It’s hard to know where to begin when I think back to Mel and Will’s unbelievable weekend of wedding celebrations at Chateau Lagorce near Bordeaux last summer. On this cold and dark February day, this trip to southern France on the hottest weekend on record in the country feels like a lifetime ago already. I do remember so well how excited I was that Mel and Will chose me to be their wedding photographer and asked me to travel to France to capture their celebrations for them. As someone who already feels hugely fortunate to earn a living doing something that I love, combining this with another passion (travel) really was living the dream.
Mel and Will are 2 of the loveliest people you could ever meet – hugely relaxed and with a wicked sense of fun and humour, they are wonderful humans to be around and inevitably so were their families and friends who made me feel so warmly welcomed throughout my time with them. I did laugh when I received a save the date card from Mel and Will – as if I’d forget! I had a countdown running on my phone for what I knew would be a wedding highlight not just for 2019 but unquestionably my photography career.
Mel’s mum is Vietnamese and a stunning Friday evening was spent on the terrace at Chateau Lagorce enjoying a traditional Vietnamese Tea Ceremony. Wearing such beautifully vibrant traditional Vietnamese dress and enjoying a relaxed and fun but poignant ceremony in such an incredible location was an experience I’ll never forget. I remember photographing a Hindu ceremony a few years ago and the colours and intricate series of rituals very much reminded me of that day. I know the traditional Christian ceremony so well now, it’s so refreshing to observe and document such a different cultural event.
The more traditional ‘British-style’ ceremony took place the next day down by the lake in the incredible ground of Chateau Lagorce. It was unbelievably hot so, soon after the ceremony and just a few formal photographs, most took off the suits and more formal wear and went into more relaxed dress! The afternoon was again spent on the most stunning terrace enjoying some shade and cold champagne. The champagne fountain looked so good, I could have dived right in! After some quite brilliant speeches we managed a few portraits amongst the candles on the steps of the chateau as the sun set on the most magical wedding day. An energetic first dance under the festoon lights closely followed by a surprise fireworks display, organised in secret by Will, signalled the start of an epic party! I firmly believe that some of the very best party animals on planet earth wear uniforms! Armed forces, Police and in this case the NHS really do know how to let their hair down. I had so much fun on that very sweaty dance floor I ended up forgetting the time and staying until the middle of the night! With a very short drive back to where I was staying and no family to head home to, it was never a problem!
Anyway, I’ll let some images hopefully finish painting the picture of a wonderful Bordeaux wedding. I know I’m not really able to call myself a Destination Wedding Photographer just yet but I would so love to repeat this experience. I am so fortunate to be off to Tuscany this summer for another wedding day and absolutely cannot wait! I’m just hoping that it’s perhaps not the hottest day in Italy’s history!