ENTERTAINING AL FRESCO: DINNER OR LUNCH TABLE STYLING

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Some time ago I collaborated with the gorgeous Katie Julia (go see her new blog if you get a moment, it’s so gorgeous), on a styled shoot at the very beautiful Thyme Barn in the Cotswolds. There were so many amazing dining areas that I couldn’t help re-styling our props into different tablescapes and loved all of the different looks we achieved.

One of my favourites was this mini garden table outside – the perfect inspiration not only for brides looking to create a laid back minimalist vibe, but one to save for all your Summer entertainment later in the year. Just add bowls of delicious vibrant healthy organic food and you are good to go. Aren’t these florals by The Rose Shed divine?

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Jessie

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SUPER 8 WEDDING FILM: PRETTY IN PASTELS, WOODLAND & WILDFLOWERS

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If you spotted the super pretty pastel wedding on the blog recently and loved it, well this is for you!

I wish everyone would book a wedding videographer for their big day – it’s still my biggest regret from my own wedding – and there are so many different styles to choose from now. I still adore vintage film and Super 8 short and sweet films the best though.

Check out this one by Bristol based Hugh Farrow and you’ll see what I mean. So cute.

See more of my couples and their real wedding films and videos here.

Jessie

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BOHEMIAN WOODLAND & WILDFLOWER WEDDING

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I should start by saying, this couple was one of the absolute loveliest I have ever had the pleasure of working with – they were kind, fun, lovable and so dedicated to finding artists who could fulfil their wedding dreams. And what a dream!

They got hitched in a sweet woodland location with the sound of nature and all their friends and family surrounding them, then led guests through a stunning field of wildflowers to a Sperry tent dressed with ribbon, fairy lights and giant dream catchers. The food wasn’t an afterthought, it took centre stage in terms of creative flair and guest dining experience – followed by an evening of live music as the sun set.

You can read more from the bride over on So You’re Getting Married and swoon over more photo’s by the gorgeous Binky Nixon in my online portfolio too. I truly hope you fall in love with this wedding as much as I fell in love with their sweet story.


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DEFINING THE MODERN LUXURY WEDDING

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modern luxury wedding planner uk

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder – and whilst my clients tastes will all vary, most couples do come to me because we share a similar design aesthetic. My brides and grooms will almost always ask me to help them plan and design a wedding that is elegant, feminine, timeless and personal to them.

Few people realise how hard it is to actually achieve that look perfectly, the styling is subtle yet stands out, and the success of it all comes down to effectively communicating a coherent design scheme with absolutely the right vendors selected to make it happen.

Hiring a talented and experienced wedding planner is of course a luxury, and the organisation behind the event is what helps take visuals to the next level so that all the senses are delighted. Guests should be wowed by the decor, but they should also feel relaxed, enjoy a carefully curated and delicious menu of food and drink, connect scent to their memories, dance like no one is watching and come away with an overwhelming sense of joy.

Whilst it is true that such a wedding often comes at great expense, for me personally the overwhelming mark of any luxury event should always be one of beauty, of understated elegance and the highest standards of comfort. It’s the experience that counts, especially on your wedding day, which is ultimately a reflection and celebration of your love for one another. It’s not about having the biggest floral arrangements imaginable, it’s about creating floral displays that play the perfect part of a journey that you and your guests will travel.

For me the word “luxury” should be associated with quality, craftsmanship, subtlety, detail, originality, timelessness. It’s also so much about incredible service and the highest of standards. It’s ultimately about how something makes you feel.

Here in the UK there are some incredibly passionate artists emerging whom are leading the way in the modern luxury wedding world, and I can’t wait to share some of our collaborations with you in the New Year – from styled shoots to real weddings and other sweet life celebrations – which I hope will truly inspire the stylish bride and groom looking to create magical memories for their own day.

Jessie

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{Image by Ashlee Taylor | Florals by The Rose Shed}

JUST ENGAGED? HOW TO CHOOSE A WEDDING PLANNER

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how to choose a luxury wedding planner

Written by Jessie Thomson, luxury wedding planner and owner of Jessie Thomson Weddings & Events.

