Blog post

Jul 2010

Emma and Mick at Forest of Birse Kirk

Emma and Mick at Forest of Birse Kirk

On Saturday, I was at one of the most remote churches I have ever worked at. As you drive off the road not far from Finzean, and continuing driving for several miles into a Forest, it is hard to believe that you are on the right road or that a church can be there. I photographed Nicky Walker, the florist to Ritchie many years ago so I knew where I was headed. The church has no power and a generator has to be used. However the setting is beautiful and I was looking forward to working there.

Panorama taken by David who was working with me taking the informal shots.

It was extremely windy with gusts up to 60 mph and it was very frustrating not to be able to make use of the stunning scenery. I persevered and managed to get a few shots showing the church and the setting. Sandra who was assisting me was setting the dress and keeping it in place before diving out of the shot to let me capture a shot before the wind caught the dress again.

We tried to find the most sheltered areas and used the side of the church as a windbreak. Click here to see the full set of "formal" images.

A shot looking back down to the church before leaving to go to the garden.

I had been to Emma and Mick’s beautiful cottage before the service where the garden was lovely and also sheltered so I suggested to Emma that the Bridal party and parents all went there for the photographs. This did not take us too far out of our way and allowed me to get all the bridal shots in a nice sheltered setting.

Being their own garden made it more personal and allowed me to get shots with Emma and Nick’s two dogs. While taking the Bridal shots, a deer ventured closer to see what was going on and David got a shot of it.


The garden was great as there was plenty shelter and everyone was able to have a drink while the photographs were being taken. It may look as if the flowergirl, Niamh had taken a tipple but she was only having a rest from the bridal photography.

When Emma had met with me before the wedding, she said she did not photograph well and we discussed how I would make sure she was standing properly for posture, that the lighting was good, and that I would take several to ensure a good expression. On the day Emma was superb and very easy to photograph as was her bridesmaid, Serena. You can see in the image above how beautiful she looked making my job easy. With the light behind, the correct amount of flash and the superb new Nikon 70-200 VR11 at  f2.8, a beautiful close up with the background out of focus is easy to create and is one of the most popular shots from any wedding.

It was then back to the Victory Hall in Aboyne where I had a few groups to take and I used the arches at the front door as a background. As the service had started late, the few shots we did take at the church taken a while due the wind, and the unplanned trip to the garden at home, we were almost 30 minutes late which is most unusual for me.

It was a very good friend of mine doing the catering – Grant Wright of Newmachar Hotel (Evening Express Pub of the Year, 2010) and Corporate Catering Services. As an experienced professional Grant was relaxed about the delay and as soon as I was finished his team were ready to start serving. During the speeches, I picked 20 shots to load on to my now indispensable iPad, edited them quickly, and was able to show Emma and some of the top table a few shots before I left. I have been doing this for most jobs and it is very well received. Look out for a blog post on my experience (and the apps I use) with the amazing iPad.

Click here to see the full set of "formal" images, and click here to see David’s informal shots

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