In the 1950 classic film Father of the Bride, George, played by Spenser Tracy, watches his daughter Annie, played by Elizabeth Taylor, take her wedding vows and says to himself, “I realized at that moment that I was never going to come home again and see Annie at the top of the stairs. Never going to see her again at our breakfast table in her nightgown and socks…Annie was all grown up and leaving us, and something inside began to hurt.”

The scene may be fiction, but the emotion behind it is real. Throughout the wedding day, parents and their children walk a delicate line between past and future. Letting go is never easy, but it can make for dramatic photographs full of heart. Through experience and instinct, wedding photojournalists capture tender moments many bridal couples typically don’t see, giving them windows into the hearts of the people they love.

The element of this seeming invisibility on the wedding photographer’s part is key since being unobtrusive is the aim of wedding photojournalism. Therefore, it is important to give the couple and the guests their space when necessary all while being prepared to step up and get the picture.