Every year (for the past 11 years in a row), I have sparkled myself up to attend WPPI (Wedding and Portrait Photographers International), my industry’s biggest convention of the year in fabulous Las Vegas. Aside from getting to learn a few new things, catching up with friends from around the world and taking advantage of all of the fun that Vegas has to offer, a highlight of the convention is always the international print competition. I’ve entered images for the past few years but only in the past couple of years have I had the opportunity to sit in on the judging process and have found that I have learned more from that experience about the subtle nuances of image creation itself, than I have in any seminar…ever.
This year I entered a few images into the print competition. I must admit that I was slightly cranky that I did not receive a trophy this year as I have a couple of times in the past. And sometimes I give myself permission to be a little cranky on the inside while I’m busy being gracious on the outside (you know like at awards shows when the camera shows a nice close-up of the actors who didn’t win as they clap and smile through clenched teeth?) So even though I left trophy-less, I did leave with a brain full of visual inspiration as well as the highest score I have yet to receive on a print in this competition and I thought I would share it here. 91, baby! The wedding party category was particularly strong this year so I was thrilled to have an image that stood out enough to do so well. So here it is…”Each To Her Own” from the lovely wedding of Sivan and Eli at Seven Degrees in Laguna Beach.
Sivan had 12 lovely bridesmaids and was kind enough to allow each of them to select a gray dress of their own preference. I for one love the idea of respecting the individuality of members of the wedding party and the various hemlines, shoes and poses of all of these ladies gives you a little hint into who they are. And by eliminating the faces and including some negative space, we get this nice simple image that tells a great story without being too cluttered. Trying to say a lot while saying a little is not always easy, but in the end it’s what I strive for.