Charlemagne Lodge wedding photos – Jace & Sharnee’s sneak peek!

Hi guys,

Today, Amber, Holly, and I headed over to Tauranga to photograph Jace & Sharnee’s wedding.

It was a fantastic day – the rain from earlier in the week had well & truly cleared up – with glorious blue skies to be enjoyed by all!

This is a slightly more condensed “sneak peek” than usual – as we’re flying out to Sydney in one hour, so in a few days once we’re back I’ll pop a few more images up!
It’s also the reason that there are more of my own images than the others – because when you’re in a rush & looking for fav shots, you tend to gravitate to the ones you remember loving on the back of the camera display when you took them!

I love this next shot of Sharnee – such striking eyes!

Holly took this fantastic first kiss shot :)

Then we headed off for a few photos with the bridal party – we found some shade, which was very welcome – especially for the guys in their suits!

The water in the harbour was incredibly still & smooth – the blue just jumps out in these shots! I love Amber’s more zoomed in one – Sharnee’s eyes just sparkle in the sun :)

Finally, we headed to Omokoroa beach, for a bit of variation & sand… the light was perfect by this stage – take note… if you have your bridal party photos from 6 – 7pm you get GREAT late afternoon light!!!

Little Angelo was so shy in front of the cameras at the beginning of the day… as you can see, that changed!

It was a fantastic day – thanks for having us along to share a part in it!

Isaac, Amber, & Holly :)

In which Isaac and Amber had a grand adventure, and Holly came too.

Hi guys,

Some of you already know Holly… but for those who don’t.. an introduction :)

She’s been working with us for over a year now (although there was a 6 month stint just before Christmas where she was traveling the US & Europe and we missed her terribly!)

Anyway – technically, on the pricelist, Holly is the “lighting assistant” – she’s there to help out with holding things & knows how to work & set up our lighting gear.

But she’s so much more than that.

First & foremost – a photographer. When Holly isn’t holding lights (which is about 95 % of the wedding day) she’s shooting.
This presents an interesting challenge – as Amber and I usually have what we like to think of as the 2 “best” angles…. which in turn means Holly needs to think outside the square and shoot something totally different. Which is why we love her shots so much – because they’re always from a cool, unique angle.

Here’s a few of her shots from Kat & Simon’s wedding in Pauanui last Friday…

As you can see – she is hugely talented as a photographer in her own right!

Second… Holly is a very good light tester. This makes Amber happy, because it means she doesn’t have to get in front of the camera.
It maybe doesn’t make Holly quite as happy, but she never complains!

Thirdly.. a model!
Holly has come along a few times to model – once for our NZIPP group on a workshop day of shooting, and once for a bridal shoot that we did a while back :)

Finally – Holly is learning the process of editing the images, which is a great way to grow as a photographer – as you begin to edit your own work, you can see areas for improvement – and it has been cool having her in the office this week, showing her the ropes.

So there you have it… our so-much-more-than-a-lighting-assistant, who works wonders every weekend :)

Thanks for all your hard work Holly – we really appreciate everything you do, and your shots just keep getting better & better!
xoxo Isaac & Amber.

In which Kat & Simon have a wedding… sneak peek! Pauanui wedding photos

Yesterday, we traveled up to Pauanui – where we caught up with the lovely Kat & Simon.

I’ll preclude this post by mentioning that yes Holly came along too, and yes, her shots were fantastic. So much so, that she’s getting her own blog post – maybe tomorrow. Or maybe later. But soon. And there’ll be more of Kat & Simon’s photos in that one.

Anyway – we arrived. There were clouds – which made us happy. Then they went away and left bright blue skies – which at least reassured us that Murphy’s law is still well and truly in control of the universe. Then the clouds returned for their ceremony & photo shoot on the beach – hurrah!!

The boys were getting ready at Simon’s parents – right by the airfield. This was because Simon’s dad has a plane – hence photos with the plane. I love that you can fly places & taxi right to your front door – awesome!

I also loved the fact that the guys were dressed in shirts, shorts & jandals – sensible decision when you are getting married on the beach, in summer. Much more comfortable than 3 piece suits, for sure! The guys weren’t afraid to play up to the camera a bit either..

Then it was off to the girls, where Kat & bridesmaids were getting ready in a lovely apartment building – filled with all the good kinds of light & quirky bits that photographers like. The girls had jandals too, again – good decision, as anyone who has walked on the beach in heels before will know.

Kat’s fascinator (and the bridesmaid’s hairpieces too) was fantastic – so classic & elegant!
The girls weren’t afraid of playing up a little for the camera either..

