Daisy and Charlie’s wedding took me to North Devon for the first time, an area which, in spite of living in Plymouth for 6 years, I hadn’t ever explored! What a pleasant surprise it was - all winding lanes and high hedgerows, and all this on what must have been the hottest weekend of the year.Read More
Ali and Joey had booked me to be their wedding photographer from Melbourne, Australia where they live, and as they were only arriving shortly before the wedding we didn’t get a chance to do an engagement shoot. Luckily I had shot Ali’s sister’s wedding at Walcot Hall last year, so we weren’t total strangers!Read More
Sometimes you just get a feeling about a couple - you click instantly, and they feel like old friends rather than wedding photography clients. Kayleigh and James are one of these couples - from the moment we first spoke over Skype about photography for their upcoming wedding at Walcot Hall, I knew they were going to be F.U.N.Read More
This wedding really marked the beginning of the hot, hazy summer of 2018 - looking back on it to write this blog post feels like I’m looking through a golden lens. It was in the magical moment while everything was still green, before the fields all turned brown with the heat, and the atmosphere was so light and fun - all of which were perfect ingredients for a beautiful boho wedding.Read More
Shropshire is a hidden gem. At a wedding I was photographing recently the father of the bride welcomed guests to the county by saying that he knew most of them “didn’t know where on earth Shropshire was before they came, and half of them still didn’t have a clue where they were.” He was only half joking; when I tell people I’m from Shropshire, I’m usually met with a blank stare. Either that or an exaggerated “Oh, THROPTHIRE” if I’m in Australia (a strange relic from a 1990’s coffee advert, apparently).
So why on earth did Shropshire pull me back to the UK after four years living and loving the long hot Australian summers? Sydney has an incredibly reputation as a hotbed of wedding photography, with some of the worlds best coming from her fair shores, but here I was packing up my life and heading back to 5 weeks of summer a year, unpredictable wedding weather conditions and living with a hot water bottle stuffed down my pants for six months of the year.
Well, here goes:
1. Unknown equals unspoilt, dontcha know? I’m no city girl. Tried it, got the t-shirt, got fed up of the t-shirt and the city. Shropshire is a remote wilderness by comparison. Sharing a border with Wales, my home county is a dreamscape of rolling green hills, winding country lanes and cosy pubs. This equals plenty of beautiful rural weddings to shoot, which means mandatory welly wearing, wildflower bouquets and frolicking/trespassing in the open countryside.
2. Family. They’re pretty important, I’m sure you’ll agree, and I was missing out on my family, albeit a tiny one. My gran is an incredible 96 years old, my dad is getting on a bit, and my family of friends has started expanding through the birth of some new small people. Now I get to see my gran three times a week, hang out with my dad on the farm, and be a physical presence in my friends kids lives.
3. Old things. Australia is a pretty new country compared to England, and as much as I love art deco architecture, I was really missing higgledy piggledy buildings. This feeds into my wedding photography too – Shropshire offers a huge list of stately home wedding venues, and two of them are just down the road from me (Walcot Hall and Garthmy Hall).
4. Proximity to…well, anywhere. England may be small in comparison to Australia, but she’s well connected! It takes five hours to fly across the breadth Australia, but now I can be in Greece, Turkey or Morocco in that time or less. Tack on two hours and I can be in the USA. A huge part of the reason I became a wedding photographer in the first place was the idea of being able to travel and work – it’s proving much easier to realise my dream of being a destination wedding photographer with the UK as my base, with weddings in Ireland, France and the USA already in the pipeline for next year.
It's no secret that a big part of the reason I became a wedding photographer in the first place was to allow myself the flexibility and autonomy over my working life required to travel. Being a wedding photographer is kind of a double whammy - not only does it mean I can work when I want to work (two weeks holiday in July, don't mind if I do), but it also means I can combine work and pleasure by travelling and shooting weddings at the same time.
