What a wonderful time we had at Jennifer and Daniel's Manchester Town Hall wedding! it was a truly special day! This was our first time photographing a wedding at the Town Hall and we loved every second of it!
The day was full of special moments, with Jen getting ready at the Radisson Blu Edwardian (the old Free Trade Hall) with her bridal party and family. Our bride also very nearly received two different bouquets as the hotel concierge delivered the wrong wedding's bouquet of flowers to our room!
Jen and Daniel had wanted two photographers on their special day, so took full advantage of our double photographer package for their day. This allowed Emma to meet up with Daniel and the groomsmen in their room at The Hilton Hotel in Deansgate where the guys were all very chilled and relaxed prior to the afternoon's civil ceremony.
As wedding venues go, Manchester Town Hall is absolutely outstanding. With its Neo-gothic architecture, this capitol building provides breathtaking scenes for photographs with idyllic locations such as the grand entrance hall, the gorgeous stone staircases which leads up to the main ceremony room, and then also the great hall which is the largest, grandest reception room of all.
Having two photographers, we were able to best utilise the many vantage spots of the remarkable wedding venue - the perfect example being for when Jen walked down the aisle with her arms linked with her dad and her bridesmaids in a line behind - bouquets in hand, Emma located to the top balcony which overlooked the ceremony. We were therefore able to capture a stunning shot of this wedding moment with all family and friends looking on at the bride walking down the aisle to her groom.
The ceremony itself was surprisingly very intimate considering the grandeur of the hall and the number of eyes all looking on at the Bride and Groom as they read their vows and exchanged their wedding rings. Once the marriage was sealed with a first kiss it was all time to celebrate with confetti down at the town hall entrance followed with some group shots and some very urban Manchester city centre portraits where we ventured to Central Library and the arches at St Peter's Square for some natural, intimate moments captured for our newlywed couple.
It was then back in to the hall for eating and drinking in the Great Hall where Jen and Daniel met up with their guests over drinks in the foyer before making their grand entrance to their awaiting wedding party. The day was topped off with some great speeches followed up with the dance music of Peter Lockwood DJ who had the dance floor filled and partying into the night.
We really enjoyed our first wedding as Manchester Town Hall wedding photographers and can not wait to return soon!
Why not get in touch to chat about your Manchester Town Hall Wedding?
WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY BY STEPHEN MCGOWAN AT MANCHESTER TOWN HALL
We recently had the pleasure of photographing Priya and Saurav's pre-wedding engagement ceremony at their house in Cheadle before photographing some intimate portraits of the newly engaged couple at the newly opened Oddfellows on the Park at Bruntwood Park.
The newlywed couple exchanged their wedding rings in a family filled living room which played host to their ring exchanging ceremony. Family members of all ages looked on as Saurav went down on one knee to place the ring on Priya's finger.
Once the ceremony had come to an end the family gathered in the back garden for the cake cutting. The cake itself was delicious and was readily passed around for all to try! Straight afterwards we were then treated to traditional dancing which was utterly mesmerising and great fun!
Oddfellows wedding venue
After the family celebrations had taken place at Priya and Saurav's house, we headed over to the brand spanking new Oddfellows on the Park wedding venue for some portraits of the lovely couple. The venue has been newly renovated for weddings by the Oddfellows team who began over at Oddfellows Chester. What was once Bruntwood Hall and home to stuff merchant John Douglas and his wife in 1861, through to the present day being used as a wedding venue - this building's uses have been diverse and very interesting.
We really can not wait to come back for our first Oddfellows at the Park wedding!
why not get in touch to chat about your oddfellows at the park wedding?
Wedding Photography by Stephen McGowan at Oddfellows on the Park
Lake District Wedding Photography
We always look forward to a good lake district wedding and so we couldn't wait to photograph Katrina and Matthew's big day over at Cragwood Country House Hotel overlooking the beautiful Lake Windermere. It's a little omen we have for whenever we seem to visit Cumbria it seems to rain, and today was to be no different! Thankfully we had the rain in the morning and and had the afternoon to enjoy some very bright spells of sun which was perfect for spending it in the gorgeous gardens at this idyllic lake district hotel. From the moment we stepped into the lobby of the hotel and warmly greeted by the lovely staff - we knew we were in for a great day.
I met Katrina upstairs in her bridal suite with her bridesmaids. Make up had already been fully applied (It was an early one for the girls as they had booked in a 6am appointment with the make up artist!). Being so prepared way ahead of schedule, the girls were fully relaxed when I met up with them. The champagne was out and in full flow which helped calm any nerves!
