Larmer Tree Wedding
I am a big fan of stripping things back, keeping things simple and concentrating on the essence of a picture – with weddings this surely has to be about the people. How a photographer composes and creates pictures is often dictated by the emotive value of what is in front of them. This is particularly noticeable on those small weddings – a handful of key people, where observing them as individuals rather than as clusters of friends and family on a greater scale, enables a photographer to understand better the value of the day to them and the relationships involved. There is a journey of emotions that a photographer witnesses in the day such as waves of expectation, contemplation, euphoria, “wow, we can now breathe” and I am always wanting everything to slow down and for the day to be absorbed – it really does just go too quickly.
Follwoing their engagement at Longleat, Vanessa and Ayman fell in love with the elegance and unique landscape of the Larmer Tree Gardens and although they had concerns (as a I think most do) that the amazing weather may change, we were swathed in the heat of the warmest day of the year.
I was delighted to be invited to photograph their wedding at the Larmer Tree Gardens in Wiltshire – somewhere I have worked for many years and although am familiar with the grounds, it never fails to show new light and shapes through the natural regrowth or something being exposed through a changing season. That’s a relief, and kind of keeps me on my toes looking for something new! Vanessa and Ayman chose to keep their celebrations simple but with taste and small embellishments which made the day so personal to them. The dress was the epitome of elegance, a 50’s Hepburn inspired gown from LouLou Bridal, dream to photograph, and flattering to say the least. I used the shape to emulate the shape of the Tollard Royal bell that was stolen a few years ago from this spot. We seemed to be here at the right time with a shaft of warmth illuminating the wooded area that is normally so dark. The number of guests was kept to a handful of key people in Vanessa and Ayman’s lives including their beautfiul daughter Ava, Carys who is 14 and Vanessa’s niece Tilly as bridesmaids. By keeping the day small, enabled them to have the ultimate intimate wedding before a ‘minimoon’ at Lucknam Park.
Vanessa and Ayman allowed me to work around them, whilst sometimes dipping a toe into something more classical, utilising the architecture of the location and gardens. I am always conscious of couples being taken away from their guests for too long – yet a photographer needs that little nugget of time to get something special, it is how I like to work, getting that balance between being unobtrusive and efficiently getting something which very much stamps my own style within it.