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Capturing Timeless Moments: The Art of Documentary Wedding Photography

James Matthews's (Eyes2Me Photography) style of wedding photography is called documentary, or sometimes described as PhotoJournalistic.

"I can't recommend eyes2me photography enough. Nothing was too much for him throughout our wedding day. It was like he was there but wasn't, and every picture was captured. Down to earth, too. Highly recommended. If you want a photographer, this guy is 100%."

What is a documentary style of wedding photography?

A documentary wedding photographer captures real-life events, people, and situations objectively and truthfully. Their style involves capturing candid moments unfolding without intervening or manipulating the scene.

Documentary wedding photographers aim to tell a story in their images. Their photographs often strongly emphasise capturing the essence of a moment, portraying raw emotions, and conveying the reality of a situation.

Wedding Ceremony Gelligaer
Wedding Ceremony Gelligaer

Instead of posed and staged shots, a documentary wedding photographer focuses on capturing genuine, unposed moments as they naturally unfold. They discreetly blend into the background, ensuring they capture precious moments that may otherwise go unnoticed by the couple and guests.

Documentary Wedding Photography
Documentary Wedding Photography

Natural light is expected in documentary photography, as it helps create a sense of realism and adds to the overall atmosphere of the image.

Documentary wedding photographers prioritise capturing the happy couple naturally, allowing the surroundings to provide context and enhance the narrative. Creating visual narratives that document and bring awareness to various aspects of the wedding day.

Documentary wedding photography at Pencoed House
Documentary wedding photography - Ceremony at Pencoed House

This style of photography has become increasingly popular in the digital image years. It is based on the natural approach of the photographer, who observes the couple and the guests throughout the day while recording the wedding details and events as they happen unobtrusively.

No shouting or lining up of guests. The main goal of this style is to make a photojournalistic story of your wedding by capturing natural moments rather than setting up poses. These images convey genuine emotion.

This approach allows you to fully immerse yourself in the celebration, spending quality time with loved ones instead of being stuck in awkward poses or lengthy group photo sessions.

A documentary wedding photographer will immortalise laughter, tears, and pure happiness through their lens, creating images filled with natural beauty, authenticity, and overflowing emotion.

Wedding Day laughter Caerphilly
Wedding Day Laughter in Caerphilly

Preserving Authentic Moments:

One of documentary wedding photography's greatest strengths is its ability to preserve authentic moments. Rather than staging or posing shots, the photographer becomes an unobtrusive observer, capturing genuine emotions and interactions.

From the nervous excitement before the ceremony to the teary-eyed glances during the vows, these fleeting, unscripted moments are the heart and soul of a wedding day.

Telling a Compelling Story:

The photographs become a visual diary, documenting the wedding's emotions, details, and ambience. Every aspect of the day is thoughtfully documented, from the intricate lace on the bride's dress to the laughter shared during the speeches. These images combine to form a cohesive and genuine narrative, allowing couples to relive their wedding day for years.

Wedding day preparations Cardiff
Wedding day preparations in Cardiff

wedding day moments captured
Wedding day moments captured -Vale Hotel Cardiff
Wedding day kids Cardiff
Wedding day kids in Cardiff

Celebrating the Unseen:

In the whirlwind of a wedding day, countless moments go unnoticed by the couple. Documentary wedding photography excels at capturing these unseen moments, revealing the beauty in the ordinary. The stolen glances, whispered words, and shared laughter between loved ones are documented, creating a rich tapestry of memories.

By focusing on the candid and unposed, documentary photographers can capture the true essence of the day, encapsulating the big moments and the smaller, more intimate ones that often hold the most meaning.

Wedding Day laughter - Oldwalls Swansea
Wedding Day laughter - Oldwalls Swansea

Horrible wedding food
Horrible wedding food
Don't get to close
Don't get too close.

Embracing Authenticity and Connection:

Documentary wedding photography embraces authenticity and connection between the couple and their loved ones. By documenting genuine interactions, the photographer visualises the love and joy that permeates the day.

The images become a tangible reminder of the bond shared between the couple and the love they are surrounded by. Documentary photographers understand the importance of building a connection with their clients, enabling them to capture the most authentic and heartfelt moments throughout the day.

Wedding ceremony kiss
Wedding ceremony kiss


Documentary wedding photography is more than just capturing photographs; it is about preserving the essence of love and celebrating the unique moments that make each wedding day memorable. Documentary photographers create a visual narrative that becomes a cherished heirloom for generations by focusing on authenticity, storytelling, and connection.

If you seek a wedding photography style that encapsulates genuine emotions and fleeting moments, documentary wedding photography is undoubtedly the perfect choice.


The short answer is Yes. I'm often asked to take family shots or group photos. Just ask me on the day, and it's not a problem. They will be quick and not posed—just fast, simple photos to remind you of the moment.

Wedding evening celebrations - West Wales
Wedding evening celebrations - West Wales

Bride and Maids on the wedding day - Bryn Meadows Caerphilly
Bride and Maids on the wedding day - Bryn Meadows Caerphilly

Wedding party in Blackwood
Wedding party in Blackwood

Wedding day confetti moment at Cardiff
Wedding day confetti moment at Cardiff

Eyes2Me Photography does not accept or follow photograph lists.

Specific images you require must be relayed to me during our meeting of phone discussions and pointed out during the wedding day.


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