I always get a good feeling inside when someone mentions about how my wedding work inspires theirs. But I have never imagined how good it feels when a dear friend tells me that my own wedding day inspired his. Tomo was a guest at my wedding years ago in Seattle. It was his first experience at a Holy Matrimony held in a church. Apparently, he felt something different yet good that day that he decided that when the time came for him to tie the knot, it would have to be in a church.
How I met Tomo is quiet an interesting story on its own. It was back in the good old college days, when I volunteered to help an international student orientation. He was the wide-eyed Japanese who just arrived in Seattle on a one-year exchange program. Everything was new and foreign to him. And when it was time for us to go back, I offered him a ride home, afraid that he might have gotten lost taking the bus. What was supposed to be a short car ride to his place became a full-day city tour around Seattle and the beginning of our friendship. We visited all the landmarks – Pike Place and Queen Anne, ate local fare and talked about our love for sports. It was an unforgettable day.
So I was deeply honored when Tomo asked me to shoot his wedding in Fukuoka last month. I arrived in Japan a day before their wedding and got the chance to spend the day with them. It was my first time meeting Kumiko, and I knew instantly how my dear friend fell in love with her. She is bubbly, cheerful and intelligent, and they’ve known each other since high school. They make one very sweet couple indeed.
It was the first ever experience for me to shoot in Japan. Language would be the greatest barrier and my greatest challenge. So I asked Tomo to give me a crash course in Japanese. It was proved invaluable, especially when taking group photos! It was an experience I will take with me for a long time. New culture, new friends, and I was truly inspired! Here are a few of my favorite shots of the day that I'd like to share with you.
Congratulations Tomo and Kumiko! May your journey together be everlasting… and thank you for allowing me to be a part of it!
Saiko desu! J