Documentary and Creative Portrait Photographer Covering Central Scotland
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How to Look and Feel Great for your Engagement Session

Engagement sessions are fabulous. They are an opportunity for me as your photographer to learn your story as individuals, how you came together, and to illustrate the love that you share. My preferred style for these sessions is very much laid-back. I want to capture some of your individuality through your expressions and interactions, whilst giving you an insight into how I will capture your wedding day.

They can be as short or as long as you like, but are usually 1-2 hours, and I am relaxed about tailoring these sessions to meet your ideas and preferences. Some people prefer an entirely documentary approach, whist others expect more direction and creative portraiture. It’s entirely up to you.

I usually ask if you have a special location that means something to you both. This allows me to get off to a great start in making these sessions all about you and your relationship. Locations can be anywhere - natural, or industrial - what is crucial is that the location reflects both of you. Places that inspire, or with sentimental meaning. There is no ‘standard’, and often the most special of locations are those in the most unusual places so don’t be afraid to make quirky and obscure suggestions! 

Clothing. I get asked about this a lot. Like locations, the important thing is that your clothing is a true reflection of you and is comfortable. Often people feel the pressure to look good in front of the camera, and this can end in choosing clothing which may not help you to relax and be yourself. The better you feel in your clothes, the better you will feel in front of the camera. 

Solid primary colours are a great way of making you both pop out from most environments. Black is tempting but shows every speck of dust. Ideally, your clothing choices should complement each other, but not match. Unless, of course, you wear matching outfits every day! Dress as though you are attending the same event and think about the accessories you can wear which bring your outfits together. Avoid logos, graphics on shirts and baseball caps. 

Think about the location when choosing colours. If we’re shooting in a park, greens will blend with the environment. Choose something complementary instead that will make you pop from the background, such as blue or red. It’s usually best to leave bags and purses behind. Similarly, bulging wallets and mobiles phones in pockets don’t work well in photographs, so either leave them in a safe place or give them to me to carry. Equally if there is something special you’d like to incorporate, or a pet, then absolutely do! 

If you plan to wear makeup on your wedding day, this can be a good time to co-ordinate your makeup trial with your makeup artist. Cameras have a sneaky way of exaggerating uneven skin tones and blemishes, so it’s important that your choice allows you to feel comfortable and confident in front of the camera, whether it’s no makeup at all or just a little foundation and mascara. 

As always in photography, confidence is everything. Wear something in which you will feel comfortable, feel free to move in, and something which complements your physical features. My favourite photographs are always those where the people clearly look and feel like themselves. 

That all said, don’t forget, this is simply a guide. There are no do-or-die rules and I hope that these tips help you in planning for your next session with me!

Special Offer - Winter 2017/Spring 2018 Weddings

Are you getting married between 01 September 2017 and 01 June 2018? Not yet booked your photographer? I have a very special offer for you! Stunning documentary and creative wedding photography, with up to £200 off my regular package pricing, AND the chance to win a FREE luxury storybook album worth £395! (*T&Cs apply).

My aim is to tell your story as it happened, capturing the emotion that will draw you back into that moment and allow you to relive it over and over again. 

1. The Love Collection (coverage of ceremony to speeches) Normally £700, reduced to £550! 

2. The Honour Collection (coverage of bridal preparation to first dance) Normally £850, reduced to £675!

3. The Cherish Collection (coverage of full day) Normally £995, reduced to £775! 

MORE! From all the couples who book me as their wedding photographer for weddings taking place between 01 September 2017 and 01 June 2018, one lucky couple will be chosen at random to win a free luxury storybook album worth £395! 

Please see the here for more information about what is included in each one of my standard wedding packages, and be sure to check the terms and conditions in the comments.

*Terms and Conditions:
  • Limited dates available and Dearly Photography cannot guarantee that your date will be available at the reduced pricing.
  • Only one luxury storybook album is available and only one couple will be chosen at random following the closing date of this offer (31/01/2018).
  • One couple will receive a 12x10” Bellissimo Perfetto Landscape Storybook Album with Acrylic Cover and 10 spreads (20 pages). Additional spreads can be purchased if the chosen couple wish to do so.
  • Reduced pricing is only applicable to weddings taking place in Central Scotland. 
  • 50% deposit required within 2 weeks of booking to secure your date with Dearly Photography.
  • Winner of the free luxury storybook must be happy and willing to feature on Dearly Photography website and social media pages.
  • This offer is available to purchase from 10/08/2017 to 31/01/2018 and only applicable for weddings taking place between 01/09/2017 and 01/06/2018.
  • Winner of the free storybook album will be notified via Facebook message or email by midnight on 07/02/2018.
  • Dearly Photography reserves the right to use all material from the wedding shoot for promotional purposes.
  • The free luxury storybook album can not be exchanged or returned and no cash alternative is available. 

