Graduation Balls

Graduation Balls

It’s been fun meeting the future over the past couple of weeks. We are slap bang in the middle of graduation season and I’ve had the good fortune to photograph a few of tomorrow’s financiers, legal eagles and business leaders at a number of graduation balls. All photos are online and downloadable so drop me an email to gerry@gmwphoto.co.uk, tell me which event you attended and I will send you the link.

Graduation Ball
Graduation Ball
Graduation Ball

Fiona and Chris – Rankin Church and The Strathaven Hotel

Fiona and Chris – Rankin Church and The Strathaven Hotel

Mari said I write too much on my blog entries. “People just want to see the photos and not read your ramblings” she says every time I post a new entry. My stock answer is “Ok I’ll cut back next time – I promise” and then I start typing! Maybe she has a point. I appear to have turned my rambling into a habit and maybe I should let the pictures do the talking! Maybe next time!

Ladies and Gentlemen I have great pleasure in introducing you to…….Fiona and Chris who were married in a beautiful ceremony at the Rankin Church in Strathaven before hosting a reception at the nearby Strathaven Hotel.  The Rev Shaw Paterson conducted the service and he reminded the bride and groom and his congregation of the expectation that true love should grow even stronger over time. I think everyone was struggling to think how these two could ever be more in love!

You all know by now that the Strathaven Hotel means a lot to me. I got married here myself many moons ago and I always love to return. Sheila and Malcolm run the hotel so superbly and everything runs like clockwork! According to Fiona’s dad, Fiona and clockwork are two words not normally associated with each other but on her wedding day everything went to plan and we had the perfect day. Fiona’s dad John also brought a unique style to the traditional father of the bride role and entertained his guests with a very lovely slide presentation of Fiona’s life to date. Well done John! Fiona’s family, and especially her mum Linda, are artistic gems –  together they created the bridesmaids dresses, floral displays, orders of service, favours, place names and all of the wedding finery! It was a job very well done!

Chris and Fiona were introduced to each other by best man Freddie. They met when both were at university in Aberdeen and they share a passion for the great outdoors. They climb Scotland’s munros and  mountains and spend their spare time walking across our great countryside. The cake holds a clue to their passion for climbing! I met them for a pre-wedding shoot a few months back and the rain poured down for the entire session. Despite the wet weather we managed to get some great photos – I assume something they learned to cope with at the summit of Scotland’s hills! They thoroughly deserved the beautiful weather we subsequently got for the wedding!

Chris and Fiona are off to Poland on honeymoon, no doubt scaling great heights again! You had a perfect wedding and I was delighted to play my small part!  Here are a few reminders of a perfect day as you reached the base station on your journey so far. Keep going onwards and upwards towards the summit where the Rev Paterson says you will find even greater depths to the love you have for each other……

Fiona and Chris

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Carol and George – The Carnbooth House Hotel

Carol and George – The Carnbooth House Hotel

It seems the sun always shines on the Carnbooth House Hotel ! The last time I was here it was a glorious day and it was no different for Carol and George. Every wedding should be like this! The bluebells were out in force in the Carnbooth gardens and Carol’s colour choice was just the perfect match for the surroundings. Everything was beautifully co-ordinated for one of the most intimate weddings I have had the pleasure to attend. Carol and George were married in the drawing room in front of a very small family group. I got to chat with all of them over the course of the afternoon and what a lovely time they had.

Carol and George have known each other for many years. They worked together and were employed in the same team but romance blossomed a couple of years ago when Carol moved to another team in another office and George realised he couldn’t be without her. Zoë Lyons conducted a very personal and moving ceremony which included a few lovely stories about the happy couple. They each expressed the many things they love about each other and I found out that George is even prepared to use the Debenhams EK car park just because it suits Carol’s shopping habits – true love indeed!

