featuring a bridal portraiture by Aralani Photography.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Ara Roselani of Aralani Photography a Pacific Northwest photographer who does much more than take pictures, she captivates with stories. Important stories. Stories that encompass nature’s incredible beauty. Stories that encompass love, life and passion. And, when she combines the two, it is a vision of spectral elegance – a bridal portrait. This non trash the dress photography concept is the stuff fairy tales are made of. Beautiful. Exquisite. Artful. Here in this interview, Ara explains the vision behind every bridal portrait story.
What part is “fairy tale” in this type of photography session?
I, along with many brides I work with, grew up wanting to be princesses. With this type of photography, we have a fantastic opportunity to make our own fairytale. We buy these exquisite and expensive dresses, and I love being able to use the dress for more than the ceremony and reception. Why not be a hiker, a runner, a mountain climber, a princess, a fairy, or just a beautiful girl in nature, wearing these beautiful gowns? Why not take complete control of how you want to remember not just your wedding, but the process of getting married and all the beauty that goes with it?
We write our own stories through pictures.
Bride Celeste- exploring the Columbia River Gorge in her wedding dress.
Is this type of photography still a trend?
In my experience, it’s transforming—not always about taking a bucket of paint or a pair of scissors to the dress, but creating images of a bride in her dress that truly capture her personality and tell a story. It is also one of my most-requested services. Brides and photographers have a wonderful opportunity to create something truly unique to the bride–something she can carry forward as a representation of herself, not just as a bride, but as a unique and gorgeous woman. This is timeless, not trendy.
Do you approach brides with this idea or do they come to you after seeing your work?
Both. I always offer sessions like this when I sit down with clients, but quite often, I am approached to shoot a wedding because of these portraits. It shows my love of stories and creating visual imagery as art, not just wedding photography.
Has a bride ever regretted her decision to wear her dress and be photographed like this?
So far, I have only truly trashed one dress (with no regrets). All the others have been dry cleaned and boxed as normal. There are certain fabrics that can handle being soaked and dragged, and if silk is involved, we can stay away from getting it wet.
Are grooms invited to this type of session?
Grooms are always welcome! In June, I will be spending a full day in Zion National Park shooting post-wedding and trash-the-dress portraits with both the bride and groom. The brides who do it by themselves usually have a very specific, personal vision—or a feeling they wish to capture in the image.
Do you have a favorite session? Why?
My favorite session is what I’m shooting right now, and what I’ll shoot tomorrow. It’s really the challenge of creating images that do justice to the scene or people that drives me to be the best I can every day, and to grow and become even better at what I do. I have the opportunity to change lives, create memories, invoke emotion, and make people feel really good about themselves every time I pick up a camera. When I succeed, every one of those sessions is my favorite.
If you could shoot anywhere in the world- what and where would you most like to photograph for a bridal portrait?
I love epic landscapes, and often daydream about photographing couples, brides and people in general in my favorite national parks, in the Himalayas backed by towering mountain-scapes, in green rivers and under waterfalls. My love of landscape photography has been at least matched by the love of having people in these photos as well—after all, as beautiful as landscapes are, people and their stories are just as unique and breathtaking.
Ara- thanks so much for sharing your vision and your art with us! What a pleasure! I am your newest fan! To see all the images from Celeste’s bridal portrait session in the Columbia Gorge, head over to Ara’s blog. Exquisite and captivating on so many levels… and with true fairytale appeal.