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Originally posted on Polka Dot Bride on January 29, 2009

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Today’s expert is a bright spark in the Western Australia wedding industry. Sue-Lyn Moyle of Margaret River FIne Art Photography. Sue-Lyn has the ability to capture beautiful detail in her surroundings and she’s also committed to being environmentally friendly. Working along side her is Tammie and the two girls can often be found on the grass, with legs in the air capturing the perfect shot!. Sue-Lnn is not only talented at capturing weddings, but she’s also an avid art photographer and has even held exhibitions of her personal work. (Which you can view on her personal site)
Tell me about yourself?

I’m in love with photography for starters! I also love traveling and having a camera with me means I can bring home a lasting reminder of an exciting moment, exotic location or the awesome people I’ve met on the way.

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How did you get into photography?

My earliest memories of taking photos are when I was about eight years old. I would borrow my parents’ old film camera and set up stunts with my younger brother. Once I dragged the trampoline inside and placed it at the bottom of the staircase so I could take photos of him jumping off and bouncing high into the air! I would get a huge buzz out of seeing the results a few days later once the film was developed. Later, I got the same buzz developing film by hand in the university darkrooms where I completed a photomedia and journalism degree.

What is your point of difference from others?

I am a practicing art photographer and photojournalist and I love exploring society through photography and weddings are no exception. Having started out by taking photos on film, I learnt a certain awareness and patience for the right moment before releasing the shutter.

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How do you keep on learning? How do you keep your product fresh and different?

I love that photography for me is a constantly evolving process – every shoot is different as I learn more about the people and places I’m photographing. I also love experimenting and trying out new ideas.

What inspires you in your photography?

I’m inspired by imagery that makes the viewer linger and look again. Photographers whose works inspire me include Annie Leibovitz and wedding photographer Jessica Claire.

Photography is more than the ‘cute’ or ‘beautiful’ shot. What captures you to then say, ‘that would make a great shot’?

The moments where I think ‘that’s a great shot’ are usually the ones that would otherwise go unnoticed and the subjects in the photo are often unaware of their photo being taken. It can be a slice of a moment of flurry where everyone in the scene is concentrating individually on what they are doing or simply the moment of a quick, but knowing glance between two people.

What are you passionate about in your profession?

The Margaret River region of Western Australia is a place I find so immensely beautiful and inspiring with it’s landscape of lush fields, rolling vineyards and pristine coastline. It’s a place made for romance. Everyday here is so visually rewarding and I love to share and show off this region to those who visit and choose to host their special day here.

What is your number one tip for brides?

Don’t forget to wear sunscreen! And the same goes for the groom and bridal party.

Tell me about your wedding or your dream wedding?

My dream wedding would probably take place on a secluded, pristine, white sandy beach with closest friends and family; and a big bonfire party afterwards!

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What are your favourite wedding photograph ideas?

I love it when the bride and groom get involved in ideas for their wedding photography, such as bringing in hay bales to an empty field or showing off their personality through decorations, far out locations (Germany!) and even hire cars – like Samba the bright red VW Combi van.

What do you love about Australian brides?

Their great use of colour and sense of adventure.

How do you plan your shots so that each bride has a unique ‘story’ of her wedding?

I’m always thinking ahead and preempting what will be happening next as well as concentrating on the smaller details that make up a wedding day.

What was your most memorable wedding moment?

I was so pleased to see a bride spend her whole wedding day smiling and without a care in the world even after an accident a few days before had left her with a small fracture in her skull, meaning she couldn’t fly to their Mauritius honeymoon!

What are the biggest mistakes you see brides making?

Holding back on the photography – the images you have from your wedding day are what you’ll look back at time and time again in years to come, which makes it so important to commission the right photographer for you and not base your decision purely on cost.

Cleverest ideas you’ve seen?

Using wine barrels for wishing wells, wine corks for placeholders, printing favourite images onto canvas and having a mini wedding album to keep in your purse.


5 things a bride and groom must get right?

Their photographer!, being able to relax on their wedding day, having a backup indoor venue for winter weddings, putting enough time aside for photographs and to just have fun and be yourself in front of the camera.

Thank you for sharing the thoughts behind your work Sue-Lyn! You can find out more about Sue-Lyn and see more of the work of her business Margaret River Fine Art Photography at her website!

Originally posted on Polka Dot Bride on January 24, 2009

  

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Cathrin D’Entremont is a Perth based wedding planner who owns CD Weddings and wedding blog The Wedding Nut. With a wicked sense of humour, Cathrin also runs workshops “The Wedding Workshop” for Western Australian brides packed full of tips and hints from vendors and suppliers to help couples plan their wedding day.

Tell me about yourself?

