Kerri & Ryan

Kerri & Ryan

After years of photographing weddings, I had a new “first” with my photographing of Kerri and Ryan’s wedding today.  I had my first “eHarmony” wedding (of course, I did not know that until the reception).  So, it is not just people on TV, it is real and happening right here in southcentral Alaska.

It was a great wedding to work as a photographer.  There are three elements that must come together to make for a fun wedding as a photographer.  First, you have to start with a fun couple and a fun, relaxed, easy to work with set of family and friends.  Second, it really helps to have venues for the ceremony and reception that are aesthetically pleasing.  Finally, for those outdoor portraits – and I love to do outdoor portraits, this is Alaska after all – the weather must cooperate.  I was fortunate to have all three with this wedding.

The ceremony was held at the United Methodist Church in Chugiak, on the Old Glen Highway just south of the South Birchwood exit.  It is oriented north-south, with high walls of glass at the front and back of the church.  While it made for a spectacular view behind the alter area, it also presented an exposure challenge – how to expose the ceremony correctly while not blowing out the background.  The answer – my 600 watt Norman strobe, which I used not only for portraits but for the ceremony.  It’s a beautiful church and the ceremony was short and quite nice.  Kudos to the pastor, Carlo, who moved here from the Philippines a year ago to lead the church, for a really nice ceremony.

The reception was held at the Millenium Alaskan Hotel (formerly the Regal), on the shores of the Lake Hood Seaplane Base, in the Reddington Ballroom.  As is often the case, I took far more photos at the reception than I did the ceremony.  The math is rather easy, really.  Receptions simply last longer, hours rather than minutes, allowing me to expend a lot of pixels.  But receptions bring out all kinds of things in people, from their inner groove to their happy face, making for all sorts of photo ops.  Take the flower girl, for example.  Shy and reluctant to do everything from formal portraits to walking down the aisle with the ringbearer, she let loose and became a dance diva at the reception.  It also helps to have a DJ who does a great job in working the audience … in this case, Brian from Alaska Professional Entertainment (APE).

As is often the case, I continued the formal portrait session at the reception site after all of the formalities were done.  I took Kerri and Ryan along the shores of the lake, working with the low evening light, plane houses, docks, and the occasional overflying float plane.  They were a great couple to work with, and allowed me to think creatively with their portraits.  I have been told by other couples that one thing they regretted from working with their wedding photographer was not taking enough time to do portraits.  It is always a pleasure to work with couples who recognize that.

And the weather continued my trend of perfect weather for weddings held on the first Saturday in June.

One Response to “Kerri & Ryan”

  1. DJ Brian Says:

    Thanks for the kind review Carl. This really was a fun reception and great working with you..

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