Lauren & Eoghan – Brighton Love

Without the little thaoski experiment I had going on behind the scenes, Lauren & Eoghan’s shoot would probably be described as a typical engagement shoot. The couple rock up in their chosen outfits, you pick somewhere nice to shoot for 90 minutes and the woalah … there’s your engagement shoot.

If you’ve been reading my blog for some time you’ll know that’s not how I typically do it. Lots of planning goes into it – multiple outfit/ location/ hair/ make up changes etc-. And a lot of time is spent on uncovering the essence of the couple’s story.

But lucky for me, Lauren was very familiar with my work so she sent me a very long and beautiful description of her relationship. I fell in love with her story right away …

Lauren & Eoghan’s Story
About a year and a half ago he started working for the same company as me. At this time I was actually dating somebody else but things were not working out. When we met and got on so well I realised what a connection 2 people could have I just knew I was with the wrong person. It sounds dramatic but it was actually strangely simple and both I and the guy I was with at the time just knew that we had to go our separate ways as we wanted different things.

With Eoghan it has all happened incredibly quickly when I think about it but we are both true believers in following your heart and your instinct…and my instinct knows that this boy is the one for me. He is so incredibly kind and genuine and has time for anyone. I want to grow old with him. It wasn’t a straightforward start for us, partly because he is actually 4 years younger than me and he didn’t think he stood a chance with an “older woman.” In reality, he had me at hello. Though it took us months to admit our feelings, we’ve been together and madly in love ever since.

One of the reasons I want to marry Eoghan is that he still has that childlike sense of adventure, everything is amazing and he looks at the world with such intrigue. He never changes around certain people he is just straight up genuinely himself, and loves me for being myself. He is a spontaneous romantic which is how we’ve ended up engaged fairly soon in our relationship and though some may be sceptic about quick engagements I love him for that very reason!

As soon as I read her story I knew I wanted to capture their chemistry on camera. I think when you are younger you have an optimism that surpasses anyone’s doubt. When I think of the movie The Notebook, my favourite line in the whole entire movie is is when Rachel McAdam’s character says …

“It was real, wasn’t it? You and me. Such a long time ago, we were just a couple of kids. But we really loved each other, didn’t we?”

And I think that is a feeling that can’t be faked. It’s an inner knowing. A sense of being that can only be understood if you’ve been there. And I think that’s why so many people love that movie so much. Because many of us have been there and lost it. Or yearn to feel it for the first time.

To me Lauren and Eoghan represent the beautiful youthfulness that couples much older and wiser than them yearn to feel again. Between them there is this magical chemistry and openness that I myself am a little envious about.

What I learnt from working with Lauren & Eoghan – Art Directing Tip
For couples who are naturally very intimate and always want to be close, the most exciting thing is separating them. There is a chemistry and magic that takes place when you separate them. At first it’s a little awkward for them … but just hold the space and watch them … They’ll eventually move towards and find each other again but the moments in between are truly mesmerising. Check out this shot …

To me this first image totally captures everything I love about their relationship. The way he makes her smile. How naturally beautiful she is. How he looks at her (all the time!). When they look at each other the whole world disappears. And even though they are a apart, they seem so close to each other … almost touching (even though they’re not).

I could have been happy walking away with just this one image. That’s how much I love it : )

Eoghan proposed 3 times …
Due to his spontaneity he didn’t actually have a ring when he first asked me to marry him. We were on the aeroplane on the way to America and were sending each other silly messages through the seat to seat messaging service and he said he wanted to marry me. He however warned me that this wasn’t my official proposal.

At camp during a talent show (note: we spent 3 months in the USA teaching at an arts and sports summer camp in Pennsylvania) … he dedicated a song to ‘his fiance’ which caused hundreds of gasps from the kids and adults in the audience as nobody knew! Afterwards he told me I had a ring but I had to wait for it with my official proposal. Talk about suspense!

It was in North Carolina that Eoghan ‘got down on one knee’. We were visiting the uni campus where I had studied abroad 3 years previously. Little did I know but when excitedly talking about Carolina I must have mentioned to him one of the school’s famous landmarks being the “kissing bench” which is a popular place for proposals. He remembered that little detail and it meant so much. and 3rd time lucky I got a beautiful ring!

There are actually so many more pretty images but one of my pet hates is when people blog 10 variations of the same image so what I’ll do is I’ll post my favourite images here. And then upload a few variations in this Facebook album (will do this over the next couple of days).

Behind the Scenes stuff you didn’t know about the experiment…

  • Lauren and Eoghan were actually meant to meet me in Brighton at 2pm but due to traffic they couldn’t get there till much later in the afternoon. We were hoping to shoot at 2-3 locations with them but in the end we only had time for one location. I was worried they drove 3.5 hours to meet me and would only get half an hour of shoot time (actually it was more like 15 minutes because be we were shooting 2 couples!).
  • I chose Brighton as the location for this experiment because I was told Brighton has the best light in the UK (I couldn’t agree more!). But I wanted to avoid the pier because it seemed too cliche to do that at Brighton. And besides, how could I say no to that view of the English landscape!
  • Lauren & Eoghen are hoping to one day move to Brighton (Lauren studied there) so this location holds a very special spot in their hearts already.
  • You probably won’t notice this (given I haven’t posted lost of images) but in all the shots, Eoghan is pulling Lauren towards him. Check out the 2nd last picture. He’s very subtly pulling her closer. He does this all the time : )
  • We also took some test shots of Lauren & Eogen in front of an industrial backdrop. I’ll post a couple of shots on Facebook later this week.

Photographer: Darren Wong
Art Director: Thaoski

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12 Responses to “Lauren & Eoghan – Brighton Love”
  1. Oh my goodness Thaoski I don’t know how to thank you! These pictures and the experience have such a special place in our hearts! We got so much from it. We cannot thank you enough for capturing our excitement and hope for the future. Thank you thank you thank you 🙂 Lauren & Eoghan xxx

  2. MissPainterly says:

    Ooh so wonderful! Lauren and Eoghan have been captured beautifully, they must be so pleased. What a great team Thaoski and Darren were making those last sunset minutes count, so many great shots! Well done guys xxx

  3. Kemi says:

    i love the first shot the most….its the way he looks at her….
    love your work Thaoski

  4. Kacie Lynch says:

    Oh my goodness, these are amazing! You guys did a fantastic job. And that location is spectacular! 🙂

  5. Absolutely love this – beautiful xXx

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