MMC Photography: Blog en-us (C) MMC Photography (MMC Photography) Mon, 16 Mar 2020 07:25:00 GMT Mon, 16 Mar 2020 07:25:00 GMT Making the most of social media on your wedding day            

Making the Most of Social Media on Your Wedding Day

Social media has become such a huge part of the wedding experience. It seems as though almost every aspect of our daily lives now revolves around consuming and sharing online. 

There are mixed opinions on whether social media should be embraced, or shunned on a wedding day. Some couples opt to enforce their guests to completely avoid it for the day or maybe request that photos are not posted or shared until after a certain time. This helps keep the wedding intimate in case couples have any fears about their guests being disengaged on the day.

This can be difficult though and your guests may feel uncomfortable being told that they aren’t allowed to use their phones throughout the day, especially if they are naturally ones to want to share amazing moments on social media! There are so many benefits to allowing and including the use of social media on your big day and it can really add another element of involvement from your guests.

Will you be embracing social media on your wedding day? Here are some ways in which you can encourage your guests to snap and share in the right way.


There are a couple of social media guidelines that every wedding should follow, and really it comes down to common sense!

The big one is that guests should wait until after the ceremony to post any pictures of the bride. This special moment shouldn’t be ruined and can perhaps spoil the ‘reveal’ of the bride in her dress on the day. Lots of couples place a wooden sign or chalkboard outside their ceremony to politely ask guests not to share.

Live Streaming

Both Facebook Live and Instagram Live are a great way of including guests who couldn’t make the trip to be with you on your day.

Whether you live stream the ceremony or do incremental live clips of the speeches and the party on the night, it’s an awesome and instant way to reach out to friends and family who aren’t present. Try and think of an original hashtag so guests can quickly find your pics!


If you’re not adverse to people snapping selfies on the day, a good idea is to provide selfie sticks or something similar as wedding favours. It subtly encourages your guests to get involved with photos without explicitly having to ask them. Giving your guests the freedom to capture the day means that you will have these great candid shots and moments on record that you may have missed initially. 


Hashtagging your wedding is a good idea and it is one of the best ways of collating all of your guests’ photos in one place somewhere like Instagram. Of course if you encourage your guests to post here then your wedding photos will be public for the world to see! Also, you will have much less control over what people see as you can’t dictate what does and doesn’t get posted.

If you’d like to browse your guests’ photos without the general public having access then there are some great apps that allow you to see all the images that your guests have taken.

]]> (MMC Photography) informal wedding photos wedding first dance wedding photographers hillsborough wedding photographers lisburn wedding photography belfast wedding photography northern ireland wedding photos Wed, 17 Jan 2018 09:00:00 GMT
How to be the best wedding guest                                            


10 Ways to Be the Best Wedding Guest Ever

Want to be a stellar wedding guest? Of course, you do! We've got you covered with these 10 tips.

1. RSVP ASAP. The rest of the couple's planning, from ordering linens to ceremony seating, depends on the guest head count. 

2. Send a gift. Most couples create a wedding registry, so all you have to do is choose something from their curated wish list—so half the work is already done for you!

3. Be on time. Only the to-be-weds are allowed to make a show stopping entrance at this event. Get to the ceremony location early and grab a seat.

4. Avoid wearing white. You may look absolutely fabulous, but it's the bride's special moment—not yours.

5. Keep negative comments to yourself. Even if you thought the vows were cheesy or the dress wasn't your style, there's no need to rain on anyone's parade.

6. Don't hog the bride and groom. Offer your congratulations and visit for a few minutes, but then give them a chance to speak with other guests.

7. Monitor your cocktails. With champagne around every corner and an open bar by the dance floor, it's hard to resist a celebratory cocktail (or four).

8. Make sure to mingle. Even if you're shy, or just picky about your company, try not to hide or flock only to the other guests you already know.

9. Be cool with your camera. The couple hired their photographer for a reason, so don't let your selfie ops get in the way.