Carol and George had an absolutely brilliant wedding day. The sun shone, and the springtime colours and blossoms made it all the more spectacular and it was such a pleasure to be asked to play a part in their special day. Grateful thanks go to John and the team at the Carnbooth for their kindness and hospitality. A special mention to all of the guests but in particular to Tom, Fiona and Iain, thanks for your help and your patience. To Carol and George I wish you all the luck in the world and every good wish for a long and happy marriage. Here are a few reminders of a truly perfect day……

Carol and George Continue reading

Karon and Peter – The Loch Lomond Arms Hotel, Luss

Karon and Peter – The Loch Lomond Arms Hotel, Luss

I was back again on the bonnie, bonnie banks of Loch Lomond on a beautiful spring day for the spectacular wedding of an old friend and neighbour Peter to Karon. This time I returned to the Loch Lomond Arms, a wonderfully tasteful boutique hotel set atop the main street in the village of Luss. It was sensational! A beautiful ceremony in the hotel marquee was followed by a day of celebration and laughter in the gardens of the hotel.  After the ceremony we walked down to Luss Pier to catch a few photos with Ben Lomond as the backdrop – you won’t find many better or more photogenic locations in Scotland. The village attracts tourists from all over the globe and on a day like Karon and Peter’s wedding day, when the sun shone brightly, the tourists were out in force to wish the happy couple lots of good wishes. Karon and Peter were beaming as they walked through the town and everyone stopped to offer their congratulations.

The guest list also looked like a global gathering with family and friends travelling from far flung places like South Africa and Dubai for the celebrations. And boy did they celebrate! When the first dance from the magnificent Nightfly kicked in we got a taste of the out and out party that was to follow – a brilliant rendition of Pharrell’s “Happy” brought the whole bridal party bouncing on to the dance floor and it never stopped!

Karon was a picture of happiness all day and she loved every minute of it. She looked fabulous and glamorous in her dress from the wonderful team at Ederra Bridal Studio in Blantyre.

The Loch Lomond Arms was the subject of a recent multi million pound refurbishment and it looks good in its new clothes. I was here just after it opened and you get the sense that it’s now firmly established as one of Scotland’s finest wedding venues. Val and her team could not have been more helpful – they really look after every fine detail and many thanks for finding me some ladders!.

My very best wishes go to Peter and Karon and the three kids, Amy, Lewis, and Laura. You all looked beautiful and handsome and I hope you enjoyed the day as much as everyone else. I hope you will all continue to be blessed with good luck and an ability to pick a winner!  It was an emotional day for everyone involved and it was to your great credit that you included your past with your future – it was lovely to see some very special old faces, especially those who travelled the longest distance. Of course there were some things better left in the past – I am still recovering from Neil’s Athens story! Thank you for giving me the opportunity to play a small part at your wedding. Well done to everyone involved for making it such a memorable day but special thanks go to Amy, Laura, Lewis, Neil, Murray and Neil for your help, patience and understanding. Extra special thanks to Peter and Karon – you were fantastic! Here are a few reminders of your perfect day by yon bonnie banks and by yon bonnie braes…………

 

Karon and Peter

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Lisa and Ross – The Lochside House Hotel

Lisa and Ross – The Lochside House Hotel

I first met Lisa when she was a bridesmaid to Claire at her wedding to Paul at the Crutherland House Hotel last year. It was a very special wedding and I took it as a great endorsement when Lisa subsequently asked me to photograph her wedding to Ross. They are part of a delightful crowd of friends who have wonderful family values and I didn’t need to be asked twice before accepting.  I just knew Lisa and Ross’s wedding would be special! They were married at the stunningly beautiful Lochside House Hotel in New Cumnock in Ayrshire and Lisa returned the compliment with Claire joining the gorgeous Nicola and Amy as bridesmaids. This wasn’t my first visit to the Lochside but it was the first when the sun shone brightly. Don’t get me wrong – there was a wee nip in the air at times but what a hotel this is for a wedding when the sun decides to play ball.   The hotel is set in the most beautiful grounds and at this time of year there are all sorts of wildlife active in and around the lochs and reeds and gardens – it is a photographer’s delight. After dinner I spent ten minutes in the company of an excited local wildlife photographer as he scanned the banks of the lochs for the day’s new arrivals. It was like being part of an episode of Springwatch! Within minutes a family of newly hatched and very rare chicks appeared in the late golden spring sunshine and I felt blessed to have been part of a very beautiful day. Of course what had gone before was also very special. Lisa was a stunningly beautiful, natural and very relaxed bride. She loved every minute of her day and her joy came through in everything we did. Ross is a very lucky man but he too had a day to remember. They were both as chilled as they come – resplendent in their finery and the day could not have worked out any better. Everything was timed to perfection, the sun, the music, the laughter and the hospitality.  Indeed the timing was so slick that I almost missed the start of the dancing as we caught some last minute pics in front of the lounge fireplace.

