I’d not actually visited Plas Mawr, the Elizabethan house in Conwy which dates back to the 1500’s, before checking it out from a wedding photographer’s point of view.
It’s a very cool place to get married, and definitely something a bit different.
The room where the ceremony will be held is able to fit up to 40 people, and this gives it a very intimate feel.
It is light, with large windows on two sides. A wide angle lens will be required for shots of the bride, groom, and guests during the ceremony. The 24-70 lens will be better for shots of just the bride and groom, so I will use two cameras so as to avoid changing between lenses.
Flash is allowed at Plas Mawr, but the natural light is so good I think it will be best to avoid using it as much as possible.
One point where flash might be needed is when the bride and groom sign the register. The table is lit by three large windows, behind and to the left and right, which will create good hair highlights when complemented by a little fill flash.
I was then shown the other rooms in the house – it is mostly done out to look as it would have done when it was originally lived in, which makes it a really exciting place to take photos.
There are stairs to the tower (which Plas Mawr is best known for) and to an attic room.
The stairs themselves make an excellent point to take a photograph of the bride from above, with small windows creating areas of light and dark that will really bring the photograph to life.
The attic is Rachel’s, the lady who showed me round, favourite room, but she did point out that it might be difficult to climb the steps up there in a wedding dress.
There are big wooden beams which I think could be used to create a great frame for a sequence of photos of the bride and groom.
I also liked the room with a four-poster bed and the kitchen, where there is very good light from the windows. There are so many good backdrops and ways to frame the photos that I’ll almost be spoilt for choice.
The courtyard and garden area outside is large enough for group shots. Plas Mawr and its tower make a good backdrop and the doorways make good frames.
Sychant Pass House is a two minute drive from the town of Conwy and tucked away in the woods on the way up to the Sychnant Pass.
The room where the bride will be getting married has a king size bed with ornate wood carvings. There is a skylight and numerous light sources that will make an atmospheric image.
I liked the chess set (I’m a bit of a chess boffin) and the fact the rooms are named after TS Eliot’s cats. It gives the place a kind of bookish feel that appeals to me.
There is a large lawn and a courtyard, either of which would be suitable for larger group shots.
The drawing room could be used for group shots if some of the furniture is moved around.
There are daisies and bluebells on the lawn, which could be used as for foreground elements in portrait shots of bridesmaids/children.
I’d noticed photos of the swimming pool at Sychnant Pass House on its website and thought the reflections might make for some good photographs, but have ruled it out because the humidity might kill my camera (it’s happened to me twice before) and wouldn’t be great for the bride’s hair.