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    Hello - My name is Ben and I'm the photographer & owner behind Touch Photography (see random pic). Here you can find my latest wedding photography shoots & pre-shoots and occasionally some personal photos or interesting commercial shoots; with the odd random thought, insight or anything else that may tickle my fancy.

    Please also view my PORTFOLIO website. (esp if it's your first visit here?)

    So whether youโ€™re recently engaged, past client, friend, fellow photographer or simply just browsing that big wonderful web โ€“ then thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoy!

    Thanks Ben x

Sian & Ross – a fond farewell to London

This post is a little different.

So Sian & Ross got married last summer… on what was probably one of he hottest days of last year! …it was an amazing wedding with boat trips, beeches and a steel band – to name just a few highlights, but due to unexpected complications we had to forgo the portraits on the day.

So a couple of months later, Sian & Ross asked me to do another shoot around London. This time with no time constraints & complications of the wedding – we could spend as much as time as we wantedย  ๐Ÿ™‚

Below I’ve shared a few of my favourites from the day and written a few thoughts about my thinking behind the images etc.

 

Though before we get to the images a few notable mentions on the day were……

Sian’s wedding dress was by Sassi Holford – though don’t ask me which one it was?! ……update: the wedding dress is called ‘Maria’ – thanks Sassi Holford ๐Ÿ™‚

Shoes were by Christain Dior

That amazing barnet was done by the talented Cassandra Rizzuto at… www.loveyourhaircassandra.com

…and make-up was done by the equally lovely Katy Messer at… www.makeupbykaty.com

 

So first up… we started at One Tree Hill in Greenwich Park… it was a spot that Sian & Ross used to visit… (they did live in nearby Blackheath but they’ve sinced moved to sunny Sydney!) …and have fond memories of.

This photo (above) has got to be one of my favs… strong, bold, and moody – just about to take on the world perhaps!?

Using additional lighting makes your subjects pop from the scene and gives a different feel to just using daylight. Here I’ve gone for a stark directional lighting set-up to give a distinct look. Bride with attitude!

I liked the crop and simplicity of this image, with the framing of the leaves… (above) a B&W version, (below) a desaturated fashion look.

(Above) the same image with different a re-touch applied… what do you prefer?

Note: My usual style of re-touching for weddings is either bright & colourful or a rich black & white with a complete grey-scale spectrum present… but always natural and not messed around too much.

I’m certainly not one for fads or gimmicks using lots of OTT effects – I often see wedding re-touching look like it’s had an iphone /instagram app filter applied to it – all very well for your camera phone images, but do you want that sort of style applied for your wedding images? I’ve got a sneaky suspicion it’s going to look rather dated in say 10 or 20 years time, becoming a fad of this generation. Anyway I’ve gone off on a tangent/rant!… So where was I? …Oh yes, as this wasn’t part of the actual wedding, I could obviously experiment with different styles and treatments. So rather than one whole set of cohesive images, I’ve gone for strong one-off compositional images & locations.

Maria wedding dress - Sassi Holford

(Below) Next up… a different set-up, with more emphasis on the natural. The actual available light on the day was pretty flat and overcast to say the least… but that doesn’t mean the images can’t be bright & colourful – just careful fine tuning of some ambient fill in flash in soft boxes.

(Below) we found this lovely old tree… I just loved that bark, all old and gnarly, a great contrast against the softness of the dress and their skin.

(Below) Time for a coffee… but before we left, I couldn’t pass up that gorgeous chesterfield and window light.

Fond memories of Borough market… though pretty much closed on a Tuesday!

Next up we headed onto London Bridge… for a few experimental shots during the afternoon rush hour!!ย  Hats of to Sian & Ross for braving the crowds and numerous stares. There. was. just. so. many. people! – So many in fact that a bridesmaid from another wedding I shot recongised me and said hello!

As they were soon emigrating for sunnier climes over in Sydney – what better way sums up London; than that frantic afternoon commuters rush hour home from the city… (though I’m sure they have rush hour in Sydney too) …but London Bridge has that quintessentially London feel – In years gone by they would of been wearing bowler hats and walking sticks, now it’s rather more M&S and laptops.

