It had been raining all week, in fact we had had floods just recently and it was almost guaranteed that the rain would continue all day on the day of Nicola & Francois wedding.
I arrived at the entrance to Oakfield Farms with the rain pelting down on my window shield. I sat in my car waiting for the rain to let up slightly for about 15 minutes before my impatience got the better of me and I braved the rain to make a mad dash to the reception hall. Luckily I hadn’t even made it 5 meters from my car when the rain miraculously stopped.
Expecting the rain to start up again just as quickly as it had stopped I went off on a mission to photograph the forest chapel and reception hall before racing to Nicola to check up on how she was doing for time getting ready.
While photographing Nicolas accessories I had a moment where I just flashed back through all the weddings I have photographed and how it is always amusing to me to see how the family and close friends of the bride always seem to get more nervous than the bride herself. Nicola and her family were no different, Nicola sat on the couch casually watching the goings on while her mom and gran ran around fretting about the dress, the decor still being done, the guys boutonnières, and every and any small thing they could find to fret about.
While all of this was happening, outside things were making progress too with the rain looking like it would allow us to get through the ceremony and hopefully the family photos and couple shoot before it continued. The brides room has this amazing skylight in it which not only lets you constantly watch what the weather is doing, but also allows the peacocks and peahens to peer in and see what human weddings are all about. Of course I was using the skylight to constantly check the weather and right up until we were ready to walk out the door the rain held off. We stepped out the door and BAM! The clouds opened up. At first it was just drizzle that I thought would go away so I stopped Nicola to do one or two more photos just outside her door where we would still be safely undercover. Unfortunately, it was now time to leave and the rain hadn’t let up – in fact, it was getting worse!! I ran down to the ceremony area through a constant downfall of rain. As I got there I was told there was a slight delay as they had to ensure the horses carriage had its cover on. Luckily I had found a tree which was mostly protecting me from the rain. But the longer I was standing there waiting the more the rain just bucketed down. Nicola arrived in style in the horse carriage and had to walk down to the chapel entrance using an umbrella. The moment things got underway my constant watch of the weather ceased as I gave my full attention to the couple and the wedding, however, I do remember looking outside about 10 minutes into the ceremony, only to be surprised to notice that once again the rain had stopped. Really?????? Could this weather not make up its mind??? There was even a minute or two where the sun peeped out from behind a cloud!!!
The ceremony was, of course, absolutely beautiful and went down smoothly and perfectly. After the couple had finished signing the register and were ready to walk outside I rushed out fully expecting to walk out and suddenly be caught in another ridiculous downpour, but the rain had thankfully decided to stay away for the rest of the day AND night.
Nicola really loves horses so obviously we got the horse and carriage to stick around for a bit to use it until the poor horse got too impatient with us – which didn’t take long – apparently horses don’t find weddings as interesting as humans or peacocks find them.
The reception went off beautifully, and I just have to tell you guys how amazing their first dance was. The love that these two share is just simply beautiful and so obvious to see.
Meeting and having the opportunity to chat to Nicolas dad has to have been a highlight for me – the guy is a great cyclist and also used to run and do triathlons! Oh and of course chatting to her aunt who is a farmers wide was great. I love how differently farmers live their lives, we were chatting about swimming the Midmar Mile and how to go about getting some training in – in anyone, but a farmers life, you would have to find a swimming pool, or if you are lucky find a dam you can train in. Farmers decide they need to train, therefore need a dam, therefore make a dam. Bam!
Night shoots are simply always one of my favorite parts of a wedding. Not only does it give the couple time to be alone together for a bit, but it is also loads of fun to shoot. For Nicola and Francois wedding I did two different types of night shoots, I don’t usually set up a shot inside the reception hall, but this night I just saw a shot and couldn’t resist and when Nicola and Francois said they were game to do it I simply had to! And it’s turned out to be one of my favorite shots of the entire wedding.
My compulsory bit about the cake:
Well first of all, just look at it! Like WOW!
So I was busy photographing the cake and probably drooling a bit when I heard someone say something about Francois mom making the cake along with plan and do all the decor for the reception hall and chapel. I presumed they must be mistaken and just meant that she organized the cake to be made and organize professional decor people to come in – but after meeting her, and having Nicola also tell me she did the cake and decor I realized it was true! This lady is truly amazing!!