I will prefix this post with a fact. My Dad died when I was 2, my Mum when I was 16. I never really got to know who they were, I've hardly got any pictures of them either. This isn't an x-factor type sob story put the hanky away.
Right, let's cut to the chase
The only pictures I have of my parents wedding are as follows:
A traditional cutting the cake picture
A line of old people stood next to my parents, no idea who they are, they all have that tight lipped smile
A picture of my parents on a hill - pretty backdrop, nice sunset, no expression, no laughter, no character
Some groups of people stood in a line looking like they've been told to smile for a wedding picture
Pictures of flowers
Pictures of a cake
Pictures of knives and forks (table settings)
None of these pictures tell me anything about my parents, their day, how they felt or what they were like except at some point they got married, that's my legacy in pictures.
The wedding industry
The wedding industry tells you that you MUST have certain pictures (it did it back then and it continues to do it today), there are blogs written by people who aren't married, aren't photographers and don't have any interest in what you might actually want, there's certainly an interest in pushing the pretty pictures though - they ram sunsets, sparklers, stylized pictures, pictures of cakes and dresses in trees and shoes on fences and photographers fall over themselves to get you those pictures.
It's giving people nothing to look back on, no real thing to look back on anyway. None of these pictures show 'WHO my parents were' or 'HOW they felt', and pictures like that don't show WHO you are or HOW it felt to be at your wedding.
I'd give anything to have some pictures that gave me a sense of feeling, who they were as people. In a world (apparently) full of moment catchers, relaxed documentary and no fuss photographers - there's an unfortunate lack of pictures that actually mean anything or really deliver the goods, and that's really sad.
I wanted to see them looking happy, really happy. I wanted to see them for who they were at one of the happiest times in their life, real genuine smiles and moments of joy.
Real moments, real character
When I talk about moments, I mean it, damn I really mean it. I'd give anything for a picture of my parents really caught up in a moment, or any one of a thousand gestures or looks that actually happened on the day, their character, how they really felt. Saying the word 'moment' means nothing, I'm sure the guy who photographed my parents wedding said it, I'm sure he meant it too the poor disillusioned sod.
I've got a driver (not a chauffeur, I mean a motivation), my driver is I'm there to give people the pictures I'll never have, the personality, the feeling, the character - actual moments, something for kids to look back on, grandkids. WHO you were so people can remember. HOW you felt, so you can remember.
Not the superficial nonsense, not the things, not the place but the feeling, the things that make you who you are, same for your family and friends. They're called memories - proper ones.
Yeah that's what I want to do and now you know why I want to do it.
Woah, that was harder to write than I thought. Thanks for reading.
I'm a Cheshire based rather unique and relaxed documentary wedding photographer, covering weddings across Cheshire, Manchester, The Lakes and the rest of the UK (and Europe). Specialising in real moments and memories from luxury high end weddings to small intimate home ceremonies and elopements. If you want real memories from your wedding day get in touch using the big button above.