It is difficult to write about that or those who are close to you. If this blog were on paper you would see dozens of lines scratched out as I searched for the perfect opening lines; I'm proceeding without them.
Mischa is a poet. It's ok if you haven't read his poems yet (though you should certainly remedy that as your future children will be quoting them). Amber is a dancer who's movements are imbued with a grace which is unfortunately rarely found in our species. One could be content just watching her make tea, but what a loss it would be not watch her dance on stage.
Some of the best times of my life have been spent conversing with Mischa over a bottle of wine in some far-flung corner of the world. We've laughed, argued, explored, and frequently plotted the takeover of the world. (It's coming). Among our agreements was that when he chose someone to marry I would be his wedding photographer (and by agreement, I mean his repeated proclamation of that fact). I was doubly shocked when he asked me to be his best man. First, because I thought my role as wedding photographer had been clearly pre-established, and second because one gets the distinct impression that Mischa has a half-dozen or so people who are his best men (which is, in fact, the case). He then clarified that I would need to be best man AND photographer. If I didn't have Nancy as a partner, this would have been rather difficult, but with her it was great fun. I've never done this sort of thing before, and don't know if I ever will again.
As almost all of their friends and family would be travling from accross the country, Amber and Mischa sought to make their wedding a glimpse into their daily life, and home in Seattle. The three-day affair began with an open-to-the-public dance performance by Amber and some of her colleagues and a poetry reading by Mischa and some of his friends. [The first few photos below are from this]. The next day it was followed by a BBQ in their park, and later that evening, dinner at one of the most authentic Italian restaurants this side of the pond.
The following day, I walked down the aisle with a camera in one hand and the matron of honor in the other (again a first for me). I had debated at some length whether or not to do this, and decided that I should make a few very select images while on stage. In part because it epitomized my dual roles, but also because I would be giving them images from a perspective that few people have. After the recessional, Mischa felt it most appropriate to ride off on a bike (their principal form of transportation in Seattle). Undaunted by the obvious complications of riding with his bride in her wedding gown, Mischa secured, what might be the only bycicle in Seattle that could overcome this challenge, and they rode off. Given that they met at a coffeeshop and Amber used to work at one, it was fitting that they rented one out for their reception venue. There they ate, toasted, drank, and occasionally broke out into spontaneous dance.
I probably don't have room here to explain why this was so perfect for them, but they made a grand exit from their reception in an authentic British taxi-cab. Short of something like riding off in Percy Shelley's carriage, I cannot imagine a more perfect departure for them.
Writing this, I've realized that the crux of what I'm always trying to say in these texts is, "oh, I just wish you could meet this couple, and know these things about them that I do." Only now do I also realize that in their own imperfect and incomplete ways, our photographs allow us to do that.