Hello to Project Valentine who sent us these beaut engagement images of this cool and quirky couple Clarrisa and Richard. So we asked Jack to let us know more about this awesome shoot and offer his advice when it comes to shooting before the big day. We love to hear different photographer opinions as all are different in style. See what you think….

About Clarrisa and Richard

How we met:

Richard and I met at high school in Rochdale when I moved to a new school in Year 10. We had mutual friends and would hang out, we started dating at the start of the GCSE exams (May 2004), we were each other’s first kiss! 

We managed a long distance relationship during university years when I went to Central Lancashire University and he was accepted at Sheffield University.  After a few years, I moved to London for work and Richard followed a year later. 

How we got engaged?

We have always known that we will get married eventually, we didn’t want to put too much pressure on each other to have the “perfect proposal”, so on the 5th of  December 2015 we agreed to both go to Hatton Garden in London to see if there was a ring that we fancied.

I know that I wanted a trilogy ring and had done some research beforehand. We found a ring that I saw online at Bernstones shop and the ring happened to be in my size so we were able to take it home with us. Yay!

There was a storm brewing in London- it was so windy that day so we had to go home back to our flat in Finchley, we sat down on our couch and Richard turned to me and popped the question! Even though it was expected, it was still very emotional, we were both shaking and giggling to each other. When we rang our respective families and close friends about our engagement, and they all said the same thing: “finally!” We got engaged after 12 years together!

Where and why you picked the wedding venue?

Our wedding date is in May 2017, the month of May is quite important for us, it’s the same month of our anniversary and it’s also Richard’s birthday month. We also love the idea of a mid-spring wedding.

We are having our wedding ceremony at Richard’s local church where a lot of his family got married and where he was christened as a baby. 

As for the wedding reception, we picked the Wellbeing Farm in Edgworth, Bolton. We wanted something that’s rustic, in the countryside, and had lots of green spaces. When we met with the owner of the Wellbeing Farm, Celia Gaze, and showed us around the farm, we were immediately smitten with the venue. You can tell how passionate the owner was of the farm, the barn where the reception will be held and of the animals on the farm- they have llamas and donkeys! 

We also found that the venue already has lots of props and decorations that we can use for our wedding so that meant saving money on things like fairy/festoon lights hire, glass jars and vases and an amazing cake and sweets cart! 

What you got out of the photoshoot?

Richard and I aren’t the most photogenic of couples as we find having pictures done quite awkward. Being given a chance to get used to being photographed together before the wedding has been helpful for both of us. It helps take some of the anxiety away on the big day, and it also gave us a chance to spend the time to get to know Jack our photographer and for him to get to know us. 

Richard and I couldn’t stop laughing and giggling during the shoot, but it made us more confident to be more natural as the shoot progressed. 

Project Valentines Advice

Why should I have a couples shoot?

A couples shoot, pre-wedding or engagement shoot (call it what you want) is perfect for some couples but not for all.  I usually find that the couples that opt to have a couples shoot are a little nervous about having their pictures taken on their big day, so it’s a great way to shake those nerves and to spend a little time in front of the camera to get a feel for what it’s like.  Others want to use the images for their invites or even to have an image framed for the wedding day to have everyone sign around it like a guestbook.

From a photographers point of view, it’s great to spend more time with couples to learn more about them before their big day and to build a strong rapport.  It can make a huge difference on the day having spent that little extra time together before the wedding so it doesn’t feel like a stranger is arriving, the reason I always meet couples at the time of booking and again just before the wedding!

What should I wear to my couples shoot?

It always looks great when couples wear their Sunday best.  Dressing smart not only makes the couple feel more confident but it also looks much better in the photos.  I’d always advise speaking to your photographer to see where you are having the shoot and then avoid clashing colours with the background.  If you’re planning on having a woodland shoot then avoid wearing too much green or brown as you could blend in the setting!  

Why shooting in Manchester offers so much.

Manchester as a city offers so many backdrops that you’re spoilt for choice.  Yes, it’s a busy area, but once you see past the chaos you can find some awesome backgrounds to work with.  From the amazing graffiti in the Northern Quarter to the elegance of the town hall and Albert Square there really is a setting for any type of shoot.  If you explore enough you’ll even find some greenery!! 

Find Project Valentine on Facebook and at  www.projectvalentine.co.uk