On Thanksgiving, I photographed a wedding for a Canadian couple (judging from their accents) People who get married here on Caye Caulker aren't looking for a traditional wedding, so it follows suit that their photos won't be traditional either, which is a good thing, since my photos are left of center.
I never look at the groom, it doesn't matter what he looks like, its the bride that's the most important thing in wedding photos. He could have a big ole green ting dangling out of his nose and I wouldn't catch it until I'm editing after the event. Thank goodness for photoshop.
Lots of factors affect shooting these weddings. The first is the low light at sunset and my reluctance to use a flash. Flash adds bounce and looks so fake, makes shiny faces. The breeze, which direction its coming from, and at what time. Usually the breeze comes from the east, they couple is facing west and so the bride's hair is blowing over her face, the flowers are flying away, dresses are flipping up. I've photographed more than one bride's lacy panties (oops!)
The moment is here and gone, never to come back again. The kiss, the kiss, the kiss, don't miss the kiss, is my mantra. Don't invade, is my rule. Leading up to the event I'm probably more nervous than the bride. I have to take 2-3 hours before the shoot, lay down, rest and meditate, or I feel like a wreck inside. I need to be aware, alert to capturing these moments, and not mentally fatigued. I don't operate very well on empty. I'm looking for that one moment, that one special feeling, the one photo you would pay $300 for.
Is it worth it? Yes. When I give them their photos, they ooh and aaaawww over them (and then they pay me) I relax.
I've come to realize I'm not a photographer, I'm a painter with a camera.