So he/she popped the question… you said YES! What next?

I’m willing to bet with all the excitement you have jumped head first into the wonderful world of wedding magazines and wedding blogs…but it often quickly turns to feelings of being overwhelmed when faced with confusing checklists and hours of research required to find the perfect venue and suppliers. It is at this point that you should really take a big breath and seriously consider hiring a wedding planner – it’s so much easier to point you in the right direction from the start, than it is to try and fix mistakes after they’ve been made.

The word “wedding planner” covers a lot of different roles these days – and it’s no wonder that couples don’t understand the job, or find the process of choosing one quite hard. So just before engagement season starts (hellloooo diamonds at Christmas!), I thought it might be handy to give a handy outline of what different planners offer, and what questions to ask them before you consider hiring one.

SHOULD I HIRE A WEDDING PLANNER?

There are a few criteria I would always suggest you consider honestly when asking yourself this question!

Firstly though, I should say that almost all of my own clients are hard working and extremely successful individuals.They are more often than not, quite capable of creating their own large scale or complex events – however they also recognise the value of using an expert to make sure things are as stress free and flawless as possible.They end up with suppliers they can really trust, and can relax and enjoy the process so much more with me by their side.

Here are a few obvious scenarios when you should really seriously consider having a planner on board:

  • You don’t have at least 10+ hours every week for up to or over a year to dedicate to planning the big day (I typically spend 250+ hours planning each wedding, and I have all the contacts and experience to do it quickly!).
  • You are planning a destination wedding, or one which isn’t close to home – meeting and interviewing suppliers in person is so important, and a local planner will know all the best contacts.
  • You don’t enjoy throwing parties or have never organised a major event before – trust me, it is way more work than you think.
  • You lack creative vision or don’t want to simply copy all the other weddings on Pinterest!
  • You are beginning to resent the planning process and/or family conflict is an issue – I am often a counsellor as much as a planner, absolutely part of the job.

*I should also note here, many (most) venues have in house wedding co-ordinators, but please do make sure you’re clear on exactly what level of service they provide. In house wedding planners are usually employed by the venue to handle problems and assist on the day of the wedding only, and may only offer a list of their preferred vendors (not necessarily the best for your requirements). They very rarely do the same work as an independent wedding planner, and ultimately their boss is not you!

WHAT DOES A WEDDING PLANNER ACTUALLY DO?

What don’t we do? Although a planner is ultimately hired to create weddings for couples, I personally prefer to describe it as creating weddings *with* couples. They stay in control of the process and make the final decisions. The styling and details should always be personal to the two people getting married.

A really great wedding planner will have extensive knowledge. contacts and expertise in many sectors – from lighting and audio, catering, entertainment, budgeting`and financial planning, design and printing of materials, entertainment, contract law and negotiation, photography and videography, transport and venues, interior design… and so much more. Yes, an experienced and successful planner should have a great track record of beautiful and timeless weddings – but they should also be nurturing and maintaining excellent relationships with other wedding suppliers and vendors along the way. The best planner can combine all of those skills with an amazing vision, and tie it all together seamlessly.

So depending on your individual budget, time and requirements you’ll need to choose one of the following:

  • a full service wedding planner who helps to arrange every detail – from budgeting, to design planning, supplier selection and scheduling, guest list management, contract negotiation, detailed timeline creation, on site management etc. You name it, they have it covered.
  • a partial planning or styling service – perhaps it’s extra help finding the perfect venue, or a speciality caterer, or a little advice on working out the colour scheme and design details.
  • an “on the day” wedding co-ordinator – which almost always starts 2-6 weeks in advance (depending on whom you choose to work with).

CAN WE AFFORD A WEDDING PLANNER?

It depends on what level of service you opt for – full service wedding planning is the most expensive, but also offers the most value and may actually end up saving you money overall. Prices vary hugely in the industry – from under £1000 for on the day co-ordination, to over £25,000 for full service planning.

