What a day!
There’s a story to this one, a unique story.. Elope.. no they didn’t, close though! Elope is running away secretly with your loved one. It wasn’t a secret, but I reckon we’ll still call it an elope, just cause it sounds cool!
You see Steph & Martin are from Germany, and they came all the way over to New Zealand to get married.. and not only that, but they had their heart set on one place- Tongaporutu! Rain or shine, they’ll be doing it, and they did! Wellington had floods, there was a strong South Easterly, and the tide wasn’t playing nicely…
Against the odds, it didn’t matter, it was a beautiful day, a very very special day, yes we had some rain, and yes we had to wade through the rising tide, we had a race with nature and we won, they won. And it was Amazing!
It must be said, their celebrant, Colleen Baird, was amazing, she helped them from the very beginning getting things organized and little details they needed, the two witnesses… honestly she was amazing! And to the witnesses, Brian & Sue Ellen, who went above and beyond and helped so much during the day.
When I arrived Martin was writing his speech, and Steph was still in New Plymouth getting her hair and make up done.
When Steph arrived we were still waiting for the tide to get low enough to get out to the beach, it got to an hour away and wasn’t looking like it was going to get much lower so Martin & Brian went up to set up a gazebo in case it rained. When I arrived the sun was shining and it hadn’t rained so it was looking good!
The boys got back and it was a rush to get ready then off we went, clambering over rocks and wading through a few areas where the tide hadn’t quite got low enough, then onto the beach and around to the two sisters. Luckily it was a South East wind so we were quite nicely sheltered. The ceremony begins tucked into a nice alcove in the cliff, and with the most amazing backdrop of the two sisters. The rain almost held off throughout the ceremony, only just catching us at the very end- so lucky!
It was on, I had a couple of minutes to capture that one special image, maybe two, then we had to go as the tide had turned. I couldn’t get one I had in mind, ce la vie! As we came back we were on a race with the tide, we had three pools to wade through, I picked up on the way out that the closest to the beach was the deepest, so luckily each one giving us slightly more time than the last on our way back. Throughout this the wind had picked up a little and it was raining, not hard, but enough to be a hindrance. The cameras & lenses were dripping, so I have to hand it to Canon, thanks for making my gear watertight! After wading through the first pool I was already wet from the thighs down, so it wasn’t even a thought if I needed to get in there for a shot. We were passing these caves and so I’d get up ahead of them while Martin helped his brand spanking new wife, suss the location of the next shot, and when they arrived I’d know what and where we all needed to be, each image was done super fast and they were so relaxed and easy to work with, we had it running like a well oiled machine!
Although this might sound all very pressured, it wasn’t really, there was smiles and laughter and it was all just part of the experience, honestly these two were just so amazing out there, as you can see by the images they were very relaxed and totally glowing in after wedding blissfulness:)
we made it to the beach and almost back to the van and boom! there’s a rainbow right behind the van! So special!!
getting them to their placement area 20 meters away two umbrellas turn inside out, then… light! the sun comes through the clouds behind us and lights everything up! truly a blessing!
back to the van for champagne, some cake, a laugh, a couple more photos, then we all left them there to bathe in their wedding day romance, just the two of them in their van, parked in one of the most picturesque places on the whole New Zealand coastline. What an amazing day!
Warm & fuzzy memories for all of us involved, most especially Steph & Martin!