By Christine Hochkeppel owner of Salty Broad Studios
I think we can all agree that the gay rights movement has made some great strides in the last decade but, we still have a long way to go. We still hear true stories of groom-groom couples being turned away from cake makers and homophobic venues rejecting a gay couple’s wedding celebration. Hell, I even had a bride/bride couple work with me after the first wedding photographer they inquired with said “after praying on it,” she decided she could not work with them. It’s a hard pill to swallow but there is something you can do to fight back! When planning your wedding, seek out vendors who are part of our queer-lovin’ community! Here’s a couple a great reasons why you should go-gay when hiring your wedding day team.
1. Comfort – No awkwardness about misused pronouns or ignorant mistakes (my first hand experience – a florist labeled a bride’s boutonniere “for the groom”)
2. Sensitivity – Every family has drama but families’ with queer kids tend to have a little more (major understatement). I make sure I get to know my couples and their family dynamics before the big day to avoid any painful mentions or triggers.
3. Camaraderie – I’m out and proud and I LOVE celebrating that pride. Simply put, it’s FUN working with gay folks and you can really feel that bond when you work with LGBTQ+ run businesses.
4. Laughter – Let’s face it, you can laugh with LGBTQ+ peeps about things that straight people just don’t identify with and you know giggles make everything better.
5. Advocacy – Supporting LGBTQ+-owned businesses means that you are putting your money where your heart is and you are helping these businesses earn more success and credibility to attract more LGBTQ+ couples for the future.
Here’s a few firsthand accounts from real same-sex couples who hired Salty Broad Studios for their big gay weddings…
“Working with Christine was a ton of FUN. She was funny, up-beat, and had us laughing when we could have been stressed. It was meaningful to have a LGBTQ wedding photographer to help us document this important moment in our lives. Wedding photographers capture very intimate moments, which, for gay and lesbian couples, can feel uncomfortable to share. It was reassuring to know that Christine understood and appreciated this. We’d recommend that any LGBTQ couple seeking a wedding photographer consider hiring someone who is also LGBTQ for these reasons, and to support LGBTQ-owned businesses.” -Janie & Cristina
“As a lesbian couple, we are so thrilled that we had the opportunity to choose a gay photographer to shoot our wedding. For one thing, it is important to us to be selective about our vendors and support local LGBTQ+ businesses when we can. Second of all, we were so instantly comfortable in front of the camera knowing that a fellow LGBTQ+ identifying person was behind the lens. We had full faith that there was no judgment coming from our photographer, and we knew that she would be able to capture our love as something beautiful – and she did!” -Maggie & Kelli
“Being a gay couple, of course, I was worried about whether I would get along with the photographer, or experience micro aggressions. It can be hard to find, but generally queer photographers are more empathetic, and better able to relate and accurately assess how to be supportive and create and capture beautiful moments throughout our journey.” -David & Nathaniel