Claire & James - Buxted Park Hotel
It's a real honour that on a few different occasions now I have been able to photograph the weddings of other wedding photographers. It is, of course, a privilege to be involved in anyone's wedding day but to be given that responsibility by one of your peers is exciting and also pretty daunting. In August of 2017, I had the pleasure of being able to photograph Claire and James's wedding day. Claire is a fantastic photographer based in Bexhill so I felt the pressure was on. The feedback that I got from Claire and James after their wedding day was truly humbling and it's my honour to be able to share some of those photos with you now.
I arrived at the particularly stunning Buxted Park Hotel to photograph Claire and her wedding parties preparations. My assistant for the day, also named Claire (which hopefully won't make this blog too confusing) arrived at the same time as me, as James the groom was getting ready at the hotel too.
It's easy to think that because a wedding photographer has so much experience of wedding days that when it comes to their own special day it will be a breeze. However speaking from my own experience, and from the look of anticipation, joy, and nerves on the face of Clare when I arrived it doesn't help! You could see Claire was feeling all the emotions on the morning of her wedding, and I did my best to try and keep her calm. The bridal suite at Buxted is a big beautiful room with lots of light and lots of space, so finding areas to photograph the details wasn't tricky. It also means that I wasn't getting in the way too much. I just love the shot below of Claire's daughter Maisie jumping to reach her dress, she was soooooo excited to be a Bridesmaid.
Claire, my assistant was down the hall with the boys. The guys were dressed in traditional top hat and tails. Something you don't see often these days but it certainly suited the grand venue that is Buxted Park. Something that the Bride had given us a heads up about was her gift to James. A lifelong Tottenham Hotspurs fan, he was delighted to receive a signed shirt wishing him well from none other than Harry Kane.
The ceremony took place under these grand pillars round the back of the hotel. A really stunning setting for a wedding. James has to be one of the most emotional grooms we have ever seen and it was lovely to see his reaction when he first laid eyes on his two children and his wife-to-be approaching the front of the ceremony. The emotion continued through the ceremony as the couple exchanged personal vows through glazed eyes and even their Mums, who were their chosen witnesses and standing next to me, were in floods of tears watching. Another things was you can definitely tell that Claire's children Maisie & Oliver are photographers kids. They smile as soon as you point a camera in their direction which makes my life very easy indeed!
After the ceremony, we took some group photos and couple photos in and around the grounds of the hotel. There are lots of great spots here, not difficult at all as a photographer to find locations. We collaborated on this with Russell and his assistant from Bride & Zoom. I do enjoy working alongside Videographers on the day. It's a chance to see how other people operate and set their shots up. It's also beneficial for the couple as they get multiple minds coming up with their shots together.
We were treated to not only the first dance, but two beautiful father-daughter dances too. Claire and her Dad, then James and Maisie. Again you could see that everyone in the room was feeling the emotions of the day. After the dances we stayed on longer than we usually would do. Claire and James had organised a huge fireworks display in the hotel grounds, and we were more than happy to stay on and take some extra shots.
Thank you to Claire, James, Maisie and Oliver for letting us be a part of their day! A truly wonderful family who I wish have all the happiness in the world! Congratulations you guys from all of us!
Dress: Tying the Knot Bridal
Make-up: Makeover Box
Hair: Buzz Bexhill
Videography:Bride & Zoom
Fireworks: Aurora Fireworks Ltd
12th Aug 2017