Little charmers like these two can totally make my day as a wedding photographer. I know some people think that a wedding is no place for children and if you happen to be doing a super stylish and grown-up sort of affair, then, ok. Luckily, in Oregon, there are lots of weddings that take place in a more relaxed and forgiving atmosphere… the little kids can be an organic addition to the party.
These two had a job to do… he with the rings and she with a basket of flowers. One of the best parts of any wedding with this age group is watching the rather random process of walking down the aisle to complete their tasks. Everyone turns to enjoy it!
I am about to design a wedding album for this wedding and I can’t wait to revisit these two and a really fine late summer wedding. ;0)
Children ask better questions than adults. “May I have a cookie?” “Why is the sky blue?” and “What does a cow say?” are far more likely to elicit a cheerful response than “Where’s your manuscript?” Why haven’t you called?” and “Who’s your lawyer?”
Go ahead, invite the kids and have a great time!
Time is the name of the game in any relationship. Sometimes it seems like a hurdle to jump and sometimes it’s a runaway train but if you are part of a solid team, you can face it together. Ty and Lamar were partners for 10 years before they were able to marry legally… that’s a long time to want something you can’t have. When the day finally came, I was caught many times by how perfect a fit they were together. We did this portrait a little before the ceremony at the Academy Chapel and that gave them a chance for some quiet time before the whole crowd thing that a wedding becomes.
I am happy to see that our society is moving in the right direction… it’s past time for a balanced world.
Destination weddings can be a lot of work for everyone involved if the planning isn’t up to snuff. When someone has taken the pains to bring me and my gear clear across the country to cover their wedding, I make sure that we do a lot of talking about the timing. It’s a good idea to bring your photographers in a couple of days ahead for a few reasons. The most obvious one being that it’s a way to get past the aggravations of weather and delayed flights. It is a also good way to ensure that your photographers are rested and ready to give you the best coverage possible, and, if any gear gets messed up in transit, your photographer has a chance to get it replaced in time for your wedding. All of that seems like a no brainer to me.
What I offer my clients in a destination situation is a chance to spend a couple of hours outside of the wedding day… most often it’s a rehearsal dinner sort of coverage. It helps all of us to get comfortable before the big day. Jen and Chris had a tea for their families at the hotel the day before the wedding. I took some time with the tea service but when they were done, they asked if I would go with them to get the rings cleaned. You bet! Old Town Alexandria has a free trolly that runs up and down King Street… all we had to do was hop on and go a couple of stops to the jewelry designer. Basically, we got to treat it as an engagement session… it gave us lots of opportunities to do sweet pictures of just the two of them in various places before we took our frozen noses back to the hotel.
I love my job!
The lyrics to Love Me Tender were rolled into little scrolls and wrapped with glittery gold ribbons… each guest found a scroll on their chair as they sat for the ceremony on this New Year’s Eve. Part way through, the groom’s dad brought his guitar out to the mic and the entire crowd sang with him and the new couple… it was one of the sweetest wedding songs you could imagine… everyone singing and smiling!
The Red Rose Ballroom was a perfect venue for this party… Stumbleweed played some fabulous bluegrass and a fine spread was put on by Cheryl’s on 12th
The whole shebang was pulled together by EJP Events… a long time trusted coordinator in Portland.
I hope all of you getting married in the near future will do your homework as well as these people did. It made for a really relaxed and personal celebration and that’s what a wedding should be.
Every bride has a wish list. It’s no surprise that parts of her photography coverage will include items on her wish list. It’s my job to find out what she has in mind… to be sure that we communicate in detail about the parts of the day that she has dreamed about. Case in point, I don’t usually look for a huge landscape with a tiny couple in it when I consider portraits. It is a trend in today’s wedding imagery that sort of baffles me because it takes the emotional content out of view.
Last week, I had a a great little wedding in Old Town Alexandria. The Morrison House Hotel was the venue and my couple really wanted a portrait on the front staircase… they had seen one like it during their planning sessions. It was a classic sort of space and it made for a nice image. It may not classify as a portrait, per se, but I am sure it will satisfy her wish and will remind them of this happy day for a long time to come.
If you are making plans, local or destination, I’d be happy to talk to you!
The grace moments happen without fanfare… you can’t really stage something like this without making it look dorky. It’s not something you can suggest to a couple, it has to be an organic thing. It has to come from them.
Jessica and Phil had a crowded wedding day. Many people and a tight timeline made for sort of a frazzled tone to the early parts. It was most noticeable when we took 15 minutes after dinner to sneak out for some pictures of just the two of them. I watched them exhale and they began to breathe a little easier. Shy of the camera to start with, I asked them if they had honeymoon plans. That was all it took as they started to talk about Cabo San Lucas and the relaxing they’d be able to do there… like a great shiny reward hanging just ahead.
Trust your photographer to find and catch the grace moments… you’ll want to have them for later.
We all know what a pain it can be to spend an otherwise lovely afternoon in the company of your dweeb cousins. She got the plum assignment of flower girl and was very excited until she realized that she had to work alongside her cousin… it just went downhill from there. This moment was one of several where she had to hang with him and keep her dress clean, waiting for the ceremony to start.
These are the little moments I live for… anything that can tug at your inner child and send you rocketing back to the scratchy dress and the patent leather shoes and all of the other injustices in a young life. Weddings are full of moments… some are grand and some are small but they all count.
I am lucky in my job!
There once was a wedding on a sunny farm in Newberg… high in the hills on a very hot August day. We had to do some dancing around our original schedule to accommodate the flavor of the light. There literally was no place to go for romantic portraits until after dinner… that’s when the sun had gotten low enough to give us this lovely light for softer portraits. What I like is that Betsy and Rob trusted me to make it work. We slipped out to the back of the property between dinner and toasts… we only needed these ten minutes but we couldn’t have had them at any other point in the day.
Vibrant Table designed and catered this marvelous day… they were able to roll with the weather, too. ;0)
Keep your plans flexible if you can..you won’t regret it!
The architecture of a face is in the bone structure, yes, but more in the character of the person. You can tell by how they carry themselves that they are strong or soft, complex or simple. All of that means that there is a sense of architecture in a good portrait.
Cait married Matt on a blustery September afternoon in downtown Portland… the wedding was at the elegant University Club… an institution in the very best sense of the word. When it was time to have them out for portraits, we went out into the streets looking for good light and interesting spaces. They both brought this wonderful sense of play to the table and they trusted me to make it work.
Everyone has an interesting face… the key to it is to be alive in your own skin… stop worrying about the magazines and the media. The architecture of your face won’t be like anyone else and that is something to be celebrated.
Let’s talk about interesting pictures, ok?
Be still… be really still for just a moment. Sometimes I see a chance to make an interesting portrait but I know it will hinge on the ability of my subject to just focus for a minute and that can be really hard to do on a fast paced wedding day.
Tiffany and Jon wanted to have their first meeting on the rooftop of The Nines so off we went… we did several in the bright September sun with Portland all laid out around us. To get to that section of the roof, we walked through this very dark, breezy space with tall shifting panels of gauze. It was sort of trippy and it registered in the back of my mind as something interesting. Just as we were finishing up, we walked past this hallway on our way to the elevator and I got to see it differently. I knew time was tight but I asked Tiffany to stand in the space and to hold very still… I was working without a tripod and I knew that flash would ruin what I was seeing so I turned my shutter way down and leaned hard into the wall. She did her elegant best and we have this glamorous piece as our prize. ;0)
A professional photographer will see the possibilities and make them work… how about that?