Josh & Shannon from Jessie Dains

About

Josh has 10 Years Photography experience and has shot over 800 amazing weddings to date. He is a people person and really takes the time to understand what is important to you on your special day. He has a magical way of making the quietest or shy person in the room shine through the lens. With his charm and witty banter, he brings out the best in people.

When Josh isn’t behind the camera you can find him with the other loves of his life. The Ocean, Shannon, Jock and Pixie – With a new Mini Kelly addition on the way in February

Shannon will be your main point of contact with Jessie Dains. Highly organised, personable and fun! She is Producer/Second shooter and will ensure throughout the process you will have everything you need.

When she is not working you will find her in the garden, eating Mexican food or enjoying her days with the people she loves.

Here we have an exclusive interview with Josh on all things photography:

What inspired you to take up photography?

I think for me, it comes naturally! I find it really easy to see moments. One of my earliest memories was when I was in early primary school and my mum would drive me to school every day. She would always be playing blues music on the radio. I remember staring out the window and I would always see these moments in time that would look amazing as the blues music was playing. Almost like putting together a film clip together in my head every day to blues music. This would explain why old school blues music is my favourite: artists like Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, Son House, and BB King. Then as I got older, every time I would look anywhere, or at anything, still from a very young age, I would see moments that I thought would be an amazing photo. It could be when mum and dad were talking, and then I would see dad laugh, then I would think BOOM that would of been a great shot. It can be really exhausting sometimes – to be constantly seeing beautiful moments, and always framing up something, or looking at the lines, tones, texture, or looking at someone thinking about how amazing their face is, or how honest their smile is. I sometimes get a few funny looks when people see me staring at them haha.

Over the years I have learned to switch off ‘my eye’ I can go to a location, or a friends BBQ with ‘my eye’ off now and not really take in the ‘perfect shot’. I’ll sometimes say to my wife I have to go to this location for a location scout, and she will say: ‘Haven’t you been there before why are you going?’ and I’ll say ‘When I was there I didn’t really have my eye on, so I need to go have a proper look’. I think being able to see moments in time that would make a great photo is a real gift, I think if you have the gift you should harness it, and never let it go. I always try and encourage people who I see have it to use their talent and work hard at it.

What do you love about photography?

I love photography because it can change lives, and change the world. I love it because I can provide a living for my family. I love it because the feeling I get when I see people crying because of the pictures I have captured on their wedding day makes me happy. Photography is fun, it’s personal, it’s challenging, I love that you are always learning. I love being able to take nice photos of my wife when she was pregnant, and then when my son was born. I love that I can be a photographer until the day I die. I love that I get to travel the world. I love that photojournalists put their lives on the line to bring attention to the serious issues happening around the world, and if they didn’t go and get these shots then most of us would not know what atrocities have been happening. I love that photography is constantly changing. I love awesome cameras, I love drinking coffee, and red wine ;). I love that photos last forever.

Do you remember the first photo you took? What was it?

I don’t remember the first photo I took, but I remember the first photo that I liked. A friend and I were both getting into photography and we went on a bit of a camera adventure. I found this tree stump that had been cut down very low, only about 1 foot of the ground. I stood right over the top of the stump and shot directly down on the stump. I shot it on film, and in black and white. There were so many beautiful patterns in the timber and bark. I remember feeling very proud of myself.

Why wedding photography in particular?

Because I like watching people make out, I like when the mother of the bride gives me ham sandwiches ….. jokes.

I have photographed many styles throughout my career, mostly as a commercial photographer in my other business www.jackharlem.com, but I love all styles.

I love the raw emotion you see on a wedding day. Everyone wears their heart on their sleeve. When I first meet with couple it’s like we start a friendship, and every time we meet that bond grows and grows. By the time the wedding comes along I know their story, I know how they met, where they met, how the proposal went down, I know about their families, I like to know as much about a couple as possible. The more I do know the better I am at putting together meaningful images that fit together as a beautiful story.

When the day finally arrives, I almost feel like I’m a guest at their wedding! I’m excited for them, it’s a beautiful build up, that I can’t help but get swept up in. I feel really honoured that people like my wedding photography, and allow me to document their day.

I love the emotion family and friends show, I love seeing two people make it official, and declaring it to the world that they would want no one else for the rest of their life, other than the person standing across from them.

Ever since I can remember I have loved going to wedding. I love the food, the drinking, having all of your best friends in the one location. I love the party. I love seeing my close friends say ‘I do’. It really is just an amazing celebration. I love seeing both sides of the family come together for the first time and dance their bloody asses off. I love seeing the groom cry; I love the build-up of seeing the bride’s dress. Now that I shoot weddings for a living I get to relive weddings over and over, but now I have a camera in my hand. Maybe a little like the wedding crasher? Or the wedding photographer crasher?

I don’t know if I’m a cry baby, or I just have a real soft spot for people pouring their hearts out to each other, but I pretty much cry at every wedding I photograph. It can be from the smallest things: like seeing their pet dog run down the aisle with the rings around its neck, (we have two dogs), or seeing a dad cry when he sees his daughter in her wedding dress. I can cry when I’m at a wedding because it makes me think back to when I married Shannon. I think the more weddings I shoot the more I get more sensitive to what everyone else is feeling.