How to choose a wedding venue.
So how to choose your wedding venue? This blog could get me into a lot of trouble. Having worked at many of the wedding venues in and around North Yorkshire and Teesside. But here it goes...
So he's proposed to you and lucky for him you said yes. The first things you'll want to do is choose the wedding venue. The single most important thing you choose for the wedding in my opinion. More than the dress!
Being a documentary wedding photographer I have worked in many local venues. \These include such ones as Grinkle Park Hotel, Rushpool Hall, Gisborough Hall and some of the smaller venues like The Spa in Saltburn, Hunley hall and The Arches in Brotton and Danby Castle. All of these offer a great days wedding and luckily as the area is so beautiful they offer great photographic opportunities too.
My studio walls and windows host a collection of images from such places. The lavish backdrops and stunning views, so why this blog? Well ten years ago this month I set about starting Discovery Photography. Back then there was only a few photographers and weddings tended to be held in the halls mentioned earlier. But now, things have changed everywhere seems to have a wedding licence and looking to cash in on next weekends wedding.
Last year I worked at some of the most obscure and smallest venues, This presented new issues of lighting, positioning and the all important bridal portraits. It seems that these venues that see it as a quick buck to cash in on the wedding industry, don't seem to have put the time and effort in to see how the venue looks from a photography perspective. Yes there is a ceremony area, Yes there is somewhere to eat and dance but not the small details.
I do work a venue quite regularly (name not to be mentioned) that actually has the registrar signing table in front of a fire exist! so one of the important ceremony pictures has to be heavily edited to remove the break glass sensor, fire extinguisher and fire doors out of the background. This venue isn't a horrible or cheap venue by any means, but what thought has gone into the layout of the room? I have another venue that is perfect and beautiful yet throughout the wedding ceremony I'm shooting direct into the window and direct sunlight, it might look nice from a guest point of view but the memories I capture last forever.
One of the worst is the man running away on the fire exist signs, I can almost guarantee it is above the bride and groom while they are at the front of a ceremony or as the bride walk down the isle, now I'm there to tell a story but a bride walking to meet her loved one with a "run this way" sign above her head... that is not the tale ~I'm trying to tell.
So every venue has its little faults, it's just the large venues that give me as wedding photographer the chance to re-position myself not to include them - Do you see these things as your looking around?
Down to the venue itself, have you considered how it will look on your wedding photos? You may be bound by the financial aspect of the booking the venue, but a working men's club isn't going to give you the same quality backdrop as Grinkle Park and the price some of these venues are charging now, it pays to shop around and look more specific. There are some beautiful venues that won't cost the earth, but will give lovely photographs.
I once covered a wedding at a local golf club, it was sleeting and early February. The bride and groom had 40 more guest arrive for the wedding breakfast, this meant extra tables had to be laid out and gave no room for me to work on the interior. The clients had no affiliation to golf and this left me little alternative but to work outside for the guest shots. But that is right you guest it - They threatened to sue me as all the guest looked cold and that is not what they wanted from their wedding. Was it my fault?
So, I leave you with one thought, a venue for a day or captured memories for a lifetime?
Got Questions? Contact Stuart