I usually share real New Jersey weddings here at Mile Square Moments, but this week on the blog I wanted to take a moment to just reflect and be so incredibly grateful for all of the incredible couples and outstanding wedding vendors that have made 2021 a reality. If there is one thing I’ve been reminded of, it takes a VILLAGE. Although it has been my busiest year yet, it has also been the most rewarding!! I’ve had a chance to really focus on what matters most (the couples and their love stories). Now more than ever, I just enjoy life’s adventures along the way! Today, I really want to reflect on what a truly unbelievable year this has been – and the amazing people who made it all possible!
Photographing Two Years of New Jersey Weddings in 2021!
In 2020, almost every wedding day was postponed, canceled, or changed. I worked hard to accommodate (and re-accommodate) couples wanting their dream weddings, however, and whenever I could. I’m so grateful for the systems I put in place early on in my business! It was a LIFESAVER in 2020 and 2021. In fact, many couples commented how easy I made the re-booking process and how organized I was (something that often goes unnoticed when things are “smooth”)! I was grateful to be able to help HOWEVER I could!
Because of all the changes from 2020, I basically booked two years of weddings into just one season! This is definitely the most amount of weddings I’ve ever (and will ever) shoot and work on in one time period. Since I’m working on more weddings at once, I’ve been working overtime to deliver galleries as quickly as I can while still giving each wedding the time and attention it deserves. Some things can’t be rushed! Although it has been a tricky balance to strike, it’s pushed me to streamline and refine my workflows even further. Now, I like to focus on what I’m an expert at — shooting, editing, and delivering photos. I’ve brought folks on to help me in the other areas of my business to keep things firing on all cylinders! I’ve definitely surrendered to the idea of “doing it all” by myself!
On top of that, many couples (like Ashley and John below!), held a smaller intimate ceremony in 2020 and a large celebration in 2021. Additionally, it was one of the most incredible experiences seeing couples one year into married life! It was like a special reunion each time!
Outstanding New Jersey Wedding Vendors That Made This Year Possible!
Shooting two years worth of weddings in one year takes a VILLAGE. There is SO much I could say about my incredible network of wedding vendors. I will try and do it justice here. I have worked with the most amazing people. From Alan at Murphy Studio, my go-to wedding videographer (you can read more about my partnership with him here), Rachel at Rachel Watkinson Photography (one of my “regular” second shooters who I appreciate so much!), and many many more incredible people, thank you! Everyone has really gone above and beyond to make our couples’ dreams come true.
Working with associate photographers and second shooters on (and before) a wedding day
So much happens behind the scenes when it comes to wedding photography! As just a few examples, I’ve had photographers work overtime to review the couples’ ‘day of’ timelines so everything can be executed flawlessly. On more than one occasion, after the adrenaline of a wedding day has worn off, Rachel has driven us safely home to Hoboken when I was too tired to make the journey home. In a more serious example, I’ve had to tap my network of insanely talented photographers to assign a replacement to a wedding when the original second shooter was exposed to and/or tested positive for COVID. Preparation, health, and safety always come first!
To all the photographers who have shot weddings for me and with me, thank you! Nobody can be in two places in once and I couldn’t have done it without you. I’ve been so grateful for all of the wedding photographers and videographers who have truly treated my couples like their own and have been so generous with their time and talents this season!
I usually focus on the couples during a wedding day so my second shooters are the ones who capture your guests’ reactions, different ceremony angles as you walk down the aisle, and so many of the candid moments that I know my couples absolutely treasure. Because of all the reschedules, I’ve been incredibly grateful for all of the photographers who have worked with me and have been as flexible as I have as we all navigated a unique season of business. Nobody can do this all alone and I am so thankful for each and every one of you I’ve had a chance to work with.
Finally, a huge thank you to my incredible couples!
I couldn’t have done any of this without you. This year has been so difficult for couples planning weddings, and everyone has approached every situation with such grace and understanding! In the wedding industry, our work centers around emotions. To everyone that has (miraculously) stayed grounded and grateful throughout, thank you for reminding us why we do what we do! Thank you for being patient as I give each and every one of your galleries the attention they deserve! I am constantly inspired by the magic we make together!
However you celebrate, I hope you have an incredible Thanksgiving and holiday season! I will be back next week with another real wedding in New Jersey (follow me on Instagram to be notified!) and then a year-end wrap-up with all of the incredible couples I’ve photographed this year. From outdoor weddings at Van Vorst Park to stunning luxury wedding venues at Battello or Hudson House, to even more unique restaurant wedding venues like Porta and Halifax, I am looking forward to reflecting back on this last incredible year!