This, as you probably noticed, is a picture of a fire hydrant.
It’s in a field. The light is beautiful. I love the colors. I like the framing.
But still, it’s a fire hydrant. In a field.
You might be wondering why I took this picture. I was too.
While little girls dream about their wedding day, I, apparently, dream about taking pictures of their wedding day.
It’s been a fantastic ‘offseason’ of preparation. I’ve met with our amazing clients, shot some great engagement sessions, and spent time planning weddings from Mt. Princeton to Princeton, New Jersey.
But I’m ready to get going.
I realized, after I took this picture the other morning, that I don’t see the fire hydrant. I see a bride… or maybe a groom… or a bride and groom… or the wedding party… or…
All that’s missing is the veil.
Weird? Totally. But I’m good with it. I’m ready to make some art this season. I’m so thankful for the privilege and anxious to work with my couples this year on one of the most important days of their lives.
This post is a another edition of an earlier post about sharing my ‘process’. It’s a little bit like looking behind the scenes, but not technical photographer stuff. It’s more about sharing a little of who I am and how I chase down becoming the photographer I want to be and that you deserve.If you want more context check out this post and this post. If not, carry on…
There’s some cliche phrase about how the ‘cobbler’s family has no shoes’ that I hear all the time. I think it has something to do with a professional whatever being so busy that they never have time to use their talents on their own family. Like a dentist never cleaning his kids teeth (worst example ever?) or, in my case, a photographer who never takes pictures of his own family.
I guess that’s not the story for me. If I were a cobbler (which I think refers to a fixer of shoes, not a wonderful dessert), my family would have loads of shoes. A lot of them useless, a lot of them too abstract, most of them without make-up, and a few worth holding on to.
That’s because my family, gracious as they are, typically make up the first line of practice subjects. And it’s not just Kris and Brady… although they carry the bulk of the load. This goes through the extended family as well.
The thing is I (a) want to stay sharp, (b) want to keep growing, and (c) don’t want to ‘practice’ on my clients.
So I practice on my people. And I’m so very thankful that they allow me to learn at their expense.
Here’s some examples… from the last 7 days… starting with Easter, going through this morning and even 10 minutes ago.
This is one of my favorite sessions – not just because I think the pictures came out awesome (which they did), but because it was so much fun to work with Jeremy and Vanessa. I’ve been meaning to post this for a while now, and I’m glad it’s finally happening!
Jeremy is a guy that makes life seem more fun when you’re around him and Vanessa is the perfect compliment. Together, they are a couple that could (should) someday have a movie made about their relationship and life together. It would be the perfect romantic comedy, hitting all the right notes of comedy, suspense, and the guy who gets the girl.
… and it doesn’t hurt that Jeremy can tell a story.
My favorite? Tough to say. But at the top would be:
- The first date. It’s a complicated story, but the ingredients include (a), Jeremy getting Vanessa to finally agree on a (sort of) first date by implying that he owned a bike and would love to go on a ride with Vanessa. (b) Jeremy then scrambling (unbeknownst to Vanessa) to get his hands on a bike, ultimately finding one with a broken seat forcing him to stand up for the entire ride. (c) Hurting himself while trying to ride the bike (but playing it cool). And then (d), locking up the bike at the end of the date and forgetting he even had the bike until a later time when Vanessa asks him about it.
- Getting her back. This is another complicated story where Jeremy and Vanessa sort of break up while Jeremy’s in another country for a time. On her birthday, he calls the restaurant she’s celebrating at (while he’s still out of the country) and works with the waiter to simultaneously make an awesome romantic gesture and punk the new guy trying to make his move on Vanessa. The story gives me chills. It’s awesome.
See? It’s ‘made for TV’ stuff. I had so much fun walking abound the University of Colorado and Chautauqua Park listening to their story and now I can’t wait for their wedding at the Manor House in June!
I’ve been dragging my feet on this post for a while, hoping that you’d have seen Catching Fire by now. If not, you should. It’s pretty good, I think. Even if it’s just to watch this one particular scene.
Every time I see the movie, I want to stand up and slow-clap for Cinna (Lenny Kravitz’s character). I’ve seen the movie a couple times and it still gets me. The scene I’m talking about is the one where Katniss twirls and her dress changes from the wedding dress to the Mockingjay Dress.
At that moment, the crowd’s collective mind is blown. The revolution tips to the point that it starts to impact the Capital. It all happens because Katniss’ dress makes a statement. A loud statement.
The camera shows Cinna and the look on his face tells you three things:
- He did this on purpose
- He knows he’s in trouble for taking a stand
- He thinks it’s worth it
And I start the slow-clap. Bravo Lenny Kravitz’s character! Way to speak loudly through a wedding dress!
I want to clap because this is exactly what makes art so important. It’s powerful. This is why I take pictures. Good art moves people. It inspires people.
In that same line of thinking, love moves and inspires people. Hence my being drawn to wedding photography. I hope to use my art to speak about things that matter, and what matters more than love?
As I mention in my bio on this very site, Dave Matthew says it best: “Love is not a whisper or a weakness. No, love is strong.” I hope my photography is an exclamation point to that idea.