An epic wedding deserves an epic blog post, so hold tight – there are a lot of images in this post. Jenny and David love Venice so much they decided to tie the knot there. Who could fault their impeccable choice? If you’ve been, you’ll know. Venice is beautiful, romantic, interesting and historic, and it’s warmer than the UK too. If you’ve not been, put it on your bucket list. It’s a magical city and a place like no other. From a wedding photography perspective, it’s like a giant film set, with opportunities for images around every corner.
A romantic Venice wedding
Lois and I arrived a day early so we could explore. Logistically the day was going to be quite complicated and involved boat trips between locations, and a walk for photos in St Mark’s Square. Somewhere along the way we needed to find a place for group photographs. It was also a good excuse to try out the pizza and ice cream and see some of Venice’s many sights.
On the morning of the wedding, an early start for us and we hopped on an early morning water bus to Lido, a separate island 45 minutes from the main part of Venice, and where Jennifer and David had their hotels. We were early enough to get the outside seats at the back of the boat and Venice looked especially beautiful in the early morning sunlight. The tourists were not yet on the streets. Only local people going about their business.
I really like this Gondola shot (above). There are Gondolas carrying tourists up and down the canals in Venice all day for £70 a trip, but in this image one is being used as a ferry to carry locals on their way to work from one side of the canal to the other.
On arriving at Lido, Lois went to find the guys at their hotel and I went to seek out the girls in a different hotel. We started with the usual bridal prep in the hotel room. Jen was getting the full treatment. A buzz of excitement in the room, and before long the girls were ready.
Meanwhile, a few hundred yards down the road, David was making his final preparations with the guys.
David and Jen made their way from Lido back to the main island of Venice separately and in Water Taxis. The main difference between the Taxis and the Buses? – Speed yeah!
It is pretty cool turning up for your wedding ceremony in a water taxi on the Grand Canal in Venice. The wedding was held at the Venice City Hall. George Clooney and Amal Alamuddin were married here a few months earlier. When we arrived, the previous wedding was running late. I noticed an empty room with a pretty staircase and suggested we pass the time by doing a few bridal portraits.
Before long, the guests were ushered in. Time to get the show on the road.
The civil wedding ceremony was in two parts. The bridal party are led into a room for the formal bit and to sign the legal papers. Then they all go back into the main room to rejoin the guests, say their vows and sign their wedding certificates. The whole ceremony was conducted in Italian with one of David and Jen’s friends acting as translator. The whole thing was very laid back and we were able to photograph the it all, even the signing of the documents.
After the ceremony, time for a few relaxed photos on the balcony with the Grand Canal in the background.
This started of as a picture of the bride and groom on the bridge. Then the bridal party wanted in, then friends and before you could say boo, everyone was in the shot. I couldn’t get far enough back to get them all in, so ended up taking two shots and stitching them together in Photoshop. Can you see the join?
Eventually we ended up in St Mark’s square for bride and groom photos. Not an easy job in the mid-day sun in one of the most crowded tourist locations on the planet!
Back to Lido.
Above is a behind the scenes shot of the photographer in action. It’s a tough job . . . Below is the result.
The reception was at the “Refresh” club on Lido. Best of all – cocktails and canapes on the roof in the sun before dinner.
After dinner, time to relax. A change of clothes, a change of pace. Jen and David popped back to their hotel and we grabbed a few photos in the softer evening sunshine.
These images (above) taken on the central reservation of the dual carriageway near the Club!
At the end of the evening Lois and I made our way back to the main part of Venice on the Water Bus, taking in the sunset as we went. The perfect end to the perfect day.
All images by North Wales wedding photographers Golding Photography – Dave and Lois.