It’s not every day you meet a photographer who is also a scientist… let alone two… but that’s the story of Alex and Ariel of Ariel Kaitlin Photography. The dating photography duo exercise the logical side of their brain during the week and the creative side on the weekends. Ariel, one half of the team and the namesake behind the brand, plays with viruses all day (a.k.a. she’s a lab tech who works on Influenza, although she’s also dabbled in Zika, Denuge fever and the West Nile virus) at Duke University.
As a science-based, secular couple, Ariel and Alex were surprised how traditional gender roles influence the wedding industry and how vendors interact with their clients. The duo wanted to do things a little differently:
“We highly believe in equality and view marriage as two people openly entering into a union and committing to each other,” said Ariel. “It’s surprising how often the wedding is considered the ‘bride’s day,’ and males are overlooked because there’s this ideal that men just don’t care as much about the wedding. We break that mold by treating both partners in a relationship as equals and always refer to the wedding as their day together. We give attention to both partners throughout our posing, giving them both the chance to shine as individuals. We are LGBTQ+ friendly because we strongly believe love is love and it deeply saddens us that this is not always a normal practice in the industry.”
For the photographer who loves rock climbing in her (very limited!) free time, wedding day is all about the couple. And that approach is why their couples hire them. Couples immediately see how much Ariel and Alex care about them and their love story.
“We aren’t focused on making sure our Instagram feed is pretty,” says the momma of Goober, a Corgi-Pitbull mix. “Instead we want to be able to show our couples who we are as real people every now and again, so they feel more comfortable working with us. Besides, who doesn’t love a picture of an adorable puppy on their feed?!”
While they still consider themselves light photographers, their style has morphed a bit to add more contrast and an extra pop to the images that gives their end product a light, bright, romantic yet classic feeling. And while they can work anywhere, they describe that they thrive in outdoor settings with natural light.
“I really thrive in the couple’s session,” said Ariel. “I practice the most with couples – posing during engagement shoots, learning how they look together and determining the best poses together. I have this dream when I get married of epic portraits blown up on my wall. I want to make sure all of my clients have that so they can smile and remember that special day every time they see it.”
As much as she loves photographing people, shooting the details is another favorite element of her job because she “loves pretty things.” That time gives her a chance to be a little more creative and relax in the “calm before the storm.”
But nothing makes Ariel happier than making her couples happy and knowing she delivered exactly what they wanted on their wedding day. “It’s so rewarding to hear our couples say, ‘This is perfect; it’s exactly what we wanted.’ I know I was able to provide them with the peace of mind, memories and photos that they will cherish forever.”
Looking for a wedding photographer to give you peace of mind that your photos will be exactly what you want? Click here to meet Ariel – and yes, she travels (any one up for a European adventure?!)!