We all love a good story, right? Well, let’s meet Bethany and John…an amazing couple who are pretty awesome on their own and even more spectacular as a unit.
Let me preface this post by saying that these two are one of my favorite couples ever. Bethany is a producer for CNN and John sells things. Bethany is originally from Rhode Island and John is from Georgia. They actually met while Bethany was producing a story for CNN and John was somehow tied to the story.
Fast forward to our meeting. They were in town and we met for coffee. I loved them right away. Bethany had this fun personality and John spoke with this deep southern accent that had me mesmerized.
At that meeting, we discussed wedding photography and I was convinced I would be shooting the wedding. Then came the surprise. Bethany is total a Type A. Me, not even close. I’m very easygoing, and though I do like to plan, it’s totally OK if things change.
I remember getting an email from Bethany and we ended up talking on the phone. She said she and Mike didn’t like the way I edited the color green, that it was too bright. I laugh now but at the time I was totally taken back as this was the first time I had ever heard someone critique the color of my images, especially a bride-to-be. It bothered her so much she was considering not hiring me for her wedding.
In my mind as a photographer, I was seeing this as a red flag. I mean, if she was that particular about the specific color, what else am I in store for? Mind you, there was no contract signed at this point.
I still really wanted to shoot their wedding, even with this small snag, because they were and are truly amazing. I had a decision to make: Do I pursue the talks of being their wedding photographer or should I cut ties. I ended up having a long discussion with John and we both laid it all on the table. After this conversation, Bethany, John and I were all convinced we had the perfect combination for their wedding.
Now came the engagement shoot. It was a Saturday and they flew in to visit family and for their session. It poured all day. I mean, it was a deluge. Normally if it pours it’s totally cool and you can just reschedule. But with them flying in from Georgia, itwas go time rain or shine.
Is my mind I was freaking out and thinking it was the end of the world. I was worried that she was going to hate the images and that they were going to fire me as their photographer. As I looked out the window and saw this rain, five words came to mind: “I am a dead man.”
As a photographer, you sometimes have to make something out of nothing – pull a bunny out of a hat even when there is no bunny. I was in a tough situation and thought I was toast. My gear is water resistant. Notice I didn’t say waterproof. My flashes are not water anything. I grabbed a few white shopping bags and prepared to have to cover the flashes
as I went for some creative lighting shots. Which brings me to this shot. Now I will admit shooting in the rain can be cool if it’s done right. If you backlight rain and shoot at a fast shutter speed, you can freeze the
rain mid-air and create some dramatic images. The cool thing about Bethany and John was they were totally game for anything. This really eased my nerves. We shot for about an hour until we were all completely drenched. It was toward the end of the session when I really wanted to capture something romantic, almost something out of “The Notebook.” I had John really embrace Bethany and bring her in. I told Bethany just to relax, close her eyes and be natural. I placed the light just behind their heads because I really wanted the flash to bring out the detail of the rain.
They totally help me nail the shot. Bethany absolutely loved the image and she loved the color green :) When it came to the day of the wedding, Bethany and John were perfect. They were such a joy to work with and I would work with them any day of the week. I still keep in touch with them from time to time. Because when people are that awesome, why wouldn’t you?