Wedding; Men’s Abbey; Caen France


Wedding; Caen France
Wedding; Caen France

We arrived at the Men’s Abbey in Caen and the wedding service was almost over. We stood near the back to for great Abbey, as the priest pronounced the happy couple husband and wife, and a great cheer was heard from the guest. As the couple were hugged and congratulated by parents and family the guest filled out to the front doors and waited patiently. As the couple left the church arm and arm the family and friends let out another big cheer. The wedding photographers were nowhere to be seen I am not sure what photos they would have taken, but I love this one. The first kiss on the steps of the church, the family and friends showering them with rose pedals.

The Men’s Abbey in Caen has a long history, founded in 1067 by William the Conquer it is described as a  Norman Romanesque Church and I was left wondering how many generations of this couple’s family had been married here.

Inside the Church is a display of photos. The citizens of Caen took shelter there during the World War ll bombings.  It was one of the few buildings left standing in the city. You can see from one of the earlier blog posts, the bombs, unfortunately, did not always avoid the churches.

The visit to the Abbey was a thoughtful one, many of the Churches we have visited have been like museums, with audio guides detailing the art and telling us of the history. While we are aware of that they are a Sacred Destination for many today we witnessed the role that many play in lives of their congregation. Each day brings us something new and wonderful.


still life and wedding photography

wedding shoes
wedding shoes

The wedding shoe image was taken some time ago, just recently I pulled it from the archive to work with Nik Software, experiment with different processes, finishes and textures, all in an attempt to develop style and album options that will appeal to both myself and to potential clients.

I have a lot of respect for Wedding Photographers, they commit to a high energy, long demanding day, to capture moments that are both important to the bride and groom as well their family, and in some cases moments that few will actually see.  They are attuned to the emotions around them, without being caught up in them. Always on the look out for those family interactions that can be caught in an image without actually interrupting the flow of the day or the emotion of the minute. In some cases it is the photographer can be the “savior” of  the moment.

I have yet to meet a wedding photographer that didn’t have in their bag, a packet of pins, a role of duct tape, gum, kleenex, and just about anything else that is small and might be needed in the case of an emergency.  They can play with children and keep a group of 20 focused to get family pictures in the midst of the chaos and visiting that everyone would rather be doing.

But, for me, the most fascinating, the wedding photographer on top of all the people and activity, will walk around all day  also keeping track of the fine details that the bride has spent hours anguishing over; making sure that all those details are also photographed.  The detail images are  then processed and presented in an album that helps to pull the whole day together. A book of memories that will last a lifetime.

Happy Anniversary to Karen and Jon,

Karen and Jon’s wedding day

I wanted to take time out of the Camino blogging to wish Karen and Jon a happy anniversary, may you remember the joy and magic of your wedding day.

Jeff and JoAnna’s wedding day battle!

water fight on wedding day
Jeff and JoAnna’s wedding day battle

The title might have been a little misleading, but even a water fight is a little unexpected on the typical wedding day! They had fun, and my camera gear stayed dry, two very important points.  This had to have been the most fun I have had at a wedding in a very long time.

My wish for Jeff and JoAnna, may all their battles/fights be this much fun.

Joanna and Jeff, Thank-you

Joanna is a wonderful photographer, and designer, here she has taken two of our favourite photos and created a beautiful thank-you card. As a photographer her work features landscapes, wildlife, rodeo and ranching subject. check out her work at Joanna Lynn Photography 

JoAnna and Jeff, a quiet time after the wedding

JoAnna and Jeff, enjoying a quiet moment after the wedding…..

Jeff and JoAnna enjoy a quiet moment after the wedding ceremony.  Earlier in the day it looked like it might rain, but the afternoon was beautiful and warm, a little breezy, but no mosquitos! It was a beautiful day for a wedding. The bridge is too high to actually dangle your feet in the water, but it is a nice place to sit. The kids were close by watching and waiting, you can see the shadows on the left.


JoAnna and Jeff, up the creek after the wedding!

JoAnna and Jeff, up the creek after the wedding, aug 3, 2012

Sorry I couldn’t resist the title…..

I was lucky to meet JoAnna through a mutual friend and fellow photographer.  JoAnna and Jeff were married on Aug 3, 2012 and they asked if I would photograph the wedding. I am grateful for the opportunity to meet their families, and to spend the day with them. I am hoping to get all the photos done this week.  I have to say this is one of my favourite photos.

Married at St. Paul’s Anglican Church June 9, 2012

I was happy to assist and photograph at the wedding,  while the weather was a little grey, the day was a happy one for everyone who attended the wedding. I don’t think anyone looked happier than the groom!

Best Man: Young People as part of a Wedding

This young man had the cutest face, even when he wasn’t happy.  I was lucky to be the second shooter at this wedding, because I could stand back a little and catch people a little more relaxed and a little les guarded and without their “cheese” smile.  The little gentleman was a natural in front of the camera as long as he didn’t have to sit a specific way, in a specific spot, with specific people! What can I say, he didn’t like doing the group shots!

I don’t think anyone likes doing the group/family shots, they can look posed, and oh so 80’s! But for some families they are a must, the whole family is usually at the big event, everyone is dressed up and looking their best.  In fact some people clean up so well, you don’t even recognized with all the “spit and polish” a phrase my dad likes to use when he sees people all dressed up.  He learned to polish his shoes the old fashion way.

Group shots, and a few thoughts about planning your group shots. Think about and talk to your photographer about the group and family shots you want and that are important to you. How much time do you have, who will be with whom, how many different groups, and where they will be taken.

If you have young people as part of your wedding party, or expected as part of the family photos talk to them ahead of time, let them know what is expected, and how much time it will take.  Just like your friends who have never been a part of a wedding, they need to know what the plan is and possibly what the reward is. For us, once the group/family/portraits are done then we can go on to the reception and the celebration, what will be their reward?

Introduce your photographer to the young people, ahead of time, possibly at the rehearsal.  Let the kids know that it is alright that this person is going to be working with you and them to get some special photos.  Often we tell our children not to talk to strangers, so having a photographer/stranger in the crowd who is friendly, chatty, and asking them to move here, or there, look this way or that is a bit of a mixed message that should be discussed ahead of time. Help them learn safe boundaries around this new person, again so they understand what is expected.

Snacks and drinks are a good idea, for everyone but especially the kids. Routines are broken during the wedding day, and we don’t get to eat, drink or sleep as we usually would. This can be disastrous for some kids, even some adults, so plan ahead.  Keep the snacks clean, drinks clear or light, and hand wipes handy!

Weddings are long days for all of us, especially old folks and kids, plan for the best, prepare for the worst, and remember that 20 years or so, when you are attending a special event for that very special young person, you will have a great picture to give them as a memory, and sometimes the funnier the face the better!