How many weddings have you been to where you showed up, watched a beautiful ceremony, and then the bride and groom disappeared? "Oh they're off doing photos" they tell you as you enjoy the cocktail hour(s) while the couple are off doing setup after setup of photos, one of which will get hung on the wall. The average Bride, for a standard 8 hour wedding day and with a traditional timeline, often gets less than 2 hours of time with family and friends. All the time spent getting ready, the ceremony itself, trying to rush dinner that's almost always behind schedule, and then of course the hours of staged photos. 

Let's get you that time back. I became a documentary photographer because I believe that Weddings are not about the photographer. Weddings are about a dad's tears when he sees his daughter in her dress, they're about funny faces on the dance floor, they're about hugs. Weddings are about shared moments. 

As a documentary style wedding photographer, my goal is to make sure you get to enjoy as much time as possible with your family and friends, because that's when the real magic happens. Yes we will make time for portraits, and yes we can do some family photos. But rather than make those the center piece of your day, they enhance it. Because the best memories are out on the dance floor, in a hilarious toast, and in all the little moments in between. 

Weddings are not about the Photographer...

I'm Ben Wagner, a Documentary Wedding photographer Based in Seattle, Washington


capturing unexpected moments

My Other One True Love

my one true love

The cinema, Street Photography, Strong black coffee, Arsenal's Free-flowing attack, The Tokyo Subway System

Inspired By

My passion for candid style photographer began my senior year of high school when I received my first digital camera as a birthday gift. I used that camera to document some of the best times of my life: prom, senior trip, my first years at college.
After over ten years of documenting my daily life, I began shooting professionally in 2018.

I received my MA in English in 2016, and I continue to explore the connection between photography and the written word, and my writing and photography have been featured in Fuji X Passion Magazine.

Born and raised in South Carolina, after 15 years of living in the Salt Lake Valley I moved to the Seattle area in late 2020, where I live with my wife and dog (pictured above), who I photograph constantly – to both their annoyance.

Recent Awards:

About Ben

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Weddings are not about the Photographer 

Guiding Principals

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Embrace imperfection

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Guiding Principals

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Authentic photographs are better than "perfect" photographs

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Guiding Principals

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"Your eye must see a composition or an expression that life itself offers you, and you must know with intuition when to click the camera.

That is the moment the photographer is creative...The Moment! Once you miss it, it is gone forever." - Henri Cartier-Bresson

Guiding Principals

08. Which talent would you like to have?

a. New York
b. Tokyo
c. Paris
d. Rome

07. Where would you most like to live

Making Espresso and editing photos

06. what is your favorite morning routine?

05. Who is your hero of fiction?

04. Who are your favorite writers?

03. What is your most Treasured Possession?

Haruki Murakami

02. Which living person do you admire most?

01. what is your idea of perfect Happiness?

Get to know me - The Proust Quiz

Traveling the world with my wife, Photographing The great world cities

Besides my wedding ring, my Leica MP 35mm Film Camera

Shakespeare, Stephen King, George Orwell, Murakami



Industry Recognition

Yes! I understand that family photos are an important part of the wedding as they are the rare opportunity for everyone to be together. Before the wedding I will ask you to send me the list of the most important family group shots. I do ask my couples to keep the groupings to ten or less, that way we can get the group shots done quickly and efficiently to let you enjoy the day. 

our parents will want family photos, is this ok? 

Of course! From a photography perspective, deciding on whether or not to do a first look is one of the biggest decisions on your wedding timeline. My couples tend to split about 40/40/20 on whether or not to do a formal first look, a traditional, walking down the aisle first look, or no first look at all. I'm happy to consult on which option you feel makes sense for your personality.  

Can we do a first look?

I do not provide sneak peeks as a general rule. I have found this slows down the entire process and creates delays. 

I may provide one or two sneak peek photos on request if needed for thank you notes. 

Can we get a sneak peek of our wedding photography?

Each photo is meticulously edited for exposure, contrast, highlights, shadows, color, temperature, etc. using professional editing software. 

In-depth retouching techniques, i.e. liquifying, removing double chins, face or body swapping, excessive skin smoothing, using AI to remove Uncle Bob's date, etc. will not be used. 

Will you do retouching of our wedding photos?

A general rule of thumb is a minimum of 50 finished photographs per hour of shoot time (in actuality it’s usually more). Each photo is also delivered in both color and black and white, so for an 8 hour wedding day you can expect a minimum of 800 total photos, 400 in color, 400 black and white. 

HOw many photographs will I get?

Photo delivery time varies depending on workload, in my standard contract 8 weeks is the maximum time allowed. During the summer wedding season, 6-7 weeks is around average. Turnaround time is usually faster during the slower season (November - May).

HOw long does it take to get my wedding photos?

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes! I own several film cameras and usually shoot a roll or two of film photography on the wedding day. You may have even seen some film photos mixed in throughout this website and in my portfolio. I don't currently add any additional fees for a a few rolls of film casually taken throughout the day. If you are interested in a more comprehensive film package I am happy to discuss shooting more, or exclusively film, including both 35mm and 120mm. 

We love film, can you shoot wedding photos on film? 

I have anywhere from 3-6 cameras with on a wedding day. This ensures that even if a camera were to break, I have multiple options.

The first thing I do when I return home is offload the memory cards onto a Solid State Drive, this drive is immediately backed up to the cloud and to a local backup in my home office, ensuring that even if my house burned down your photos would be backed up.  

How do you backup our wedding photos?

While I am based in the Seattle area most of my weddings take place in the broader Pacific Northwest. I am happy to travel for your wedding photography and I have shot weddings across the Western United States.

Additional travel fees do apply based on mileage.  

Where are you and can you travel to our wedding? 

 Let's do this!