(Geek Alert!) In terms of lighting and exposure – it’s at f/22 at around 1/4ย  …and my flash was at a it’s maximum power setting, I feel there’s certainly enough blur in the people to give the sense of what we were trying to achieve, but if I wanted to go for total blur and really over power the available light – I should of bought along the Profoto Acute B2 instead – that would of done the trick!

Next… some shinny marble for a clean & contrasting background.

Sian certainly looked like the queen of that walk!

A quick glance over to Ross… gives Sian a cute smileย  ๐Ÿ™‚ย  (Below)

Looking down or closed eyes creates a sense of inner contemplation.

(Above & Below) – The same shot 4 different treatments… 4 different feels – which one do you like best?

Same again (above) 3 different treatments… fav?

Note: I actually personally really detest strong or even noticeable vignettes for wedding images (the black circle around the image) …usually it’s a sign of lazing re-touching by photographers, but used in a creative and meaningful way – it can add a sense of drama to a photo. One of these as a large fine-art print or canvass… would look stunning on any wall.

A little fun!

It’s in the eyes… though not quite visually perfect – I would of preferred more of a tilt on the head and a slightly different viewpoint… but it’s always a tad tricky while working on location.

Strong Architectural lines work well in portraits……

The same shot left & right (above) …changing the white balance / colour balance of part of an image can give a total different feel & look to a photo… viewed together I admit it does look a bit odd, but if it was viewed on it’s own – you probably wouldn’t even of noticed.

……as do reflections and mirrors.

By this time (Below) we had been out shooting literally all day & night!…

…so we headed back to their house, Sian & Ross got changed and we all went out for some well deserved food & vino…. in the shape of steak & malbec at a lovely restaurant in Blackheath called Buenos Aires.

A big thanks to Sian & Ross – you were both fab on the shoot and I had a really enjoyable day …and evening with you both. ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

 

  • Aw17/04/2012 - 15:35

    Beautiful set of images!ReplyCancel

  • Iain Gomes09/05/2012 - 07:18

    Love them all but in particular the purple shots…. cracking!ReplyCancel

  • Matthew Joseph17/05/2012 - 12:07

    LOVE this shoot – great work and very inspiring. Helps when you’ve got a B&G up for it, locations were brilliant choice.ReplyCancel

  • Kristen Dee25/05/2012 - 19:36

    Love how you captured the environment! Great job!ReplyCancel

  • Becky25/10/2012 - 13:06

    These are brilliant. As a photographer it is nice to see something different. I loved so many of them. Really nice indeed.ReplyCancel

  • Denis14/01/2013 - 09:22

    Great work!ReplyCancel

  • Steve & Sandra15/03/2013 - 19:13

    Wow, i love the bride & groom portraits under the tree, these wedding images are so creative, amazing! absolutely love them, Steve & Sandra.ReplyCancel

  • Paul17/06/2014 - 08:19

    Love every shot, an outstanding set of images.ReplyCancel

Shirley & Roger Pre-Shoot – Winter Wonderland

A few months ago one of my brides getting married this year – Shirley, suggested she wanted to do something a little different for their pre-shoot… now normally, most pre-shoots either involve going to the venue to scout for locations or going for a pre-shoot in London or nearby to have a different set of photographs from the one’s taken on the big day.

As your well aware, photography involves the art of capturing light, it’s the recording of the light reflected back through the lens and onto the film plate (sorry! – I mean’t sensor, we are in 2012 after all ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) that makes up what we call a photograph. If there’s literally no light – you don’t get a photograph…. then of course you could start to use a different light spectrum to make up an image such as x-ray and infra-red… but now I’m just getting geeky!

So what did Shirley have in mind for her pre-shoot? …yes that’s right – a night-time shoot at the winter wonderland in Hyde park!

Now of course… lots of new or even experienced photographers wouldn’t want to undertake such a challenge, if you’re used to shooting your style of portraits in gorgeous sunlight with lots of warm hues in the evening sun perhaps (though in this country we don’t see much of that!) – it’s easy to become complacent… On a side note: I often wonder if the fancy pants photographers that people rave about so much in the wedding industry that live and produce their work in gloriously sunny Calfornia or Australia, with amazing sunsets nearly everyday – how well they would do if they had to come up with that same style in, wet, dull overcast conditions in London? …it literally wouldn’t even be possible, as they’re reliant on that big ball in the sky.

