“Count your age by friends, not years. Count your life by smiles, not tears.”
– John Lennon
It’s wedding Wednesday which means we’re highlighting another wedding story from the last few weeks. If you’ve kept up with my blog over the last few weeks you’ve seen this amazing girl in one of the most dramatic bridal sessions we’ve ever had. Brantly is a fan favorite from the gate not only with our followers but also with our team. This girl’s energy, joy, and smile is completely infectious. I was pulled in by her love for Christ and her love for Allen from the very first meeting and though I could brag on the two of them independently for ages it really is these two together that make the magic in these photos. Allen completes Brantly in so many ways. That’s not an easy statement to make and it easily borders cheesy - I get it. But what I mean is this : on our very first consult with these two he couldn’t keep his hands off of her. Not in an annoying way or a too much PDA kinda of way - but in a very involved and very supportive kind of way. He is a southern dude who ultimately wants Brantly happy. Fair enough. But he doesn’t use that as an excuse for being uninvolved and his smile, his style, and his hand help Brantly through the entire engagement. Their engagement session was perfect but only in how real it was. We didn’t waste time posing, or styling moments but just let these two share moments together and be as perfect together on camera as they are when I’m not there.
I’m sure Brantly and Allen have fought before. Positive that somewhere down below the two sweet smiles and big laughs these two are always sporting there’s been some kind of conflict. But if I’m honest I can’t even imagine it. Brantly’s joy takes over a room and her friends and family reflect that joy so perfectly. Allen is strong but doesn’t hide behind silence. He’s a big personality wrapped up in a humble package and he’s never smiling bigger than when little Brantly is snuggled under his chin. There’s no magic story here. It was a wedding. The girl’s got ready. The couple saw each other. The ceremony happened. The friends danced. But the magic is in the details….
These girls didn’t just get ready. They partied together all morning, laughing, telling stories and enjoying the seconds as they passed. The couple didn’t just see each other. They spent about 15 minutes together with their eyes closed just letting the gravity of the day settle in. They let the heat, and the breeze, and the humidity sink into memory instead of just affect them. They breathed in deep and took time to realize that this was the very beginning of their forever and then when Allen did turn to see Brantly he was ready to not just say but show her his heart. The tears were real. Not overwhelming, not distracting, but certainly there and they didn’t just let the photos happen - they let us fade into the background and spent their 45 minutes together as actual time together. Not time with two photographers and a videographer. The ceremony didn’t just happen but Brantly’s trip down the aisle was accompanied by an audible gasp by the friends and family in the room. Allen got a look from his best man on her way down the aisle that summed up the moment perfectly. Peace. Finally they kissed and ran back down the aisle (until Allen scooped up his wife and ran from the chapel with her in his arms). But the friends didn’t just dance. The party was a complete celebration. Not just the friends, but everybody on the dance floor. The DJ (Brock Entertainment, the very best in the industry) didn’t just get the crown moving and having a blast together but he directed everybody through an evening full of laughing, tears during the toasts, line dances, and 80’s hits.
Every moment meant something to these two and we were so blessed to see those moments settle in. It was almost like this day moved in slower motion than most weddings because the people were so focused on enjoying it. If only every couple left their wedding day with this many memories. I can’t possibly sum up Brantly and Allen in words. Can’t express how excited I am to already be shooting two of their closest friend’s weddings next year. And can’t being to say how grateful I am to have been a part of this wedding. I’m not supposed to pick favorites - but if I did….
LOVE YOU TWO so much. — Miles.