Wedding Photographer London LoveStruckPhoto shoots a wedding at Cripps Barn, Gloucestershire , United Kingdom

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Wedding Photographer : LoveStruckPhoto  
Couple : Hannah & James
Wedding Photographer London
Ceremony Location : Oxfordshire
Reception : Cripps Barn, Gloucestershire
Wedding Date : 31st May 2013

Tell us a little about yourself??

We are a couple of just over 4 years, in our 20’s. We’re rather quirky and nerdy. We spend most of our time together and wouldn’t have it any other way.

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How do you think or would like people to describe you?

We’re down to earth and love having fun. We love to laugh and hope that people think that we are friendly and easy to get along with.

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Tell us a little bit about the wedding day?

We took a lovely drive through the countryside in the summer to photograph Hannah in her childhood family home in Oxfordshire. A really relaxed vibe from the beginning, the day just got better and better. Cripps Barn is a stylish little gem hidden amid acres of beautiful land. We had blue skies, green grass and bright yellow rape fields. The couple and their friends made us laugh so much, they were a young bunch of lovely people who were so easy to photograph. I think this was the wedding where we laughed the most. Between all the giggles, we captured the couple’s lovely and unique style of wedding. The rustic converted barn with a contemporary twist made for the perfect setting for this delicately designed wedding. What stood out was the Japanese ceremony of Kagami Biraki, (Hannah was dressed in a Kimono for this) which is the drinking of Sake, whereby the couple smash the wooden lid of a barrel filled with Sake and serve it to all their guests in wooden cups. Photo-booth followed this event, and our most memorable photo-booth yet.

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How did you get into wedding photography?

We both studied photography in university; all the while Laimonas was shooting weddings from a very young age to make some pocket money during studies. We didn’t know each other back then and only got together during our final year in Uni. Weddings were not something we aspired to but over a cuppa one evening in our first year living in London it just happened, we decided to team up and use his technical talents and my creative edge to make a wedding business that stood out from the rest.

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How long have you been a wedding photographer?

Laimonas has been a wedding photographer for roughly 7 years, but Lovestruck has been going strong since December 2011.

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Can you share how you've made your wedding photography business a success? Any mistakes you made along the way?

We haven’t made this business purely a business; we have brought in character and individuality. We are a couple and we relate to the couples we deal with. We make our work very personal and informal. When we meet up with our lovely clients, it tends to feel like we’re meeting with old friends. Although we are professionals at what we do, we drop that formality of things and try to make our couple feel relaxed. Weddings are stressful and the brides usually wear themselves out with ‘to do’ lists. We hope that when they meet us, a weight can be lifted and they can sit back, cross photography off that list and know that we will take care of at least 1 part of that special day.

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What do you think a bride or groom should be looking for and not looking for in terms of wedding photography packages?

When we deal with our clients, we imagine what we expect from our photographer when it’s our turn to exchange vows. So we give to them what we expect in the future. Every client is different; they all expect different things from a photographer. We try to fit into the day unnoticed if possible. We don’t want to make this couples wedding day all about photos by ordering guests around, being rude and controlling, nobody wants that. So a meeting with your photographer is crucial I would say. Getting to know the person who is going to be a part of your wedding is so important. A decent, honest and friendly person should be what you look for first in your photographer. As beautiful as the work might be, what’s the point if no one is smiling because the photographer was just a nightmare? In terms of the work itself, we try to make stories from bridal and groom preps to first dance. This is just a nice way to portray your day. It should be clearly set out by your photographer what you are going to get for example: How many hours of coverage, High-resolution images on Disc or USB if preferred plus a license to print. Payment should be thoroughly discussed and agreed upon prior to the wedding day. Over time should also always be discussed with the bride and groom to avoid unexpected additional costs. There has to be a trust between photographer and client.

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How do you advertise yourself and what for you has really worked?

Last year we spent £0 on advertising and 2013 was our most successful year. Word of mouth through our weddings worked a treat. Social networking also played a huge part in getting lovestruck out there. We have been featured on many wedding blogs also and oddly enough in a magazine in Australia.

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Why do you think people hire you?

Hopefully our work impresses potential clients, which then lead to enquiries and meetings. We love to meet the clients because that is where we can really show lovestruck’s true colours. Also, I think people like the idea that we’re a couple. They can relate to that and we have a good laugh exchanging ‘where did you meet?’ stories. We’re patient, understanding, and open-minded and always love a challenge. There’s nowhere we won’t travel to, no wedding is too big or too small.

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How many weddings do you average per year?

We try not to do more than 30 weddings a year, to keep creative, as doing something far too often makes it more of a job rather than something you truly enjoy.

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Whose wedding would you love to shoot?

