Opening and closing photos by Lorely Meza for Studio EMP | www.studioemp.com

Other photos by Joel Maus  for Studio EMP | www.studioemp.com

The Junk Bonanza San Diego is pleased to welcome Weddings Lab photographer Joel Maus of Studio EMP, which he founded and owns!

Joel is part of a Weddings Lab dynamic duo; he is married to Jenni Maus of Found Vintage Rentals, the Lab’s co-curator!

1. What is the image you like to shoot that couples usually don’t think to request?

For the most part, my goal is capture real moments and those cannot be scripted, requested, or planned but the images I love to make as special gifts to my clients because they aren’t expecting them are aplenty:
* bride’s hands fidgeting before the ceremony
* nice, tight portraits of their grandparents and others (they may not learn the importance until much later when the subject is no longer with us, but they are treasured at that point)
* groom looking at the bride when he didn’t realize I was shooting
* bride mid-laugh during the best day of her life looking radiant
* parents looking at their son or daughter when they don’t realize I’m shooting
* I love shooting the couple when they are moving — walking or similar — with fabric and hair flowing in the air while they are enjoying one another.
* so many other moments that I can’t plan for but just happen.
2. How many weddings have you photographed?
Around 750 weddings and more than a million images in my 15 years.
3. What is your favorite setting for a shot of the happy couple?
I love nature or textured walls/old buildings a lot because they fit nicely with my relaxed style. But what really makes a setting amazing is amazing light. I find the best light first, then find the best background/setting in that light.
4. Three words that describe your work?
relaxed real, natural
5. Most unusual wedding ever?
The most unusual wedding (to me)…. it’s got to be the wedding I shot in Italy. Bride and groom are both Italian and the wedding was in their town. Not many people spoke English at all and I knew only a smidge of Italian along with a little Spanish. It was unusual to me not only because of the language barrier (I became known as the Photo Mime because I relied heavily on hand/body gestures to get through the day successfully) but because of the different culture. They didn’t care about impressing their guests. To them it was just a day to celebrate and to enjoy family and close friends. I LOVED it.
Joel, thanks for sharing your photographic insights! We look forward to publishing more of your great work in future posts!
You may see Joel documenting the Weddings Lab while you’re in the house! Just one more day until Junk Bonanza starts!


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