Story & Gold Weddings
Hi, I’m Jen Brister and I cry at every wedding I photograph.
It didn’t start out that way - I was second shooting, assisting and such at very big fancy weddings at very big fancy venues in a very, very small state (Hi Rhode Island!) and while it was fun and I geeked out at the occasional celebrity guest (blame the small town midwestern roots), I definitely did not openly weep while on the job.
But fast forward a few years, I’m in New York, and I’ve moved on to shooting my own weddings, attracting my own clients, creating my own business, you know - just knocking the whole adulting thing out of the park (sorta) - and I can’t deny that at every elopement, every celebration, every wedding - at one point, I slightly embarrass myself and fake clean my glasses and rub something out of my eye. What spurred this transition - from it being work (not crying) to it being a purpose (crying), for me, came down to connection - a particular moment, in fact, when I photographed two women getting married right in the heart of a state’s capitol that days before, started legally recognizing same sex marriages.
Being a queer photographer - this is when it made sense to me. I saw my own story reflected in front of me and even more so, recognized the value of my own perspective when documenting the intimate stories unfolding around me.
When I meet with potential clients, usually through delightfully awkward phone calls in which I will constantly speak at the same time you speak, I tell them that my biggest advice is to hire a photographer you like as a person. Beyond their work, you need to like them - you spend a lot of time with your photographer that day. But it’s more than that - it’s about this connection - about finding someone that will cultivate the energy needed to create a space of authenticity, intimacy, honesty.
I’m lucky (like count my stars lucky) to have this connection with all of my clients — this diverse, unique, brave, beautiful group of people that have somehow found me and allowed me in to some of their most incredible moments. They are why I love what I do!
A huge thanks to H&H Weddings + Kate for allowing me to ramble AND for creating an online space that inspires me every. single. day.