Typically I would recommend you set aside 10-15% of your total budget for a planner, and be prepared to pay more for the best. There is always someone cheaper, but don’t make a decision on cost alone. Remember that many of the top planners will work on only a handful of weddings each year to fully dedicate themselves to the process – I personally now only work for 5-10 couples each year, and my prices reflect both that and my experience.

BEFORE YOU CONTACT A WEDDING PLANNER

There are some planners that offer set packages, and there are some that only offer full service planning. Personally I prefer to work in a more bespoke way, so after in depth consultation I would price according to requirements. Before you contact me though it’s really handy if you have the following information ready:

  • How much money will be in your overall wedding budget?
  • How large or small is your initial guest list?
  • Where are you hoping to get married (i.e. locally, in the UK, further afield)
  • When would you prefer to get married (i.e. August is typically busier than November!)
  • Any creative ideas or your dream wedding vision – although if you are contacting a planner who is also a wedding stylist and designer, it really doesn’t matter if you draw blank on this bit!

WHAT TO ASK A WEDDING PLANNER?

I’m going to leave out the obvious here – clearly they will need to be both available and willing! But hopefully these questions will help you assess their experience and suitability. Try to relax and chat easily though, after all you will be working very closely together during often emotional times!

  • What made you want to be a wedding planner and how long ago did you start?
  • What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced and how did you approach them?
  • How many weddings have you planned, and when was the last one?
  • How many weddings do you work on each year, and do any fall within the same week/month?
  • Is wedding planning your full time job?
  • Do you only offer organisation and logistical support, or can you bring a creative vision to life with styling too? Can you recommend an event designer if required?
  • Are we restricted to suppliers you have worked with before or can we bring in our own if we want?
  • Do you accept or request commission or discounts from suppliers you recommend?
  • How many suppliers will you shortlist within each sector?
  • Will you come along to all our meetings and review our contracts?
  • Do you invoice us for all items booked or do we need to pay suppliers directly?
  • What parts of the planning process are we responsible for on our own?
  • Will you personally attend on the day of the wedding, and will you bring assistants? How long will you be there?
  • Do you have a network and good relations with other planners in case of an emergency?
  • Do you offer set packages or can you create something bespoke for us?
  • How often and when can I contact you?
  • Are there extra costs to attend a dress rehearsal or day after events?
  • Do you provide assistance with bridal party styling and dress appointments?
  • Can you help us with honeymoon and gift list planning?
  • Will you share the breakdown and allocation of our budget openly?
  • Can you give us any references or testimonials?
  • Can you show us portfolio images and/or videos of real weddings you have worked on?
  • How will you charge us? A set fee, hourly, or a % of the final spend?
  • Do you hire any items for styling purposes?
  • How do we book you? Do you require a deposit and instalments, and will we have a contract?
  • What is your refund or cancellation policy?

AFTER THE INTERVIEW

  • Can we afford what we really need?
  • Was there a good personal connection?
  • Did they listen to us?
  • Did the planner seem excited by our vision? Did they understand it?
  • Are we happy that they can work within our budget?
  • Have they followed up with a consultation report and/or contract including a full quote?

Your wedding planner is the vendor you will spend the most time with over the wedding planning process – to create a truly memorable wedding they need to be able to inject some of your personality and it’s essential you get on well together from the start.

Once you have hired them and started working together it’s really important to also trust them – from advice on timings that will flow beautifully, to which floral arrangement will look best in the setting – you hired an expert for a good reason, and a good planner will always be honest with a smile!

Jessie

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Find more information on working with Jessie at http://www.jessiethomson.co.uk or email at jessie@jessiethomson.co.uk

BRIDESMAID STYLE: PETROL BLUE DRESS & MESSY BUN

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Whether you are a bride wanting something super chic, or you are looking for the perfect bridesmaid dresses to compliment your leading ladies – I always think dresses by British designer duo Belle & Bunty are a beautiful style choice, and the colour of this petrol blue dress totally stole my heart on a recent shoot I created at Thyme Barn at Southrop, in the Cotswolds.

