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Friday, October 3, 2014

Our Wedding Anniversary: Happiness Defined

Summarizing today's post: Photos of our wedding from a year ago, what happiness is to me, & how photography and happiness are closely related.

shot at 62mm, ISO 400, f/4.8, 1/250th, ambient mixed with 2 off-camera strobes (TTL)
This past Tuesday, the 30th, my wife and I celebrated our one year wedding anniversary. We had a wonderful day relaxing and reflecting on this past year and how quickly it went by. 

As part of the day, we looked at some wedding photographs...such happy moments! I wanted to share a few of them with you. [Now why would I do that? Read on...]

Pictured above is a sweet little photograph taken on the back porch of our mountain cabin just after the wedding ceremony. While I was taking a few shots of Pinky in her pretty white gown, one of our friends who accompanied us grabbed my camera. He made me sit down for a moment while my new bride jumped in my lap. He snapped the photo. Nice shot I thought.

Photo by wedding photographer
This next photo is from our wedding album, and it shows the energy and excitement that Gavin brought to the event. It makes me smile to look at it :) Sweet youngin...he did so good as ring bearer.

I never knew how much effort could go into planning even a very small wedding. Not only did we need to decide on the place, but then who would marry us, how many people were going to come, how to feed everyone, etc. The list goes on. (I don't know what I'd have done if I didn't have Pinky's help!) 

After much deliberation about where the ceremony would be held (deciding ultimately between the Outer Banks of North Carolina and the mountains of Tennessee) we decided that Gatlinburg, TN would be where we were going to "tie the knot". And it was a wonderful place indeed.

We found a wonderful little wedding chapel tucked away in the the hills of this nice town, and it was perfect. It provided for us exactly what we wanted...a small, classy place where we could exchange our vows in the presence of God. And of course...we arranged to have plenty of photos!

Photo by wedding photographer
We decided on Gatlinburg for many reasons. One of which was that we didn't want a big wedding at all, and didn't want to trouble a lot of folks with coming. The way we accomplished this was by moving the event 300 miles away! Only a handful of our friends and family followed us up there.

The seclusion of the mountains is soul-soothing. I have spend a lot of time as a child visiting the mountains, starting from when I was just a child. I have learned how simply being up there can change you. It's hard to explain unless you've been there. To be able to gaze up at the nighttime sky and see the brightest set of stars in your life looking back on you is priceless. 

We wanted this simplicity and serene environment for our special time. We spent several days up there in Gatlinburg (and neighboring Pigeon Forge) after the ceremony was over and the family went home. This gave us a chance to rest a relax after the hectic events leading up to our trip. We so desperately want to return very soon to visit again. I highly recommend you make plans to travel up there soon if you are looking for a place to get away for a few days (especially this time of year with the leaves about to turn colors).

Finding Pinky and then getting married to her completed me...for I was lost for a long time. Discovering someone who fits you like a puzzle piece can be a gut-wrenching journey. We all go thru it, and some of you may not have found that perfect person yet. But don't give up, keep looking. (By the way, there is no such thing as a perfect person... but there is such a thing as a perfect match for you.)

I have talked many times about happiness and photography (see here for most recent post) and how they are closely related. I am absolutely convinced that photographing events--that already make you happy--will increase that level of joy. And here's the will EXTEND and lock in that happiness. As long as you have access to those photos, you can get a quick little "happy fix" whenever you want!

This is the reason for my post today. I wanted to show you by example something that gave me extreme happiness. Our wedding day. And that by taking the time to get some photographs of this wonderful day (either my me or someone else), I extended that happy and content feeling.

What ever gives you joy...capture it forever with a photograph.

One last photo before I go. This one is a group shot of all our loyal friends and family who made the long journey up into the hills of Tennessee to share in our joy that day. (Not pictured here is my brother Bryce, his wife Krista, and Gavin...poor boy was too wore out to pose for yet another photo.) I love all of you.

shot at 20mm, ISO 400, f/8, 1/60th of a second, ambient mixed with 2 off-camera strobes (TTL)
I hope everyone has an awesome Friday. Thanks for reading!


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