I'm typically a confident person on wedding days, so confident, I tend to push my timing to the limit when it comes to picking Sue up on our way. Personally, tardiness correlates with my confidence of the situation I'm walking into (it's guaranteed I will be late to a social situation, sorry friends), and I was on time and grasping at my schedule. We're always on time, but this wedding was one of the few where the two of us would split up to work with our respective sides of the bridal party.
My confidence was a little shaken at the prospect of me having to be just as structured and in control as Sue is, even though I've come into my own skills in posing and keeping time from what she's taught me over the years. Our wedding was with a family Sue's done work for over the years, and I felt pressure to do well by them and show my merits to her without her reassurance.
The groom, Quinten, met us in the AgroLiquid parking lot and gave us a tour of the building. I could feel the brand with the building and floor to ceiling and the artwork on every wall. He led us through the building, explaining the machinations of the office spaces and showing Sue where she would be photographing Hailey and her bridesmaids getting ready.
Detail shots are what gets my motor running, so the healthy amount of time I had budgeted before I needed to start with our groom. I used that time to learn the space from the natural light bathed glass atrium to the rose petals forming the aisle to the warmly lit reception space. In lieu of a guestbook, the couple asked guests to sign wood hearts to drop into a frame with a red or black sharpie. They provided useful tools for creativity with their wedding rings from the hearts to the fresh roses in Hailey's bouquet.
I found my flow and met Quinten and his groomsmen. I let go and began to visualize my shots like a puzzle, taking advantage of this unique setting. It felt like I was efficient in my work, a strange word to me in terms of creativity, but I was confident in the decisions I made with my shots (and still am).
Shortly after, I met with Sue, Hailey and her bridesmaids. She makes her vision come to life without much effort, but based on my own comparisons, directing behind the camera must be like second nature to her. This was refined and beautiful with bold colors and bold personality.
Quinten and Hailey's first look was tender and sentimental. The look on his face when he saw her is what I could liken to tunnel vision, like nothing else mattered. It was a moment that didn't need a time or date to stand out. This was a theme that followed from capturing the group as a whole (I thought they looked great so my chosen adjective was "fresh", Don't ask why, I can't tell you.).
Their ceremony was highlighted by all of the natural light bathing the crowd in color. The light made the bridesmaids' dresses pop and Hailey looked like a star. It's almost a guarantee I would be at the front catching the bride and groom's faces and the exchange of rings, but this time I couldn't resist the opportunity to get shots I wouldn't normally with this extraordinary venue. It was a treat to take on a different role, getting views I normally wouldn't. This was my favorite sand ceremony and their first kiss as man and wife blazed in front of the audience of those they hold dear.
After the guests filed into the reception and the paperwork to make the occasion official, we stole the bride and groom for group shots. The setting around the AgroLiquid building was picturesque and the wind was blowing in all the right ways. Our only concern was the sun I previously raved about, but it turns out it was everything I needed. Quinten and Hailey look straight out of the pages of a glossy with their love centerstage, the wind blowing the fields, and the dramatics of the dress keeping your eye on them. This truly is my favorite part of every wedding.
Romance blossomed and then I started to think about cake, so we moved on to the reception. The ambiance was warm, the tables sparkled with rose gold sequin accents, and savory catering enticed our olfactory sensors. While we anticipated the grand entrances and the start of the festivities, we indulged in conversation with our tablemates, and I was fascinated by a young man folding napkin roses.
The entrances followed the warm tone and the audience learned of some of their treasured moments of chance encounters, memorable dates, and the blessing. We filled our bellies and then they tended all of their guests, a wonderful quality to see in a wedding reception. Easy listening, country and energizing crowd pleasers propelled the evening of merriment (and cake) before we stole them away for one last moment. Even though not everyone in the shoot was aware of the whole Titanic (1997) film, we still wanted to make them king and queen of the world and be stunned before departing.
Thank you both for allowing me to be a part of your special day to continue learning, growing, and working. Once again, I find myself saying I've taken some of my favorite shots ever, but there are worse problems and its a good feeling to express after the most recent experience.