Lisa Webb Photography – Shropshire Wedding Photographer » Alternative Wedding Photography

Humanist ceremonies are non-legal, personal ceremonies. They’re an alternative to having a civil ceremony, just because you’re not religious doesn’t mean you have to have a civil ceremony on your wedding day. I’ve been to many different types of weddings, and the ceremonies that are the most memorable to me are the humanist ceremonies. If the idea of getting married in church feels a bit hypocritical to you because you’re not religious but you think civil ceremonies are boring, then don’t worry, there’s an alternative! A humanist ceremony is the perfect choice for any couple who don’t want religion to play a part in their wedding, and who want a really personal, chilled out ceremony. Keep reading to find out more about humanist ceremonies and why I think they’re brilliant!

You can get married anywhere

This to me is one of the biggest plus sides to having a humanist ceremony. Unfortunately at the moment in England and Wales you can’t legally get married unless it’s under a permanent structure that’s licensed for marriage. I hate rules, especially rules as silly as that! If you opt to have a humanist ceremony for your wedding day, you can get married wherever you like. This can be in a field, in your living room, a village hall, the possibilities are endless. This is why many wedding venues have pavilions outside, so that couples can get married “outside”, unfortunately you still have to be under the pavilion for the ceremony to be legal. Humanist ceremonies aren’t yet legal in England and Wales so if you do want a beautiful back garden wedding then you just need to nip to the registry office before or after your wedding day to make it legally binding. You can have a very simple service at a registry office for as little as £48, so it doesn’t have to cost the earth to have an extra ceremony. I actually see this as a big benefit because it means….

You get to have two ceremonies!

To make your marriage legal you just need two witnesses and some signed paperwork. This can be as big or as little a deal as you’d like it to be. You could just take along a few people who are very close to you for the civil ceremony and go out for a nice meal and drinks afterwards. Or you could fully embrace it and ask everyone to come along to both ceremonies, it’s totally up to you!

Your ceremony can be really personal

With civil ceremonies you can add your own vows into the ceremony however you will still need to repeat a few things your registrar tells you to say to make the ceremony legal. With a humanist ceremony, because it’s not a legal service you don’t have to add in the legal bit, the service can be totally personalised to you as a couple. Your celebrant will get to know you both usually by getting you both to fill out a questionnaire all about the two of you and your relationship. They will then turn this into a personalised service all about the two of you. There are also no rules for the vows you say to each other so you can write your own vows which can be as gushy or funny as you want!

I think humanist ceremonies are fab and I always love getting to shoot them! If you’re thinking of having a humanist ceremony then I would highly recommend you go ahead with one!

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floral hall wedding

“Thank you so much for these! We love them! We’ve gone through them a few times and keep seeing new ones that we love. Looking forward to sharing them with the rest of our family and friends. They really capture the friendly essence of the day and we’re really happy with them. You’ve caught everyone in some great moments- laughing, dancing, chatting, crying- the lot!  We like the casual style but also like that we got some more formal ones with family groups in that will become part of our family history and will be lovely to look back on. Thank you for everything, we will be sure to recommend you.”
Summer Floral Hall Wedding

Hannah and Ed got married back in August at Floral Hall in Tunstall, Stoke-on-Trent. Floral Hall is a goreous DIY wedding venue, surrounded by the beautiful Victoria Park, it was such a great choice for Hannah and Ed’s relaxed, DIY wedding day. I first met Hannah and Ed at their engagement shoot that we did at The Roaches, this shoot was so much fun despite the insane fog and eventual rain! I knew from this shoot that we were going to get along brilliantly and I was going to have a lovely time photographing them both on their wedding day. To start the day I headed straight to Floral Hall to photograph the set up that Hannah and Ed had worked so hard to put together. As with all village hall type weddings, there’s a lot of DIY involved and therefore a lot of friends and family are required to pull it all together. DIY weddings are always my favourite, there are so many little personal touches and I think it’s really lovely when friends and family all band together to get involved with making the day a success. I was blown away by everything Hannah and Ed had done, from the table settings to the bunting to all the little signs outside and inside their venues, it looked absolutely stunning!

After I’d captured their venue details at Floral Hall I went straight to their ceremony to photograph Hannah arriving at Werrington Methodist church. The church was an important factor for Hannah and Ed as this is the church Hannah has been going to since she was little and her mum plays a very important role in this church still. It was a beautiful building, with lots of lovely light streaming in through all the many windows. Traditional churches can sometimes lack in light however Methodist churches are usually really bright, which is perfect from a photography perspective!

Couple Portraits at Floral Hall

After the vows were said, Hannah and Ed were greeted outside church with lots of confetti as they made their way into the car. When we got to Floral Hall we decided to do their couple portraits straight away as it was very windy and was threatening to rain! We were spoilt for choice with location around Victoria Park, we used a few different areas, in particular I wanted to use lots of flowers in the foreground and background of their photographs so Floral Hall could really live up to it’s name!

