A vital (and loved) part of my job is styled shoots – for which I team up with talented and unique wedding suppliers, together we create stunning visual stories. It’s an enjoyable way to flex my creative muscle and come up with new inspirational concepts.
Styled shoots are very different from shooting a wedding. A styled shoot is a creation of a vision, whereas wedding photography is my way of telling someone else’s story. Both beautiful, but quite different.
I teamed up with the lovely Shilpa Reddy, a floral stylist based in South London, the creative director of this Urban-Tropical shoot.
The venue, West Reservoir has stunning features bathed in natural light thanks to its large windows. Walls and floors were crisp white. It had all of the raw, gritty feel of a warehouse and the pure white was the perfect juxtapose to this tropical theme. You wouldn’t expect to find a jungle paradise in a warehouse in London, and that made it even more special.
So anything is possible, and new ideas for a unique wedding can be done!
I couldn’t wait to help bring Shilpa’s vision to life, and while we hadn’t worked together before, we made a dream team as we both love to do things a little differently. I usually like to go a little more out there and try to create something quirky and fresh – Shilpa and I shared this vision and that powered this styled shoot.
I noticed the lack of same-sex couples being represented visually within the wedding industry. This is why we decided to use a real same-sex couple.
We were happy that the gorgeous couple, Federica & Marianne, agreed to work with us. They want to celebrate their love and become role models for other same-sex couples. Using a real couple makes the photos so much more powerful, as you cannot fake the intimacy, chemistry and energy that two people in love create. We had a legitimate same-sex couple who believed in our message – JACKPOT!
Lots of foliage was used against a mostly-white background so the colours really popped. The use of more foliage than flowers is another way in which we liked to do things differently for this exotic, tropical setting. We used a mix of an urban and tropical theme which, on paper, sounds bizarre but resulted in a beautiful shoot filled with gorgeous greens and a couple very much in love. I absolutely adore creating this modern, quirky, Tropicana story in an urban venue in a quite feminine way.
There are a number of things that I really loved about this styled shoot. As a naturally creative person, I find the process really special. It’s an honour to get together with like-minded people and put on our creative hats. Coming up with ideas, brainstorming and forming a story is really exciting. I love weddings with real personality when couples come up with ideas that are really out of the box and a bit crazy – it’s so unique and refreshing, so I really value the importance of styled shoots.
I love the idea of capturing the story of these two beautiful girls deeply in love. This is the story of a real couple planning their wedding and expressing their love with a magical energy. Federica is a very well-known bespoke wedding dress designer, so she already had an eye for beautiful wedding style. I’ve known Federica for a long time, I really admire her courage and style. Marianne is a very charming person, a real joy to work with.
Oh, and of course a special mention to GOLD PINEAPPLE CAKE made by Monannie Cakes. The cake (very tasty I might add) was matched with the small pineapples dotted throughout the shoot, which were used to add more colour against the greenery. Signage by Love Signage detailed little gold pineapple graphics along with “you had me at aloha” text which I thought was so clever as it referenced the classic line “you had me at hello” but with a tropical twist.
The gorgeous tropical leaves which Shilpa supplied were carried through to the stationery by Mani’s Creative, which featured the green colours and giant leaf illustrations.
Make-up by Jane S. John and the stunning white clothing by House of Ollichon and Zara finished off the romantic feel with soft colours and pale tones.
The stunning images ended up being a truly treasured tale of two people in love and did wonders for getting same-sex weddings into the spotlight. We were thrilled to see coverage in Way Out Wedding and Your London Wedding!
I can’t wait for the next one….