Thursday, July 21, 2011

Personal: The Memory Catcher

I walked slowly dragging my feet one behind the other. I catched a glimpse of my reflection in a window and chuckled. It looked like I got run over by a train, I was covered in sweat, my knees were bruised and my blisters had blisters. Yeah, pretty sexy. And then I wondered,  Why in the world do I choose to do this to myself? What possesses me to do this for a living? And darn, why didn't we park closer?  As I pondered over all this, Peter reached for my hand.

When I tell people I'm a wedding photographer I get two reactions. There is the...Oh that's nice, so what else do you do, what is your real job? Because obviously photography is not a real job right? You just snap a few pictures burn a disc and you're done. There are also the ones that think photography is such a glamorous and romantic profession.

It's in moments like this I wished they were right. Unfortunately just one look at my apparence after a wedding day is enough to toss those ideas out the door. So why do I do it?  I was pondering over this very thing when Peter reached to hold my hand as we walked to the truck after a wedding day.   The faint sound of the music filled air.  I was tired, more tired than I ever thought I could be after a day of shooting. Yet my heart was joyful. I held my camera tightly, and I was overwhelmed to think that I had their precious memories at my fingertips. In those moments I realized I was the catcher and memory keeper.  They depended on me.

I get to capture people when they're the happiest.  Being a romantic at heart, I love the look of a mother helping her child put on her cinderella dress. The look of groom when he sees his bride for the first time is priceless. Oh, and those instants when a father is about to hand away his precious daughter can only be treasured memories. I have been known to cry during the first dance or the father daughter song. Thankfully I have my camera to hide behind. My camera is an extension of heart. With every click a piece of me gets embedded into the picture, and that right there is enough for me.  The stress, the sick to my stomach feeling and blisters are all worth it, when you measure them against the face of a bride when she sees her wedding pictures.  That is why I chose to be a wedding photographer.

True, it's no glamorous profession, I won't win a nobel prize for it, neither will everyone respect what I do. Yet to know that this couple, their children and their children's children will be able to look through their wedding album and feel the love. That is enough for me.

So holding hands Peter and I walked back to the truck and under the stars with the faint music in the background he asked me to dance.  I love and I am loved and that right there is the essence of a wedding photographer.

Medford & Ashland Wedding Photographer

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