This photo won the international wedding photographers competition thanks to a winged intruder.

Weddings are one of those events that are impossible not to immortalize: a professional photographer won first prize in a competition dedicated to newlyweds thanks to a truly unique photo. How did she achieve this result?

Alpine wedding photo wins first prize in international competition

Tara Lilly Photography

Wedding photographer Tara Lilly, from Whistler, Canada, won the International Wedding Photographer of the Year competition, rewarding the best wedding photos. Tara founded Tara Lilly Photography with her husband Steve, where she showcases her talent for capturing one of the most important and special moments in a couple’s life. Both wedding photographers, their activity has continued for fifteen years, capturing and witnessing the union of lovers around the world. Their work is indeed international, and it is when the “yes” from Mikaela and Mitch that Tara won first prize in the competition.

Of course, events like weddings are meant to be evocative, romantic and emotionally strong, but Lilly managed to capture the wedding of the two spouses in a unique and even more special way. The newlyweds’ nuptials took place on a mountaintop in Whistler, Canada, on the territory of the Sk̲wx̲wú7mesh and L̓il̓wat7úl First Nations. “We took the 4×4 jeeps to an alpine meadow, which is home to many animals, including Canada jays,” says Tara. The Canada jay is a sparrow-like bird belonging to the Corvidae family. This specimen chose the perfect moment to appear on Mikaela‘s head, just as she and Mitch were getting married.

Tara Lilly and her husband Steve plan romantic getaways for an unforgettable wedding

Tara Lilly/International Wedding Photographer of the Year

In 2020, Tara and Steve founded Whistler Elopements, a company that organizes weddings in unique locations, creating true “love escapes” in dream places.
“ Our mission is to offer you and your partner a unique and unforgettable experience. By combining intimacy and adventure, we create extraordinary romantic escapes in the mountains. Say your vows surrounded by the beauty of nature, celebrating the love and commitment you share in the most meaningful way. We take care of the details, allowing you to focus on what really matters,” they write on their site.

For photographers, the mountains have a ‘taste of home’ and their aim is to offer adventurous couples an intimate and unforgettable wedding in the Whistler hinterland, between spectacular sunsets and helicopter trips.
“ We have been wedding photographers since 2010 and have always had a passion for capturing the beauty of love and the natural world . As a family business, we understand the importance of creating unique and special experiences for our couples in an extraordinary natural environment. »
And Mikaela and Mitch’s wedding really was, thanks to the little bird who “invited herself to the party.”

Whiskey Jack, the bird that became the star of the winning photo

Cephas/Wikimedia Commons – CC BY-SA

The adorable intruder decided to make a break for the bride’s head just as Mitch was getting ready to pronounce his vows. Mikaela, in her white wedding dress with orange floral patterns, burst into thunderous laughter full of wonder, but the bird had no intention of leaving. So, Tara took the opportunity to take a truly memorable photo. And she did well, because she won the first prize in the 2023 edition of the International Wedding Photographer of The Year competition, the first prize of which is $1,500 in cash and a set of photographic equipment.

“ Mikaela’s shock, surprise and laughter did not deter this bird from using its perch ” Lilly wrote, explaining that Mikaela joked with guests that, “I’m Snow White! »

Tara explained that the alpine meadow chosen to celebrate the couple’s union is frequented by many animals, including whiskey jacks. “If you have visited Whistler in winter, you may have seen these little birds entertaining skiers waiting in the lift queue by landing on ski poles held in the air. »

This bird is found primarily in Canada, but some specimens are also found in the mountains of the western United States and Alaska. It’s not difficult to spot them by following hikers and skiers traveling park trails, as these brave birds like to venture into places such as cabins or campsites, stealing whatever food they have. #39;they find. This is why one of their nicknames is “field thieves“. Apparently, they also like to be the center of attention, as the award-winning photo taken by Tara shows: this animal not only loves to steal food, but also the stage, becoming the undisputed star of this wedding.

What do you think of this unusual photo? Do you think she deserved the first prize in the competition in question?

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