Julianne and Steven’s anniversary shoot

I think that sometimes the photographic community over-emphasizes the importance of portraits on the wedding day. Partially this is because weddings are filled with so many moments and connections between so many people that demand skillful, emotional documentation. But it’s also this: Awesome portraits are the only part of the experience that can happen on another day.

Of course, one argument — that it is a gigantic, expensive pain to get the outfits on and do the hair and makeup again — is very, very true. But the other thing you hear is “You will never look better than on your wedding day!”

Well … maybe. Or after all that craziness, you can say “You know what? My life isn’t over. I’m going to keep working hard, and I can look better than ever next year, and then even better the year after that.” And that calls for some photos.

That’s exactly what Julianne and Steven did. They wanted to do a shoot to commemorate not just their fourth anniversary, but all of the hard work they’ve been doing to live and eat right, with Julianne alone losing 90 pounds over the past two years.

And it was an amazing experience. They looked fantastic, their connection is so strong and visible, and I could have kept shooting them for hours. Did all the fitness work pay off? Look at that last photo and you tell me. They are wedding photographers themselves, and because the cobbler’s kids have no shoes, they told me they have no good photos of themselves together.

Well, we changed that. They said they’d love to do a shoot with me every year, and hope to look even more amazing next year. I absolutely love that attitude. As someone in the best shape of my life at the not-so-tender age of thirty-mumble-mumble, I’d love to see a lot more people do this challenge. Marriage is just the beginning of a new, even better life.

Meredith S - Soo good, Ryan! :)

Jeanine Ringer - These are amazing! And I love the sentiment, that’s exactly how I feel, that the wedding is just one great day out of many instead of the only. I love the idea of photos outside of the day itself. Such a beautiful couple and some amazingly framed shots.

Derek - Phenomenal work Ryan! Love the shot of them in the stone hallway and the one of Julianne picking Steve up, awesome!

Jimmy - That first one is amazing! Good work Julianne!

Eduardo Suastegui - Lovely set, Ryan. They should be very happy with these photos.

heather nan - Congrats on one year to the couple. Lovely images to document their love. Well done as always.

Lara - I love these photos so much, Ryan, and I love what you wrote at the beginning. They look so happy. And Julianne, you look amazing.

thao trinh - Such awesome imagery! Loved the last one of Julianne picking up Steven…cute!

Teresa K - Gorgeous set of images…they look so healthy, happy, and in love!!

rahul - awesome work!!!!!! i love them all!!!

Amanda Basteen - GORGEOUS!

Mike - Really great set, Ryan!

John Mueller - They’re both looking fantastic, and you can see that newlywed energy is still there. Hope it stays forever. Seems like a very fun couple.

Julianne Markow - I can’t thank you enough, these photos are just unbelievable! They are everything I thought they would be and more. Wow, it feels amazing to have these photos of us, I can not wait to literally plaster our walls with these. wow wow wow, thank you sooooooo much!

Robert Lundell - Amazing attitude and photos!
Did you use any lighting setups for this photos or is it all natural light?

Elissa Rïnehart - Beautiful, crazy beautiful.

Adel Gainullin - brilliant work)) iloveall this photos).

Rubi Red - The one black & white, your head on his shoulder, your eyes closed…made me instantly teary-eyed. AMAZING work to capture the exact moment of the esscence of LOVE ♥♥ WOW (funny I typed WOW *before* seeing Jules’ post) Kudos to Ryan, beautiful pictures! =)

Sean Molin - You know… sometimes the most inspiring shots to me are the ones with noticeable chroma noise. They send me back to earth and realize what’s important… what the image conveys, not the technical perfection. I’ve seen shots like that from you from time to time and it always does so much for refocusing me.

Bec - So beautiful!! That last one is fun! I don’t think I could pick a favourite, they are all so lovely. Ryan, your words at the start set the perfect tone.

Steve Markow - Ryan, these are unbelievable. There’s no other photographer in the world we would have wanted to do this for us. We are so lucky. Thank you so much!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Darin Collison - These are really slightly somewhat beautiful. And the connection is what comes through strongest.

Nessa K - I’ve probably looked at these 4 or 5 times now. They never stop being beautiful. <3

Aaron D - Ryan, these are beautiful shots as always. Steve and Julieanne look fantastic.
I just love your words. We all love taking wedding photos and they are very important but it is the years after that count the most. It’s great to be able to create a story over years that shows the love grow in the couple. Keeping healthy is certainly very important and good diet and fitness helps with keeping the fire strong :)

Bogdan Radu - A good deed Ryan. Love the photography but love the idea and the premise of this whole shoot even more.

Christian Lee - Wow…these are rad. I really really really love the 1st one.

Dustin Hall - What a sweet couple, who doesn’t love seeing the guy getting lifted? The one on the bottom left is my favourite, I love how you light.

Steven Markow - Thank you so much Ryan. These are unreal. We are so happy.

Craig Cacchioli - Great moments. Had to laugh at the shot of Steven being lifted by Julianne!

sachin khona - flippin crazy good portraits Ryan. Locations amazing, couple amazing, images amazing ..

WIN!

Julianne Markow - I’m just looking through these again for the billionth time and I’m still ecstatic. Thank you!

Jessica - Hearing you essentially say the same thing at the Fort Worth workshop earlier this year really made the biggest light bulb go off in my head. It has completely changed the way I shoot weddings.

Joel C Adelaide - What a beautiful couple. Great photos and moments.

Paul Rowland - So much awesomeness in this. Love every single image. The one sitting in front of the painting as a tribute to a past image is too good.

Zoe Barrie - ooooh – what utterly gorgeous images Julianne & Steven – wow wow wow – you are SO talented Ryan! LOVING these – congrats guys <3.

Sarah der - Um, seriously. This is my third time looking at these and MAN JULIANNE IS SO FLIPPING PRETTY IT IS SORT OF OUTRAGEOUS. I love every single one; I refuse to choose a favorite.

Lindsay Taryn - i looooooove the reflection shot so much. these are all so stunning, ryan!

Anton Chia - Julianne you are so pretty and you got a good looking guy too. Must be amazing to be shot by our favorite Ryan Brenizer!

mike - Boss use of light.

Miles - Well, the couple looks amazing! They’re a great inspiration for other couples to be motivated in keeping themselves look and feel beautiful everyday. Maybe an annual photoshoot is a good factor, too. :)