Stirred by wild romance, drawn to aesthetics and infatuated by poetic spaces – what we search for in a wedding photographer is quite the list. We want the artists who will do drama to a destination wedding location. The photojournalists who tell a story in the most potent, unexpected way. The creatives who notice beauty in the intricate details we’ve spent hundreds of hours planning, sourcing and perfecting. In a sea of talent in the wedding industry, everyone has their strengths and we align them with the style of the wedding. However, every now and again we stumble across someone who has it all.
Immortalizing fleeting moments through a fine art lens, London wedding photographer Nina Wernicke is an artist we recommend in a heartbeat. Cinematic yet soulful, Nina’s frames spill with emotion. In a hypnotic collision of drama and quiet intimacy, she tells stories that deeply imprint.
We love that Nina’s editorial eye and fine art captures paint moments that are rich with detail. The fragility of tulle. The intricate embellishment of a gown. The delicate details of a tablescape. Nina shares how it felt to be right there, intoxicated by the beauty of every little moment.
Based in London but travelling wth world to capture destination weddings in beautiful pockets, we chat with Nina to find out more about her style.
“A truly timeless image, although maybe not technically perfect, should not only capture a feeling, it should elicit one too.”
How do you evoke emotion through your photographs?
Emotion within imagery can be both hidden and nuanced, or specific and obvious, depending on the day, the subject matter and the atmosphere. But a truly timeless image, although maybe not technically perfect, should not only capture a feeling, it should elicit one too. As a photographer I find great satisfaction in creating evocative pieces of art, consistently seeking to capture emotional moments at the intersection of connection, intimacy and intense joy.
Different perspectives give me much more freedom of expression so through this, plus considered composition and the manipulation of natural light, I am able to influence the emotional response a viewer might have to any of my images. I’m not an imposing presence and I certainly don’t like to direct my subjects too strictly, instead I aim to capture the true essence of the atmosphere and my couples’ profound love for one another through timeless portraiture and cinematic frames. This artistic, intuitive approach requires me to pivot from one subject to the next but it’s a truly heady mix which results in emotionally evocative imagery, alive with authenticity, movement and depth.
Often, it’s the magical fleeting moments and finer details that can really freeze a wedding in time through photography. What captivates you?
I wholeheartedly agree – the most impactful images are those that communicate the story of a treasured moment, that if not captured at that split second would go unnoticed and ultimately be forgotten. Being able to frame these memories, whilst being welcomed into someone’s inner circle to witness and document their most special (and vulnerable) of occasions is an incredible honour. But honestly, simplicity is everything.
Being in the right place at the right time means being unwaveringly intuitive and observational, with an acute awareness of light, form and detail. There’s a skill in knowing when to step in and when to step back, allowing each beautiful and unique moment to present itself naturally. Whether that’s sympathetically observing beloved friends and family, finding perfectly diffused light in the most intimate of moments or simply capturing the day’s distinctive details, it’s often these sweet but simple instances that provide the real magic.
Describe the most beautiful image you’ve ever created.
I honestly couldn’t select just one beautiful image from my years of documenting stories for the modern romantics among us but my perennial favourites are the soulful stills which have an understated elegance and a timeless, editorial aesthetic. Of course, timeless shouldn’t necessarily mean formal and editorial shouldn’t be devoid of emotion; my images tell a story through candid moments, details, tones, emotions, movement and beautiful imperfections, executed with a refined, painterly approach.
Whilst I’m a photographer whose love for art parallels photography, my main focus is capturing a day with authenticity and style, ensuring nothing is missed and what’s most important to my clients is front and centre. It gives me great pleasure to know that with my work I can help people keep alive the memory of what makes them who they are, from the grandest of statements to the tiniest of gestures.
How do you create a cinematic image? What makes it soulful?
To me, a truly soulful, cinematic image is one that stirs an emotional response from the viewer, is multi-layered and one that you want to look at again and again. That could be through an artistic composition, perfectly dappled sunlight or the elegant movement of a dress as it’s swept up by the breeze. Or maybe it’s a beautiful amalgamation of all of these things.
My practice is not to repeat the same images over and over again, although cinematic in style I create images that you can still see yourself in. We are all individuals; we like different things, we act differently, love differently…we even smile and kiss differently. It’s those deep connections and romantic nuances that make a couple unique and make each and every frame a complete story in itself, culminating in a soulful narrative capable of transcending trends and time.
How do you tell the story of a place and the sensory experience of a destination wedding through photography?
Roaming the world with my camera, framing moments and creating memories is a huge inspiration to me. The desire to discover, to move and to capture the diverse flavour of life the world over is something I thrive off and is something I will equally never tire of.
I believe visiting new places, experiencing varying cultures and sampling exciting but unfamiliar cuisines requires a fresh perspective each and every time, a clean slate if you like. Fully immersing yourself in a brand new environment is the only way to really get your surroundings and understand and appreciate why your client has chosen that particular location for their most special of occasions. From the architecture infused with story and sentiment, to the far-reaching vistas festooned with greenery and the complete assault of the senses – the new scents, sounds, and tastes. It’s about immersing myself in my couple’s vision, being able to truly understand the soul of their chosen, cherished destination and standing alongside their dedicated supplier team every step of the way.
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