There is no set time to cut the cake – it seems to take place at different times according to the couple. However, in terms of photographing this event it can prove to be one of the more difficult shoots of the day. It is not unusual for the cake to be tucked away in a corner with very little room available for the couple to actually cut the cake and even less room for the photographer. For those that are brave enough you could attempt to move the table with the cake to a more suitable location but I have never had the nerve to do this – I don’t touch the cake – if somebody is going to throw the cake on the floor it’s not going to be me.
So often it is a matter of photographing the cutting of the cake where you find it but even so there are a number of things to bear in mind when you photograph the cutting of the cake.
I tend not to get too hung up on the which hand goes where on the knife but I do make sure that the brides ring hand is last on the knife so that her ring is shown on the photograph.
If there is room available I try and move around the bride and groom as they cut the cake to provide some alternative angles for this shot. I will also try and capture a few close ups of the hands (and rings) as the couple ‘cut the cake’.
The cake cutting is a popular shot for the guests to take so be aware of this and allow the guests in to take their shots after you have finished. Don’t let this opportunity pass though – photographing the guests, photographing the couple can make a great image.
Also be aware that cakes now come in all sorts of shapes and sizes – tiered fairy cakes are currently popular. I have a lot of ‘cake cutting’ stories but my favourite is probably the one pictured above where the couple built a mini mountain of profiteroles and fairy cakes and then proceeded to pour white and milk chocolate over the whole lot from a couple of watering cans – great fun!