Katy & Ben's wedding at Ashton Court Mansion, Bristol
In the summer I was super excited to be covering a wedding at the grand Ashton Court Mansion in Bristol and it turned out to be a very enjoyable one with lots of special moments which I'll talk about shortly. I'd not long done a previous shoot there for a Batman themed charity event where the venue was transformed into Wayne Manor for the screening of Brett Culp's 'We Are The Knight' documentary. Katy & Ben actually came down before the shoot to go through their final plans and have a run through of the day.
Ashton Court Mansion
On the wedding day itself it started with preparation shots of Katy and all her best friends at a beautiful 5 bedroom house they had hired in Bristol for the Friday night. Last night's wine and champagne bottles were scattered around the kitchen and new ones freshly popped for the morning! Everyone looked ok though so I don't think too much was consumed (right Katy....?!) :o)
My good friend and excellent videographer, Nigel Sheppard of Ever After Films, was in attendance to cover the days proceedings too and we worked around each other getting the various shots we needed. The makeup was being done in the conservatory at the back of the house which was perfectly lit by a sky light ceiling, sunshine and blue skies. Bridal preparations Matching bridesmaids dressing gowns Bridal preparations Bridal preparations
As all of Katy's close friends were there, some who'd traveled from distance, she was keen to get shots of all of them on the bed together and of their first sight of her wedding dress. It was a very girly moment, although a really nice one, when they all saw the dress which drew lots of gasps and applause! Katy also had a picture of her dad on her bouquet as he had passed away some years before. I see this sort of thing a lot and it always makes me sad to think someone will not have their parent by their side on the biggest day of their lives.
Bride and bridesmaids The wedding dress reveal
Katy's bouquet in memory of her father
With all the preparation shots done I made my way to meet Ben at the venue and get a few shots of him and the boys. Katy also wanted me to be there when she saw her nan for the first time in her wedding dress as she is very close to her. As the minibus pulled up with all the girls in and Katy saw her it was an emotional moment.
Arriving at Ashton Court Arriving at Ashton Court Arriving at Ashton Court The guests had filled up the ceremony room already so all that was left was for Katy to make her grand entrance. All eyes were on her as she was given away by her nan. After a very sweet ceremony everyone couldn't wait to get outside for some fresh air and sunshine. Once the confetti was thrown Ben's sister, Alison, got to introduce his brand new niece, Isabella. Amazingly, she was only born 48 hours prior to the wedding and leading up to the day it was touch and go whether they would make it but hats off to Alison for being a trooper and coming along. You can see on Ben's face what it meant to him and it was a special moment for me personally to capture it. Close friends and family excitedly waited their turn for a shot of them with the new arrival to the Roberts clan!
When uncle met neice Mum, nan and auntie meet Isabella The weather was perfect and the backdrop stunning and I wasted no time in getting through the group shots so that everyone could enjoy the refreshments being served (by another handsome devil called Leon!) The rest of the time leading up to the wedding breakfast was spent getting informal, casual shots of the guests basking in the sunshine. Katy and Ben wanted a very relaxed approach to their wedding photography and to just get a feel for the day.
The stunning views of Bristol Leon serves up the drinks Guests enjoy the sunshine
With 10 minutes before speeches were to commence I popped inside to get pics of the table decorations whilst they were still untouched. So much effort goes into them that it's a shame to not get them. Katy and Ben were welcomed into the room with whoops and cheers from everyone. The groom did a great job of saying how beautiful the bride looked, and the best men did a great job of embarrassing the groom (which is their job of course).
Table decorations Table plan Wedding cake and top table Bride and groom entrance
Probably my favourite part of any wedding is doing the couple shots of the bride and groom. It's where we can slip away from everyone and take some time to create beautiful images of them whilst they get to kiss and cuddle as newlyweds. When you have the weather on your side, a truly stunning venue in Ashton Court Mansion and a good looking couple like Katy and Ben then it's a perfect mix. My favourite time to shoot is of course 'the golden hour' which is sunrise and sunset (although sunrise is a bit early for bride and groom shots!). The sun is very low making light and shadows more flattering, and colours more vibrant. It's also a chance to get some silhouette shots. In midsummer the 'golden hour' is more gradual as the the days are longer as opposed to winter time when that hour really is an hour. With summer weddings and it not getting dark until 9.30-10pm it is possible to get silhouette shots before sunset by shooting directly into the sun, as I did here.
Silhouette of bride and groom
After the cutting of the cake and first dance I set my lights up outside and invited guests to come and have their photos taken with the sun setting behind them, which was a great chance to get pics of the evening guests too. Katy and Ben were all photo'd out by this point but managed to come for a few more which I was really glad about as we got these beauties with Ashton Court in the background as well as some group shots with their friends.
Bride and groom at Ashton Court Mansion Bride and groom with friends A perfect day for a perfect couple. Congratulations Katy and Ben, all the best for the future x See all of Katy & Ben's wedding photos here. Please feel free to leave your comments below.
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Here are some more highlights from the day....
Brides shoes Chanel perfume Bridal preparations Bridesmaids helping with the wedding dress The beautiful bride Bride with bouquet in black and white Groom and best man in discussion Ceremony room with guests Bride walks up the aisle Exchanging of rings Bride and groom kiss Signing the register Husband and wife walk down the aisle Husband and wife walk down the aisle Confetti Bride and Groom with Groomsmen IMG_0287 Bride and Groom kiss Ben with Isabella Isabella with great grandmother Informal guest shots Informal guest shots IMG_0536 (1) Informal guest shots IMG_0361 Informal guest shots at Ashton Court Mansion
Instagram details Ashton Court Mansion Speeches Speeches Groom's speech Guests watching speeches Groom's speech Best men's speeches Best men's speeches Best men's speeches Bride and Groom at Ashton Court Mansion Bride and Groom at Ashton Court Mansion Bride and Groom silhouette kissing Bride and Groom kissing Bride and Groom silhouette kissing Bride and Groom kissing in front of Ashton Court Bride and Groom looking good! Nigel Sheppard of Ever After Films in action Nigel reviews footage with Katy & Ben Wedding rings Bride and Groom cutting the cake IMG_0608 The first dance The first dance The first dance Dancing queens Party time! Evening guests Personalised shirt Evening guests at sunset Katy with her rugby team Evening guests at sunset Guests at sunset Group shots Guests at sunset Guests at sunset