Ooooooh!!! We both just said Joseph Gordon-Levitt at the same time! I would like to go back in time and shoot my parents wedding personally also Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. Oddly, Bill Bailey. Also Jemima Kirk, but I’m going to stop now.

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If you were asked to shoot a destination wedding, where would you hope it would be?

I’m not sure if Ireland counts, but that was our first over seas wedding last year, followed by Lithuania and we are traveling to Italy to shoot a Tuscan wedding coming up this year in July. However, we’d love a Greek wedding! Different cultures really intrigue us. We love to see something completely different in wedding ceremonies. Jewish wedding might be fun to experience also.

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What equipment do you have for a typical wedding day?

We shoot with Canon equipment – Laimonas with a Canon 1D X, 85mm F1.2L and 35mm 1.4 primes, and Juliet with Canon 5D MK II and 24-70mm 2.8 and 70-200mm. 99% of our work is with ambient light as we prefer a natural feel, but in extreme darkness we pop a bit of flash with a 580 EX MK II.

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What is the most challenging thing about a wedding.

I suppose it all depends on the clients and how they feel on their wedding day. Things could go super smoothly, but if something is delayed chaos can kick in for the bride or groom or whoever is holding everything together. Nothing can be done about lost time, but we never reflect the chaos at a wedding, we always try to remain completely at ease and work through whatever problem presents itself. Time is the biggest challenge. For us, we make sure that we give ourselves enough time to get to the bride even if that means staying the night before in their town. But we have no control over the wedding schedule, however, so far, so good.

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Do you have an approach to a wedding?

We approach it from a documentary style. We try not to be a part of the day but to capture it going by. We only start directing people when we’re doing couple or group shots and even that is fun. We always tell groups to do whatever they want to do and try and steer clear from formal group shots unless it’s necessary. With couple shots, it’s all about them enjoying the moment, not being posed or looking uncomfortable but to just be with each other. If they are nervous, we tend to stay further back and let them control the vibe.

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Who or what inspires you?

We inspire each other, as sad as that sounds, it’s utterly true. We are a couple in love and I suppose it helps a lot when we you have to photograph other couples in love. I always imagine the wedding as my own, this way I capture everything that I feel is important. The time and effort that goes into weddings can go unappreciated, so we make sure we photograph all that has gone into making that day what it is. The people make the party, and the same applies to photos. They have to put in what they want to get out. If couple and guests are at ease and play along, the outcome will be at it’s best.

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Best & Worst marketing idea so far?

Our website has been the best and advertising on Facebook was a waste of money and more of an experiment and definitely the worst idea.

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If you weren't a photographer, what would you be?

Laimonas isn’t just a wedding photographer, he’s also in the advertising, fashion and men’s fashion industry, where he gets to meet a lot of celebrities and work on huge campaign shoots including traveling abroad. I would be in interiors. I have often assisted interior stylists. My absolute passion is home design, interior design and innovative spaces. My favorite thing is probably moving house and designing my new spaces. But if he wasn’t a photographer, I guess he’d be unemployed.

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Share your favourite image of the day and why?

Our favourite photo from their wedding has to be James and his groomsmen holding hands in the field. They were trying to portray a masculine, war heroes type feeling, but somehow all ended up hand in hand and even plucking petals from flowers. It was a really funny moment that made a fantastic picture.

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Do you have any goals for the future photography related or otherwise?

Laimonas is working hard on his career in Men’s fashion photography. As for myself, I want to push LoveStruck as far as it will go. I love weddings and I have plans to start a wedding blog of my own soon as I love the styling of weddings. But we will always have LoveStruck.

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What do you think is key to being a successful wedding photographer?

A good attitude, in our experience, is key. You have to be amicable in these events. It’s a day where everyone wants to be happy and celebrate, so you need to leave all your problems and stress at home before setting off to a wedding, because it is all about the couple and their guests.

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Are there any other wedding photographers whose work inspires you, can be a well know photographer or somebody you've stumbled across?

Laimonas has made friends with Adam Alex who often photographs celebrity weddings. We learn a lot from him and his works and hope to be as successful as him one day.

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Proudest moment so far. Photography related or otherwise?

Racking our brains, we can’t think of one, so we thought of this instead… We shot a wedding in Cornwall last year for a wonderful couple. It was a beach wedding held in a fort. We stayed in Cornwall for a whole week quite literally on the beach. We sailed in yachts and shot a fabulous wedding outdoors with the sound of waves beneath us. I think at this point we just felt so lucky that this is what we do for a living. We kind of reflected on all the great places we’ve visited including Lithuania and just took a moment to realize how lucky we really are and fortunately we love what we do. We will definitely revisit these thoughts when we are shooting our wedding in Italy this year.

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