Bri McDaniel Photography In Atlanta


Reflecting you, not the wedding industry

by Meg Keene, Editor-In-Chief

Bri McDaniel Photography In Atlanta | A Practical Wedding

Most of my personal favorite artists (wedding photographers, regular photographers, musicians, artisans, you name it) have two things in common: they’re trained artists and they have something to say. Like knows like, and there is something that speaks to my soul in the shared (arduous) process of going to art school and having been tortured getting formal training that forced us to think about what we want to say with our work. Also, possibly, there is something that speaks to my therapy bills, but I’ll keep that between me and the art school graduates in the house.

Bri McDaniel Photography In Atlanta | A Practical Wedding

Bri McDaniel is one of those kinds of artists. A wedding photographer out of Atlanta, she studied photography at the Savannah College of Art and Design (which, for the uninitiated, is a huge deal), and man does she have a message. But first, an introduction to Bri McDaniel Photography.

There are a few things that I truly adore in life: my three cats, Texas Pete Hot Sauce, my boyfriend (editor’s note: now fiancé!), and APW. I love this site and its readers so much because I see real couples. I see me (I’m a short girl with a fro). I see my relationship (I’m black and he’s white). I see real couples and real weddings that I am truly inspired by. I read amazing advice to things I wouldn’t have even considered, like proposing to your boyfriend. And it is all so refreshing. I feel like I am understood and right at home here. I want to work with APW couples because I totally get you. I feel like I already know you. And when we meet, I know we will have an instant connection.

Bri McDaniel Photography In Atlanta | A Practical Wedding

Rad, right? Bri’s your girl. But there is way more to Bri McDaniel Photography than a lovable person you want to have around, amazing photos, and brilliant rates (wedding packages start at $2,500). Bri has something to say about race and representation in the wedding industry. As someone who’s been working in this market for six years, I can say for sure that this is a conversation we need to be having. Often. Loudly. Here is a start from Bri McDaniel:

I see the Atlanta wedding market really divided by race. The African American bride and wedding is represented in one way: over the top, glamorous, and traditional. Not every couple of color is like this, and it is important to me to represent the couples who are different in a way that is different. I just got engaged, so of course right now I am glued to wedding blogs for inspiration. It is disheartening to not really see myself represented. I’m not traditional nor am I looking to throw a big show. So it’s somewhat of a mission of mine to represent every type of couple, and really capture their love stories in a unique way.

Bri McDaniel Photography In Atlanta | A Practical WeddingBri McDaniel Photography In Atlanta | A Practical Wedding

Because it’s about race, but it’s not just about race. As long as we allow ourselves and others to be pigeonholed, we’re not really giving ourselves a chance to understand each other. And as long as we fail to question why the wedding industry is so lily white, we’re complicit in the problem. (And I hold APW to this same standard. We’re continuously struggling with not being able to offer as diverse a representation of weddings as I’d hope for in my least ambitious dreams.)

Bri McDaniel Photography In Atlanta | A Practical Wedding

No surprise, Bri is up to some really interesting work when she’s not shooting weddings, too.

I’m working on a book that will feature images and love stories of interracial couples. When I was in school I started documenting my relationship. The images turned out to be very intimate and showed who we were as a couple in everyday life. They also opened up a lot of questions that I wanted to explore. This has turned into a long-term project for me, and I’m very excited to branch out. I will be traveling to a few cities this year to meet up with interracial couples. I will spend the day with them, documenting their everyday life, and I will tell their stories. I’m always looking for new couples to be a part of the project.

Bri McDaniel Photography In Atlanta | A Practical Wedding

The fact that Bri has something to say is, in my mind, directly tied to her skill as a storyteller and image-maker. She says:

I like to think of myself as a romantic storyteller. I will document a couple’s day as it naturally unfolds with as little interference as possible, capturing every little moment and fully telling their story. My images are full of emotion and have a dramatic and dreamy feel to them. I aim to create art, and I’m really into making my couples and their love stories look epic. I love to really get to know the couples I work with so they can feel comfortable around me and be themselves. In turn I can create images that reflect their personalities and who they are as a couple in love.

