This post is a long time coming, because I wanted to make sure I got the words right to explain how exceptional this wedding day was. Here’s the thing – and let me get really real for a moment – in this industry all wedding vendors are selling that idea of the “perfect day”. Brides stress about every detail being perfect, they obsess over the smallest decision, fearful that one tiny hitch has the potential to unravel their wedding.
This is real life. Stuff happens.
We’ve photographed weddings where the groom didn’t realize until he was about to walk the aisle that the wedding bands were left at home – 2,000 miles away. A mom of a bride had to sew up the back of a wedding dress when the dress maker forgot to put in a eyelet for a buttonhole. We’ve even dealt with wedding crashers that left the venue in handcuffs. And there were probably dozens of tiny crises we weren’t even aware of. My point is, as much as you can try to prepare for every aspect of the day, sometimes stuff happens that’s beyond your control. And when it does, you can choose to let it mar your day, or you can take a deep breath, and keep rolling with the punches, and focus on the good. Luckily at weddings, there’s always lots of good to focus on.
In every event I mentioned above, our clients handled their challenges with an exceptional amount of grace, wit, and good humor. And that’s truly a life lesson for all of us.
We are often asked when we meet with couples if we have any “horror stories”. The boring answer is no, we don’t. Of course we have stories. But thankfully our clients keep them from being classified in the “horror” genre.
Shannon and Dean planned an intimate, laid back wedding aboard the Infinity Yacht with their children, family and friends. We arrived at the Westin Book-Cadillac to photograph their preparations and it soon became apparent that there was a problem – Dean’s son, Bradley, was suffering from a serious allergic reaction to medication. Within a short time, his condition escalated to the point that he needed to be rushed to Children’s Hospital. Shannon’s dad nearly missed walking her down the aisle as a result. The timeline for the day strayed off course. And then, to top it all off, it rained on their cruise.
And it was still a glorious day.
Because Bradley was brave enough to go to the hospital without his dad. Because Shannon’s dad did arrive in time to walk her down the aisle. Because Shannon & Dean dancing outside in the rain in the middle of Lake St. Clair was possibly the most romantic and moving moment of the entire day. And because through it all, Shannon and Dean were the epitome of grace.
This wedding was one of the highlights of our year.
Emerald City Designs created these beautiful cream-and-green bouquets.
Shannon told us at their consultation that they weren’t sure if they were going to do a first dance, because she said she was afraid she would cry too much. It never officially even made our copy of the timeline, but then, quite abruptly the sky opened up and this happened. You know what’s good at hiding tears? Random rainfall!
These first dance images give me goosebumps. I don’t think it gets more perfect than this.
Almost on cue, the rain stopped, the sun came back out, and the party continued.
I wanted to end this by quoting some of the email Shannon sent us the day after her wedding:
Dean & I are on the plane headed to San Fran–finally we can relax
We both wanted to thank you for your AMAZING work and efforts yesterday–you helped us to remain at ease and enjoy our day – even with the chaos and unfortunate events regarding Dean’s son Bradley.
We appreciate your patience and being able to roll with us despite…
– disrupted and shortened timelines
– a very ill child
– a slightly anxious bride
– heat and humidity
– rain, etc…
…even with all of that going on– it was a perfect day!
The “First Look” moment was unforgettable and gave us a chance to remember what we were there for…thank you for that.
The dance in the rain to our original wedding song, “This Year’s Love” by David Gray was also one of our most beloved moments…
Dean couldn’t stop thanking me for pushing to book with you guys…best decision ever! Thank you both again so very much….Best day ever! BTW, our guests continually commented on how wonderful you both are!
Shannon & Dean – THANK YOU. Getting to know you both was a privilege and are so glad we were able to photograph your wedding day. We wish you and your family all the best.
I tucked some lenses into my bag, locked the door, and left. The weather was sunny and mild, especially for... more