This week we chat to Joanne Collins, who with husband Kieran make up Mylo Photography, who are Sheffield based Wedding Photographers.
Hi Joanne, so first off how long have you been photographing weddings for and how did you get into it?
Kieran told me that he had just shot his first wedding during one of our very first conversations about 3 years ago (I was impressed by this ha ha). He had been asked by the couple (Vanessa and Sam) as they’d seen some of his other photography and wanted something a little bit different for their wedding day. After a day of tiny country churches, vintage buses, shooting in cornfields with fake moustaches, an amazing “cheese” cake, bunting ahoy and lots of real ale and local ice cream I think it’s fair to say he was hooked. He also works as a freelance cameraman and videographer so wedding photography just became addition to his company Northshot. He went on to shoot another 5 or 6 weddings over the next year or so but it was after he’d taught me some skills and following our own wedding in October 2013 that we decided to rebrand ourselves as Mylo Photography, treat ourselves to a fancy new website and make a go of wedding photography as a husband and wife venture. We launched in May 2014 and have been overwhelmed since then by bookings, kind words and encouragement.
What do you particularly like about photographing weddings?
Every wedding is different. Before planning our own, I don’t think we had fully appreciated the time, love, care and attention to detail that goes into planning a wedding. Regardless of budget, venue, religion or tradition, every couple plans a day that they full intend to be not only one of the best of their life, but also a day to begin a lifelong union of love and companionship. To be asked to photograph a wedding is a real privilege for us and a task we undertake with a spirit of fun and romance but also a seriousness – we want to provide our couples with a collection of images that really tell the story of their day. You also get to see people at their very best – dressed up and oozing happiness – what else could be better to photograph than that?
How would you describe your style and approach?
Our approach changes throughout the day. We mostly slink into the background, taking pictures without people really realising it. It’s great to catch guests unawares, having fun and appreciating the effort put into the day. It’s also really great to catch the couple unawares too – little glances, secret kisses, first looks, we try to capture all of these feelings unseen and unposed. Saying that, most couples do want some formal (ish!) group shots so we do handle this part of the day with some authority to capture these shots with ease so the couple can get on with mingling and celebration. When we whisk our couples away for a while we like to keep it simple and informal. Nice walk, bit of a cuddle, a little light direction and the result is beautiful, relaxed and natural portraits.
What advice would you give to couples looking for a wedding photographer?
I would suggest doing your research and know the kind of photographer that you want. We all have so many different styles and ways of working. If you come across a photographer with a portfolio of photographs you could imaging being your own then meet with them, chat with them, read their testimonials and take it from there. Hire the photographer whose work you love and that you could imagine being a guest at your wedding, you will spend more time with them than most of your guests so it’s important that you “click” (groan).
What tips would you share with couples to help their day go more smoothly?
Plan, plan, plan. Planning our wedding was one of the most rewarding things I have ever done. Sure, it didn’t feel fun when our invites had a spelling mistake, or when I was still finding purple tissue paper confetti hearts 6 months after our wedding because of a mishap trying to separate them with a hairdryer but every niggle, every worry all of the research and budgeting was worth it on the day. Seeing your friends and family enjoy the results of your planning is actually really heartwarming. However, my other big bit of advice is don’t worry too much. Had someone have told me prior to our wedding day that it would rain torrentially in the morning, that I’d be 20 minutes late to my ceremony because of traffic, that 7 people would just not turn up, that I would wear my £275 veil for 20 minutes before ripping it, that the table holding our vegetarian chilli would collapse and spill everywhere, that I would spill hog roast, ice cream AND cherry beer down my dress and then to top it off loose my shoes? Well! I would have been mortified. But it was the very best day of my life so far and the photographs prove it…relax and enjoy it.
Finally… Whats the best moment you’ve had as a wedding photographer?
I always cry at the “I do’s” – it doesn’t matter if we’ve only met the couple once or twice before their wedding or even that morning but I always feel emotionally involved at this point. Kieran loves the getting ready shots – he says it’s all do do with the nerves and the light. He loves golden hour too (just as the sun is beginning to set every couple should make the time to go for a 10 minute walk – they won’t regret it!) I think among our best moments are catching the moments that the bride and groom might miss (usually teary parents) because we know how happy they will to be able to see these feelings captured in their photographs. Sometimes we look back at a picture and the sense of excitement that we have knowing how much the couple will love the finished article is the best feeling in the world.
A big thank you for Joanne for talking with us, and if you would like to get in touch and find out more then you can do so via the Mylo Photography profile page here.