Last updated on July 28th, 2023 at 02:03 pm
I have a confession.
I’ve never been that into weddings. I wasn’t even into my wedding. I hated the expectations of doing things just because that’s what others do–I’ve been a rebel for as long as I can remember.
Even with my professional photography dream, I refused to do things if the reasoning was “because that’s how it’s always been.” But sometimes, your dream process makes you eat your words.
I’ve said, “No weddings!” pretty much my entire professional photography career.
Not because I am a “Love Grinch.” Well. Maybe I’m kind of a wedding Grinch. Partly because of the reality show Bridezillas. Have you seen those? But mostly because it was an enormous responsibility. There are no second takes, no re-shoots. If you miss a moment in one of the most memorable days of a couple’s life, it’s gone. And when I do things, I want to do them well.
The other big factor was my health and managing my Lyme disease.
I try not to let my health dictate my career. But a year or two or three ago, I couldn’t have even dreamed of having a body strong enough to handle a wedding.
Some years ago, my friend and wedding photography mentor Hope Duffy invited me to be a second shooter for a wedding she was booked as the main photographer.
She is terrific at her craft and creating images from couples’ dreams. Watching her work was nothing short of awesome. The couple and their family were warm and welcoming. The location was stunning, and Hope knows how to manage it all while keeping everyone laughing. She was so amazing to be mentored by. She was inspiring and a little intimidating. I enjoyed the whole process, but my body took about a month to recover.
Enter Erica, a beautiful inside-and-out friend from high school in Germany.
She’s one of the people who helped me get through the divorce with my sanity intact. She and Rob have an incredible love story. We’re talking storybooks, feature films, and make-you-sigh-inside “love story.”
When they got engaged, and she asked me about wedding photography, I knew I wanted to do this for them.
They’re very sophisticated but also down-to-earth and laid back. Her sense of style is classic, and I knew that the dress and details would be stunning. And the fact that they’re both ridiculously photogenic doesn’t hurt.
I flew down to Florida for their big day and reconnected with friends from high school. It was loaded with fun.
I really wasn’t sure if my body could handle it. My backpack that day weighed around 25 pounds. But everyone was supportive and kind and helped wherever they could.
So the girl that said “no weddings” might be eating her words.
My downtime was just a few days. I loved being there. I loved helping with things outside my job description. I loved playing with the kids and helping them open up so the photos would show their true selves. I loved thinking outside the box.
I loved being challenged in ways I never am in the studio. I loved editing the photos! I loved delivering them. I loved making the video and finding the best way to tie music and words together to emulate the feelings of being there on that special day.
Here are a few photos:
Erica and Rob’s beautiful wedding cured me of my wedding Grinchiness. Excuse me while I chomp on my words for a while.
Iman Woods is an American artist who specializes in pin-up photography. Through a unique and therapeutic process, she’s spent over a decade in perfecting, Iman helps women undo the damage from a negative self-image and unrealistic beauty industry expectations. She helps women embrace their own style of beauty and see themselves in a new light. You can find her on her website, ImanWoods[dot]com.
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