Award winning photo from a wedding in Norfolk

Award Winning Documentary Wedding Photography

Award Winning Photographer in Norfolk

I was over the moon to win an award yesterday for my documentary wedding photography from the folks at This Is Reportage (TiR).

This award was for one of my all time favourite images, a photo taken at Voewood, quite possibly, one of the best Norfolk wedding venues.

These awards attract thousands upon thousands of entries from all over the globe and it's incredibly tough to get one, with just the top 3% winning out! It's also a little crazy to be featured amongst extremely talented photographers, both at home and abroad, who I have admired for a long time!

Award winning photo from a wedding in Norfolk

This image - The Groom Room - has featured on the pages of TiR before, where I wrote a blog piece describing how it came about.

Here's just a little insight, taken from that post, about how I made this image ...

"I had finished taking some close up angles on the groom, his shoes, his cufflinks, buttoning up his shirt etc but [...] I had that nagging feeling there had to be something more. But time was pressing (as it ever is) and so, I packed my bag and was making my way (somewhat hurriedly) back to the bride to capture her exit from the bridal suite. I stopped on the way out, glanced back over my shoulder to say, “Good luck!” but instead, I bit my tongue and saw the frame that I’d been missing. [...] It can be hard to think straight at a wedding sometimes, there are often a thousand and one things rushing through your mind and time is always slipping away but this image reminds me to relax, to stay calm and to look for the bigger picture. It’s always there, somewhere!"

It's a real honour to receive an award from TiR, their ethos and tag line resonates so well with me - Because Moments Matter Most - at the end of the day that's what wedding photography is really all about for me! 📷

If you're interested in hearing more about my approach to capturing your wedding celebrations or, you would like to enquire about my availability, get in touch. I photograph weddings throughout Norfolk, the UK and Europe.

Want to see some more award winning wedding photography? Check this post out for more of my awards.


A Wedding at Bruisyard Hall

Wedding Photography at Bruisyard Hall, Suffolk

This was my first time at Bruisyard Hall and it did not disappoint. It's an incredibly beautiful Suffolk venue, surrounded by stunning gardens and parkland. Indoor and outdoor it is a wedding photographers dream!

I began  in the main Hall, photographing the Bridal party and the Groomsmen getting ready for the day ahead - there was a great atmosphere and you could feel the excitement growing as the morning progressed. Ashlea Gissing at The Beauty Box was on makeup and Elise Brabben on Hair.

The ceremony took place at St. Edmund's in Southwold. Robyn and her dad travelled in a classic American Cadillac, listening to Elvis classics, a theme that continued as she walked up the aisle to "Can't Help Falling in Love" being played on the church piano.

The sun was shining bright and the light inside the church was gorgeous- highlighting the detail in Robyn's wedding dress perfectly. Ryan in his tuxedo looked incredibly suave and Robyn looked absolutely stunning, escorted up the aisle by her dad who was beaming with pride. The couple were full of smiles throughout the ceremony and after tying the knot they hopped in the Cadillac and made their way, as newlyweds, back to Bruisyard Hall.

The reception was wonderful and everyone was in high spirits. Jazz A La Mode provided musical entertainment while the drinks were flowing and ahead of some insanely funny speeches before the Robyn and Ryan made their way to the dance floor for their first dance and partied until the small hours!

"I loved Rob’s candid and relaxed photography. The pictures were something really important to me and I knew that I didn’t want to have too many staged photos; looking through Rob’s galleries I knew that he would get it."

It was an absolute joy to be part of this day - much thanks to the happy couple for choosing me to capture it for them and a shout out to my second shooter, Craig McCaulay and to Trevor Fuller on video. It was a great team to work with. Here's a few of my faves from the day - enjoy!


Norwich Family Photographer

Norwich Family Photography

Family photography is a natural progression from my wedding photography. And when my couples allow me to back into their lives to photograph their family, it means more to me than receiving any number of Thank you cards, cake, gin or whisky (albeit, all of the afore mentioned items are very much appreciated)!

Truth be told, I haven't really been out of Lucy and Elliott's lives. They have been some of my biggest cheerleaders since I photographed their Hales Hall wedding in 2016. I have photographed several of their friends weddings, including a recent wedding at Hunters Hall. I also photographed Elliott's sister's wedding at Southwood Hall last Summer and will be catching up to the whole family for his brother's wedding in 2020! These guys are basically like family to me so, this shoot was about as far removed from hard work as is possible. They are just the most genuinely lovely people and I always knew they were going to make a lovely little family of their own. So, spending a morning with them and their gorgeous little boy recently, was a real treat!

