Interview With: Martin Beddall
Company Name: Martin Beddall Photography
Location / Coverage: Based in West Sussex but will cover nationally and abroad.
How did Martin Beddall Photography get started and how long has the business been going? Have you always wanted to be a photographer?
Photography for me began at University shooting demos and the like for the student newspaper. I spent much supposed study time in the darkroom instead. After completing a Diploma in Photojournalism at the London College of Printing I began my career at The Times. Shooting weddings started about 12 years ago, as readers and colleagues asked me to shoot their weddings based upon my work they saw in the paper. I can’t imagine being anything but a photographer, and with my face I know which side of the lens I’m meant to be!
Who works for Martin Beddall Photography?
Just me – I prefer to work alone. I think a single photographer is more discreet and if they are good you’ve no worries about getting enough coverage.
Which areas of the UK do you cover?
Being based in West Sussex, much of my work is in the South East and London. However, as in the past, I am happy to work anywhere, here or abroad.
How do you think your service sets you apart from other wedding photographers?
Photography isn’t about having some letters after your name, it is about your eye, how you see and how you capture it forever, so I would hope it is my style and approach that sets me apart. Not being dependent upon Photoshop actions or effects, but capturing the day in an honest way that will make people smile many years from now when they look back at their album.
What are the best and hardest parts of your job?
The best thing for me is the satisfaction of having caught moments that many people missed and seeing the pleasure that gives people. The hardest – long days, hot days – a cold beer solves that though.
Does Martin Beddall Photography have a specialist area or style of photography?
Wedding photography is overloaded with jargon and terms, many of which you have to also use. So reportage/documentary/relaxed/informal/photojournalism – what it is not is contrived.
What is your view on engagement shoots?
These have become very popular recently, although not everyone wants them or has the time to do them. If they help people relax in front of the camera that’s great – if nothing else they are a chance to get to know the photographer you have booked and get some nice couple shots.
Random question… What are you most afraid of?
Baked beans – hate them!
Do you have a favourite picture you have taken (If you can choose!)?
This is one of my favourite weddings shots for two reasons. Firstly the expression – this is just after the couple’s first dance had finished, and as the guests rushed onto the dance floor I followed, and with a fast wide-angle lens got in close to catch this ‘quiet’ moment between the couple – I think the bride’s face says it all. Secondly, from a technical point of view, there is no flash. Such a shot would not have been possible before digital had matured as it has in the last two years. It did help that there was some ambient light on the dance floor and so wasn’t completely dark, as so many DJs are fond of doing.
What’s your top tip for choosing a wedding photographer?
Judge a photographer upon their vision, their manner and their experience. Look at the style of their work and imagine these being your wedding photographs – did they capture the day? If photography is important to you then don’t choose the lowest bidder, but the one who will capture the moments, the emotions and the character of your day – there is no second chance.
Where can I find out more about Martin Beddall Photography?
My website is www.martinbeddallphotography.co.uk or call me on 07973 407330.