I’d been excited for this Buckhurst Park wedding photography gig from the moment we first sat down to discuss it. Firstly, I really liked Emily & Ed personally and it was also rather obvious that they’d photograph brilliantly. Secondly, they were planning an amazing day at an incredible spot that was entirely new to me. I love the freshness that comes with shooting in new locations. Thirdly, while Buckhurst Park is beautiful in its own right, Emily & Ed had chosen to hold their reception in a Papakåta Sperry tent, which for me, made this stunning wedding particularly special.
As you’ll see Buckhurst Park wedding photography is something of a breeze. The charming tiered gardens, designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens, are gorgeous and the views into the Ashdown Forest make for a compelling photographic canvas. Emily & Ed were also very keen to keep their photography as documentary as possible. They wanted as much time as possible to hang with family and friends and so aside from two 10 minute slots for portraits, we kept things very photojournalistic. As a photographer who basically lives for unstaged moments, this worked for me! Wed’d met up earlier in the year for a snowy engagement session in Richmond Park and so, from Emily & Ed’s point-of-view, the ‘posing for portraits’ part of getting married felt like it’d already been taken care of.
My wife and I had our own wedding in a Sperry tent back in 2016 but this was the first time I’d had the chance to ‘go to work’ in one. I’ve shot in hundreds of marquees, but there is something different about a Sperry.
Firstly, they are not made from vinyl, therefore there’s no weird smell. Instead they’re made from white sailcloth and this gives the whole thing a completely different mood. The sailcloth fabric feels classy yet hardworking and steeped in heritage. That might sound pretentious, but it’s apparent the first time you walk into a Sperry. The fabric breathes and therefore you feel protected from the elements, but part of them as well. There’s no sense of being hermetically sealed-in. There’s no lower internal ‘ceiling’ and therefore no claustrophobia. Instead the canopy rises majestically. Think giant white big top. Add in beautiful wooden support poles plus pennants fluttering from the top, removable sides and thick the woven matting and you have a marquee like no other. As you’ll see from the photographs, Emily & Ed’s Sperry at Buckhurst Park looked truly marvellous.
This wedding was fascinating to photography because it featured a glut of interesting ingredients. Kids’ running races marshalled by a refreshingly eccentric usher, incredible music (Emily is a classically trained Cellist and her musical friends did not disappoint), an impromptu visit from a tiny puppy, a sparkler send-off and (did I mention) the incredible tent?!
Anyway, time for some images. I really hope to be back for more Buckhurst Park wedding photography soon, until then, my thanks to Emily & Ed for having me and Sharon at Buckhurst Park for being both welcoming and helpful.
Want to see more of my documentary wedding photography? Why not check out Anna & Al’s beautiful barn wedding in Warwickshire.