Picking up my groom coverage of Chris at Hampton Inn & Suites in West Bend, Wisconsin, here are a few more shots of him dressing and thoughts behind the shots.
What I'm doing with these "detail" shots is incorporating the person in a natural way so it's not just a shot of the suit hanging against a wall, or a dress in front of a window.
By putting Chris in the picture and letting him pick up and brush the suit, it's so much more interesting than "Here's the suit draped over a chair, again."
When I photograph, I'm conscious that every portrait I make is someone important looking at his future self.
It's not just Chris. It's Chris looking at Chris 30 years from now. It's looking at Ashley 30 years from now, so when they look back at these portraits, they connect with that moment of youth, love and beauty that may have been forgotten or put aside.
Now as to whether these are candid or directed, well, Chris is going to put on the jacket at some point, right? The answer is I just make sure it looks as cool as I can make it in the time and conditions I have, in whatever way works best for the shot.
One of the things most pretentious with wedding photographers is this notion that if a shot is staged, coached, directed or posed, it automatically becomes undesirable and that spontaneous moments are the only desirable portraits.
This isn't the New York Times or World War I documentation. It's wedding photography. Play a little and have fun with it.
In some ways I think being bound to pure photojournalism is more restrictive than being open to lighting and direction.
My approach to photography is start the needle at zero and move it whatever way is best for the picture: sometimes direction, and sometimes letting the action flow naturally, rather than being bound to one end of the spectrum or the other.
I'm a wedding photographer and all approaches are fair in my mission of representing a romantic ideal. I'd already photographed enough reality as a newspaper photojournalist.
And for the record, none of the images on this page have seen pixel manipulation other than cropping. They've only been color corrected, which is a process similar to developing a roll of film.
Joel Nisleit Self PortraitSelf portrait of studio owner Joel Nisleit. Joel's skills enable him to capture portraits like this in any location, from home to a parking garage.
Joel Nisleit photographs people from all walks of life who would like their wedding photographed as a fairy tale instead of a documentary. Contact me today so I can serve the aesthetic and historical significance of your wedding.