I’ve shot a fair number of weddings over the years. By industry standards, not many at all, but in normal human terms I’ve seen my share.

The wedding photography industry, at least to me, is a strange beast. It’s hugely successful, which is nice to see in a rapidly shrinking professional photography world. I just never fit in. But, this isn’t really a surprise to anyone. I remember my parents telling me that THEY never fit in in life, so I’m not sure why I would have expected anything different. I did weddings for a variety of reasons. I always had the client in mind, but I also had my own feelings front and center while I was navigating my way through these shoots.

I would end up in little places, during little moments and I would know I was where I needed to be. I tried to make photographs that summed up these little “encounters” but the client was not always what I was thinking about. I would let my mind flow to whatever region it needed to flow. Sometimes the influence was music, other times literature. I would see daylight visions of different times, eras and regions. Imagine daydreaming, or creatively daydreaming, in the middle of the shoot. Maybe that is the best way to describe it.

In some cases these images became critical later on. In other cases they were never seen or used, but regardless, they were very important to me.

This little grouping is one such case. I think the elements caused my little adventure. The wind, the cold, the water. It was grand, and allowed just a little “pop” in my brain. I was freed, for just a few moments. Click, or “clunk” I should say, as I was using the Hasselblad. A respite. A moment, just for me, but perhaps for someone else. Nothing more, nothing less.

9 responses to “Periphery”

  1. Mark Olwick says:

    Love these shots, Dan.

  2. Brian Miller says:

    Beautiful images, Dan.

  3. Daniel,your words are very evocative.
    With this blog you are a kind of mirror for all of us,the ones that reads you,I´m sure of that .You are, “el otro,la otredad” ,the other one equal to me.
    Keep writing Daniel,you are a good influence…at least for me.

  4. LionelB says:

    At risk of being torn limb from limb, maybe weddings themselves are a strange beast, seen from a male perspective. The symbolism of one particular day of celebration seems to be more of a female need ? If you were a woman, maybe you could relate to the whole thing more. That said, there is a cynical artificiality to current practices, fed by the industry but swallowed by the participants, in large measure because they want to make a public statement about their social status.
    [Lionel dons a hard hat and retreats stage left …]

    • Smogranch says:

      Let me clarify. I LOVE the actual wedding. I love the idea of weddings and what they mean. What I don’t get AT ALL is the wedding photography industry. I never will. I no longer have anything to do with weddings or the industry, but the events themselves are fantastic.

  5. LionelB says:

    As friends and family greeting each other, sharing food together, the floral displays, telling funny stories – in other words as a party and as a solemnisation, great. But there is an industry of hangers-on setting an agenda of peripherals to make a fast buck. Photographers are far from being the only ones in on the act. The fantasy of the perfect wedding has been hijacked by turning that concept into an ever more elaborate formula, with another product at every turn. It should be about sharing joy, not ticking a score-sheet.

    • Smogranch says:


      I’ve seen them all. Weddings in 1999 were ENTIRELY different from those ten years down the road. However, the soul of the event is what is key. You can have a huge wedding with the right people and it all works well and leaves you feeling like you just witnessed something special. The key as a photographer is only working with those people.

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