Wedding Day Photography At The Bear Hotel | Arlette & John

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There are heaps of great locations in the surrounding areas of Cardiff, including mountains and coastlines, or quaint little towns and villages. One such place is the charming market town of Cowbridge, located in the Vale of Glamorgan just a short 12 mile drive west of Cardiff city centre. This is the home of The Bear Hotel - the venue for the late-summer wedding of Arlette and John. I'd already captured the couple in an engagement shoot just a few weeks earlier during a glorious sunset at Hensol Forest, so they had already had a dress rehearsal to better understand what it was going to be like in front of the camera.

Capturing the early morning wedding preparations

Most bride and groom preparations can be quite hectic to photograph - they always have their moments, even if all seems to be sailing smoothly - but on this occasion everything really did sail pretty smoothly. I was fortunate as both bride and groom were staying at the same hotel, just at opposite ends to each other. So although I was dashing back and forth between each room every now and then, it was far easier to orchestrate.

 

Furthermore, the hotel was the venue for the wedding ceremony, reception, and evening party as well - perfect.

I arrived in good time and started photographing the groom and his best men. These were casual wedding preparation shots, some of the finer details - shoes, aftershave, cufflinks, bow tie - a few embraces between the groomsmen, and finally, a mixture of formal and non-formal shots of the groomsmen in the outside courtyard. The weather held very fine for much of the day, so we were able to quickly make use of this outdoor space during the morning.

This was all before I made my way over to the room of the bride on the other side of the hotel - bride and groom always being kept apart, of course!

Things were calm and in order when I arrived, which always makes photographing the morning of a wedding far easier in terms of technically capturing everything, though that's not to say hectic bridal preparations can't be handy as well because they can - they provide tons of moments that may not be appreciated right there and then, but will be later down the line when reflecting on the photographs in years to come.

I was able to capture the bridal party getting ready, the mother and father of the bride arriving, the dress, the finer details, and all that good stuff. The lighting is always a test in hotel rooms, but this particular room had a decent sized window so it was slightly better lit with natural light than many tend to be.

A wedding among the beautiful surroundings of South Wales

As family and friends begin to come together at the venue while waiting for the start of the wedding ceremony, there are always plentiful opportunities to capture chatter and embraces. So, after capturing a little of that inside the ceremony room, I headed back to the main entrance and awaited the arrival of the bride. The ceremony itself was truly beautiful, and it was complimented by the venue thanks to the wide panoramic windows overlooking some of the gorgeous leafy surroundings and letting the natural daylight pour inside. There were laughs and tears with everyone enjoying these precious moments as they celebrated a new chapter of Lauren and Rhys's adventure of love.

 

Fortunately, we were able to make use of the grounds as I spent some time with the couple taking some shots among the sprawling green grass and high trees. We were also gifted with an incredible sunset later in the day. The party was well underway by that point, but I could miss an opportunity as the natural light outside was incredible, so I ran inside to grab the bride for some fashion-inspired shots posed on a field with nearby sun-drenched villages in the distance. Overall, it was a beautiful wedding and I thoroughly enjoyed capturing their day.

SEE LAUREN & RHYS'S BRYN MEADOWS WEDDING PHOTOS BELOW.

