This image was a fan-favorite for so many. Not only for those at the wedding, but those that saw the image after the fact.
In all honesty, there’s one thing that sets great photographers apart from good ones: the ability to anticipate actions. Throughout wedding days, there is one question I am constantly asking myself. What happens next, and where do I want to be for that?
As the party bus pulled up to this party, I remembered that the bridal party were having the party of their lives, so I wanted to be prepared for them to bounce off the bus with enthusiasm. As the second shooter for this wedding (ily Sarah Karnas) I had developed the persona of not being important, which is always my goal at weddings. Why? Because if I’m not important, people don’t pose for me. They don’t take me too seriously. They let themselves be freed of expectations or self-consciousness. They get to be themselves.
This paid off in this moment, when the best man bounces off the party bus, cigar in mouth. I sense that he’s gearing up to snag the bride’s veil, so I position myself in the middle of the moment, use an upwards angle to capture the strength and power that comes with wearing a veil, and the wind did the rest.
What followed is one of my favorites of 2020. In a year when everything seemed hopeless and lost, this was a moment in which we were reminded there is still joy here.
This image was a by-product of years of reminding myself that all the little things matter. An being exactly where I want to be when I want to be there is what creates images that last lifetimes. This will tell stories of who these people are when they’re old and grey.
So prepare your couples for you to be in the center of the action, to be close up and intimate for everything that unfolds, but to never have to pose for you. And your preparation will pay off in the form of images that tell stories for years to come.
Hey! I'm Makayla, a wedding photojournalist based in Duluth, MN and Saint Paul, MN.
I believe that stories are best told untouched, undirected, and with intentionality and meaning.
This blog is a space to share advice for couples about weddings, advice for photographers about witnessing events with intention, and steps to create decisions based on your values and what matters most to you.
Grab your favorite beverage, pull up a chair, and let's get to know each other.
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