In April 2011, Jade liked my Facebook page, she messaged me soon after enquiring about my wooden hearts. She soon ordered one with her beautiful warmblood mare on the front, Tessa. Little did I know that we’d become great friends! I feel like I’ve “known” Jade a long time, we’ve never actually met during this time, until this Monday!
Jade has been a fantastic customer over the years ordering everything from printed hoodies to graphite pencil portraits of her lovely doggies: Sweep and Molly. So, when she asked if anyone would be able to photograph her, Tessa and her husband Adam, I agreed! Initially, I’d said no on a previous occasion as the 3 hour trip up to Derby would be quite a trek to fit in twice one day, along with a shoot. We managed to put together a few ideas and made it work!
So, on Monday morning I woke up to my alarm at 6.15, headed to the yard, mucked and turned out Dolly, dashed home, grabbed my bag and plenty of food and took the train up to Derby! I passed the time exchanging exciting text messages between Jade who was busy getting Tessa ready as well as reading the latest edition of the Animal Therapy Media magazine.
Adam and Jade were married on April 23rd this year – I’d been excitedly following their updates leading up to the big day! I love it when my customers become my friends – it makes me appreciate my job more and more! Jade met Adam in 2011 when he came to tile her parents’ house, a few years later, in 2013, he proposed to her in Canada, in the Rocky Mountains! Adam told me the story of how it was all planned, with Ste, Jade’s brother to be there on the platform to take some photographs when he “popped the question.” After waiting for other tourists to leave, so it was just the two of them together, Ste had walked away and missed the moment!
Jade has owned Tessa 8 years now – she couldn’t have Tessa there on her big day so the shoot was designed to capture photographs of all of them together, including Sandy their 2 year old rescue spaniel, who they’ve owned for about 6 months now!
Arriving at Derby station, Adam was there waiting to pick me up. A short journey took us back to the yard where Jade was busy loading up the trailer. On arrival, Jade bought out a big box of cakes! *Haha you know me too well!* I also got to meet Jade’s parents too. We began with some black background shots of Tessa in the stables, then, whilst Jade was bandaging up Tessa, Adam and I headed out to one of the fields to get some photos Sandy amongst the buttercups. We all jumped in the cars and had a good chat in the car – Jade had been and found us a beautiful location a short trailers journey away. On arrival, Adam and I went for a look around to seek out some locations, particularly shaded areas as it was such a hot day; 27 degrees in fact!
Jade looked absolutely stunning in her dress! They even found a little flower band for the “chief bridesmaid” of the day – Sandy. Armed with a bucket of treats, confetti and the beautiful horse shoe Jade made for her wedding day, we headed up to our first spot. Jade bought along a step ladder so she could get up on to Tessa easily as her underskirt wasn’t very forgiving.
For those of you who don’t know, Jade paints and personalises beautiful horse shoes for many events, occasions or even those in memory of a beloved horse. So, it was particularly important to make sure the shoe Jade made for their wedding day was included in the shots.
Tessa was a bit of a madam when it came to putting her ears forward but she was so relaxed in new surroundings and Jade’s dress draped across her quarters. I’m not many horses would have been as calm as she was. Jade’s parents helped keep Tessa’s attention with a big bucket of treats. Adam and Jade were so easy to work with, following my instructions on how to position their hands and where to look.
When it came to getting Sandy’s attention, we had no problem at all! She is mad about sticks, so wherever her stick was placed, either in Adam’s hands, in my lap or on top of my head - she was looking. She sat so beautifully and looked very proud!
I couldn’t believe it when they said it was already ten to four! I totally didn’t realise we’d been out there so long and was absolutely loving shooting something different to my normal sessions. The relationship between Adam and Jade was so easy to capture!
Jade works in a bakery and had a box of jam tarts for us next, they were so delicious! By this point we were very warm and headed back for a drink. Most of the shots we’d talked about prior to the shoot had been taken, so we let the animals have a drink before we finished up with the last few ideas.
I had been looking forward to Monday for so so long, I can’t believe it’s actually been and gone already. It was an absolute pleasure to finally meet all of you. I feel like I’ve gotten to know you over the last few years so it was fantastic to actually meet! I can’t say how much I loved that shoot with you both, it was an honour for you to let me take those photographs. So, sadly at this point it was time for me to head back to the station, but Jade had packed me up a few of the left over cakes, including a scrumptious caramel doughnut to enjoy on the journey home!
Adam works away so they both wanted to wait until they were back together on Wednesday before they viewed the photographs. I was very excited to edit the images and had them with Jade by the Tuesday evening so the wait to hear what they both thought was agonising! But safe to say, they both absolutely love the images! They linked their TV up to my website to view the images on a large screen which was pretty cool!
Thank you, thank you!