As 2021 comes to a close, we’d like to start our end-of-year review with what is really most important. We’ll talk below about our “Best of 2021 Wedding Photos.” But first, we want to thank all of the lovely couples who have entrusted us with documenting their most precious memories this year. We cannot tell you how much your trust means to us or how seriously we take the sacred duty of preserving your wedding moments forever. Especially this year, when the COVID-19 pandemic reminds us over and over how quickly everything can change. So to all the newlyweds whose weddings and engagements we photographed in 2021, thank you from the bottoms of our hearts. We hope that our photos have done justice to the beauty of your love and that they have helped you in some small way to tell the world your love story.
And to all of our couples who will marry in 2022, we want to tell you how excited we are to be a part of your celebrations. We can’t wait to get to know you better, to meet your families and to share your joy. Most importantly, we are more than ready to give you images that will remind you of your wedding day forever! Whatever happens with the pandemic in 2022, please know that we will be there by your side, documenting your most precious moments.
2021: Love Finds a Way
If 2020 taught us that love cannot be canceled, 2021 taught us that love finds a way to express itself. Though this past year has been somewhat easier that the one that preceded it, the ongoing pandemic has still complicated wedding planning. Yes, COVID-related restrictions in the DC metro area have eased considerably. And yes, weddings in 2021 were more possible than they were in 2020. But that didn’t mean they were easy to pull off. Couples had to make adjustments, often keep guest lists smaller and above all, live with uncertainty. Those who married in 2021 frequently dealt with pressure to move quickly. Though more became possible this year, there was a sense that it could all disappear if the virus reared its ugly head again.
Weddings Came in All Shapes and Sizes…
And time after time, we witnessed couples rise to meet these challenges. They found ways to celebrate their love no matter what the circumstances. Smaller guest lists? No problem! We’ll just invite the people who mean the most to us. No dance floor during the reception? We’ll have fun playing special wedding games! Masks during parts of the celebrations? Let’s make personalized ones with our names and wedding dates on them!
We also saw couple after couple find the positives in the possibility that the window could close at any time. One lesson we learned from 2020 is that nothing is a given. There are many things that are outside of our control, and we just have to accept that. Our 2021 couples seem to have learned the same thing. Instead of buckling under the pressure to do everything immediately, they embraced the opportunity that presented itself. Many had originally planned to wed in 2020 and had to postpone to 2021. After dealing with that stress and disappointment, they were obviously both relieved that they could finally start their married life this year. More importantly, though, there was a sense of gratitude for the chance to do something that once seemed almost impossible. So what if everything wasn’t perfect? The only thing that mattered was that they married, and that happened.
The couples who planned their weddings in 2021 had a similar sense of perspective. Many of them decided to marry this year and then made it happen as quickly as possible. This often meant a very short planning process. One couple went from getting engaged to exchanging vows in less than a month! Were those couples able to do everything on their dream wedding list? Of course not. Did they cut a few corners and neglect a couple of details? Sure. Did it matter in the end? Not a bit. Were they disappointed by their marriage celebrations in the end? Not at all.
…But the Wedding Photos Were as Beautiful as Ever!
Couples who married in 2021 were no less happy with the photos that documented their weddings. Why? Because just like the celebrations themselves, the images still had what was most important. The elements that make an image the sort you will never forget are not the grandest venue in the background, nor the largest crowd filling the frame, nor the most exquisite decorations. No, the people are what makes a wedding photo unforgettable. And more importantly, the ways they interact with others and the emotions that the picture captures.
Yes, weddings were often simpler in 2021 than in years past. But as we mentioned before, the way couples felt as they married was no different. The love they felt for each other burned no less brightly. The support they had from family and friends was no less valuable to them. And the moments they shared with one another and with their guests were no less meaningful. So the photos we took for them were just as beautiful as any we’ve taken in any other year.
Potok’s World Photography’s Best of 2021 Wedding Photos
As we look back at the pictures we took this year, we realize that they are perhaps even better than what we’ve done in the past. We are always working to improve our craft so that we can better serve our couples. And we would like to think that those efforts have really paid off this year. So our “Best of 2021 Wedding Photos” aren’t just the best shots we’ve taken this year; they are among the best we’ve ever taken.
So without further ado, here is a collection of our best work from the past year. The images we’ve selected come from a very diverse set of weddings and engagement sessions. There are pictures of big celebrations and intimate affairs. The pictures capture events in the heart of DC and in rural locales in Northern Virginia and Maryland. They show the beautiful cultural diversity of the Nation’s Capital, and in several cases, the ways those different cultures come together to form something new. The images preserve touching moments, romantic moments, funny moments, celebratory moments and even quiet moments the couple might not have even been aware of. But most importantly, those photos show love.
We hope you enjoy looking at these images as much as we enjoyed taking them. We wish you all a happy and safe 2022!
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