Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Scenes from a wedding - Part 1

I really wanted there to be a way to start this post with a story, but I don't know that there is a story. Because what you're about to see is not linear, although it is a collection with a common thread. All of these images are from weddings where I was a second photographer.

What I love about being a second photographer is the spontaneity. As the primary photographer, your job is to focus on the big moments - a first look, the walk down the aisle, the first kiss, the first dance, the cake cutting - and as a result, many of the other happenings on the periphery during the big events can fall to the wayside. An awesome primary photographer will capture many candid moments as well, but by having a second photographer, the field of view is that much greater. In fact, a second photographer can add to the experience of the day by providing photos of moments that even the bride and groom did not witness. I know that when Ben and I got married, I was so wrapped up in staring at him with googly eyes during our ceremony that I completely missed the beautiful tears his grandmother shed as she watched us say our vows. Ben was apparently not as in-the-moment as I was, since he was the one who noticed them and told me about it later, but I'll forgive him for that ;0).

In addition to those special reactions, it's also my job when I'm the second photographer to capture non-traditional or non-requested-but-still-important portraits. For large wedding parties, the second photographer is more of a kind herder, shooing all of the groomsmen and parents away from the bar, and making sure they are on deck when it is their time to smile and give a good fake laugh for pictures (yes, the fake laugh looks fake, until it turns into a real one, and that's the one you photograph) to make sure that all of the pictures get done in the allotted amount of time. Sometimes in between calling the shots, I can sneak in a close up of the people in the portrait, laughing or enjoying a moment of closeness with friends and family or their newly acquired spouse while the primary photographer gets the long shot of the whole group.

During the second half of the year, I second shot a bunch of weddings with Love Life Images. Rather than feature each wedding individually, I decided to pull a bunch of favorites from all of them. And then when I pulled all of my favorites, I realized that there were still too many for a single blog post, so I'm splitting it into two - one for posed portraits and details and one for the candid moments. First up, details and portraits...and maybe a story or two to go along.


I definitely have a soft spot for kids at weddings because they are just so cute and love to be in front of the camera. The photo below is from a very intimate wedding where the bride and groom's children were the wedding party. While the primary photographer was doing portraits of just the bride and groom, the kids were happy to pose it up for me and we got some beautiful photos of them too!

Just saying...this ring was a stunner.

This was the first wedding I tagged along for, and we hit up almost all of the monuments on the National Mall for their wedding party portraits. I remember riding on the bus with the bridal party and watching in awe as the familiar sights of DC flew past, thinking how it was such a treat to go to such fun places while working. The tourists loved seeing the couple in all of their wedding finery...I think everyone at the Lincoln Memorial gave them congratulations!

Not to name drop (okay, maybe a little) but this cake was made by Charm City Cakes aka the Ace of Cakes. You'll see more of this wedding in the next post - this couple met at swing dance camp and had the BEST first dance like ever.


So these next three pictures are portraits that were taken at a wedding on a horse farm, but otherwise have no wedding connection at all...but I just love them. The light was phenom and the animals just knew what to do, no posing instructions required. It's like they wanted to be photographed....

Studly James Bond types...yes, I love my job.

Finally, I debated putting these in the candid category because that's what they really are, but they have such a strong portrait feel that I thought they fit in better here. The last wedding we did had this amazing band and at the end of the night, and the primary photographer asked me to spend some time photographing them for a little fun project. Their stage lighting was incredible and provided some awesomely dramatic effects.

Coming up tomorrow...part two! And a huge thanks to Jennifer, Stephen, and Elisha for letting me come along to photograph such amazing weddings!

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