I spend most of my professional working life in Leicestershire and Derbyshire, but every now and again I get asked to travel to other counties in order to cover weddings there. The photo above is one such example, where I was asked to travel to Worcestershire to photograph at the amazing Stanbrook Abbey. The Abbey, as the name suggests, was home to a convent of nuns up until very recently in fact, when the nuns left and the abbey was purchased by a single private owner. Over the years that followed the abbey was slowly turned into a wedding venue and then into a fully functioning hotel, one bedroom at a time. Stanbrook Abbey is a stunning place to get married, and I was overjoyed to have an opportunity to work there (and the many times since then!)
Much to my bemusement, there is a large pond at the back of the venue that isn't shown to potential brides and grooms when they visit Stanbrook to have a look around, but it's one of my favourite places to take photos at the venue, and stuns every couple that I show it to!
There's a small metal bridge over a tributary that feeds the pond which itself makes for lovely photos. There's a small rowing boat if you're feeling particularly brave, but for me, the biggest draw if the rope swing that's hanging from a willow that's right next to the pond. The willow again is a lovely addition to the venue and is so large and dense you can actually take some really cool photos from underneath the canopy.
The rope swing is positioned in such a way that you can shoot through a bit of the canopy and easily see the swing from the water's edge.
The swing is only really big enough for one person at a time, so I asked the bride to take a seat whilst her new husband stood by her side. I shot from a fair distance away with my Nikon 200mm f/2 lens. This beast of a lens makes the subject stand out from the background like nothing else available today, and as you can see here the effect is sublime. The separation between the subject and background is so great and pronounced that it appears the bride and groom have been cut out of another image and inserted into this one.