How Photographing Weddings Changed my Perspective as a Bride


A few months ago, I put down my camera and walked down the aisle in a white dress to marry the love of my life. We had an amazing wedding, and it was better than I could have ever expected. Our photographers and friends created pure artistry with the click of a shutter.

For many years, weddings were my bread and butter. When I was first entering the wedding industry, I was very enchanted and mystified by the ethereal imagery that inspired me on wedding blogs. I found the love stories of others to be pure magic; I still do, but what changed was the sort of bride I wanted to be and how I wanted to get married.

I would say that for much of my life, up until my second or third year shooting weddings, I dreamed of a big extravaganza. I envisioned flowers and terrariums covering every surface, a Claire Pettibone gown, a signature cocktail bar, a jazz orchestra, and an array of vintage antiques displayed in the ornate ballroom of my mind. Being a wedding photographer, I was given an inside view to a bride’s world. So much is happening beneath the veil--so many emotions and thoughts are swirling around in the mind of someone about to get married. It ranges from the purest form of bliss to unreasonable stress anxiety.

Don’t get me wrong, every single wedding I’ve shot has been amazing in its own way and every single couple I’ve ever worked with is still happily married. I did learn that I truly wanted things to be simple, easy, relaxed, and to keep costs as inexpensive as possible. After all, it is about a lifetime, not just one day. The last thing I wanted to do was have one of the happiest days of my life be ruined by having things happen a certain way and stress about truly unimportant details. You’ve succeeded if at the end of the day you are married to the one you love.

Initially, I was pushing to elope. There’s something truly romantic about going to city hall in a white dress. We opted to have a wedding, however--and we were very lucky that we had such amazing vendors and friends and family to help make it happen. Toby and I hate planning events--it would not have happened without them. It was meaningful, fun, carefree, uniquely weird, spooky, and lovely. It was perfect.

I guess what I’m getting at is--remember what you and your partner are about and what will make you happy on your wedding day. The industry and wedding apps may tell you things they claim you need to do, but do what makes sense for you and your marriage.


The Girl in the Unicorn Pajamas