They had lots of music throughout the day, both Hannah and Ed are very musical, with Ed coming from a musical family. I loved that they reflected this by making music such an important part of their wedding. For their evening reception they had a brilliant band and their first dance was something really special!

Thank you so much Hannah and Ed for choosing me to photograph your wedding! If you’re planning a wedding at Floral Hall then get in touch, I’d love to hear from you!

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Suppliers:

Venue: Floral Hall
Dress: Anna Sorrano from Wed2B
Hair: Phoebe Hair
Make Up: Meraki Beauty

feminist weddingI’m all about feminism and I’m all about feminist weddings. If you’re in the process of planning your wedding and you’re getting really wound up about all the out-dated patriarchal norms, then fear not, I’ve put together a few tip to help you plan a feminist wedding. TL;DR, basically, just do whatever YOU and your partner want. Everyone will have an opinion on what you should do for your wedding, that is totally cool, it’s usually just because they care about you and want you to have the best day ever. If a wedding tradition sounds totally weird to you and really doesn’t sound like something you want to do then simply don’t do it. My favourite thing about weddings is how unique they are, everything is such an individual choice. You should never feel pressured into doing something when you’re getting married because it’s tradition, forget tradition, you do you.

Women can propose too, even if it’s not a leap year

If I hear “this year’s a leap year, this means *insert women’s name here* can propose” again I might explode. Women are always able to propose to their partner if they want to. I think the big thing with proposing is that it should never be a complete surprise, regardless of who’s asking whom. It’s always a grand idea to have discussed marriage and when you’d like to get married before anyone pops the question. If you’ve been looking forward to your partner proposing to you and you know it’s on the cards soon, then that’s totally cool. There’s nothing wrong with women wanting to be proposed to, but equally women don’t have to wait for their partner to ask them either. To make things super equal you could even propose to each other or, just have a conversation that you’d like to get married and BAM, you’re engaged, congratulations!

Plan the wedding together

This might seem obvious but unfortunately this task is often seen as the “bride’s job” or, the groom may not feel that he has much input. In the same way that you would run a household, the wedding is for BOTH of you, so you should definitely both sit down and work out what kind of day you want and work out what is important to both of you. This way no one person has to take on all the stress of organising the entire wedding and you both get the day that you want.

Screw weight loss

Far too many times I’ve seen weight loss adverts in wedding magazines. Your partner is intending to marry you, for exactly who you are right now. You do not need to lose weight, you’re fabulous the way you are.

Have a Sten do

I find gendered parties a bit confusing, I have friends of both genders that I’d want with me at a “hen” do. I also think I’d want my partner there too, it would feel a bit weird to me to celebrate my impending marriage without the person I was marrying. A Sten party is a great alternative to separate stag and hen dos, you can gather up all your mates and have an awesome pre-wedding bash. This way your favourite human gets to be there with you too!

Wear whatever you want

A wedding dress does not have to be white, it does not have to be a dress. You don’t have to wear a suit. You can wear whatever you want to your wedding, if that is a white dress or a suit then that is totally cool. But if you’d rather wear matching rainbow jumpsuits then DO THAT. (Also please get in touch because that sounds incredible).

Get ready together

I know a lot of couples feel really anxious about walking up the aisle and seeing each other for the first time. To alleviate this stress you can simply get ready together, this makes the morning so much more chilled, there’s no “big reveal” to get stressed about. Alternatively you could have a first look with each other away from all your guests.

Nobody has to give you away

You do not have be walked down the aisle by your dad. You can be walked down by your mum, both your parents, your siblings, your mate or by yourself. The legend that is Chloe, walked halfway down the aisle by herself and the rest of the way with her husband to be, I thought this was lovely because it really signified their new life together.

Having feminist speeches

Traditionally, women generally don’t do speeches at their weddings. The normal format is, father of the bride, the groom and then the best man. In the last few years I’ve noticed a wonderful growing trend of speeches from the ladies. These can be from any women that are involved in the wedding who would like to say something, this can be the bride, the maid of honour, the couples mum’s. Don’t rule out doing a speech because it’s not “the done thing”, if you want to stand up and thank all your guests for coming, you can totally do that.

Deciding on a surname

Traditionally the women has always taken the groom’s name. I’m starting to see a big trend of couples double barrelling their surnames, I think it’s really important to have a good think about this, your names don’t have to be the same but if you’d like them to be then you both need to be understanding that each of your names is equally as important. You can double barrel your surnames, the groom can take the bride’s name, you can make up a whole new name, you can each keep your original surnames. There are no rules here, do whatever feels right!

I hope this guide to planning a feminist wedding was helpful! If you’re looking for a creative and relaxed photographer for your wedding, then get in touch, I’d love to hear from you!

