When I met these two for the first time and learnt about the day they had planned… My first thought; “This will be different!” My second thought; “Going to need lots of sun cream.” And the

third: This is going to be very cool!” A cricket pitch, in-between the South Downs and the sea, slip ‘n’ slide, fish & chips, and a silent disco. Three weddings firsts for me all on the same day.

Harriet + Luke

Rodmell Lewes Wedding

They ran out of bubble-bath

I began the day, taking a few photos of Luke, our Groom and Hero of the story, if this was a fairytale. Actually, if this was a fairytale, I think Harriet might have been the hero, as a little

later in the day it became quite evident, her muscles were better than Luke’s (Sorry Luke!). This however was (Apologies again Luke (Oh dear!)), the smartest he looked all day (You’ll have

seen why above). There had been discussions about possible shorts; fortunately this was probably in jest and Luke and his groomsmen, having spent the night in the field prior, opted for

smart, stylish and very cool. The smiles appeared a little intermittent however, as Luke’s nerves played their game with him. It’s always nice to see though, how important these moments

are to people - Nerves equal anticipation and show how much meaning there is in what’s about to happen to someone!

Now something happened I don’t see that often… The Bridesmaids practiced their walks. Superb! This happened briefly before the most excited and least nervous Bride I have ever

photographed arrived… In style? Of course! In Mum’s Suzuki! What else?!… and across some ground, you’d be hard pressed to describe in any way other than “lumpy”. Wow! Harriet

was so full of life, laughter and excitement. Although to be fair, that’s probably how every Bride feels when they first see their Photographer, right!? :-) Sometimes you’re torn as

just a person in the moment… You need to click away, as per the role; But you also just want to stop and appreciate what is in front of you. This was one stunning and happy bride!

The only nerves I saw from Harriet at all during the day were just before she made her way into their Ceremony venue, a giant Marquee - Complete with Crèche at the back. These two

had thought of everything! Everyone had taken their seats… which I have to say, was a warm place to be! (My assistant almost passed out from heatstroke. It was actually the hottest day

of the year!). It really was a lovely ceremony (And nope, I don’t say that every time); and one filled with fun, laughter and plenty of love; and for a moment there, I thought the Groom had

left… Awkward! But no, he returned with a towel, to a little laughter, a light applause, and a tangible jealousy from the now quite toastie tented room full of guests.

The group photos were, without doubt, the smoothest I have ever been a part of (Photographer or guest!). It felt as if it had all been rehearsed. It still to this day makes me nervous that

I maybe forgot something. They’re never that easy! Gone were the usual “wombling off guests” (You know who you are!); Plus we had loads of youngsters there… none of which took the

chance to reject the slightly more formal proceedings taking place around them, as is often the case. I did almost fall off a couple of hey bales… but I don’t think anyone noticed.

The Bride & Groom, now Man & Wife and I, then popped off for a “Grand Tour” of the grounds, stopping off under trees, by gates, against hedges and fences, on hey bales, and also

borrowing a local farmers field for the “must have” wheat field moments that make for such great wedding couple photos (Thank you Mr or Mrs or Miss Farmer). Harriet & Luke then took

a few moments to enjoy a picnic laid on for them by friends and family. I ordered the retreat of my lenses at this point, and readied myself for what was to come… Slip ‘n’ slide.

A very long sheet of… something black and slippery; A hose filled with water; and plenty of, I think it was bubble bath… and they were off!. The guests didn’t hold back; well, some

maintained a dignified distance, but the Groom certainly didn’t, who changed (Stripped is more precise), and threw himself down the thing, much to the amusement of his new wife, who

had absolutely no intention of ruining her dress or even changing out of it. Highlights; A giant Gladiator style race through other guests with inflatable's, used to, let’s go with “slow down”

the participants. Although “flatten” might have been more accurate. And the Vicar? Yep, he threw himself down it also. Dog collar and all. Superb!

Exuberance gave way to quiet… very quite in-fact, as headphones were donned for the silent disco. Now, to the non-user / observer, this is very much the spectator sport. People singing

and dancing… to seemingly nothing, that you can hear anyway! I thought there was some ropey singing going on to begin with - but listeners could choose their channel; So they weren’t

all listening, dancing and singing along to the same thing. The light then faded, and it was time to leave them all to it; But not before stealing the Bride & Groom away for one last

mini-shoot, as we made use of the very last light of the day, which was all orangey, pink and glowy.

A day the Bride & Groom will never forget… and neither will I!


“A photographer must possess and retain the receptive faculties of a child who watches the world for the first time.” ― Bill Brandt

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