DUNHAM MASSEY WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER // MICK COOKSON

Amarjit and Andrew are getting married soon in Manchester, with a reception in Dunham Massey. I’m going to be their Dunham Massey Wedding Photographer – but first I had to be their Stanage Edge E-Shoot Photographer! For their Engagement (E-Shoot) they chose Stanage Edge in the Peak District for their folio. Being the lithe, athletic type myself, I jumped at the opportunity of climbing a ridge in 60mph winds – simple! When we arrived at base camp – a suitable car park, allowing for ‘couch climbers’ like me, the cloud level was too low to see anything – an almost total white-out. So, undeterred, we ventured back down towards civilisation and a stunning forest to warm us up. I was travelling light, using the new Nikon D600 on this occasion. The small, lightweight stature of the camera meant I could travel light too – just a trio of lenses in my tiny Crumpler bag. Wish it was like this on wedding shoots!

In keeping with my style of shooting, I just let Amarjit and Andrew be themselves – they knew the territory better than I, since they walk there most weekends. The mist was beginning to lift, and we got some great images in the bag, with virtually no direction from myself. After half an hour we ventured back up to base camp to attempt the ridge shot again. Good news! The mist had gone, replaced with a constant blustery wind which meant everybody was walking around at 45 degree angles. This was going to be interesting! Up we went, to the top, which only took a few minutes, granted, but my word, was that wind strong. The little Nikon did ever so well with the 24-70mm, 85mm  and 20mm lenses, and even at fast shutter speeds I was getting camera shake. It really was that rough – laughably enjoyable at the same time too….it was like being a kid again, trying to focus through streaming tears and a flapping North Face jacket. But we nailed it, and the images don’t really show the full force of the weather, but are perfect for what we were after –  a raw representation of Stanage Edge.

I just hope it’s not as windy when I’m their Dunham Massey Wedding Photographer.