Scene Stealers - The Kids are Alright...Really!

Should we have children at our Wedding? ...

…it was one of the first questions we had to address at our wedding and it no doubt comes up fairly early on for most couples planning a wedding.

I love children at weddings, they’re unpredictable and for this reason it makes them a joy to photograph (see a few of my recent favourites below).  But for a Bride and Groom planning the wedding of their dreams, the prospect of a temper tantrum during their vows might well be enough to put them off.

We took the decision to invite children from close family only, it was a tough decision but we made it clear early on.  We telephoned friends to let them know in person and in order to avoid misunderstanding and save hurt feelings later on.  I can’t remember it being a big issue, in fact, for most people, it was an opportunity to get the babysitter in, have a night off and let their hair down.  Ultimately, it has to be a personal choice and whatever you decide, it will be the right choice for you.

If you do have children at your wedding here's one really fun way to keep them entertained (and it's photography themed!).  It's become quite common to have disposable cameras on the table at a wedding but had you ever thought of combining this with a game of I-Spy?  Well here you will need copies of this card, disposable cameras, and pencils at each child's table setting.

Martha-Stewart I-Spy

(via Martha Stewart Weddings)

The idea is that using the card, the children can go off on a photographic scavenger hunt ticking off items on their list as they capture them on camera.  The winner is the first child to tick off all the items on their list but, to save any fall-out, a small prize for all the completed cards wouldn't be a bad idea!  Some younger children might need help from an elder sibling, or, adult guest but otherwise this should keep them busy for a while.  A little bit of healthy competition from your younger guests should also help to keep your photographer on their toes and you never know, they might surprise you with the results! Just promise not to bruise my pride if they do ;-)

Rob Dodsworth is a wedding photographer in Norfolk working throughout the UK and Europe.  If you are planning a wedding in Norfolk, or further afield and would like to have an informal chat about your wedding photography then please get in touch. I look forward to hearing from you!

Article updated: 2 April 2018

Bride and groom on the dance floor at voewood

Amy & Greg's Voewood Wedding

A Voewood Wedding in North Norfolk

Before we begin, it's only fair I pay credit to the Red Hot Chilli Peppers and S Club 7 for their respective influences to the copy in this here blog post! Two bands, I'm fairly sure, aren't often mentioned in the same breath. I'm not ashamed to say I am a bit partial to both of them. And my eclectic taste in music works well here, for, it is to Voewood we go today. A wedding venue in Norfolk that is, most certainly, a little eclectic itself!

Ok... so it's no secret that I love Voewood! It's beyond exceptional. It's kooky, quirky, whimsical and wonderful and many other superlatives beside. It's a place I never tire of returning to. Not far from the North Norfolk coast and the Georgian town of Holt, it's a country house like no other. You honestly have to see it to believe it. And so, when, in 2017, no less than 3 couples chose me to capture their wedding at this extraordinary wedding venue, I was absolutely thrilled.

On Amy and Greg's big day I was joined by Videographer extraordinaire, Mike, from Capture Media. We began with the bride and her bridesmaids in the bridal suite at Voewood, spirits were high and Amy's sister entertained us all, to help Amy with a few nerves.

Afterward, Mike and I made our way to join the groom and groomsmen at a pub near the church. Unfortunately, there was no time for us to grab a pint on this occasion, there was already so much going on and we both set straight to capturing it.

The sun was certainly shining on this bride and groom for their big day, streaming through the windows of the house and their church and adding to the atmosphere as they exchanged their vows in front their friends and family.

As the bells rang out from the Church of the Annunciation, on Friday Market in Little Walsingham (picture perfect this was!), Amy and Greg got into a 1960 Ford Zephyr Mk. II Convertible, an amazing set of wheels in which to be transported back to Voewood. And as they flew away on their Zephyr, I'm fairly sure they felt it more than ever and in that perfect weather, they found a place together 😜

Dashing off ahead of the new Mr and Mrs I got back to Voewood to set up ready for their arrival. The house and gardens looked stunning and Amy and Greg, their friends and family made the most of the dry weather and we made a few portraits outside as they were entertained to the sounds of a jazz band! Drinks on the lawn followed before some cracking speeches and the most wonderful food laid on by Florentina Events, before the evenings entertainment ensued and the couple took to the dance floor. And as everyone who has been to a wedding at Voewood knows - their ain't know party like a Voewood Party!🤦

Here’s just a few frames from their special day – enjoy!

engagement photography on the norfolk coast

Engagement Photography

Pre-Wedding Photography

With my first wedding of 2018 coming up this weekend, the blog may take a back seat for a while and so, before the wedding season starts, a little look at  pictures from some of the wonderful couples I've had the pleasure of getting together with this past month.