I can’t wait to share more from the full shoot with Katie Julia, but this dress absolutely deserved its moment in the spotlight. Would you dare to switch traditional white for bold blue? Or would you choose something blue for your maids?


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CREDITS

Styling: Jessie Thomson | Photography: Katie Julia | Dress: Belle & Bunty | Hair & Make Up: Heidi Vince | Jewellery: Ruth Tomlinson | Flowers: The Rose Shed | Venue: Thyme Barn

As featured in Wedding Sparrow.

MINI FLORALIA FESTIVAL: 3RD BIRTHDAY PARTY

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Since I first started up my event planning business I’ve designed and created many celebrations that aren’t related to weddings, but it’s not something I’ve shouted about that much… until now!

And that’s because I’m excited to properly launch a new and special part of the company: JESSIE KIDS.

Having both Flora and Augustus to cherish, entertain and throw parties for has opened my eyes up to a huge area of event planning and styling that seems to be forgotten about in the UK. I’ve absolutely adored creating fun yet stylish soirees that the children enjoy just as much as the adults, and think that every mama out there should celebrate their bump, babies and birthday’s in style.

You can read more Family & Baby related content here on the blog, but if you are interested in having someone help you style and co-ordinate a maternity or newborn portrait session, or create a special sweet celebration for a loved one, then contact Jessie directly at jessie@jessiethomson.co.uk.

For now though, I wanted to share with you a Mini Floralia Festival themed birthday party I created with Westwood Design for my daughter Flora when she turned 3 years old earlier this year:

Floralia is “a festival originating from Ancient Rome when the Romans celebrated the goddess of flowers, Flora, and the beginning of spring. The festival was then known as ‘Floralia’. The celebrations included playing games, singing, dancing and feasts. People would decorate everything with flowers, and wear them in their hair.”

Naturally the party was pretty heavy on the florals! We had mini floral crowns and buttonholes for boys and girls to wear, and hosted a Montessori inspired flower arranging activity where children decorated gift bags containing floral foam, before picking their own foliage and blooms to arrange inside from a flower buffet station. There was also lots of food, sweet treats, music and bubbles!

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Photography: Rachel Jane | Flowers: Westwood Design | Event Design, Styling & Planning: Jessie Thomson via Jessie Kids | Cake: Marie Green | Venue: The Beehive.

 

ILLUMINATED FINE ART + FILM PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP: SPAIN, EUROPE

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One of the absolute highlights of my career has been the absolutely incredible opportunities I’ve had to collaborate with like minded artists on editorial shoots, as well as meeting up and coming talent through my teaching and workshops.

Some of my absolute favourites have been a rustic fig inspired shoot as featured twice on Style Me Pretty, as well as in various other online and print media, the first Illuminated Collective workshop as featured in You & Your Wedding Magazine, Wedding Sparrow, and 100 Layer Cake amongst many others, a minimalist grey and ivory editorial that is appearing in Issue 10 of Magnolia Rouge, with a little preview from the day already featured on Wedding Sparrow. Most recently I also created a rich pink & plum editorial with gold accents at Aynhoe Park that has yet to be revealed… just you wait!

So it is with genuine excitement that I can announce here that the next Illuminated Collective workshop for photographers is being hosted in THE MOST BEAUTIFUL location in Spain, just an hour from the magical city of Barcelona. The venue is a grand Cistercian monastery with thick walls, massive columns and about 800 years of history in the heart of the spectacular Monasterio de Piedra park in Nuévalos, Zaragoza. Famous for the beauty of its natural surroundings, the ceremonies can take place within the abbey or outdoor surrounded by cascades and waterfalls.

Please REGISTER HERE to attend from 14-15 September 2015 | Price £850 / €1195 / $1316| Read FAQ’s

One of our amazing (and down right lovely) tutors Ashlee from Taylor Barnes Photography went on a little excursion there just a week ago so that we could share some images of the location, a handful of which are seen below in this blog post. Just. Too. Dreamy.

