As I continue to photograph more and more every year, I continually ask myself: “What makes a great, compelling image?” Is it the lighting, composition and direction? Or is it the deeply personal narrative that’s being conveyed? I don’t really believe there’s a correct answer, as long as the portfolio speaks to the client. For me, the most important component of a couple’s portrait has always been about the natural energy between two individuals, but more importantly it’s the access they’ve granted me to inhabit a space that’s generally reserved for just the two of them. The initial camera shyness and awkwardness eventually wears off, and our subjects eventually reveal their true selves. In short, this access doesn’t come easy. Some pre-session liquid courage certainly helps. And of course, being a self-deprecating clown on this side of the camera doesn’t hurt either :).