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  • Katharine Bridges

Capturing the Magic: A Jewish Wedding Photography Story

Updated: Apr 1, 2023

I was recommended for the opportunity to help shoot a wedding by the Kazen family. I had experience with smaller weddings, but never anything as beautiful, extensive and as fulfilling as what this glorious day was for Sara & Ari.

Being chosen as a second photographer for a large Jewish wedding at the Destrehan Plantation was a dream come true for me as a photographer. The wedding was going to be an extravagant affair with all the traditional elements of a Jewish wedding, and I couldn't wait to be a part of it.

On the day of the wedding, I arrived at the plantation early to get my bearings and to meet the lead photographer. We went over the schedule for the day and the different shots that we would each be responsible for capturing. I was excited to be working with such an experienced photographer, and I knew that I would learn a lot from the experience.

As the guests started to arrive, I took some candid shots of them mingling and catching up with each other. It was clear that this was a close-knit community, and there was a palpable sense of joy and excitement in the air.

Before the ceremony began, there was a traditional "kabbalat panim" where the bride received her guests. The groom also received guests, however they were separated from each other. This was a beautiful moment where family and friends had the opportunity to offer their congratulations and well-wishes to the bride. The bride was seated in the most gorgeous of settings, underneath a live oak on an ornate chair, and guests came up to her one by one, offering gifts and kind words.

The ceremony took place outside on the back lawn of the plantation home in front of a gorgeous barn.The bride and groom looked absolutely stunning, and I made sure to capture all of the traditional elements of the ceremony, from the ketubah signing to the breaking of the glass.

After the ceremony, we moved on to the reception, which was held inside of the very large barn on the plantation. The room was beautifully decorated with flowers and candles, and the tables were set with all sorts of delicious food. The dancing was lively and energetic, and I captured shots of the guests laughing, dancing, and enjoying themselves.

As the night wore on, I found myself getting lost in the magic of the event. The energy of the guests was contagious, and I found myself getting swept up in the excitement. I was grateful to be a part of such a special occasion and to have the opportunity to capture the joy and happiness of the day.

Being chosen as a second photographer for a large Jewish wedding at the Destrehan Plantation was an incredible experience. From the traditional ceremony to the lively reception, I was able to capture the magic of the day. I am grateful for the opportunity to have been a part of this special occasion, and I look forward to capturing many more special moments in the future. The location was the beautiful Destrahan Plantation in the heart of the New Orleans area, lined with gorgeous live oak trees and rustic barns and out buildings. A picture perfect place to celebrate a wonderful union.

Now, let me pause you for a minute and let me tell you why this wedding was out of this world. Have you ever seen "My Big Fat Greek Wedding"? Okay, Sara and Ari are not Greek, they are Jewish, but the only way I can describe the absolute LOVE and EXCITEMENT and TRADITION is to parallel it with this movie. Being a part of this, I was swept up in a whirlwind of unconditional family LOVE! On top of being asked to help, I had the honor of working with Mendel Grossbaum from MG Infocus from New York and New Jersey. This man was beyond amazing. His eye for photography is second to none and I hope that my images were exactly what he needed for a second photographer.


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