If these last few years have taught us anything, it’s that being flexible really is the key to being happier humans. That can be really hard to do when you’ve planned your dream wedding and a seemingly never-ending pandemic keeps changing your plans, but Denise and Nick are a pure testament to the fact that love trumps location. They hired me several years ago for their Key West wedding but pivoted to other plans, and the next thing I knew, I’m going to Saratoga, baby! What an incredible whirlwind of a wedding it was, too.
I’ll come right out and say it; the clients who let me into their life get 1000% better photos than the ones that consider me just another vendor. In fact, over the years, I’ve gotten pretty good at sniffing out the ones who are just looking for a vendor in a certain price range…that’s not me. I won’t even take those bookings anymore because it’s not fair to the couple or me. My need to create amazing images for my client starts when we connect…and there’s no doubt this was the case with Nick and Denise. I can’t even count how many big-ass belly laughs we had in our time together!
This is a couple with one of those big, loving families you want to be adopted into, and lucky me, I felt that way the entire weekend. From the moment we met up in Long Island to do some pre-wedding photos until the very end of the reception, we had a freaking blast! What a fun weekend, and I’m now an honorary Italian, according to Denise’s uncle!
Whenever possible, I encourage couples to have me attend the rehearsal, especially if it’s a destination wedding. During this time, I get to meet the key players, get to know everyone’s names, and start to figure out the dynamics of the day ahead.
By the time the wedding comes around, I’m not “the photographer”; I’m “Hey Michael!” I think that matters to people, and I think that’s why they let their guard down in front of me…and when that happens, amazing photos happen. I can get right out there on the dance floor with my camera and join the party…and some of my favorite photos happen there.
See: Why Connections Matter
The city of Saratoga Springs is one of the most historical places in America. The town has a special deep-rooted culture with a history related to horse racing.
The first stakes race was held in 1865. Before this time all previous horse races were what we today call “claiming races” which did not involve stakes. The first stake was the Saratoga cup, which is still held today in horse racing.
The track became so successful that it led to other tracks all over saratoga springs and eventually led to the creation of the Saratoga Racecourse Association, an organization that still exists today. This association provided maintenance for all the tracks in Saratoga Springs and also continues to provide support for local horses.
Denise and her mom Deb are huge horse fans and live just a few hours away in Long Island, so they knew Saratoga would be a perfect place to have their wedding with its beautiful rolling hills and a stable of horses nearby for visiting (and they obliged us with photos).
Dee and Deb also make a line of wildly fun handbags, you can check them out here.
When you’re planning your wedding, one of the most important decisions you’ll make is who to hire as your photographer.
If you’re looking for someone who can capture the spirit of your day, then a documentary photographer (hey, that’s me!) is there to capture the entire feeling of the wedding day.
While of course there are some posed photos (because there’s no way I’m not doing some killer portraits at sunset) the focus is on you and your family and all the love and emotion of the day.
I’d love to hear about your day and what you are looking for in a wedding photographer.