Am I the Best Photographer for your South Wales Wedding?

A simple Google search will prove that there are nearly a million wedding photographers in South Wales.

That may be a slight exaggeration, but there are enough of us to provide you with variety and choice.

You’ve probably looked at many before me, so how do you know that I might be right to photograph your wedding in South Wales.

Finding a wedding photographer who matches your values and meets your expectations is important. Below is 10 points that I find are consistent about the clients who book me.

Wedding Photography in South Wales by Owen Mathias
Finding the best photographer for your south Wales wedding is an important part of your planning

1. You’ll be planning a day around your guests

We’ve all seen weddings in magazines where the bride pretends to be a princess marrying her prince. There’s usually horses and carriages and castles and pomp.

How must the guests feel at these weddings?

Bored probably.

Booking a venue that can accommodate grandparents or friends with children. Or planning the timings to ensure nobody is bored. Carefully customised favours and gifts or special mentions to everyone in your speeches are just some of the ways you make your guests feel welcome and demonstrates you’re nice people.

Alternative South Wales Wedding Photographer Cardiff
Are your guests central to your wedding day planning?

Some examples you’ll find around my site

South Wales has a huge variety and mix of wedding venues. There’s countryside barns such as The Farmer’s Barn at Rosedew Farm, to Tuscany style Vineyard Weddings at Llanerch. Some of the most fun weddings I have photographed have been in village halls. Check out Jade and Luke’s wedding in Dinas Powys or Eve & Liz’s fun wedding in Pontcanna! I’ve found myself photographing party animals at the Park House Club or Penarth Pavilionwhich can be just as much fun.

That’s why, when you’re looking for your ideal wedding photographer in South Wales, you need to take the time to find your perfect match.

You may not have to go as far as Alex did when he married Rhoswen at Llanerch Vineyard. He sang his speech, with a line included for every single guest. You can watch it here, filmed by the amazing KM Videography.

Natalie and Ben got married near their new home in Australia. A month later they came home for a party with family and friends and asked me to photograph their South Wales wedding at DeCourceys Manor.

Becky and Luke booked Buckland Hall as it could accommodate all their guests as well as children. There was still plenty of room for a late night party!

2. You will be looking to smashing any outdated traditions

Weddings are full of traditions, and they’re different in every country depending on the history of what marriage means. Many of them centre around female ownership and patriarchal values. It’s of course important to respect your families and elders who may place a huge importance in these traditions, but question everything.

Everything, including the cake, should be up for review – you’re only going to do this once so do it your way.

Did you know you can get married in a roundhouse at Coed Hills Art Space, surrounded by sculptures, stone circles and beautiful countryside?

There are plenty of places in South Wales to have unique wedding photography

Many wedding photographers in South Wales will be emphasising the normal, the traditional at your wedding. Choosing a photographer that understands what is important to you as a couple is important.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t have the best wedding photographs. Click here to read ‘10 ideas for your alternative wedding to guarantee unique photographs’

3. You’ll be used to equality in the workplace and everyday life and will be amazed how much is still expected at weddings

If there was a workplace culture where women needed permission from a man to do anything, or only men could speak, there would be complaints and law suits.

The impact a speech by a bride, bridesmaid, mother or female guest can have upon a wedding cannot be measured.

If there are young women or girls present at your wedding they’ll be looking at their elders, the bride and bridesmaids, for a measure of how they’re expected to behave.

Setting the precedent and demonstrating equality by not leaving all the talking to the men is a great demonstration from our generation about just how far things have moved on.

Bride making a speech captured by south wales wedding photographers
It’s your day, let your voice be heard!

4. You hate the thought of posing or having awkward moments while a photographer shouts at you

*whilstle blows* “EVERYONE STAND STILL!” – “SMILE AT THE CAMERA” – “SAY CHEESE”

Bo**ocks to that! We’ve been groomed from a young age to smile at cameras. It’s a form of propaganda our parents have grandparents have instilled in us to make sure other people think that we’re happy. Grinningly happy. ALL THE TIME.

That’s just not how life is, or how people are. You can spot a fake smile from a mile off, so can I. And you don’t want those in frames on your wall.

Photography is 99% psychology and 1% pressing a button. I’ve spent way longer honing my people skills, my ability to read people, make them relax and bring the best out in them than I have figuring out my camera.

