Two days ago, my little sister was married.
She is my second favorite girl in the world behind my wife. She is strong and brave and crazy and intense and smart and creative and fun and exciting and funny. She was born when I was almost 5 years old, and the thing I remember the most about her birth were the awesome bendy straws and little packs of grape jam my dad brought me from the hospital. We spent a massive amount of time playing together growing up…usually ending up with her crying because of me knocking her over or hurting her or just plain making her angry. Our times playing soccer in the back yard were the things of legend. Despite the brotherly abuse I put her through, I was always very protective of her. Dealing with sisters growing up and the introduction of boys is something that all big brothers have to deal with and learn how to handle. Some times I handled it fairly well…other times, less so. But when I met Jørgen for the first time, I knew he was the one for her. All guys probably feel like they can get a good idea about another guy in the first few minutes, and it did not take me long at all to know that I really liked this guy. I don’t have anything specific I could point to…other than I sensed an air of selflessness and how much he valued her. Whatever it was, even though it was already pretty clear where things were headed, I knew that he would take care of her. We Conners are a rather intense lot of people, and it requires a special…”patience” at times to be with us. Just ask Shannon. I knew he could do that for her. I was very happy. I am pretty sure we all felt the same way.
Their wedding was a short trip from their apartment in Brooklyn, NY. It was in the amazing Prospect Park, and it was a lovely, lovely intimate ceremony that suited them both. Many tears were shed…I don’t know if any of us in the family made it through dry. We had met Jørgen’s parents the night before, and they were such a wonderful couple who we gelled with very quickly. Edmund especially really took to them…it was such fun to watch. Elisabeth did her vows in Jørgen’s native Norwegian, and it was powerful. It was such a wonderful ceremony…there was so much time and energy put into the journey to that day…from their first meeting in Norway, the numerous trips back and forth for both of them from the US to Norway, the many hours and tears spent in the laborious process of acquiring a visa, to the hasty planning once the paperwork came through, and the day itself as it came together perfectly. It was an amazing day.
I was not the actual photographer that day, but Elisabeth had asked if I could do a few things, and I wanted to shoot some for her. It was the very least I could do. She’s worth it a million times over. I definitely was not always the best brother growing up, and there are a lot of things I would redo if I had the chance. I love my sister more than I could ever put into words, and I have lost track of the times I have teared up in the past week thinking of her. I am so happy for she and Jørgen…they are already amazing together, and it will only get better. Joy. Love you both.
A Note on the Photography:
Those of you who follow our work will notice that what you see here varies significantly with what we normally show. Part of what my sister wanted was for me to shoot fuji pack film (basically, like Polaroid), so I did a lot of that. The quality is not perfect, but that is part of the point of it…it is not about being perfect or pristine. While many images like what you see here are not what we normally present, there are many things and styles we love that might not be to the palate of most of the brides in our area. Since we were not the actual wedding photographer, I was able to shoot some without the normal pressures associated with the job. I had also intended to shoot a lot of 35mm film, but that did not end up happening. When it came down to it, there was only so much that I could carry at a time. Turns out the 2 Polaroid cameras and my one Nikon was the extent that I could manage. With all that said, you will possibly not like everything you see here. That’s totally fine. I had fun with it, and I think my sister and Jørgen will like most of them, so that’s all that matters for this.
Special thanks to Jennifer Trahan…who was the official photographer at the wedding. Thanks for indulging me and letting me tag along. Much appreciated!