Katrina's Callista bridal dress looked absolutely perfect on her! it was great to share a wedding with our good friends at Edith & Winston Bridalwear who did a brilliant job finding Kat's dream dress for her special day.
With the rain looming in the morning the couple exchanged vows in the ceremony room of the hotel. However, by the time the wedding ceremony was over we were outside for confetti throwing, bouquet tossing and a couple of group shots. The sun was out to join us in celebrating Kat and Matt's day with us!
Lake District Country Hotels
It is no doubt that this manor is highly looked after and gardens attentively maintained. Cragwood Country House Hotel is owned by the Lake District Country House Hotel group who also own Brierywood and Merewood Country House Hotels, so this little gem of a wedding venue is in very good company.
Supplier Friends Involved
Why not get in touch to chat about your cragwood country house hotel wedding?
algarve wedding photography
We are so very lucky to be able to visit such gorgeous, exotic locations as part of our job, such as this incredible VilaMoura wedding in the Algarve Portugal for Amy and Lee. When we met up with them they were staying in their luxury holiday home villa Vilamarques, only a short drive from Faro airport and ideally situated being only a stones throw from VilaMoura marina and the golden Portuguese coastline which we were sure to explore for some signature wedding portraits.
Vilamarques wedding day
I met up with Amy in the morning, the bridal party were in full swing with make up out on the terrace. Champagne was in full flow - as was the rain! (eek!). The forecast looked good for the afternoon though (lots of sun) meaning spirits were still high as the girls were getting ready. Amy's Justin Alexander dress from 7th Heaven Bridal looked absolutely stunning as it hung against the white washed walls of the Portuguese villa. As the girls were getting ready I went down to the games room (yes - a games room!) to meet up with Lee and the lads who were enjoying their 'on tap' Superbock provided by Vilamarques. You could tell excitement was in the air (and in the heated pool) as half of Lee's family soaked up the atmosphere by playing in the pool.
The rain had cleared, the sun was out and the make up was on. Bouquets were all at the ready, wedding rings were with the best man and ushers were fully groomed. Despite bridesmaids being temporarily locked out of the villa and almost missing their cue to walk down the aisle, all was fine! After what was very moving and emotional ceremony and exchanging of vows on the open lawn of vilamarques we jumped into the taxi and headed down to VilaMoura beach, praia da falesia for some gorgeous intimate coastline portraits by Hotel Tivoli Marina.
Natural style documentary photography
Once arriving back at the villa with our married couple the guests were treated to a quiz designed by Amy and Lee to test their knowledge of the newlyweds. This then led us nicely into the speeches which brought up some very natural, genuine emotions for everybody involved. From laughs, alcoholic shots and embarrassing photos to embraced hugs and moments of tears; the speeches had it all. All of which which were captured on film.
Amy and Lee had their first dance downstairs in the villa's media room (yes vilamarques also boasts a home cinema room!). The room was converted into the perfect dance floor for Amy and Lee's first dance before the guests joined and we partied into the night!
Supplier Friends Involved
Destination wedding photography
We are often asked by couples who love our style whether we can join them to photograph their destination wedding. We love travelling, we travel all over and would love to photograph your wedding abroad.
why not get in touch to chat about your destination wedding?
Natural wedding photography at Chateau Rhianfa
When Frances and Matthew let me know that they were getting married at Chateau Rhianfa in Anglesey, I must admit - my heart skipped a beat! What a stunning wedding venue to get married! This Grade II listed victorian villa perched overlooking the Menai Strait with the Snowdonia Mountains as a backdrop, how spectacular! Needless to say that the opportunities for gorgeous landscape portraits of the bride and groom were endless.
The morning was bright and sunny as I met Frances and her bridesmaids in the castle's coach house where the make-up was already underway and the champagne was in full flow. It was lovely to see the bridal party so chilled and relaxed before the ceremony with the bride, bridesmaids and Frances' flower-girl all in high spirits making for some lovely natural photographs throughout the morning. Once the girls were all made up we went across the estate to the bridal suite for finishing touches and portraits. Matt had a painting of the Menai bridge as a present for Frances who absolutely loved it. Afterwards we went to the wine cellar with Matt and the boys to capture some unique portraits. The cellar is used to fortify the manor wine and made the perfect backdrop for our portraits.
Grade II listed villa wedding venue
The ceremony took place in the stunning banqueting hall at the castle. Furnished in dark wood and large tower like windows, the setting was ready for Frances to walk down the aisle, exchange vows with her groom and seal the deal with a kiss. After the ceremony we went for a stroll in the mansion's gardens where we captured some intimate natural shots of the newlyweds in the grounds on the estate. We were blessed with some stunning views and scenery and I felt truly grateful and quite humbled to be a Chateau Rhianfa wedding photographer.