Just look through my site and look into the eyes – all of the eyes. You’ll know what I’m talking about when you see it.

When looking around south Wales for wedding photographers you should bear in mind how you’ll want to feel when you look back on your wedding day photos. It can be a minefield choosing a wedding photographer and south Wales has some of the best. But finding the right person is the key.

South Wales Wedding Photographers
No Awkward Poses!

5. It’s important that your photographer fits in with your friends and family

This is personal to you. Not everyone likes being stalked by a creepy cameraman dressed as a snooker player with a giant lens and a penchant for insulting family members. If you do then I can send you over links to a load of photographers you’ll love.

The greatest compliment I receive at a wedding is ‘so, you’re a friend of the couple right?’ or ‘how do you know the family?’

My super power is making people feel relaxed. I love killing awkward moments with laughter or listening at length to war stories. I get my reward back in the photos I capture of people who open up to me in a way I feel they find unexpected.

If I’ve done my job right then I will have every one of your guests put at ease. Although a drink or two may help, the longer I wait with my camera down then the greater the chance of me capturing that winning photo. The soul of that person you know and love enough to have at your wedding.

So take your time and meet plenty of wedding photographers around south Wales and make sure you connect with the person you choose.

South Wales Alternative Wedding Photographers Cardiff
You know when you’ve found the right person to photograph your friends and your family

6. You’re looking forward to the party as much (or even more) than the rest of the day

When we got married we could only really think about the party. Everything else was just the build up, the stuff before. Family and friends were asking us about the ceremony, speeches and the formalities that had to happen. Hannah and I just couldn’t wait to start dancing and let our (metaphoric) hair down.

Many wedding photographers in south Wales leave straight after the first dance. That’s just as the party is beginning. This to me is what it’s all about. The celebration, the fun, the nonsense and where people really come out of themselves.

So when your looking around at wedding photographers in South Wales, bear in mind your emphasis of the day and what you’d like captured and to remember later in your life.

Find a photographer who will get involved in your party!

7. The time before the ceremony will be exciting, but not the most important part of your day

When I started out I tried to act like a wedding photographer. I’d wear a tie and creep about with a zoom lens. I’d arrive early to take photos of inanimate objects to try and create the most cliche galleries for my clients.

Editing a wedding at the computer one afternoon my eldest son, about 5 at the time, gasped “Look! A ghost bride”. It was a photo of an empty, droopy wedding dress hanging infront of a window. Dresses look better with people in them. Shoes look better with feet. Rings with fingers and perfume is for sniffing not photographing.

So when you’re getting ready I’ll be getting to know people. I’ll be capturing the emotion and nervousness and looking for the things that make your day unique.

From the ceremony onwards you’ll be surrounded by your favourite people. It’ll be one of the most fun, intense but enjoyable days of your life. Of course you’ll want memories of the preparation, but nobody needs 15 photos of someone brushing your hair.

Walking to the ceremony – where all the excitement and action starts!

8. You want more photos of your guests having fun than of you

Sure, you may want one or two nice photos of you for frames around the house. You might want one to give to your nan for Christmas. But you already know what you look like. Nobody wants to fill a wall in their living room with photos of themselves. Nobody normal anyway.

Your guests may have travelled half way around the world to be at your wedding in south Wales. They’ve bought a new outfit, a dress and a hat. They’ve booked two nights in a swanky hotel, had their hair done and bought you a gift. The least they can expect is a nice photo to be taken as a means of flattery and a thank you for their effort.

There’ll be parts of the day where you’ll be centre of attention and you’ll feature in the photos. It’s your wedding so you’ll be at the ceremony, speeches and a few photos alone. But the rest of the day I’m there behind you facing the other way. Or I’ll be in the next room or outside capturing things you may be missing. I’m looking for moments of your guests larking about and working hard to capture the people in a way you’ll want to remember them.

Photos of family and friends gain their value over time

Check out my post – “You won’t be the most important people on your wedding day” for more details on how I capture what I capture of who.

9. You’ll want to see the day’s colour and vibrancy in your photos

I love a black and white photo. The cutting contrast, the raw power of light and dark.

But weddings are a day of fun and colour and real people doing something very real. Shooting for black and white is a different artform and requires a different perspective and mindset.

Colour is just how I see and a simple processing with a simple tone curve is generally all I add. What comes out of camera and is what is delivered to you.

