I have photographed a hundreds of weddings under my own company, and hundreds more as a second shooter for friends. However, A & J will always have a place in my heart. When I met these two, I was working as a salaried hotel sales manager. These two actually had their reception at the hotel I worked at. I distinctly remember hearing them talking to my friend, Sydney (the catering manager), about being stressed about finding a photographer. They had been together something like 11 years and had two kids, so while a big fun party with great photos was part of their dream for their wedding, they were hoping to find a diamond in the rough! ENTER ME (he says in parentheses)!
When the catering manager pointed at me and said "that guy over there is getting really good at photography and could definitely make great photos for you!" I freaked out. Wedding photography is not just taking pictures, it's scheduling, anticipation, people skills, and requires a knowledge for handling certain lighting conditions (and bringing light if that's what's needed), and business management. I spent hours and hours trawling the internet for forums, instructional videos, educational blog posts, and ANY pro who would share their experiences with me. That's where I discovered the r/weddingphotography subreddit. I met some people there who helped an annoying little fledgling and have become lifelong friends (I'm looking at you, Evan Rich).
Before, during, and after this wedding I learned a so much, but most importantly, I learned I really love weddings. Selfishly, they are nice for me to step back and remember my partner and I were married and we were this ga-ga for each other before, and still are, but nice to remember it. At a wedding everyone is happy, drinks flow (most times), and good times are had by all. It was the best.
That started me down the path I am still on today.
Below are a few images I still like from this wedding.
**WARNING: The colors/white balance/editing ARE NOT COHESIVE AT ALL**
Gear used (I'm pretty sure this is right)
Sony Alpha a77
Sony Alpha a56
Sony Alpha DT 16-50mm/2.8
Yongnuo flashes... like 6
Oh boy. Here we go...
This first image in black and white is my big grand intro in off camera flash and trying to replicate so many amazing hair spray photos. I don't think I nailed it, but honestly, I'm still proud of young Eric for risking it, and getting something kind of cool? LOL.
This little girl was the daughter of bride, and she was a riot. She had this air about her that commanded the room, while also drawing attention to how adorable and happy she was for her parents to be married. Also, the face-smushing photo in conjunction with the one above it is a favorite sequence of mine ever.
In the upper two photos you'll see still two of my favorite wedding images. The left image is actually a miscalculation of how to take the photo; it was very dark and I lowered my shutter speed to something really slow. The dress and bride stayed in focus, but you're able to see the speed and flurry of hands as the bridesmaids try to get the dress all situated and ready! Then in the right photo you have the bridesmaids face after she realizes they are 15 minutes late to the ceremony. And the other two photos below are just great candids, I think!
There are no images from the ceremony that I found to be anything remarkable. They turned out good enough for sure, but I was focused mostly on the couple rather than the couple/bridal party/guests/etc. However the pre-reception and the reception itself had some good ones I still love. Remember how I said I love moments? Look at this first one below: it's true life for a father trying really hard to get some food on his wedding day, while still doing wedding stuff, like high fives, chatting, and the like. The other ones are just fun as well.
I hope you liked this -- remember the quality/color/editing of the images is not representative of my work now! LOL. But I still love some of these moments <3