A month before Christmas I was shooting Neal's head shots, complete with beard for his upcoming audition for BBC drama Peaky Blinders. "I'm getting married, you want to do our pictures?" I grinned. "Of course I do, Neal. Can I do you some free engagement pictures too?"
Neal being an actor and Emily being a model and a dancer, I was truly blessed with a couple of gorgeous, and gorgeous-looking people happy to let me experiment and hike them for miles along the Thames. We started out at Tower Bridge.
Taking in City Hall, or as we Londoners call it 'Boris' House'.
The most wonderful part of an engagement shoot, is how you get to know your couple, discovering not just their 'best side', not just how to pose them and to light them, but also what they're like as people.
Finding out what makes a couple tick, what they are about, and what they saw in each other that made them want to get married, is the most crucial part of a photographer's role. Because then you see the true depth of their feelings and of their personalities.
Somewhere as historic and beautiful as London, sometimes the challenge can be not to allow the backdrop to overwhelm the story of their love. This is why, when we set up on Millennium Bridge, with St Paul's Cathedral in the background, I chose to light them in contrast to their setting.
While at Bankside, outside London's Tate Modern gallery, the moment was far more important than anything going on around them.
And of course, that moment, isn't always about kissing and hugging, but about capturing the joy and fun that couples who are truly in love know. Here at the London Eye, one of the more challenging locations to photograph at when the light is going, we caught a couple of our favourite candid moments.
Having dragged poor Neal and Emily virtually the length of London's South Bank, it seemed only right that we should grab some last pictures on historic Westiminster Bridge.
And who could fail to feel the romance of Big Ben lit up behind you and reflecting across the Thames on a cold winter's evening?
And as our grand finale to a busy four hours of shooting, we braved the tourist crush of Westminster Bridge to film our iconic long exposure engagement portrait of Emily and Neal, featuring Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and even a fleeting red london bus!
I absolutely cannot wait to photograph Neal and Emily's wedding day at London's iconic Finsbury Town Hall in June. What a charming and beautiful couple!