"We have known Rob for just over three years now. He was our wedding photographer and provided us with the best memories we could ever ask for from our day. We are always complimented on our wedding photos! So, when we had our first baby there was no doubt that we wanted to have a family photography shoot with Rob. He came to our house and we just went about our normal activities, feeding, reading, playing! The photos Rob managed to get, just from a normal day in our life, are so gorgeous. They really just represent us as a family and captured such precious moments. I couldn't recommend him more as your photographer for either your wedding or as a family photographer. The natural photos are simply stunning and ones we will treasure forever. Thank you Rob, you're the best!!!"

I'm looking forward to catching up to another two of my previous wedding couples to photograph their families this Easter. If you're looking for family photography in Norfolk or, further afield, if you'd like to capture some of your own family memories, then, whether I've photographed your wedding or not, I'd love to hear from you!

A huge thanks to Lucy and Elliott for a wonderful shoot, some great coffee and some fantastic eats. Here's just a few of my faves with some of my faves - enjoy!

 


Hunters Hall Wedding

Wedding Photography at Hunters Hall

Hunters Hall and Wymondham Abbey were the two venues that acted as the backdrop to Claire and Owen's celebrations. Having grown up in Wymondham and being childhood sweethearts, getting married at the Abbey was the perfect location for their wedding ceremony.

Now based in the far North, I didn't get to meet with Claire and Owen, face-to-face, until a few weeks away from their wedding but after I had, I knew they were going to be great fun.

I started the day with Claire and assorted family and friends at her family home where I was joined by Leanna on make-up and videographers, Chris and Kelly. Then I spent a little time with Owen getting ready at The Feathers pub, before heading back to see Claire getting into her dress!

At the Abbey, surrounded by their amazing friends and family who, I'm sure, had all been waiting a long time for this moment, Claire and Owen finally made it official!

The reception was lovely, Claire and Owen are big Jurassic Park fans and came into the gardens at Hunters Hall to the John William's theme being played by a Brass Band. The weather was incredibly bright and hot, much was the way this Summer past and so, after drinks on the lawn, the shade of the barn was most welcome! The speeches were full of good humour and heartfelt words and before i knew it, shapes were being thrown on the dance floor and it was time for me to say my goodbyes. I'd had so much fun, it passed by in the blink of an eye. Luckily, I got a few photos to remember it by and so I'll leave you with these words from Claire ...

"Beautifully natural and candid photos was what we hoped for, but couldn't have expected just how well our day was captured. It really felt like we were reliving the day..."

Thanks so much guys for having me along, I had the best time - enjoy!


southwood hall wedding photography

Southwood Hall Wedding Photography

Southwood Hall Wedding Photography

Natalie and James' wedding at Southwood Hall started out a little on the warm side and just got warmer and warmer from there! By warm, I mean blistering heat - this was an early afternoon wedding scheduled right in the middle of the 2018 heatwave! Fortunately, I was in shorts for the occasion. In fact, much of the weddings I photographed in the Summer meant that many a poor, unfortunate, soul was exposed to my pasty white legs. But I digress, this Southwood Hall wedding would have been a hot one whatever the weather because James and Natalie are bloody gorgeous people, inside and out! And it was amazing to share their day with them. I've known these guys for a couple of years now, ever since I photographed Natalie's brother's wedding at Hales Hall and I'm really looking forward to catching up with the family again in 2020 for Natalie's elder brother's wedding!

"I must say, before looking I was nervous incase there weren't any I loved but looking through the entire reel I was beaming. You captured the day so perfectly and the pictures are really beautifully taken and edited. I am absolutely thrilled with what you have provided us and can't wait for everyone to see them now we're back. You are such a fun guy to have around at a wedding and have a real skill at making people feel comfortable throughout the shoots. I can't imagine it was one of the easiest weddings to capture considering how hot it was so your efforts running around all over the place to capture the perfect shots are extremely appreciated. Also huge kudos for somehow making us look non-sweaty, a huge achievement in itself ha! Thank you so much for your time, I am absolutely delighted as is James."

