Lancashire-based Nik of Nik Bryant Photography (and now the newly-created Bellis & Bryant collab of photography and videography) has been chatting to us today about his career to date, why he loves the honour of being involved in a couple’s big day and how he’s going to be your best mate by the time your wedding comes around!
He might’ve only started shooting professionally originally for the free drinks at nightclubs but UNVEILED Network Member Nik’s come a long way from those uni days and now captures weddings with his particular brand of skill and flair up and down the UK. If you’re looking for a friendly and laid back professional to really harness the magic and essence of the day and take away any concerns you’ve got about the photography side of wedding planning, you might want to read on to catch what Nik has to say about the dos, don’ts and how’s of booking the right pro for the job.
Nik’s currently also offering all of you Brides Up North couples a lovely 10% off all packages, so you won’t want to miss that!
Hi! I’m Nik, proud Northerner and Boltonian. I love to create amazing wedding photographs and stories for my couples and their families. I am based in Lancashire but love to travel, covering the whole country and even abroad.
Where did your passion for photography come from – and how did it turn into a career?
As cliché as it sounds, I feel like I have always had a camera in my hand. From being a kid at school and on school trips taking pictures, to being that one of my friendship group who had a camera everywhere we went. While at university, I took a job working as a nightclub photographer (mainly for the free entry and the free drinks) but this is where it sparked that it could be more than a hobby. I started shooting live bands and ended up covering some major names in the alternative music scene, then winding up shooting Missy Elliot, Duran Duran and The Chemical Brothers at a major festival. After this a couple of friends had seen my pictures and asked if I could cover their wedding. Obviously, I said yes! And the rest as they say is history. It was a case of being in the right place at the right time and I have never looked back. I don’t honestly think I could see myself doing anything else other than being a photographer.
What do you love about capturing a couple’s big day?
What’s not to love? Being given the immense honour of being solely responsible for capturing all the memories and beautiful moments is probably the best feeling ever. Being welcomed as part of the family for a day and getting to work with amazing people on one of the best days of their lives!
How would you describe your style of photography?
I like to think of myself as an honest and relaxed wedding photographer. Many would call what I do as documentary, with a smattering of portraits, but I hate the phrase “documentary wedding photographer” because for most of the wedding day there isn’t any other way to approach it. All I know is I like my images to try and represent your wedding day how you remember it.
What’s your approach like on the wedding day?
I like to get to know my couples before the wedding so that when I arrive, I am not a total stranger. I want to be more of a mate with a camera than just a hired photographer. For most of the day, as I mentioned earlier, I will be there to photograph in a documentary style just capturing things as they happen with a few small intervals throughout the day for some portraits and family photos. I don’t want my couples to get bored or to be away from the party and their guests for too long, so I will break up the portrait sessions to different bits of the day so you can spend time with friends and family.
How do you build relationships with your couples?
When we’re not in the middle of a global pandemic, I like to first meet my couples at a local bar and have a chat over a beer or a gin and tonic. From there I’m available for any advice, recommendations or even just a chat. I want to get to know my couples so they’re more relaxed on their wedding day.
What sets you apart from other photographers?
I want to hang out and be as excited as you are about your wedding. I want you to feel completely comfortable with me, as it will help you be relaxed on your day.
Do you have a favourite part of the day to capture?
I love it all. From the calm of prep in the morning, to the nerves and anxious energy right before the ceremony, all the way through to the party.
Where does your work take you?
I mainly work across Lancashire, Manchester and Cheshire but travel all over the UK and will happily jump on a plane to travel with you to cover any destination.
What would be your top tips for couples searching for a wedding photographer?
- Make sure you do your research. Look at websites, social media, everything. The biggest mistake you can make is not looking at photographers work and not checking out multiple photographers. I will never be annoyed that a couple doesn’t book me because they prefer someone else’s work.
- Speak with the photographer before booking, make sure you are all on the same page and that you get on. We are the people that you will potentially be seeing the most on your wedding day so we have to get along!
- Book as soon as you fall in love with your photographer! Photographers can only be in one place at a time and often book up fast and some will only take a limited number of weddings each year. If you know who you want, go get them!
And the no-nos?
- Not having a contract. Every wedding photographer should have a contract so if they don’t have one then be super cautious. Contracts are there to protect you as much as they protect the photographer.
- Please don’t ghost us. We totally understand that you are emailing and contacting loads of wedding suppliers and we really don’t mind if you book someone else, just let us know.
- Don’t just throw money at it. The most expensive doesn’t always make it the best. If you have a budget, try and stick to it. Work with your suppliers and if something is out of budget ask about alternative options.
What options do you offer when couples are booking you?
I have three different packages, starting at £1500 and they all cover a full day, from prep through to the party, with some packages including albums and keepsakes. If anyone is looking for shorter coverage or a bespoke package then they just have to ask and I will do what I can to accommodate. Second shooters and pre wedding shoots can also be booked on request.
Is there a special discount that you would like to offer to our readers?
I am offering all Brides Up North readers 10% off all packages. Just mention this when getting in touch.
Is there anything else that you would like to tell us about?
I really love pineapple on pizza. I know it’s a strange thing to add in an interview about wedding photography but I feel it can say so much about a person. But bringing it back to a more relevant note, if you are looking for a photo and video combo package, I recently set up www.bellisandbryant.co.uk with a good friend of mine!