How to get the best wedding photos at Lillibrooke

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Our recommended wedding photographer, Hannah from Hannah McClune Photography is on the blog today to share her five top tips on how you can get the best possible photographs of your wedding day.

Hannah first photographed a wedding here at Lillibrooke Manor over six years ago! She has since been back too many times to count and has had the pleasure of photographing a wonderful wedding here in not only every season- but every month of the year! Over to Hannah…

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Firstly, congratulations on your engagement! This is such an exciting time for you both. Is it a fun and relaxed wedding you’re dreaming of? If so, you’ve picked the perfect venue looking at Lillibrooke Manor! The rural, rustic barn element makes the ideal setting.

  1. The main way to get the best pictures is to choose the right photographer for you.

Once you have your venue and ceremony booked it is best to then book your photographer. You can’t be too early to secure a photographer that you love.

The best way to do that is to trust your instincts. See which style of photography you are most drawn – scroll Instagram, browse Pinterest, flick through some magazines to see:

  • Do you like photographs that are light and airy or do you prefer the darker images? ⁠
  • Do you like editorial styling or prefer a more candid approach? ⁠ ⁠
  • Do you like dramatic or natural? ⁠
  • Do you like bold and bright tones, or softer and muted? ⁠
  • Do you like details and emotions?

⁠Once you know what type of photographs you would like it will help you to narrow down your selection of photographers.⁠Ask the venue who they recommend and go through the list to compare them against your style preference- you know they’ll all be familiar with your wedding venue. Also that they’ll be trusted by the venue, having proven over past weddings that they provide a quality service that past couples have loved.I’m certainly not the photographer for everyone- I don’t have a cool, urban, dark or dramatic style- although I know plenty of amazing photographer who are that I’d happily recommend.

Instead I’m drawn to rural countryside settings that are full of light to fit my timeless style- glowy, romantic and luminous photography. Concentrating on capturing your love story as a mix of the emotions and the pretty details.

Lastly, remember your photographs are the only thing (other than your ring and husband/wife!) that will be left after the wedding, so it’s important to value the investment you make. You can find photographers in such a huge price range, from £500 to £5000 and up! This variety will be dependent on their experience, if it is a full time job, the quality of their equipment, their reliability, insurances etc…

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  1. Do not fear the weather

It is less the weather, but more your attitude to the weather that impacts the photography. Having a spare pair of shoes and an umbrella to be able to hitch your dress up and cuddle under a brolly is the best way to explore the country wedding venue.

Lillibrooke Manor is a versatile barn setting for any weather conditions – if it is wet there are lots of beautiful spots within the grounds that make the perfect backdrops, also lots of shelter in doorways and gorgeous cloister area is undercover.

I’ve photographed over two hundred weddings- some in snow, some in gorgeous sunshine, some in wind and lots in rain! We may need to adjust the photography timeline, for example to leap out in dry spells for larger group shots. It really helps to be flexible and also embrace all weather conditions.

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rain on my wedding day Hannah McClune4 - wedding venue berkshire

rainyday Hannah MClune - wedding venue berkshire

  1. If there is anything special you’d love photographed- say!

Don’t be shy to ask your photographer to take any particular photos you’d love. It may be they’d take them as the day happens anyway- but if there is something especially meaningful to you it is worth letting them know ahead of the day.

I have a (very!) detailed wedding questionnaire that I ask couples to complete with their wedding information – I love it the couple add any special things to capture. It may be a particular piece of jewellery has sentimental value, it may be part of the décor was handcrafted…

  1. Allow enough time

Wedding days go fast! I’m sure everyone who is married has already started to warn you of how the speed of a wedding day is so different to the other 364 days of the year! Be sure to plan some time out just the two of you away from everyone to take it all in together.

An important window of time for your photographs is from when your ceremony ends- or if you’re getting married at a church- from when guests arrive at your wedding reception, to when they get called to sit down to eat.

Allowing ninety minutes is ideal to give you time to have some couples pictures, some group shots and most importantly candid photographs of you mingling and celebrating with your guests.

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  1. Don’t go crazy on your group shot list

Have you been to a wedding where the photos seem to take ages?

Group shot after group shot of everyone lined up, desperate to make a break for the canapés and fizz?

I promise not to take you away for long, but I do love group shots. How often do all your favourite people get together and all glammed up? An ideal number is between five to eight group combinations. It is great to be sure you have some taken, but be sure your photographers approach is to keep it smooth and flowing. Have an usher gather the groups together so you can seamlessly go from one picture to the next with your family.

For the bridal party pictures we have FUN! I absolutely love getting photos with your bridesmaids, best man and ushers that show your true personalities. We start with a few formal, then swiftly move onto some relaxed style.

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A little about Hannah McClune Photography

I’m totally smitten with weddings and take a natural approach, blending a fine art and documentary style. The most important thing to me is for the pictures to authentically reflect each couple and their connection. I started my photography business in 2011 and have grown the company to a team of five.

P.s I adore weddings so much that when I am not photographing a wedding you’ll often find me speaking at events to train wedding photographers. Or in our Facebook community chatting weddings, come and join us here

Connect with Hannah here:

www.hannahmcclunephotography.com

www.instagram.com/hannahmcclunephotography

www.facebook.com/hannahmcclunephotography & www.facebook.com/groups/theweddingsanctuary

Lillibrooke Manor Spring Wedding 31 - wedding venue berkshire

Lillibrooke Manor Spring Wedding 30 - wedding venue berkshire

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Sarah & Daniel February 2020

My husband Dan and I couldn’t have managed a perfect day without the amazing staff at Lillibrooke manor. From the day we first visited to look around all the way to our big day the staff have been amazing. On the day itself Vincent was a legend with all other staff attentive, polite and professional. Any last minute requests or changes were adhered to with no fuss and the day could not have gone better. Lillibrooke manor is the perfect setting for a wedding.