I was born and raised in Berlin, Germany. One day, I was bored, I packed my suitcase and arrived in Sydney. I just fell in love with Australia and decided to stay. I got bored a few more times and moved to Malaysia and Canada, but always returned to Australia and have now settled in Perth.

I created CD Weddings four years ago with one year of intensive research. It was the right time in my life to create a business in doing what I have done for most of my life throughout the world – creating events.

I also created The Wedding Workshop. Bridal expos are great but often don’t give the bride and groom the information they need to put such a huge event together. The workshops are a step by step seminar guide. 10 of the most important vendors a bride and groom need on their day will talk about the “do’s and don’ts” in their field – what questions to ask and where they can save money.

Working together with talented people, musicians, florists, caterers and many more, keeps my day to day routine interesting and creative.

I love every aspect in my business – well almost, I hate accounting!

What influenced your decision to become a wedding planner?

It was like a chain reaction of events. I wanted to create a business in event management. Organising corporate events was just not me. I thought of doing themed kids birthday parties at first, as I have 3 children of my own and I saw potential in it. Then one close friend said I should do weddings as I would be perfect for that!

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Photo by NK Photography

How has living and traveling in different countries influenced your style?

Every culture has different values and traditions. It helps me to incorporate solutions for a bride and groom even through they are not from that culture. For example: The bride had no family in Australia and did not want to walk down the aisle by herself. I suggested doing it the German way and walk together down the aisle. We ended up that the groom walked half way down to meet her in the middle. So much fun to create unique wedding!

Do you feel this gives you an ‘open-ness’ in interpreting new ideas from overseas, for Australian brides?

Being exposed to so many different cultures one has a far greater horizon.

What inspires you? How do you keep your ideas fresh for each wedding?

Blogs! I am a blog addict. I visit Polka Dot Bride every day! I love looking at wedding photos, interior decorating books, landscaping books and I shop a lot. Window shopping mostly, as I am not a very rich person! When I shop I create for my clients. It works for me!

Do Australian brides and grooms have a distinctive style?

Yes they do. They love their outdoor weddings. Of course we are lucky to have such a great climate. Australians have a very relaxed attitude and do not take things too seriously.

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Photo by NK Photography


What is your number one tip for brides?

Create a budget and stick to it! Don’t do another cookie cutter wedding. Incorporate your personality; do not be afraid to have some great entertainment at your reception.


If money was no object, how would you style your dream wedding?

I know too much! I would not be able to choose! I like everything – garden weddings, lavish ball room weddings, getting married in a beautiful resort! If I had the money I would like to get married to my husband once or twice a year with a different theme. I love my job and I just love creating together with my clients their weddings and I get to spend their money. ?

What are your favourite wedding ideas?

I love monograms designed for the bride and groom and incorporating it throughout the wedding. Later they can use it for their personal stationery.
Candy buffets. Guests absolutely love it. Never any leftovers for me to eat not even one Smartie!

What do you love about Australian Brides?

Australian brides often not so restricted through their culture traditions and have fun in creating the day they love.

What should brides start with when they come to you to start the planning process?

Cutting out from magazines or printing from the computer of all the photos they love and like to see at their wedding, no matter how wild or far fetched they are. I like to get their vision into my head so I can then find everything they need. It starts out as a huge collage which will turn into their perfect wedding.

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Photo by Samm Blake


What was your most memorable wedding moment?

Oh, there are so many, but one still sparks emotions in me. It was a groom’s speech! He started to say:” On behalf of my wife and I”, he stopped and then said with tears in his eyes ” I have waited so long to say that, may I say it again?” And he did with so much power. Everyone felt the love for his wife and started reaching for tissues.

Cleverest ideas you’ve seen?

Every time I see a product that is unique, a new one comes on the market. I love what Pink Frosting has done. They have search the world for unique items and brought them to Australia like the monogrammed parasols and Wedding Graffiti. No excuses not to personalise your day anymore!

Five things a bride must get right?

1. Set a budget and stick to it
2. Balance the budget
Don’t spend most of the money on your dress, leave some for the reception.
3. Get organized and keep a ring binder with tags. Carry it to every vendor meeting.
4. Do not leave things to the last minute and allow more time on the wedding day. Some things will take a little longer. Don’t rush!
5. Simile, breathe, relax on your big day. Enjoy it!

Oh, can I add No.6. Hire a Wedding Planner.

Thank you for sharing your advice on Polka Dot Bride Cathrin! You can find Cathrin at CD Weddings, her blog The Wedding Nut or at her workshop site The Wedding Workshop

Originally posted on Polka Dot Bride on January 16, 2009  

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Today Polka Dot Bride is joined by a dynamic, successful wedding industry pro- Leigh Taylor, who with her husband Bradley Patrick owns Sydney photography studio SugarLove Weddings and Sydney videography studio White Designs.

