One of the main reasons for commissioning a professional wedding photographer is of course to provide images that will be their most valuable many years after the wedding when your own personal recollections are fading a bit, the details become a bit hazy and your memories of the day start to lose their clarity and colour, a bit like a photograph left too long in the sun.
All of us, when we think back 10 or 15 years often recall a friend who seems to have disappeared off the radar and who we haven’t seen in ages. If we have the pleasure of making contact again (much easier in this age of social media) it can be wonderful to meet up and sometimes carry on exactly where you left off.
This photograph reminds me of the kind of person who is the life and soul of the party. I took during the receiving line at a Pennyhill Park wedding. At this beautiful Bagshot hotel, you can hire the Balmoral and Sandringham – two huge rooms at the top of the stairs above the bar. When you organise a receiving line, the guest ascend the stairs to meet the bride and groom outside the Balmoral room. This guest had just climbed the stairs and seen the bride and groom at the top. I just love the expression on his face. You and I might not know who he is but I think you will agree you get a great sense of his character from the image.
To be honest I can’t remember exactly whether he was a friend or relation to the couple but I like to think that they will smile broadly when they see this photograph in many years time and will be reminded of him and his character much more than they would with a simple record shot of the guests. It’s one of my wedding photography principles to try and show something of the character of friends and family at the celebrations and to depict something of their relationship with the bride and groom.