Just before we headed out the door to the ceremony, we had the chance for a few shots in the cool staircase of the apartments – I find it interesting that although we were shooting totally different angles (Amber was down the bottom, I was up top) and different zooms, we both went for framing with negative space at the top!

We caught up with celebrant Marilyn Holmes – who does beautiful ceremonies, and Kat & Simon’s was gorgeous. Very personal, and real.
I don’t usually include shots of “signing the register” in my blog posts, but something about this one grabs me & it just had to go in…

We headed down for some shots with the bridal party, beginning with the rocks. Punchy black & whites are great for these kind of conditions – it really brings the contrast in the skies out.

The thing which really struck me about Kat & Simon was that we didn’t really need to direct anything – they were just naturally looking at each other, stealing kisses, and all we really needed to do was keep shooting!

We then wandered along to the dunes, where the fluffy grass things made for a nice soft foreground (I’m sure Amber will berate me for not knowing the actual name of said fluffy things) – and then finished up down by the Pohutakawa trees & bridge.

Enjoy the photos – and keep an eye out for the “Holly special” blog post soon, with her shots from Kat & Simon’s day :)

One quick one from Simon & Kat’s Pauanui wedding today

Hey guys,

Just got back from Simon & Kat’s wedding up in Pauanui – what a stunning couple they were! So photogenic, and just a pleasure to work with :) I think what made it even better was that they were just so … for want of a better word… in love. It meant that we didn’t really need to direct anything, as they were always looking at each other, sneaking kisses, all we really did was show up & take pictures!

Proper sneak peek coming tomorrow – but I just couldn’t resist playing with this image a bit tonight, so thought I’d share… mainly because I’m impatient!

I really like the tones & narrow band of focus in this one.

Stay tuned for more soon.

Just a random one for the evening…

I’m sitting here editing some of Chris & Dairne’s photos, and had a play with this one… I decided on a really grainy black & white – I wanted a bit of a gritty, film feel to it.

It’s not often that I share the little random things I’m playing with… we get so caught up in wedding > sneak peek; wedding > sneak peek, and so on… that sometimes it’s nice to just share some of the things I’m playing with through the week. In between the coffees, cans of V, and loud music – some cool editing gets done!

I love this shot – especially that you can’t really see any faces, but you right away get a feel for what is happening.

Matt & Janine’s Dargaville wedding photos – sneak peek!

Hi guys,

On Saturday, we made the trek up to Dargaville, to photograph Matt & Janine’s wedding.

It was an early start for us – about 6.30am from Auckland – so that we could arrive with plenty of time for location checks prior to starting.
Well, we did all those – found some cool spots, and then it was off for a quick coffee… or not. Waitangi day (apparently) means nothing is open and coffee is scarce indeed!

So we made do with “V” – and headed over to see the boys.

Then around to the girls – where we caught up with Janine, looking gorgeous in her dress!
We were also pleasantly surprised to see Holly, who was bridesmaid for Janine – and one of our brides from a while back :)

Their ceremony was beautiful – it was really special to have Janine’s dad & Matthew’s dad (who are both ministers) sharing an equal part in leading the service… what an honour to be able to have your parents officiate your marriage ceremony :)

Afterwards, we headed into Dargaville town for some photos with the bridal party. We planned to go to the beach too, but decided to leave that for last – as it was so hot & sunny that shade was definitely in order.
I love some of the cool old buildings & textured walls!

Then it was off to Baylys beach, where we dodged surfing competitions, “beach bonanzas”, and other general Saturday afternoon beach traffic – and managed to find some clear space!
(important, so that we don’t have to spend forever photoshopping people out of the background in every shot!)

Enjoy the photos – thanks for having us along to share a part in your day!

Isaac & Amber

Alan & Sam’s Sarnia Park wedding photos – sneak peek!

Hi guys,

On Friday, we headed out to Sarnia Park in Cambridge to photograph Alan & Sam’s wedding.

We kicked off the day with the boys’ getting ready shots over in Matamata, where they proved quite adept at “tie tying” – then headed across to the girls, who were getting ready in the bridal suite at Sarnia Park.

We had time for some cool shots downstairs with Sam & her bridesmaids before all the guests arrived – there are just so many options, it’s fantastic for us!

After their ceremony, we headed around the grounds for some shots with the bridal party – including… GOLF CARTS :)
**these are my secret love – I think my next car could well be a golf cart**
They managed to get themselves, 3 bridesmaids, and 3 groomsmen all into two carts – great effort!

It was an awesome day – thanks for having us along to share a part in it!

Isaac & Amber

Alan & Sam tried to get these two holding hands for a photo. Halfway there!

