Simple, organic, happy wedding pictures: behind the lens with Peppermint Love Photography
04 Mar 2016
We’ve fallen for her romantic, airy photography that showcases couples in golden light on their wedding day and captures that magic spark between them. The photographer behind Peppermint Love Photography, Kasia Nowak, tells us more about her refreshing style and why you should try an unplugged wedding
How would you describe your style of photography?
Fresh, light and authentic.
How did you start out in wedding photography?
I grew up in a small Polish town where, after graduating from high school, I began studying computer science. Back then, I was taught to believe this was the only way to go if I want to get a decent job but I never stopped feeling like I wanted something more from life. So I quit the uni, left home and moved to the UK with nothing but a hope for more satisfying life (and a backpack). I got a job in Bournemouth Hospital (which I loved by the way), learnt the language, met my fiancé and began my life again.
I started taking photos to show the beautiful English nature and landscapes to my family back home and found myself passionate about design, light and life stories. I set up a little online photography portfolio I called Peppermint Love. I moved from landscape photography to pets, children, families and eventually tried weddings, where I found myself very happy and passionate about new challenges and new stories to tell through my work. I eventually grew that idea into a thriving wedding photography business after several years of hard work.
Who are your ideal clients?
In my work I strive for natural looking images and I pride myself on the fact that people feel at ease with me. I want to create simple, organic and happy images and the clients I want to work with are the ones who believe what I believe. The ones who prefer candidness to formal group shots, the ones who don’t think about Pinterest poses but want to enjoy and savour every moment of their own wedding, the ones that love simplicity and laugh a lot, the ones that kiss with their eyes closed.
Can you choose a picture that encapsulates everything you want to achieve in a wedding photograph? Tell us what it is about this image that you love.
I strive to always create a collection of photographs that reflects the feeling and atmosphere of a wedding so choosing just one here is not easy. My favourite shot as of recently is this one of Leanne with her dad and very soon husband-to-be. To me this photo shows a precious moment with so many emotions, as well as the relationship the bride has with her dad and guests. If I can make someone feel something while they are looking at my images – my job here is done.
Photographers seem to inject a lot of their personality into their work. What are your inspirations?
I’m inspired by nature, light, colour and my couples – their ideas, stories and love that they share as well as the amazing and very inspiring reviews I receive from them.
How far in advance should those interested look to book you? Do people stand a chance of getting you last minute?
I always advise couples to book my services as soon as they confirm their wedding date and venue. I take bookings up to two years in advance but I have booked a couple of last minute weddings before so yes, get in touch.
What’s the most challenging part of photographing a wedding?
I would say the most challenging part of photographing a wedding is gathering people for family pictures. It’s the most time consuming part of the day and the least favourite for the guests. But family photos are some of the most important also, so I’m always working on improving this time.
How can couples help to ensure the best work?
Consider an engagement shoot if you feel uneasy about being in front of the camera, make time in your wedding timeline for group photos and portraits, and try an 'unplugged' wedding (or at least a ceremony).
What are the three most important questions for couples to ask their photographer, in your opinion?
In my opinion if you are meeting with a wedding photographer, your main objective should be to get to know her or him. Having a person who is nice, who you can trust and feel at ease with is far more important than what camera they use – in my opinion. So the three questions would be:
- Why did you become a wedding photographer?
- What do you do in your free time?
- When do you feel inspired?
What’s your opinion on the controversial ‘group shots’ – can you give us an example of yours?
Group shots can take a lot of time and can be the least favourite part of the day. But they are also very important. Communication is the key here. I ask my couples to assign one organised family member to help and always explain how adding or taking away group photos from the 'traditional' list affects the time. I still like to capture the group photos in the most candid way possible, giving a little direction and definitely encouraging guests looking at each other and laughing – rather than looking into the lens and pulling unnatural smiles.
In terms of trends, what do you think is the most interesting at the moment?
I think at the moment the most interesting trend is for boho brides – the ones with off shoulder wedding dresses, some in blush colours, effortless (not over-styled) hair with flowers in it, succulent bouquets and natural colour palettes.
What’s the most common misconception that you have to correct with couples? The thing you’d most like to communicate to the masses.
That you don’t have to leave your wedding guests for hours on your wedding day to go and take formal portraits with your photographer. For me, if I have you for 20 minutes after the ceremony and another 10-15 minutes after the wedding breakfast – this gives me plenty of time to take some lovely portraits of you.
What’s been your most memorable wedding to photograph, and why?
Wow, I wouldn’t even know where to begin to find my most memorable wedding I photographed. The most interesting wedding as of recently is this Halloween wedding I photographed last year at Stourhead Gardens. The bride and groom styled their wedding with so many fascinating details I have never seen before. I didn’t expect it and to be honest if someone told me what I was going to see there I wouldn’t think it would work at all – but it did, and it was like a photographer’s dream to capture it all.
Can you tell us why you think wedding photography is worth the investment?
Your wedding day is one of the most important days in your life and you need a good wedding photographer to capture it all and not miss a thing. A professional wedding photographer uses high quality equipment, years of experience and talent to capture the special atmosphere of your big day. A good wedding photographer will not be distracted by chatting guests, will not feel awkward standing in the middle of the church taking photos of you, will not interrupt and will not direct how the story unfolds. She/he will know how to make you feel at ease, give you tips and gentle directions to make you look beautiful backlit by the evening sunshine. If it’s a bright day or a dark night – she will get the shot. Every time. She will dress appropriately, predict the tears and look like she is having fun while staying professional and working hard. A good wedding photographer is worth every penny.
Finally, if you weren’t a wedding photographer, what would you be?
An astronaut. This one was easy!