Bringing a photoshoot to life

I previously wrote a blog about the feeling of having a photoshoot published for the first time, you can read it here. What I want to give in this blog is an insight into what it takes to bring those ideas into reality.

Firstly i’d like to say that putting together stylised bridal photoshoots across Coventry and the West Midlands is a fantastic experience, there are lots of incredible wedding suppliers based in the region and there is a strong community feeling to that as well - or at least that’s been my experience of it. So producing new ideas is a very welcomed, supportive and creatively charged process.

This particular shoot was a collaboration between several suppliers which was hosted by Fazeley Studios and The Custard Factory. The shoot originated with Judith of Pollen Floral Joy commissioning a metal ceremony archway. Judith and I have worked together on several shoots in the past and Judith wanted to achieve something different with this set of images that would celebrate the arch.

 
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It was a fantastic feature to centre a shoot around and with also having the opportunity to shoot at a rustic space that was being renovated at The Custard Factory the context was perfect. At the time I had been developing ideas for photoshoots that were minimalist and editorial, I shared a mood board with Judith who loved the creative vision and the direction for the shoot grew from there.

The day started with the team arriving meeting at The Custard Factory. This was actually quite an experience as everyone had their equipment, we brought along a collection of props and accessories to dress the space and there was also a host of fresh flowers as Judith had to create the arch on location.

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We shipped everything into the space which, and you wouldn’t tell this from the photos, had a team of builders working away preparing it for a reopening - drilling, plastering, painting. We bartered for the section of the room we wanted - they were lovely really - and then we were cordoned off with metal railings for health and safety.

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We then watched in awe as Judith, along with her colleague, crafted an archway full of colour, texture and shape working through buckets of fresh flowers and leafage. Here is a video I created of that process:

 
 

Helena and Nicola, our stylist team, created a gorgeous natural look on model Louise and we matched up the dresses provided by TDR BridalWear with the bouquets and headpieces and we were ready to go.

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The signature shots for the shoot showcased the model within the arch but I also wanted those key images to be supported by a collection of images that captured all the details of the look in a way that was in keeping with the editorial style of the shoot. To do this I incorporated key objects into the space that would allow creative placing of the bouquets and interaction with the model whilst retaining the minimalist qualities of the concept.

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We used large guilt gold frames, a rustic metal chair and artisan cake maker Emilia of Emilia’s Cakes created two minimalist cakes with gold details which we could add fresh flowers to during the shoot.

The combination of the visual style of the photoshoot, and both the careful choosing of elements and the arrangement of those elements within the space brought to life the essence of what we identified in our initial mood boards and discussions.

It’s safe to say that it didn’t take as long to dismantle the arch and pack everything down.