First up, Rhea and Pieter who are getting married at one of my favourite venues, Narborough Hall. It's been too long since I last had the opportunity of a wedding at Narborough Hall but I will be hooking up with this gorgeous couple in September to photograph what I'm sure will be an incredible day!

We spent some time on a rather damp and windy day in Norwich but the weather did nothing to dampen our spirits and these two were all smiles throughout. We ate, we drank and we had a great time catching up about their plans. I can't wait to see them again!

Norwich pre-wedding photography

Next up, Hannah and Adam in the beautiful and historic city of York. I first met Hannah several years ago, at one of my early weddings in 2009 and almost a decade later, it felt like meeting an old friend. It was an absolute pleasure to spend the day with Hannah and Adam, catching up and hearing some more about them and their plans for the big day.

Their wedding at Middleton Lodge Estate, in North Yorkshire, takes place later this year and it looks like an amazing place to spend the day!

Here's just one from a fabulous couple of hours wandering around York together, as the sun set on the Minster.

a wedding portrait in York

Most recently, I got to spend an afternoon in the company of Emily and Tom. I absolutely love the North Norfolk Coast and I might love these two a little bit as well! They treated me to a pint after the shoot - a sure fire way to my heart for anyone reading and thinking about booking me for their pre-wedding photography!

North Norfolk coast + good light + good company + cosy fireside pint = winning. It was a great afternoon!

I'll be back at the wonderful Hautbois Hall, in the not too distant future, for more fun with these two - it's sure to be a good one!

engagement photography on the norfolk coast

If you're planning a wedding in 2019/2020 and fancy some pre-wedding photos to celebrate your engagement, then contact me to find out more!

Bridal Hair & Makeup | 3 Top Tips

Wedding Hair and Makeup in Norfolk | Preparing for your Wedding

There are plenty of things to consider as you approach your special day. The walk down the aisle, the cutting of the cake and the all-night dancing in celebration are getting closer and closer. If you’ve curated, chopped and changed a to-do list for your wedding day, it will probably boil down to these five things:

And Rob Dodsworth Photography can be there to take care of all your photography requirements, to document your wedding day from your last-minute dress alterations, all the way to the first dance. However, to create consistently wonderful photographs for you to cherish for years to come, there’s one aspect you may not have considered. Professional hair and makeup is an easy and time-saving method to achieve the hairstyle and understated makeup that you desire. By calling upon an experienced hair and makeup beautician you can feel confident from top to toe in your wedding dress on your special day.

A portrait of Gemma Holiday Norfolk Hairstylist at a Norwich wedding

Your wedding day is one that will be remembered for decades in the future through social media, printed photographs and framed pictures. Having your hair in the right place and your makeup shaping your face perfectly will go a long way to making those photos shine!

a bride in her wedding makeup by Flamingo Amy

So long as you are confident to do it yourself and not worry, there is absolutely nothing wrong in choosing to do your own hair and makeup. But it will take very careful planning and practice to ensure that everything runs as smoothly as possible on the big day. My advice would be, if you are in any doubt, whatsoever, about your skills in this area, hire a professional to do your hair and makeup for you.

Ashley from Primp Powder Pout makeup artist in Cambridgeshire

I have heard horror stories (where people have done their own hair and makeup or, had a friend or, inexperienced hair and makeup artist) of updos falling and makeup running. If this is something you’d rather avoid, then read on.

Urban Decay wedding makeup

To help you make a decision during this important stage of your wedding planning, I’ve spoken to two highly regarded make-up artists and with their help have come up with the following three reasons why you should choose to hire a professional hair and makeup beautician for your wedding day:

1. A stress-free wedding morning

The morning of your wedding day should see you relaxed and care-free. Book yourself in with a local hair and makeup expert who can offer you the style you want and you’ll feel comfortable while you’re sipping on champagne with your closest friends. The cost of hiring an expert will save you time and keep your stress levels ice cold.