#WeddingWisdoms

1. The Key to Natural, Documentary Photography on your Wedding Day.

Listen up, my young Padawan. I have much to teach you. That's the first and last Star Wars quote, I promise! This is the first in a new series of tips to help you as you prepare for your special day.

The truth is, very few people in the world enjoy having their photograph taken. By sharing some practical advice, I hope to help you relax and enjoy your special day to the fullest possible extent. Many choose me because of my natural, documentary style and as a photographer, I am hired for my specific style and vision. If I don’t communicate what I need in order to achieve this, ultimately my ability to capture this will be hindered on the day.

The most enjoyable aspect to my approach is the freedom to roam and capture the narrative of the day as it unfolds. For this approach to be effective, it is essential that there is a positive relationship with your photographer. Don't hire someone that you don't 'click' with, regardless of price of other tempting factor! 

Every couple has a love story and as your photographer, I always want to meet you before your big day to get to know you as a couple. I want to know how you met, how you fell in love and how you proposed. This allows us to connect meaningfully which will make it much easier for you and your partner to relax in my company on your special day. It also has the added benefit of making my job easier when it comes to blogging about your wedding!

Hopefully by the time your wedding day comes round, we'll know each other well and you'll both be at ease in my company. The advice I offer to all my couples is simply to relax in the presence of the photographer, let them blend into the background and don't react to the camera. Forget that they are even there. Try to see the photographer as just another guest at the wedding, and you will find that I go about my business in an entirely unobtrusive way. I work really hard to build a special relationship with all my couples, and their guests. This lets me get in nice and close to catch those beautiful and touching moments that define weddings and make them incredibly special. 

By utilising these skills, I love to create powerful photographs which truly convey the emotion of the day. I rarely find a posed portrait pleases me more than one I've caught candidly, and most couples I've worked with tend to agree.

What's in a name?

My name is David Early, and I am a relatively new father to two beautiful children, Jonah and Jessica. I have always had a passion for photography and the natural environment which I explored through landscapes and wildlife. I have been shooting landscapes for over a decade and over this period, I became increasingly inspired by light. For me, light, particularly natural light, is the fundamental element that underpins all aspects of photography. Light can drastically change the tone of an image; elevating the bland and boring into something that is bold and beautiful. 

Dearly Photography. What does it mean? Brands. Logos. Design. When trying to conceptualise a brand for my photography, I felt that it had to be based on more than just 'David Early Photography'. I wanted it to reflect my passions and the services that I would offer, yet I also needed it to describe the experience and aesthetic that people can expect if they choose to book with me. After all, it is the 'brand' that most of my customers will first interact with; it is crucial that this connects me with people and also instils a sense of trust and confidence. The fonts, colours, textures, and expressions of my brand aim to capture and convey the mood of my photography to my clients, which you can read more about here.

That all said, I still wanted my brand identity to be personal to me and not simply a catchy, trend-driven concept. I wanted it to be flexible, to enable it to evolve alongside me, the photographer, and my style. When I thought about all of the different aspects of my shooting style, from concept to final product, and how to describe them, the word that continually came to mind was 'dearly'. Each moment I capture on camera is dear to me. 

Through my photography, I aim to capture people in their ordinary, or natural, environment and document real-life experiences and interactions in an artistic manner. In my mind, this generally can't be done in a studio, at least not in a meaningful, captivating way. You won't see many traditional, posed portraits in the classic studio setup, which far too often do not convey anything typical or unique to the people in front of the lens. Of course, there is a balance to this. I would always try to meet individual requirements and expectations, without sacrificing what it is that makes photography special to me. It is the blend of capturing people doing things that they would ordinarily do, whilst being creative and applying my own vision and aesthetic to the final image. 

It is the intersection of being the director and the unnoticed observer. 

This is how Dearly Photography was born. It is exceptionally convenient that my brand is also a transposition of my first initial into my surname, which is what makes this so unique to me and my style.