While hosting a party on the deck to celebrate the end of summer, I absentmindedly forgot to keep an eye on my furry friend and I let him get lost in the shuffle of the festivities and wander off. He tends to not wander far, so I wasn’t very worried. Upon doing a pet check-in, I looked over and saw Scottie Doodles and my one-year-old niece enjoying the view. By the time I got the camera my niece was long gone, like one-year-olds tend to do, but the doodles was still having his moment.
It’s always fun to shoot weddings and be a part of someone’s special day. It’s an honor and a privilege, and as a wedding photographer I hope to never forget that, no matter how many weddings I’m a part of. Especially at elopements. So often the prevailing attitude among some photographers is that somehow elopements are not as important because there’s not as many in attendance or they aren’t spending as much. I believe just the opposite. Someone who has made the decision to only have a select few or even no one else at all in attendance highly values this moment and is very careful regarding who is a part of their day and their memories. I do not take this lightly. I love weddings — I love everything about them. I love the vows, the nerves, the bling, the rings, the simplicity of capturing smiles and the uniting of two hearts before our Maker.
In this particular photo, the day did not go as planned. This poor bride and groom showed up to the hair appointment only to have the salon closed for the day, the restaurant lose their dinner reservation, and to top things off it hailed during their ceremony forcing them to cancel their outdoor ceremony plans. And yet, I watched as this couple took every disappointment in stride and focus on the one thing that was important–getting hitched. This photo captures this wonderfully calm and collected bride taking a moment to breathe, smile, and prepare the last bits of beauty before saying her “I do’s.”
Every now and then you run into a person that genuinely lights up the world. In particular, their world–the one that they personally influence. We just get to step into their world for a moment, and we love them for it. The smiler in this particular photograph was actually not my client. The real client was a small business owner that hired me to shoot bio shots for her website and proposal materials who happened to be sitting right next to the kind heart in this photograph. My actual client was wonderful and her shoot went well, but the warmth and energy flowing out of this other woman made me want to take her picture. So I did. I later on convinced her to do a mini-shoot that lasted about 5 minutes, gifting her the photos. She hated getting her picture taken, and yet she let me do it. I don’t know if she ever did anything with them or if she even liked them…but I sure liked her and hope she keeps bringing her smile to the rest of the world.
One of my favorite things about this senior portrait shoot of this Colorado grad (other than her fabulous leather jacket and scarf), was how this shoot started. This senior’s mom greeted me at the country club by giving me a big hug as we caught up on what’s been happening since the last family portrait session we did. Giggling like a high school girl herself, she smiled from ear to hear. Her happy tone ramped up a couple notches as she slyly said, “We’re going to have to book you again in April.” A little confused, I took a moment to get what she really meant. To make it crystal clear she patted her tummy. Laughing in joy she said, “I guess as one leaves the nest we get to add in another!”
Both generations smiled genuine smiles of true happiness…which made for one really, really fun and memorable senior portrait shoot.