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Forsyth Park and The Whitman Wedding

Throughout most of my time living in Savannah, hurricanes have not been a major threat. Over the past few years that has changed. Last week we all watched and waited as Hurricane Dorian slowly headed toward the US. Thankfully the monster storm turned and headed to the north, staying well off our beautiful coast. I’m sure it caused plenty of tense moments for couples who had planned for months to have their wedding in areas that were being evacuated. 

Plamena and Justin had been planning their destination wedding for over a year. Family and friends would be flying in from near and far to celebrate with them. As the sun rose Saturday morning you couldn’t even imagine that just days before Savannah was a ghost town. The weather was absolutely gorgeous and Plamena and Justin’s day was so amazing.

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Andaz Savannah Wedding

It was a hot, but a relatively quiet day in Forsyth Park. Ashley was a vision of beauty in her wedding dress. Justin held her in his arms as we captured some gorgeous photos by the fountain. It was their first quiet moments together since being announced as husband and wife.

Ashely and Justin were married during a beautiful ceremony on the rooftop deck at the Andaz Savannah. After the short trip to Forsyth Park for photos they arrived back at the Andaz to dance the night away and celebrate with family and friends.

 

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Hope, Love, and Joy

There’s a terrible old saying heard in newsrooms all over- “if it bleeds, it leads.” It seems most every news station and headline sadly leads with tragedy. Our social media feeds are filled with thoughts, prayers, well wishes, anger, and sadness. As I recently viewed news and current events, I couldn’t help but think of photojournalists working to keep us informed. After all, it was my job for 14 years. Fortunately, I never had to cover the aftermath of  a mass shooting, but I did cover plenty of senseless acts of violence. I’ve visited with grieving families, mere hours after losing a loved one. I’ve documented candlelight vigils, memorial services, and more funerals than I would like to remember. The one thing that I remember most is the feeling of hopelessness and despair in these moments. A dark cloud of grief had filled the room, and it had sucked the joy and hope from the people in it. Worst of all, the one thing that’s needed most in those tragic moments, is the one thing we rarely get a chance to document. Hope.

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Missing Details

We were surrounded! All eyes were on us as we did our best to follow the rhythm and not look like awkward middle schoolers at a school dance. We had just been introduced and were sharing our first dance as husband and wife. The only problem was...the song.

We looked at one another as we swayed, and I’m not sure what my wife was feeling but my stomach was in knots. Not because everyone was watching, but because that was not the right song. You see, I wanted everything to be  perfect, but things were already off and it was all my fault.

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Extraordinary Moments

Recently my wife and I watched a TED Talk by Brene Brown. During the talk, Brene mentioned how we often get so caught up chasing extraordinary moments that we miss the ordinary ones, and the ordinary ones are often the most important. That really hit me because all of those years when I was trying to find myself, I spent so much of my time chasing extraordinary moments. I was always looking for the “1 photo”- the decisive moment to tell a story, the big picture that was going to catapult me to bigger and better things, the quick fix that would make everything better. I always wanted to be more than I was, but more of nothing is nothing. 

Today I can see what Brene Brown means. The extraordinary moments and experiences are great, but it is those ordinary moments that often carry the most meaning. 

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