I’m not usually an overly outwardly emotional person at weddings that I photograph, even though it can be hard not to feel the heightened feelings that are woven throughout the day for the couple and their loved ones, I am normally so focused on documenting the moments visually that I can distance myself slightly emotionally.
However I had no chance whatsoever of maintaining a poker face at Mariko and Steve’s wedding. I started to tear up as Mariko and her mom Yukiko walked down the long, grassy aisle of Athol Hall’s lawn to her Steve while my mind flashed through over 20 years of shared friendship and moments.
Moments of childish pranks, of school days, sleepovers involving all the 80’s movies we could rent and speculation about our adult lives, of love, of loss, and adventures… and then quickly watching her and Steve create a new memory which would become one of the defining moments of their lives together.
It was both an honour to witness this day (through both a viewfinder and a layer of salty water) and to photograph it, and to know that I can help preserve this memory for their future selves to look back on is an incredible feeling.