Primp Powder Pout wedding hairstylist

Ashley, from Primp Powder Pout, Cambridgeshire make-up and hair artist, told me,

“It's not just about making people beautiful but providing support on what can be a nerve wracking morning. A good artist should not only be able to recreate a look that the bride and themselves have agreed on but also to be the calming influence that takes their mind off the worries they may have. Helping keep timings in place, ensuring the bridal party is enjoying themselves but also making sure everyone is keeping calm to the lead up of the ceremony.”

Norwich makeup artist, Emily from Lovemoi makeup at a wedding at Southwood Hall in Norfolk

She adds,

“The artist is one of the last people to touch the bride before she walks down the aisle. It's an intimate job and a good artist should be able to play these two important roles in the morning.”

A Norfolk makeup artist putting the finishing touches to bridal makeup at Hautbois Hall

2. Feel amazing for the whole day

You should feel beautiful on your wedding day. Making the decision to have your hair and makeup prepared by a beautician will leave you feeling confident and assured in your dress throughout the day. This is not only from the very first steps down the aisle but until the very last dance. Professional hair will remain looking wonderful in your photographs and expertly applied makeup won’t run or fade from your face.

a Norfolk Bride on her wedding day

Gemma Holiday, award winning hairstylist in Norfolk and Suffolk, told me,

“I have heard stories of so many brides in sheer panic on the morning of their wedding when there makeup hasn’t gone right. Plus, having an experienced, professional wedding beautician can be more like having a wedding planner with you than simply a hair or makeup artist. They will make sure the morning runs smoothly and that it is super fun and relaxed. Hire someone to make your eyes pop, your skin look flawless and to help you to look and feel the best you ever have.”

Norfolk makeup artist Amanda Steed applying bridal makeup at a Norwich wedding

Ashley, a hair and makeup beautician with experience in the fashion and photographic industries, adds,

“A great hair and makeup artist can not only help create the ultimate , beautiful look that a bride has been dreaming of but they also will know how to enhance their natural beauty. Being a bride doesn't mean piling on the makeup because it's their wedding day, it's about taking their natural looks and turning them into the best version on their special day.”

Flamingo Amy applying makeup to a bride at a Georgian Townhouse wedding in Norwich

3. Spoil yourself

If you’re ever going to choose a day to say, “I deserve the best hair and makeup” your wedding day is exactly that. You’ll get to guide the style of your hair, make sure it befits your dress and looks jaw-dropping from every angle. The same goes for your makeup; when do you ever treat yourself to professional makeup?

wedding makeup in Norfolk

The superior difference that a makeup artist can provide when applying makeup will leave you feeling amazing. Gemma Holiday, bridal hair stylist, says,

“The photographer capturing the bride, the look on their face, their smile, when they first set eyes on their groom is what everyone looks at and the moment they say, “I do” is captured in beautiful photos that last forever. Hiring a professional hair and makeup artist will ensure you are looking your absolute best on your wedding day.”

bridal hair and makeup in Norfolk

Wedding planning can be stressful but it doesn’t need to be, there are many things you can devolve to the professionals so that you can sit back and relax. That, and a plethora of other benefits that hair and makeup experts can provide, will leave you with a bank of beautiful photographs to hold dear, frame and cherish far into the future.

If you are looking for a wedding photographer in Norfolk or Norwich, then get in touch and I’ll happily give you my recommendations for the best hair and makeup teams to choose from in your area. Ashley and Gemma are definitely in that group!

You can find out more about your wedding photography by speaking to me today.

Bride and Groom at Bressingham Hall Wedding in Norfolk

Bressingham Hall Wedding Photography

A Norfolk Wedding 

"Rob they are awesome. So completely overwhelmed. They really are amazing. You are a star. Ahhhhhg"

Kate and Liam's wedding ceremony took place in the village Kate grew up, near Diss in Norfolk. A crisp, sunny autumn day, I joined the girls at home for the bridal preparations before the short journey to the village church to join the boys. The church was beautiful, with light flooding every corner, it made for a stunning setting.

It was a fun and emotional wedding and the happy couple got so swept up in proceedings that they ended up having two first kisses, having jumped the gun the first time round. Hugs, kisses and confetti followed before Kate and Liam went for a ride around the countryside in a classic Bentley.

Wedding Photographer at Bressingham Hall

Bressingham Hall and High Barn is a fabulous Norfolk wedding venue, set amongst the world renowned Bressingham Gardens and located on the border of Norfolk and Suffolk. The gardens were a joy to work in and in between showers, we got some great portraits of the bride and groom as they spent some time laughing and joking together. The laughter along with tears of joy, continued throughout the afternoon as the wedding guests enjoyed a series of brilliant speeches.