A Summer Garden Wedding

So, the main event, a gorgeous Summer wedding underneath a rose arch in Southwood Hall's walled garden. As Natalie came up the aisle she was beaming ear to ear catching the eye of her guests and seeing James at the top of the aisle.

When the reception hit, a few guests sought shelter inside Southwood Hall for a little cool down but the majority stayed outside to enjoy drinks on the lawn before sitting down to the wedding breakfast and a series of speeches that had them in absolute stitches!

The party didn’t stop until late into the night, giving everyone a chance to hit the dance floor a well as find time to get some of Southwood Hall's stone-baked pizzas - nom, nom!

A truly wonderful day, I had the pleasure of working alongside Mellissa Abel on make-up, Mike, from Capture Media, on video and the truly lovely, Dane and Rebecca, from Snapsation, on the Photo Booth! Props to all the team at Southwood too for working so hard in the heat to keep it all going.

Here's a few pics from an utterly beautiful day - thanks to Natalie and James for having me along for the ride!


Wedding Photojournalist Award

Masterpiece Award Winner - the Wedding Photojournalist Association

I am thrilled to say that I won an award yesterday for Best Documentary Wedding Photography from the Wedding Photojournalist Association (WPJA). This award means a lot to me because the WPJA "reserves membership to select photographers around the world whose portfolios and practices demonstrate talent, expertise and client service in wedding photojournalism." Not only that but some of the other award winners in this collection are documentary wedding photographers I have long admired and looked up to for their wedding photography. I am honoured to be amongst such great company. These awards are judged by news photo editors and award-winning photojournalists (including Pulitzer Prize winners!), looking for images that "use the tools of photographic narrative to tell a couples story", no posing or fakery, just moments - a few portraits aside, that's what my approach is all about!

The shot that the judges chose is from a recent wedding in Portugal, the wedding of Lee & Jordan during their preparations. It captures the love and excitement of Jordan's soon-to-be Mother-in-Law and I am so pleased that my first Masterpiece Award came from their wedding day. You can see more from their wedding in Portugal here.

UPDATE November 2018: Honoured to be included amongst the WPJA's top 50 UK Wedding Photographers - happy days!

UPDATE 4 June 2019:

Since I first published this post, I have won a number of other awards for my wedding photojournalism. It's a an honour to be recognised for my work by the WPJA among others, especially for images that are moment driven and unposed! Here's a selection of the winning images:

This image is from a wedding at Bruisyard Hall in Suffolk, UK. I had two choices as Robyn walked down the stairs to see her dad. I could have stayed at the top and had an aerial view of Robyn descending but something in my gut told me to go downstairs. I hid behind a curtain, so I wouldn't draw Robyn's attention and I'm so glad that I did - this is most definitely one of my favourite images from 2018.

This image is from a wedding at Childerley Hall, near Cambridge, UK. As the wedding guests sheltered under their umbrellas, I was looking to make an interesting image that captured the, fortunately, short-lived rain shower. I was drawn to make this image by the expressions on the guests faces, the bright red lipstick and the smiling eyes as the sun was spotted breaking through the clouds.

This is one of my all time favourite images, from one of my all time favourite venues, Voewood in Norfolk, UK. This house can throw some shapes - see more about how I created this image here!

Sheer delight at the words pronouncing you husband and wife - this image from an intimate winter wedding at a Dairy Barns Wedding in Norfolk!

A perfect little shaft of light, falling upon the newlywed couple, made for one of my favourite exposure at this gorgeous wedding at the Hotel Du Vin in Cambridge.

Friends and family gather around to help the bride with some readjustments to her dress - this picture from a Bruisyard Hall Wedding in Suffolk.

Newly-wed husbands, seen here in fits of laughter, during their wedding speeches. I knew I wanted to capture this close up, so I got low to the table with a wide-angle lens and waited for the jokes to deliver the perfect moment. This photo was taken at a destination wedding in Portugal.

At a late autumn wedding, in Cambridgeshire, there wasn't much time, before sunset, to take portraits after the speeches but luckily, we found a little pocket of golden light, just enough to make this portrait of the bride and groom and win me an award from the Artistic Guild of Wedding Photographers.

And another from Bruisyard Hall, our bride, Robyn, beaming from ear to ear at the necklace her, soon to be, husband had delivered to her room. Her expression says it all and I just love the smiles on the faces of her friends, gathered round her as they got ready for the wedding celebrations.

