Wedding photography at Platrand Lodge with Charl + Maryke

Doing the wedding photography for Charl and Maryke’s big day was a bit more challenging than the engagement session (you can check out the pics from the engagement session here). The late summer afternoon we had to shoot their engagement was just perfect, with light you could cut like butter.

Their wedding day was a totally different story. Windy, getting colder as the day progressed, and just a bit grey. None the less, with a bride willing to brave the icy wind and a groom that is phased by almost nothing, we set out and got some great images. It just reminded me once again about the job and responsibility that wedding photography is. You have to make the best of what you’ve got. You only have one chance at it, so you’d better know how to use the environment, the available light and your gear.

Massive thanks to Maryke for braving the cold. Without her steely determination and Charl’s calm demeanour, I would have had my work cut out for me. And then of course my assistant and lovely wife. She just doesn’t stop talking, and that almost certainly helps keep people’s minds occupied.

And then, lastly, I have to commend the folks at Platrand Lodge once again for putting up a quality event. They really know how to make it unforgettable. I really hope it isn’t the last time I shoot a wedding at Platrand Lodge.

The Grobler Gang: Family Photography

As much as I loooove wedding photography, I have to say that family photography is so much less stressful. If the weather doesn’t want to play along, you just reschedule. If the kids are sick, or you are, or the parents are, you just reschedule. The parents are usually the most stressed, because they are terrified the sprogs aren’t going to behave. The kids act up to the camera, and it makes doing family photography so much fun, and so easy. When the parents realise they can’t control the kids, they start chilling out. Oh, and of course I encourage the kids.

Snapping the Groblers wasn’t any different. Emma was on the verge of her first birthday, and you could see she had some attitude. Seth was just out of his skin. Totally. I started thinking he must’ve sneaked a Red Bull earlier. This just played right into my hands. Everything was just kicking off, the light was flowing like butter, and I was filling up cards. Loving it.

 

Wedding Photography at Naunton’s with Nondumiso and Andile

Meeting Nondumiso and Andile for the first time was a real treat. They are a young, successful and driven couple, that know exactly what they want. Doing the wedding photography for them on their special day was not at all any different, as the wedding venue they chose have been in the business for some time, and have raked in awards for the events they organise. Especially weddings. The people from Naunton’s Guest House near Ladysmith in Kwazulu-Natal really know their stuff, and made my job shooting the wedding so much easier by creating the perfect venue to photograph the event.

Nondumiso and Andile certainly looked the part, and their guests were no less glamorous. The whole day was just perfect, and apart from a threatening thunderstorm late in the afternoon, the occasion was joyous as only Zulus can have it. Singing and dancing aplenty.

 

Drakensville Wedding Photography with Paula + Donovan

Paula and Donovan are Ladysmith locals in the true sense of the word. Referred to me by another local, when they decided to sign me up to do their wedding photography I was well excited. The venue of their wedding, the ATKV Drakensville resort in the Drakensberg is one of my favourites, and just perfect for wedding photography. The wind was howling on the day, and without my trusty assistant there on the day it was going to be a bit of a challenge. Never the less, I roped in some guests to help with the lighting, and we all came out smiling in the end. Not only did the mountains provide some really great photo opportunities, the festivities after the formalities was exactly that, festive. Trust a bunch of Ladysmith locals to throw one hell of a party.

Engagement session with Charl and Maryke

I met Charl and Maryke for the first time about 2 weeks ago for a little engagement session before the big day. We hopped around town a bit to do some location shots before heading out to the veld at Platrand Lodge to make full use of the setting sun and the soft, buttery light that comes with sunsets in this part of the world.

We started of in an old abandoned train yard in town, and got some great shots there with the fading light. Maryke’s stunning blonde hair really brought out the best in the sunset, with golden coloured highlights making some of the images really dramatic and adding great texture.

With him being an engineer and her an actuary, it is a match made in heaven. The fact that they are just sooooo in love made my job a lot easier, and all I have to do was set the stage to capture the moments as they happened. If this is what their engagement session was like, I can’t wait for the wedding. It is going to be a fairy tale in the Northern Natal Bush veld.

Gauteng Wedding Photography with Grant & Nicolette

Doing wedding photography for family or friends is usually something I try and avoid at all cost, but after doing a wedding for a friend not too long ago, I was less reluctant to shoot for Grant and Nicolette at The Farm Inn in Gauteng. It is a great venue. The grounds is a great setting for some stunning photographs.

Getting the best shots was going to be a bit tricky, seeing it was a morning/early afternoon wedding. Thankfully they were very flexible, and we waited till latish in the afternoon before we did the couple shots, making it much easier and getting much better light. Once these two got into their stride, all I had to do was get the shutter to do its work.

Here are some shots from the day, on a cold, wintery Highveld  afternoon. Gauteng wedding photography at its best!

