When my friend, Jordan and his fiancé, Michell, went looking for a wedding photographer in Sierra Vista he contacted me. See, Jordan is a realtor and shoot some of his real estate listings, so he connected the dots. At the time, I was one of the last guys who wanted to shoot a wedding. In my mind, I did not want to disappoint a bride or her mother, or anyone else in a wedding, for that matter... Thank you reality TV and Hollywood for the wedding photography anxiety!
Why didn't he go looking for anyone else? Why did he come to me? I suppose it was because he enjoyed working with me, liked my reliability as real estate photographer, and had seen some of my posts of pics of my son playing soccer and my daughter performing in marching band. Looking back, I don't remember asking. I was just concerned about performing.
After hearing Jordan tell me that it was a small wedding and everyone was easy going, I began to relax. Then I remembered that a very good friend of mine, from my college days, was a top wedding photographer in the D.C. area for many years. Upon remembering that, I picked up the phone and called him. It was a great call. He literally spent three and a half hours on the phone with me data dumping about a decade worth of work. Of course, I had a notebook in hand a filled many pages. With that call, my anxiety subsided and I was ready to go forth a serve my friend and his family.
Wedding day came and everything went wonderfully. I spent time with Michelle while her friends poured their love out on her. They had quite a good time preparing. All I asked was that they choose a place in her home with as much natural light as possible, which they did. They chose the kitchen and it was great because there was plenty of room for me to quietly orbit around them and document the bride getting ready. Watching the time, I excused my self and headed over to where Jordan was preparing.
The men getting ready was much different. It was men men getting ready... not a lot of smiles or laughs, just ties being tied and a special gift from grandpa. Regardless,, I did my thing and worked around documenting Jordan's perspective in preparing for his big evening. Oh, and there was a little time to shoot some pool, which reminded me a little of Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack hanging out before an engagement.
By now, both the bride and groom where photographed preparing for their wedding and it was time to cruise on out to The Leading Room in Sinoita, AZ for a sunset wedding. With sunsets, the clock is ticketing and you don't always get a "sunset" but everything progressed wonderfully and the good Lord painted the sunset as he saw fit for the newly wed, Mr. and Mrs. Jordan Shilt.
Everything went quite well for all who attended and I enjoyed myself quite well. I may have had more fun that if I were simply a guest at the wedding. Jordan and Michelle, and their families, were very happy with their wedding photos and I even ended up with "very professional" type compliments.
Once again I learned that fear steams from ignorance, and with knowledge and solid advice comes confidence. It wasn't easy and my legs were smoked the next day from squatting to take pics, but I'd do it all again and again because it made them happy and I got to be a part of a very special occassion.
Enjoy the photos!