Gosfield Hall Wedding Photography - Gemma and Rees
Something not a lot of people know about me is I love cars. I would love to drive a flash car. My dream cars are the Aston Martin DB9, Pergani Zonda and the Mini Cooper. However I tootle around in a bashed in Hyundai i10. Who says wedding photographers are rolling in money and drive flash cars?? So when I'm at a wedding and cars feature I'm in my element. One wedding comes to mind from back in 2017 at Top Meadows Golf Club where the wedding car was the General Lee. You know......the car from Dukes of Hazard. And it was as a result of the shots I took of that wedding car that I was contacted by Gemma. Her and Rees were getting married at Gosfield Hall in Essex and love cars. Seeing my General Lee shots, they knew I was the right photographer for them. More on cars later. Here's Gemma and Rees' Gosfield Hall Wedding Photography and the story of their day.
I was absolutely buzzing on the morning of the wedding. It was my first "double header" weekend since the relaxing of covid restrictions. It had been a few years since the last one and was a signal that things were starting to get back to normal and that after a tough couple of years business was picking up. The day before I'd had a 20 minute drive. Today, a little long. 2 hours in the sun with tunes-a-plenty! I drove down the drive way at Gosfield Hall and was greeted by the stunning 16th Century hall. This was regal! I was met by Tara and the wedding team as I entered and then got a quick tour of where everything was happening to help me get my bearings. I was completely gobsmacked. And then I headed into the Queen's Gallery where the guys from JF Styling were setting up. White floor, clear pedestals with flower arrangements on and two white wisteria trees framing the bottom of the aisle where the certificates would be signed and witnessed. It was like something from a Dior shoot!
Up in the Rococo Suite Gemma was getting her hair done whilst her bridesmaids steamed their dresses and sipped bubbly. If I thought the Queen's Gallery was stylish I was in for a field day in the Rococo. Now this WAS Dioresque! Whites, golds, marble and mirrors. The creative juices were oozing!!! The atmosphere was amazing, the music was on and everyone was chilled.
Out in the car park, there was a growling noise. Rees had arrived in his Dodge Ram pick up! What a noise it made. It was massive too!! There were other lovely cars there too including a couple of AMG Mercedes. Later in the day the owners of those would be seen with bonnets up comparing engines. These cars would form the backdrop of some of the pictures later. But I had to remember I was there to shoot a wedding and NOT drool at cars!
I spent some time exploring the grounds. After a misty start this was turning into a gorgeous sunny day. Was there enough hours in the day to capture everything I had in mind in these grounds???!!
Upstairs again, and Gemma was now in her dress. The little flower girls practiced their walking for the ceremony and the bridesmaids gushed over Gemma as they walked into the suite to see her for the first time. Outside on the terrace below the suite windows some guests were sat enjoying a pre-ceremony drink in the sun. That was soon cut short when they were ushered up to the Queen's Gallery. Taking their seats, they shouted encouragement to Rees who now was looking a little nervous. Rubbing his hands, he took his place and waited for his bride to make her entrance. And what an entrance!!
Now, nerves are a funny thing. They impact on people in many different ways. Today they resulted in a constant fit of giggles. Gemma had to cover her mouth as she kept fighting back the giggles and exchanged vows with Rees.
After vows and rings were exchanged the newlyweds headed downstairs to enjoy some drinks in the sunshine and welcome their family and friends. We had a bit of a window to play with between the ceremony and the wedding breakfast in the Ballroom so there was no rush to get the group pictures done that they wanted. But once they were done I whisked Gemma and Rees away for a bit of peace and quiet in the courtyard and catch a few valuable moments together uninterrupted. These moments are important.
Before long everyone was escorted up to the Ballroom ready for the meal and the speeches. I have to say the food was stunning!!! I could have done with a snooze on the sofa I was sitting on but I had the speeches to capture. These were short and sweet and meant that everyone could have a bit longer to stretch their legs before the evening's fun began.
We lined some of the cars up in the car park to get some shots. When I was booked for the wedding Rees had a "General Lee" but sold it. That would have been an amazing set of pictures however the cars on display today were epic. We were getting a bit lost in it all when one of the guests came over to remind the three of us that the rest of the guests were waiting for us so we could get a shot of everyone in the evening sunlight.
The beauty of Gosfield Hall is the hidden dance floor set at the back of the bar. A cool little escape where you can let loose and cut some shapes into the evening. And that is exactly what everyone did.
What a day!!! The first day of summer so the sun was setting a little later than the day before. I jumped into my little car and tootled off back across the Dartford Bridge to Kent with tunes banging imagining I was driving an Aston DB9. Might need to book myself a driving experience sometime soon to indulge in my car fantasy!