Thornton Manor Wedding Photographer
Thornton Manor wedding photography of Marissa and Daniel.
Congratulations to Marissa and Daniel, who were married at a venue I’ve had the pleasure of photographing many times over the years. A historic country estate located in the village of Thornton Hough, Cheshire, read on to learn about one of my favourite venues and the tricks and techniques behind my Thornton Manor wedding photography…
Though couples almost always cross their fingers for sunshine on their special day, as a photographer, I welcome cloudy skies because they add plenty of interest to images. For example, notice how my establishing shot of Thornton Manor reflects the complex mood of the morning – excitement, yes, but also nerves and everything in between!
Marissa and her bridal party would be making their preparations at the bridal suite of the manor itself. Marissa had opted for a fishtail gown from Puure Bride, an excellent choice as it would create a striking and über-feminine silhouette for photos later. Finishing off the look was a headpiece from Rocks for Frocks.
Married at Thornton Manor.
While all this was going on the groomsmen were making their way to the Thornton Manor House. As a documentary wedding photographer, I believe natural, unposed photos which capture real moments convey more of a story than my camera pointed in everyone’s faces ever could, and so my aim is to be as unobtrusive wedding photography as possible. Note how much more energy and movement is conveyed simply by allowing the day to unfold naturally.
Another shot I like—a twist on the classic bride-to-be being walked down the aisle—is that of Marissa and her father making their way down the aisle of lime trees on the venue grounds. Notice our perspective here, how my positioning creates depth to reflect the life journey of father and daughter. I took two very similar shots: one in black and white to reflect the timelessness of the relationship between father and daughter, followed by one in colour to reflect the excitement of the day. Which do you prefer?
The wedding ceremony itself was to take place in the Georgian-inspired dining room, and one of my favourite images is that of Daniel anxiously awaiting his bride with his best man at his side. Notice again how I play around with colour—and lack of it—in my work. While black and white photography is ideal for reflecting timeless moments like the wedding vows, I decided that vivid colour would better reflect the intensity of Daniel’s emotions here. Although the walnut panelling makes this rather a dark room, luckily the light from the large windows fell perfectly onto the pair, ensuring I captured every bit of emotion on their faces.
The wedding of Marissa and Daniel at Thornton Manor.
Cocktail and Canapes at Cheshire wedding.
Once the register was signed there was time for guests to mingle outside over wedding cocktail and ice cream, in a twist on the postnuptial canapés. Although I avoid posed photos at all costs, you do occasionally get some gems, and I love this sweet, lighthearted shot of the bride and her bridesmaids letting loose in the sunshine.
Weddings are such hectic occasions, a time to catch up with family and friends we may not have seen in years, and so appreciating a new husband or wife tends to take a backseat. At this point, then, I encouraged Marissa and Daniel to enjoy 10-15 minutes alone while capturing natural wedding photographs and unobtrusive wedding shots from a distance. One of the first things I do when arriving at a venue is trying to pinpoint the most interesting backdrops for use throughout the day, and this foresight paid off in a particularly well-framed shot of the couple surrounded by greenery among the venue gardens. Definitely, a highlight of my Thornton Manor wedding photography, don’t you think?
Thornton Manor wedding breakfast - speeches
By this time we were all ravenous and ready for the wedding breakfast, which was to take place in the Music Room. Thornton Manor wedding event has many gorgeous spaces and this one is no exception with its oak panelling, intricate plasterwork and marble pillars.
In keeping with tradition, the first speech was made by the father of the bride, before moving on to the father of the groom, groom, and finally the best man. I love this shot of Daniel looking positively euphoric following that morning’s nerves!
Another great image is that of the groomsmen enjoying post-meal cigars, Peaky Blinders-style. Although I don’t encourage smoking I must admit the smoke created some pretty cool shots, thanks in part to the natural backlight which allowed me to capture the smoke in rich detail.
Evening wedding reception - entertainment
By this point, guests were very much ready to stretch their legs, and saxist May was on hand to get everybody on their feet. Meanwhile, myself and the newlyweds stepped outside to capture some final one-on-one shots. There’s a reason sunset is referred to as the golden hour by photographers, the light lending images a magical and optimistic quality that simply cannot be replicated.
As well as a photographer, it’s common for couples to opt for wedding video documentation of their special day, with both teams working side by side to ensure no moment is missed while bringing the day alive for those watching many years from now. This shot of the couple surrounded by their video team proved a quirky addition to the wedding album.
As with any dance floor where the drinks are flowing freely, there’s always the chance that memories will become fuzzy as the night wears on, so at this point, I began using a flash to capture the details which might ordinarily be lost. Judging by these pictures, a brilliant night was had by all.
Award-winning documentary wedding photographer.
Thank you again to Marissa and Daniel for trusting me to photograph the festivities; I hope you had a fantastic honeymoon in the Maldives, and that married life is everything you expected.
If you enjoyed my Thornton Manor wedding photography and would like me to document your own special day, please don’t hesitate please do get in touch. My 2022 calendar is filling up fast. Look forward to hearing from you!