Q – Tell us about your background – how did you become a photographer?
After doing my work experience at a local paper, I was determined to become a journalist until I took media studies at college and picked up an old 35mm film camera. Photography was a hobby for a long time; I was the annoying kid who would rope their mates into posing for photoshoots and would take my camera everywhere. In and around a multitude of day jobs, I studied photography at college before dropping out, then at night school and then later enrolling for a degree as a mature student, I dropped out in year two, but I got asked to shoot my first wedding the same year and whilst it was a slow burn to build up the business, I love it, and I can't believe how lucky I am to do this job.
Q – What packages do you offer couples?
These days it's an hourly rate. It's simple and makes things very easy. It's totally flexible, so clients only pay for what they need, whether that's 10 hours of coverage or just a few hours. The more time booked, the more I throw it. E.g. book six hours and receive a pre-wedding photoshoot, book eight hours and receive the pre-wedding shoot plus an album, and if a couple books 10 hours or more they'll receive the shoot, the album and a second shooter for added coverage of their wedding day.
Q – What should couples expect when booking your services?
They can expect someone who's friendly and approachable, with a relaxed style of shooting. When they will see me at their wedding; I won't be lurking in the bushes like a sniper! They can expect me to chat to their guests like they are my own friends and family and I'll gladly hold your dress if you need to step over a puddle. I also carry snacks on me so if you get hangry, I can help you out.
Q – What's your favourite wedding that you've worked on and why?
Oh, that's not fair, you can't ask that! After almost 11 years of weddings, there are too many to choose from!
Q – How long before the wedding should a couple book?
Most of my clients book me six to 12 months in advance, unless they're planning a wedding around a Bank Holiday weekend like Easter or August, then it's more like two years in advance as those dates don't stick around for long.
Q – What's your favourite part of the job?
The people. I can't believe that I get to spend my day with so many lovely people and get let into their lives for this one lovely day. It's pretty incredible. I love being in the room when a dad sees his daughter for the first time as a bride, or when a nan goes rogue with the confetti, and that first look when the love of your life is waiting at the end of the aisle for you.
Q – Do you have any top tips for couples looking for a photographer?
Book someone who makes you feel comfortable and puts you at ease. Someone who shares your sense of humour and can make you laugh. Your photographer is a supplier who you'll spend the most time with so you've got to like each other.
To find out more about Nicola, visit www.weddingphotographyinshropshire.co.uk