Aug 8, 2013

What the Heck is a Wedding Report?

Today we are featuring a very exciting and creative wedding service that I believe everyone needs to take into consideration. There are tons of photographers and videographers, florists, caterers, DJs, planners, etc. But how many wedding vendors focus all of their service on writing about your wedding? You’re lucky if you get a blog post related to your wedding by any of the aforementioned wedding vendors. How neat would it be to receive a hardbound book that contains somewhere in the ball park of 12,000 words all related to the experience of your wedding?

I never knew such a vendor existed and I think “The Wedding Report” have somehow managed to bridge the gap between photography and videography. With this new entrance of services, any wedding will feel incomplete unless you have a capable writer reporting on every aspect of your wedding. I honestly wish I knew of such a service prior to my own wedding. I’m already convinced that I will request for a Wedding Report during our vow renewals several years from now.

Ali Lovegrove Photography 2012-03-01_148

For many, writing has taken a back seat to this advanced and speedy technology. The beauty of words have not withered, just people’s interest in writing them. It’s great to see all these vintage wedding decorations and ideas coming into the mainstream, but what’s more vintage than writing? Some may call it archaic, but there’s a lot of things that can be captured strictly in words that do not always translate well in a photograph or a film. Writing belongs in its own genre and has earned it’s right to wedge it’s way between photography and videography. Hopefully more people will take notice and we’ll see a revival of pure writing.

Emma Woodhouse hails from the United Kingdom and is anxious to christen the United States with a Wedding Report. Take this into real consideration folks, there aren’t many opportunities in your life when you can invite an author to come out to your wedding and write an engaging tale of what they saw, tasted, smelled, etc.

Emma has been so gracious as to provide us with a dazzling explanation of exactly what a Wedding Report is and how the idea even came about to begin with:

Ali Lovegrove Photography 2012-03-01_167

Once upon a time, I was hanging out with a bunch of incredibly savvy women who had all got married around the same time as me. They too had little blogs following their journey down the aisle and they too were now wondering where they stood in this newlywed world with a very minor online following.

Whilst these ladies were keen to keep their blogs going, I wasn’t. Mine had very much been our story – it chronicled my thought processes and my experience of being a bride. I wasn’t interested in talking generically about planning weddings.

So I went home to my husband and I debriefed him on this conversation, explaining that my friends were continuing their blogs but I was done. The one thing I was interested in however, was writing about actual weddings in actual real time.

“I wish I could just go to more weddings and write about them,” I mused out loud.

He looked at me strangely and I looked at him like someone had just clubbed me round the head.

“And then I could give them a story of their day in return from them inviting me to their wedding,” I continued, the bolt of lightning burning brighter in my brain with every passing second.

“Or you could get them to pay you for it,” said my ever enterprising husband.

“Yeah,” I conceded. “But the point would be that I’d be creating a legacy, and it would be based on the actual wedding – not on the planning or derived from pictures without having ever actually met the couple. It’d be a service, not a showcase.”

The husband nodded and returned to his Playstation, unaware that I was floating the idea on Twitter to my small number of followers, or that they were loving the concept.

Wed Reporter notes by Nick Tucker Photography

The next evening, I walked into the lounge and announced, “I’ve got my first booking.”

He looked a little baffled and I explained that in a mere 24 hours, a flashbang of an idea had become a fledgling business. I had no idea what I was charging, what I would deliver at the end of it or really what I was doing, but I knew I was on to something.

Since that first day, the blog has been reinvented five times, I enlisted the help of an amazing designer to create beautiful bespoke books, I corralled someone else to become an associate writer with me so that we can offer more wedding reports to more people and we’ve witnessed and documented 35 marriages.

Why?

Well, because no one else does that. Sure, you have your photos and your film, but that’s so aesthetic that you can end up remembering only what those images looked like, rather than what it was like to be in the actual moment. What a traditional narrative gives you is a wider scope of context and a deeper well of emotions I truly believe that the written word provokes your imagination in a much more cerebral way. As such, we try to position a wedding report somewhere between your wedding photos and video in order to contextualise and to gently prompt the experience of actually being in that moment.

So you might still be wondering what you get at the end of it. Well, in a nutshell it’s approximately 12,000 words of your very own love story, of which you are the main characters. It documents the atmosphere, the ambience and the details of your wedding day through creative non-fiction. It probably contains more adjectives then any real publisher would ever permit. It should, hopefully, make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up a little.

Report books by Ali Lovegrove Photography

You can choose the design layout of your wedding report, you can choose to commission bespoke artwork or incorporate some photos, you can choose how many hard copy books you want us to publish for you, you can share a fully identical electronic wedding report online with all your friends and family. If you want, you can take the words and put them in your photo album or turn them into thank you cards or make wallpaper out of your report for your downstairs bathroom – it’s entirely up to you.

And you know what? If that means you have kids and one day your kids pull your wedding report off the bookshelf and learn about what you were like on the happiest day of your life, then so much the better. And if it means that in your twilight years you re-read your love story and you remember that gorgeous moment that your memory box had misplaced, then we’ve done our jobs.

Wed Reporter by Alan Law Photography 5

You’re probably thinking you’ve never heard of it before or that you didn’t know such a thing existed. I get that a lot. But I refer you to the first part of this post where I explained that I made this up. Did I make it up so that I could eat a wedding breakfast on a regular basis? Not so much. Did I make it up so that I could only work weekends? I wish, but it actually takes a huge number of hours to write and edit a report, so this is definitely a full time job.

I made it up because there was a gap in the narrative of how weddings are documented. I made it up in case there’s ever a technological apocalypse and, God forbid, you don’t have access to your images or the right medium to play your DVD on anymore. I made it up so that people who can’t make it to your wedding still know exactly what went on without looking at a bunch of photos that are more or less meaningless to them.

But most of all, I made it up because most people don’t realise the magnitude of getting married until they’re standing at the altar hearing those words come out of their mouths. It’s pretty damn magical and it’s amazing that our job is to try and transcribe that epic moment.

Report book by Ali Lovegrove Photography

Thank you to Emma Woodhouse for contributing and performing this great service to brides and grooms. We wish you the best in this business and hope that one day you’ll be able to deliver a Wedding Report to the United States!

 

-APL

 

 

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