I first heard from Stacey and Kal, in December last year, enquiring about wedding photography for their intimate civil ceremony at Cleeve House, Melksham, in May this year. Having worked in the teaching profession before becoming a photographer, as soon as I heard that they were both teachers I suspected that they would have bucket loads of personality...and I wasn't wrong!
I asked how they had met and they told me that they had both been experienced in the art of longterm relationships, and that love wasn't something they were looking for when they found themselves as housemates, during their teaching days in Essex (think Teachers meets This Life). Love found them nevertheless and, by the sounds of it, following their hearts was the best decision they could of made, as they have been inseparable ever since.
We talked on the phone like old friends - about work, life, the amazing places they've travelled to, the wedding day, Stacey's worries about being photographed (what woman doesn't feel even the slightest bit paranoid having a camera pointed at them?!) and their exciting plans for the future. Both Stacey and Kal are keen amateur photographers, so we also discussed our likes (and dislikes) about wedding photography, and photography in general, and the natural, reportage photography they would like for their wedding, to match the intimacy of the day.
After months of emails and texts, getting to know each other and receiving updates on hair and dress details (thanks Stacey, these have cheered me up on cold, winter days when I've been staring out of my office window!) it was finally time for our engagement photography session in Wiltshire. I was excited and nervous, in equal measure, given that this was the first time we would meet! I packed the car up though and drove with my lovely friend Tracey, from Tracey Ann make up, and we headed off for a girls' work day out into the beautiful countryside of Westbury.
Now, when you turn up to a clients' house 30 minutes early, at 9am, you can't always be sure that they will be overly happy to see you! But they both welcomed us with (pyjamas wearing) open arms, handed us a cuppa, and it felt like we had popped round to see old friends for a catch up! After having a girly chinwag, whilst Stacey had her make up trial, we headed off to Cleeve House in Melksham (which is just so beautiful), and enjoyed a relaxed and fun engagement session, photographing them just the way they are - playful, gentle and in completely in love.
I can't wait to photograph the wedding day next month and I'm delighted to have the honour of being part of such a special day for two really quite remarkable people - thank you.