Jenn & Charlie are one of those couples that make my job extremely rewarding. They are absolutely lovely people and working with them was a huge pleasure from beginning to end. Their spring wedding at Farnham Castle was both beautiful and incredibly down to earth – a combination I’m particularly fond of. I’d got together with Jenn & Charlie a few months prior for a pre-wedding session in the crisp air of late November. They were immediately great fun to photograph. Here’s a quick preview of that spectacular day at Windsor Great Park, I’ll be posting a full blog soon so keep an eye out. After our fantastic day in the winter sun, I was very excited to see Jenn & Charlie at Farnham Castle for the main event!
The day began by visiting Charlie and the boys at the lovely 1 Park Row B&B in central Farnham. I love photographing a relaxed breakfast because it completely lacks artifice. It’s just folks sitting around, having a coffee, eating good food and telling stories. This might sound plain and uneventful, but I see it as a huge photographic opportunity because of that very unguardedness. After spending a bit of time with the gents I headed up the hill to catch up with Jenn and her girls in the Gatehouse. This was my first spring wedding at Farnham Castle and, although it was only early March, the cherry blossom in the trees and warm sun on the flag stones left no doubt that winter was well and truly vanquished. Jenn’s friend Katie-Jane Whitlock looked after all things bridal hair. Katie-Jane is an amazing combo of utter chill and infectious laugh that’s really hard not to love. She kept everything on schedule, made everyone look incroyable and ensured the morning remained 100% relaxed. Recommended!
Jenn got into her dress in the downstairs room of the Gatehouse and I particularly love the shots of her niece looking up to her. She’s only little, but there’s wonder in those eyes! These are the pictures that I’m really looking for. The slightly less obvious moment, the angle that tells a different story and, hopefully, images that will come to have a whole collection of meanings, to different people, though the generations. Once everyone was ready, Jenn called her Dad in – which is always a really moving moment – before we stepped out into glorious sunshine and made the short walk across to the Lantern Hall.
A spring wedding at Farnham castle deserves good flowers. As you’ll see in the photographs, the floristry was out of this world. I loved the pinky-red hues in Jenn’s bouquet and the way it chimed with the golden ribbon. Bloody sumptuous. Well done to the fantastic team from Moutan – amazing job! The Lantern Hall was dressed in royal purple, to match the bridesmaids’ dresses, and the window embrasures were filled with more stunning blooms that mirrored the girls’ flowers. Show time! Jenn’s little niece was her flower girl and with some encouragement from Mum behind and Dad at the far end of the aisle, she got things underway in epically cute fashion while everyone looked on and practised being collectively broody! There’s something I particularly love about shooting bridal entrances in the Lantern Hall. The light is always great and there’s some nice opportunities for interesting framing. Jenn & Charlie also had an artist live-paint (if that’s the term) their ceremony. Very cool and not something I’d seen before.
Charlie & Jenn looked so thrilled to be getting married. That might sound blindingly obvious, but when it’s as self-evident as this it’s hard not to find it utterly charming. I’ve got hundreds of weddings under my belt and yet there are still times when I have a lump in my throat! After much grinning, smiling (not to mention a few formalities) Charlie & Jenn made their exit as newlyweds. One of my favourite features of Farnham Castle weddings is confetti on the Foxes steps. Jenn & Charlie’s guests did not disappoint! The photographs from the confetti barrage are one my best-loved sequences from the entire day. Around about this point the weather decided to remind us that we were in England. Nothing too drastic, but a short sharp shower that meant we had to dive back inside for the group photographs. Thankfully it didn’t last long. When we stepped out onto the Great Lawn an hour later for a few portraits the drops had finished falling.
Jenn & Charlie first met in Australia while Charlie was taking part in the Clipper Round-the-World race. If you’re not familiar, check it out as it sounds absolutely incredible. Their friends made a beautiful model of the Clipper 70 yacht and it took pride of place in the Great Hall. As you can imagine, given the nature of how they met, Jenn & Charlie are pretty adventurous and exciting people. Their lives are full of great stories and the speeches perfectly reflected that. Charlie’s ushers were his three brothers and, alongside Best Man Del and MC Simon, these guys had the best banter and comic hilarity imaginable. Jenn’s bridesmaids were her sisters, Katie & Steff, and they were champs. Always on hand when Jenn needed them and unceasingly smiley and fun to hang out with.
Jenn & Charlie chose not to have a first dance, instead deciding that as good hosts, the decent thing would be to let everyone hit the dancefloor simultaneously. One of the reasons I stick around, as standard, until midnight is because sometimes great moments happen late in the evening. So it was here. The dancefloor was busy all night, but with the final hour of the evening underway, the ‘now or never’ vibe took hold. Charlie found himself hoisted aloft for an impromptu crowd surf before he and Jenn saved the best till last with a truly memorable final dance. In short, shooting Jenn & Charlie’s spring wedding at Farnham Castle was an absolute blast – thanks for having me guys!
*If you’re after suppliers details, you’ll find them at the foot of this post, after the photographs.