Over the last several years, I have often been asked about my availability to photograph weddings.
I have always answered the same way. Weddings? I didn’t do weddings.
That changed this winter. I’m now taking wedding contracts, and in fact I have signed with my first two brides. And I’m really excited! It feels exactly right.
So then why, in the 11 years since I started getting really serious about photography and the 4 years since I started taking professional contracts, did I never say yes to a wedding?
Short answer: I was terrified.
Wedding photography is a huge responsibility.
I have always hesitated before taking on something new for clients, because I want to be able to give them what they really need from their photographer, and I can’t stand the thought that I might not provide it.
And hey — your wedding day is one of the most important days in your life. It changes your life. It’s not just a big party (that too): it’s a day for publicly declaring a commitment between two people that will forever shape their friendships, their family, and often even their careers and life prospects.
And the photographer’s job?
The photographer’s job is to make works of art that will recall the events and emotions of the day, bringing a smile (or a tear?) every time anyone looks at the resulting album or prints.
It’s a big deal.
The last many years I have focussed on portraits and events, honing my skills. And hey — I’m all about portraits, and I love running around capturing the spirit of an event! I am definitely going to keep doing these things.
But! I recently realized that the skills I use in those contexts — the ones used to capture beautiful portraits, or portray the emotions and personalities at a party or show or reception — are the very skills I would need at a wedding!
And thinking about that, I recently started saying “yes”.
I still have lots to learn, and I’m still terrified. But… I’m ready!