10. Bad mood? Leave it at home. No matter what happens, keep smiling!

]]> (MMC Photography) informal wedding photos wedding first dance wedding photographers hillsborough wedding photographers lisburn wedding photography belfast wedding photography northern ireland wedding photos Wed, 10 Jan 2018 20:24:36 GMT
Wedding Fairs

How to get the most from attending a wedding fair

As wedding fair season begins, I thought I would share my top ten tips for visiting a wedding fair and getting the most out of it.

My top tips for visiting Wedding Fairs:

  • Look around for fairs that suit your style, in venues and locations that you are interested in.
  • Take your time, don’t rush. Remember that the suppliers have paid to attend and are keen to talk to you and find out what you want.
  • It’s easy to get overwhelmed. Sometimes taking a break is a good idea, go for a walk and come back after you have thought of what information you need.
  • Take business cards of suppliers you like the look of so that you can contact them. Find their Facebook Pages and link up with them on Twitter and Pinterest.
  • Ask if the supplier is offering a discount for bookings made that day. This can often give you a chance to save some money as the supplier will be keen to get the business.
  • Take people along who want to be there. If your partner isn’t up for it, don’t drag them along; it will just annoy you, and them! Equally, if your partner does want to get involved don’t whatever you do leave them out of it.
  • Take cash - you never know what you might find and this means you can book suppliers and pay deposits on the day.
  • Don’t feel pressured, but don’t miss out! Make sure you are getting what you want and need. Price is an important factor but it should not be the only thing that you are considering when you are booking someone.
  • Remember… You only get married once, hopefully! so enjoy this and try not to get stressed.

I will be exhibiting a few wedding fairs over the next few months such as at the Crowne Plaza, Belfast; La Mon Hotel and Loughshore Hotel in Carrick.

]]> (MMC Photography) wedding fairs wedding photography belfast wedding photography carryduff wedding photography northern ireland wedding photography planning wedding photos Tue, 07 Mar 2017 20:01:20 GMT
Making the Most of Your Guest’s Photos   

Making the Most of Your Guest’s Photos

Although you’ve hired your photographer (for any sensible bride that will be me) for your wedding, guest’s photos are being increasingly overlooked. Back in the day it was not uncommon for each table at the wedding reception to be adorned with film cameras for guests to snap away throughout the evening – but today these are often costly and laborious to print and then create into photo albums.

So instead we’ve resorted to guest photos being stored on social media, relentlessly tagging our family and friends in an effort for our memories to be cherished and kept safe; but how safe are they really on these platforms? We have no idea how long these digital platforms will be around for, and what happens to all those photos if they suddenly disappeared?

Not only is the safety of our photos at risk but also the quality and charm. In years to come when your children and grandchildren ask you about your life will you want to hand them an iPad to swipe through photos, or would you rather give them printed photos to flick through? There’s something so beautiful about actually holding a photograph, feeling the thick paper between your fingers as you look through memories and years of happiness. A snapshot in time, held captive forever within a tangible object that can be felt and loved.

Having your guest’s photos printed is the only way to make the most of them, so here are a few ideas that are sure to inspire you on your big day!

1. Create a hashtag
Collect all of your guest’s photos on social media by getting them to use a specific hashtag – something like #MrandMrsSmith – this way you will be able to find all of their images from the day without having to rifle through their social media profiles. Saving you time collating them before getting them printed. An added bonus will be the addition of those Instagram filters making your photos look better!

2. Guest-made scrapbook
Buy some Polaroid cameras and get your guests to stick their photos directly into a scrapbook, complete with a pot of Sharpies and stickers so that they can personalise them with a message much like a conventional guest book. No need for you to waste time printing and sticking them yourself!

3. Go old school
Adorn your wedding tables with disposable cameras, it will encourage guests to get trigger happy throughout the day and capture more of those unique moments. Just be cautious that as the night gets darker and the drinks start flowing that a finger over the lens or a faulty flash are all too common!