Guests had travelled from numerous continents to join in the celebrations and I am confident they will return home with wonderful memories from a very special wedding. They also got to hear about Ross the poet, his love of a line of M&S thermal boxer shorts, and his tendency to bring his chestnuts into his bath – but the wedding DVD from Viking Video Productions will reveal slightly more from best man Greg than I could possibly publish here!

I must also mention the flowers – they were exceptional but they were provided by a very dear old friend of ours – Bobby McKean and his team at Flowers by Isabel in Blantyre. We bumped into each other as Bobby delivered the flowers and it was an unexpected bonus to see him again. Older, wiser, and very happy with his life, Bobby is a great advert for positivity and for beautiful wedding flowers!

The Lochside House is a fantastic venue for weddings. It is quickly becoming a favourite of mine and is thoroughly deserving of the national accolades and awards won in recent years. They have the most wonderful grand old bridal dressing room which is fantastic for the bridal preparations. It’s so different from the more modern, but equally stunning bridal suite and guest rooms. I said before that I was blown away by all of the hotel’s facilities but the more I visit the better it becomes.  But then all of the hotels I visit are made all the more special when you are in the company of such lovely people. Lisa and Ross come from a good place and all family and friends laughed and joked their way through a wonderful wedding day. It was very special for everyone concerned and I would like to thank each and every guest for their help and their patience. Special thanks to Greg, Andrew and Dean for their help throughout the day. To Nicola, Amy, Claire, and Katie – you were all beautiful and performed your roles to perfection. Thanks for being so kind to me. To Joe, Grace, Alison and Alan – you have so much to be proud of. To Laura and her team at the Lochside House – I can’t wait to come back sometime soon! To Lisa and Ross, thank you once again for the opportunity. Mari and I loved it! Have a great life together as Mr & Mrs and here are a few reminders of your wonderful wedding day……..
Lisa and Ross Continue reading

Lynn and David – The Cruin Loch Lomond

Lynn and David – The Cruin Loch Lomond

It was a welcome return to Loch Lomond for the spectacular wedding of Lynn and David at The Cruin. Nestling amongst a forest of gorgeous pines and old oak trees, The Cruin sits just a few hundred yards past the Cameron House and the Duck Bay Marina on one of the finest wedding stretches anywhere. Well known as a restaurant with an outlook to die for,  The Cruin is transformed at this time of year into an exclusive wedding venue and you will look long and hard to find a friendlier or more beautiful place to get married. The gardens lead down to a private floating jetty and a photographer’s delight. When the sun shines like it did for Lynn and David you get the added bonus of celebrating your marriage on the patio overlooking one of Scotland’s greatest landscapes. It was stunning! By the time darkness fell the Cruin became a fairytale venue with all of the trees bedecked in fairy lights and the glamour had moved indoors for the party – just as the heavens opened. Ach well we were in Scotland after all!

Lynn and David met in a well known but slightly less glamorous Hamilton nightclub and was I glad to see how their tastes had developed and matured over the years! From the Jimmy Choo shoes to the beautiful old Beaufort from Gold Choice Cars, everything was just perfect. It was a fantastic day amidst the splendour of Scotland’s national park. Did I mention the views?  Wow, what a wedding! It was as romantic as they come but then David has a wonderful soft romantic side, as his new father in law explained later. Lynn has been a huge Harry Potter fan for years and for the ultimate marriage proposal David embedded the engagement ring deep into a copy of the Half Blood Prince book – alongside the Unbreakable Vow! What a charmer!

