Friday, February 05, 2010

Three Friends, Three Brides, One Photographer

They say it's all in who you know. They say the best advertising is word of mouth. Whoever 'they' are makes no difference to me since 'they' are absolutely correct when it comes to my line of work. As every smart person in the wedding industry knows, it's all about appealing to the bride--and if the bride falls in love with your work or product, you can guarantee she'll tell her friends. Or, if you're a photographer like me, you get the privilege of spending the entire wedding day with her best friends, which is exactly what I've had the opportunity to do three times over with the lovely women featured here!

Mariko and I met while living in the same dorm in Vancouver several years back. She and I became good friends, and when it was time for her friend Danika to hunt down a wedding photographer, Mariko (bless her heart!) referred her to me. Danika and I chatted over the phone and set up a meeting. Both of us hit it off over right away, but then again it's hard to not like Danika--she's one of the most cheerful people you'll ever meet! At Danika's wedding, I also met Katt, who was one of the bridesmaids along with Mariko. I had such a great time photographing those ladies and loved watching their tight-knit friendship unfold in front of the camera.

Not too many months later, Mariko got married and I traveled down to Oregon to photograph her wedding. Of course Katt & Danika were there, and Katt let me know that she wanted me as her photographer when she got married. A few months after that, Katt emailed to inform me that she was engaged. Exactly one year later, (this past Christmas) I flew back to Vancouver to photograph Katt's wedding, where of course I had the pleasure of catching up with a couple of fabulous bridesmaids!

I felt somewhat bittersweet after the wedding ceremony when we were all mingling in the church foyer, and told the girls with a laugh that I was "3 down, none to go", but their response was, "Oh no, we've got friends, and sisters and...." See wedding photography is so much more than a business transaction to me, not only because I've had the distinct honour of being the photographer chosen to document these three best friends' wedding days, but because I truly treasure the relationships that were formed throughout these experiences.

I've met some amazing people at weddings. One bridesmaid and I have been emailing back and forth recently, brainstorming over a collaborative photo/travel project. Recently I met a former missionary couple who vaguely remembered meeting my uncle who lives in the remote jungles of the Philippines! And of course there was the wedding where I met a rugged, red-headed bagpiper who swept me off my feet and married ME!

My job, like any, has its pitfall and challenges, but the fulfillment that comes from pouring all of my creative and technical expression into the lives of a couple and their loved ones, and the relationships that stem from such an intimate and unique relationship blows me away time and again. For every couple who has trusted me with their wedding day, invested their resources in the work I produce, and let me into their lives as more than just a photographer, thank you very, very much.

OH! Also I should make mention of the grooms featured alongside their stunning brides in these photos...Jeff, (+Danika) Isaac, (+ Mariko) Jarrod (+Katt) thank you for all the fabulous moments you helped to create alongside your wives...I know wedding photography can be daunting to a lot of men, but you were great!