I've pursued my life-long love of photography to a professional standard but strangely enough I don't like to refer to myself as a 'professional' photographer. I think the term 'professional' in this industry has somewhat lost it's value and now banded around in the same way your local 'jack the lad' down at The Crown & Anchor is referred to as a 'legend'. [cringe!]
Academically most people would have had me destined for a life in Art & Design or Music. However, I first started out as a metallurgist but I always had a creative, artistic streak that far outweighed my knowledge of molten metal. I first discovered photography as a teen while I was hanging off a cliff or trying to climb something way harder than I was capable of with aspirations of becoming the next Chris Bonington (a true 'legend'!).
The small, 35mm film, Olympus camera I took everywhere with me was the start of something.
Firstly, I love cameras. I've had lots. Too many!! Some good, most not so great.
Secondly, now I'm older, it's made me think, 'Blimey, don't we get old quick?!' That unavoidable truth has made me realise just how important photography is to me.
Without meaning to sound too cliche, photography absolutely is about Life. Capturing it. I don't think any of us should underestimate how precious and delicate Life can be. Any of us can be here today and quite literally, gone tomorrow so we should all treasure Life and take the opportunity to capture special images because as the years whiz by, the memories in our minds fade.
When I'm shooting a wedding I try to capture all the generations of a family because we don't last forever and in years to come the value of some photos can be literally, irreplaceable. Moments in time - frozen - that cannot be physically gotten back but visually there for you to fondly reminisce over, even be amazed at how much younger you looked!
Which brings me on to wedding photography. It's so much more than just a job. You have to be passionate about it. When I'm shooting a wedding the images really are never-to-be-repeated. It's an opportunity for a whole family, who often don't get to see one another very often, to be in one place at the same time. I meet family members that have flown halfway round the world to be at a wedding, so it really is a hugely important day and one I see unfold in front of my eyes and for lots of reasons each and every wedding is so very different.
If you choose me to cover your wedding, you are handing me a front row seat to your wedding. If I'm photographing the Groom and 'the boys' I will be present as they all pace round in their pants getting ready. And if I'm photographing the Bride getting ready, I will be witnessing a transformation before my very eyes as the culmination of years of planning comes together.
As you [the Bride] walk down the aisle, and as you [the Groom] stand there looking at your Wife in 'The Dress' for the first time you will feel the full weight of the emotion of the moment. It's a day you will have taken 1,2 maybe 3 years to plan SO, if you are inviting me to your wedding, I think it's only fair I share with you images that give you an honest sense of who I am and what's most important in my life.