Single image – part of a series on the story behind the photograph.

I was at a hotel recently and got to observe the photographer at a wedding taking place, it’s always interesting being able to sit back and watch someone else doing this job. The photographer was rushing around taking photographs of everything going on, what I noticed was he didn’t seem to pause and look for the moment or spend time on composition.

I spend a lot of time away from weddings people watching, I can sit in a coffee shop for hours and just watch people talking. I do this at weddings too, trying to anticipate what they are going to do, waiting for the moment. Sometimes I might spend a few minutes just waiting for the right moment to press the shutter. I don’t run around looking for the action as by the time you see it you’ve missed it. This is where having a lot of experience comes in as I can often read the signs that something is going to happen. I’m also looking for photographs that tell the story rather than just capturing what I first see. The composition is also very important to me, capturing a great moment isn’t enough – the image needs strong composition too.

This is an image from during the wedding ceremony, the parents all sat together. I’d been watching them as they started to look emotional, then one lifted a hanky to wipe away a tear followed by the two others. I really like the lady on the right smiling at them as it tells the viewer these are tears of joy rather than anything else.  There is a lot I like about this photograph, they are all wiping tears from their right eye and have great expressions.