To answer that question, I need to start at the beginning…
When I first started photographing weddings, I literally dreamt about photography. And during the day, I needed to have a camera in my hands.
It was also the year of my own wedding so I was fully immersed in the wedding world. I consumed every book, course and video that I could get my hands on. I created vision boards, planned styled shoots and found inspiration in poetry and lyrics like the Avett Brothers “…decide what to be and go be it!”
During that initial year of shooting weddings full-time, my calendar was fully booked and my very first two weddings were published!
For almost 10 years, I’ve spent most weekends capturing brides walking down the aisle – sometimes with her dad, sometimes with her mom and sometimes solo, proud, tall.
I’ve photographed the most resolute of grooms succumbing to tears. Mothers dancing with their sons and daughters leading their dads to the dance floor.
Siblings and childhood friends supporting their bride and groom, bestowing words of wisdom to a room filled with laughter and tears. Aunts and uncles, cousins and grandparents – all decked out to celebrate people they’ve known since birth.
At every single wedding, I’ve held back tears, and other times just let the floodgates open! I’ve photographed weddings throughout the Northeast, Colorado and tropical destinations.
I’ve never been in it for the accolades but if you’ll allow me to toot my own horn for a minute, I’ve consistently earned local and regional “Best Of” titles and have been published online and in print dozens of times.
I’ve been brought to my knees by some of the reviews from my couples and their families, thanking me for my patience, kindness, organization and artistry.
My photos have already proven to be the heirlooms I intended as some of the people who have passed through my lens, have since passed on.
(I save the notes of gratitude coupled with mourning I receive from my couples each time this happens).
Things started to shift in 2021 when I photographed over 30 weddings (compared to my typical 15 weddings per year).
Going into that year, I felt I owed it to every single couple whose wedding plans were thwarted by Covid. And I needed to make up for the loss of creativity and connection from 2020.
But by the end of 2021, I was completely burnt out. The world was (is?) still trying to figure things out. On paper, I was ready for the post-covid wedding boom, but looking back I was emotionally ill-prepared.
I wanted to throw in the towel. I DID throw in the towel, proclaiming “I’m retiring from weddings”!
I didn’t completely leave weddings but last year I turned more of my focus and energy towards photographing families. I photographed six beautiful weddings in 2022 and one just last week.
I envisioned being at this point feeling confident to walk away from weddings…
…ending on the highest of notes after a wedding in the Dominican Republic, capturing people I love and have known almost my whole life.
I pictured myself writing a post like this explaining that I’ll no longer be accepting wedding inquiries, but something shifted again.
I can’t help but think of all the work I’ve put into getting to this point. (30 year old me would be SO proud!) All the relationships I’ve built with couples and the connections I’ve made in the wedding industry. The gift I’ve given so many people! That fire that’s still in my belly.
So, to finally answer my own question…
I can’t walk away from it, not yet.
If you’re planning a 2023 or 2024 wedding, please reach out! I’d love to talk with you more about your vision for your most special day.