Bri McDaniel Photography In Atlanta | A Practical Wedding

Now, the details.

  • Bri’s wedding packages start at $2,500 and go up to $4,000. Given the massive overhead of running a wedding photography studio, I’m not sure how she’s eating, so jump on that deal while it lasts.
  • All APW couples get 10% off their packages and no travel fees.
  • Each package includes wedding day coverage, image box and custom USB drive, online gallery, and print rights. Additional portrait sessions can be added or removed, along with a second photographer.
  • Plus, she gets that her packages won’t work for everyone, so she has no problem working with you to create a package that fits your needs and budget.
  • Traveling news: “I love traveling and have a few cities that I have been dying to shoot in, so I’m even offering a special package for couples having a wedding in either New York, Washington DC, Portland, Denver, or Las Vegas. The package is $2,500 and includes full day wedding coverage, rehearsal dinner coverage (or day-after session), online gallery, image box and custom USB, and print rights.”
  • All of her packages come with an image box of one hundred quality 4×6 prints of your favorite images and a custom USB drive.

Bri McDaniel Photography In Atlanta | A Practical Wedding

You want this girl in your corner, Atlanta. Go make it happen.

Meg Keene

Meg is the Founder and EIC of APW. Her first book, A Practical Wedding: Creative Solutions for Planning a Beautiful, Affordable, and Meaningful Celebration, was published in January 2012, and has been a top three bestseller on the wedding bookshelf ever since. Meg has her BFA in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and son.

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  • Lisa

    Oh, man. If I wasn’t totally in love with our photographer, I would be so upset that I couldn’t take advantage of Bri’s no travel fee offer and have her come to our city. What stunning work!!

    • Jenna

      Same here!!! Though she probably means the *other* Portland, I think my Portland (the first one!) should be added to that list, as it’s a really wonderful little city.

      • Meg Keene

        Maddie’s Portland, you mean? ;)

    • http://brimcdanielphotography.com Bri McDaniel

      Thanks!!

  • Alexis

    This is amazing. Bri, you’re bringing a powerful and needed vision to the wedding photography business. As a woman of color in an interracial relationship myself (and one who’s not into the over-the-top traditional thing either), I feel you on how frustrating it is not to see ourselves represented in the images that are supposed to inspire the wedding planning process. I’m so glad you’re here.

    • vegankitchendiaries

      Me. This. Too! (Exactly.)

      Is there a link to hear more about the book project?

      • http://brimcdanielphotography.com Bri McDaniel

        Awesome! I don’t have a link yet, but shoot me an email (brimcdanielphotography@gmali.com) and I can give you more details :)

    • http://brimcdanielphotography.com Bri McDaniel

      Thanks so much, Alexis! Happy to be here :) Interested in joining my project by any chance? Shoot me an email if you are.

  • Sarah

    I am competely in love with these photos!! Too bad I don’t live in America…
    Also, please update us when the book comes out. I guess every relationship involves negotiation, but as one half of an interracial couple I find us negotiating so many things that I previously never thought would be issues, big or small. Also, I find it interesting that when I mention to other people our cultural differences, they look at me strangely, like these things shouldn’t be an issue or speaking about them is taboo. I wonder if because my partner has a fairly common English name (despite being Latino), grew up in Australia like me and has an Australian accent, they expect him to be like a ‘typical’ (ie. white) Australian? I would be curious to hear of others experiences.

    • http://brimcdanielphotography.com Bri McDaniel

      Thank you!! I’m always up for traveling :p
      I will definitely keep you guys updated on the book! You bring up a good point. A lot of things are still pretty taboo when it comes to speaking on issues interracial couples share. It’s been so amazing and eye opening to explore these issues and hear other couple’s experiences. Can’t wait to share them :)