Game Changer: Jim and Vicky Pollard

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.


A big part of the Game Changer series is paying homage to the fact that nothing ever happens in isolation, and that we are all the product of influence. Especially when we start out in our careers, and in a consumer-led field like wedding photography, it can be difficult to forge your own path. It can be easy to be led by current trends, but by doing so you’ll never be able to be set apart from your peers. It can be a catch 22 situation for some wedding photographers, how will you get bookings if you don’t cover what your couples want? But for New Zealand couple Pollard We Are when they trusted their gut and followed their calling, it made them stand out for the rest, and receive the first of many awards. Here’s their take on this shot below.


“When Vicky and I first started out in wedding photography all we ever saw in magazines and online were happy smiling couples on sunny blue sky days, which of course was lovely. The trouble was that we lived and shot in the mountains and with that came mountain weather. We always wanted our photography to be honest, a true representation of both the couple and the environment that they chose to get married in. So if the clouds rolled in and the weather became a bit variable, we wanted to capture that. However, we also thought this was perhaps not the ‘Dream Image’ that every bride might desire on her wedding day.  

This image of Emma and Keith from their wedding day here in New Zealand was probably the first image of ours to go viral and it was placed in the Top 50 Wedding Images in the world that year. Which is all very nice, but more importantly it showed that being true to ourselves and not following the crowd was okay. It gave us the confidence to continue to shoot how and where we loved, with the knowledge that there were couples who could buy into that too. I guess it also was the start of our style or voice – the ‘Epic Moody Mountain Wedding Photographers.’