Category Archives: FILM
Although I crossed the bridge 15 years ago, a 6 person wedding in the middle of gorgeous Northwest nature is probably what I would do if I were getting married right now. The simplicity just hung over me, much like the wind in the gorge. A dad and his kids, a bride, her self-described “soul-sister” as officiant, and open sky. The modern elopement, for lack of a better term, has brought into sharp focus the clarity of why I love weddings. People, commitment, love. A movable, human home. That’s why I love weddings. And seeing as how the bride, groom, officiant, and I also all happen to be photographers and friends… this truly was a rare honor.
Dad trying to listen to whispered secrets with the officiant, a rock throwing contest, the vows as paper airplane sent into the gorge, wedding pie, the instant images, the tears and laughter, and that first dance at sunset as the kids looked on. I’ll will definitely remember them all with the greatest of fondness. Damn, I’m a lucky guy to do what I do.
A friend of mine wrote a song that was going through my head all through the ceremony, and I thought I would share it:
“Yes I’ll build a house inside your heart…”
Our wedding was all about the 4 of us becoming a family. Having the privacy of an imitate wedding let us focus on each other, and that was really meaningful and special. Jay asked for my advice for other brides… The only thing I can say is celebrate what is most important to you. Have a wedding that feels right for you. Enjoy it, be present, and have a really awesome photographer so you can relive it over and over.
I did not pay her to say that last part 😉
Polaroids, iPhone, and digital are all mixed in, in case anyone wonders why some images look different.
If you’re getting married in Oregon, rain is always in the equation. When you’re getting married on the Oregon Coast… well, let’s just say you should bring your sense of adventure. Thankfully, Russell and Jenelle handled the rain and cold with grace. That isn’t to say it wasn’t a complicating factor, or that sun wasn’t the preferred forecast. When she planned her wedding in this gorgeous state park on the Oregon Coast, I would assume Jenelle hoped for clear skies and warm breezes to go with the sweeping views of the sea, and the flowers in the pond (more on that in a moment). I would imagine, if you ask them, most brides will tell you that a wedding changes by the hour in the planning stage, and sometimes even faster the day of. Being light on your feet is a fantastic quality to have as a bride, and it certainly helps as a wedding photographer. Go with it. Roll with the punches. The details of your wedding are all important, seeing as how they all come together to create the vehicle to showcase your commitment to each other, but never forget this… saying “I Do” is the point. Not the perfect day, not the perfect weather, and the point is decidedly not to have everything go as planned. The point, to quote my talented friend, Caroline, is to look at each other and begin to “build a house within your heart.” Ultimately, Jenelle decided if it was going to rain, she could improvise. Bare feet, leg-warmers, and that pretty pond I mentioned earlier. She ditched the umbrella. Benj and I stood with our new friends in the rain and loved every single minute of it, even carrying 4 film cameras at a time. You can read Jenelle’s advice about weather and weddings in the winter/spring 2013 Portland Bride&Groom.
Life has a funny way of being unpredictable, as I’m sure most of us have experienced, and this wedding day was no exception. Just as we all made our peace with the weather… the speeches were given, the food was served, and the day was winding down, the sun broke through, even if it was only a bit. Being ready to go when the moment presents itself is half of having a sense of adventure. Closing out the day on the beach was the reward for Russell and Jenelle’s willingness to chase the sunshine. After all, life itself is a wonderful, albeit unpredictable adventure.
Russell and Jenelle, thanks for having me and Benj as a part of your adventure.
ENGAGEMENT VENUE – Shelton McMurphey Johnson House
VENUE – SHORE ACRES STATE PARK, COOS BAY OREGON
SECOND SHOOTER – Benj Haisch
A thousand thanks to my fellow bearded homie, Benj Haisch for shooting this wedding with me, film in the rain and all, not to mention all the creepy/great fun shooting double-exposure polaroids at the casino the night before 🙂 Your light leaks made my day.