GLT: We love that you donate 3% of your proceeds to charity. What are some of the unique ways that a conscientious couple planning a wedding can give back as part of their big day?
Michelle: Couples should be very discerning when choosing their vendors and should see it as a unique opportunity to give back to very specific communities. Choosing small businesses is a great first step. Think of it like shopping on Amazon versus supporting a small local business. Couples should consider their own moral agendas and seek out vendors who align with that. It makes the hunt for vendors more exciting and fulfilling!
Seek out vendors who are passionate about employing, giving back to and uplifting underrepresented communities. Weddings can be expensive but it's important for couples to realize that their dollars can actually make a huge impact!
GLT: Your portfolio really demonstrates your keen sense of storytelling. Do you have a personal philosophy about the ideal ratio of “fly-on-the-wall” vs. “semi-posed” photos at a wedding, or is it more of a “to each his own” type of decision?
Michelle: Thank you! In a magical world, I'd do 100% of the photos as a fly on the wall. I think of wedding photographers as "moment hunters," but the reality is that natural moments don't always happen at the best angle in the perfect light. I do a fair amount of gently guided posing to capture all those moments and make them look sparkly and lovely, but I try to be as hands-off as possible.
As a weekday vegan myself, I can't NOT ask: Have you found a holy grail bean burger recipe you can share with us? You know, because we all need fuel when we're busy planning events :)
Michelle: That's awesome that you're a weekday vegan! *high five* Bean burgers can be kind of heart-breaking; I've made my fair share of crumbly messes over the years but these are two that will not disappoint! I love that you can make a big batch and just freeze them for later.
GLT: It sounds like you're quite the world traveler. Any fun trips on the horizon, or places queued up next on your bucket list?
Michelle: Most recently I've been planning a bunch of quick little trips around the U.S. as I'm starting to grow my business outside of Chicago. For leisure travel however, I'm pretty eager to check out southern Chile. I love hiking and there's an incredible national park there, Torres del Paine.
Want to work with Michelle at Spark & Glow Photo? You know you do! Read more HERE!