Where has another month gone?? Spring is over and Summer has arrived and with it the busiest time of the year for weddings.
But that's not to say there hasn't been lots going on in May and I've enjoyed sharing images from recent weddings on my Instagram feed.
Each month I produce a top 5, as decided by YOU - assuming that you ever like any of my images on Instagram that is!
We've got lovely this month of images from 5 different weddings at 5 different venues, 3 of them in Worcestershire and the other 2 from in Shropshire
Top of the Pops for the month of May is this one from a recent wedding at Curradine Barns showing the moment before the arrival of the Bride for her wedding ceremony.
Why do I think it came out on top? Well, I think it's something that everyone can relate to, with the Groom and Bestman in the foreground and all the guests all turned, expectantly waiting for the Bride. Even without a caption or explanation I think you can tell what is going on and for me that's what reportage or documentary wedding photography is all about. It captures a moment in the story, there is a narrative to the image that says something about the wedding day, in this case it's the expectation of the procession
It's also a great example of why I love black & white images so much. It's not that it wouldn't be the same moment in colour, but black & white has a simplicity about it, that removes visual distraction from the frame and draws the eye in to the subject matter
This second image is another example of the power of a monochrome image and also captures a real moment
Lucinda, the Bride, had finished getting ready for her wedding at The Granary, near Bromsgrove, and was waiting for her Dad to arrive.
Behind me are her three Bridesmaids, also anticipating his arrival and how he will react. Often, you can feel the emotion during bridal preparation start to build and in this case it was almost palpable
With Lucinda sitting on the bed she was trying not to make eye contact with any of her bridesmaids for fear it would start her crying and smudge her makeup. I think it's her hands raised to her face that really makes it for me, almost as though she's trying to hold it all in
In this next image we have a slightly more comedic reaction but never the less it's a part of the narrative of this wedding day. The Bride was getting ready at The Bowling Green at Hadley, ready to head to Malvern Elgar rooms for the wedding and then Churchfields Dairy Farm for the reception
During the morning three of her friends arrived and came to see how she was and of course there was lots of chatting and catching up.
I honestly can't remember what little juicy titbit had just been revealed but I love the reaction from her friend.
Is it surprise? Is it shock? I'm not quite sure but I like it!
During a wedding I try not to interfere with events or get in the way - just call me the ninja photographer!
But of course it's nice to get some photographs of just the Bride & Groom who don't actually spend that much of their day on their own
So, to this end, I suggest that at some point during the afternoon they head away from their guests for a stroll, to reflect on their day so far and to enjoy some time together. I tag along, trying to capture candid shots that show them and their feelings for each other
Here we have an example of one of these shots from a wedding reception at Albright Hussey in Shropshire
As the sun started to get lower in the sky and the shadows lengthened, Alex and Chris went for a stroll down a farm track and into some long grass
With me trying to be inconspicuous (maybe I need camouflage?!) I captured this shot of them lost in the moment. Of course the backlighting adds some atmosphere and the sun wonderfully illuminates Alex's hair, but it's that eye contact between the two of them which makes it for me. Human interaction, real emotion, pure love
Finally we have an image which taken out of context perhaps loses some meaning but still must have resonated with people to have made it to the number 5 spot this month
It's from another Shropshire wedding, taken not long before the bridal party headed off to Hadnall Church in the vintage double decker bus shown in the background
This was the method of transport for the day, not just for the bridal party to the church, but also for the whole wedding party afterwards to take them to the reception at The Moat Shed, near Wem
Only the Bride, Groom and Bride's parents knew about the bus so it was a complete surprise to the bridesmaids when it pulled into the cul du sac where the Bride's parents lived
Once they'd got over their surprise they took a glass of bubbly each and went to take a look.
This image was taken as they were heading back inside and I think shows the joy they were feeling about their friend's impending wedding
You can see more of Astrid & Mark's Moat Shed wedding over in this blog
So, that brings us to the end of another month's round up from Instagram
If you want help decide which images make the top 5 for June then click on the Instagram link at the bottom of the page and head on over
Thanks for reading, any comments and feedback all appreciated :-)