To say I am excited to be spending two days here with a group of incredible artists, styling both a wedding and lifestyle editorial shoot on each day, and making friends over delicious food and wine… well… understatement!

Join me alongside destination & luxury photographer Katie Julia, fine art and film photographer Ashlee Taylor, and insanely talented floral designer Amy from Bo Boutique as we take you on a journey where not only will you be able to shoot incredible images for your portfolios, but where we also teach you valuable skills in marketing your business to the ideal client, working effectively with wedding planners in Europe, as well as hands on film and styling tutorials throughout. See the full itinerary here.

Please REGISTER HERE to attend from 14-15 September 2015 | Price £850 / €1195 / $1316 | Read FAQ’s

Places are strictly limited and on a first come first serve basis, if you’d like to pay by instalments then contact the Illuminated Collective here for more details.

Jessie

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FIVE BEST BEAUTY BUYS FOR BRIDES

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As a wedding planner I’m often called on for advice outside of what most would consider “normal” duties! One of them is to recommend beauty products to brides, whom almost always want to be looking their absolute best on their big day (this usually means long locks, clear skin and healthy nails!). So here are a few of my tried and tested products, from personal experience and feedback from my lovely ladies.

1. EVE LOM CLEANSER

Described by Vogue as “probably the best cleanser in the world”, this has been my number one skin care recommendation since I first tried it 5 years ago – it’s a balm that effectively cleanses, exfoliates and tones with the regime that includes massage using a muslin cloth. It’s expensive but lasts forever, and basically replaces a lot of your facial care steps (unless you are me, and you buy new products simply because the packaging is pretty!).

2. VICHY IDEALIA SMOOTHING AND ILLUMINATING CREAM

I’ve experimented with a lot of moisturisers, a lot! This one is my all time fave, for sure. It’s totally gentle, suits all skin types, smells lovely and makes your skin feel all glowy. The packaging isn’t anything to write home about, but I kinda like the old school French pharmacy looking products on my shelf. It is both rich and light, which is hard to find in a moisturiser I think.

3. BAUME DE ROSE, BY TERRY

My make up artist (the extremely lovely Sophie Everett) introduced me to by Terry when I got married, and I adore this lip balm that also doubles up as a fabulous treatment for nail cuticles. Good news, they also do them in tinted colours now!

4. AVEDA DAMAGE REMEDY

The whole collection of hair treatments in this range is amazing, totally restores hair that’s been frazzled by heat/bleach/sun (or in my case all three!). Fabulous for those ladies (99% of us) who want to grow our hair out for TBD (The Big Day).

5. LUSH DADDY-O SHAMPOO

If like me your hair turns a little brassy a couple of weeks post highlights, then you definitely need a purple shampoo. This one smells amazing and is really pigmented, so works a treat! I reviewed it before here I’m also about to trial this one from Bleach London, who are constantly tempting me to buy their lilac hair dye. I’m not brave enough though, not nearly! The Aveda shampoo and conditioner called Blue Malva is also scent-a-licious but I find it’s not so pigmented. Perhaps better for every day use though!

Anyone else got favourite products for brides-to-be that they’d like to share? I avoided the nitty gritty stuff like teeth whitening, tanning and waxing – needless to say with all that prep, what you pay for is what you get, and don’t try anything new close to the wedding date!

Jessie

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IMAGE CREDIT: Taylor Barnes Photography

 

WHAT IS FINE ART PHOTOGRAPHY, AND WHY BOOK A FILM PHOTOGRAPHER FOR YOUR WEDDING?

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I first fell in love with fine art film photography when I met my now dear friend Ashlee from Taylor Barnes Photography, just under four years ago. She persuaded me to take part in a bump shoot whilst pregnant with Flora, and the light filled beautifully posed images made my heart skip a beat.

Fast forward to last year when we collaborated on a styled shoot at Barnsley House & Spa in the Cotswolds, as part of a fine art photography and styling workshop with the Illuminated Collective – the talent shown by the attendees blew my mind. I had no idea we had so many home grown incredible film photographers based here in the UK, and I adored how different each of their images were too.

