I, JD, truly believe in the meaning behind "Sonder". When you take the time to get to know and understand the amazing people you cross paths with on a day to day basis, you will learn about all the stories, big and small, that make up who they are. I apply this to every aspect of my wedding photography. I learn about each one of my couples, as well as their friends and family. I learn about the stories that have brought you to this point in your lives. This understanding is what allows me to create genuinely candid photographs that you and yours can cherish forever. Real, completely un-staged, photos that actually represent the two of you and your unique wedding day! The end result is 100% unobtrusive photography coverage that is better than any posed photo could ever be!
Every wedding photography website nowadays uses the words "Storytelling" "Candid" "Documentary" "Photojournalistic". These have become trendy words in the wedding photography industry. For me, those words have never been trendy, it's just what I do, in the true sense of those words. My goal is to take you through my process leading up to the big day, so that on the actual wedding day, I know exactly what I need to capture. I know the moments that will matter the most to you two. The moments to key on and create amazing photographs from, all while being 100% unobtrusive. That means I don't need to tell you where to stand, who to stand with, which way to turn your head, or anything of the sort! There is no need to stage a photo and then tell you to act natural and call the reactions "candid" Instead you get to live out your real wedding day and have it truly documented in a way you can see HERE. Don't worry, we still do formals/portraits, more on that below.
Part of what allows me to create amazing photographs from these REAL moments is that my biggest hobby is studying the work of true photojournalist. From Cartier-Bresson, Sebastiao Salgado, James Nachtwey, Sam Abell, and any/all of the Magnum works. I am obsessed with their ability to tell an entire story within a single photograph. It's what drives me in my wedding photography. That goal of creating a story from not just a series of photos, but a single photo that tells the entire story and can emotionally move the meter for you two! To do this is where the "Sonder" part of Salt & Sonder comes from. That part of the process where I will truly get to know you two so I can better document what actually matters to you both. My style isn't for everyone. Although we will get you pinterest worthy photos, it isn't the goal. Instead, the goal is to create a story from real photos that represents the two of you and all your loved ones. We will create some epic portraits that you can blow up to 6' wide on your wall and make full spreads in your wedding ablum, and although those will be amazing! My bread and butter is the other 50, 60, 100+ photos that will make up your wedding album. Those real moments that I had absolutely nothing to do with besides clicking the shutter. It's within those photos where the memories will be so genuine, that you can truly cherish them forever.
I talk a lot about moments and candid photos that are actually candid, see the long rant above. But fear not, we still allot as much time as you two would like to capture formal & traditional photographs, along with some seriously kick ass portraits! We cover this in great detail leading up to the day so that we can make sure you two get everything you want, without your day turning into a photo shoot!
I grew up wanting to become a sports photographer. But instead I ended up joining the Navy straight out of high school. For the next 6 years I'd spend about 75% of my life on or in the ocean. Hence the "Salt" part of "Salt & Sonder". It was during that time that all my stories came together to bring me to where, and who, I am today. A few years after I left the Navy I ended up volunteering to photograph a Marines wedding at a local church. The rest is history. 3 years later I was quitting my day job and I haven't looked back since.
Wedding photography for me is the ultimate in photojournalistic photography. I use the term photojournalistic cautiously on the site because it is over and misused in the wedding photography world. But I think of weddings as the ultimate story of two people and their families coming together. It's a day everyone will remember forever and the photographs that can be created from that day are just epic! As long as you are patient and allow the stories to unfold in front of the camera, the rewards are spectacular and the end result is hopefully something my couples will cherish forever.
“IT IS AN ILLUSION THAT PHOTOS ARE MADE WITH THE CAMERA… THEY ARE MADE WITH THE EYE, HEART, AND HEAD.”
~ HENRI CARTIER-BRESSON
I love the quote above. It is 100% fact. But, a lot of people ask about what gear I use and why, especially other photographers. If you'd like to know, check out my feature over at Shotkit!