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On Bravery

July 20th, 2011  |  Published in Featured, Shoot

Some of my favorite photos are from the moments before the ceremony between the father and the bride. The hustle and bustle has come and gone – the father peeks over at his daughter, about to walk down the aisle to her new life.

In order to get those last moments, when nobody remains but the father and daughter, I have to let go of the shot of the bridal party walking, one by one, down the aisle. I have to sacrifice the photo from the front of the father and bride walking down the aisle.

It’s hard to break away from our internal expectation of getting every shot on the magical shot-list we’ve seen printed out and copied over and over again for our careers. We tell ourselves that there are these must-have shots. But just as there is no typical woman, there is no typical bride and no universal expectations placed upon us.


When I began shooting weddings, it seemed natural to me to stay with the bride until the very end. Now I often second-guess myself and plant myself in the aisle for “that shot”. What if she asks me for it later?


It’s never happened. No bride has ever come to me and asked “How come you didn’t shoot my day another way?” or “Why did you shoot that like that?” I have trust from my brides and they hire me for my vision. Besides, this is a painless photo to miss in many respects. There will be a million photos of her from the front, from her friends, of her walking down the aisle. But nobody but me can get those last tender seconds between dad and bride.


When I have a second shooter working with me, I usually plant them in the aisle for the bride-from-the-front shot. It’s a happy gift to me that when I second shoot for other photographers, they leave me in the back with the bride and father. I love it when Dad looks at his daughter as  “his little girl” for the very last time.

I can still get this shot of the bride approaching the ceremony from behind.

And this shot of the groom looking at his new bride, layered behind her. I feel invisible from this vantage point, and that’s the way I like it.


I vow to take this chance more often this summer and get more of these precious moments between the dad and his daughter. What risks do you like to take or would you like to take on a wedding day?


About Andree

Andree Kehn has written 38 post in this blog.

Andree is a fun Bethel Maine Wedding Photographer, who specializes in contemporary photojournalism. She eats shoots and leaves.


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