If you’re new to the world of wedding blogs, maybe you’ve found yourself drooling over a particularly gorgeous wedding video or photos, when suddenly you think “But wait… where are all the guests?” or “Why are there three couples at this one wedding?”
Welcome to the fantasy world of fake weddings! Or as we wedding nerds like to call them, “styled shoots” or “inspiration shoots” or “stylized weddings.” I’ve blogged some videos from styled shoots in the past – and we’ve had a number of inspiration shoots featured on some pretty sweet blogs – but I wanted to take a second to break down this oddity for those of you who may be wondering why on earth we go through so much trouble for parties with no guests.
Images by D. Park Photography
First: an example! When I heard that Baz Luhrmann was adapting F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby for the big screen, I squealed like the movie geek fangirl that I am. So naturally, when I was invited to be a part of a styled shoot inspired by the novel and forthcoming movie, I squealed again. Carmen at Expressionary Events pulled together a plethora of talented pros to imagine a wedding day inspired by Gatsby, but with a modern twist.
Wedding Inspiration from The Great Gatsby from Jakfoto Films on Vimeo.
Now that you’ve seen the “what,” let’s talk about the “why” of wedding inspiration shoots:
1. To provide inspiration (duh).
Our number one hope is that brides and grooms will find in these inspiration shoots some new, creative elements to incorporate into their own wedding celebrations.
Here’s the important part: This is not a competition. I’ve seen people rag on inspiration shoots because “nobody could do that at a real wedding.” First of all, you’d be surprised at what imagination can accomplish, even on a tight budget. Second, we’re not doing this to outshine your wedding or to set some sort of unattainable goal. We simply hope to offer some new ideas and approaches to couples planning their own real weddings. As a vendor, I’m thrilled if you discover a color scheme you love, a new way to do escort cards, a unique unity ceremony, or if you just smile and move along.
2. To loosen the chains of “should!”
Some of the things vendors do for inspiration shoots are nontraditional, weird, even a little crazy. One of the reasons we push the proverbial envelope is just to introduce new ideas into the wedding world! For example, the gorgeous architecturally-inspired paintings that Commemory Fine Art created for the Gatsby shoot are not the type of thing that you’ll see at every wedding, and I don’t expect every couple to now have a guestbook painting or custom table number paintings… but I do hope that these images invite couples to imagine things like guestbooks and table numbers in a different way. I don’t like barriers around what weddings “should be.” Re-imagine your wedding day and prioritize details that are significant and exciting to you and your partner!
3. We’re artists, and we like to play.
I love working with each and every couple and letting their story guide the shape of their unique wedding film. I LOVE it. But variety is the spice of life, and sometimes it’s fun to let my own imagination call the shots! Inspiration shoots give wedding pros the freedom to try things they’ve been longing to try and to take risks in a situation where your only client is yourself. I get to satisfy my craving for a really incredible cake (see below) or a geeky glam wedding… and maybe in doing so, the inspiration video will reach a real couple who’s aiming for just that sort of wedding, and we’ll become wedding/vendor super SOULMATES! (fingers crossed!!)
For the Gatsby shoot, I took a little time behind the scenes to ask some of the vendors about their inspiration, and their contribution to the shoot. It’s always neat to hear the ideas behind the images.
Great Gatsby Inspiration: Behind The Scenes from Jakfoto Films on Vimeo.
Photography: D. Park Photography – For more photos, click here!
Event Styling and Design and Invitation Favor/Box – Expressionary Events
Reception Venue: The Sky Room
Cake: A Wish and a Whisk
Specialty Whiskey Bar: Night Owl Productions
Candy Bar: Candee by Sandee
Cigar Rolling Station: El Canito Cigar Rolling
Floral Design: Bonne Fleur
Live Music: Scott Cummings Music
Bridal Gowns: Bridal Elegance
Evening Clutches: Belucci Couture
Guestbook and Table Art: Commemory Fine Art
Linens and Chiavari Chairs: Designer Specialty Linens
Hair and Makeup: Rock Me Up
Wardrobe Styling: Styled by Connie
Tuxedo and Men’s Attire: Friar Tux Shop
Calligraphy: Calligraphy Katrina
Lighting: Premiere Events Group
Evening Gowns: Tiana Vega Collection
Models: Christine Bailey, Chloe Atnip, Kanda May, Andre Bolourchi, Trevor Williams, and Emmanuel Gonzalez
Hopefully you’ve learned a little something about wedding inspiration shoots! What elements of the Great Gatsby themed video inspired you? What did you think of Baz Luhrmann’s interpretation of Gatsby? Have you gotten any fabulous wedding ideas from styled shoots? Leave a comment, and keep an eye on the blog because I’ll be posting more awesome Geek Chic inspiration soon!