4. Photo books
Use a photo book app such as My SnappBook to encourage guests to create readymade photo books straight from their phones. Pre buy a number of them and give your guests a unique discount code – have them delivered direct to your address so they’re waiting for you once you’re back from your honeymoon!

]]> (MMC Photography) informal wedding photos wedding photographers lisburn wedding photography belfast wedding photography northern ireland wedding photos Thu, 15 Dec 2016 06:28:22 GMT
Wedding speech - Father of the bride    

Traditionally, at the reception, the bride’s father is the first to make a speech to the wedding guests. At lots of weddings that I do the father of the bride is usually very nervous and all he can think about is saying a few words and then sitting down as quickly as possible.

Hopefully with a few of my tips below this will help to make it a more enjoyable experience.

What to include in your speech

Whether you intend to make it short and sweet, or to really reap the benefits of the spotlight, your speech will need to contain some basic elements if it is to be in keeping with tradition. These are…

The intro
You need to introduce yourself, but it doesn’t have to be reminiscent of an AA meeting. Tell them your name and maybe crack a small joke to make yourself feel relaxed.

The welcome
Make a formal welcome to everyone, and thank them for coming. Try to mention, in particular, the bride’s mother and the groom’s parents too.

Your daughter
She’s made you pay for it, and now’s your chance to get a little of your own back on her! Recall a funny anecdote from her youth, or simply tell her how proud you are of the woman she’s become.

Your son-in-law
Formally welcome the groom to your family, in any way you feel appropriate. You can mention how you felt about him when you first met him, or a moment when you’ve been particularly glad he’s around.

Parting wisdom
As the elder speaker at the wedding, you should impart some of your wisdom to the happy couple about maintaining a healthy marriage or living a happy life. This is also a good place to throw in some jokes about wives, weddings or life in general, just as long as it doesn’t upset your wife!

The toast
Finish up by asking everyone to stand and raise a glass to the happy couple. No doubt, the best man will do something similar at the end of his speech too, but it’s the traditional way to close yours.

Timing is everything
Don’t go on telling old stories that few people in the audience will know about. Keep things fun, engaging and aim for a speech that lasts around six to seven minutes in total. Read your speech through at your normal speaking pace to gauge how long this really is.

Keep it clean
Jokes are a great way to break the ice and loosen up the crowd, but don’t be too focused on being funny. You’re the elder statesman of the speakers today, so you can afford to be a bit more conservative with your words. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a few jibes at the expense of the wedding or your daughter’s love of spending money, just don’t go too close to the bone. Leave it to the best man to have a go at the groom, and focus on welcoming your new son-in-law to the family and toasting the happy couple.

Hold on to your emotions
This is such a big occasion for you and all your family, it can be easy to get caught up in the emotion of it all. Do your best to keep things light and happy. If there are some personal things you would like to say to your daughter, but don’t want to include in your speech, write them down for her to read on the day instead.

The last word
Ask any public speaker what their biggest fear is, and they’ll pretty much always say it’s forgetting where they are in their speech. Fumbling over your words and getting a bit lost is nothing to be ashamed of, provided you can make a quick recovery and get back on track okay. Take your speech on cue cards with bullet-pointed reminders of what you want to talk about, rather than printing it all out in full. This will give you a more natural delivery, and will save you having to read through several paragraphs to find your place after getting lost.

If you do get stuck, use a moment to clear your throat, take a drink of water or give your daughter a kiss. These moments might seem a lifetime to you, but will feel like a natural pause to your audience, and will give you the breathing space you need to get things back on track. Take your time, don’t panic and try to enjoy your moment of fame.

]]> (MMC Photography) informal wedding photos wedding father of the bride speech wedding first dance wedding photographers hillsborough wedding photographers lisburn wedding photography belfast wedding photography northern ireland wedding photos Tue, 18 Oct 2016 19:45:50 GMT
Wedding Planning Tips


Tips for planning your wedding day
So you have recently got engaged… Now the fun starts with planning your wedding!
These are my top 5 suggestions you should cross of your list first.

