I experienced a few firsts yesterday: the first time I’ve ever shot a wedding without meeting the couple first, the first time I’ve shot the wedding of a couple who’s been engaged two months, the first time I’ve ever shot another photographer’s wedding (he’s awesome! Seriously, see for yourself at LostTrailStudios.com!), and my first Coopers Rock wedding. I don’t know how I’ve made it 30 years of living in Morgantown without ever experiencing a wedding at Coopers Rock, but I have.
Tyler messaged me, not to long ago, asking if I would be willing to photograph the wedding of he and Kayla, his bride. He let me know that the ceremony and reception would be very laid back and explained the details that they had planned. The minute he said “laid back” I was all in. I often look back on my own wedding day and wish we would’ve done something as simple as a small ceremony in the woods. Too much of our time was spent worried about minute details that didn’t even matter in the long run. I wish more of my day was spent hand in hand with my husband and less time worried about decor. Tyler and Kayla had the right idea. They wanted a small ceremony surrounded by their closest friends and family with a reception at a local restaurant that could take care of the tiny details for them.
We decided on immediate family, close friends and family meeting at Coopers Rock Overlook one Saturday afternoon for a quick ceremony with an awesome display of God’s handiwork.
I forced myself not to look at Tylers work beforehand because I knew it would make me even more nervous about the fact that I was about to photograph a photographer. That’s a pretty nerve-racking thing in our world. So I basically went into this situation completely blind. I only knew about them what Tyler had told to me on their questionnaire. They’ve been together less than two years and they’ve only been engaged a couple of months. Kayla wanted something as simple as a courthouse wedding, but Tyler talked her into a ceremony that would allow her to experience her father walking her down the aisle (awwwww!). Tyler’s boys were excited about the big day, and Kayla was the most laid back bride I’ve ever met. That’s basically all I knew.
I parked, got out of my car, and started walking down the trail to the overlook at Coopers. My plan was to ask anyone in wedding attire if they were attending a wedding for a bride and groom named Kayla and Tyler. Take that, social anxiety! Luckily I found a kind group of people who were, in fact, part of the wedding who let me awkwardly stand in trees and bushes to photograph them while they waited on the main act.
The first time I met Tyler and Kayla they were walking down the aisle. Crazy, right?! It didn’t take long at all to feel like I’ve known them forever, though. They’re kind and funny and easy going people who got to experience sharing their love with other people who know and love them. Kayla smiled with her whole face all day, and it was the most beautiful thing. You can tell they’re crazy about each other. It was a gorgeous day, and I was honored to be a part of it.