Happy Friday, friends!
Yesterday, we shared Dani and Will’s wedding with you. Today, we’re sharing a little behind-the-scenes of what it was like on the other side of the lens for Jordan to be both a groomsman AND one of the photographers. As you know, Amy’s been a bridesmaid in a wedding we’ve shot before, but this was Jordan’s first time! So, what was it like? For starters, it was the nicest Jordan’s ever looked on a wedding day! Not because he doesn’t wear suits or at least a dress shirt and vest most of the time – he does – but because he normally wears slightly looser fitting clothes (especially pants) that won’t rip if he squats quickly to get a shot. So he had to be extra aware all day that he was wearing a suit designed to be worn to a wedding and not exercised in. Ironically, with all the attention he was paying to pant-ripping, he ripped his shirt! What are the odds, right?!
We started the day together, like we always do, in the bride’s room, getting detail shots and getting ready photos of the girls. Normally, Jordan splits when the bride and bridesmaids gets their dresses on to photograph the guys getting ready, but in this case he couldn’t do that, because he was supposed to be IN those shots. So, he stayed with Amy through the girls getting ready photos and then she joined him in the guys’ getting room so he could be in the pictures, too. It was a little strange at first, because he’s so used to walking into the getting room, helping the guys clean it up, opening windows to get great light, directing the guys on where to stand and what to do, and then shooting it. He’s got a routine. A checklist. He does it almost every weekend! Sometimes twice! He still did everything we mentioned above with one exception: Amy shot the whole thing. And that was hard for Jordan. For a guy who’s used to photographing other guys tying their ties and helping each other in suit coats, it was weird being on the other side. A few times, he looked over like he was going to grab his camera, but Amy stopped him with a look of, Don’t forget to be IN this wedding, too, mister!
After the getting ready photos, the first look and the portraits went like they normally do. The only real difference came during the groomsmen photos and big wedding party shot. For the groomsman individual shots, Jordan did them all, then handed off his camera to Amy so Jordan could get a photo of him and just the groom like everyone else. For the group groomsman shots and big bridal party shots, Amy organized (like she always does) and Jordan got the settings on his camera and framing ready to go. That way, when Amy was done, Jordan would jump into the spot on the end she saved for him, he would hand the camera off to her, and we were good to go!
But that shooting face, though…
One of these is not like the other…
It was almost 110 degrees outside when all this was happening. It was H-O-T, you guys, especially in a suit. Luckily, there was an uh-mazing friend of the bride and groom who stayed with Jordan and made sure he had enough water to drink and paper towels to wipe his beady forehead! Speaking of that, that was another trick that came up during the day: looking not like a crazy, sweaty photographer in the photos! Jordan does a LOT of running around and carrying heavy things on the wedding day. We call him the pack mule, because he’s got almost 100 pounds with him at all times between all of our bags and other equipment. Then, add in last-second errands, like, Shoot! Can you run back to the room and get ____________________! And you’ve got yourself a slightly disheveled Jordan by mid-afternoon. Plus, if you know anything about his hair, it’s that he uses product in it. Gel to be exact. 1. Because he likes the 1950’s Mad Men meets Justin Timberlake look. 2. Because his hair is out. of. control. otherwise! It’s like a wild animal. Totally untamed. Which is why Amy calls him “wolfy” when he first wakes up! To combat all this, before he hopped into his photos, because he was starting to look like Jim Carey towards the end of Liar Liar, he’d splash some bottled water in his hands and smooth his poofy hair back down. Problem solved!
Amy shot the ceremony by herself. She did a great job, she really did, but it was hard for Jordan on so many levels. Here are a few of his many thoughts during the ceremony:
While walking down the aisle…
— She’s got her right arm looped through my left, but what should my right hand be doing? At my side? In my pocket? These pictures are forever! There’s also no way anyone else is thinking about this as much as I am! Okay, hand out of pocket is best. Looks the most natural. Here we go!
— Don’t look at Amy’s camera when you’re walking down the aisle. Look off into the crowd and smile. That feels uncomfortable. But I know it’ll look great on camera. Shoot! I just looked at the camera! I hope she got one where I wasn’t!
While standing at the altar…
— Where’s Amy?! Where’s Amy?! There she is! Got get ‘em, girl! You got this!
— Wait?! Where’s Amy! Mom is crying! Kodak moment happening here!
— I’m so hot right now. It’s boiling out here. Bend the knees… bend the knees. Don’t pass out. If you do, Amy will get a picture of it and it’ll end up on the blog!
— Mom’s crying again! Oh, yes, there’s Amy.
— I totally could’ve just peeled off, grabbed my camera and started shooting. Nobody would’ve noticed…
— I’m so glad I didn’t. These vows are beautiful and I’m really loving listening to them and just being present.
— But if I had my iPhone…
— The pastor asked everyone to pray! The kiss is coming! Where’s Amy?! Phew! She’s at the end of the aisle. I bet she loves using my lens.
As soon as the couple was announced, and Jordan got to the end of the aisle, Amy handed him the second camera and he shot the rest of the bridal party and family members coming back down the aisle. Then, we grabbed the bride and groom to sign their license, do some photos with the flower girl and ring bearer that we didn’t get to do earlier in the day, and spent about ten minutes doing some husband and wife portraits… LIVE on Periscope, our new favorite social media app! One guest was even watching us on Periscope on her phone WHILE we she was also watching live in the courtyard. It was like Inception. How crazy cool is technology?!
Up next, grand entrances! We talked to the DJ and changed the order of the entrances so Jordan would be first. That way, he could come in, do a little jig, and then quickly grab his camera to shoot everyone else coming in the reception room. It worked like a charm and the guests thought it was funny, too, watching him go back and forth!
From there, the reception went smoothly and regularly. We ate dinner at our table with the other bridal party members, got up to shoot during first dances, toasts, and cake cutting. After that, we danced the night away. Sometimes with our cameras strapped to our sides to grab candid shots of what was happening around us. Sometimes without. All the time having a blast, because we were with people we absolutely love.
We hope that gives you a little peek at what it was like to be on both sides of the wedding day equation. If you have any questions, ask below and we’ll do our best to answer them! And to see the final product, be sure to check out Dani & Will’s blog post here.