I hope you've enjoyed looking at these images - for more information about my approach to your wedding photography, take a look at this page all about my style and approach.


Childerley Hall Wedding Photographer

Childerley Hall Wedding Photography

Jen and Alex's wedding took place at Childerley Hall, Cambridge, this Summer - an Elizabethan house set within the most stunning gardens! It is also home to one of the longest timber framed barn wedding venues in England - a humongous space for entertaining!

This wasn't my first time at Childerley Hall, I had been the photographer at a Childerley Hall Wedding just a few weeks before. So, I was really looking forward to going back. It wasn't the first time I'd met Jen and Alex either, they booked me as their wedding photographer, after I photographed their friends getting married at the Old Hall in Ely, the year before. So, it was nice to be back in familiar surroundings and amongst some familiar faces!

I began the day with the boys for a few photos of them getting ready, before heading to the Bride and Bridesmaids who were getting ready at home. Everyone was in good spirits and there was plenty of smiles and laughter from the off!

As the ceremony started, Alex looked a little nervous but Jen came beaming up the aisle and the minute he saw her, he visibly relaxed as she could not contain her excitement at seeing him!

"Thank you so much Rob for the truly wonderful memories you have given us. You captured all the special (and of course drunken) moments from our big day. Our guests absolutely loved you, you blended in and made everyone feel so comfortable!"

The weather was up and down all day, one minute the brightest sunshine, the next minute rain showers that came out of nowhere and disappeared almost as quickly but the rain didn't spoil the fun, some of my favourite images are guests laughing through the rain. The worst of the weather had, pretty much, passed over by the time the wedding breakfast and speeches had taken place. The speeches were fantastic, Jen and Alex also have a great sense of humour and everyone was laughing.

The evening entertainment was provided by Swagger - an amazing local wedding band who I would highly recommend! They had the dance floor going late into the evening.

A brilliant day to have been a part of and really lovely seeing some old faces again too. Here's just a few from Jen and Alex's day - enjoy!


Proposal Photography

Proposal and Engagement Photographer in the UK

Ok, so booking a wedding photographer for one of the biggest days of your life, your wedding, almost goes without saying! But have you considered having your proposal photographed? Weird huh? Maybe not! While in the UK, proposal photography is not a big thing, in the US it's becoming an increasingly popular way to capture memories of the moment. The Knot's 2017 Jewelry & Engagement Study found that nearly half of all the couples they surveyed planned to hire a photographer or videographer to capture their proposal.

Now this definitely won't be for everyone but as wedding photographer, capturing special and intimate moments for people to look back on is what I do and if someone (maybe you) were looking for a photographer to capture their proposal, I'd be there in a heartbeat!

And if proposal photography isn't your cup of tea, then you can always choose to surprise your bride or groom to be with an engagement shoot instead - I've photographed loads of those and they're always great fun. So, either way, whether you're looking for someone to capture your engagement on the day itself or, someone to take some pictures of you both in the run up to your wedding day, look me up - I'd be happy to see what I can do for you!

Here's a small selection of pictures for you to have a look at and get an idea for what I can do. If you want to see some more then check out this pre-wedding session at Southwold, or maybe some engagement photography in North Norfolk or, this pre-wedding session in Portugal, just in case you're planning on a destination wedding -because I do those too!

If you'd like to book me for your engagement photography, discuss your proposal or, your wedding plans, call me - I'd love to hear some more!

Norwich e-shoot 16


Godwick Hall Wedding Photography

An Outdoor Wedding at Godwick Hall

Godwick Hall Wedding Photography

WOW! This was my first time at a Godwick Hall wedding and that sense of amazement, the WOW stayed with me all day! Godwick Hall was the most perfect outdoor wedding venue for Lucy and Simon’s big day! Gorgeous blue skies and blazing hot sunshine made for a spectacular al fresco wedding. 

I first met Lucy and Simon to discuss their wedding at Godwick Hall in December 2016! We met over coffee at the Georgian Townhouse in Norwich and I knew then that their day was going to be one to remember. I couldn't wait until August 2018 to see them again so, we hooked up in January this year, for their pre-wedding photography in Wells and so, by the time their wedding had come around, they felt like old friends. I've known them almost two years now!!! Anyone who has met them will attest to just how bloody lovely they are, their humour and good nature is infectious - just a joy to be around! 

