The emotional father of the bride at Rachel and Chris' Yorkshire wedding

Some photographs appeal to your head and some photographs get you in the gut. This is a gut photograph.

I took this photograph of the emotional father of the groom at Rachel and Chris' wonderful wedding at Judges at Kirklevington, in Yarm, North Yorkshire.

Rachel had just finished getting ready and the two of them shared a few quiet moments of conversation just before the wedding ceremony. There were just the three of us in the room and while I knew it was a private moment I also knew that I had to preserve this event for the future by capturing it in a photograph. I took some discreet photographs of them as they chatted while sitting at the foot of the bed, then I retreated to give them space.

I was still ready with my camera and was on the look out for interesting compositions now that I had the 'safe' shots in the bag. While standing behind the pair I noticed a mirror on the opposite wall that reflected their faces. The angle wasn't quite right to catch them as they were seated but as soon as one of them rose, I knew I'd have a second to get a shot.

Rachel rose and turned away from her dad, and he stood and gave her this proud look.

I carry two camera bodies on the wedding day, one with a wide lens and one with a long lens. I used my long lens as I was well away from the couple and I shot it wide open, in part so that I could use as low an ISO as possible and also so that the busy surroundings would be thrown out of focus.

The wallpaper and mirror frame were very brightly coloured and detracted from the focus of the photograph so I converted it to black and white. I often do this with photographs that pack an emotional punch so that it doesn't dilute the feeling. Black and white suits older men who have some character and texture to their faces too.

When I look back at this photograph I am reminded that I often get my best photographs when I slow down and quietly observe what is going on, and then take the photograph at the decisive moment. My mirrorless Fujifilms help enormously with this as they are small and virtually silent, allowing me to fade into the background.

The emotional father of the bride at Rachel and Chris' Yorkshire wedding

  • Camera: Fujifilm X-T1
  • Lens: Fujifilm 56mm f1.2
  • Focal Length: 56mm
  • Aperture: f1.2
  • Iso: 400
  • Exposure: 1/125