Gemma & Stephen’s Wedding

Gemma & Stephen’s Wedding

Gemma & Stephen’s Wedding


The best compliment you can give your photographer is to keep inviting them back to document your life.

Anita Richter


Part Of The Family

I first met Gemma and Stephen when they bought their newborn son Jaxon to my studio for a photoshoot along with his big brother Cooper and their dogs! Gemma booked me on a recommendation from her sister Claire who had booked me for her newborn daughter the year before. Gemma said as I made her look good 4 weeks after giving birth she would definitely book me if she ever got married – and that ladies and gentleman is how I ended up at my last wedding of 2023 in Grangemouth. 

I love creating visual histories for families and watching them grow. As another bride said to me, ” It’s more than just a job for you” and she is 100% right. Also I think Stephen invited me for Christmas at one point during the wedding so I’ve well and truly got my feet under this families table!

A Tale As Old As Time

Picture the scene…Sportsters Bar in Falkirk in February 2019 . Stephen is out with the lads, lads, lads on a stag do and Gemma is on a girls night out to cheer up a pal who’d been through a break up. Now I don’t know if this was a clever chat up line, wishful thinking, or just written in the stars but Gemma and Stephen started chatting because they thought they knew one another. Whilst chatting they realised that they didn’t know each other at all but hey, the chat was going well and they quite liked each other. Before you could say ‘last orders’  they were on their way to becoming a couple.

They moved in together not long before the first Covid lockdown so Stephen said he knew that having survived that they could survive anything and wanted to propose. He had grand plans to propose abroad but the dreaded ‘c’ word cancelled that as well so on the 26th September 2020 he proposed to Gemma in Dumfries! Not quite as exotic as he’d planned but she still said yes!


When I arrived at the Leapark Hotel Gemma and her sister were getting their make up done, the tunes were on, the bubbles flowing. I set about capturing all the bridal details.

This is a picture of brides blue shoes

I loved that Gemma had chosen her shoes as her ‘something blue’.

This is a picture of the bride's niece trying on the brides shoes

As did her beautiful niece who we got to try them on. What a lovely image this will be to give her on her wedding day.

Here Come The Boys

Whilst upstairs all was calm, downstairs was a hive of activity. Staff were putting the final touches to the ceremony and guests were busily arriving in all their finery. Amongst all the comings and goings a white wedding car arrived and out stepped the boys.

This is a picture of the groom and his sons.

Look how smart they look.

Bodily Fluids

It was a short but lovely service although there was quite a lot of mentions of Stephen’s…eherm..toilet habits. A topic that the best man also came back to in his speech later on!

This is a picture of the wedding ceremony

The couple also had an ingenious method for keeping their two littlest guests ‘contained’ during the ceremony. Jaxon and his cousin Charlotte were ensconced in high chairs with a packed lunch. Genius! And it worked a treat.

Finally though as his Mum and Dad were announced as Husband and Wife, Jaxon broke free from one of his granddads and made a beeline for his mummy.

This is a picture of the couples son running down the aisle to his parents.

All together now – Awwwwww!

And together as a family they walked back down the aisle.

This is a picture of married couple walking back down the aisle with their sons

Tractor Time!

Keeping young Jaxon in one place proved to be very tricky as we found out trying to take the group shots. One minute he was there and the next minute Gemma caught the piper running after him out of the corner of her eye!

As everyone panicked, Jaxon came scooting back quite the thing on a toy tractor he’d managed to procure from goodness only knows where.

Wedding couples son on a toy tractor

So naturally I did what any good photographer would do and included it in the wedding pictures.

This is a picture of the wedding party

I love it! I am also chuffed with how the picture turned out as well as a van had inconveniently parked right where I needed to stand to get such a large wedding party in, even with my wide angled lens on my camera. So I took three pictures and stitched them together in photoshop and I think it looks fab!

Horses Heads

You would be forgiven with that heading to think I was about to start talking about The Godfather! But the nearby local attraction The Kelpies was somewhere that Stephen had mentioned he would like some photos taken. So off we headed in the wedding car to a spot I’d recced earlier in the week.

Bride and Groom at the Kelpies in Falkirk

Gemma had seen the pictures I’d posted on Instagram after my recce and said how lovely it would be if swans  appeared again. Well what do you know, I’m not saying book me as your wedding photographer and I’ll make swans appear but…

Then we headed back to the hotel for a few formal images as well.

This is a picture of the bride and groom
This is a picture of the bride and groom

You Won’t Believe Your Eyes!

Whilst we were away getting photos Magic Pete had been entertaining the guests.

This is a picture of a magician surprising wedding guests

As you can see they were very surprised to see a bottle of wine that hadn’t been drunk yet! Lol!!

But that wasn’t the only entertainment Gemma and Stephen had put on for their guests. First came the speeches (which included more about Stephen soiling himself!). Jaxon by this point, to the envy of many, had popped on his comfy PJs and was watching his tablet.

This is a picture of a wee boy tuning out the wedding party

Just as everyone was starting to enjoy their dessert a waitress tripped with  a whole tray of spoons right in front of the top table. Wait! What? She wasn’t a waitress but a singer from Singer Secreto. What followed was mayhem of the best kind. Singing, dancing, napkin waving and a very large conga.

Singers Secreto singing waitress
This is an image of the wedding party singing and dancing
This is a picture of a wedding party doing the conga

Time To Dance

With the evening guests all in situ it was time to start the evening ceremonies. The family made their way into the room and young Jaxon had his third change of the day (talk about upstaging everyone!).

This is a picture of the bride and groom and kids walking into evening reception.

Time to cut the cake (and get an early nibble if you’re Jaxon)!

This is a picture of the cake cutting

Finally it was time to dance together for the first time as husband and wife.

this is a picture of the bride and grooms first dance

The pair of them hadn’t stopped smiling and laughing all day long.

Then it was time for a father and daughter dance, but with a difference. This wasn’t a soppy slow dance but a full on rock out complete with air guitar!

This is a picture of the father and daughter dance

Not to be outdone, Stephen got his Nana and her zimmer frame up for a boogie!

This is a picture of a groom dancing with his gran

I love this family and they made me feel so welcome. It is wonderful getting to capture so many important moments in people’s lives and I am beyond honoured when families trust me to do it again and again.

Congratulations again Mr and Mrs McNie xXx

This is a black and white image of the bride and groom at The Kelpies