Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Not The Nine O'Clock News

You may not recognise the face, but you'd definitely know the voice. Newstalk Radio's Sinéad Hussey married Brendan on Saturday in a wedding that had it all. High emotion, beautiful settings, a brief comedy sketch in the local Garda Station, a great welcome from Alan, Deirdre and Warren in the Shamrock Lodge Hotel and a brilliant atmosphere all day.

Sinéad's house was like Connolly Station with all the arrivals and departures, as neighbours and relations called to wish her well. It was a similar scene in Ardagh when I arrived as people gathered in the sunny Churchyard on a warm afternoon, until the sound of Brian Gorman's 1929 Vintage Austin approaching sent everyone scuttling inside.

As Sinead arrived to the top of the aisle, sobs and sniffles could be heard echoing around the church. I was concentrating on the photos, but out of the corner of my eye I could see that both bridesmaids, Sinead's mother Mary, and Sinéad herself were having a little happy cry. And I couldn't swear to it, but I think I saw a tear in the eye of the hardened crimefighter Brendan himself at that moment. Weddings are emotional, with moments of joy, tenderness, and love. All of these were on display on Saturday, and it was lovely that in the midst of all the wedding day activity, Sinéad and Brendan were able to have quiet moments together.

The Shamrock Lodge Hotel was looking great when we arrived, with the function room resplendent in lilac and white. A few big family photos and a quiet walk around the grounds with the happy couple before dinner and it was time for me to leave and let the party really get going.














Sunday, August 22, 2010

Sharon & Darren

I was burning up the miles this weekend, with weddings in Mount Wolsely in Carlow and the Shamrock Lodge Hotel in Athlone. On Friday, I was on the road to Tullow early,worried about the weather, as I drove through monsoon conditions. It was a far cry from the climate Sharon and Darren have got used to in their adopted city of Dallas, Texas. Thankfully, conditions improved as the day went on, and apart from a bit of wind and a few angry wasps, we didn't have too much to worry about.

The Presidential Suite was a hive of activity when I arrived and Sharon even seemed to be doing some Trintech work on her laptop as everyone buzzed around. It was much more serene over in the O suite where Darren, Patsy, Eamon, Niall and Conor were nicely chilled out. Darren even stayed cool calm and collected at the Church when the ceremony had to be delayed by half an hour as the Dublin Gospel Choir had some travel difficulties.

Once we got going, everything went swimmingly. The Church was a sea of flowers provided by Ben Conroy, Jack O'Callaghan was the Pictureman on video. After the ceremony, hotel manager Gerry Lavin from just up the road here in Ballymote brought us for a little wander around the gardens and when we got back to the reception, the Dallas Cowboys were in full hoedown mode.





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Thursday, August 19, 2010

Aideen & Pa

I was on familiar ground last week for Aideen and Pa's wedding, not just because it was down the road in Roscommon and The Abbey Hotel, but also because I'd photographed Aideen's sister Jacinta's wedding last year.

I popped in and met Pa and his best man Ger in the hotel before calling to Aideen's house. They were cool calm and collected, with no sign of big match nerves. The Keane house was buzzing with activity, and Bridie's flower garden was in full bloom.

After the wedding, we stopped by the old Abbey ruins for a few minutes. The bride & groom's chauffeur disappeared, so for their grand arrival at the hotel they were sqaushed into the passenger seat of the photographers Land Rover. Should make for a funny scene on John McMorrow's video.

After the party, Aideen & Pa were heading for Canada and a camper van on Monday for what should be a fabulous honeymoon.











Friday, August 13, 2010

Sophie & Colin

My big challenge on Sunday was to get some shots of Matthew, Colin & Sophie's 5 year old son, who was quite determined not to be photographed, and watched me like a hawk all day. The photojournalistic insticts had to come to the fore, and I managed to pick out a few when he was slightly off guard.

After the ceremony in St Therese's Williamstown, we stopped to take some pictures just out the road at the old mill at Templetogher. Then it was back to The Galway Bay Hotel for the second time in a month where Alicja met and took care of everyone. Mike Flannery from Tuam did the video - it was the first time we've worked together, but I'm sure our paths will cross again.

To spare Edward and Paul's blushes, I haven't posted the bouquets picture, but I've no doubt it'll be in the album.....











Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Zelda & Chris

On Saturday I headed off to Straffan for Zelda & Chris's wedding. I'd been looking forward to this one for a while. It was my first time to photograph a wedding in The K Club, and it didn't disappoint.

After spending some time with Zelda in Straffan Manor, I popped down to the Straffan Inn where Chris and his groomsmen were having a nerves-settling pint. After the ceremony, we did a few shots in the K Club grounds. I hope Dermot Desmond wasn't too annoyed that we held up his Saturday fourball as we took over the 14th fairway for a few minutes.

Eamon from Big Apple filmed the day - we always work well together so it was great to have him along - and the very entertaining Dan O'Donoghue had the guests spellbound with his sleight of hand and magic skills. Hard to Touch kept everyone dancing all night. A special hello to probably my favourite bridesmaid, Amanda, and to Dave and Kuwnara(?). Chris and Zelda's real honeymoon is later this year when they head to India for 5 weeks, but I hope they're enjoying their week's rest in the sun this week too.