Aline & Mark’s wedding was always going to be a special one for myself and Annie. I’ve known Mark for a few years as he trains Jiu Jitsu with me in Dun Laoghaire and when he told me they were having a small, intimate wedding with only his close family and friends in Galway, we jumped all over it. Timing-wise, it was the first wedding myself and Annie were going to be photographing after two autumn photography workshops and so we knew we’d be buzzing with ideas and new things we’d want to try. When we met up to chat about the day we explained that we really wanted to push the boat with the wedding photography and an excited Aline and Mark effectively gave us carte blanche to do our thing.
They chose to get married in the "Twelve Hotel” in Barna which is an incredibly cool little boutique hotel with some of the most accommodating staff we’ve ever worked with and 40 guests (+ Milo the dog) all made their way to a English/Portuguese ceremony with a nice early start at 11am. After the ceremony, we had almost 2 hours for the couple shoot so we started off by heading down to Barna Woods to get the couple shoot started.
We were a good ten minute walk into the woods when it started raining and by ‘raining’ I mean proper, west of Ireland rain. Buckets of it. It rained so hard that they had to close down some local roads for a while. We had a cute little wedding umbrella which we gave to Aline (which just about covered her and half covered Mark but they genuinely seemed not to care. “Ah sure it’s part of the story of our day!” said Mark.
We went back to the hotel to dry off a bit and the Hotel gave us access to their very funky West Restaurant where we did a little indoor shoot and, with a little break in the rain, we headed back out to the pier for a gorgeous early sunset.
After an unbelievably lovely dinner, they started speeches. It was fairly unusual to see all the wedding speeches delivered without notes and when Mark mentioned that his was going to be off the cuff, I was a little concerned as I’ve seen off the cuff speeches go pear shaped. Instead though, what followed was one of the most sincere and heart-felt set of speeches we’ve heard in a long time. Aline’s Brazilian family had flown over for the day and Mark delivered a good chunk of his speech in Portuguese. I don’t know what he said but it was enough to have everyone (who understood) in floods of tears.
Jesse (who also trains Jiu Jitsu with us!) from the Suitcase Trio turned up after dinner and gave us a set list which had the dance floor absolutely jam packed. He blasted out the Beastie Boys, House of Pain and a mix of Brazilian songs which resulted in some kind of set dance routine led by Aline & her family.
I don’t know what time myself and Annie left the party but it was after midnight and when we went up to our room, I realised that my shoes, socks and boxers were still soaking from earlier in the day but I hadn’t even noticed until then.
It was that kind of a wedding.