It is a first on the blog, the first time that the word ‘birth’ has come up in relation to a real wedding in France! Today I not only get to share with you the romantic wedding of Louise and Christophe at Chateau de Canon in Normandy, but a view from the other side of the lens with one photographers’ experience of juggling family with the responsibilities of wedding photography – Philip Stephenson!
Philip: “At 2am on Friday 25th May, my wife went into labor. I though, “Great, I’ll be there for the birth”. Though 24 hours of contractions later, still no baby.
Now 7am things started to move… push… pain… the lot! As I was due to leave for Louise and Christophe’s wedding at 8am, panic and stress were added to the list!
8am came, change of staff (for the 4th time) and still no baby; I made a call to Louise… “My wife is having a baby!” I think for most brides, receiving a call like that on the morning of their wedding would cause a panic… Louise was cool, calm and collected; “Just get here for the ceremony”, she said. I ran back into the delivery room now with two more hours in hand…
9:30am, she’s still pushing, still in pain and still no baby… but it’s getting closer.
9:50am, my wife keeps asking, “What’s the time?”. I’m replying, “We’re fine, plenty. Keep pushing.”
9:55am, everyone’s looking at the clock, I’m almost having a breakdown, my wife is running out of strength and my baby… ?
9:59 (and 30 seconds), “I can see the head”!
10:00 (00 seconds), I am a dad!
10:00 (01 seconds), me, my wife, doctors, midwives, everyone breaks down crying!
I stay for 5 minuets and try to take it all in before jumping into the car for the wedding. This was one of the hardest moments in my life!
I arrived in time to take some getting ready photos. We shot the portraits in the Chateau’s wonderful park and gardens before the ceremony in a stunningly beautiful wood.
It was fantastically hot weather, the ceremony took place outdoors in the wood by the river. The ambience was lovely, fresh cool summer air with flickering sunlight breaking through the trees. I was rather sleep deprived so anything could have seemed like a fairytale, though I know this really was magical!
The cocktails took place in blazing sun in front of the chateau.
Before heading inside for the reception dinner, the owners kindly took me to the chateau roof for a group photo. The welcoming for Louise and Christophe into the reception hall was amazing (sparklers, lights, guests cheering and standing on chairs).
Shortly after, I left to join my wife and baby at the hospital.
I’ve photographed a lot of wedding though I’ll never forget this one!”
So in another first, the first baby picture on the blog – introducing the bundle of joy who caused all of the drama Timothé at 1 day old.
Wow that is a blog of firsts – how cute is Timothé!