I’ve photographed some pretty small weddings before. I did one for a friend where I was one of only ten guests and another last year with only 8 people, including the happy couple. Personally I actually find it more challenging to photograph a very small wedding than I do a larger one. My typical wedding will have, on average, 70 – 100 guests giving me plenty of photographic opportunities and also the ability to zip around taking pictures of people all day without having to worry that I might be bothering them because I have already taken their picture 8 times already. When Sue and David contacted me for their wedding at Ardanaiseig Hotel there was just going to be the two of them. The absolute minimum requirement for a wedding. I was pretty daunted but it was mid-week and they seemed like very nice people, and I knew the venue was superb, so I decided to go for it!
At the very last minute, however, there was then a change of plan. The two-person wedding was to have it’s guest list more than doubled to a whopping 5 people as Sue’s daughter, her new husband of 2 weeks and her mother decided to come along for the day.
I have been to Ardanaiseig several times in the past, but not recently, and I had forgotten quite how beautiful it was (and how many midges there can be on a damp day such as this one). It is in such a lovely setting, right on the banks of Loch Awe, and provides a wealth of opportunities for pictures. For Sue and David, who live in England, it gave them a lovely piece of Scotland to visit for their wedding and they had the place more or less to themselves.
The whole day was wonderfully low-key and, to me at least, it was just a nice simple wedding. The type of wedding I would like to go to more often. There were the usual flowers and lovely dress but there weren’t 100 guests all vying for attention and there was no standing on ceremony the whole day with rigid time deadlines and formalities. It was probably the most relaxed wedding I have ever been to and all the better for it.
After the civil ceremony, during which one of the multi-purpose hotel staff participated as a witness, there was a bit of chatting with champagne, some family pictures on the front step, some dispensing of Smidge anti-midge cream (my own personal favourite – works well on wedding midges) and then a quick jaunt down to the lochside for a few more pictures accompanied by the hotel Jack Russell. After that they sat around until dinner and I made my way home after a thoroughly enjoyable day!