We then walked down to the rocky shore of the Menai Strait, again another gorgeous view was on offer for us to photograph our newly married couple in front of. Once the sun began to set were then lucky enough to capture a stunning silhouette sunset photograph of the Frances and Matt overlooking the water with a gorgeous pink sky.
Once back into the banqueting hall and it was time for the first dance, the band had everyone up on their feet in no time and we had a full on party taking us through into the night!
We absolutely loved photographing Frances and Matt's wedding here and hope you enjoy the images below. If you're currently looking for Chateau Rhianfa wedding photographer, why not drop us a message?
Why not get in touch with us to chat about your Chateau Rhianfa wedding?
WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY BY STEPHEN MCGOWAN AT CHATEAU RHIANFA
Park hall hotel wedding photography
Well we're now into 2017 and fully getting into the swing of wedding season. We met up with the lovely Rachel and Matt for their pre-wedding shoot at Tatton Park, and from our shoot we could tell that we'd be in for a great day of photography for their wedding. In a roundabout way; having visited the venue previously we knew that this Medieval themed venue would be a playground for our camera skills. I met up with Rachel in the morning who was getting ready with her make up artist in the bridal suite. The wedding dress and bridesmaid dresses were all hung up neatly on the four poster bed, prosecco and flutes were out and the day was well underway. At the same time Emma was down the hallway of the manor house with Matt and the boys documenting the relaxed and very laid back antics of the lads in the morning.
Natural and relaxed documentary wedding photography
The light up letters provided by Brides Little Helper perfectly finished off the decorations for the ceremony room and gave off a lovely warm orange glow at the end of the aisle where Matt and his best man waited anxiously. But it was well worth the wait as Rachel approached dressed in her gorgeous Bethany Hannah bridal dress, linked arm in arm with her dad as one Charlotte Mills bridal shoe would slide slowly in front of the other down the aisle.
The ceremony itself was gorgeous; being in the medieval banqueting hall it was full of character - from the extravagant grand hall ceiling draped chandeliers to the fine detail of the candles lining the aisle, the ceremony hall was fully dressed and looked a stunning venue for Rachel and Matthew to say their vows in front of the family and friends. The hall itself was nicely lit to photograph in; having fast lenses and camera equipment meant we were able to capture clear intimate moments at the correct exposure - common practice for our photography.
After the ceremony and the confetti throwing I whisked Rachel (bouquet in hand) and Matt off for some quick portraits around the grounds and also for some stylish carpark warehouse shots before returning to capture the cocktail hour with the guests. We were also treated to an acoustic set by Paul Thornton acoustic guitarist who serenaded the banqueting hall during the wedding breakfast.
Medieval themed wedding
We stayed with Rachel and Matthew through until after their first dance documenting the alcohol fuelled dancing of their guests on the dancefloor. The newlyweds also asked whether we could possibly set up a special sparkler exit photograph with their guests in front of the medieval hall. Afterwards we were also back out again for a stunning flash lit night time gazebo photograph to finish off the day; and of course Rachel and Matt smashed it out of the ballpark!
Why not get in touch to chat about your wedding day?
2o16 - WHAT A YEAR!
It's been a whirlwind of a year here at Stephen McGowan Photography! We've visited some absolutely stunning wedding venues, become friends with some amazing brides and grooms, met up and spent the day with some awesome wedding suppliers and had the absolute privilege of being a part of special wedding days throughout the year.
Not ONLY this, but 2016 also saw us as FINALISTS for the North West Wedding Industry Awards 2017!
This year has also seen us recommended as Top 100 UK Wedding Photographers, along with winning March's Wedding Photograph of the month and well in contention to winning wedding photograph of the year 2016! (fingers crossed!)
We've also had TWO of our weddings featured in 2017's Cheshire Bride Magazine (out in January) and have had numerous features on Brides Up North, one of the UK’s biggest wedding blogs.. oh and a front page feature for America's plus-sized bride magazine, Pretty Pear Bride! Like I said, it's all been a bit of a whirlwind of a year!
North west award winning photographers
Below is a selection of what we have been up to this year. There's at least one shot from each wedding we've been a part of this year as wedding photographers. We like to capture the moments that matter, the ones you want to look back on time and time again - so hopefully this will come across in the photographs below.
Also, if you like what you see, why not get in touch with us to chat about you wedding day?