Wedding Ceremonies in Philadelphia
Susan Stripling Photography

Wedding Ceremonies in Philadelphia

While it can be very easy to focus only on the bride and groom during a wedding ceremony, I find that there are often incredible emotional reactions from their families and friends as well. 

Christ Church wedding in Philadelphia

During this particular Christ Church wedding ceremony in Philadelphia in 2011 I noticed that the bride’s mother was becoming increasingly emotional as the ceremony progressed. 

This incredible old church had a wraparound balcony that surrounded three sides of the sanctuary. Midway through the ceremony I went into the balcony to document the scene from a different angle. I realized that this unique bird’s eye view gave me a great perspective on not only the bride and groom, but on the bride’s mother in the pew behind them. 

Philadelphia wedding photojournalism

In situations where emotions are running high I have noticed that many photographers frantically click the shutter out of fear of missing the moment. 

I prefer to work more deliberately, observing the scene around me and only firing when I know that I have my shot. I kept one eye on the bride and groom and the other eye on the bride’s mother as the emotions developed. 

The second the mother of the bride raised her tissue to her eye I knew that this was my chance. This final photograph shows not only the action of the bride and groom, but the reaction of her mother. 

I chose to process this image in black and white so that the viewer could focus solely on the moment occurring. This remains one of my favorite photographs from the entire 2011 wedding season. 

I entered this image into the Wedding Photojournalism category of the 16x20 International Print Competition at WPPI where it scored well.

Location: 20 N American St, Philadelphia, PA 19106.

Keywords: philadelphia (108). 1/320; f/2.8; ISO 7200; 125.0 mm.