Anyway back to the night-time winter wonderland pre-shoot… yes it is a bit more of a challenge, it certainly wasn’t my first ever night time shoot and I’m sure it won’t be my last! …even though it’s at night, there is always still lots of light around us, particularly in a big city like London – it never gets truly dark. Plus we could utilise all the bright lights of the funfair to good effect… plus using additional off-camera flashes and lights too when required.

The day(s) itself was eventful to say the least, but you can read more about what happened by Shirley herself over at Rock My Wedding

I’m going to go straight to Shirley & Roger’s pre-shoot slide-show below but before you get on to that…. here’s a little something extra that made me feel rather dizzy & sick by the end of it – but it was certainly fun!!?? Click HERE

Thanks to Shirley & Roger – you guys were fab! xx

  • Alex Mortimer28/03/2012 - 13:35

    Its nice to see a very different pre-wedding shoot! Looks like some real natural moments and memories were captured in these photographs!ReplyCancel

  • Andy Holland14/04/2012 - 13:58

    I like your work you have lots of beautiful photos – you are very talented, I love the way you seem to capture the mood in each shot very natural.ReplyCancel

  • Amanda17/04/2012 - 15:36

    Fantastic work and the post processing is sublime.ReplyCancel

  • Steve & Sandra21/03/2013 - 00:04

    Yet again great work, love the shot of Roger looking at Shirley through the glass, stunning work, really romantic yet natural images, Steve & Sandra.ReplyCancel

Rock My Wedding Real Brides Hen Do

A few weeks ago I got invited to shoot the Rock My Wedding Real Brides Hen Party…… organised by the lovely girls –ย  Shirley (one of the real brides) & Kim from the pink pumpkin ……held at the Swan at the Shakespeare Globe theatre, London, which is a great riverside wedding venue – with amazing views across the Thames to St Pauls Cathedral and the city. If it’s your wedding reception venue – then lucky you!…. because if it’s a lovely clear day (like we had) …you get the most amazing skies and sunsets from the balcony room at the swan.

It was a fun filled day – full of activities, from decorating funking letters to attempting to make wedding jewellery to trying on lots of dresses from Mamfii Bridal.

Also on hand to provide amazing barnets was Severin Hubert & his team from the Hepburn Collection and make-up & lashes from Mariam Jenson.

It was great to meet everyone… and I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

As the fabulous Charlotte over at Rock My Wedding has posted her feature of the day now… I won’t re-post too many pics, but if you’re interested in seeing more – then the slide-show is at the bottom.

Rock My Wedding - Charlotte at the Hen do - at the Swan the Globe LondonSeverin from the Hepburn Collection & Charlotte from Rock My weddingWedding Photos at the Swan the Globe, London

Big Love & Hugs to all the girls …..wishing you all the best for your forthcoming weddings ….I’m sure they will all Rock! – and I look forward to seeing & reading about them over the coming year.

Below is a few extras I took with my Fuji x100 – totally forgot I bought it along…

It was great to also finally meet the main man at Rock My Wedding – Adam (above) at – and cheers mate for this little behind the scenes shot of me mid-action!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

  • Neale James16/02/2012 - 06:37

    Some cracking shots here Ben. Been following a little of what you do for a while, and from one photographer to another, enjoy it. Your work is somewhat different to my own, and I can see an energy in your photographs that flows through your style. I see you’re an X100 fan too. I have that body, haven’t yet used it I think to it’s full advantage. I think I should take it out of the box more judging by your shots. All the best, NealeReplyCancel

  • Shirley19/02/2012 - 21:02

    Ben – you’re a SUPERSTAR and we love you very very much! Thank you for taking these pics and for generally prancing around with us all day. Great to see you again and can’t wait to see you at our wedding in 8 week! lots of love xxxxx ShirleyReplyCancel

  • Lee11/04/2012 - 08:42

    Great set of photos Ben, looks like all the girls (and you!) had great fun. Nice use of St Paul’s also.ReplyCancel