More and more I notice the wedding industry telling brides & grooms what they need to be doing, what they need to be wearing, what they can’t live without for their wedding day -new trends of the year and what is now off trend. Oh but don’t be TOO TRENDY, because you still have to be unique. WHAT? It saddens me that we often feel like need to keep up with everything and everyone else sometimes. As a past bride, I myself admit to getting lost a bit. And through all of it, we tend to forget the true meaning of the day and what matters most.

With the way wedding photography has gone it’s even to point where I find many people feel they NEED to have every certain photo that every other couple has from their wedding day, and almost expect it. There NEEDS to be a photo of the groom crying, because that just has to be captured and if he’s not crying like others have in photos then oh no he must not love his bride enough?! Or there NEEDS to be a photo with the bride and all the girls seeing her in her dress for the first time squealing with joy because we have to have that same moment as everyone else. Mom hugs, bride tears, the most touching first look, I’m not saying that these moments if they happen organically should not be captured, but sometimes they just don’t happen. So we shouldn’t force them too. And we shouldn’t leave ourselves to these expectations. The moments that happen truly are when I watch people just let go of those expectations and enjoy the present moment. There is too much pressure on this day and what it should be, that we forget to enjoy what it is.

It’s always been my goal, but it’s easy for everyone to get lost in the chaos, so especially in this coming year, I want to remember to focus on what’s important and not just what photos need to be captured. It’s why I was drawn to this industry -to capture that human connection.

Below are some snippets from 2018 of all the beautiful people that stepped in front of my camera and let themselves be present.

Lauren Crawford