Venue: The Farm Inn, Cecilia Michaletos, Banqueting Co-ordinator, Tel: 012 809 0266, Fax: 012 809 0146, e-mail: functions@farminn.co.zawww.farminn.co.za

Stationary: Adri, Bathusi Promotions & Suppliers, Tel: 012 567 3968, Fax2Mail: 086 505 4756, Fax: 012 567 0726, www.corporate-branding.com

Décor & Flowers: DERICK lavendulla@mweb.co.zawww.lavendulle.co.za, Tel: 012 347 4880

Music: Albert: 082 928 0886, Angie: 079 695 2209, email: starlightsounds62@yahoo.comwww.infostarlightsounds.co.za

Cake: Lorraine Van der Merwe, email: lscreations2008@gmail.com, Facebook: www.facebook.com/pages/Ls-Creations/125417917482981

Minister: Carlos Coveiro, Charmaine Rorke, email: charmainer@doxadeo.co.za, Tel:012 333 5426, www.doxadeo.co.za/MootCampus.aspx

Dresses, Makeup, Nails, Hair: Melinda – 084 585 9798, Lucinda – 079 895 4543, Lizelle – 079 987 3633

Videography: Liezel Genis, 083 452 6575, info@liezelgenis.co.za

Isla’s Christening

Shooting a Christening was definitely a first for me. Michelle and Anthony contacted me a while back to photograph the christening of their first bundle of joy, Isla. After spending several years in the Middle East, they were in South Africa for some time off before jetting off to the UK again for work and their next big adventure. Between the two of them they have as many degrees as I have digits, so I think it is pretty safe to say that Isla will be nothing short of genius. She is already the sweetest little thing, and being able to do the photography for her christening was an absolute honour.

After doing some research to get a couple of perspectives on how to approach shooting a christening, I felt much more confident. I did some location scouting, checked out the lighting in the church and made sure I knew what the settings on my trusty old Canon 5D  with the 24 – 70mm f2.8 should be to get the best images possible. I was lucky to have a little word with the priest before hand to just make sure there aren’t any parts of the service/ceremony I was not welcome to shoot. Needless to say he was very helpful, and urged me to cover as much of it all as possible, insisting that it is a celebration, and nothing was off limits.

The day itself went off without a hitch, and I would just like to say a special thanks to Anthony, Michelle and Isla for bearing with me to get some shots of them after the service in the church. Little Isla was getting hungry, and I suspect tired too, but she was great and I did manage to get some great shots of Mum, Dad and their little bundle of joy. Here are some selected images from the christening.

Not wedding Photography, but still loads of fun!

Like the title says, it isn’t what I usually do, but just as much fun as wedding photography. I had a little stall at the Ladysmith Show this year from the 16th – 18th of May, and shared some floor space with other local wedding service providers like Nauntons Guest House, and Cherry on Top Bridal Boutique. Woz’Bona Photography being the photography part of it all.

As part of my exhibition I had a photo booth where people could come and have their photo taken with friends and family. To make it a bit more fun, there was a little basket full of goodies like wigs, sunglasses, scarves, funny teeth and all sorts of other bits and bobs. I wish I could post all of the images, but that would mean uploading for the next couple of days. Here are some of my favourites…

Wedding Photography at Cathedral Peak

When Thea approached me to do the wedding photography for her and Wayne at Cathedral Peak in the Drakensberg, I was a bit skeptical. How can I work and be a guest at the wedding? The fact that Thea is one of my oldest friends, and Wayne a friend from school convinced me, and I took the job.

Needless to say the setting was stunning. The Drakensberg in autumn is the best place is our beautiful country that time of year, and to be able to shoot a wedding there, at Cathedral Peak Hotel is any photographer’s dream.

The wedding was everything it promised to be, and being able to do the photography for two old friends on their wedding day, share it with them, their friends and family is something I’ll look back on with a warm, fuzzy feeling every time.

Venue (including cutlery etc.) Cathedral Peak Hotel - www.cathedralpeak.co.za, +27 36 488 1888, info@cathedralpeak.co.za

Draping – Dawn Turner, dawnturner@futurenet.co.za, +27 834191439

Blomme – Prairie Roses, +27 364881565 (By Joan Hoffman, Lauretta Maree, Anne-Ghrett Erasmus, Rebecca Steele)

Music – Colin van Wyk, Drak Entertainment, www.drak-entertainment.co.za, colinvw@lantic.net, +27 83 4500373

Koek – Marie Abrahamse, +27 715820987

Suits en Dresses – Bride and Co., www.brideandco.co.za

Printing – MediaFx, mediafx.co.za, +27 21 873 3120, info@mediafx.co.za

Minister – Ds. Smuts, NG Gemeente, Harrismith, +27 586221355

 

Family Photography on the Battlefield

I had the pleasure of doing a family photography session with the Tucker family not too long ago. It took us a while to get to do the shoot, with weather and all sorts of other issues throwing a spanner in the works. I have to say I am glad we put it off until we did. The shoot ended up being on a hill above Platrand Lodge, just outside Ladysmith, where you have a great view of the amazing sunsets we have in this part of the world. Needles to say, we were blessed with the most beautiful sunset, and together with the venue made the perfect setting for some great photography.

I have to mention that the Tucker family love the outdoors, hence the location for the shoot. To add a little intrigue, the location for the shoot happened to be the exact location a fierce battle between the Boers and Poms took place more than a hundred years back. What makes the spot so significant is that wounded soldiers on both sides were treated by one minister, under heavy fire. One of the soldiers was quoted a saying: “You are preaching a fine sermon today…”. As Francis of Assisi said: “Preach the gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words.”

The photography was made so much easier by the great light we had to our disposal, and as the sun set, it just got better and better. Below is a couple of images from the shoot. Click on any one of them to view the gallery.