how we do + what we value

^ See that? That’s us, in late 2015, in the rain, about 1 minute after we got engaged. I can still feel the electricity when I look at that photo. I can feel the cold and the wet and my mascara running into my eyes. I can feel the pure joy and excitement. I can smell the fall air. I can re-live the moment all over again. This is what I feel when I decide how to photograph a wedding.

We basically LIVE for the opportunity to give these same feelings to our clients when they look at their wedding photos. Let me give you a rundown of what we value in wedding photography and how we approach weddings. I’m warning you right now that this page is probably gonna be more on the serious side, ’cause I want you to understand how seriously we actually take our jobs behind our seemingly carefree exteriors. photos of us on this page by Jennifer Van Son Photography

Having married each other in 2016, we feel like we’re SUPER equipped to capture amazing memories, time after time, not just from a photographer’s perspective but also from a client’s. What we think is the most important definitely changed after we received our own wedding photos.

Aside from just generally capturing the day as it unfolds, we try to search out certain aspects — emotion, fun, and little quirks that make your day unique. We look at a wedding as a WEDDING, not a photo shoot. Let me get a little more specific.

**NOTE** the following is what happens at what for us is a “typical” wedding. MOST of our clients consist of a bride and a groom, though we have shot (and would LOVE to shoot more) LGBTQ weddings. But they aren’t “typical” for us currently. So please, if you are not a straight couple, try not to be offended by your under-representation in the following post. Replace “groom” and “bride” with whatever you identify with. We love everyone (except d-bags, because nobody likes d-bags).

Getting Ready

We arrive (Mat at the guys’ place, Sara at the girls’ place) about 1 hour before the dress goes on. We stay relatively quiet, allowing you and your people to get used to us being there, priming y’all for actively consciously ignoring our existence if we aren’t directly talking to you. Our eyeballs search for pretty details, quiet moments, funny stuff, anybody freaking out or crying, hugging, etc. If you invite us to partake in your pre-wedding alcohol and snacks, we probably will. Just saying.

If you want to, we may take any excess time here to do a few semi-formal bridal or groom portraits. Again, we’ll likely take a candid-looking approach, and make it look like you weren’t totally posing for a photo.


This is where Mat+Sara the Well-Oiled Machine really comes into play. We know where to be and when to make sure we don’t miss anything. You *need* to be able to see exactly how you looked at each other while you made all those mushy promises. We want to get you, your parents, wedding party, and guests crying… at the saaame tiiiime.

A word about iPads taking up the entire aisle

We in no way require unplugged ceremonies, but I can’t say I don’t love them. I love them. It’s way easier to take photos of the walk down the aisle when we’re not having to stretch ourselves around 5 ipads in the aisle… I totally understand though, wanting to have other perspectives and allow your guests to take photos during the ceremony, so, like, do you. You will get no pressure or flak from us.

Here’s a rundown of our regular routine, during an “average”, somewhat traditional ceremony:

Sara crouches at the front, snapping back and forth between the people walking down the aisle and the groom. Mat is at the back, prepping to stealthily get shots of the bride from the back coming down the aisle and the ever-important groom’s face shot (though as I said, I’m at the front snapping back and forth for a closer view of what I always hope are tears in the groom’s eyes).

Bringin’ it home

Sara moves off to the side to start catching facial expressions of the groom, and the people in the audience. Mat moves back to get a wider shot of the full ceremony scene with everyone seated and the couple at the front. Then he moves off to Sara’s opposing side to catch the face of the bride. About half way through, we switch sides (IN STEALTHMODE ALWAYS) and then during the exchange of the rings Sara moves back into the aisle near the front while Mat kinda goes wherever he feels like. For the kiss, usually Sara stays in the same spot and Mat either goes to the back or to the front if there’s a place to hide, to attempt that shot where everybody is in the background clapping and the couple is kissing, but this isn’t always possible, so no promises. We take casual shots of the signing (you do not need to look at us and smile and arrange the flowers artfully or whatever bullshit) and then run backwards down the aisle to catch your announcement and exit. Yay! You’re married!