The Wedding Planner Role

Posted on the December 16th, 2014 under Uncategorized by

Hi Guys, Naomi here,

I hope you’re well and looking forward to the festive season that is so rapidly approaching.

tania_nursiahI’m going to divert off at a bit of a tangent today and talk about wedding planners. A “tradition” very much from our friends across the Atlantic, it’s something that is catching on fast here in the U.K. So, I decided to catch up with Tania Nursiah of Orange Blossom Wedding Planners to talk about what she does and how the role has developed.

So, first up, how did Orange Blossom come to be?

“A bit of a convoluted story as it happens”, she laughs. “I used to work in the City as one of those much maligned bankers, but it was something that I came to dislike. So, when my husband and I decided we wanted to start a family, I looked for other avenues”.

Banking to wedding planning, does it follow?

“Well, in many respects no, but in some it does”, she smiles over her coffee. “One thing I just had to be in the banking world was organised. Some of the things I had to organise were very complex with huge cause and effects in play. It was something that I got extremely good at – organising”!

So, how did you get a start in wedding planning then?

“We had a planner for our wedding, and whilst it was very much needed as I was at full tilt at work at the time, I watched and thought “I can do that”, although it was no more than a passing thought at that time. However, when I got to the stage I mentioned above, those thoughts came flooding back to me, and it just felt so right”!

So, did you start up – just like that?

“No, I didn’t, I knew I had to gain some sort of experience. So, I put some feelers out amongst my firends and it was Michelle Wiggett (who I think you’ve showcased here) who put me in touch with one of her wedding planner friends. I offered my services free to learn the ropes. Yes, I was fortunate to be in a position where I could do that, but I assisted on a summer of weddings. That gave me the grounding I needed to start Orange Blossom”.

So, I know all of my photographer readers will want to know exactly what you do!

“Ha ha, yes”, she really does laugh out loud. “I’m really there to just make sure everything goes according to plan come the big day. To make sure the experience is completely stress free for the most important people and that they can relax and enjoy their day. In the run up I can be involved as much or as little as the bride and groom want to be honest”.

So,the service is flexible in terms of what you actually plan?

orange-blossom-logo“Absolutely, I do offer a full wedding planning service where I organise every fine detail. Obviously that’s where I will co-ordinate with the photographer. I have even been involved in putting a photographer short list together for some clients. But essentially, I take a full brief from the bride and groom, then get examples and quotes in from all the service providers and on agreement order those services in. Then I manage the organisation process leading up to the wedding day itself when I will be with the bride for the preparation and then at the venue to make sure everything is absolutely perfect”.

I can see there’s a lot to organise.

“Indeed, and that’s where my in-depth organisation skills come to the fore. Making sure everything works like clockwork on the day is an art form”. She raises a cheeky smile. “But it also needs good people skills as well. You are constantly juggling people, times and events, so you have to get the providers to “buy in” to the bride’s vision and make sure you deliver. The real trick though is to appear invisible to the bride and groom and to make sure everyone is briefed on their role”.

What’s you favourite part of wedding planning?

“Without doubt just seeing the joy on the bride and groom’s faces. The happiness at the ceremony and the party afterwards. Weddings are joyous ocassions and I just love being involved. I think the acid test is would you do this even if you didn’t get paid. And, I can honestly say, that whilst I like getting paid, I just love being a wedding planner, it is the most rewarding thing you can do. It’s not even a job is it”?

Final question, where do you work?

“I’m based in Hertfordshire so I tend to work around Herts and London mostly. I can do other locations, but there are so many great venues close to home, I don’t eally need to go too far afield”.

So, if you’re looking for a wedding planner in Hertfordshire or London, give Tania a call.

You can also find Tania on Facebook

You can also enjoy this video about how to become a wedding planner!

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What Makes A Great Photographer

Posted on the March 6th, 2014 under Uncategorized by

This week PhotosByTags puts Michelle Wiggett a photographer from St Albans in Hertfordshire…in the spotlight! As always we asked the searching questions and it was a superb interview.  Here we go!

Michelle Wiggett is a family photographer in St Albans

family photographer

What’s Your Goal With Clients?

Once a client has booked their photography session my key priority is to ensure they are comfortable and fully prepared well ahead of our time together. I like to get to know and understand exactly what they want to ensure I capture their family as truthfully as possible. I put a big emphasis on listening, prompting and asking the right set of
questions.

Ideally I’d kick start this process with a face to face meeting in their home to find out what their ideal image looks like. This provides a fabulous opportunity to talk about styling and choice of colours and what clothes they should consider wearing.

It’s imperative that the clothing and style compliments the family as a unit so that final presentation will not date and is true to them.

By the end of our get together I take away a concise brief about the portraits I need to create and ideas start to materialise in my head. The initial actual consultation can take around 45 minutes and by the end of this the client is confident that they will have an amazing experience, and that I am the right photographer to fulfil the need they have expressed.

What makes a portrait classic?

My goal is to create portraits that cannot date, that you look at and could not pinpoint to a specific date and time, only to a memory of a particular stage. It’s a combination of knowing the family, getting the children to engage with you, using the light available to you and how you finish the images. It should distinctively show your style as a photographer that captivates your viewer. And most importantly, it is the way it is treasured and displayed.

Here is Michelle’s children’s photographer St Albans page

How do you select your locations?

I’m always on the look-out for new locations which I know will produce complimentary backgrounds for my subjects and where I’m able to maximise the light given to me on the day.   I love to get outdoors, whether this is the countryside or urban scenery, provided the backdrops I work with suit the syle we’re going for.

The time of year and seasonal colours available will influence my decision but  I work throughout St Albans and Hertfordshire, some of my favourite spots being Verulamium Park, Heartwood Forest, Ashridge Forest, St Albans bridle paths, The Alban Way and Whipsnade Zoo.

What is essential when creating a professional shoot for a family?

It is key to be consistent and professional – my clients have booked me based on what they have seen on my website and the experience they have had before the shoot. What your client sees when they land on your website, to meeting you, experiencing the shoot and selecting their wall art they need to have a consistent, highly professional and fulfilling experience.

My brand is about nostalgia, capturing moments in time and treasuring beautiful keepsakes and that’s what I strive to deliver at every customer touch point.

How did you start as a photographer?

I began my career as a professional photographer in 2013, but have been taking images and working within the industry for over 10 years. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have worked for two of the biggest and most successful  commercial photography brands who have pioneered the stock photography industry into what it is today.

If there was one thing in the whole wide world you’d like to photograph what would it be?

My grandparents… the way I remember them when I was little. I wish I had more photographs of them. They’ve all played a massive part in influencing my photography brand values and style.

You can find Michelle’s main site at http://MichelleWiggettPhotography.Co.Uk

What’s Special About Wedding Photography?