1. Set a date
Whether you want a winter wedding or decide to have a summer day of celebration, plan accordingly for the chosen season! For summer weddings you’ll need a plan to cope with bad weather (you all know what the weather is like here!). A winter wedding is guaranteed to be cold, and possibly wet. Discuss with your venue potential areas to take indoor photos – although I have plenty of ideas for photos if we are stuck inside so no need to worry.  And don’t forget to remind your guests to dress accordingly. So whatever the weather, you’ve got it all planned.

2. Set your budget
Every wedding has a budget so it is important to set this out from the start. Your budget will usually guide you as to how many guests to invite and if you both have big families, this may be high on your priority list. Once you have a budget, you can keep track of your spending. Be willing to be flexible in order to meet your wedding budget. If your perfect venue isn’t available when you want it, try a midweek wedding instead – it is often cheaper than Saturday weddings. But do consider that a mid-week wedding means guests will have to take a day or two off work which isn’t always convenient and may mean some guests won’t be able to attend. Check out my prices that I’m sure will suit whatever budget you have in mind –

3. To do List
Visit the wedding fairs to help tick certain things off your list and to get extra inspiration for your wedding day. In planning a wedding, you will find there are a million things that need to be arranged. Save the date, invitations, venue, flowers, cake, stationery, music, ceremony, dress, bridesmaid dress, favours, photography…the list is endless! Which is why you will need to keep a track of what to do and when to do it and an excel spreadsheet with a plan of action is the perfect way! It’s also a good method of keeping track of your budget; the more detailed the better. Trust me, this kind of organisation will save a huge amount of hassle further down the line and keep your wedding plans in check! People usually book me around 12-18 months in advance but depending on the time of year I could have availability. Feel free to get in touch to check out my availability –

4. Delegate
Behind every beautiful bride are her fabulous and super supportive maid of honour and bridesmaids! Don’t take on too much and delegate what you can to friends and family who have skills in areas you need support with. Do you need help setting up your wedding venue the night before? Or perhaps decorating the church with flowers? Write a list of tasks for people to help you do to make your life easier. As long as you give them plenty of notice, you can put your trust in other people. Nobody will know if the table arrangements are not exactly what you had in mind, but everyone will notice a stressed out bride!

5. Contracts and negotiations
Lastly, when dealing with wedding suppliers try to negotiate the best deal, but don’t sell yourself short on important things just to get a better price. If something is unusually cheaper than other quotes you have gathered then there is usually a reason why – avoid at all costs! My photography packages include no hidden extras and all my packages include full day coverage from bridal preparations until the dancing and everything in between as well as free canvas print, DVD slideshow and all images taken on the day edited and provided full resolution.

Hopefully these tips will help you get organised and feel less stressed about the whole planning process. It’s easier said than done but try not to worry about the small stuff and enjoy every moment. The day will whizz past so fast, so be present in the moment and enjoy your special day!

]]> (MMC Photography) wedding photographers lisburn wedding photography belfast wedding photography carryduff wedding photography northern ireland wedding photography planning wedding photos wedding planning Wed, 20 Apr 2016 19:59:02 GMT
Wedding Invitation Etiquette
Wedding Invitation Etiquette
It is always tricky to know the etiquette when doing wedding invitations. When do you send the invitations? Who do you invite? What information do you include? Do you allow kids? Are just some of the questions you need to consider.

Through talking to many people in the wedding industry over the years I have selected some ideas to help you. Remember it is your day so do what pleases you both and you won’t go too far wrong.

Should We Send Save-The-Dates? And When?

