RF Wedding of the Week: A True Backyard Wedding by Jennifer Tai

By // April 3, 2014 // Posted in Photography, Wedding of the Week

Any wedding photographer worth his or her salt knows that not every ceremony takes place at The Four Seasons, with the bride in a Badgley Mischka gown and Hydrangea centerpieces.

JennTai_0001JennTai_0002JennTai_0008JennTai_0009JennTai_0006It’s the wealth of imagery you bring to more simple weddings that makes for a truly creative photographer. Seattle-based Jennifer Tai is a great example of such a shooter, as demonstrated in her photojournalistic take on Brenna and Andy’s ceremony, a backyard wedding in the truest sense (as further proof, the groom wore shorts and flip-flops).

JennTai_0003JennTai_0004JennTai_0011JennTai_0012JennTai_0013JennTai_0014“I’ve been promised such things but rarely do weddings REALLY turn out to be ‘casual, backyard summer BBQs,'” writes Tai in her blog post about the event. “But true to Brenna’s word, it was just as she’d described it; an intimate family gathering and the only way you could tell that it was a wedding was 1. her dress and 2. the 20 to 30 chairs pointing towards the floral arch.”

JennTai_0019JennTai_0017JennTai_0020JennTai_0022JennTai0032JennTai0021JennTai_0015Tai shot the wedding with two Canon 5D Mark IIIs and Canon prime lenses (mainly the 35 mm and 50mm).

JennTai_0025JennTai_0026JennTai_0028The main obstacle? “The timeline was a little challenging because there were a lot of kids involved, and you know what havoc kids can wreak on any given day, what’s more a wedding day,” Tai says. “Other than that, Brenna and Andy have so much love surrounding them from friends and family, and that’s what’s important and really I think what makes a wedding easy to photograph well. The details and décor come second to all of that, when the people actually are happy to be with each other and they show it. Then all you have to do is frame and click!”

To see more of this wedding, visit Jenn’s siteTo submit a Wedding of the Week,  email Jessica.

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Jessica Gordon

Jessica Gordon

Jessica Gordon loves discovering new photographers, and learning about historic image-makers who’ve helped evolve the craft. As senior editor for Rangefinder magazine, she’s passionate about clever copy and great design. On the weekends, you can find her biking around Brooklyn and downward dogging in yoga.

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  1. Great job of capturing and creating wedding photos at this event. Light was tough to work with in some of these shots, and you did a great job. Especially under those conditions. Your images look as organic as their wedding. Kudos.

  2. I have photographed quite a few weddings like this lately and have fond the lucky couple a lot more appreciative of my efforts. They are not interested in putting on a show for their friends and invited clients. I am given a lot more freedom and respect, due to the fact that I am one of the services they splurge on. Usually, today these are a “shoot and burn” affair, but I get my minimum day rate. I will photograph these weddings with the same care as my well to do clients. I offer them a free 11×14 print to stir their want for more prints and sometimes it works. The conditions are sometimes a bit trying, and I am always “flying by the seat of my pants”, but I love it. After the ceremony and formal portraits, anything goes. I applaud their efforts to not have uncle Gary photograph the wedding because he has a newer camera. Until they perceive the economy as being better, there will be a lot more of these types of affairs. let’s enjoy them.

  3. Love the photographs. Great seeing the possibilities. The comments are very thoughtful. Nice to read.