The Top 10 of 2009 – Vote For Your Favourite Wedding Photos!

Hi guys,

2009 was a busy year for us – over 50 weddings, countless amazing images, and super happy clients!

We’ve put together a little selection of our favourite 10 images from the year… which was an amazingly difficult task!
Obviously, we can’t include a shot from every wedding – but these are a few which stood out to us. If there is a particular photo of ours that you think we’ve missed & deserves to be in the top 10, send us an email & we’ll include it.

So there it is – vote for your favourite image by posting a comment, with your name & the number / name of the image you’re voting for – and help us decide (just for fun!) the “2009 Wedding image of the year”.

To spice things up a bit, we’ll give a framed enlargement of the winning photo to the couple who’s photo is voted #1.

Only one vote per person please – we’ll monitor the email addresses / IP addresses so no ballot stuffing!

Get voting – closing date for votes is 5pm Sunday 28th Feb.


In no particular order, here are the images…

#1 – Colin & Nicky in the Britomart Train Station – they were so positive about the rainy weather on the day, and we headed for an indoor location… without a permit. So after being chased out once by security, we managed to get this shot. I love the backlighting which outlines their faces, and the cool colour tones.

#2 – Rebecca at Woodlands – this was actually a quick grab shot at the very end of the bridal party shoot – Rebecca was walking down this muddy track all by herself – I just love the combination of the unlikely environment and the fact she’s all by herself. I find this quite a haunting image, and it has stuck with me all year.

#3 – Sarah & Ian on a misty dune at Karekare beach. Epic. This looks straight out of Lord of the Rings for me – majestic, misty, almost ominous! These guys came all the way from Canada to be married in beautiful Aotearoa – and to me this encapsulates our country.

#4 – Maureen pirouettes in front of a conveniently placed “pirouette” sign! This wall was out the back of one of our photo locations, and – like many of our favourite shots, was almost an afterthought. I like the punchy colours, and obviously how the text on the sign reflects the action in the shot. It sums up Maureen & Rino’s wedding – urban & funky, while still being elegant & graceful.

#5 – Kevin hopes the rain will clear for the wedding that afternoon (it didn’t). There are many elements about this image I like – the symmetry of the deck, the reflection on the wet wood from the flash coming in from the side, the moody clouds… but most of all, I love the beam on Kevin’s face – the fact that it’s raining, and he didn’t let it phase him one bit.

#6 – Sarah & Ian decide to get right into the waterfall during their wedding shoot at Karekare. OK – we know that there are 2 of Sarah & Ian’s shots in our top 10… but when you get into a waterfall on your wedding day, you’re allowed to be one of the photographer’s favourites! This is just an epic, adventurous photo!

#7 – Larissa holds back the tears as her dad walks her down the aisle. This for me, is one of the most emotional captures of my year. I love the expression on her face – it’s so real. To me, this sums up what weddings are all about, and I just love it.

#8 – Matthew & Sarem at Woodlands. A while back, we were looking for a photo to go onto a wedding canvas montage alongside the word “love” – this was it.

#9 – Glen & Amanda at Woodlands. Again – this image just speaks to me about love. I like that it’s almost a bit cheeky, they just couldn’t stop smiling the whole day, and I really get a sense of that from this shot.

#10 – James & Terianne at Vilagrad. I submitted this image for a print competition a while ago and the judges loved it – they commented on the significance of the wine barrels representing the maturing of a relationship that is marriage… I dunno – I just think this is a beautiful photo of an amazing couple!

Phil & Heidi’s Mangawhai Heads wedding photos – sneak peek!

Hi guys,

On Saturday we made the trip up to Mangawhai Heads to photograph Phil & Heidi’s wedding.

We arrived to a gorgeous, sunny day – perfect for a beach wedding! They had hired a bach, and with the guys downstairs & girl upstairs, it made the getting ready shots nice & easy – all in one location!

While photographing the boys getting ready, the groomsmen spied an empty bath & decided they wanted to do a “Cool Runnings” photo – awesome!
Having such an easy to work with bridal party always makes for great shots!

After their beach ceremony, we headed down to the rocks at the end of the bay, where we got some great dramatic shots as the clouds rolled in – and then finished up by the old green boat shed, which gave a neat texture as a background.

We headed back to their reception at Milestone Cottages, where they had a marquee set up, and the band was soundchecking & getting ready to roll!
A few more quick shots in the gardens there, and we left them to it :)

We went for fish & chips with Amber’s aunty in Mangawhai – and on our way back home, we stuck our heads into the reception again – and managed to get a some great sunset photos!

It was a fantastic day – enjoy this little sneak peek of what’s to come!

Isaac & Amber