Most couples will think of their wedding day as one of the biggest days in their lives. Rosie and Jason realized that it was so much more than that…it was one of the biggest days in their amazing families’ lives too. Rosie is from New York and Jason is from Massachusetts, so rather than picking a venue near either side, they picked a spot in Connecticut that was equidistant for both families. To make sure everyone got there safe and sound they had busses chartered to bring in their over 300 guests. Each and every one of these guests was truly an important person to Rosie and Jason.
The ceremony ended later than expected, leaving us with only 45 minutes before the sun went down for family formals and bridal portraits. I suggested to Rosie and Jason that we do one big shot with all their family members, then do their bridal portraits with the remaining sunlight, and then get the rest of the individual family shots at the beautiful lobby of the Riverside during the cocktail hour. They were concerned though that if they went with that plan, many of their dear guests might miss their photo, so they elected to take ALL of the 50+ different formal shots before we took a single bridal portrait of just the two of them. But in the end, Providence rewarded them for their patience: right as we finished the family formals a spectacular sunset painted the sky beautiful shades of pink, orange, and purple, making a perfect backdrop for bridal portraits. We would likely have missed this wonderful photo opportunity had Rosie and Jason not put their family first.
My second shooter extraordinaire, Shawn Black, and I then drove over to the Riverview for the cocktail hour and reception. Rosie and Jason’s 44-person bridal party, which included 15 VERY well-behaved children, patiently worked with me to get all the bridal party formal shots, while Shawn went and took beautiful detail shots of the reception hall. One of my favorite videographers to work with, Elena of In Focus Video, was there covering the wedding as well. Elena is a photographer’s dream to work with because she is always careful not to get in your shot and always asks in advance if it is ok for her to use video light which makes a huge difference!
After finishing the bridal party formals, several of the family members came up to me and told me about some special surprises they had planned for Rosie and Jason. This is always a good thing to do because then I can make sure that my second shooter, the videographer, and I are all in the best locations possible to capture the surprise. For example, the bridal party members put together a full fledged 20-minute dance show complete with costume changes, candles, and dandia raas sticks. Because I knew in advance how large this production would be, I had my 3 tier step ladder out, which allowed me to take shots from above with my wide angle lens. The wedding continued to be filled with family love, with the MC ending the night with a big hug for Rosie and Jason from everyone. After the reception we went across the street to the Simsbury Inn for the giving away of the bride ceremony where Jason’s parents would officially welcome Rosie into their family. This was such a wonderful tradition to end this incredible family oriented wedding.