‘This wedding is split across 4 posts to allow each part of the wedding to shine’.
So, this is where it all started. I touched down in Puerto Rico honored and ready to document the amazing wedding of Amber Ridinger and Duane McLaughlin. Destination weddings are amazing, but they also have their negatives. Issues with visa’s, tiredness and working out of your comfort zone can be a challenge bigger than some assume. However one of the biggest reasons why I shoot mainly destination weddings is because I tell stories. I arrive a stranger but leave as family. For me this hold weight far bigger than a transaction. I will live my life documenting people and making friendships. Connecting to two with my art completes me and when I am old, I will look back and smile over the value I have created in peoples life. Most destination weddings span across a number of days and involve a number of events. This wedding started here, on an amazing beach in the Ritz Carlton Puerto Rico.
The small details are important. They hold the key for many triggered memories and tell the story of why a couple decided on that particular destination. I arrived with my assistant Yiannis to find Duane in the sea, feeling right at home kite-surfing, this is where it all started. Hanging out with people, observing them, their family and friends to build a mental picture of their story is why I shoot stories. I am more focused on a series of images over single imagery. It is a case of watching, building trust and connections first. Trust is a major part of what I do and I know at this stage I had their trust…..this was precious to me. After some fun times on the sand, friends and family started to casually arrive, so naturally where is there life, there are stories and moments. It was beautiful to see people come together and embrace this experience. When I saw Duane’s reaction when he first saw his ‘Boyz’ I knew how special this day would be for him. So I introduced myself to his friends and after no time I was accepted into the crew as one of the ‘Boyz’, the only Greek one which gave me immense pride. Now it was a case of documenting the moments between friends, the moments they will all remember for ever. I thank Duane and Amber again for allowing me to be a part of their personal memories.
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