We are extremely honoured to be celebrating a truly talented and wonderful photographer today — the amazing David Pullum. Not only is it his birthday (Happy Birthday David!) it is also the anniversary of his 15 years working in wedding photography.
Voted one of the best 50 photographers in the UK in 2018, David Pullum is one of the most visually engaging photographers we know – he has an unbelievable skill of capturing emotion and his timeless style create memories the couple, the bridal party, and their friends and family will truly treasure forever.
We come across thousands of photographers here at Smashing The Glass, but David is definitely one of our all time favourites — he is utterly outstanding.
We adore having David as part of our Smashing family and today we want to make it all about him – congratulations David, 15 years in the wedding industry is a remarkable achievement!
Before we let David tell us more about his wedding photography experience so far, we are beyond 15 year excited to let you know that to celebrate this fantastic milestone David is offering off 15% of his wedding package for all Smashing Glass readers!! HAPPY DAYS!
Now David, over to you…
Where did it all begin?
In 2003 the company I was working for decided to move most, if not all of its staff to Bangalore. Having left school with very few qualifications and have spent most of my working career in a trading room, the options were fairly limited. A good friend of mine at the time had just taken up wedding photography and so I signed up for the same course as he had done and by the end of that year I had my first wedding booking.
Back then digital photography was in its infancy and so my first wedding was shot on film and I delivered about 85 images for the couple, compared to the 500+ I deliver now.
My first Jewish wedding was in 2009, when I photographed the wedding of Tanya and James. Tanya is the daughter of Lord Robert Winston and it was at this wedding that I met her brother Ben Winston whose wedding I also photographed. Jewish weddings now make up about 70% of the weddings I photograph.
Can you describe your wedding style?
Personal and Timeless. I take images for my clients. I have some strong beliefs that a wedding photographer should take images that reflect the clients personalities as well as the personalities of family members and friends.
Wedding photographers are in the very privileged position of having access to the couple before the wedding. We also have prime position during the ceremony, and free reign on the dance floor.
It’s imperative that I take images that guests can not. Quite a few of my images are in front of the subject, in their personal space. To me that is the only way to take photographs that have meaning. When I talk to clients I liken it to a conversation. If I were to talk to my clients from the other side of the room then I would not get to know them and see their personalities, I would just be observing them. When I am at a wedding I don’t want to observe, I want to be part of it.
I also don’t dictate the day. The only time I ask people to stand a certain way is during the family formal photographs and of course I position the couple for the couple shots, but the rest of the day is completely unscripted.
If you had asked me a few years ago I would have said the dancing. After years of having my feet stood on I will now say the Badeken or the actual Chuppah itself.
I love the traditions of a Jewish wedding. From a photographers point of view some of the images that can be taken during these religious aspects of the day are amazing and very emotive.
A big difference between a Christian wedding and Jewish wedding is that the celebrant (Rabbi) will, a lot of the time, allow the photographer to take as many photographs as possible. This enables me to get closer to the couple and get the shots I want.
Will you travel to a wedding destination? Where is the most interesting place you have photographed a wedding?
Absolutely. I have photographed in quite a few countries and been very lucky that clients will fly me abroad for their weddings. This year I am photographing in Marrakech and Santorini.
I photographed a lovely Jewish wedding in the South of France last year, and in Marbella the year before.
The most interesting must be a Ski Shack in Kitzbuhel for a couple that lived in Amsterdam. It was certainly the coldest I have ever been. I have never seen guests that partied as much as they did. From memory my coverage finished around 4.00am when we all boarded skidoos and hurtled back down the mountain.
What was the funniest thing you have witnessed at a Jewish wedding?
My groom dancing on the stage with his lovely wife looking almost horrified by his moves. I’m pretty sure Adam doesn’t mind me saying its one of the funniest things I have witnessed at a wedding.
There have been the odd speech or two that have been very funny, one that comes to mind in particular. The brides father started his speech with. “Its good to see some new faces, and old faces here tonight, its also good to see some new faces on old faces.” That one liner made me laugh, I have witnessed over 500 wedding speeches and that one definitely sticks in my memory.
I also have various cake cutting shots that at the time I don’t really see them as being funny because I am concentrating so hard, and of course I also have the cake falling down image which is something I will never forget.
What makes a wedding special?
People. For me thats what a wedding is all about. Two families coming together to celebrate the joining in marriage of two people.
Whether you get married in a village hall or a 5 star hotel does not matter to me, as I am photographing the people that are at your wedding irrespective of the budget or amount of money you have spent on the day.
I started off photographing in village halls and now some of my weddings are in 5 star hotels, the photographs still show happiness and joy no matter where it is and what you spend.
How do you ensure you get all the shots you need?
Great question. A lot of detailed planning between the couple and myself is done before the wedding, so when I am at the wedding I have a very good idea of the photographs they want and the amount time I have. I have a full list of family photographs that are required and an exact timeline of events.
There is only ever two of us, more than two is overkill. My second photographer has been working with me for nearly 8 years. We are both very unobtrusive, very respectful during the ceremony and exceptionally professional in the manner in which we work.
If I put myself in a guests position, I would not want photographers obscuring my view of the bride as she walks down the aisle, or blocking the Father of the Brides welcome speech. So I make sure that both of us respect the family and guests, and go as unnoticed as possible.
Quality is always better than quantity, and that is as applicable to the number of photographers as it is the number of photographs provided.
WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?
Thank you David – we couldn’t love you and your work any more! To claim your 15% discount or to even just to have an initial chat with David, call him on 01392 498230 or visit www.dpphotography.co.uk and / or @davidpullumphotography.