 

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spring blossoms

February 2020 HAS to be the wettest February on record, right?! Despite the awful weather this month I still had a wonderful month. This time of year is always a bit slower so it gives me lots of time to be working away behind the scenes. I’ve been busy blogging, shooting book covers, editing, booking weddings in, planning book cover shoots and launching my family photography side of the business. One of my goals for 2020 was to do more family photography, so I’ve spent a lot of time this month working on my website and family photography brochure. If you’d like to book in with me for some relaxed family photography then please get in touch, I’m only taking on a maximum of 15 family shoots this year so when those slots are booked up I won’t be accepting any more!

I photographed Nacia and Jamie’s beautiful Iscoyd Park wedding at the start of February. It was a lovely start to the month and they definitely chose the right day in February to get married on. Not only did we not have any rain, but we also had the most gorgeous golden hour that we made the most of during their couple portraits. This was my first wedding of the year and it was a lot of fun. I’m so excited to be getting back into shooting weddings after the winter break! I also shot a lovely wedding at Pendrell Hall with Emma Graystone Photography. The weather wasn’t quite as nice for this one but we didn’t let that get in the way of us having a great time!

February was also a really busy month for bookings. I booked in 7 weddings in total, 3 for 2020 and 4 for 2021. I’m now only accepting THREE more bookings for 2020, I’m absolutely over the moon to say I’m almost fully booked. I’d love to book in a few more Autumnal or Winter weddings for 2020, if you’re thinking about booking me for this then please get in touch soon! 2021 is filling up nicely now too!

I’ve been shooting a lot of book cover photography this month. I set myself a goal to do 1 book cover shoot every week day. Although I didn’t quite manage that many, I still got a really good amount of shoots done and lots of new photographs accepted to Arc Angel. I’m planning lots more of these shoots for March, I can’t wait to share some of these with you! I also made time this month to create some personal work, make bread and do our usual Sunday Breakfasts.

Keep scrolling to see some of the photographs I’ve taken this month!

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Whitewell Church Wedding

“Thank you for creating the most beautiful photographs of the most important day of our lives. The way you documented the emotions and moments of us and our family and friends throughout the day has given us photos to cherish for life. Thank you for always being there over Instagram whilst I was anxiously planning the big day but also now even after the wedding. Make sure you join us for a drink if you are ever in London.”
Summer Ceremony at Whitewell Church

Laura and Jaime tied the knot at the gorgeous St Mary’s Whitewell Church on the Wrexham and Whitchurch border in Shropshire. St Mary’s Church is really one of a kind, it has a white exterior and is lovely and light inside. It is surrounded by gorgeous fields and countryside, even if Laura and Jaime hadn’t been heading to Iscoyd Park for their wedding reception, we could have used so much of the gorgeous space outside Whitewell church for their couple portraits. The ceremony itself was absolutely beautiful, Laura and Jaime have been together for a very long time, so it was lovely to watch hem finally say their “I do’s”. The lovely vicar at St Mary’s Whitewell Church, Veronica was leading their ceremony. She is definitely the best vicar I’ve ever worked with, she’s always really laid back, happy, lovely to talk to and is very accommodating for photography and video. Laura and Jaime had Big Bear wedding films filming their wedding as well as me shooting it. I love getting to work with videographers, it’s an extra creative outlook on the day. Veronica was really happy for all us to be where we wanted to get the footage we needed to capture Laura and Jaime’s wedding. I love getting to shoot at St Mary’s Whitewell church!

Summer Wedding at Iscoyd Park

We did Laura and Jaime’s engagement shoot at Iscoyd Park a few months before their wedding day. I knew as soon as I started photographing them on their engagement shoot that their wedding was going to be an absolute breeze. They were so easy to photograph and were even up for going for a little trek into a field when it was raining! During their wedding we also had a bit of a downpour just as Laura went to get into the car to go to church, thankfully this stopped just as she got out of the car and made her way into church. The rain started again during their ceremony but everyone was dry and warm inside the church so no one minded the rain. Laura and Jaime’s luck was really on their side for the rest of their wedding day as just as they came out of church it dried up and the sun came out and the rest of their wedding was full of glorious sunshine.

I adored how Laura and Jaime had styled their wedding. All the little details in their reception room at Iscoyd Park were gorgeous, it was obvious how much time had gone into planning everything and it had come together beautifully. My favourite part of the day has to be the dancing, Jaime and Laura have got some serious moves! I always love a full dancefloor, there’s nothing better than snapping away at people while they’re living their best life, a little bit drunk, dancing to their favourite songs. I wish I could photograph Laura and Jaime’s wedding all over again! I love getting to know these two and getting them to photograph them at my favourite venue is an absolute dream. Thank you so much Laura and Jaime!

If you’re getting married at St Mary’s Whitewell Church then please get in touch, I would love to hear from you!

 

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Hair: Charlotte Medford Bridal
Make up: Make up by Lucinka
Bridesmaids Dresses: Ghost London
Suits: Hawes & Curtis
Videographer: Big Bear Wedding Films
Florist: White Wysteria
Car: Fab Wedding Cars
DJ: Jonny Ross Music