A Decade of Decisive Moments

A Decade of Decisive Moments



Today is a big day at World’s Best Wedding Photos and we’re so proud to announce the winners of our first contest this year, The Decisive Moment. Here’s a look behind the scenes.

As the Managing Editor of World’s Best Wedding Photos, I had the pleasure of supporting our judges Joe McNally, Carol Guzy, and Blair deLaubenfels who worked tirelessly to review almost 3,000 entries in choosing the winners that are now in our Award Gallery.

To begin with, Blair and I want to thank all the participating photographers. It’s not easy to put yourselves out there and we appreciate your trusting our judges and team to give your work the respect and care it deserves. 

We also want to give a HUGE thank you to our prestigous judges Joe McNally, and Carol Guzy who lent us their expertise, time and support. it was a tall order to come up with 50 winners from such a vast pool of talent, especially in the midst of a pandemic.

As part of the team, I found it exciting to see how difficult decisions were made, and to see what an international contest is like from a judge’s point of view. Having joined many photo contests myself as a wedding photographer, it was a humbling experience to see so much talent in the world around me. I was blown away by the uniquely distinctive work and it has inspired me to up my game on many levels, both as a wedding photographer and a curator. You inspire us all. 

It was also interesting to observe the passage of time in the creation of these photos, how technology has influenced our work as a collective. However, one thing remains true for all our winning photosa moment, well observed and framed, is timeless. 

During a workshop I attended with photojournalist and master portrait photographer Sam Abell, he shared that when he was younger he had shot a couple of weddings with his father. He found weddings to be stocked ponds for documentary photography, chock full of moments. Moments are constantly unfolding and that makes our jobs both easy and hard. We have to be selective in our seeing, and lightning fast in capturing what’s in front of us. We need to be sensitive to what our clients want us to see and at the same time shoot the moment as it is. 

To judge a decade of work, especially documentary wedding photography encapsulating the The Decisive Moment, we aimed to hit these points: split second timing, interesting use of story, creative composition, complexity, unique way of seeing, and technical skill. Eventually, the judges found themselves comparing similar moments and evaluating how well they achieved those factors. In the end, the task was inescapably subjective. It was those final decisions that the judges found most challenging.

After weeks of late nights and a lot of caffeine, we are proud to present to you our collection of the 50 Best Decisive Moments of the Decade from our wedding photographers. We hope you will join us in celebrating these photographs and the photographers.

Thanks again to all our participants for putting yourselves out there, wedding after wedding, contest after contest, and challenge after challenge. 

Our next contest, The Impeccable Portrait, celebrates an entirely different aspect of wedding photography that is all about making people look picture perfect. It starts right now, and goes through July 1st, 2020. We hope you will join us once more in building a global body of work that honors the artform of wedding photography. 

All the best, 
Jennifer Tai
Managing Editor

Jump over to our Award Gallery now and see all 50 winning photographs!