So, I thought I’d showcase some of those amazing artists here on the blog – I hand picked five incredible photographers for you to admire, and asked them to choose their favourite three photos from the workshop, along with their personal thoughts on why a real bride should book a fine art or film photographer…

SARAH HANNAM

Sarah Hannam Photography provides natural light, documentary wedding photography services throughout the UK and internationally.

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What does fine art photography mean to you?

Fine art photography is a combination of bringing all the details big and small together and creating a styled artistic aesthetic that brings cohesion to the whole wedding, as well as documenting the wedding day’s important moments. Fine art wedding photography is basically what you see in magazine spreads – it’s editorial, giving you a feel of the look of the day. Even within the genre of fine art photography, there are a lot of different styles. Some photographers go for very over-exposed, high contrast & heavily saturated colours or way out posing, but I prefer to keep things looking natural not only in terms of colour, but composition too. I suggest some informally choreographed poses for portraits but I limit it to what looks natural. For me, the most important thing is capturing a moment of real emotional connection.

Why should a couple choose a film photographer?

Film is wonderful for its softness on skin tones, luminosity and delicate colours, so lends itself perfectly to capturing weddings and portraits. Often digital images of a white wedding gown can overexpose and burn out the fine detail, which is not ideal if the bride wants to see that couture gown in all its beauty! Having your wedding shot on film is undoubtedly a luxury high end product, due to the unavoidable base costs, but with flattering tones and a timeless quality, in my opinion it is a wise investment and pretty trend proof, which is an important factor to consider. Clients can also feel reassured that their film photographer really knows their craft and can think on their feet, because there just isn’t the option to quickly view the LCD. Remember not so long ago the thrill of collecting your developed films and walking along the street excitedly looking at the prints? Maybe that’s just me but what is alarming today is that we hardly print off digital files and no longer enjoy the pleasure of holding a real photograph. This is why I always offer a full set of proof prints as well as a USB, so clients actually have a tangible product to keep and look at. I think it is so important to be able to have the physical photographs in your hands, plus sitting down looking through your wedding album in years to come with your children or grandchildren will mean so much more than searching through tens of thousands of files on your computer. After all the festivities are over, the only thing left you have of your wedding day are the photographs.

You can see more of Sarah’s images from the Illuminated Collective workshop on her blog here and here, and where they were featured on 100 Layer Cake

RENATA FRY

Devon based beautiful fine art wedding photography and family portraits.

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I chose these 3 images as I feel they sum up what the Illuminated Collective Workshop meant to me; beauty, elegant styling and warmth. Everything about the workshop was beautiful. The venue, the models, the detailing and the other attendees images from the day. The styling was simply stunning, as evident in the photos I have chosen. The weather on the day of the workshop was perfect; a warm sunny summer’s day which meant the light was perfect for late afternoon portraits in the grounds of Barnsley House. I just love the warm palette of corals and peaches in each of the images.

What does fine art photography mean to you?

Fine Art photography to me is all about capturing details, styling and romance. It’s about recording a moment through the eye of an artist, seeing things from a different view point and focussing on the little details that have been carefully chosen by the couple. My aim is to use natural light and soft tones to record those memories to cherish forever.

Why should a couple choose a film photographer?

I just adore film photography. The flattering skin tones, the use of natural light and the amazing palette of colours that film delivers are just simply stunning. When I look at images captured on film they remind me of impressionist paintings by great masters such as Claude Monet. The depth of colour is incredible. As a photographer I have to carefully compose each shot and I am more selective with what I photograph. I also have to think carefully about my camera settings to obtain correct exposure, so I am constantly learning and improving my own skills by using film.

You can see more of Renata’s images from the Illuminated Collective workshop on her blog here, and where they were featured on So You’re Getting Married.

THOMAS, BOWTIE & BELLE PHOTOGRAPHY

Gloucestershire based fine art wedding photographers who travel the UK

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What does fine art photography mean to you?

