On our website in one of the galleries we have a quote from us of something that we say at every single workshop we teach. It says, “Life goes on and this moment is gone and that moment is gone. But photography steps in and says not this one. This moment stays.” That is the power of what we all do.
This past week we were reminded so powerfully of how important this thing we get to do with photography really is, when we got an email from our sweet bride Maria. We photographed her wedding this April down in Texas, and it’s kind of interesting that this morning as I’m writing this to you we find ourselves waking up in Texas again. It just makes me think of her all the more. That’s because the email that we got from her was to let us know that her father had passed away suddenly and unexpectedly, and they were all still reeling from the loss.
I can’t tell you how many times over our past 10 years of shooting weddings that our photos have wound up being the last photos that were ever taken of someone…grandparents, parents, brothers, sisters, maid of honor, the best man. I think on a wedding day it can be so easy & tempting to turn the day into just a styled photo shoot of the bride & groom. But friends, there is SO much life going on all around us on those days. Moments that people will never get back. So let us pause and soak that in. Let us breathe and slow down long enough to see that happening. To bear witness to lives well lived & loved. Lord give us eyes that we might see, so that we can help others remember. In her email, Maria said the following. I pray that we will ALL think about her words, the next time we pick up a camera.
“My dad had so much fun at my wedding. And Justin took the greatest photo of him in the chapel when he was getting ready with the guys. We used it at the funeral. He is gazing into the light and casting a shadow on the wall. It’s the greatest photo of him and I love it. It’s like he’s looking right at heaven. I wish I had showed it to him! He would have loved it too. Then of course there are the awesome photos of Sergio helping Dad get ready….they are just the best and really show the bond they had. He was very proud to be a part of it all and you guys did a beautiful job of documenting that. I attached them because I wanted you to really see your work and the impact it has on people.”
This moment stays friends.