Weddings are really important

Everyone is beautiful. Somewhere deep within you, there is a fire of light and joy. Not everyone’s light shines in the same way or with the same strength or even all the time—stuff changes. People are different, but deep down, everyone is connected to the little bit of themselves that is truly theirs.

In a time when the phrase “storyteller” is thrown around everywhere, I believe it’s vital to remember that your wedding isn’t my story to tell. I’m not here to document your day with my narrative but to capture all your little elements and give them back to you so you can tell your own stories forever.

There is no place for my ego on a wedding day. I am here to support your vision, guide you toward what you’ve dreamed of, and give you space to live into the day. 

Whenever I meet new couples, I’m looking to make my new best friends. I want to know who you are, how you came together, why you love what you love, and your favorite ice cream. With that level of relationship we are going to be so much more comfortable together and you as a couple will be even more comfortable in front of the lens. As we get to know each other better, we’ll all forget that the camera is there and your “you-ness” will really shine through.

Joyful people bring me to tears. That isn’t a figure of speech, I have been known to get misty-eyed during wedding dance parties because it’s just so full of pure joy. I seek out that unbridled joy everywhere I go.

I’m also all about being adventurous. That could mean we’re going to go climb a mountain or it might mean we’re going to try the really spicy chai tea. By experiencing life in the process of making photos, you’re going to be even more connected to the images because they will have stories that go along with them.

Together we’ll make you shine.

– Joe

Black and white portrait of man in suit

Joe Tobiason, Washington State elopement and wedding photographer, based in Seattle

As a kid, I always wanted a camera in my hand. For the sake of saving rolls of film (and money), my parents kept that to a minimum. When I moved to Peru, it seemed only natural to get my own camera and start paying for my own rolls. In that year of photographing the streets and communities around Lima and the Andes, I came to love this little machine that stops time. I was enthralled with the way that a moment revealed a lifetime or how a long exposure could reveal the mysteries of the stars that the naked eye could never see.

When I moved back to the PNW, my camera was never far away and I started my work as a Seattle wedding photographer on the side. In 2014, I moved on from my day job and started making photos full-time. Since then, I have photographed hundreds of weddings and elopements, driven up and down the west coast and been lucky enough to take sunset strolls with so many couples.

My wedding photography has been featured on blogs like Rangefinder, Junebug, Wedding Wire and Bridal Musings. In the NGO world, I have worked with organizations such as Heifer International, the Grameen Foundation, the World Affairs Council, the Presbyterian Church (USA), the Young Adult Volunteers, Splash, Pencils of Promise, New Horizons, College Access Now and many more.

If for some reason I don’t have a camera in my hand, I can be found losing my voice at a Sounders match, climbing mountains, bumming around in my VW Vanagon, running, or chasing my kids.