I've said it before and I'll harp it again, planning our wedding was THE biggest business lesson I ever could have gotten. An expensive one, too. As a professional, I feel it's important to always put yourself in your potential client's shoes, experience things how they would, and pause to analyze situations and possibly turn them into golden nuggets of life. Marshall and I didn't get a wedding re-do but we did get to "model" (in quotations because I am farrrrrr from a Klum) for a shoot that was equally as freaking exciting and downright petrifying, all the way to minute I struggled to zip my wedding dress up. STRU.GGLED. It was the Jonathan Canlas Film Is Not Dead workshop (FIND) on the North Shore, and holy smokes, did I cry when I got asked to help out. (yes. cried. Then emailed a gazillion times to confirm.) Not only was this Jon Canlas, who's film I dieeeee over, but A REASON TO PUT MY WEDDING DRESS BACK ON, even if it did require 3 yoga poses and a husband squeezing my ribs while I jumped up and down and zipped! Done and done. Together with two women I love (Ashley Smith and Alisa Greig) and several wedding creatives I adore (Passion Roots and A Cake Life), I designed a "Moroccan Glam" inspiration board and the talented ladies brought it to life! I spent the evening twirling in my Vera, kissing Marshall on command, and ditching my heels for more comfortable slippahs, but all the while being my mother's daughter and taking mental notes. Remembering what it felt like to not only be a "Bride" in a wedding dress again, but to be behind the camera. It makes me panic, legitimately. I get this lip quiver that won't subside and I feel like I forget all the tips I have ever given as photographer and just freeze. Thankfully the fifteen workshop attendees were the coolest picks in town (and from the mainland!) and made us feel comfortable, each with their own personalities behind the camera. Hopefully they didn't say "who the hell hired THIS girl?!?!". If they did, they played it off well. I not-s0-secretly had hoped to pick up a few film pointers while I pulled out every trick Tyra has ever shared, but I learned so much more. I felt what it was like to be a bride again, this time in Hawai'i. A girl who spent hours on her hair and make-up only to walk outside to the hottest day on record, leaving it a wet, stringy mess. To be decked out in 32 layers of tulle and worried that I'd rip my dress. Tipping over sideways by the chicken pens in my heels but for God's sake declaring we are lucky to do this I will not make Diva-ish requests even for one minute. Breaking down and begging someone to get my flip flops and feeling real guilty about it. Feeling each person's time crunch and not wanting to waste a second of their allotted time. To be down for whatever the photographer suggested. Getting excited about an idea suggested earlier, then bummed when we couldn't shoot it. Hitting a "I think I ran out of smiles" wall, but finding it in me to give it my all. Letting go of control and putting trust into the photographer's hands.
After all 15 photographers had photographed us individually for 8 minutes a piece, Marshall and I peeled off our layers of wedding attire and inhaled his sweet nothing whispers and temple kisses reward of pizza of beer and talked about how much fun we had. (Wait, so you mean I bought that beer and pizza and agreed to video games and nowwww you tell me you had FUN?!?!?!?). The honor and opportunity to be in front of Jon's camera, let alone the wayyyyyyyyysuperholysmokescrazyyouknowwhat'sup talented photographers at the workshop is not lost on me, I know how lucky we are, and dang, I am thankful. But I'm not just jumping up and down on my yoga ball refreshing blogs for the photos of us yelling out "developing scheschemloping!" I am grateful for the unexpected lessons and experience of putting on my gown and being a Bride again. One of the biggest lessons a photographer can have is being uncomfortable in front of someone else's camera...in a wedding dress.
THANK YOU Ashley for inviting us to do this, thank you Jon for being so dang cool and for shooting us, and thank you THANK YOU to the workshop attendees. I like ya'll.
And I can't forget my momma, who mailed me these Erickson Beamon earrings last minute. Thank you, Becky Goodwin. ;) And if the photos come back and I look like the sweaty mess I felt like...I told you it was hot!