When I left The Washington Times as a photojournalist to predominantly photograph weddings, I thought my days of having police tell me that they could confiscate my cameras for something I photographed were in the rear view mirror. I was wrong…
After a beautiful ceremony at Holy Trinity in Georgetown, everyone headed back to Katie’s mom’s place in Arlington for a luncheon. During that time, Katie and Win and the wedding party wanted to get some group portraits taken around the property and across the street near the Marine Corps Memorial with the DC monuments off in the background.
We started out photographing on the property in a garden surrounded by plants and trees that just happens to be next to Ft. Myers and Arlington Cemetery. It was pretty and after we were done, we took off walking to the Marine Corps Memorial park. Along the way, we turned around to see multiple military police cars stop the last of the bridal party that was walking down the block. Hmmmmm. The police must be friends with someone, want to say congratulations maybe, want to give us a police escort across the street… Nope.
Toni and I (both photojournalists) went back to see what was happening in time to hear one of the officers telling the Matron Of Honor that we were not allowed to photograph where we were because there was a military checkpoint in the vicinity and that he could “technically” sieze my cameras. Wait, what?!?!
I’m not sure if he thought we were trying to photograph the wedding party with the checkpoint in the background barely visible through the trees not even in the direction we were taking photographs. I’ve come up with some cool places to photograph wedding parties before but I’m pretty sure that a military checkpoint wouldn’t make the list and that maybe it was the trees and flowers that were surrounding the wedding party that might have been the backdrop in our photographs (as you can see in the photograph of the Bridal Party).
In the end, they decided just to warn us after telling us not to take their photograph and after repeating that they could seize my cameras a bunch more times. I’m not sure who would have come more unglued – me or my bride if they had pushed it further. I really wished Katie’s videographer would have been around for that. Kurt who was doing her videography as a gift spends his weeks as a 1st Amendment lawyer who’s firm represents the National Press Photographer’s Assoc. (NPPA) as well as The Washington Post, Gannett… That would have been a fun one!
But I digress… Thankfully everything else went pretty smoothly!
Katie spent the morning getting ready with her girls which is always fun. The colors she picked out for them was beautiful and it didn’t hurt that the bridal party would have looked stunning in pretty much anything! Of course the flower girls and ring bearers were just as cute. Most of Win’s family came from Thailand for the wedding. My favorite photograph of him is him hugging his grandmother while getting ready.
Katie is a teacher at Holy Trinity so she invited any of her students that wanted to come to attend the ceremony. It was so cute watching them look on from the balcony and I love the photo of her stopping during the recessional to say hi.
After the group photos (and our awesome chit chat with the Military Police), Katie and Win took the two of us to Arlington Cemetery. Katie’s father was in the Navy and sadly passed away in 2009 so both of them wanted to visit on their wedding day. It was such an amazing moment as the two of them visited his gravesite to say a prayer. At the last moment, they reached up to touch the stone. It was definitely a moment that I was shooting through the tears in my eyes. I hope the photographs do justice to how wonderful a moment it was.
Katie and Win met while working at the Rhodeside Grill in Clarendon so after the luncheon, the wedding party decided to head there for a drink before the reception where Win got to pour his wife a beer.
The reception was held at the Army Navy Country Club in Arlington. Sara Franklin from Social Scene Events did an amazing job transforming the space and incorporating some elements from Win’s Thai heritage. The rest of the night was drinking and dancing sprinkled with a few speeches and was a blast.
Toni and I want to wish both of you all the best. I assume that you are as happy as we are that we were “allowed” to keep your photographs! Ha.
Ceremony Location: Holy Trinity Catholic Church
Reception Location + Caterer: Army Navy Country Club
Wedding Planner: Social Scene Events | Sara Franklin | 703.516.4224
Florist: Heavenly Hydrangeas | Susan Poneman | 703.534.1308
Photographer: Connor Studios | Michael Connor + Toni Sandys | 202.527.9768