What was the catalyst for starting SugarLove Weddings and White Designs?

SugarLove Pictures started in early 2000 and was initially just one photographer & one agent/photo producer coming together for their work within the Arts & Entertainment industry. My husband & I worked between the USA & Australia regularly & things grew to incorporate Advertising, Editorial, Fashion and Film clients. Our wedding division started indirectly at the request of some well known celebrity clients to cover their day. The rest they say is history – SugarLove Weddings was officially formed in 2004.

White Designs was started in a similar fashion…. one bride trying to find a videographer that could produce documentary style footage with a high level of elegance & style decided to start her own business. Her desire to cater to the same level of discerning clients who appreciate the differences that professional commercially trained crew can bring to their wedding documentaries was the sole decision behind building White. We purchased White from the original owner in 2007 and merged the business with SugarLove Weddings

What is your business philosophy?

Our philosophy is based on integrity, passionate client management & an appreciation of being invited to share one of the most important days of your life with our clients. An all encompassing love for the art of making beautiful images “both still & moving” drives the SugarLove & White team.

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Anna and Nathan on their wedding day as captured by SugarLove Weddings

How would you describe SugarLove’s photography style?

Timeless, emotional & spontaneous moments captured in a relaxed unobtrusive style is often the way our work is described by SugarLove clients. Our personal business approach combined with a high level of ongoing support and “love” that starts from the very first meeting to the final collection of albums is widely regarded as one of the added joys of working with SugarLove.

What do you love about Australian brides?

Most have a great sense of humour and a fresh & candid approach to their day

What do you look to for inspiration? Do you have a ‘feeling’ about each bride you photograph and then plan the photo shoot accordingly?

No photo shoot at SugarLove is planned in the old fashioned sense. Pre planning meetings take place one month prior to the wedding day to discuss the shot list and desired locations, however if something is working better on the day between the couple & our photographer this spontaneity is paramount. The most memorable shots are those taken when in the “moment”.

Our creative inspiration comes from things outside weddings such as travel, film, food, art and music.

What sets you apart from others?

We don’t feel couples should have to purchase an album to be able to book the very best photographers in the business. For the majority of clients, our packages with albums are fully inclusive so there are no hidden extras after the honeymoon.

We keep the business & creative sides of wedding photography separate for clients at SugarLove. Each couple are working one on one with their own account manager to ensure no detail is missed prior to the day, the photographer can then concentrate on what he does best (capturing the amazing images we are hired for) and clients are overjoyed to receive their images anywhere from 7-30 days after the event instead of 3-6months.

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Lea captured on her wedding day to Matt by Sugarlove Weddings

How do you keep your product fresh and different?

Embracing new technology has always been high on the list of priorities. Listening to what clients feel is missing within their expectations of photography & video services helps open up new ideas for the future. Combining experience from our body of work in other industries ensures our work looks unlike anything else in the wedding industry

What are your number one tips for brides?

Always discuss your expectations of how you dream your wedding day photography & video to be before the big day. Be yourself in front of the camera and your natural beauty will shine through. No posing, no fake smiles, take a deep breath & enjoy every minute of the day, it goes far too quickly. Chose a studio with integrity and ensure you understand fully what is included in your package prior to booking. Read previous clients testimonials & ask to view published work which is the signature of any top studio. Lastly, an experienced photographer or camera operator with well rounded experience in other forms of photography outside of weddings will bring a fresh approach to your images.

What should a bride know about wedding videos?

We have three packages available for clients but designing something custom made for couples is quite common so brides should know this is always an option. When choosing a company to work with always follow your heart. Consider your budget but book with the studio who has the footage & images you love the most. First impressions count. Pay attention to a company who is well organised from your first phone call, first email or first meeting. They will ensure the wedding videography goes smoothly & they will be a delight to deal with long after the last shot is taken.

What are your favourite wedding ideas?

Anything with sentiment and individual style.

You film a lot of celebrity weddings-have you ever been star struck?

It is nice to meet someone you admire creatively – an actor, singer or artist but no I cannot say I have been star struck as yet.

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Most memorable wedding – and for what reason?  

Definitely my own day on November 10th 2001 in the Blue Mountains, NSW.Leigh Taylor Wedding

We chose a weekend getaway, a gorgeous intimate location, a small guest number, and made choices about styling, menu and music all based around our 1920’s theme. Heartfelt vows, vintage prints, a moonlit cake cutting and the crisp scent of spring in the air are just some of the memories that make those moments feel like yesterday.

Leigh Taylor Wedding Photo

What lifestyle habits do you suggest for brides in the run-up to their weddings?

De-stress, De-stress, De-stress… it will pay off in the photos & video, we promise!!

Thank you for joining Polka Dot Bride today Leigh! Check out SugarLove Weddings and White Designs for more delicious work!