2015 was another great year for us! We’ve been photographing documentary-style weddings since 2002, but in many ways it felt brand new! For several reasons, but perhaps the biggest is that this was the first year that Beth and I worked together as husband and wife! Beth is an amazing partner (in business and as my wife!), supremely talented, and clearly has taken Ray Anthony Photography into her arms which has become essential to our success! She is the “smile” in our business (often baking fresh cookies or banana bread, neatly wrapping them and bringing as gifts to our couples’ meetings and engagement sessions). She wins the hearts of our brides, often becoming their best friend on the wedding day, bringing along her suitcase on wheels which is filled with just about everything you can imagine as “emergency kit.” She is the warm voice on the phone and the one who communicates with all our couples (past, current, and inquiring) with the happiest emails you could ever receive! 2015 was also our first year living back in Michigan (having been in Las Vegas and California since 2007). It’s cold, yes, but moving “home” and near our showroom in downtown Birmingham, has been the best business decision we could have ever made! We are happy living here full time and look forward to many years of becoming a part of our Birmingham community! 2015 was also the year that I made a complete change in my camera gear! Deciding to lighten my load, and take advantage of the latest technology, I ditched my Canon DSLR gear for the mirrorless Fujifilm X Series cameras and lenses. I love my new equipment and currently shoot with the Fuji X-T1 cameras. I was nervous learning new gear (having been a Canon photographer for over fifteen years!), but the results speak for themselves! Every photo shown on this post was captured with the Fuji X-T1’s! Lastly, 2015 was a banner year because of the talent of my associates David Yarnall, Nicole Duhaime and Jack Scicluna! David is my rock! He has been with us now since 2009! In fact, he is so fantastic, we are beginning to accept commissions for him to photograph as the lead photographer on his own weddings. Nicole completed her forth year with us and has blossomed before our eyes! She was my assistant for the first couple of years (carrying my equipment and helping with off-camera lighting – which Beth now has taken over!). Over the last couple of years, she began working as an apprentice photographer, bringing her camera to our weddings, taking on the duties of photographing the bride’s wedding dress, shoes and other details, as well as shooting over my shoulder throughout the entire wedding day! Her images are so good that much of them make the final cut and get posted in our blog! We hope to have her working more this summer in a second photographer role and have big plans for her future! She also has become our post-production specialist, color correcting our photos and designing wedding albums! Jack is our newest addition…With David taking on more solo weddings, Jack will replace David as our second photographer when need be. He is a talented guy, with a great eye and a solid background as an experienced professional photographer! Lastly, 2015 was a landmark year because it is the first year that same-sex couples in the United States could become legally married. We were honored to photograph our good friend Dave (long time associate with Carolyn Hefner of The China Closet) and his partner Bob for our last wedding of the year! So, yes, 2015 was very good to us, giving us high, high hopes for 2016 and beyond!
As we do every year during the slow season, we “mined” through all of the wedding photos captured in 2015 to find the gems! We typically try to keep this “best of” list to 20 images, but finally settled on 22! As is always the case each year, not every wedding is represented (our apologies to our 2015 couples whose images are not here!). Our criterium is not choose the best photo from each wedding. Every wedding was considered! We collected all our favorites from all of the weddings and narrowed them down based on what we thought were our very best of the year! All the images are real, uncontrived documentary moments – except two. If you know anything about us, this will not surprise you! Documentary wedding photography is our niche and we pride ourselves with excelling in the art of visual story-telling. A couple of the images, however are contrived, (meaning they required my interaction to make them happen)! We always do a small percentage of portraits at our weddings, but we always leave these kind of photos off the blog post. We felt that the two “contrived” images are so good, however, we decided to include them here (which explains why we have 22 photos and not the traditional top 20!). One is the wedding party portrait in downtown Detroit with the “People Mover” train above them, and the other is the couple jumping into the river (I suggested they do so and climbed into the river to capture the moment! That effort alone should be enough to lay aside any doubt!). Please forgive us if this somehow offends any of the documentary purists who are visiting!
Enjoy the photos! We would love to hear from you! Please let us know which is your favorite by replying at the bottom of the post!