Good luck Lynn and David and may your life continue to be blessed with the kind of happiness we all shared at your wedding. It was an emotional day for everyone involved and I hope you will remember it as the best day of your lives. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to play a small part at your wedding. Well done to everyone involved for making it such a memorable day but special thanks go to Dougie and Wilma, Glynis, David, Anne, Craig, Graham, Stephen and little Craig for your help, patience and understanding. Extra special thanks to the glamorous and beautiful Gemma, Natalie, Georgie and Poppy – you were fantastic! David and Lynn I hope you have a fabulous honeymoon and here are a few reminders of a perfect day on the bonnie, bonnie banks of Loch Lomond….

Lynn and David

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Andy and Angela – The Strathaven Hotel

Andy and Angela – The Strathaven Hotel

Saturday the 11th April and all of Scotland and the waiting world were desperate to see the images from Andy’s wedding. Well here they are folks, the official photographs. You see the very handsome Andy married the very beautiful Angela at one of my favourite venues, the Strathaven Hotel. It was purely a coincidence that somewhere else in Scotland, at exactly the same time, an almost as handsome couple called Andy and Kim were also tying the knot. What fun I had with that on Facebook on Saturday morning! I wonder if the other wedding was as spectacular, as laid back or as warm/cold/freezing/wet/dry  as this one! It was a wonderful day with lots of little original touches but we had at least four seasons of weather in one day! The sun didn’t know where to go as it battled against hailstones, winds and rain. I was delighted, for the most part, that the sun won that battle hands down!

The Strathaven Hotel is a special venue for me. I got married here myself and I always seem to have a wonderful time at this hotel – must be the warmth and professionalism of Sheila and Malcolm who run the hotel so superbly! It was looking especially elegant as Angela decorated the place with the most stunning floral display and a range of personal little decorative touches. She also designed my favourite wedding cake ever! A truly beautiful and original design and how that cake lasted so long without someone being tempted to dive in is a mystery. I certainly was tempted!

Angela and Andy had a wonderful wedding and friends travelled from afar to celebrate with them. Guests from the north and east coasts of Scotland had a brilliant time but commented on how cold it was in Strathaven! It really must have been freezing for the highlanders to mention it! The weather danced a merry dance as hailstones the size of golf balls rained down at one point and brilliant sunshine splashed across the gardens the next. Of course it was all glorious sunshine with Angela and Andy. Angela works at a Veterinary Practice and her Dad, William,  told a few stories about her love of animals. He also told and acted out a wonderful story of the night Angela was born – it was a brilliant speech, very poignant at times but he had all of the guests in fits of laughter. Take a bow William – it was very special.

Andy is an engineer with a great love of cars and a great love for his two best men, Neil and Craig. Neil told an unforgettable story about Andy “borrowing” his dad’s new BMW. Dad Jim held his head in his hands as he learned how his prized possession covered so many unexpected miles from new! Apparently this was a drop in the ocean compared to the tales Craig could have told!

The whole day was such a fun occasion filled with laughter and glorious colours. Angela comes from an amazing family of six beautiful girls. Her four eldest sisters were bridesmaids and they were all stunning in their matching outfits. They were joined by younger sister Lucy and 21 month old Emma Rose as flower girls and they were both gorgeous!

I hope Angela and Andy  are off on the perfect honeymoon. You had the perfect wedding!  You both have great friends and family and my thanks go out to each and every one of them for their patience and co-operation. Special thanks go to Jacqueline, Dawn, Lindsay, Olivia, Lucy, Emma, William, Lesley, Neil, Craig, Peter, Jim, and Rose – you all contributed so much to making sure this was a perfect day for Andy and Angela. Thanks again to Angela and Andy and Emma.  I heard and witnessed so much from your friends and family that I know you have wonderful days ahead of you. Enjoy every day and I trust your marriage will be blessed with everything good in life. I have no idea how the other Andy’s photos ended up but here are a few reminders of a truly perfect day at the Strathaven Hotel ……
Andy And Angela

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