Here's a topic I feel pretty passionately about.
Catholic weddings need Catholic photographers. That's it, that's the tweet. Just kidding, I have plenty of reasons why I believe this.
As a Catholic myself, I was really excited about my wedding Mass. How often do you and your fiance get to pick the readings, form, and songs at Mass?? Customize Prayers of the Faithful? Have a Marian consecration? Choose your favorite priest(s)? Literally never ever again! It's the world's best form of prayer and worship dedicated to you and your spouse, full of elements that you get to choose.
The Mass was the most important part of the day to me, and I wanted a photographer who would respect the sanctity of the Mass, understand what was going on, and enter into prayer with my husband-to-be and I throughout the Mass. Unfortunately, when I googled "Catholic Wedding Photographers in Atlanta", I could not find anyone who was Catholic - just a bunch of photographers who had shot a few Catholic weddings before. I was one of the first of my group of friends to get married, so I couldn't go off of recommendations from my friend group. I did find a Catholic husband wife photo team in north GA, but they shot in a very bright and airy style which wasn't what I was looking for (I like color, contrast, and moodiness in my photos, just like the way I edit). There seemed to be a weird deficit in the metro Atlanta area or at least if there were any, they weren't ranking well on Google. It was disappointing to say the least.
If you've been to a Catholic wedding and a non-Catholic wedding, you know how different they are. Oftentimes, Catholic wedding Masses are at a dimly lit church, they're an hour long or more, the families are bigger, and there are a lot of things going on that other weddings don't have. Your typical wedding photographer doesn't photograph these kinds of weddings on a regular basis, so the work you see on their website might not live up to your expectations for photos because the photographer isn't fully in their element and creative sphere. I've seen non-Catholic photogs try to stand on altars, use flash during the ceremony, run up the aisle during the Consecration, and lots of other things. It's just not quite something they understand. I hate to say it, but I've heard a lot of non-Catholic wedding photographers say disparaging things about Catholic weddings, complain about Mass, or comment on how "weird" or "boring" they think Catholic weddings are behind closed doors.
Catholic brides deserve beautiful wedding photos and high quality experiences, too. We honestly shouldn't have to settle for whatever we can find or have to pay hefty travel fees to fly in all those Catholic photographers from up north (there are so many in Pennsylvania and Massachusetts, like what in the world). That's honestly why I started doing wedding photography; I wanted to give Catholic couples the experience I wish I had had.
If you're more of a "wrap things up in a tidy list that I can scan quickly" person, here you go. These are a few of the reasons you should hire a Catholic (specifically me) to photograph your wedding:
- I'm a pro at being unobtrusive and not bringing attention to myself so I don’t distract from the beauty of the Mass.
- Catholic weddings are a Sacrament, not just a ceremony. They include many traditions. As a Catholic, I know my way around the Mass and can guide you both personally and professionally through your big day!
- I will balance the photography with the dignity and importance of the Mass.
- I will pray for you and join you during Communion.
- I know when and where I am allowed to stand, kneel, and move.
- I will operate my camera in silent mode so no one is distracted by the sound of my shutter.
- I will capture your Mass through happy tears!
- I love capturing the joy that radiates from couples receiving the Sacrament of Marriage!
- I know what will happen during a Catholic ceremony so I can better document those moments.
- I always respect the rules of the church.
- I've been in your shoes and know what it's like to plan a Catholic wedding, so I can offer you alllll the tips and tell you about the fun traditions you can incorporate into your wedding day.
- I know how to capture beautiful, timeless, meaningful images – even in the most dimly-lit churches!
- I want the images of your day to reflect the beauty and timelessness of the Sacrament.
If you're a Catholic bride in metro Atlanta area or anywhere in the southern U.S., I'd love to work with you and capture your wedding day! I'm happy to discount my travel fees for Catholic weddings out of state if I'm the photographer you want to work with. Just send me a message here.