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Wedding Photographer Yorkshire Sansom Photography shoots a wedding at Victoria Baths, United Kingdom

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Wedding Photographer : Sansom Photography  
Couple : Caroline & Scott
Wedding Photographer Yorkshire
Ceremony Location : Salford Town Hall
Reception : Victoria Baths
Wedding Date : 20th July 2013

Tell us a little about yourself??

We both love what we do and so photography is a hobby as well as a profession. For me that means landscapes and even macro work whereas Verity loves fine art photography. I love road cycling, at the moment I’ve got a new bike sat upstairs just waiting for the sun (In the meantime I’ll let my old bike get muddy in this weather) and Verity likes to get down to the gym to train for 10k runs!

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

Ah no, that’s a tough one but I’d hope we come across as approachable, definitely talkative and passionate about what we do!

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Tell us a little bit about the wedding day?

We first met Caroline and Scott at their engagement shoot which we did at Salford Lads Club (http://www.sansomphotography.com/caroline-scotts-manchester-wedding-photography/) It turned out to be a fantastic shoot and we loved hearing about their fantastic plans. We knew the spectacular Victoria Baths couldn’t fail to look great especially with the couples love of the 60’s mod theme the wedding was following. We were looking forward to the wedding all year, knowing what a great opportunity it would be. Unfortunately for us when the day finally came we were right in the middle of one of the worst bouts of sickness either of us can remember. With weddings though unless you’re dying or dead there are not really any excuses so it’s a case of drink lots of water and get to work! We’re pretty careful about every aspect of a wedding day but illness is the one thing you can never really help. After just under 4 years this remains one of our toughest challenges to date but we came away with one of our favorite collection of images ever. It makes cold winter mornings seem like a breeze in comparison and definitely helped us become better photographers!

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How did you get into wedding photography?

I started in live music photography when I was 16, that love of a camera landed me in Leeds Met’s Northern Film School. During my time there I spent more time taking photos than I did in lectures and although I enjoyed my time and came away with my degree, I left knowing I wanted to be a photographer rather than a film maker. Furthermore I’d realized I wanted to photograph people, and there are a lot of people at weddings! Verity had a bit of a (huge) head start on me in terms of artistic development. Her dad is a full time watercolour artist and ex photographer so she’s pretty much been taking photos since she could walk. Her photographic passion was always fine art photography which took her right through her bachelor’s degree in Fine Art at Leeds Met. By the time we both graduated we spent a lot (most) of our time together and after I’d set up a basic website online charging a barely enough to cover petrol we set out to shoot our first weddings. Within a year we’d shot 60 and were hooked!

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How long have you been a wedding photographer?

A little short of 4 years, during which time we’ve shot over 170 weddings.

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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 put too much faith in SEO ‘experts’ initially which proved a costly mistake. We both really believe that what has made our business a success is believing in what we do. Not trying to imitate others, instead shooting a wedding exactly how we want it to look and not trying to appeal to every single bride getting married.

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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?

The photographer, it’s the only thing that really matters. Although many photographers offer different album and printing options (Not to mention delivery methods and fancy gimmicks) there’s not really much point unless the photos represent you as a couple. The photographer has to fit in with your day and deliver a set of images you will LOVE, not just be happy with. There’s so many vastly different styles I think it’s always a good idea to pick a photographer who is a real master of their trade rather than a jack of all, producing blindingly average shots that range from photojournalist to traditional posing. So much goes into each different style, posing a couple in its-self is an art, as is photojournalism!

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

We’ve tried a bit of everything really, so much so that now it’s quite hard to tell exactly what works best. Suffice to say working hard and pushing yourself to put out the best work you possibly can is always the safest bet!

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Why do you think people hire you?

Because we have our own style, we’re not going for anything too crazy but at the same time all of our weddings have a look that makes it clear it was us that shot it. We don’t spend our time trying to imitate photographers who we look up to!

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How many weddings do you average per year?

We shoot around 40 per year, we try to limit it to 40 but if there’s a great enquiry and we’re free we sometimes go over!

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Whose wedding would you love to shoot?

I’d have loved to have shot Donald Faison’s wedding, but (possibly unsurprisingly given the talent in the USA) we didn’t get the call there. Still, I’ll hold out hope that Chris Froome drops us an email (I’d even take a look at his yellow jersey as payment!)

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

Somewhere with lots of sun!

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What equipment do you have for a typical wedding day?

We both bring two camera’s with us. In the morning I have a wide angle and usually my 50mm and Verity tends to use her wide in conjunction with her 30mm. Once the ceremony is over I ditch the wide and leave that to Verity, mostly sticking to my 85, 50 or 70-200.

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What is the most challenging thing about a wedding.

Not missing anything, as far as we’re concerned there’s nothing at a wedding that you can ask people to do again, doing things over and over again isn’t what you want on your wedding day!

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Do you have an approach to a wedding?

Nope, we know what we like so we just see what happens and go from there!

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Who or what inspires you?

There’s some really fantastic photographers out there but for us Australian photographers seem to be really pushing the industry forward – at least in the style we love!

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Best & Worst marketing idea so far?

Worst – losing control of the look of our website for SEO gains (Which turned out to be non-existent anyway!) Best – Working hard on our website and blog to get a look we’re really happy with.

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

Very possibly unemployed! I really can’t think of anything else I’d want to do (especially things I’d actually be capable of doing!

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Share your favourite image of the day and why?

We feel like this one really sums up their day, we didn’t ask them to stand like that, we just arranged the guests ready to throw the confetti and Caroline and Scott just looked effortlessly cool as usual!

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

Most of our goals relate to our recognition extending beyond the UK and hopefully this year will help us with that!

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

Loving what you do!

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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?

Jonas Peterson’s work is always fantastic, as is Ryan Brenizer. There’s really lots more than just those two though, it’s such a huge industry it’s hard not to be blown away by the talent out there!

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Proudest moment so far. Photography related or otherwise?

Covering as many weddings as we have in the short time we’ve been going has to be the best thing, but having couples change their wedding date so we can cover it is a pretty special feeling!

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