The light, the air, the food, the people….just a few of the things that make shooting in France so beautiful and what captured British photographer Claire Macintyre’s heart long ago that she decided to pursue her career in the French Riviera. Claire Macintyre is a wedding photographer now based in the South of France, she has shot over 100 weddings in her 10-year career which started in fashion and editorial shoots. Weddings came along after her sister got married and she saw the opportunity to capture so many emotions and stories, which creatively is what appealed to her and still does now.
Ever wondered what it’s like from the other side of the lens? We interview Claire to find out what being a wedding photographer in the South of France is all about
– Where is your favourite location in France to shoot and why?
Ah! That’s too hard!!! I am as happy as I can be shooting ANYWHERE in France, but if you pushed me I think I would say St Tropez. It’s just EVERYTHING. Especially out of season when all the tourists leave and the locals return to their normal, elegant lives.
– What makes weddings in France different to the UK?
Almost everything is different. The weddings are more relaxed, the venues are more incredible, the good weather is in abundance and the light is magical. Weddings in France tend to feel more like big holidays with family and friends and an amazing wedding day thrown into the mix! If you are in love with France then you will know why it’s the only place to get married.
– Why did you relocate to the South of France as a wedding photographer?
I’ve been dreaming of living in France since I was 18 and travelled here for 6 months. The lifestyle, the light, the air, the people, the food, the weather, there’s so many reasons! As a wedding photographer, I get to work with couples from all over the world and shoot in some of the most incredible venues. It was such a lot of work to make my dream a reality and some times I don’t know how I achieved it, but the universe aligned and here I am!
– What’s your photographer style?
Fine art, editorial, timeless, cinematic and romantic. I’m heavily inspired by fashion, art and the cinema, especially old movies and photographers from the 20’s to the 50’s. I am often called the vintage wedding photographer.
– How would an English couple find you?
Most of my couples find me in my favorite place, Instagram, and the rest find me through recommendations and past weddings published in magazines and blogs.
– Do you prefer a Chateau or Beach wedding?
Can I say both? Lol! I think the beauty of the south of France is that you can be at a beach wedding one day and a few days later at a chateau wedding only 30 minutes away!
– What is one of your favourite wedding images you’ve taken and why?
This image from year 1 of my wedding career is my favourite because it is the most intimate and cinematic photo of an incredible couple. I keep a print of it framed by my computer to remind me of exactly what I want to achieve for my couples at every wedding, even today nearly 6 years later. I’m incredibly proud of it. It’s really easy to look at other photographers work and get distracted from your own style and vision and this image helps me keep on my own path creatively.
– Do you cover winter weddings?
Absolutely! Last year I had the pleasure of shooting an intimate wedding in a lodge in Chamonix up in the mountains! Snow and rain are no challenge! I laugh in the face of winter weather!
– Whats the number one piece of advice you’d give couples for their wedding day?
Do what YOU want. Don’t be persuaded by anyone else to do something you don’t want to do, if you want to marry abroad then go for it, even if people make you think it is unfair to expect guests to fly off to be there. I promise once the guests are there they will never regret coming. Oh and relax and enjoy and make sure you remember to hold onto each other and not let go the whole day, it breaks my heart to see couples running about worrying about trivial things on their wedding day rather than just holding each other and being present together in their day.