One thing we tend to read a lot in our inquiries is “we are not a traditional couple and that is what drew us to your work”. I used to rejoice when I read those words, but as of late, I started to question my reasoning behind my rejoicing. We used to say boldly, “We are not your traditional photographer” as if tradition was a bad thing and this somehow made us elite in the industry. When did tradition become the enemy of uniqueness? When did tradition equate to something negative or of less value?
I recently watched a Disney Short titled, “Olaf’s Frozen Adventure” and like most things Disney puts out, it made me think. I thought hard about how we portray tradition as the Portos. In the short film, Olaf is on a quest to find tradition for him, Ana and Elsa as they realize that everyone else had their own holiday traditions. They set out to find something unique of their own. Long story short, they found so much joy when they were able to find that what they were looking for was an old tradition that they’ve had all along, Olaf. Something they had since childhood. What they were missing the whole time was not something new that they needed to curate but something they had all along.
It got me thinking about my own life and how some of my favorite things in my personal life are traditions. A family meal at the table, gathering with my church family on a Sunday, rocking my son to bed, seeing the connection between a groom and his mother during their special dance, the NBA All Star Game, and the list goes on. Tradition is something I personally love in so many areas of my life so why the push against it in the wedding business?
I came to the realization that it is not tradition I have a problem with, but when couples feel like if they incorporate the traditions of their families, their families will make the day their own and it will be void of the couples personalities and uniqueness. One lesson I have learned from my mentor/pastor is that things do not need to be an either or, they can be a both and. It is only when the pendulum is swung too far in one direction that it becomes unhealthy.
In a recent wedding that we shot, Mark and Hope proved that you can mix the two beautifully. Their ceremony was in a gorgeous orthodox church filled with so many of their families traditions. Shortly after their I do’s, they hopped in the car with our squad and drove to some of St. Pete’s best art murals and their personalities shined in every part of the day. It was one of the most beautiful wedding’s we could have captured. It was not void of tradition and it was not void of uniqueness. So from here on out, we do not see tradition as a hinderance to what we capture, but something we see as an honor to capture! Real Moments meets Fine Art. Tradition meets Originality.