NEWS FLASH: First Place

Well it has come to that time of the year where we gather our best images and send them off to be judged by a contest jury of our peers--to see how we look at the wedding world, to see how we are motivated, to see if we are in the groove.

I have had the honor of being asked to judge a contest of great photographers, known collectively as the ISPWP, or International Society of Professional Wedding Photographers. It is an exclusive group--all with at least 2 years experience and at least 40 weddings as the primary photographer. I feel proud to be part of such a distinguished group.

My favorite category is The Decisive Moment. I was honored to win First Place in the last contest for the image above. I am proud of that, for many reasons, but mostly because it allows me to demonstrate my photojournalism roots.

I love all aspects of my wedding photography--the fashion portraits, the story documentation, and hey, I love eating cake at the end too!. But the golden nuggets for me are the decisive moments. A decisive moment is a moment that tells a whole story while catching an action at its peak. It is an image that can never be repeated. It is unique. It speaks as much of who the author is, as it describes a moment. Someone with a photojournalism mindset is always prepared for these times. Where others might not see the possiblities, someone who shoots weddings with photojournalism in mind will find the possibilities in any part of the day.

The image above happened on a day when the remnants of a hurricane were passing through Massachusetts. I challenged myself to find an image that could convey the challenges of that day. The time came when the bride exited the car for the chapel. The ushers reaction is exactly at the moment when the umbrella collapses . It is a fun moment, accented with the bride’s polka dot rain boots. It is a one of a kind moment.

This is why I love what I do. I love the images that stand alone. I love the images that never be duplicated. This is what I strive for when I shoot.

So I will be anxious to judge my colleagues moments as I pour through the hundreds of photos that will be soon before me. They are moments that set us apart from each other and define who we are, even as together, we strive to give our brides and grooms the beautiful images that tell the story of their very important day.



David Pullum said...

Be kind to mine David,

David Pullum said...

well done David,

John Spink said...


You could say, I was BLOWN AWAY by that first place picture. Nice frame my friend. Nothing like a real photojournalism background to make pictures like that as opposed to the many wedding photojournalists out there who have never worked for a magazine or newspaper. Lord knows how many "weather features" we've made through the years. Merry Christmas and give me a call when you catch your breath.

Amy-jo Tatum/Bride Chic said...

Love this photo!