One Size Doesn’t Fit All: Wedding Photography
It is a rainy day and I know Jenna and Jonathan are leaving on their honeymoon headed for the heat. Rebecca and Jordan are on preparing for Indonesia at the end of the week, and I’m pretty sure Zach and Kim are just getting back from Jamaica or Mexico… I’m not sure I can’t keep everything straight. Three couples, three weddings I’m simultaneously working on, and as I look through the images I’m really thinking two things.
1) How lucky I am to work for the couples I do.
2) How different each of them is.
People often ask me to define my style and I used to say well it is this and this. But, this year, the more I think about it my style is defined by the couples I work for and comes from getting to know them as people and as friends. I’m not a show up and shoot kind of photographer. I like having coffee with the camera tucked away, hearing about what makes a couple excited. And it is then that I can store away a little information to pull from on their wedding day or engagement shoot.
Let me give you an example. Jenna, Jonathan and I met at Starbucks on a warm night about three weeks before their wedding. We joked about Jonathan showing up early for their first date and sitting nervously in a parking lot across the street. We talked about the Olympics and we talked about the renovations on their new house. Jenna said though the house was looking good she was sad to be leaving the room she grew up in, and that Jonathan really didn’t want a pink bedroom. I laughed and we kept chatting.
On their wedding day this past Sunday Jenna got ready in the room she grew up in. The dress hung from the lace covered window as she had her make up done and I photographed the little details of the day. Jenna’s perfume was sitting on the bed and I had spotted this little pink wand tucked away beside the couch I thought this would be the way I would pull meaning into the shot. The wand bringing a little bit of her childhood, and the perfume a bit of a symbol of the start of a new adventure. It also helped that I knew Jenna and Jonathan were using soft pinks, and whites throughout their wedding day so this image fits with the rest of their story.
Zach and Kim met at the shore of Georgian Bay and they had both spent their summers growing up there. The place itself means a lot of meaning to them individually, and together. They chose to get married in the area and I wanted to make sure I made a few wide photographs that really captured the the place and the character of the landscape.
And finally sometimes it isn’t about the things you know ahead of the wedding day but being observant on the day of. (Some people may argue that is an obvious on all photography jobs but I would say it is more than just what is happening at the moment.) It is about how friends interact with one another, how couples are together. Everyone is different. I think being able to read that can make what might look completely cheesy with one group of people will look completely natural with another.