Bride and Groom Exchange Gifts at Pontchartrain hotel
Michael Caswell Photography

Bride and Groom Exchange Gifts at Pontchartrain hotel

This couple had a little bit of an unusual and challenging request. They wanted to exchange gifts and letters together (in the same room) before their ceremony at Ursuline Academy, but they did not want to have a first look. So, after scoping out the available space in the Pontchartrain Hotel where they were getting ready, I suggested that instead of trying to do this in a common area of the hotel like the lobby or lounge (which would have the typical flow of random hotel guests walking through), simply sitting back to back on the corner of the bed in the bride's suite would be a more private and intimate setting for this moment.

It took some careful coordination and maneuvering with the help of wedding planner CJ of Evermore Weddings to get the two of them in this position while ensuring they didn't inadvertently see each other, but it went off without a hitch!

While a strict adherence to a purely photojournalistic wedding photography approach would arguably preclude me from influencing the stories that I am capturing, realistically speaking there are times during the wedding day when I have to help arrange a particular interaction or scene that the couple wants.

The reception took place at Felicity Church.

Location: 2031 St Charles Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130.