Students work in wedding industry

Submitted Photo by Julia Hembree
Submitted Photo by Julia Hembree
Wedding Photography
Julia Hembree, senior art major, freelances as a wedding photographer. Here, she photographs Kate and Jeremy Weise as they head toward the courthouse to pick up their wedding certificate. | Submitted Photo by Julia Hembree

This spring, Union students are participating in wedding planning in more ways than one.

While many students are getting engaged and married, other students are shooting the photographs and choosing the dresses at those weddings.

Jenaye White, junior public relations major, is a bridal consultant at Anne’s Bridals in Paducah, Ky.

During breaks from school, White goes back to help brides choose dresses.

While at school, she runs the store’s website and keeps track of inventory.

White has had the opportunity to help a classmate choose a wedding gown.

“It was one of my first times helping a bride, but it was my roommate,” White said. “Pretty quickly, we were able to narrow down what we wanted. It was kind of surreal.”

White said participating in someone’s wedding in this way is one of the best parts of her job.

“It’s really cool to be part of their big day,” White said. “Especially when you know them, it’s rewarding.”

Julia Hembree, senior art major, is a freelance wedding photographer in her spare time.

Hembree said wedding photography gives her more time to get to know the people for whom she works.

“Weddings are a way for us to get to know our clients and get paid for the time that we put into it,” Hembree said. “Photography is one of the most important aspects of a wedding.”

Hembree said choosing a photographer is an important decision in wedding planning because the photos are what the couple looks back on when they are remembering their wedding day.

Hembree said lighting quality should inform location choice in wedding planning.

“Make sure your wedding has good light,” Hembree said. “It can be magical if you have the right lighting.”

For Hembree, photographing weddings is also a way to participate in the lives of friends and family.

“I get misty-eyed behind the glass,” Hembree said. “I cry at every wedding.”

Haaken Magnuson, junior biology major, has also made a small business from his photography.

Magnuson became interested in photography in middle school and since then, his hobby has grown into a way to earn extra cash.

“I never had ambitions of making money off of photography,” Magnuson said.  “I don’t think of it as work. I’m able to get experience and earn money by doing something I love.”

For Magnuson, weddings are a way to get to know his clients even better.

“It’s a big responsibility because they’re inviting you into their wedding day and they want good photos,” Magnuson said. “The better relationship you have with them going into it, the more comfortable they will be and the more smoothly it will go.”

Image courtesy of Cardinal & Cream|Cardinal & Cream