Rangefinder Magazine: 30 Rising Stars of Wedding Photography 2014

I have been waiting (what feels like) FOREVER for today. Back in July I received an email to tell me that I had been nominated for Rangefinder Magazine's annual '30 Rising Stars of Wedding Photography'. I still get butterflies when I think about it.  I read and re-read the email a few times and then just sat staring at it.

WHAT??

This is a really prestigious, worldwide (gulp) industry 'award' for want of a better word.  Rangefinder describes it as "the best emerging talent in the industry today, nominated by industry insiders (blog and magazine editors, veteran photographers, vendor sponsors and RF editors) and judged by the Rangefinder editorial staff".

Photographers cannot nominate themselves. And I had no idea who had nominated me but I wanted to kiss them.

Some of the photographers who have graced this list in previous years are people I admire HUGELY... Fer Juaristi, Nordica, Nirav Patel, Emma Case, Logan Cole, Andria Lindquist, Marianne Taylor, Sean Flanigan (who I get to meet in Italy on a workshop in just a few weeks), Ed Peers and last but by no means least, the amazing Sassy from Assassynation.  I have pored over the list for the last couple of years, ogling the work of these inspirational photographers from all over the world... to think I could be on it too was crazy and very humbling.

After many hours, hundreds of photographs and a lot of swapping and changing I sent off my requested 30 images and tried not to think about it (I failed).

Rangefinder Magazine 30 Rising Stars of Wedding Photography_0002

Fast forward a month... email arrives....'We've Chosen!'.  A MILLION things went through my head - many of them expletives.  I wasn't expecting to hear until November... "Congratulations Claire! We at Rangefinder have chosen you as one of the 30 Rising Stars of 2014!'

WHAT??????

I don't think I squealed, I didn't even cry (unusual for me)... I was just floored and sat there in disbelief.  I told my husband, Dad and a few very close friends but I wasn't allowed to announce anything publicly until today and it's been killing me!

So yeah... I am on THAT list.  One of 30 Rising Stars... in the WORLD.  My mind is officially blown.  All because I got back off my honeymoon with a renewed love for photography and decided to sell my wedding dress to fund my first 'proper' camera.

A BIG shout out to my amazing couples...past, present and future. Whether you're featured above/in the magazine or not, it's you who make what I do possible and so much more than just a job.  Thank you.

I'm also thankful to Blair de Laubenfels, co-founder of JunebugWeddings.com, who nominated me (I later found out) and to the judges who chose my work from the 150 nominated.   And to Andrea, Kate, Ade, Maria, Anna and Nicola for helping me to choose which images to submit. Without you I would still be deciding!

Seriously proud to be joined on the list by the very talented Alan, Andy and Hannah.  To think Hannah and I had a mutual commiseration party all planned out involving Facebook chat and lots of gin. ;-)   I'm so excited to see who else is on there with us.

UPDATED:  You can view the full gallery here: http://rangefinder.shootproof.com/event/890104/view

Oddfellows wedding, Chester - Sarah & Jamie sneak previews

Sarah & Jamie clearly have connections to old Mother Nature because Friday was VERY grey and VERY wet.  And their wedding could not have been more perfect! The stunning dress, the Jimmy Choos, a big red bus, the boys in blue, a cake of two sides, a raging debate that went on for hours (who would win in a fight between Superman and Batman? - I don't know if it ever got settled), classic literature, a cute library card table plan and the best bride & groom cushions ever. Fact.

Mr & Mrs Bates, thank you for having me along, it was a wonderful day with a top bunch of people and I hope everyone stopped crying eventually.  Totes emosh!   Lots of love, enjoy these previews and catch up when you're back from mini moon. xxxx

A springtime Portmeirion wedding - Kat & John highlights

Portmeirion in springtime, a lego themed cake, an elegant Charlotte Balbier dress and lace jacket, the cutest floral shoes, movie tables (complete with my favourite, Serenity), amazing family and friends and most importantly, a wonderful couple who are just so natural with one another it was beautiful to see and and a pleasure to photograph. Thanks to everyone for humouring me when I wanted to do an extra confetti shot so I could capture it from both sides - especially the bridesmaids who held some petals back!  It was also really great to meet and work with the talented Clark & Palmer for the first time - can't wait to see them bring it all to life.

Needless to say I adored every second of this wedding.  Kat & John - thank you for choosing me to capture your day.  I wish you a happy mini-moon and Happy Easter!  Catch up when you're back. xxx

Chester Town Hall & The Cock O'Barton, Cheshire wedding - Hannah & Al

No it's not a duplicate... I have done two weddings recently at the Town Hall in Chester and then The Cock O'Barton... both for brides called Hannah... both of whom I used to work with.  And they know one another!  However they DIDN'T know about one another's wedding venue plans.  So spooky.  (Not to mention confusing!)

Anyway... just as before, it was a wonderful day with amazing weather, bags of emotion and a fantastic bunch of people.  Hannah & Al's beautiful little girl looked so cute in her Converse and in general all of the kids were adorable and highly entertaining.  I was there for the ceremony through to the speeches and was quite sad to leave which is always a sign of a good wedding.

Thank you guys, I loved spending time with you and your nearest & dearest.  Have a lovely mini-moon and catch up soon over a brew once you're in the new house!  xxxx