Where Luck Meets Preparation

Before I run off to begin a busy fun-filled weekend (community park party, mom coming to visit from NY, Legoland, oh yeah!), I wanted to briefly share something I came across when I was editing Sara + Will’s wedding (if you missed it, you can find the post HERE). This was one of my first photos on the card, but I don’t recall taking it at all. I remembered looking at the mirror and being intrigued, but I didn’t think I actually photographed it.

Sara + Will were married at Beaver Hollow, which happened to be a venue where I had photographed a wedding previously. Normally if I were photographing a session somewhere unfamiliar (and it was within reasonable driving distance) I would scout it out prior to the day of the wedding or session. In this case I showed up early to check out the property on the day of so I could just see it in the light of this particular day, while their ceremony and reception sites were being set up. As I mentioned before, I saw this mirror and was intrigued enough to snap a quick shot of it. What I didn’t realize until after the wedding was over was that I had pre-visualized my favorite (and compositionally most interesting) shot of the day.

It wasn’t something I had done intentionally, but clearly it was effective. When we were winding down wedding party photos we wandered down toward the beach on the left side of the setup and I scanned for inspiration. I needed to quickly decide what my next composition would be. Time was ticking and I had a huge group looking to me for direction. As I looked around it just so happens that I was in the exact same spot as I was when I took that first photo above and what I saw was the exact same framing. I had already subconsciously decided that this shot worked and now all I needed was my bride and groom.

Was this the result of luck? Or was it preparation? I’d like to think it was that awesome place where luck and preparation come together and allow us to do our best work. No matter what you call it, I’ve been doing what I can to make this more of a norm than an anomaly in my creative process. Now when I’m out and about and I see beautiful light in an unexpected place or an opportunity for a really unique composition I snap a quick photo with my phone to add to my digital (and hopefully mental!) inspiration archive. Because I never know when I could end up in one of those spots, or a similar situation, again. And then next time luck decides to shine on me, I want to make sure I’m fully prepared for it!

Have a great weekend everyone!!


Powered by Facebook Comments

Ashley Goodwin - December 17, 2011 - 3:50 pm

Oooh. Good one! I always try to prepare, but often just wind up feeling unprepared. The mirror shot was one of my favs, too! SO INTERESTING! Gorgeous wedding, too. :)

Sara Wilbur - December 17, 2011 - 6:15 pm

I went back to the original post 3 or 4 times when you posted it just to look at that mirror photo again - LOVE it!

Have to Have it Shot - Erin & Andrew in St. Helena | Sara Wilbur Photography - January 10, 2012 - 11:23 am

[...] I had the opportunity to second shoot with TJ Salsman, and I remembered Erin Oveis Brant’s post about pre-visualizing a special [...]

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *



There was an error submitting your comment. Please try again.