Epic post incoming - it's a big one. The title will be made obvious about halfway through the images (plus there's a hefty clue in the banner image up there). Let's just say: that was a first for me! A unique experience and a LOT of fun.
Winding back a bit, I met with Soozii and Colin back in February for their engagement session in the New Forest (where has this year gone?!). Fast forward to the end of March and we were back in London for the main event, starting at Malmaison London in Clerkenwell where Soozii and her bridesmaids were getting ready, and getting their groove on. There was a lot of dancing in that hotel room (I loved it).
On from the Malmaison to meet Colin, his family and groomsmen (there's a lot of kilts here!) at the Hen & Chickens pub in Islington. When I got there, Colin may or may not have been writing his speech (I'm sure it was just final touches...) and in a pub that is known for and frequented by writers and actors, what better place to get some inspiration.
From the pub it was a short walk to the Union Chapel for their ceremony. This is an incredible place; a functioning church described on it's website as "Liberal, inclusive, non-hierarchical, and non-conformist", which couldn't be much better if you ask me. It just happens as well to be one of the top live music venues in London.
When I arrived, it's easy to see why it's so regarded, with spectacular high galleries looking down at the stage. It has a superb house PA, and really excellent lighting. An amazing place. I'm really keen to get back there for a gig!
Soozii made an emotional entrance to the sounds of bagpipes being played. It was a definite moment.
Following the ceremony and confetti, the guests jumped on a Routemaster to take them to the reception venue (another pub - The Queens in Crouch End), leaving just the bridal party to take on another form of transport, inspiring the title of this blog post in reference to The Jam!
That's right, we were going underground to make part of the journey to The Queens on the tube. Only one stop before the Routemaster came back for us, but what a sight it was. Full wedding party on the tube with some fairly epic shots presenting themselves along the way!
Don't forget to swipe the Oyster Card!
Back above ground, we found some more pretty interesting places to take in. Not least Soozii being invited into a bridal shop to become a living model in the window!
Whilst everyone else got settled at the pub, it was a chance for some shots of our amazing bride and groom together, so Colin & Soozii and myself went briefly walking around Crouch End looking for some opportunities.
We didn't need long. They completely 'get' the documentary approach, and when you're in an urban or city environment, you have to roll with whatever's available. As it is, I think the side streets and even the high street itself lent themselves well to some very cool urban portraits.
At the pub, food and drinks were served combining both Colin & Soozii's home roots. I can't imagine many times in my life where I'll have the opportunity to eat both Malaysian dishes and Haggis, Neeps and Tatties in the same sitting. Yum!
I couldn't help look at this and think of Only Fools & Horses. GoPros don't weigh much but even so!
The chandelier and wall lights were actually really dim, and this was by far one of the darkest rooms I've ever worked in! Pushed the cameras (and me!) to the max, particularly during the speeches.
Following the speeches, the evening party continued with one heck of a way to kick things off: a ceilidh. Keeping in mind the lighting challenges (not much light, dark panelled room) I set up a flash to capture proceedings and was so glad I did.
Combined with confetti cannons, the dancing was amazing! The closed in space meant everyone had to get involved and I found myself in the thick of the action from the start. A really incredible end to an amazing day. I was buzzing when I left and judging by how the party was revving up before the band, I know it was going to continue well into the wee hours. Awesome couple, awesome people, awesome day.