photographer your priority is, of course, to find one whose style you like, but it's also important that your personalities gel. You need to make sure you feel comfortable with them. They should understand you, as well as your likes and dislikes, so that on the day they can blend in with your guests, allowing you to forget they're even there.

If you're anxious, very often your photographer will suggest a rehearsal photoshoot around a month before your big day. This will usually take place at your venue, enabling you to chat about where you want to have shots captured on the day. Couples usually find this shoot reassures them and it builds their confidence in front of the camera.

Albane McGuinness,Albane Photography


When the stars come out

When the stars come out

Q. What are your suggestions for creative night-time shots?

A. David King says: When planning to capture a creative night-time image, I first look at the venue's surroundings. Look at the ambient light and see whether you need to enhance it with additional lighting and especially look at the sky to see if there are any interesting cloud formations.

Try to add a few elements of interest, I love to use sparklers in my evening images. For this shot, I needed the couple to stand still, as the exposure would take a little time to hold the sky. I also used a backlight to surround them with a glowing aura, before running around them for 10 seconds to create the spiral of sparklers. It takes time to organise, but the finished photograph is always worth the effort.

David King,David King Photographer


Choosing your storyteller

Choosing your storyteller

Q. What should we consider when choosing our photographer?

A. Camilla Harney says: When searching for your wedding photographer, the first thing to do is check out as many wedding photographer's websites as possible. Spend as much time as you can looking through their work to get a feel for their style. Focus on the variety of weddings they've covered, and the images they capture, rather than if they've shot at your venue. A good photographer is adaptable, and it's more important that they're a good fit with you and your personalities. When you've found the photography you're passionate about, it's really helpful to speak to them and arrange a meeting. Make sure you discuss your plans for the big day in detail - this is as much your time to find out about your photographer as it is their time to find out about you. You need to feel at ease with them and be confident that they understand your personality, style and vision for your wedding. If you're relaxed and happy with them, your images will reflect this.

Camilla Harney,Camilla Harney Photography


Gone with the wind

Gone with the wind

Q. March is significant to us, and we'd like to choose this month to say our vows, but last year in particular the weather was awful. How would we get around that when it comes to our photos?

A. Berti Munro says: You can't control the weather, but you can plan for it. For example, I approach every wedding with “plan A – the perfect scenario,” and “plan B – the worst case scenario.” In plan B, where the weather is less than ideal, I will have made sure that I've scouted the venue, making notes on the alternative locations and features.

Your photographer should make sure that you're comfortable having photos taken outdoors as well as indoors. I'll always make sure that I have two sets of umbrellas with me – two transparent and two white. These can be used as quirky props.

If shooting outdoors really isn't possible, there will be features of your venue that can serve as inspiration for some wonderful interior photos utilising characterful doorways, windows and staircases.

Remember, planning always pays off. It gives you time to be creative no matter what comes your way.

Berti Munro


Showstopping shots

Showstopping shots

Q. How can we get couples shots with an added wow-factor?

A. Carla Guest says: I'm all about that wedding-day connection, which is where the real wow factor lies. I have some prompts for my brides and grooms when we go off together to capture their portraits – some cheesy, random or funny things I say to help them relax and forget I'm there. I like to remind them that they've just got married, encouraging them to share how they felt in that moment of seeing each other for the first time.

If I see a creative opportunity on the day, I always tell my couples about it and ask them if they mind giving it a go. Usually, it's a huge “yes” as it means they get to hang out with each other and have some alone time while we capture some epic shots.

Carla Guest


Autumn glow

Autumn glow

Q. I love the autumn, but I'm worried that the shorter and possibly dull days will have an impact on our photography. How can we make the most of the light?

A. Lee Gordon says: We love the autumn too, and I would say if you love it, go for it! It's a wonderful season that offers stunning foliage, colours and that gorgeous golden light that photographers strive for. Every season has its advantages and disadvantages to be aware of, and information is key!

The main point with autumn weddings is that we lose the light quicker than we would at a spring or summer wedding. As such, it's the timing of your wedding day that needs your attention. With our clocks changing towards the end of October, I would advise planning your wedding service earlier in the day, around 1 o'clock. With the light fading around 4 o'clock, that should allow your photographer plenty of time following your ceremony to capture those all-important formal photographs.

The big advantage here is the gorgeous golden light falling a little later in the day that your photographer can take advantage of during your portrait session. With the sun getting a little lower in the sky, it rewards us with those stunning dreamy images. You're then free to enjoy your wedding reception happy in the knowledge that the all-important photographs are in the bag!

Lee Gordon


Could it be magic

Could it be magic

Q. We don't want to rush our couple shots but are worried about our guests becoming restless at the drinks reception while they wait for us. What can you suggest?

A. Neil Edwards says: For many, the photo reception is a waiting room for the wedding breakfast. They can feel awkward if they don't know their fellow guests, and they're eagerly awaiting their dinner.

A close-up magician will mix and mingle with your loved ones, engaging them with interactive entertainment and creating a fun atmosphere full of applause and laughter. Guests who had been strangers have then shared a common experience, breaking the ice and stimulating conversation.

Magic is incredibly popular, think David Blaine, Dynamo and the fact that there have been more magician finalists on Britain's Got Talent than in any other category. Having a magician around will not only eradicate boredom but also take away any worry you may feel about your guests while you're away from them, allowing you simply to focus on capturing the best couple shots with your photographer. What's more, your guest snaps will also be enhanced in seeing your nearest and dearest reacting to the amazing entertainment you've provided for them. Having entertainment where they're the stars of the show, being amazed and having fun will ensure that they will fondly remember your wedding for years to come.

Neil Edwards

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