Tuesday, 6 December 2011

A nice day for a white wedding...

I have just flown about 18.5 thousand miles in the last two weeks, shot some great weddings, and seen some amazing places. While chatting to a very nice lady on my flight home from Rio, she asked me a really, really smart question:

"You must have seen so many weddings, so what makes a great wedding?"

I told her all about the weddings we had shot, and all the beautiful places and things we had seen, but I didn't really answer her question. The truth is I had never thought about it before. I thought about it long and hard, (I had about 10 hours) and then started to write.

Ultimately, I think it's pretty hard to have a conclusive answer as to exactly 'what' makes a wedding great. I feel that Maria and I are very lucky that we get to see so many, all with their own unique twists and styles. It's incredible to be a fly on the wall, and see people we know, or maybe have just met on literally the happiest, most fantastic day of their lives. But amidst all the details; those handcrafted invites, the table decorations, the dress or even the peonies you scoured every local flower market to find, it is sometimes all too easy to forget about the thing that truly makes a wedding great... the people.

Now, I don't just mean the Bride and Groom, but everyone surrounding them. The journey it takes for all these wedding guests to meet up for this one special event is incredible. In fact, it's actually remarkable when you actually think about it. A wedding is creating a moment in history that will never happen again. Families unite and embrace a merging of cultures in a way that would never normally happen. Friends and family meet others who's lives may never have crossed paths before. When you consider that, a wedding is less a glorified party and more a life changing event for everybody concerned.

The reason I say this with such conviction is simply the last two weddings we shot. Danny and Miriam in New York, and Daniel and Adriana in Buzios, Brazil. I think between the two sets of guests, we must have pretty much covered every language, culture and country. The speeches at both weddings told of people's lives and the moves they made across country or even internationally. Tales of how friendships were made, how groups were formed, and how paths were created to lead to this moment.

By the end of my flight, (and having sat waiting for Maria to arrive for a few hours in Manchester!) I feel like I had my answer. So, Jenny, from flight BA248 here goes...

I think the thing that makes weddings great are the people in them, those who surround it, and the stories that took them there. All the people that are invited to weddings are in someway connected to the bride and groom throughout their lives. If we imagine each person, each relationship to be a beautiful tiny piece of colorful mosaic, then what a wedding does, is brings all those tiny pieces of life together. Incredibly, the simple love of just two people somehow acts as a glue to hold these relationships together, and interweave all those incredible stories. The great thing about a wedding, is that it is blank canvas where everything finally falls into place.

Nick x
*photo not by us - if this is your image, please let us know so that we can credit you properly*


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