Of course after your wedding you’re free to do what you want with your photos. I’m happy if you want to make them all black and white for your house. I’m also here to help you with that – just shout if you want any or all of your photos converted.

Colourful Cardiff Wedding Photographers
Colour!

10. You want the reassurance of a professional taking care of your photos so your guests can focus on the fun

You’ve surely considered saving the costs of a photographer and buying some single use cameras instead. You might even have a friend with a camera who can take a few ‘snaps’ through the day.

On multiple occasions I’ve been invited to weddings as a guest only to be asked to ‘bring along my camera’. But I’m either relaxing, socialising and taking in the day or I’m scanning the room for laugher and trying to capture every moment. I’ve realised I can no longer do both.

So if the experience of your wedding to your friends is important, allow them to relax. Allow them to kick back and take in your wedding day with all of their senses.

Leaving the photography to a professional isn’t just about who’s holding the camera on the day. Afterwards there’s the process of downloading cards. Then sorting the photos, backing up (again and again). It may take days to sift through and choose the best photos. Then correcting and processing them. That’s all before presenting them in a way that you can view and appreciate them for the rest of your life.

It’s not having that regret on your 10th anniversary that this is all about. There’s no such thing as a cheap wedding photographer in South Wales. It’s about not having the guilt that you stressed out a friend who just wanted to party.

Let your guests relax and leave the photos to the pros

So, do you think you’ve found your photographer for your south Wales wedding?

So, you think you’ve found the best wedding photographer for your south Wales wedding?

Drop me a line right away to check my availability on your wedding date. I will respond with some more information about what you can expect from your photos and also let you see into some full galleries and experience a little of what my previous happy clients have to enjoy for the rest of their lives.

Hannah and Scott – Farmer’s Barn, Rosedew Farm
Helen & Mike – St Fagans, Cardiff
Farmer’s Barns, Rosedew Farm – Winter Wedding – Carly & Huw – South Wales Wedding Photography
South Wales Wedding Photographers – Alternative / Same Sex Wedding Newport – Janna & Kate
Alternative Wedding Photography Cardiff, South Wales – Eve & Liz’s Same Sex City Hall Wedding
Llanerch Vineyard South Wales Wedding Photography – Emily & Richard
Llanerch Vineyard Wedding Photography – Joy & Jon – South Wales Wedding Photographers
Nia & Nick – Preview Slideshow – Oxwich Bay Wedding Photography
Nicola & Matthew – Rustic and Fun Wedding at Rosedew Farm, Llantwit Major
Ruth & Dewi – Rosedew Farm – Farmer’s Barns
Katie & Phil – Farmer’s Barns, Rosedew Farm, Llantwit Major, South Wales Alternative Wedding Photographers
Louise & Bryn – Rosedew Farm, Llantwit Major, South Wales Alternative Wedding Photographers
Jade & Luke – Alternative Humanist Village Hall Wedding – Photography Cardiff Dinas Powys
Adele & James – Rosedew Farm – Alternative Wedding Photographers Wales
Izzy & Rhys – The Potted Pig – Alternative Wedding Photographers Cardiff
Wedding Photographers Cardiff – Charlotte & Jonathan sneak peek
Nat & Ben’s Slideshow at DeCourceys Manor Cardiff
Becky & Luke’s Slideshow from their Buckland Hall Wedding
Decourceys Wedding Photographers
Buckland Hall Wedding Photographers Cardiff Brecon Wales – Becky & Luke Sneaky Peek
Winter Wedding Photography Cardiff Photographers – Bethan & Alex’s Slideshow
Cardiff Wedding Photographers – Izzy & Rhys’ Slideshow
Cardiff Wedding Photographers Penarth Pavilion – Hollie & Owen
Cardiff Museum Wedding Photographers – Lowri & Chris
Wedding – Gemma & Nick – Cwrt Bleddyn – Cardiff Photographers
Rosedew Farm Wedding Photographers – Adele & James’ Slideshow
Adele & James’ Instamatic Photobooth Slideshow – Rosedew Farm Wedding Photographers
Penarth Wedding Photographers – Ani & Lee
Case Study – Rhiannon & Dave – Llanerch Vineyard Wedding Photographer
Glangrwyney Court Wedding Photographer – Natalie & Leon