All the fun of the Fair

As the evening approached, guests were treated to some olde world fairground thrills on Bressignham's Gallopers, a carousel of sorts which brought a smile to everyone's face, no matter their age! Later in the evening, after the cake was cut, Kate and Liam took to the dance floor to their favourite song, Elbow's "A Day Like This". They were surprised by their Best Man who had arranged for Guy Garvey himself to record his congratulations and announce them on to the dance floor - amazing!

I loved being a wedding photographer at this wedding. It was an incredibly special day with a really laid back group of friends and family, just the type of wedding I enjoy. So, a massive thanks to Liam and Kate for inviting me to be part of their special day. It was an absolute pleasure to play a part in and I hope you love your wedding photos - enjoy!

Update February 2018: Kate and Liam's nuptials were featured on So You're Getting Married! Here's what editor Phoebe had to say about it:

"Rob’s style feels exceptionally authentic and as if he simply blended in to the day. A perfect choice if you don’t want overly posed images"

Thanks Phoebe! 😊

Bressingham Hall Wedding PhotographyBressingham Hall WeddingBressingham Hall Wedding ReceptionBressingham Hall Wedding Photography










Wedding Photography at Sussex Barn, North Norfolk

Polly and Alex were married at Sussex Barn in North Norfolk. It was the second trip there for me in as many months, having photographed another wedding at Sussex Barn in September.

The morning began with the girls getting ready at the White House. The atmosphere was relaxed when I first arrived but people soon began busying around as the ceremony drew nearer. I spent my time between bridal preparations and the guests arriving to greet Alex at Sussex Barn, before Polly alighted a sidecar with her dad and were driven by a Yamaha XJ650 (I'm told the one that appeared in Never Say Never Again - although Q has since removed its capability to fire rockets) to join Alex at the top of the aisle.

Polly and Alex could hardly take their eyes of one another all day and there were some really tender and loving moments during their ceremony.

After some wonderful speeches, the newlyweds were surprised by a number of their guests joining together to form a choir and sing to them. Later on, they were serenaded by Polly's best friend as they took to the floor for their first dance. Polly and Alex told me that friends and family having a good time was key to their day and they booked me because they wanted informal candids of them enjoying themselves. The day was full of genuinely beautiful and heartfelt moments - it was really lovely to see how much their friends and family cared about them and how much they wanted to make their day extra special. I might have had a lump or two in my throat!

It was a grey, wet and dull day outside but far from a dull wedding - it was full of the warmth and love of their friends and family. I am so pleased to have been able to play my part in their celebrations. Thank you Polly and Alex for choosing me to capture it - enjoy!


Norwich e-shoot 16

Norwich Pre-Wedding Photography

Coffee, cake and a Norwich Market lunch date with Annabelle and Titch!

Last week I made my into Norwich for a coffee and to meet up with an amazing couple, Annabelle and Titch, for their pre-wedding photography. I knew that it was going to be a good shoot after chatting to Annabelle on the phone. She was just as fun, relaxed and easygoing in person. After being introduced to Titch and finding out a little more about their wedding plans, we made our way to Norwich Market. It was a beautiful morning, crisp clear skies and sunshine were the order of the day – perfect for us to take a wander and make some photographs.

These guys are clearly smitten with one other. They were giggles and smiles the whole day (it was infectious) - they made my work easy and so much fun! We enjoyed a lovely stroll around Norwich, taking in lunch at  Jakey La Bakey on the market (try the Croque-Monsieur!) and finishing off with cake and coffee at No. 33 - perfect! Oh and I took some pics along the way - have a look below.

The time I spent with these two absolutely flew by. Thanks guys for being such great fun - enjoy your images! :-)

Pre-Wedding Photography

Norfolk Engagement Photography

A few photos from some of the pre-wedding and engagement shoots I've had the pleasure of this month.

Pre-wedding photography in North Norfolk

First up was Lucy and Simon, who are getting married at Godwick Hall later this year. Luckily, they're getting married in August because our day out in Wells was just a little cold, by which, I mean, it was bloody freezing! So, we enjoyed some Fish and Chips to warm us up and sheltered from the cold in the cafe and the amusements. It was a great day out in one of my favourite parts of the North Norfolk Coast. Lucy and Simon were great fun to hang out with and I can't wait to catch up with them again.

