If you told me ten years ago that I'd be a wedding photographer today, I would have drawn a blank face.
You see, ten years ago, I was knee-deep in academia. I was a researcher, studying parenting. I was having babies (three). I was moving from Toronto to Kingston then to the Netherlands to pursue said studies...
All my life I've loved to draw, to write fiction, and to make music. But I tried to put those things aside when I turned 18 because it was the 'sensible' thing to do.
I got a BSc and an MSc and a PhD. With every extra letter, my soul died a little bit more.
That all changed in late 2015 when I photographed my friend's baby being born. For money. The same amount of money I had to pay the university monthly just so I could use their crappy little office space and feel alone. It was the birth of an idea.
Five years later, I'm happily knee-deep in photography (sometimes literally wading through water or mud to do the stuff I do).
My kids are older now, which means I can take more time away from home, to develop my career, attend workshops, retreats, and faraway weddings.
Without trying to be cliche, wedding photography energizes me. I look forward to Saturdays and Sundays because I know that I'll be dead the next day, but in a good way. Because I give it my ALL. I relish the 'wedding hangover'. Crazy? I dunno.
I take inspiration in photography, not from other wedding photographers. While there are a lot of brilliant photographers in this field, it's also full of trends and fads. It's nothing I want to be involved in.
My favourite photographers of all time include Storm Thorgerson, Max Pinckers, Alain Laboile, Richard Billingham, and Elinor Carucci (whom I've been mentored by).
Next year, I hope to be mentored by David Allan Harvey, who is another idol of mine.
I believe that all people are beautiful and have become a sap in my older years (I'm 38). Maybe I've always been a sap.
I get super emo while photographing weddings, and not always at the parts that you might expect.
I love to see families rallying around the couple, helping them, sharing tenderness and love. This is why I love to photograph the getting ready & the dance party. I feel people are at their most genuine and care-free state during those parts of the day.
18 Awards for Documentary Wedding Photography
3 Diamond Awards for Engagement Portraits
4 Awards from the Artistic Guild of Wedding Photojournalists
1 TOP Wedding Photographer Titles
The WPJA proudly recognizes Viara Mileva as a TOP International Wedding Photographer. Members holding the most contest points at the end of each year are ranked as TOP Wedding Photographers or, in some cases POY - Photographer of the Year.
Wedding Elopement Multiple Picture Galleries (3)
Viara Mileva chronicles small weddings and elopements from beginning to end. In this sense, it is no different from any other wedding day. The emphasis is on documenting key moments, capturing spontaneous displays of emotion, and telling the real story behind the elopement day. Below are wedding elopement story awards for Viara Mileva.