First up, save-the-dates are totally optional. It’s handy to provide significant advance notice to guests. In fact, giving notice six months or more in advance is great, and a year in advance for destination weddings is even better. But the notice you give can come in a number of forms. You can send a save-the-date email, or make save-the-date phone calls. Or, of course, you can send out cute note cards or magnets or whatever creative trinket you desire. But only spend money on save-the-dates if you really want to.

When Do We Send Wedding Invites?

The standard rule, which dates from back when weddings were mostly local affairs, is that wedding invitations should be sent out six to eight weeks in advance of the wedding. But the real truth is lots of folk won’t make travel arrangements until they get the invite. So if a lot of people are going to have to travel for your wedding, sending the invitations out three months in advance will be a greatly appreciated. And trust me, nobody will forget about the wedding because you sent them a little early.

How Do We Address Wedding Invites?

There is a myth floating around out there that if you’re having a formal wedding, and sending formal invitations, that you have to use traditional honorifics… even if they’re not the honorifics the person you are inviting uses on a daily basis.

So here is the hard and fast rule: you should address people by the names they actually use. But the short version is you can use honorifics or skip them. If you’re using them, children under twelve can be addressed by Miss or Master. Women can be addressed as Mrs, Miss or Ms and Doctors as Dr.

What Information Should We Include On Our Invitation?

While it can be fun to get visually creative with your wedding invitations, you don’t want to miscommunicate or confuse the information, because well, you want people to come! The real key is just to remember to communicate legibly who, what, where, and when.

What Should We Make The RSVP Deadline?

Remember that it is likely that people will pop their RSVP card in the mail only on the deadline you give them. So in short, I would suggest making the RSVP date at least a week earlier than the deadline for your caterer, since you may spend that week chasing replies and confirmation. Setting an RSVP deadline of three to four weeks from your wedding date will help keep you sane!

Do We Have To Allow Single Friends Plus Ones?

In short, no. However your single friend might want a plus one.
If you only have a few single friends, giving them a chance to bring a date or friend, may increase the odds of them attending. If you decide not to offer plus ones, ensure that you take good care of the single folk. Seat them together, introduce them at any welcome parties you might have. Tell each of them who they should look out for - and pray for hook-ups that end in storybook romances…..

If you have lots of single friends just consider how offering a plus one will add to your guest list and the cost!

We’re having a Wedding with No Kids, How Do We Make That Clear?

This is a tough one that will often cause an argument. The traditional way of letting people know exactly who is invited to the wedding is simply by listing the names of the invitees on the envelope. No children? Don’t list them.

However, in reality, this signal can sometimes get lost in all the noise. Flights can be booked before official invites arrive. New parents are not used to seeing their children’s names on envelopes in the first place. Envelopes go straight in the bin. So you’ll need to be a little clearer, while keeping it kind. Word this nicely, and stay away from things that read along the lines of “NO KIDS PLEASE.” You can also call loved ones with kids to talk about it in person.

]]> (MMC Photography) informal wedding photos wedding first dance wedding invitiations wedding photographers hillsborough wedding photography belfast wedding photography northern ireland wedding photos Tue, 23 Feb 2016 21:47:07 GMT
Wedding albums - Why have one?

What could be better than flicking through your wedding photos in a beautiful album that will last for years to come?