Fine Art Photography means different things to different people; but overall, I think that it is photography shaped with the photographer’s artistic vision. Fine Art photographers do not simply document, but take part in the creation of an image, be it film or digital. Our vision of fine art photography is to capture moments filled with light, creating dreamy airiness and elegant simplicity. Every image we capture is special, and being able to participate, shaping beautiful moments into beautiful images is what the fine art ethos is all about. It takes a unique perspective, involves emotion and therefore every photographer, and every image is different. A fine art style helps create romantic, classic and timeless imagery, capturing the moments that make memories, and the individual details that bring everything together.

Why should a couple choose a film photographer?

Every wedding is special, unique and beautiful. When you choose your photographer, you want one that documents every aspect and truly captures the essence of you and your day. I think film is precious, and as a result, can capture precious moments. It’s creative, intimate and considered – capturing real emotion through thoughtful framing and beautiful colours. Film fits perfectly with a fine art style, documenting your moments of romance, joy and happiness; as a bride and groom you get beautiful shots that are delicate and real. It has a unique, soft look not found in digital with a real depth that brings images to life. To be able to shoot film well means understanding how to create and shape an image, film speed and light. Choosing a film photographer you can be confident they will be considered, caring and invested in creating timeless images for you, perfect to print for your album. You’ll get imagery conveying the emotion of your big day for years to come, every time you flick through the pages.

You can see more of Thomas’ images from the Illuminated Collective workshop here

CLAIRE GRAHAM

London based fine art photographer specialising in beautiful artistic wedding & lifestyle portrait photography.

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What does fine art photography mean to you?

I believe fine art is a way of storytelling with artistic and beautiful photographs, using natural light, soft gentle colour tones and styled pretty details.  Fine art is often a story being told by putting all the small pieces together to create a comprehensive story with detail shots being just as important as the portraits. In my opinion, fine art photographers have more freedom to explore unlimited visual opportunities and include more of their personal expression when crafting their work.

Why should a couple choose a film photographer?

Film has a softer focus and a less then perfect quality that many people are growing to love or/and appreciate.  I adore the colour, dynamic range, grain and little imperfection film gives to my photographs. By using film I can create a soft romantic look to my work. I think being a film photographer has made me more aware and pushed me creatively, as well as giving me new perspective as a wedding photographer.  I personally feel a better photographer by incorporating film into my workflow.

You can see more of Claire’s images from the Illuminated Collective workshop here and where they were featured on Burnetts Boards

RACHEL JANE

Wiltshire based fine art and film photographer specialising in weddings & equine portraits

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What does fine art photography mean to you?

Fine art photography to me is capturing even the simplest of detail and turning it into something beautiful; something you would expect to see on the pages of a magazine. When I’m shooting, I always look for the most beautiful light which can transform an ordinary image into something magical. I love to style every last detail, making sure nothing is missed and this helps me produce a coherent set of images with a very artistic feel to them. I concentrate on capturing real emotion. I do a few ‘posed’ shots throughout the day and even then, I only gently direct my couples. This is typically how a fine art photographer works- shooting with more of an editorial style.

Why should a couple choose a film photographer?

Film creates tones and colours that digital fails to capture which is the main reason I choose to shoot with this format. It also means I have to think more about each shot and this in turn has helped me develop my style further. I create soft, romantic imagery aimed at the modern day bride.

You can see more of Rachel’s photos from the Illuminated Collective workshop here.

Supplier & Vendor Credits:

Workshop: Illuminated Collective | Styling: Jessie Thomson Wedding and Events | Venue: Barnsley House | Florals: The Rose Shed | Linens: Table To Dine For | Stationery: Juliet Grace Design | Cake: The Natural Cake Company | Engagement dresses: Maids to Measure | Wedding gowns: Johanna Hehir | Hair Accessories: Kelly Spence | Jewellery: Astely Clarke | Tableware: Helene Millot | Make up: Nina Norman | Hair: Nicholas White

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