Weddings

Wedding: Maite & Aitor, Santo Domingo Cathedral & Hotel Los Agustinos, Haro, La Rioja, Spain

Wednesday December 3rd, 2014 08:00 AM

Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org

Before her wedding in Santo Domingo Cathedral and Hotel Los Agustinos in Haro, La Rioja, Maite had asked me to keep an eye out for her three-year-old niece, Alba.

As a photojournalist, I’m always following the light and the action and there’s a large chunk of spontaneity in the images. But as a professional wedding photographer it’s important to make sure key family members and guests feature in the photos. I always ask couples for a list of key people.

I like it when children are on that list. Alba is only likely to remember the wedding through the photos and hopefully she’ll be able to get the vibe of how fun the day was. I like to take photos for future generations. Maybe Maite and Aitor will have children one day and they too will be able to feel how happy we were on that autumn day in 2014.

Last week I was at a photographic conference in Sevilla and among those talking was the US photojournalist Tyler Wirken. Tyler, widely regarded as among the best wedding photographers in the world, said the following:

“The photos I make on a wedding day are not for the bride and groom. They are for people that don’t yet exist.”

Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.orgWedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.orgWedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.orgWedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.orgWedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.orgWedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding / Boda en Santo Domingo y Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org

Wedding: Charlotte & Greg, Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, Basque Country

Wednesday October 22nd, 2014 04:55 PM

Boda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.org

Wedding photography is all about showing the bride looking fantastic. OK, to some extent the groom too but if you haven’t got photos of the bride at her best, then you know they’ll be problems. But wedding photography is also about showing the people around the bride (and the groom) and the relationships between them.

So I’m always looking for images that incorporate proud parents and supportive friends. Sometimes the family member is the star of the photo. Other times they’re somewhere in the background. But their presence within the composition gives context and narrative and often humour and fun to the photos. And that’s what my photography is all about. There’s a good mix of both here in these photos from Charlotte & Greg’s wedding at Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava in the Basque Country.

Before any wedding I always sit down with the couple and make a list of important family members and friends. Then I memorise their names. It may seem like a small thing but it helps win people over. As with everything in life, the details are important.

Boda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.orgBoda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.orgBoda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.org Boda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.org Boda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.org Boda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.orgBoda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.orgBoda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.orgBoda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.org Boda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.org Boda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.org Boda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.org Boda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.org Boda en Hotel Eguren Ugarte, Laguardia, Alava, País Vasco | www.sturcke.org

Wedding: Black and white photography at La Vieja Bodega restaurant, Casalarreina, La Rioja, Spain

Friday June 13th, 2014 02:26 PM

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org

Many famous photographers shot many or all of their most evocative images in black and white, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Robert Capa being among the first two to spring to mind. And not just because they had no other option. Paolo Pellegrin won Photographer of the Year last year with a largely black and white portfolio.

Black and white photography reduces a colourful world to different tones and, in doing so often simplifies a scene. Simple can be better, resulting in more powerful images. Not every photo works better in black and white, far from it, but some certainly do.

The photo above, taken during a wedding at the excellent La Vieja Bodega restaurant, in Casalarreina, near Haro, La Rioja, is a case in point.

I was reminded of this during a two-hour mentoring session this week with the renown British wedding photographer, Jeff Ascough. When I moved to Spain four years ago I always offered my wedding clients the option of black and white photographs. And the offer is still there! If you’re interested, please don’t hesitate to ask!

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, Haro, La Rioja, Spain. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org

Unlimited coverage: Maria & Santi’s wedding, San Pablo church & Cachirulo restaurante, Zaragoza, Spain

Friday April 4th, 2014 08:00 AM

Wedding / Boda en Restaurante Cachirulo, Zaragoza, Spain

I’ve written before that unlimited coverage is a key part of what I offer my wedding clients. I don’t know why more photographers in Spain don’t do the same. To me it’s a way of getting great shots not only during those tension-ladened pre-ceremony mornings but also, many hours later, the evening festivities.

María & Santi celebrated their wedding in the beautiful San Pablo church in the heart of Zaragoza before decamping to Cachirulo restaurant on the outskirts of the city. Cachirulo not only has lovely gardens but also stunning indoor spaces, particularly the conservatory. The evening dance was to be held there and I, for one, didn’t want to miss it. To me the resulting photos are worth every penny spent on a hotel room even if it means I’ve less take home pay.

It was also a wedding where the guests just wanted to have fun. Me too! We all did and the result… happy clients!

Testimony from María:

“Hi James,

“Many thanks for everything. Your work was fantastic during the wedding. Many guests asked me who the was the photographer; whether you were family or a guest? It shows not only that you can take photos but also win the crowd.

“It was a great decision to go with you and many thanks for making it so easy.”

Wedding / Boda, Iglesia San Pablo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda, Iglesia San Pablo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda, Iglesia San Pablo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda, Iglesia San Pablo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda en Restaurante Cachirulo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda en Restaurante Cachirulo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda en Restaurante Cachirulo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda en Restaurante Cachirulo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda en Restaurante Cachirulo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda en Restaurante Cachirulo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda en Restaurante Cachirulo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda en Restaurante Cachirulo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding / Boda en Restaurante Cachirulo, Zaragoza, Spain

Wedding: Candid photos of Merche & Hernan, Toledo, Spain

Saturday January 18th, 2014 01:11 PM

Foto de boda Toledo, Castilla-La Mancha, Spain | Foto de James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org

One of the weddings from last autumn that I enjoyed the most was that of Merche & Hernan in Toledo. Why was it so good? Well, in part because Toledo is a beautiful city and new to me; I always like the challenge of working out of my comfort zone.

A second, key, element was the working relationship i built up with the couple. They live in Madrid I went to meet them at their home soon after they first contacted me. Six months later I returned to see them in Madrid and we spent a day doing a pre-wedding shoot. This meant that by the time of the actual wedding in Toledo they were super relaxed to have me around them snapping away. It led to lots of natural, candid and spontaneous shots.

What’s more, their laid-back relationship with me spread among their family and friends, resulting in a series of candid shots of them too.

Oh and if anyone is thinking of getting married in Toledo, I’m sure I can be available!!!

Foto de boda Toledo, Castilla-La Mancha, Spain | Foto de James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org

Foto de boda Toledo, Castilla-La Mancha, Spain | Foto de James Sturcke | www.sturcke.orgWedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org

Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org

Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org

Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org

Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org

Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org

Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org

Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org

Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org

Wedding photo | Foto de boda, Toledo, Spain | www.sturcke.org