Thursday, October 25, 2012

Pinterest, Preconceptions and Parasitic Replications

One of the best things about meeting new people and making new friends is the potential for new adventures. Other people have their own set of life experiences and values that make them unique. From a photography standpoint, I always try to tap into those special and exclusive experiences of each person in order to make timeless and personal pictures.

A lot of people appreciate my approach and visual style, and in return, I love that they are so enthusiastic about working with me. That kind of positive energy sets the tone and vibe for really wonderful images.

However, I've recently run into more and more couples who embrace the spirit of my visual style -- but then put their own inner emotional and mental boundaries on what constitutes a "good" photo shoot.

That's where Pinterest comes in. Pinterest is a great place to share and collect ideas for wedding photography, decorations, activities and a whole lot more.

Whether you're conscious of it, as you pin and re-pin your favorite images, you're defining those styles that suit your personality and preferences. Everyone follows a process like this when they're planning an event, no matter if it's through Pinterest, wedding magazines or some other type of media.

I wholeheartedly back Pinterest and other sites as jumping off points for inspiration. However, just as the Internet has watered down, diluted and globalized so many aspects of human culture, so too has it proliferated specific styles of photography, wedding and otherwise.

In other words, sites like Pinterest spread specific types of images by popularity -- as in, a popularity contest of immense proportions. Those are the expected images. They are the pictures that fit our mass culture's definition of what's good and right in image making.

When couples come to me wanting unique photography, I ask them to abandon their ideas of what a photo shoot really is. For many people that's a hard concept to embrace. How exactly are you supposed to plan for something like this?

The answer is simple. You don't.

The best photos are a combination of a few elements, like quality of light and location. But you can't manufacture or plan for serendipity and magic, which are critical to making unforgettable and iconic images instead of copycat pictures like the ones you see all over the Web.

For that part, you just have to trust me and trust the process. In the end, that communication and faith pay dividends in images that bypass popular fads and instead last a lifetime.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Chris & Taylor | Lincoln, NE Wedding Pictures by 40 Nights Photography

Chris and Taylor dated, well, forever. So when their wedding day finally came they were definitely ready for everything. Here are a few images that we made together.