A month in Ireland earlier this year was bookended by two beautiful weddings, one near Cork and the other in The Connemara, giving me three weeks of pure unadulterated travelling. I could edit the wedding photographs on rainy days or quiet moments, fitting it around a busy schedule of hiking, stout drinking and traditional music. It felt to me how life is supposed to feel!
Destination weddings are ever increasing - from small, intimate weddings with a select few family and friends, to luxurious no-expense-spared celebrations. Having already photographed weddings in Ireland and Sydney, Australia, and with a booking in Spain next year my sights are set on ticking off some more of my bucket list destinations and venues. If you're getting married at any of the below, or even if your destination wedding is somewhere not listed, get in touch with me for a special rate!
Kangaroo Valley wedding, New South Wales, Australia.
With its natural rock cathedral and stunning bush setting, Kangaroo Valley has been on my destination wedding photography wish list ever since I attended a beautiful festival wedding there in 2015. As a bonus my Australian visa gives me full rights to work there, so no red tape to contend with!
Marlborough wedding, New Zealand.
We travelled through Marlborough in 2012 but just didn't get enough time there. With its stunning scenery and my favourite wines in the world I'd fall over myself to shoot a wedding there!
Iceland destination wedding.
I've never been to Iceland, but it's been firmly on my travel bucket list for years, and I'd love nothing more than to photograph a wedding against its bleak, atmospheric landscape.
Tropical jungle wedding, worldwide.
Doesn't matter where this one is - it could be Paronella Park in Australia, a rainforest wedding in Sri Lanka or a wedding deep in the Jungle in Bali. As a wedding photographer, the idea of shooting a wedding amidst all that lush green vegetation fills me with joy!
Urban Paris wedding, France.
As a photography student, many moons ago, I took my trusty old 35mm Spotmatic camera to Paris and snuck around the city of love, pretending I was Henri Cartier-Bresson or Robert Doisneu, shooting reel after reel of black and white film of street photography. I would love to come full circle and have the opportunity to shoot a city wedding in Paris.
Creative Georgetown wedding, Penang, Malaysia.
Penang has to be one of my favourite places to visit - the food is incredible (especially for veggies like me), the colonial architecture and bright colours mean that I constantly have my camera to my face, and the creativity that oozes out of the place inspires me no end. A wedding amidst Penang's fading colonial facades and world class street art would be to die for!
So there is it, my destination wedding photography wish list - now I've put it out there let's see if the universe delivers me some lovely couples! If you think your wedding fits the bill, or even if you're getting married somewhere unusual or quirky that I haven't thought of then I'd love to hear from you.
Olivia Moon Photography is a destination wedding photographer and documentary wedding photographer shooting Shropshire weddings, Irish weddings, European weddings, Australian weddings and New Zealand weddings.
Anna and Mark's wedding came at the end of a three week adventure up the west coast of Ireland in my campervan (more on that shortly). By the time I reached the tiny village of Cashel in the Connemara, Co. Galway, I had fallen well and truly head-over-heels in love with Ireland, and have to admit I shed a little happy tear when I first set eyes on Anna and Mark's venue, the beautiful Cashel House Hotel.
The hotel was set in abundant gardens, with a plethora of flower-filled nooks and crannies to escape to for our couples portraits, not to mention an atmospheric windswept waterfront across the road. The wedding came at the end of what I believe could be termed as something of a heatwave by Irish standards, and Anna and Mark were blessed with a mostly dry day.
Every part of the wedding was painstakingly considered to make sure it all had a personal feel, from their close friend leading the ceremony, to the hand gathered petal confetti which the couple had been collecting everywhere they went (including their Greek holiday). Guests enjoyed traditional Irish music in the evening, followed by a playlist put together by Anna and Mark - it must have hit the spot because the party was in full swing as I ducked out!
Ireland wedding photography by Olivia Moon Photography. Olivia Moon is a UK wedding photographer, Irish wedding photographer, destination wedding photographer specialising in creative storytelling documentary wedding photography in England, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.