Christchurch wedding photographer - I never planned on being one. Ever. I remember studying for my Diploma in Photographic Imaging at CPIT in Christchurch, meeting our wedding photography tutor Tony Stewart and rolling my eyes at the idea of having to photograph a 'fake' wedding for our class assessment. Looking back now, I can't believe I had such a clueless perspective on wedding photography.
Two months after starting our wedding photography class I handed in my final 20-wedding photos for the class assessment. In my mind, wedding photography was done and dusted. I was never going to point a lens at a bride and groom again, let alone become a Christchurch wedding photographer!
At year end I graduated. Not long afterwards Tony sat me down and convinced me to come along and see what photographing a wedding was really all about. I was reluctant, but what did I have to lose?
As they say, the rest is history. Six years on, I am more than happy being a Christchurch wedding photographer. And here's why...
1. Weddings are amazing events
No two weddings are ever the same. The bride and groom are always different; the guests are always different; the locations are different; the decorations are different and more often than not, the ceremonies are different. This makes weddings a visual smorgasbord to photograph and I love the visual variety it provides me.
2. Being chosen as the photographer
I'm always humbled when a bride and groom choose me out of all the other wedding photographers out there. It's a big responsibility and it comes with serious karma.
3. Capturing wedding day stories
Weddings are stories unfolding before my eyes. Being tasked with capturing those stories is amazing.
4. Witnessing a celebration
For me a wedding is really a celebration of two people's lives coming together. Being able to witness that is pretty special.
5. Meeting wonderful people
You meet some amazing people as a wedding photographer, doing some really interesting things with their lives. Even today, I still have some past wedding clients who I stay in touch with.
6. Choking up
Yeah, it's happened. I've choked back tears at a wedding.
7. Spending time with the bride
I never realised this until I began photographing weddings, but as the photographer you often get these quite moments with the bride that no one else gets on the wedding day.
8. I became a better photographer
Technically speaking, photographing weddings can be tough. You can go from being inside a church which is really dark (like ISO 3200 dark), to bright, mottled outside light in the space of 90-seconds. Being able to deal with that on the fly and still capture good photos, is a learned skill.
9. I became a better business person
Running my own wedding photography business taught me to stay true to the type of wedding photography work I like to create and that my brand is me. The sooner I realised these two things, the easier my life became.
10. Creating memories
When all is said and done, I'm in the business of creating memories. Wedding photos forever connect a bride and groom to one of the biggest days in their lives. Knowing I created those photos is a great feeling.