I love covering city centre weddings, and you don't get more central than Barbican in London, at the Montcalm at the Brewery Hotel where Stephen & Gary tied the knot in September, with the adjoining Chiswell Street Dining Rooms hosting their reception.
The venue itself was a contemporary setting finished to a very high standard, and was very easy to take photographs in as there was so much natural light. Even after dark, handheld images could be achieved outside at 1250-1600iso due to the amount of street lighting in central London, allowing me to achieve my favourite shot of the happy couple outside their venue, all of which was evenly illuminated.
The ceremony itself was a little different than usual, breaking with a number of traditions and achieving a feel much more personal to Stephen and Gary. As they had been legally married a week or two earlier, this ceremony took the form of more of a celebration of their love - including their Celebrant providing a brief history of their relationship, personalised vows and a number of the guests standing up and delivering short readings on their behalf. A rough ruby was also passed around each guest during the ceremony before being placed on Stephen and Gary's hands at the end which is something I have never seen before but I believe is a brilliant symbolic gesture bringing the couple and all their guests together.
The reception was more of a party, and a lovely one it was. As you might expect there was joking and dancing, and their first dance was particularly fun. As the light fell, I took advantage of the low white ceiling in the Chiswell St Dining Rooms to bounce flash around effectively.
Congratulations to Stephen and Gary! I have displayed some of my favourite shots from the day below: