As you know, on Tuesdays I normally post articles about the photo industry and, even though this subject seems more like “Monday-personal” matter, I figured it actually has everything to do with the industry! 🙂 I’m usually going on and on about how photography is my dream job and how I get to live this dream every day, but I’d also like to share some less glamorous parts of the job, so let’s dig into FIVE of the most difficult (or awkward) things I had to endure while shooting a wedding! 🙂
1. Memory cards suddenly went into error mode.
I was doing a family shoot in Zwolle (our town) one evening when, all of a sudden, the cards started to display an error. I kept pushing the shutter and nothing happened, no picture was being taken! I checked all the settings, pulled the card out and then back in again, nothing seemed to work. Now, if you know me, you know I tend to stop thinking when I’m in a panic. And I went full-on panic. My brain froze and I couldn’t even think of a way out. Fortunately, the father saw me freaking out and came to ask what’s wrong. I managed to utter some words about the card, trying to hide my panic, when he said “oh, that’s an easy fix!” and proceeded to take out the card, flip the small button on the side and voila, it started working again! I could kiss that man!! I was over the moon happy (and also almost dying of shame cause, in that whole panic mode, I totally forgot to check the side button!) Oh and the man wasn’t even a photographer, so I have no idea how he knew exactly what to do! The whole evening I was shaking and vowed I would never panic like that again. (yes, that vow has since been broken countless times:P)
2. Throw up in the bride’s bathroom.
Ok, this one might be TMI but hey, if we’re being honest here, this just has to be told.
Dani and I went to weddings while being nauseous countless of times. When you’re booked a year ahead, you have no idea what’s gonna happen when that day comes, so you gotta be prepared for everything. We never leave the house without metoclopramide and ibuprofen but on that specific day, I was in hell. I had actually been in hell for the two months leading to the wedding, because it was that year that I’d gotten a burnout and chronic anxiety. Because of the anxiety, I couldn’t breathe normally and all that wrongly inhaled air would make me extremely nauseous. So, on the wedding day, I obviously became extremely anxious, and all the hyperventilating (plus the lack of sleep and constant tiredness) brought the nausea over the limit. And soooo I found myself throwing up in my bride’s bathroom. It was so humiliating for me but, luckily, no one ever knew that even happened (until now, that is:D).
3. Almost had an accident.
It was winter and it had just frozen the night before. We had to be at the bride’s place quite early in the morning but, luckily, she lived only 15 kilometers from our house. However, we figured it’s good to leave one hour earlier, just in case the roads were too slippery. BEST decision we ever took because, half an hour later, we were still in Zwolle, driving like snails because of the icy roads. At one point we had to take right at a roundabout, when our car totally lost it on the ice and we went straight towards a poll. We didn’t hit it, thank God, but it took some time to drive off the roundabout and back unto the street. We arrived at the destination after more than one hour and we were just SO grateful that we had such lovely and understanding clients.
This one was a first and a last experience for me! I had nothing scheduled for that weekend, when a lady writes me an email about how their photographer had just broken his hand and they needed a photographer asap for their wedding that was gonna take place in TWO days! She had found out about me from the videographers and loved my style and wanted to know if I could take their wedding. I thought, there’s no way I’m doing this, it goes over everything that my business stands for, but I thought of how difficult it must be for them to have no one 2 days before the wedding so in the end, I agreed. I got there on the wedding day, not knowing ANYTHING about them. I usually take my time to know my bride and groom, to find out about their passions, hobbies, family members, plans for the day etc. Now, I was completely in the dark. It was one of the worst experiences for me because I love to go to an event prepared and knowing just how to act according to the personalities of my clients. It did teach me a lot of things though so I guess, in the end, it had its positive sides too:).
5. Pumping in the bathroom.
Again, this is too much information. You can just skip this one if it makes you uncomfortable:P. But this happens to most photographer moms who had just had a baby so, why not talk about it?
I had just had a baby. Our first wedding was a month after my delivery and, with a broken heart, we left our daughter at home for the first time since she was born. On the back seat, we had our usual gear, plus a new bag. The one containing my electric pump. I had researched a lot and had all the info from all these mom-photographers who were traveling everywhere with their milk pump. So, we arrive at our destination and, a few hours later and in extreme pain, I couldn’t put it off any longer so I take my pump and try to slip into the bathroom unnoticed. I start pumping and the sound is just so loud! People wanna use the bathroom, they keep knocking, I keep saying “in a minute!”, the pump goes “”whooosh. whooosh.”, people knock, pump keeps whooshing, all in all, a nightmare! And to think that I’d have to repeat that whole ordeal 4 hours later was just horrifying! So yeah, lots of weird stuff happen in bathrooms during a wedding day, in case you weren’t aware!:D
5. Lots of crying.
Weddings are emotional. Not only for the people involved, but also for the people behind the camera. We notice a lot during a wedding day because our attention has to be focused on every person, and it’s amazing to see so much realness (is that even a word?) happening on such an event. It can easily become overwhelming, especially when having a wedding right after my miscarriage, where there are tons of adorable babies and lots of cuddles from their happy moms. It can also be overwhelming to witness the newly married couple kissing and hugging their parents one month after we had to bury my father in law. So many emotions can be triggered during a wedding and so often I ended up crying behind my camera, but most of the times, they’re tears of awe. I’m always in awe of how life unfolds. Of how people can overcome hardships and find a way to enjoy life so profusely. Of how the joy of two people becomes the joy of a hundred. Of how their joy becomes our joy. It’s beautiful, it’s overwhelming in its all bittersweet particles and there’s no way that won’t bring tears to my eyes. Because life is worth it.