It's not often you get asked to shoot a Japanese fusion wedding up in the Brecon Beacons. So, when Jerome and Marié (that's Mari-ay, not Marieeee) asked us to capture their day among the mountains, it was an obvious yes!
We'd met up with these guys for a drink 6 weeks before their big day, and straight away we hit it off. I hate describing couples as cute as it often seems patronising, but I'm struggling to find a better word which encapsulates how they were with each other. They're just so damn adorable! With a quirky sense of humour and infectious energy, we knew their wedding would be a proper laugh.
Building a rapport with your couples is more than half the work; if we're not clicking then it can make the whole day that much more difficult for all parties involved. But these guys were so friendly and enthusiastic, we hit it off immediately and very quickly laid down the groundwork for capturing their special day.
Before I continue, I should mention that throughout everything you read, LJ was 33 weeks pregnant... got it? Good! Back to the story...
Jerome and Marié had picked a rustic barn conversion for their ceremony, Barn at Brynich, just outside Brecon. Inside the barn the beams were adorned with many hand-folded origami cranes, which is a tradition in Japanese weddings - and just plain cool.
It was a dry day - one of the three we get in Wales - and the views of the mountains were truly stunning. A good start.
It's safe to say, we were not prepared for the colour-fest that was her wedding dress. Marié wore a traditional Japanese wedding robe for the ceremony, which was made up of layers, and layers, and layers... and layers of clothing. It was fitted by a Japanese woman who was apparently one of 3 people in the UK who is able to fit these outfits properly. The outer robe was truly something to behold. Patterned with colourful flowers, cranes and many symbols filled with ancient meaning. Stunning doesn't quite cover it.
Over in the boys camp, Jerome was also wearing traditional Japanese garb, although I think the boys got off light - literally! Made up of only a couple of layers of black and white robes, his outfit made him look like a distinguished gentleman. Pure class!
After an emotional ceremony and a quirky photoshoot with the wedding party, it was time to change and put on the hiking boots - figuratively speaking. It would be a shame to have your wedding in the shadow of Pen-Y-Fan and not get at least a few snaps up there. This is where Jerome and Marié showed us their strength of character. Despite chilly conditions and a small hike - although no hike is small in heels - these guys allowed us to capture some of our all time favourite shots. The lighting, the scenery, the couple - it was magic!
We treated the couple to a lovely sunset drive back down the mountain, after which they treated everyone to a killer performance on the electric guitar and ridiculously cool keytar, half way through their first dance.
Thank you Jerome and Marié for allowing us to capture your day. If there's one bit of advice I would pass on to you, it's this: don't go hiking when you're 33 weeks pregnant!