Every wedding photographer has one special image that has defined their careers and Lisa set out to ask a selection of those who have most influenced her to nominate their stand out shots for her monthly column in Professional Photo Magazine.
ERIC RONALD PICKS OUT THE ONE IMAGE THAT HE FEELS WAS HIS GAME CHANGER
This shot from multi-award winning reportage photographers and videographers York Place Studios is a particularly fitting one to end the Game Changers series on. We’ve spoken at length about how moving beyond wedding photography for your scope of influence is paramount to finding your own voice. This shot is when family collective York Place Studios felt that their street photography and wedding photography ceased to be different, and that the former could – and should – inform the later.
It is an especially prevalent lesson to learn right now when it’s such a Buyers Market out there. If you take one thing from this series, in the words of Baz Luhrmann, I hope this will be it.
Let’s see what York Place Studios had to say about this shot below.
From last weeks’ Game Changer from Gabe McClintock, where being picked up by a popular wedding blog changed the trajectory of his career, to something completely different from Eric Ronald – a realisation that it no longer mattered to him if other people ‘liked’ his image. We have talked a lot about influence in this series, and I hope that you have been able to take away from it that in order to really find your own voice as a wedding photographer these days, looking outside wedding photography for inspiration is a must in order to be creating imagery that sets your apart from your peers. That in itself can be a game-changing moment, like for Eric with this shot. Read more on his thoughts behind it below.
WHAT ERIC SAID…
“Firstly, I love this image. And I guess that’s one reason it was a ‘game changer’ for me – that I don’t really care if others like it or not. I wasn’t dancing for anyone else when I made it (except the couple of course!). It came from a lovely little spot inside me and it felt all warm and fuzzy externalising that into something others can see…
I made a conscious choice some years ago to avoid wedding photography as much as I can and take inspiration from literally everywhere else. At the time, amongst other things I was looking at street photography and photojournalism quite a bit. It offsets my conscious mind which has a need to tightly squeeze and perfect the pictures I take. A bit of tunnel vision can set in I suppose. Those genres of photography remind me to loosen my grip and open my eyes and heart to the randomness of what’s in front and around me. That’s when the REAL perfection happens. Alex Webb anyone?
And it’s funny because I see those two worlds colliding in this image – I had the couple statically posed all post-modern vibes but while taking a moment to stand back, breathe and listen the idea came to me (note: by way of inspiration!) to make this picture. In taking the blinders off and relaxing my need for perfection in the end made a more perfect image that speaks about the couple, the place and me the photographer as well.
It affirmed what my gut was telling me, that as wedding photographers we have the opportunity to not just run businesses and churn out pictures largely dictated by what our peers are posting on Instagram, but rather genuinely fuel our creativity with a healthy and varied diet of art, let the camera be an extension of that and our true selves and harness it to honour our beloved couples and their most glorious of days.”