This is one of the most unique pre-wedding shoots you will ever see. Because it was set against the backdrop of the 75th anniversary of the D-Day invasion in 2019, otherwise known as Operation Overlord in Normandy on the north-western coast of France, beginning on June 6th 1944.
I took a flight from Adelaide to Hong Kong, then to Paris, then a 3 hour train to the Normandy coast to stay with Michael and Bex and her family, in a lovely mansion in the rolling green countryside, that bore witness to one of the largest invasion forces ever assembled and fought in a conflict – in taking back Western Europe from Nazi Germany.
Split over 3 separate short days of photography, we witnessed many once in a life time events, such as over 1000 paratroopers jumping from 17 C130 Hercules transporters, to M4 Sherman tanks rolling past us in the mud, to vintage bands and music singing in the town squares entertaining visitors and military personnel from all around the world.
Michael and Bex engage in what we call ‘living history’ – to retell the stories of the men and women that passed through here 75 years ago, many just barely out of high schools and colleges. Every year they visit Normandy with the family to partake in the military and civil ceremonies and events throughout the week. As a history buff myself, it was fascinating and surreal to step back in time and be a part of something that defined the 20th century and shaped modern Europe.
I will be back next year in Southern England to photograph their wedding at a stunning countryside estate – 2020 will be a huge year for everyone.