My connection to photography began at age 10 when my parents brought back a beautiful Voigtlander Vitomatic III camera from Germany. This little silver box was magic to me. Upon receiving my first roll of film back from the lab, I was instantly addicted to the alchemy of light coming through glass, hitting plastic film and becoming an image through a specific stew of chemistry. A few years later, I began printing in the darkroom when I was the photographer for my high school newspaper and yearbook. I studied the photography of the Magnum Agency masters like Henri Cartier-Bresson and Elliott Erwitt, but it was Ralph Gibson that immediately electrified my imagination about the compositional and emotional energy of black and white imagery. I started photograping head shots for model portfolios and for promotional portraits and cover images for musicians, then shooting for the Seattle weekly papers, shooting everything from city council meetings and mayoral press conferences to restaurant reviews and local human interest stories. It was through these experiences that I realized I love photographing people.
I landed my first wedding in Seattle in 1999 somewhat by accident. After a couple loved the portraits I made for them, they asked if I would shoot their wedding. I said yes, but was secretly terrified. Fortunately, my naivety was inadvertently a bonus because I photographed that wedding the same way I photographed news stories: as discreetly as possible and recognizing key moments at the speed they are happening rather than directing the action or creating artificial scenarios. I don't have the preconceived notions of an advertising photographer. I prefer to work spontaneously. It's like a bell goes off in my mind when I see everything fall into place in the frame and the shutter is pressed at that instant of harmony. I am always looking and waiting for the next bell. Weddings are extremely personal events, and my travels have given me the experience with nearly every possible setting and lighting condition imaginable. Despite being 6'2", the ability to blend in to any situation and disappear into the background is what allows me to make the images that resonate most with me and my clients. I learned early on that showcasing a portfolio of images that speak to me will attract the kind of clients who share the same visual aesthetic. This accidental wisdom has served me well and I am always excited to work with couples who love photography. Every wedding is unique and while I never know exactly what to expect my goal is the same: to push myself to see the world in new ways and to create timeless images that both me and my clients will love, now and decades in the future. I am just as excited to see the final images as you are!
Since 1999, I have been a professional photographer serving in Minneapolis, MN, Seattle, WA and international destinations. While weddings are my first love, I also apply my style to portraits, promotional images, live music, commercial and editorial work for a number of clients and publications.
I regularly travel for weddings, and have been commissioned to photograph weddings all over the world. Recent travel weddings include: Bali-Indonesia, Hong Kong-China, Udaipur-India, Bangkok-Thailand, Seoul-Korea, Zihuatanejo-Mexico, Honolulu-Hawaii, Washington DC, Anchorage-AK, Vancouver-BC, Portland-OR, Sun River-OR, Seattle-WA, Tacoma-WA, Orcas Island-WA, Spokane-WA, Sioux Falls-SD, Spillville-IA, La Crosse-WI, Minneapolis-MN, St. Paul-MN, Duluth-MN, Chicago-IL, New York-NY, Burlington-VT, Atlanta-GA, Phoenix-AZ, Napa-CA, Sonoma-CA, Fremont-CA, Palm Springs-CA, Palo Alto-CA, Berkeley-CA, Carmel-CA, Los Angeles-CA, San Diego-CA, Sausalito-CA and San Francisco-CA.
Over the past 18 years, I have photographed over 600 weddings, from as few as 6 guests in Seattle to 600 in Seoul.
My work has been featured in ad campaigns for Amazon.com and Sony Ericsson mobile phones, album cover art for musicians: Pete Droge, Downpilot, Fauna, February, Kim Field and The Mighty Titans of Tone, Rachel Harrington, Sugartown, Brother Sun Sister Moon, Visqueen, Truckstop Souvenir, Declining Winter, Memory Drawings, and Broadcast Oblivion. My images and quotes have been printed in local and national magazines, including Rolling Stone (Germany), Fuji Love Magazine, Fuji X Passion Magazine, Olympus Passion Magazine, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Seattle Times, Seattle Sound, Seattle Weekly, The Stranger, Photo District News (PDN), MSNBC.com, ROCKRGRL, The Big Takeover, Three Imaginary Girls, Washington Free Press, Local Planet, Seattle Police Annual Report, Seattle Police Foundation Calendar, Women's Health Magazine, Martha Stewart Weddings, Grace Ormonde Wedding Style, Seattle Bride, Seattle Metropolitan Bride & Groom, The Knot, Conde Nast's Brides Magazine, Wedding Pages Magazine, Wedding Expo, Herban Feast's wedding brochure and Banquet & Event's promotional literature and billboards. My images have been used in websites for the Seattle Police, Daniel Boen Law Office, Bel Canto audiophile stereo equipment and Jai Healing chiropractic office.
I have been interviewed in Martha Stewart Weddings, Seattle Bride, Minnesota Bride, Junebug Weddings, Mpls/St. Paul Magazine, InMyBag.net, ShutterStock, X100C, Photo Business XPosed, Fuji MIrrorlessPro, Fuji X Passion Magazine, Olympus Passion Magazine and MirrorLessons.
Accolades and awards: 2015, 2016 and 2017 Wedding Wire Couple's Choice winner, 4 winning images in PDN's Top Knots wedding photography contest (2004, 2005 and 2016), Grace Ormond Platinum List, The Knot's Best of Weddings winner 2007 and 2008, quoted in Martha Stewart Weddings in 2010, member of Junebug Weddings, member of The Grey Collective, member of Fearless Photographers, member of X100.com Collective, member of This Is Reportage, long time member of WPJA.
Photo of Bradley by Jackie Hanson