Have you ever looked at your parents’ wedding photos? Remember the emotions you felt seeing them? Memories that can be shared and passed on through generations. Thinking back through the years, how wonderful is it to sit and look at the memories of that special kiss, the hair styles and outfits that are massively of the era and of relatives when they were small children in cute outfits? When you’re planning your wedding, you’re sure you’ll never forget any detail and whilst you will always remember the heightened emotions of the day, the photographs are the only tangible evidence to treasure of one of the happiest and most fun days of your life. 
In the months following your wedding, your loved ones will want to see photographs from the big day. An online slideshow is all well and good, but having a gorgeous leather or hardcover bound book to flip through is much more of an occasion. It reflects the full story of your special day, carefully designed with your favourite pictures and memories.
I choose to use two amazing companies, Tony Sarlo and Loxley Colour and I really love these albums! It has taken me a few years to finally find albums I would proudly own myself and I have found them in these products. Each company offers beautiful, contemporary albums that are expertly manufactured and of the highest quality.
I love it when the bride and groom receive their photos and later contact me to say it is going to be incredibly difficult to narrow them down and select their favourites for the album. Selecting the photos for your album can seem like the most daunting task in the world. What do you pick for the album? Where do you start with your wedding photography? Which ones to put in and which ones to leave out? Your wedding album should reflect the day and tell the story of your day from start to finish. You want have a mix of the natural, candid images, the portraits, the details and the group shots. It’s also important to make sure the album looks right and flows well; part of this is the balance of image types. Too many or too few of each type of image and the album just won’t work.
This is where the album design becomes a team effort. I like to work with you to make sure the album that is designed and created is just perfect. The photos should cover all aspects of the day, from the getting ready bits, the ceremony, the reception, speeches and guest photos and finally a few from the first dance and evening celebration.
It’s so important when choosing images that you select the ones you really love. Don’t feel obliged to add in particular people or lots of groups if you don’t want them. This is your album and it has to be something you want to look at for the rest of your life. So, take time out from your day, just the two of you, get a cup of tea (or a glass of wine) and sit down and look through the photos.
What happens next? Once you have given me your chosen images I get to work designing the layouts that will tell your wedding day story. I then email you the layout of the album and you can let me know if you would like any changes, After all, it’s your album and I want you to be completely happy before printing and binding.
Getting a proper wedding album isn’t for everyone. If you like the idea of having something printed but fancy doing your own book there are some great options. There are lots of websites that offer templates that you can use to drag images and create your own book. Just make sure the images you use are print resolution. It’s important to check this as it has massive implications on the final quality of the printed book. I provide you with all of your images full resolution so you will not need to worry about this.
I hope this has given you a bit more of an idea about wedding albums and whether you might want one. There is no rush or time limit on getting an album. Whether it’s six months or two years after the wedding I’m happy to help you create the most wonderful everlasting investment.


]]> (MMC Photography) informal wedding photos wedding photographers lisburn wedding photography albums wedding photography belfast wedding photography northern ireland wedding photos Tue, 09 Feb 2016 21:52:51 GMT
The First Dance

One of the most important wedding songs of the day, your first dance song will be one that you remember for years to come; feelings will be forever evoked among you and your guests upon hearing your first dance wedding song choice. Selecting a great first dance wedding song is important, but should not become a stressful matter, nor should it come between a bride and groom. Like your wedding day, your first dance and is, after all, all about you. In order to avoid disagreement over your first dance song choice, why not write individual lists of possibilities, cross referencing to see what you both love? If you can’t agree on one specific first dance wedding song, then select a couple for your first dance or pick different genres from which to choose a few first dance songs.

I have photographed many weddings and I always enjoy being there for the first dance. I usually have a bit of craic with the groom as, apart from his speech, it is probably his least favourite part of the day!

When the first dance is announced and the bride and groom are called to the floor I always have to jostle for position as all the guests are usually standing around the dance floor with their phones and cameras.

The songs always surprise me as some are real classics and have been around for years and others have only just come out. But the main thing is that each song means something to each bride and groom. 

Here is a list of the most popular songs over the past few years. See if your song is on the list –

John Legend, All of Me -
Etta James, At Last -

Savage Garden, Truly, Madly, Deeply -
Al Green, Let’s Stay Together -
Christina Perri, A Thousand Years -
Elbow, On a Day Like This -
Leona Lewis, Run -
Kodaline, The One -
Bruno Mars, Just the way You Are -
Jason Mraz, I Won’t Give Up -

]]> (MMC Photography) wedding first dance wedding photographers hillsborough wedding photographers moira wedding photography belfast wedding photography northern ireland wedding photography songs Sun, 31 Jan 2016 13:30:31 GMT