Weddings are awesome. I know, I know. As a photographer, I’m sort of supposed to say that. But it’s true- and not [only] for the obvious reasons. Sure, weddings are fun: full of dancing and champagne and family. Big, happy celebrations of finding love and throwing a party. But as a photographer, they’re also a continuous challenge to shoot better, create better, be better. And I do love me a challenge. It’s why weddings feel like such a good fit for me.
I’ve actually been lucky enough to second-shoot weddings with Mark pretty often since my LeahAndMark adventure began eight months ago- awesome locations all over Atlanta and even my first out-of-state wedding in Indiana earlier this summer. But a few weeks ago, my adventures got stepped up a notch when Mark and I flew to Boston to shoot a wedding at Wesleyan University in Connecticut. Um. AWESOME.
See, I have this thing for traveling, no matter how far- (or close-) flung those travels may be. I love packing. I even love airports. Seriously, even in hours-long lines at TSA checkpoints, I’ve got a ridiculous smile on my face. Take my shoes off? YES! LOVE TO! Search my bag full of underwear in front of a hundred people? GO RIGHT AHEAD, I’M FLYING SOMEWHERE! And traveling with Mark can be quite glamorous: Delta Gold status and pre-boarding perks. (Though no champagne and hot towels this trip- next time, I say.) When we landed in Boston, Mark humored my giddiness from being someplace new and we drove into the heart of the city and had lunch, real Bahstan style, at Quincy Market. Like a true tourist, I bought souvenirs and bombarded my husband back home with a constant stream of cell phone pictures. Then we drove down into Connecticut. I saw exit signs for New York City (which made me ridiculously happy), and I discovered that Mark is a serial radio channel surfer. Oh. And we drove right through a tornado warning, in Northern Connecticut. Because apparently, we bring so much Awesome with us to these weddings, even the skies spontanteously combust into Awesomeness. Or scariness. Something.
Whenever I shoot a wedding, whether I’m second-shooting with Mark or running the show myself, the whole day becomes a constant quest to do better than I’ve ever done before. I owe that to my clients, to my boss, to myself. I sprawl across the floor. I sprint from one end of the venue to the other. (Repeatedly. And again. And again.) I climb on things. I can’t just sit back timidly and wait for the shots to happen in front of me. I have to anticipate them. Be two steps ahead, to catch them before they’re gone again. And, as I’ve learned from the moment I set foot in our old Goat Farm studio back in January, I have to make them. Being a photographer isn’t just about catching moments as they unfold before your eyes. It’s about MAKING photos that tell you- immerse you- in those moments. And while most weddings follow the same loose formula: flowers, vows, the kiss, and cake (cake!), everything else is different. Different moments, different dynamics. And it’s my job to make something different every single time I shoot a wedding. Or anything. It’s the best part about my job, which is saying a lot- I mean, I seriously have a job that lets me travel AND lets me get to know people on such an amazingly personal level. And I get wine. If that’s not winning, I don’t know what is.
Thank you to Mark, for thinking enough of me to take me along. It’s a big deal each and every time I’m asked to work alongside someone at a wedding- you have to have faith that that person, as Mark puts it, doesn’t suck. So thank you. You’re awesome.
Atlanta. Boston. Wedding. Photographer. LeahAndMark. You. Are. Awesome.