Rammell Photography

Surrey Wedding Photographer

13: A Task For Experienced Hands

Michael RammellComment

The Story

David and Shaleen Brough were married in a stunning November wedding at Easthampstead Park, Berkshire. This was the most emotional wedding I have ever had the pleasure of being invited to photograph.

Everyone was tearful on the day. Shaleen was at times, unable to get her words out when taking her vowels through trying to fight back the tears. This, in turn set David off who became very tearful too. A chain reaction ensued when a few guests also started to cry. This created an amazingly emotional atmosphere during the ceremony where it was plain for all to see that David and Shaleen are absolutely meant for one another. It was clear for me to see through the camera they mean the world to one another. It was impossible for anyone present to hold back their emotions.

A truly beautiful ceremony and one that I feel totally privileged and fortunate to be part of. A wedding I will never forget and a moment that I'm not sure I'll ever see again.

The Picture

The image I've chosen for this post however was from before the ceremony, the calm before the emotional storm: the getting ready part of the morning. But, this was where the emotions began...

I was fortunate enough that Shaleen was very happy to take direction during the hustle and bustle of getting her dress on. Despite the children running around and various people coming in and out, Shaleen was quite happily getting into her dress, with a drink to hand. At times it seemed Shaleen would go into a place of serenity whereby she became calm and relaxed. Then, a moment later she would remember she was about to be married to David; the love of her life and the nerves would kick in again. It was obvious to me as a photographer, having photographed many brides before, that Shaleen was a bride who cared so much about David and her family and that the wedding was so very important to her.


I asked Shaleen to move a little closer to the window and to turn her back towards it so that we could make use of the available light coming into the otherwise dim room. The light hit the white dress with some harshness and this is the shot I eventually ended up with from that moment:

'A task for experienced hands'

Shaleen getting into her breathtaking, classic dress,featuring a stunning lace-up back.


Given that there was so much lace on the back of Shaleen's quite simply stunning dress she became very conscious with what it looked like. When it was being tied Shaleen would ask constantly; "How does it look?". "How is going?". "Can I see It?".

It was at that moment that I cast my mind back to a shot a little similar to this one that I took back in June at Dean and Shelley's wedding. That shot was more by fluke than anything, but this one was entirely intentional. I wanted to show Shaleen how amazing her dress looked and that it was being laced perfectly. I also knew that I wanted to take this image and make it black and white. I jumped into my quick menu, changed my Canon to Black and White mode, took a few more shots and and showed Shaleen the back of the camera each time. It genuinely seemed to put Shaleen at ease. I think seeing the image in Black and White there on the camera also made a difference - seeing the image with some effect almost showed that colour was not what was making this scene, it was the moment itself that was beautiful. This was something I continued to do throughout the morning. Fortunately, with there being so much lace, I had plenty of time to get this shot right.

I'm sure you'll agree that Shaleen's dress is amazing.


Tech Specs & Gear

Camera: Canon 7d  |  Lens: Canon 24-70 L USM  |  Flash: None

ISO: 1600  |  f-Stop: f2.8  |  Exposure time: 1/250 second

As with all my images, Edited in LightRoom 4.


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