My Why

Today I wanted to share with you some personal thoughts on how I started and became a wedding photographer. That is my WHY. For all of you who need some inspiration or don't really know me, maybe thinking to yourself "she takes nice photos, that girl, whatever her name is" :D There is a story behind every business, and there is a person behind every story.

Grab a cup of tea.

I became interested in wedding photography when one of my best friends got engaged in 2014.

Before that, I was always the one, who takes pictures. Events, conferences, family meet ups. When I was 9 my younger brother got a film camera but had no interest in using it, so I quickly took over. Anyone who ever had a pleasure to work with late 90's film camera knows, that it's made of cheap plastic and has nothing of the style and feel of some classic, old film cameras. After taking the whole roll of film I opened the back of the camera and exposed all shots. I guess I will never have the pleasure of looking at my first artistic attempts.

Fast forward to 2014, after few cameras and many travels I invested in my beloved Nikon D5100 - which is still a great camera! For few years I used to have a travel blog, so that was an essential step towards better travel/ lifestyle photos. About the same time, I received a scholarship at Queens University to finish my master's thesis. I originally planned to stay in Belfast for 4 months, as I wanted to go back and get involved in my best friend's wedding preparation. Once I graduate, I thought, I will spend few months in Central America, photographing and vlogging (yes, I was also on YouTube!!!). 

Looking for wedding inspiration for my friend I remember finding a video of this couple getting married in a small black church in Iceland. The ceremony was intimate, very different from what I've known, simple, relaxed and so real. I remember thinking "oh my god, I want this!" and I didn't even mean the wedding (being single) and Iceland (being broke). What I wanted was this feeling, this absolute heart melt when I was watching, this beauty I couldn't even explain. 

Once I joined Queens I started hanging out with the Photo Society. Trips, new shooting techniques, new ideas, new friends. I extended my scholarship for the whole year and had a big learning curve in my photography style. Following autumn I assisted my first wedding - my best friend's wedding! That was a magical day. Shortly after, I started going out with my current boyfriend, whom I also met at the PhotoSoc! I started posting my work on Facebook fanpage and opened Hello, Sugar's website. I'm still in Belfast, and still in the process of writing my thesis. 

The most important for me now is the purpose. The stories I'm able to tell, the couples I meet, the passion and overwhelming joy in my life when I'm capturing the big day. The beauty, the emotions, the tears. Everything I ever wanted to experience. 

 For the minute, because I'm still a newbie, I'm doing different types of photography - you can see my work at Ross's Auctioneer's fanpage, which I'm an in charge of, or Pronto Deli's. I shoot interior and properties for friends. Formals and dinners at Queens University.  I take bookings for children's & family's photography, which is my second love after weddings. Photography is always my pride and joy, and I try to encourage myself every day and stay positive, hence all the struggles and doubts when starting a new business.

For the future, I'd like to say I'm booking 30-40 weddings a year and I'm able to travel full time to shoot weddings in the Canary Islands, Greece, Mexico & Worldwide. I'm sure saying those things out loud will make me feel more obligated to keep pushing and working hard every day. After all, one of my dreams recently came true -  I visited this little black church in Iceland I dreamed of :)


Paula Puchacz