Photographing a Marriage ProposalFriday May 01, 2015
Stephen proposes to Bree at Doctor Who Experience
There are some projects which are truly special and being asked to photograph Stephen proposing to Bree at Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff Bay was one of those.
It had all begun with an email from Stephen saying that he had spoken with Richard at Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff and that they had agreed to allow Stephen to propose to Bree in their Cardiff Bay location. I responded and proposed that we set up a Skype call and it was only then that I realised that Stephen was emailing me from Liberty Township in Ohio, USA.
Our anticipated 10 minute introduction via Skype lasted nearly an hour. The wedding proposal was discussed and sorted in 10 minutes, but then we got onto the subject of Doctor Who. Stephen and I are both huge fans, as is Bree, and our lengthy discussions continued on later Skype calls. From the first moment I saw and talked to Stephen it felt as though I had known him for years even though he was on another side of the World. I wonder whether we have both time-travelled and met in a past life.
The whole proposal was being arranged as a surprise with Bree being told that there were going for a vacation in Florida, when in fact they were flying to the UK. On the Saturday, the plan was for them both to travel across from London to Cardiff, visit the Doctor Who Experience, take a tour and then go return to the Experience for the proposal. I have been fortunate to work with the Doctor Who Experience team previously and we had decided on the best place for the propose to take place and where we could get the best photographs.
On the day, all went to plan. The proposal was to take place on the Tenth Doctor's (David Tennant) TARDIS downstairs in the main exhibition. I decided to limit my use of flash as I wanted this to look like the Doctor was actually proposing to a companion and that meant using the lighting from the exhibition and the TARDIS. My ISO was a little higher, but I felt that the whole composition would be enhanced.
I positioned myself behind some TARDIS doors and waited. It was a strange twn minutes or so hiding away on Doctor Who's TARDIS. Finally, Stephen and Bree were escorted in and up to where we wanted to take the photographs. Stpehen was dressed as the Eleventh Doctor (Matt Smith) and Bree was dressed as her favourite companion, Clara (Jenna Coleman). They both look fabulous! I waited until they were facing each other and then quietly stepped out of the TARDIS doors and started clicking away.
Being present, as Stephen proposed to Bree, was a real privilige and I just hope, that in years to come, the photographs remind them of that wonderfully tender moment. After the proposal, we spent some time taking some fun photos around the exhibition and even got one with the scarf of the Fourth Doctor (Tom Baker and Stephen's childhood Doctor) strategically placed in the background. Bree's ring was stunning and very in keeping with the whole Doctor Who theme.
After the shoot, I offered them a lift back to Cardiff train station and made sure that music from the Doctor Who series was playing in the car. It just finished off a wonderful day. A selection of the photographs can be seen on my website.
They say that sometimes you just connect with people and I feel that way about Stephen and Bree. We talked as if we had known each other for many years and I really hope that we all keep in touch. Thank you to Richard and Vicky at Doctor Who Experience for allowing this to go ahead and thank you Stephen and Bree for asking me to be part of something truly special. I will always remember this as one of my most special photoshoots ever!
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