Photo of Jared Platt

Heidi & Michael’s Wedding at the Grand Canyon, Shoshone Point

July 31st, 2012 — 9:42am

Heidi and Michael were married in the Grand Canyon on Shoshone Point.  It was a very small wedding.  Heidi and her son and Michael and his father and the officiant and myself.  That’s it!  I love a super small wedding in a beautiful place away from the city.  Don’t get me wrong, a big, orchestrated wedding is great, but small is just as good.

It was a fantastic day.  I enjoyed being there, as always.  We had great weather and got some great shots.  Here are a few of my favorite images from the wedding.

For those who have not walked out onto Shoshone Point, I have included this photo to give you a bit of perspective for the rest of the images. The wedding happened out on the tip of this point, just past the monolithic stone.  It is a bit of a drop.  Shoshone Point, is the spot from which to view the Grand Canyon.  It is the canyon, the way it was found!  No guard rails, no hotels, just rock and sky.

The bride, Heidi, and her son, the ring bearer, walked together down the path that runs down the crest of the point to meet Michael, who was waiting at the edge of the cliff, where Heidi and Michael would be married.  You can see Michael in this shot between the trees past and to the right of the monolithic rock at the end of the path.

As Heidi and Michael began the ceremony, Heidi’s son stood back a way and watched the moment.  I hope that his photo makes it into his scrap book for him to remember the day.  I think it tells the story quite well.

He also tried his hand, during the ceremony at being a photographer.  I imagine he has some great shots in his head of the wedding.

Toward the end of the short ceremony, they performed a sand ceremony with various sands from various places, one was sand from the beach and one was earth from the canyon itself.  I forget where exactly the other soil came from, but the three made for a nice mixture of soils in the heart shaped glass vase.

I don’t often include photos of me in a post, but this was an interesting shoot.  As I was all alone on this wedding, with no assistant, I needed additional angles, so I put a wide shot on a tripod and attached a Pocket Wizard (radio trigger) to the camera and attached its corresponding radio transmitter to my flash hot shoe on my main camera.  Whenever I wanted a shot from my wide camera, I simply turned on the transmitter on my camera and took a shot.  The wide camera on the tripod then fired a shot at the same time I tripped the shutter on my main camera.  I was glad to have the extra angle on the wedding.  It’s a very good method for collecting more angles.

Oh, and if you’re wondering, yes, that is a camera hanging off my belt.  I use a Spider Holster to hang my second camera off my belt, it saves my back and makes maneuvering at a wedding much easier.  I ca’t do a wedding without the Spider Holster.

I love this shot.  Michael looks like he is just lightly hopping around up there.  To me, it feels the same as a shot of one of those fearless steel workers building the Empire State building.

Heidi and Michael didn’t just come to the Grand Canyon and get married.  They hiked from the North rim to the South rim over a period of three days and got married the same day!  The reached the top of the South rim around 1 PM and were married at approximately 6:30 PM.  That’s what I call an extreme wedding.

The sunset was wonderful that day.

The bridal bouquet was beautifully done.  More important though, was the handkerchief, which was a significant heirloom.

This was a great idea!  Since there was no one to throw the bouquet to, the bride threw her bouquet into the canyon, and the groom and the ring bearer threw their corsages.  It was interesting then to learn (later, when I spoke with a park ranger) that the native americans used to use Shoshone Point as a burial grounds to throw their loved one’s ashes into the wind.

I love the embrace between the bride and groom here with the canyon so full of light and shadow in the background.  This is one of my favorite portraits from the day.

After the ceremony and the portraits, I ran ahead to get a few shots of Heidi and Michael leaving the point.  I think this is one of those epic wedding shots that few people have because few people are married in a place that is so magnificent.

One last photo from the point of the actual sunset over the Grand Canyon.  I think as I shoot more and more at the canyon, I am beginning to understand it a little more and anticipate it’s moments.  It is a tricky and illusive subject to photograph.  It is not easy to capture its moments.  They are no different than the fleeting expressions on a child’s face, or the lightning fast collisions in a football game.  And as you spend more time around studying the subject, you learn to anticipate.  For so many years (in my youth), the canyon alluded me.  And while I can’t say I connect with it as well as some of the great landscape photographers both present and past, I am glad to say, I have gotten to know this wonder a little better over the past few years.  But I have come to know the canyon as a cathedral, a church, not as a canyon, or a scientific wonder.  I am sure that has some effect on the way I photograph it.

The bride’s son left this little note for his mother on a rock on the point.

Thank you, Heidi and Michael, for trusting me with your wedding.  It was a pleasure to be there, as you begin a new chapter in your lives.  I hope you love the images as much as I do…

Wedding Photography by Jared Platt, Platt Photography

Slideshow music by Daniel Ho, courtesy of Triple Scoop Music

Wedding Location: Shoshone Point at the Grand Canyon, Arizona

Category: Landscape, Photography, Weddings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

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