Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Wedding - Nicole and Paul [Wye River, VIC]

Driving the Great Ocean Road on my way to Nicole and Paul's wedding, I recounted a conversation we'd had earlier in the week. They were both, as so many couples are just days out before their wedding, kinda stressed. But I could here than talking to each other in the background. One was assuring the other, and vice versa, that it was all going to be a.o.k. In that one conversation which was full of boring nitty gritty wedding day details, I could hear the essence of their relationship. The way they each was able to effortlessly placate the other, bring a smile, conjure a laugh. They had each other's backs. As simple and as beautiful as that.


The ceremony location, an inlet at Wye river, was especially meaningful to Nicole and Paul. Nicole's family has holidayed here since she was just a tiny dot. And as Paul was introduced into the family, he too joined them for their holidays here. Just around the bend is the spot Paul proposed to Nicole. So yeah, special.


I feel blessed to now call Nicole and Paul my friends, which made taking these photographs of them very special for me. I poured my heart into them, just as they poured their hearts into each other. I got goose bumps, and it wasn't from the biting tasman wind that whipped up over the ocean.



Nic and Paul, no greater gift could you give the world than to stay exactly as you are.

* Meaghan

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Giving my gift to my children

Sitting at the computer, cup of tea to my left and a jam jar of flowers from my garden to my right. Ryan crawled onto my lap, fresh from the bath with damp hair smelling of strawberries.

"Where's me?" he said, looking up at me with those blue eyes they all say he got from me.

"Can I see pictures of me?"

I flicked through my files, scanning the faces of smiling brides, for a photograph of Ryan. And I kept looking, and looking. Eventually I came across one. From Christmas. Four months ago! While Ryan was happy to see photographs of himself testing out his new scooter, I was aghast. I'd not taken the time to photograph him in like, ages. Shame on me, a photographer after all, who hadn't taken the time to properly photograph her children. Shame Meaghan, shame.

So as I tucked Ryan into bed, kissed him gently on the head and breathed in more of the strawberry goodness, the idea for this shoot was formed. To photograph my children with full intent and purpose. To focus my camera on these little beans, capturing this moment in time. To do what I do for my couples everyday. To give my children the gift of beautiful photos.


I love these photographs of Miles and Ryan. They might just be my most favourite of them ever. They've already chosen their favourites ones and I'm printing them for our walls. I'm looking forward to walking past them everyday.

Happy Easter chickens.

* Meaghan

Monday, April 18, 2011

Wedding - Skye and Blake [Geelong, VIC]

Wow, weddings take a lot of planning. Searching for ideas, setting a vision, going about making that vision happen. Essentially, creating a dream.

So what happens when just hours before your dream unfolds are you standing at your open front door watching the rain crash down?

This was exactly the scenario I found Skye in when I arrived to photograph her getting ready for her wedding to Blake. They had planned a glorious outdoor wedding on the banks of the Barwon River. But the banks were awash with mud, it was a no go. She spoke to Blake on the phone, numerous times. They talked about their options, watched the rain, talked some more. They eventually decided to play it safe, to bypass the mud, and hold their wedding indoors at Truffleduck. Once the decision was made Skye could breathe again, and more forward with her preparations.

A photographers note: when you in a situation such as this, where there are tense moments and big decisions to be made, I have one peice of advice: get the hell out of the way. The last thing a bride needs as she's trying to decide whether to move her wedding location is a snap happy photographer getting up in her face. Exercise restraint, and remember, it's not always about the photography.


And onto their relocated ceremony. The setting, with the gorgeous tree lined backdrop, still felt like it was outside. It was kinda the best of both worlds - inside and dry but with the outside creeping in.


Blake and Skye showed me what it is to stay strong in the face of adversity. They worked together to formulate a new plan, and to make the absolute best of what the day was bringing them. They laughed, so much, and remembered that it was about getting married. Everything else just melted away.


* Meaghan

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Sunday, April 17, 2011

ET phones home

Ring, ring.

At least once during every wedding I get on my phone and dial Amba.

"Hello. Everything alright?" he answers.

What comes out of my mouth in answer to that question varies from wedding to wedding. Sometimes it's a simple 'all good, how are you and the boys?". But other times it's more like "I'm stuck on Kings Way, there's a truck on my arse, I'm lost, and I have to be at the hotel in 3 [expletive] minutes!"

Amba cops it all - I dropped my camera bag in a puddle and put it on without realising and now my back is all wet and I smell funny. I'm starving and I forgot to pack any food and it's another 3 hours until the canapes are served. My 80-200 stopped focussing right in the middle of the ceremony and I freaked out! What does [expletive] EE mean and why is it flashing at me on my screen?

He knows not to be more than two steps away from his phone while I'm shooting a wedding, and an unspoken rule that he needs to pick up within the first 3 rings or there is the potential for my head exploding on the other end. Any myriad of things have gone wrong for me on wedding shoots, and Amba has helped me solve every one. Just last week he was checking rain patterns, the week before that my shoe had broken and he reminded me I had a spare pair in the back of my car.

Working on my own 95% of the time means that I don't have anyone to help me when things go wrong, so I need Amba's help. Usually the phone calls take place when I get in the car going between locations, and most them involve a fair amount of cussing at one thing or another that's frustrated me (bad light, traffic, bad choice of uncomfortable underwear).

Amba also knows me well, so knows how to respond to me when I call. "Just take your next left off Kings way, pull over and breathe" "Have the kids left any food in the car that you can eat that isn't too stale or covered in sand?" "EE means you've bumped your focusing ring on your lens you idiot." Amba can talk me through anything, talk me down from anywhere, talk me up off the floor.

