What I learned from my own wedding


Amanda & Luke-144
It was a pretty bizarre feeling, finally having to plan my own wedding. I had been photographing weddings for so long, and seen so many different kinds of weddings, and to be honest, I hadn’t really ever thought about my own! I know some girls dream about their wedding day for years, know exactly what they want, and can’t wait for the 1 day in their life when they can feel like a beautiful princess – but that was not me.


I never pictured myself in a white dress (I’m practically as white as you can possibly get already, have you SEEN ME? Scottish/Welsh ancestry pretty much took care of that. So really, putting me in white dress would basically mean I would DISAPPEAR). I don’t like a lot of attention (despite this fact) and Luke and I are both pretty laid back, non-fancy people. So yeah. Planning a huge event was something that I (like a lot of you future and former brides out there!) didn’t really have any experience in.

In the end, we had a fantastic day! Luke and I kept all the decisions as simple and uncomplicated as possible (which had my mother FREAKING OUT) and the day was total smooth sailing. But what, if anything, I did I learn from my OWN wedding?

I guess this qualifies to go in my ‘advice from former brides’ category that I do on here, but this time I’M the former bride!


Have the wedding YOU both want.

Your wedding doesn’t have to be a huge, lavish, expensive affair (unless, of course, that’s what you WANT!) Let your wedding reflect who you ARE as a couple. Are you a bit goofy? Do you guys love 90s dance music? Are you into making references to your favourite TV shows that others probably won’t get at all*? Then let your wedding show all of that! You and your guests will enjoy a day full of your combined personality. That’s why they love you, right? There are a lot of old traditions that still buzz around ‘the wedding’, but you don’t have to have any of them if you don’t want. I didn’t wear a veil because I thought it was terribly old-fashioned (plus, I didn’t like it’s traditional connotations). Both of my parents walked me down the aisle because they both raised me equally (if anyone is ‘giving me away’ [insert roll eyes here] then it can be both of them!!). I didn’t wear a garter or toss a bouquet, and Luke and I didn’t have a traditional ‘waltz’ (we danced to Huey Lewis and The News instead. :D). We just wanted to have a really fun party with all our friends and family and that’s exactly what we had!

Amanda & Luke-226
*I may or may not be describing myself and Luke here.

Do your best to take time out for yourself before the wedding.

You’re going to have A LOT of people around you in the days leading up to, and on the day of, your wedding. Which could result in an almighty headache! (I woke up with one on my wedding day!) I recommend some quiet time, if you can get it. Go for a walk or have a bath. Chill out. It’s not supposed to be stressful, it’s supposed to be fun and joyous. And if you’re not sure that you can be responsible for yourself chilling out, have a family member or a girlfriend be your guardian! “She can’t see you right now, she’s taking a nap!”

Chat with your photographer about the little things.

Of course – there has to be a photography tip in here! This is something that, as a photographer, I really try to concentrate on anyway at every wedding I photograph, but it hit home just that much more when I became a bride! Did you do heaps of DIY for your wedding? What did you do/make? Is that ribbon around your bouquet that colour for a reason? Do you have people playing a part in your wedding who are really special to you? Are there elements of the day that are particularly important to you? Maybe you won’t think of it 'photography-wise' at the time, but if you chat with your photographer about details before the wedding, he or she might be able to take a photograph of something seemingly insignificant to everyone else but really important to you!

Wedding videography is underrated.

DID I MENTION HOW MUCH I FREAKING LOVE OUR WEDDING VIDEO? Ahem. Look into it, because it’s super fun and you’re only doing this once right? RIGHT?

The biggest thing I can say to you is – be yourself. I know it’s a little cheesy, but it’s the heart of the truth. And enjoy the whole process!!

Having now been a bride myself I feel like I’ve got something more to take in to each wedding that I photograph. I’m now seeing weddings through two sets of eyes – bride and photographer! Double the vision! Woah! Or four eyes? Mmm.

Kimberley and Joe–Engage!

Kimberley and Joe (and baby Lila!) and I FINALLY got together for a little engagement/family shoot last weekend, after weeks of trying to plan it and South East Qld’s weather deciding it wasn’t going to play ball! Finally the weather relented and we set off to the Benowa Botanical Gardens to take some sweet, pretty pics. :)

Kimberley and Joe are going for a vintage theme for their wedding next month, so we decided to style the engagement shoot to match. It was so much fun! Even if little Lila decided that sleeping in the sunshine was more her style for the morning – and really, on a glorious day like last Sunday, who’s to stop her?!

This is Kimberley and Joe – Engage!


Can’t wait to see you guys next month, Kimberley and Joe!! 4 weeks!!!

Goodbye, Maiko!

My sister has had an au pair from Japan staying with her for the past few months. Her name is Maiko. My sister lived in Japan for a number of years before she was married; she’s studying Japanese at the moment, and I learnt it for many years at school (though, alas, I fear I’ve forgotten most of what I learned!). We both love Japan – we love the people and the culture.

Maiko was out here to improve her English (which, I have to say, was pretty good to begin with!). But the time has come for her to go home; she’s gone off on a fantastic holiday around the country with her mother for a month before they both return to Japan for her sister’s wedding.

Maiko with a mango!

Maiko loves mangos! New Years Eve, 2012

Before she left, Maiko gave us a little gift. It’s called shisa, and it is symbol of protection and good fortune in Japan. One creature’s mouth is open (to keep the good spirits in) while the other’s is closed (to keep bad spirits away). Maiko’s father, a potter, made it for us. It has our names carved into the back:



It’s one of my most favourite things in the house right now. There’s nothing like a handmade gift; something that is imbued with love and care. Luke, Dexter and I are now connected to Maiko’s family. Whenever I look at it, I see something very special. :) It’s these kinds of gifts that I love the most.

I hope I get to spend more time with Maiko and her family in the future! Time to plan a trip to Japan, perhaps?

The Tierney Family | Gold Coast Portrait Photography

Well, weren’t we lucky to get THIS family portrait shoot in last weekend! I believe it was right between ‘pouring’ and ‘flood levels’. :p

Presenting – the Tierney Family!



Advice from former brides Amanda and Cassie Animals Ashleigh and Scott At-home weddings Band Photography Bayside Wedding Photography beach blackbird fly brides brides best friend brisbane botanical gardens brisbane photographer brisbane photography brisbane portrait photographer Brisbane Powerhouse brisbane wedding photographer brisbane wedding photography Brooke and Daine Brooke and Lee Bruce Loves Susie bruce loves susie wedding photography cat Clashing Colours commercial photography community Courtney and John dexter documentary photography Dominee and Barry Eco Studio Fellini eliza hall engagement Engagement photography Evergreen Restaurant Eye Spy Family family photography fashion photography fashion shoot film film photography fisheye foster care gold coast gold coast photography gold coast wedding photography gold coast weddings Greenhills on Tweed head shots holiday Japan Joanne and Michael Kimberley and Joe Kirsty and Ben la casa la casa on the hill life Lindsey and Scott lomo Louise and Kelly Modcloth mt cootha nature new years newborn photography NSW wedding photographer one frame friday patricia and neilsen personal photography polka dot bride Portrait Photography portraits Previews Rebecca and LJ RSPCA simon's cat stacey russell sunday Sunshine Coast Wedding Photographer Sydney the spit The Vintage and Handmade Bride Tierney family Vicky and Greg website Wedding fairs wedding photography wedding photography special weddings weekend world cat day yashica mat 124G