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On The Spot

On The Spot: With Alicia Daw, Lead Photographer at Alicia Ann Photographers

 

Alicia Daw Gives Us An Exclusive Sneak Peek Behind The Lens..

We would not be able to create the amazing weddings that we do without our truly incredible network of vendors. From florists to photographers to stationers, we are lucky to know some of the most talented and creative pioneers in their industry. For our new weekly segment, we’ll be featuring our partner vendors and introducing you to their story and the amazing work they do. This week, we’d like to introduce you to Alicia Daw, lead photographer at Alicia Ann Photographers (based in Connecticut). Alicia, a lifetime photographer, has travelled the world to shoot stunning wedding and engagement photos. We caught up with the busy jetsetter to learn more about her background, inspiration, and truly memorable weddings she won’t soon forget (warning: have your tissues ready).

 
 
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Tell us a little about your background. How long have you been working in photography?

I started with photography when I was 11 or 12 year old, but I have been shooting weddings for 10 years and have been full time for 7.

That’s a long time! What first drew you to the art?

I love looking at black and white photos from Europe and the WWII era. Something about a timeless, classic black and white, grainy image drew me in and told such a powerful story. When I began photographing weddings, I wanted my images to do the same thing generations from now.

What led you to found Alicia Ann Photographers?

I lived in Copenhagen, Denmark for 5 years and that is where I began photographing weddings. When I decided it was time to move home, I took a huge risk and put all of my eggs in one basket by deciding to go full-time with photography. I had no idea what I was doing. I never took a business class, and I never took a photography class, but I was determined to make it work. 7 years later, I can look back and say it was one of the best decisions I ever made. I love working for myself, and I love having a small team of photographers under me.

So what do you love most about wedding photography?

It's such a cliché answer but, truly, the couples. We connect more with some over others, but many of my clients have become dear friends. Some of their stories have changed me as a person. Many of them, and the legacies they come from, have helped shape my view on marriage.

Aside from the couples, where do you draw your daily inspiration?

A quick look at my website or Instagram will tell you that I draw a ton of inspiration from Europe and architecture, as well as black and white photography. I am drawn to minimalism in photography, as well as the emotional aspect of it. When those two things are combined, my brain nearly explodes!

How would you describe your style?

Genuine, emotional, and timeless.

Do you have a favorite recent photo?

How can I choose just one?! Here are three of my favorites:

 
 
I love this image of Liz getting ready, as she slowly runs her fingers through the fabric of her veil on her wedding day.

I love this image of Liz getting ready, as she slowly runs her fingers through the fabric of her veil on her wedding day.

 
 
The next image is one that was taken in Paris, for an engagement session. It ended up pouring that day, but we made the best of it—and I love this intimate moment that I was able to capture of Marieke and Jasper huddled under the same umbrella.

The next image is one that was taken in Paris, for an engagement session. It ended up pouring that day, but we made the best of it—and I love this intimate moment that I was able to capture of Marieke and Jasper huddled under the same umbrella.

 
 
Lastly is this image of the quiet and reflective moment of silence that Ryan had right before he left his hotel room to go marry his amazing bride. I love everything about this image—the light, the outfit, the look on his face…and nobody can deny that he is a very handsome man! This portrait, to me, represents what I want every wedding portrait to be.

Lastly is this image of the quiet and reflective moment of silence that Ryan had right before he left his hotel room to go marry his amazing bride. I love everything about this image—the light, the outfit, the look on his face…and nobody can deny that he is a very handsome man! This portrait, to me, represents what I want every wedding portrait to be.

 
 

Ok, last question! I know this is a tough one, but what wedding, to date, did you most enjoy being a part of—and why? 

Oh goodness. This is such a hard question. I would say there are two weddings that really stick out to me. The first was in Denmark, at a gorgeous castle. It was Disney themed, which made me roll my eyes at first, but they did Disney right. The entire wedding was a production, which was no surprise since both the bride and groom were actors and vocalists. The groom made his grand entry into the courtyard on horseback before the ceremony started, at which point he led all the guests inside. During the cocktail hour, there was a sword fight when a "villain" tried to capture the bride. The groom, of course, won. Guests were escorted from cocktail hour into the dining room by a full cast singing "Be Our Guest”—complete with costumes from Beauty and the Beast—and Lumiere was the toastmaster for the evening. The entire evening continued with surprises and enchantment for each of the guests. It was truly a magical wedding. The wedding was so magical that I had to blog it in five parts. (It can be viewed here.)

The second wedding that sticks out is one that, to this day, still tugs so strongly on my heartstrings. The bride and groom met—and quickly fell in love—when Eleni began taking care of Rich's mother while she was in treatment for cancer. Rich's mom beat the cancer, but over the course of a few years was diagnosed with 7 different kinds of cancer. The week of their wedding, Eleni called me and said, “I just want you to know that Laura (Rich’s mom) isn’t doing well. We aren’t sure if she will make it to the wedding, and we don’t know what will happen if she passes before Saturday.” I didn't hear anything else from her that week, and when I showed up on the wedding day, I asked how Laura was doing. Eleni said she had woken up in hospice care that morning and declared, “Today is the day my son gets married, and I've looked forward to my mother-son dance with him my entire life. Take me to that wedding!” She was extremely thin and frail, but she was so strong on the inside! When it came time for the mother-son dance, Rich practically had to carry her to the dance floor, and he held her as they slowly swayed back and forth to “I'll Stand By You.” There wasn't a dry eye in the entire room, including my own, as Laura melted into her only son’s chest. It was a moment that forever changed me and showed me the importance of what I do. Not long after, Laura passed away, and the image of her and Rich dancing was one of the ones they used at her wake and funeral.

 
 
 
 

Alicia Daw’s work really speaks for itself—to capture such a special day in such a special way is absolutely priceless. To learn more about Alicia Ann Photography and their services, visit their website at www.aliciaannphotographers.com. To learn more about our wedding services (and the other great vendors we work with!), click here.

Thank you so much for joining us today! We'll see you next time "On The Spot"

Have a wonderful weekend!

Björn VW

Were you inspired by Alicia's story? Show her some love by posting your comments below!