Serena and Dave | Our wedding day | Saint Mary’s Church | The Afro Caribbean Millennium Centre | 21st October 2017
From Red Stripe to goat curry, this was my first taste of a Jamaican wedding. With the ceremony held at the very bright Saint Mary’s church and the reception at the Afro Caribbean Millennium Centre in Peterborough, this was a wonderful, culture infused wedding day. I have done weddings at Saint Mary’s Church before and the lighting inside this church is perfect. The church is a fusion of traditional and modern designs. Some modern churches lose the feel of that historic, personal feel, but Saint Mary’s distinctively keeps both of these feelings. The Millennium Centre is conveniently across the “very busy” road.
Arriving at the bride’s house on a sunny Saturday morning, I heard a very familiar voice, Tania, a friend of the family and owner of Just 4 Cuts hair salon in Peterborough. Tania was in charge of the hair and also a guest for tonight. Serena used to work at Tania’s salon many years ago. Whilst taking photographs of the prep stage of the wedding day, I couldn’t help notice something that totally excites me…a cathedral length veil! I cannot get enough of the 3 metre long veil when it comes to photography. For one, you cannot repeat a photo with a flowing veil as the wind will do its thing with it, so each photo is unique. You can get very creative with a veil of such length, and with certain lenses, you can get wonderful photographs. I actually own 2 cathedral length veils, one in classic white, and the other one in Victorian black!
When I met Serena and Dave, they wanted somewhere nice but not far for their bride and groom shoot. I always suggest the cathedral gardens for couples that get married at Saint Mary’s and being minutes away from the church, it is perfect. It may not seem much at first sight but trust Nikos and his very different way of seeing the world. Another skill required is to create photography at the same location but to make it different from everyone else’s wedding day. This really is an art form in its own right because I believe the couple influence this change. Let’s face it, all couples are different and so too is their clothing. If Serena didn’t have a cathedral length veil, then the photos would have different for example. Serena and Dave really enjoyed the shoot at the gardens and were very happy with my choice. of location The one photo that killed the day relied on luck though; when the veil took off during a photo but with luck I happened to press the trigger as it took off. I caught this photo perfectly and is one of my all time favourites. Maybe it was the intense kiss from Dave that blew the veil off? 😉
Throughout the day, I ALWAYS show my couples the previews of what I have taken so far on my camera. Yes, that is correct; non edited, raw, perfect photography. Capture the image right in the first place and you can do much more. I am from the era of 35mm film, where you had to get the photograph right first time. An era where taking a thousand photos at leisure and deleting them at a push of button did not exist. My first camera was a 1970’s Olympus OM-1 SLR and I will never forget the instructions manual telling you how to take a photograph. One thing that I was mesmerised with was the paragraph about taking photographs at different angles, because it is satisfying to the eye. Today, I still use Olympus, but a digital version of my old OM-1, called the OM-D E-M1.
Meanwhile, at the Millennium Centre, the aroma of Jamaican food made the soul smile. The guests insisted I sat with them and they brought me a plate full of gorgeously tasting food. My plate consisted of goat curry, barbecued jerk chicken and a mix of fish creations which were all ridiculously tasty. The whole wedding day was tasty, add the right ingredients and you have a tasty dish. Serena and Dave made this wedding day, they were the perfect ingredients to a wonderful day…