Engagement Photography in North Norfolk

Later the same week, I spent the afternoon with Amie and Daniel. They're getting married in August 2019 at Glebe Farm Barn. We spent the day at Cromer and for the second time in almost as many days, I got to eat fish and chips ... again! I've decided that this is obligatory if you do any kind of seaside or beach pre-wedding photography with me. Another freezing cold day, I got soaked to the bone as I was wiped out by a wave! But warming up by the fire, with a hot chocolate, in the Red Lion and Amie and Daniel for company afterwards made it totally worthwhile! A really relaxed and fun couple to be around, I can't believe I have to wait so long before I'll get to photograph them again! I laughed non-stop and if their friends and family are anything like Amie and Daniel then their wedding is going to be one heck of a party!

London Engagement Photography 

Luke and Jodie are getting married at Pinewood Studios! They had their engagement photos in London. It was the one day of the week where it absolutely chucked it down all day long! I got drenched through ... again but they treated me to a slap up meal where I managed to dry off and give my cameras some time to dry as well. The barmaid tried to wet us all again by spectacularly dropping our drinks from the tray on her way to our table but the food and company more than made up for having soggy socks! I love a couple who aren't bothered by the weather, they smiled and cuddled their way through in spite of the cold and wet - loved it!

DIY Barn Wedding in Suffolk

A DIY Barn Wedding in Suffolk

A Sunny Summer Suffolk Wedding in Wenhaston

A wonderful early Summer sunny Suffolk Wedding in Wenhaston (try saying that more than a few times coherently!) was the order of the day for Lucy and Tom! And what a day it was!

I started off with Lucy and her closest friends and family for the bridal preparations. Everyone was in high spirits and there was a real buzz of energy. A short walk down the road, I was able to capture some photos of the guys as well before they took the very short walk to church. The rain threatened but it passed as quickly as it came and by the time the ceremony came around, it was baking sunshine! But the church provided some respite from the sun just as the bell ringers got going – the light in the church was unbelievable and Lucy looked stunning as she made her way, beaming smiles at her soon to be husband, Tom.

The service was fantastic, the vicar was great fun and there were some really lovely readings too! Both beaming smiles as they walked back down the aisle Lucy and Tom hopped aboard a tractor and made their way to the farm and gardens where their celebrations really got going! It was not long before Tom and Lucy had their first dance - not in keeping with tradition perhaps but it really got the whole party started, taking the fun and energy up to 11 and it stayed that way throughout the whole day. I don't think I stopped for breath, there was so much going on but it didn't feel anywhere near like hard work, I was having so much fun photographing and documenting it all.

Rob was THE BEST photographer we could have wished for. On the day he put us at ease, made us laugh and fitted into our wedding party like he was a friend we would have invited. The photos he gave us were perfect. We adore each and every one of them. He really captured the love and laughter from the day and we'll treasure them forever.

The little details and the effort the whole family had put in to decorating the venue was amazing and although the sun was harsh we worked with the light and made the most of the colourful surroundings!

After some outdoor speeches, it was time for the wedding breakfast, where more speeches, fun and games ensued, with an absolutely hilarious game of Mr and Mrs!

Later, there was line dancing and then Lucy's dad got on the decks to play some Northern Soul classics, taking the party through into the early morning. But in spite of all the dancing, the heat and the drinking, some people still found time to go a little mad on the bouncy castle. I hopped in there and tried to take a few pics too. I think I fractured my nose as the flash gun hit me in the face but whatever - I was having too much of a good time to care. If I hadn't had another wedding the next day - I would probably have downed cameras and stayed on that bouncy castle for the night!

Thanks Lucy and Tom, you are a truly wonderful, wonderful couple and your day was absolutely the most amazing day in the best of company, I would not have wanted to be anywhere else - I hope you enjoy your images for many years to come!

DIY Barn Wedding in Suffolk

Another Voewood Wedding

Another Voewood wedding! I'm a lucky boy. This time on a gorgeous mid-Summer day for Louise and Jonny.

This was one of the smaller weddings I have done at Voewood but the people had more than enough personality, fun and laughter to fill the place.

I've written about how much I love visiting Voewood plenty of times and I can't wait to go back in 2018 and 2019! If you're planning a wedding at Voewood - look me up! Enjoy!