Picture This: A ‘first look’ | Michael Stanton Photography
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Picture This

Picture This: A ‘first look’

Picture This: A ‘first look’

In my ‘Picture This’ series I focus on an individual image, or series of images, and explain why I like it.

Old Chapel Centre wedding, Alfriston

It often feels like all the preparation and the excitement of getting married comes down to these few moments. All eyes are on two people who only have eyes for each other. It’s so public and so personal at the same time. Bride and groom have been apart for several hours and the ‘first look’, as it’s come to be known, is when a wedding day suddenly speeds up and takes off.

This short sequence from a wedding I shot at Rosie and Stuart’s wedding in the Old Chapel Centre in the beautiful village of Alfriston, East Sussex, is one of my favourite ‘first look’ moments. I managed to find a vantage point behind the stairs of the pulpit so I could photograph down the aisle without being too noticeable.

Documentary wedding photography

These four photographs cover just 20 seconds of Rosie and Stuart’s wedding, but they are filled with so much emotion and love and excitement and joy and desire. Although we don’t see Stuart’s face at all, we can guess how he’s feeling by the looks Rosie is giving him. Like a scene from a movie, the beat rises with each frame and there’s a second when it seems as if everything stops and everyone holds their breath. Then the final image is one of release and happiness and on they go…together.

So much of documentary wedding photography is about observation, anticipation and being in the right place at the right time. I think these few frames typify my style and what I notice when I photograph a wedding.

If you’re looking for a wedding photographer to tell the story of your Old Chapel Centre wedding, or any other location, I’d love you to get in touch.