While the world was protesting the latest presidential election, Dina + Mike and I made magic in New York City's Central Park. I learned that in Greek culture it's customary to do a portrait session after the wedding. Honestly, it sounds like really great logic to get all dolled up again - the full dress, makeup, hair, flowers et al. - and set out on a photo adventure. I mean, that dress. With its long sleeves? Be still my heart. So adventure we did, traversing Central Park tourists in search of winterscapes and neoclassical architecture, and the fun soon commenced...
Starting at Naumburg Bandshell, Mike tossed Dina's veil to help it catch the breeze and Dina carefully wiped her lipstick from his cheek. Mike leapt down to help her descend from the stage before the two ventured out for a few twirls and dips along The Mall and paused for spontaneous dancing set to the tunes of a local Erhu busker. She played with the cusp of his lapel. He playfully licked her teeth as they leaned in close. They engaged in a witty exchange about why she was holding onto his arm instead of holding his hand. And in a brief moment of chance, Dina stood on her tip toes just as the wind caught her veil and she leaned in for a kiss on Mike's nose.
While some moments were fleeting, others repeated themselves again and again. Like the quiet calm smile on Mike's face as he leaned into his bride or the way he looked on adoringly as she broke into yet another of her scrunch-nose laughs. Dina would turn to passerby's celebratory cheers - bursting into a throw-your-head-back laughter expressing pure joy or shock - or, on occasion, a mixture of both. There was sincerity in the way they interlocked fingers when they held hands and playfulness when, as Dina fixed Mike's bowtie, he smiled as he said with a quick nod "Hey, watch this" just before sliding his hand into his pocket and smoothly turning toward camera.
An afternoon of timeless beauty and incredible moments was bettered only by Dina's throw-caution-to-the-wind-for-the-sake-of-a-great-photo demeanor, resulting in a beautifully muddied dress by the end of our time together - like something out of a Jackson Pollock painting. Now just imagine the damage we could do in the pursuit of something exceptionally imaginative if she ever opted to truly "trash the dress". Wink Wink.
If you can't quite get enough of Dina & Mike's love, be sure to check out their Greek Orthodox wedding celebration.