Katy Durn is a documentary-style wedding photographer based across Australia and England, shooting destination weddings all year round. With over ten years photography experience and many years working in the wedding industry, Katy Durn combines her experience with your authentic love to create intimate, honest and timeless wedding imagery.
What would you like couples to know about you?
I grew up in a small village in central England and my Dad was a hobbyist photographer. I remember on family holidays, he would pull the car over on the side of the road, jump out with his camera to snap away at the landscape. In 2014 I flew from England to Australia with nothing but a backpack and a camera, and after travelling for a while, photography quickly became my passion. I finished photography school and began shooting weddings in 2019, and I've never found a job more suited to my personality. In life I put a lot of emphasis on authenticity, deep connections, nurturing relationships, creativity and real emotion, and shooting weddings allows me to bring all these things into play. I strongly believe that making memories, but also preserving them is one of the most important things you can do in life. I'm deeply sentimental and nostalgic, and my approach towards you and your day is very personable.
Where are you based?
I am based in Adelaide, Australia for the most part of the year, and I spend roughly three months every summer visiting my family in England and shooting weddings across Europe.
Do you travel for weddings?
Yes! I travel all year round, throughout Australia, Europe and worldwide for destination weddings.
How would you describe your style?
Documentary-style with an editorial touch. I emphasise feelings of romance, joy, calm, elegance and nostalgia however, I also focus on bringing out carefree and fun energy in my couples shoots. I want my wedding images to feel like a piece of artwork, a little cinematic, but effortless and subtle in the execution. I aim for my images to be honest and true in their representation of each couple, and to signify the real connection they share. I capture most of the wedding day in a documentary style way, like a fly on the wall, integrating myself with your guests to get those natural reactions and authentic feelings. I want my photos to transport you back to how your wedding day really felt. My editing style is clean and true to life, with the colours being soft and slightly muted. I love the tones of film and I also love black and white.
What is your most memorable career moment?
Shooting an elopement at A Little White Chapel in Vegas. We got ready at the Palazzo Hotel, took photos in the casino, tied the knot at the chapel, had pizza for dinner and drove out to the desert for portraits in The Valley of Fire - it was epic. Being flown anywhere to shoot a wedding is a true honour and I feel really lucky to be able to travel with my work.
What inspires you?
I get a lot of inspiration from cinema and really anything that has a mood or vibe to it. I love ambient light, whether it be from candles lining the table, festoon lights or a chandelier overhead. Textures that give a feeling of romance when the light hits them. Anything that is aesthetically beautiful, and minimal in its design. Plus anything that gives a fun, glamorous and feminine feeling - think bows, champagne, a mini dress, kisses in the hotel elevator, and the sparkling lights of the Eiffel Tower.
What motivates you to do what you do?
I have a very natural drive when it comes to shooting weddings, with each new couple I meet and hearing about their unique wedding vision. That gives me a lot of inspiration. I'm always striving to try new things, elevate my work and capture each wedding day in a way that represents how it truly felt on the day.
How would you describe your working style?
Calm and relaxed in my physical presence, but I'm always keeping my eyes out for new angles and anticipating a moment that's about to happen. I'm looking for magical pockets of light and backdrops that are going to elevate the scene and story. I approach weddings from a storytelling perspective, capturing the beginning, middle, end and everything in between. When I'm not taking a photo on your wedding day, I'll probably be fixing your dress, tidying a space, or having a chat with your parents or grandparents (because I know it's a big day for them too!).
Do you shoot digitally, on film or both?
I shoot on both digital and 35mm film.
Do you have custom packages according to individual needs?
I offer a standard base package for full day coverage, but I often create custom packages depending on each of my couple's exact needs. I offer additional hours and days of coverage, extra photographers, 35mm film, prints & fine art wedding albums.
Where would you love to travel to for work?
Truly anywhere. In my career so far, I have covered weddings in Australia, England, Ireland, India, New Zealand and Italy, and I would love to keep adding to this list. I am deeply inspired by culture, and how weddings are celebrated differently depending on tradition, religion and local cuisine. I especially love any place with a beautiful city or epic landscape, think Iceland, New York, Yosemite, Amalfi, Queenstown, Paris.
Who is your dream client?
Couples who are relaxed, madly in love and just want to have a beautiful celebration with their nearest and dearest. Those wanting to be fully present on their wedding day, who will plan the details meticulously in the lead up, but want to let go once the day comes around.
What is your advice to couples getting married?
Your wedding day is quite possibly the only opportunity in your life where you will have all your favourite people in one room at the same time. Time will be your most scarce resource and so make an event of it. You may have friends and family flying in from all over the world who you haven't seen for years. Your wedding day itself goes by quickly and so I'd advise hosting a welcome party to catch up with everyone the day before in a more relaxed setting, and have a next-day recovery brunch to reminisce. Knowing you have that extra time with your loved ones will take the pressure off your actual wedding day, allowing you to be more present with each other.