Ciera & Kevin Wedding in Dallas, Texas

Ciera & Kevin Wedding in Dallas, Texas
If you’ve been to our blog before, you’ve likely heard us say something along the lines of, “when shit goes wrong at a wedding, we get excited.” And mostly, that’s a true statement. When stuff goes “wrong,” it usually means there’s an interesting visual story to be told. That wasn’t quite the case at Ciera and Kevin’s wedding in Dallas, Texas. Nothing really went “wrong,” per se—until the ceremony, that is. And nobody, except Lanny and myself, had any idea things were going horribly wrong (for us)—even Ciera and Kevin (we hope). Until, of course, the moment we hit ‘Publish’ on this blog.

Ciera and Kevin’s wedding started out fan-flippin-tastic. Lanny tagged along with the guys for a round at Top Golf, while Kevin rallied hard to sober up from the previous night’s/morning’s escapades. I documented a morning full of beautiful moments and nervous anticipation with Ciera’s friends and family. By the time the ceremony came along, we were in our groove. We were feelin‘ this wedding, and we were feelin‘ these people. Things were running a little behind (par for the course), but that didn’t matter.

Their ceremony was to take place at sunset. But due to this, that and the other thing (all documented, of course), things were running late. By the time Ciera actually walked down the aisle with her brother and grandpa, it was turning from dusk to twilight—a challenging situation for photographers, but nothing we can’t handle. Lanny had set up our flashes at the end of the aisle, positioned so we could have nice edgy light. As the ceremony got underway, I glanced down at my camera to discover that the flashes weren’t working properly. All four of them were failing to fire consistently or predictably. They had been working perfectly just 30 seconds earlier, but they just suddenly stopped. I glanced over at Lanny. He was smiling, but I knew it was a facade (I can tell that look of restrained panic from a mile away). He was dealing with the exact same problem with the flashes. We tried all of our regular troubleshooting, but none of it worked.

No worries,” we thought, “we’ll just switch to natural light. It’s dark, but our cameras can handle it.” Well, little did we know this would be the world’s shortest ceremony, clocking in at less than 4 minutes, flat. Just as I reached down to change my settings on my camera, Kevin’s dad—who was officiating the ceremony—announced, “you may now kiss the bride.”

“The fuck?”

I missed it. We both missed it.

Now, you may be wondering, why on Earth would these purportedly professional wedding photographer’s, be revealing this epic fail on their public store front, for all prospective future clients to see? I’ve been thinking about this missed first kiss for 12 weeks. Wondering how we could have avoided it, and how we can avoid it in the future. But, in the end, we came to the conclusion that it just doesn’t matter that much.

We plan weddings for months and months. We work up the moment of the bride and groom announcement to be THE BIG moment of a wedding day. But, having photographed over 150 weddings, we can tell you that it rarely is. In fact, it never is. The first kiss is 1/54,000th of the day (I actually did the math). The rest of the day is comprised of all the unscripted moments—the ordinary moments, the unpredictable moments, the unique moments. The moments of laughter, when you realize that you—and none of your friends—actually know how to tie a bow tie. The ridiculously awesome moment, when you’re trying to glue your dress to your boobs. The moments of frustration, when the shoes won’t stay tied up. The anxious moments of stress, when the chauffeur driver is late. The moment when mom grabs your hand in the back seat of the car. The moment when your unassuming DJ, shockingly turns out to be the baddest ass DJ anyone’s ever seen. It’s the cumulation of ALL these moments that make up the 54,000 seconds of a wedding day.

So you won’t see a photo of Ciera and Kevin’s first kiss below. But you will see a wedding story that Lanny and I are proud to have captured. When we look at their photos, we see Ciera and Kevin. Like, we SEE them! We see their beautiful love for each other, and how they show it to each other—not with a staged kiss in front of an audience—but with subtle looks and unmistakable body language. We see how much they mean to, and care about, their friends and family—A LOT. We see all the quirky little idiosyncrasies of their wedding, and how it’s uniquely different from every other wedding in the history of weddings.

Ciera and Kevin, we’re sorry we missed your first kiss. Congratulations on setting the new world record for the shortest wedding ceremony of all time. And most of all, thank you for trusting us to not miss the important stuff (and forgiving us for missing the not-so-important stuff). We love you!

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