Natasha and Adam’s Wedding at Manor Barn, Buriton

One of my favourite locations to photograph weddings is The Manor Barn in Buriton, near Petersfield, Hampshire.

The barn itself is a spacious and light, with a very high ceiling and natural exposed brick walls. It’s big enough so that people can easily move around, yet has a very cosy feeling. The grounds surrounding the barn provide countless opportunities for outdoor photos, and the lawn behind the main house feels like a set from a Jane Austen novel. But perhaps best of all are the managers of Manor Barn, Janet and Tim, who are incredibly efficient at organising things, yet are friendly, warm and helpful throughout the day. Though Janet and Tim don’t know it, I’ve adopted them as my English Aunty and Uncle!

But even with a location as ideal as Manor Barn, there’s always the challenge of the weather. At Natasha and Adam’s wedding in February, it was overcast and cold, threatening to rain, or worse, snow. However, in spite of the cold drizzle and snow flurries, Natasha and Adam had a wonderful day filled with romance, laughter and happiness in spite of the grey skies.

As much as I’d like to, I can’t control the weather. But there are some things I can do to make sure it doesn’t ruin your day.

  • Preparation. Like a photojournalism story for the Sunday Times, I scrupulously prepare for any eventually. That means checking the weather forecasts and if it does look like rain (or even snow!), I bring several brightly coloured umbrellas, along with a couple of extra fleece’s, especially for the older guests.
  • If the wedding is somewhere I haven’t photographed before, I either go there a few weeks before, or make sure I’m there several hours before guests arrive to scout possible locations for sheltered or indoor photo opportunities.
  • And perhaps most importantly, is the attitude I bring to the shoot. If I’m confident and happy (which partly comes from thorough research and preparation), then the couple and guests will feel the same. If I panic (which I never do!), then the feeling spreads like wildfire.

I love the relaxed joy and laughter that comes through in the group shots. In spite of the chilly weather, there’s genuine warmth and happiness here. The best man was brilliant at handing out umbrellas and keeping everyone laughing with his jokes. And in spite of the snow flurries you can see in the big group shot, everyone was happy and smiling.

Hi John
We just wanted to say a huge Thank You for all our lovely wedding photos. We are absolutely delighted with them and now have the dilemma of which pictures to put in frames!
Thank you so much for being so brilliant on the day, we had so many lovely comments about your kind nature and professional approach.
Warm regards,
Tasha and Adam


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photographed by John Cole

I feel strongly that your wedding day is exactly that, your day, not mine. You tell me the kind of photos you want and then we'll work together to create a unique set of images.

I work in reportage style because that is what I am -- a reportage photographer who does weddings. I've shot dozens of stories for leading British and international publications, and I bring my magazine style of photography to your wedding.

I work unobtrusively and sensitively, concentrating on creating natural, spontaneous photos. I do group shots quickly and painlessly (though never sloppily), so that you are free to spend more time with your family and friends.

Your Wedding, photographed by John Cole