I got to photograph this one alongside wedding videographer, Pete Henderson, another good friend and I was also alongside the talented Leanna Stibbon, make-up artist in Norfolk and Flamingo Amy on hair, making this day extra special! 

Starting in the Farmhouse for the bridal preparations, I wandered the rooms, soaking up the atmosphere before making my way down to Godwick Great Barn where, outdoors, the hay bales and flower arch were all laid out, awaiting the wedding guests and their bride and groom!  Soon enough the Godwick tractor began to escort Lucy’s bridesmaids to the venue before collecting Lucy and her dad. At the top of the aisle, Simon waited with his brother and groomsmen, sharing jokes to keep the nerves at bay.  

A wonderful ceremony followed. The vows were amongst some of the most heartfelt I’d heard but you couldn’t see my tears for the sweat (sorry for the image) - this one was a scorcher! Wiping my brow, I continued to photograph the newlyweds and their friends and family. It was perfect weather for guests to enjoy the grounds and garden games, before taking in some shade in the barn for the wedding speeches. It was too hot to take photos of the happy couple at this point, outdoors at least and so we nipped into the bell-tent and Lucy and Simon had a little cuddle!

After the speeches and an afternoon tea, there was plenty of dancing and drinking and getting all glittered up at the Love Moi Glitter Bar (me included, see below!). This all kept the party going through until the small hours, sustained by food and amazing flavours courtesy of Christophe's Crepes - seriously good stuff! 

So many favourite memories from this day, it’s hard to pin one down. But everyone singing along to Champagne Supernova at the end of the night and Simon dipping his bride to give her kiss, to applause from everyone around them is definitely up there! 

Thanks guys for choosing me. And thanks for the good times - may there be many more to look forward to - enjoy! 

"Rob they are incredible. You've captured our personalities perfectly. Took me a full 29 seconds before I became a blubbering Mess! (Simon found it a bit too funny!!) "


A Keeper and the Dell Wedding

Wedding Photography at the Keeper and the Dell

Rachel and Andy’s wedding at the Keeper and the Dell was such an incredible day to be a part of, made no less so for being able to catch up to, Laurs and Matt, a bride and groom whose wedding I photographed a few years ago, as well as some of their same friends and family.

Rachel and Andy got married in an outdoor ceremony at Keeper and the Dell - an idyllic woodland wedding venue in Norfolk between Norwich and Fakenham. They both looked absolutely amazing. Andy dressed in a sharp suit and shades and his beyond stunning bride in her Jimmy Choos - a gorgeous pair of strappy high heels - tea length wedding dress and a colourful floral headpiece perfectly matched to her bouquet!

"Thank you so much for capturing the day perfectly, it really was like having another friend at the wedding. 😊 Your amazingly shot pictures will keep the memories of our wedding alive for years to come. Anyone looking for a photographer, look no further Rob Dodsworth is a must! Xx"

The day was one of the most relaxed weddings I have ever had the pleasure to be a part of and tradition was well and truly out the window which, is precisely what the couple had planned and hoped for! Their goal for their big day was for it to be fun and laid back - perfect for my style of wedding photography and The Keeper and the Dell most certainly lends itself to that kind of vibe. Drinks were served pre-ceremony, while the Bride and Groom mingled with their guests for a good hour or so before they tied the knot. With everyone in good spirits and the sun shining bright, guests took their seats for an informal ceremony, conducted by Andy’s dad and Rachel’s brother. You can see from the photos how much fun they had with it!

After the ceremony, there was plenty more fun and games, lots more drinking and dancing to tunes by Miserable Man, who was anything but - seriously, check him out!

There were no formal speeches, receiving lines or, cake cutting, Rachel and Andy took to the balcony to thank everyone for coming but otherwise the day really was as free-wheeling as it is possible to be - the band playing late into the night as the party, I’m sure continued ’til the early hours!

A fantastic day to be able to play a part in, I was treated just like an old friend and I would not have wanted to be anywhere else!

Thanks you so, so much Rachel and Andy - wishing you all the happiness and I hope you’ll enjoy your photos for many years to come!

Outdoor Wedding Venue in NorfolkAn outdoor wedding ceremony at Keeper and the DellWedding Photography at Keeper and the DellAerial view of Keeper and the Dell in NorfolkBride and Groom portrait at a Keeper and the Dell Wedding