Saturday 27 May started out as a rainy day but a quick check of the weather suggested it would clear. And just as predicted Ollie and Demi avoided the rain and clouds and the sun shone for their special day. An intimate and friendly family affair started at their local Hellingly Church. Demi arrived in style in an Audi A5 with her bridesmaids, her sister and soon to be sister in law. The bride’s mum met them outside and walked her down the aisle to a nervously waiting Ollie. The ceremony was beautifully relaxed with a reading from the vicar’s wife.
Following the ceremony there was just a little time to get some group photos and a few select images of Ollie and Demi on their own (including a selfie which Ollie couldn’t resist using my camera for!) before making our way to Herstmonceux Village Hall, which the bride and groom had styled and decorated themselves in beautifully bright blue and yellow (I may detect a Chelsea theme for a Chelsea fan?) with planted sunflower seeds given to each guest as a favour.
My time with Ollie and Demi finished with speeches from the father of the bride, the best man, the groom’s sister and the groom and I left the newlywed couple to enjoy their evening with their family and friends.
Congratulations Mr and Mrs Agate.
Natalie and Ben got married at Hellingly Church on 4 September 2009 and daughter Lottie came along the following year. On 14 May 2017 my wife and I met with Lottie, now 6 years old, and her mum and dad for a special princess day at the same church and Lottie was so excited to be putting mummy’s wedding dress on! With a little bit of arrangement by my wife, and a lot of bull dog grips, Lottie was wearing this beautiful strapless layered gown and doing a tap dance to find her feet out of the bottom. Mum brought along her hair slide, veil and shoes to complete the recreation. Lottie was a pro and the perfect model, relishing in every moment of this dress up experience.
The weather was kind to us, if just a little windy, with the veil trying to take off through the beautiful churchyard and Lottie was fantastic, running through the grounds for each pose I asked her to take, even when she so desperately needed a wild wee! Finally we took a look inside for the all important alter images, in the exact place her mum and dad exchanged their vows eight years ago.
On Bank Holiday Monday I met Alex, Vickie, Amelia and Oliver for an early morning walk through the Bluebell Wood. This was the first time I had actually contacted a client wanting to take their picture instead of the other way around. I learnt about this family via Facebook and the fundraising that they are doing. In May 2016 Oliver was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder and sensory processing disorder. Oliver is non-verbal and struggles with daily tasks we all do without thinking. He only has one or two words he can use but these words can change. The family have found a charity called Autism Life Dogs who train dogs to help and guide those suffering with autism, reduce anxiety and give a friend for life. In order to have one of these dogs for Oliver the family need to raise £6,000!
I contacted Vickie to offer my help and I offered to do a family shoot for her. Vickie told me that as much as they have lots of pictures of Oliver, generally they include an iPad or phone where they are trying to hold his attention. Or a scrunched up shirt where they are trying to keep him still! So the opportunity to have some professional family photos was appealing. We weren’t sure how Oliver would take to having his picture taken, as he did not know me. However, the Arlington Bluebell Walk allowed us to go in early on Monday before opening to ensure that the woods were quiet and Oliver would not feel overwhelmed. Upon meeting the family Oliver and Amelia were so happy and excited to explore they ran off into the woods and I was able to follow along capturing a lot of natural, relaxed, candid moments between brother and sister as they had some adventures. Oliver was quite comfortable with me and we were able to stop every now and then to capture some lovely family pictures and Vickie was pleasantly surprised to find that I caught Oliver actually looking at the camera as well as some very tender moments between the family. It was an absolute pleasure to meet such a lovely family and I feel very privileged to have been able to capture some rare images for the family.
Chris and Rea kicked off the Bluebell season with a lovely Saturday morning exploration of the Arlington Bluebell Walk. This is my third shoot with the Harper family having first met them when Murphie was only 10 months old during a seaside shoot with her cousins. Since then we have done a very Christmassy studio shoot and progressed to a walk through these beautiful flowers. It has been a pleasure to watch Murphie grow and capture her changes as she’s learnt to walk. She is such a daddy’s girl, loves her food and is a stubborn little monkey when it comes to sitting still and smiling for a family photo. There are much more important things to be doing!
On Sunday 19 February I met with the Bond family for a lovely crisp walk in the sunshine and a play in the park. Dougie brought along his favourite toy Bun Bun who is as much a part of the family as anyone and Lottie was quite the little poser for me. She’s so much like her mum and dad! Our local Hampden Park makes for a wonderful place to explore and the squirrels are always friendly and up for some snacks! You just need a little patience and a little bit of quiet…
James and Becky chose the beautiful George Bell House in Chichester for their wedding
James and Becky chose the beautiful George Bell House in Chichester for their wedding. It wasn’t quite the perfect summer’s day as we had to dodge the thunderous downpours and we could only briefly enjoy the cathedral ground.s but they did manage a perfect outdoor ceremony in the garden. The day started for the groomsmen in Benjamin James Hair Vision for an old school wet shave and male pampering whilst the bride made the most of George Bell House’s facilities. It was a casual and laid back affair and finished off with some crazy dancing to the couple’s favourite music…