With the light of a candle from the altar of the Church of S. Pedro de Penaferrim in front of them, the bride and groom smile as they listen to the priest, seen by the wedding photographer in Sintra, Portugal.

The Wedding Photographer’s First Time

YES…I DON’T REMEMBER by THE SINTRA WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

With the light of a candle from the altar of the Church of S. Pedro de Penaferrim in front of them, the bride and groom smile as they listen to the priest, seen by the wedding photographer in Sintra, Portugal.

That little church. I have a special love for that little church. The wedding photographer was in the starting days of chasing photos of weddings, when, for the first time, he entered, with photographic cameras in his hands, very nervous, this beautiful little church in S. Pedro de Sintra, called S. Pedro de Penaferrim. It was a name that ever more left my affective memories, from places and important spots of my life. I remember so well when I entered inside, it was my very first church that offered me photographs of a wedding. I was completely out of my mind, about what I am doing here, how I will do what I need to do here, what I am allowed to do, and what I can not even think about doing here. Where I can walk and where I am irrevocably forbidden. What an affliction. In addition to my freshness as a wedding photographer, why this place, this church that I know since my first steps when Sintra come into my life, so many years before, on the way for camping, during the school holidays, near Monserrate.

   But, I was lucky. Because I arrived a bit early to do some precious study of the inside of the church and find the spots for the best points of view, I saw an old gentleman, with kind eyes and with more energy than me. You are the priest for the ceremony? I ask in fear. Yes, I am, I see that you are the man of the photographs. Yes, I am, I answered with not so much conviction in my voice and afraid for what could come next, because the stories between wedding photographers and priests, for the wedding ceremony celebration, sometimes are not quite gentle. Well, can you tell me, please, if you have some restrictions on my work? Do you know how to celebrate the mass and perform weddings? No, never was my task. So, let me do what I know to do and you, do the same and be very happy with that.

    You can understand the relief of the wedding photographer. As soon as the bride begins to take her first steps at the entrance of the church and arms with her father, she advances through the aisle on the way to the altar, where her enchanted prince waits for her. I only remember to be photographing, next, outside the church where everyone celebrates, and congratulates the newlyweds and the next part of the wedding day is starting to be, where is about to eat, drink and feast a lot. What happened inside that church, how it happened, from where I did the photos, or if I abused the patience of the kind priest that, in the end, wished me a very good end of the working day, everything vanished from my memory, until today. I remember very well all the details of the before and the after but, sincerely, I do not have a single clue of what I have done inside that church. But it was done because I saw it in my photos. It was not bad, because, after that, the wedding photographer has been back there many times and, I am sure many more will come. I could not have a better place for my wedding photographer’s baptism…in church.

NOTE: It was not with the photos of the wedding of Maria and Duarte. It was a wedding for a colleague of mine, some years before, and I do not have the photos with me, in my archive.  But it will remain forever in my memory…what remained.

The bride walks arm in arm with her father to the entrance of the S. Pedro de Penaferrim Church, followed by the wedding photographer.

The moment the bride arrives next to the groom at the altar of S. Pedro de Penaferrim Church for the wedding ceremony.

General view of S. Pedro de Penaferrim Church in Sintra, with the bride and groom for the wedding ceremony and their guests.

Looking at the groom, in the presence of the priest of S. Pedro de Penaferrim Church in Sintra, the bride places the ring on the groom's finger.

The bride and groom leave the door of the Church of S. Pedro de Penaferrim after the wedding ceremony under a mantle of petals of many flowers.

The groom among the guests congratulating him for the wedding, in a composition of the wedding photographer in Sintra.

The bride, smiling with happiness, hugs a female wedding guest that congratulates her, seen by the wedding photographer in Sintra.

The groom's mother, after the end of the ceremony, makes a tender caress on his face, seen by the wedding photographer in Sintra.

The bride smiles to the guests around her as the wedding ceremony at the Church of S. Pedro de Penaferrim in Sintra is over.

The groom, amidst other guests, in conversation with a lady congratulating him on the wedding, by the wedding photographer in Sintra.

The bride embracing a wedding guest , as soon as the wedding ceremony in S. Pedro de Penaferrim Church in Sintra ends.

The Church of S. Pedro de Penaferrim with wedding guests surrounding the bride and groom to congratulate them on their wedding, in a view by the wedding photographer in Sintra.

Wedding photos at S. Pedro de Penaferrim‘s church in Sintra.

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