Washing bag and gifts displayed on a wooden floor belonging to a groom on the morning of his wedding day
Groom buttoning up his white shirt on the morning of his wedding day
Groom putting on his watch while getting ready on the morning of his wedding day
A groom doing up his tie on the morning of his wedding day while laughing alongside his father
Groom nervously looking into a mirror while adjusting his tie on the morning of his wedding day
The feet of a bride as she wears white tribe bride slippers on the morning of her wedding during bridal preparations
Make up artist applying lip liner to a bride on the morning of her wedding day during bridal preparation
A wedding dress, bridesmaids dresses and a flower girl dress hanging on display on the front of a wardrobe
A bottle of Chloe perfume belonging to a bride displayed on a side table on the morning of her wedding day
A young girl on a bed in the bridal suite playing on a mobile phone before dressing up as the flower girl for the wedding day
A bride smiling at her mother as she adjusts her bouquet of flowers on the morning of her wedding day
A large wooden light display sign spelling the word love in the reception room of a wedding at Bryn Meadows hotel in South Wales
A wedding cake on display in the reception room of the Bryn Meadows hotel in South Wales
Close up details of a wedding cake in the reception room of the Bryn Meadows hotel in South Wales
A picture of a loving couple with various love signs and flowers in jars displayed on a white table during a wedding at Bryn Meadows hotel in South Wales
Jars of flowers surrounded by white petals displayed on the floor of a reception room on the day of a wedding at Bryn Meadows hotel in South Wales
Main entrance to the Bryn Meadows Golf & Spa Hotel in Ystrad Mynach, South Wales
Young flower girl holding the tail of a bride's wedding dress
A bride adjusting the strap on her wedding dress while looking to the right
A father proudly walking his daughter down the aisle as the groom looks back at his bride at Bryn Meadows Hotel in South Wales
A bride links arms with the groom while her parents sit in the background during their wedding ceremony at Bryn Meadows Hotel in South Wales
A groom places a wedding ring onto his brides finger during their wedding ceremony at Bryn Meadows Hotel in South Wales
A bride and groom hold hands while smiling at the marriage officiant during their wedding ceremony at Bryn Meadows Hotel in South Wales
A happy bride and groom smile as newlyweds after signing the marriage register during the wedding ceremony at Bryn Meadows Hotel near Cardiff in South Wales
A bride and groom walking down the aisle at the end of their wedding ceremony as the marriage officiant stands in the background applauding them at Bryn Meadows Hotel in South Wales
Guests throwing confetti over a newly-wed couple as they leave their wedding ceremony at Bryn Meadows Hotel near Cardiff in South Wales
A newly-wed couple hold hands while walking on a field on the outdoor grounds of Bryn Meadows Hotel near Cardiff in South Wales
A bride and groom smile while standing in front of a flower bush in the gardens of Bryn Meadows Hotel near Cardiff in South Wales
A bride and groom stand and kiss on a field underneath large trees on the ground of Bryn Meadows Hotel in South Wales
Close up of a bride holding a bouquet of flowers on her wedding day while facing the groom on the grounds of Bryn Meadows Hotel near Cardiff in South Wales
A bride and groom holding each other and smiling while stood in a green field on the grounds of Bryn Meadows Hotel in South Wales
A bride and groom hold hands and laugh while looking at each other while walking along a field on the outdoor grounds of Bryn Meadows Hotel in South Wales
Two wedding rings displayed on a stone rock
A groom smiles midway through his wedding day speech at the top table while his wife smiles in the background at Bryn Meadows Hotel in South Wales
The mother and father of a bride laughing while sat at the top table during wedding day speeches at Bryn Meadows Hotel in South Wales
The mother and father of the groom laughing and smiling while sat at the top table during wedding day speeches at Bryn Meadows Hotel near Cardiff in South Wales
A bride posing on a field during a stunning sunset on the grounds of Bryn Meadows Hotel near Cardiff in South Wales

WEDDING DAY PHOTOGRAPHY AT BRYN MEADOWS // CREDITS

Photography: Shawn Eastman Photography, Cardiff Wedding Photographer

Venue: Bryn Meadows Golf & Spa Hotel, Ystrad Mynach, South Wales

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Shawn Eastman is a Cardiff & South Wales based wedding photographer. He takes pride in documenting two lovers at the start of their biggest adventure together. Along with his couples and families, Shawn is driven to capture something authentic, beautiful, powerful and raw. These wedding day photos captured at Bryn Meadows Golf & Spa hotel in Ystrad Mynach, a short drive from Cardiff in South Wales, encapsulate exactly that.

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