So while you guys don't see him much, and he's not officially part of my business, I couldn't run it without him. More importantly, I couldn't get through a wedding day without him.


This shot was taken at Nicole and Paul's recent Wye river wedding which I'll blog more of soon. The phone call to Amba that day was just as I was coming back into phone reception range, to check to see how he went with a visit with the children to my mother (sometimes, it's not just me that needs to debrief!)

* Meaghan

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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Wedding - Ashley and Anthony [Mt Eliza, VIC]

Like all great romances, it began in a pub. Anthony wondered who was that girl? That girl with the milky skin and astonishing blue eyes? Shy and a little unsure, Anthony sent his friend over to talk to her. It was the best move he ever made, because a few years later here they were getting married.

I've come to know Ashley over the past few years through her love of photography. She's proven to be a gifted photographer herself, but what's really stood out to me is her warmth. She will wrap you up and fill you up with warmth.


Ashley and Anthony were married amoungst the cloisters at Toorak College in Mt Eliza, complete with sincere and loving words, a few tears in the eye, and completely cute bunting.


We changed things up a little bit, doing things a little out of order. After some photos with the bridal party, it was on with the reception - complete with handmade Twister and the best meringues I've ever tasted.


Due to Ashley being a photographer herself, she understand the importance that light plays in a photograph. Knowing this, she also knew the best light for dreamy photographs is just before the sun goes down. So we held our little session with just the two of them after the reception, as the sun went down over Toorak college, and as Ashley and Anthony settled into being married.


All my love to you both. An amazing, amazing day to be a part of. You guys, well, you're just beautiful.

* Meaghan

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Friday, April 8, 2011

Wedding - Courtney and Jason [Lorne, VIC]

There's a little chapel, nestled in the deep green hilside. It has a pointy roof and warm wooden floors. You know the one. You drive past them on your way to somewhere else. A chapel such as this, in the little part of the Victorian world called Pirron Yallock, is where Courtney and Jason were married.

Why Pirron Yallock? Because it means something to Courtney and Jason. it means family. And to Courtney and Jason, family means the world.

I loved being welcomed into their family, even just for a day. Courtney and Jason are magnetic. They are so drawn to each other, and people are drawn to them. I drew my breathe in as Courtney stepped out in her wedding dress, just as her mother did. I laughed as they laughed during their ceremony, just Jason's father did. My heart was warmed as they made heartfelt and humourous speeches to each other before they cut the cake, just as all their guests hearts were warmed.

Courtney and Jason are dynamite, and the world is a better one with them in it together.


Onwards and upwards! You guys light up the world.

* Meaghan

Wedding dress: Carla Zampatti (origianally in a different colour and Court had it made in white)
Bride's shoes: Zomp
Hairsylist: Sonia (Maddog) Harris
Make-up: Trish Hay
Bride'smaides dresses: Carla Zampatti
Groom's suit: Eddy Elias
Groomsman's suits: Eddy Elias
Florist: Lyn Armistead
Reception: Lorne Beach Pavillion

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Monday, April 4, 2011

Wedding - Anna and Jon [Woodend, VIC]

Anna was travelling overseas. England. Land of crumpets, the Gallagher brothers, royal weddings and in Anna's case, the land of three-letter Jon. Anna and Jon were guests at a wedding, caught each other's eye during proceedings, shared a boozey pash at the end of the night, and fell in love.

Anna is a friend of mine, so to be there to capture her getting married to Jon was very special. Jon and Anna are the reason they came up with the saying two peas in a pod: they both share a razor sharp wit, beaming intellect, big hearts and penchants for dressing up. They love life, they love each other, and really it is as simple and as wonderful as that.





Anna and Jon's wedding suited them down to the ground. They didn't stick to tradition for tradition's sake. Anna had a bridesmaid and a brides-man. Jon was flanked by a groomsman and a groomsmaid. Everyone wore outfits that suit them and their individual personalities and flair. They sung Roy Orbison and Crowded House during the ceremony. The cake was made by a dear friend. Anna sang to her new husband. They danced to Gloria Estefan. 'Unique' is not the right way to put it because Jon and Anna did not set out with the aim of their wedding being to make it different. Uniquely them' sums it up better.






Hello Lara and Paul! Lara is one of my best friends in the world. She's one of the few that knows me implicitly (and still loves me!). I know Anna because of Lara, she was our link. Lara and Paul are getting married too. Congratulations honeypots!




Lara and I and our best cheesy grins.


Anna and Jon's wedding wasn't just about them. Everyone there was wholeheartedly part of the celebration. And celebrate they did! (Note the smiley smiley faces. Seriously, these guests smiled a lot.)


Hugs all round! Anna, my heart is full knowing that you've found your 'one'. And knowing that he's Jon, amazingly awesome (and just a touch wonderfully silly) Jon makes me even happier. To you both, stay golden.


* Meaghan

Location: Campaspe House, Woodend
Dress: Mathieu Salem
Shoes: Mallouk
Hair: Switch
Make-up - Jess from the Spa
Bride'smaides dresses: Review and Vivien of Holloway
Groomsmen suits: DKNY and Ben Sherman
Groom's suit: Arthur Galan
Groom's FABULOUS shoes: a little ol' shoe maker near where Jon lives.
Flowers: Jon's wonderful mother
Cakemaker: Dean Myers

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