Jason Thrasher and Weddings
Jason Thrasher is not your typical wedding photographer. Thrasher's a trained artist, with degree in Fine Art Photography from UGA's Lamar Dodd School of Art, and his work has been exhibited and published internationally. His first book, Athens Potluck, was published in 2017 and won the Georgia Author of the Year Award in 2018. His wide-ranging experience as a professional photographer means he's ready for any job. Thrasher has the ability to truly experience each moment and create a series of photographs, which tell the story of each wedding day in an artistic body of work to be cherished for years to come.
“As of 2019, I’ve photographed over 375 weddings. For the first eight years, each of my weddings was shot on film, but since 2006 I’ve been shooting with state-of-the-art digital cameras. I am currently shooting with a Canon 5D4 and Sony A7R2. I’m certain that I’ve clicked the shutter at weddings over a million times and I have seen almost everything you can imagine over the years. I have photographed weddings so small that I was the witness on the marriage license, and I’ve photographed weddings so large that roads and bridges were constructed just for the celebration weekend.
I photographed my first wedding shortly after I graduated from UGA’s Lamar Dodd School of Art. As a young fine art photographer, I never imagined I’d photograph weddings, but when one of my oldest friends asked me to shoot photos at her wedding, I couldn’t say no and I actually ended up having a great time. Shortly after that wedding, I was asked to photograph the wedding of a gay Jewish couple in Atlanta. I was blown away by the loveand the support from both families for the couple. Seeing the Hora danced with the two men raised high above the room on chairs and both families dancing around them in celebration I realized how special weddings could be, but I still didn’t plan on spending my life as a “Wedding Photographer.” Soon after I traveled to India on a spiritual journey. I had gone into some debt getting to the other side of the planet and was worried about how I was going to make a living as an artist on my return to the States. I was literally meditating with monks high in the Himalayan Mountains when a voice in my head told me to go home and photograph weddings. When I returned I printed the photo you see below and donated it to an benefit art auction. A stranger-- a young woman named Beth Hall-- bought it and was inspired to visit India because of the image from my travels. Just over a year later we were married.
Shortly after I returned from India I was asked to photograph my third wedding and my first truly professional job. It was a big wedding at a new bed & breakfast, Ashford Manor, just outside of Athens GA. The photographs from that wedding got the attention of a fantastic wedding gown designer named Chris Hudson. She hired me to photograph her latest designs. We made a lot of photos that day but this image of Chris’ model at the golden wall kick-started my career. Within months of showing this photo I was completely booked for the following months, and was soon photographing weddings year-round.
As a photographer I have always tried to balance my career with equal parts professional work mixed with my personal art projects. I would not and could not be happy if I didn’t make photography for my own art projects. Living in the great music town of Athens, Georgia, I’ve always been a fan of its world class music scene. I was drawn to Athens for the art and music scene, and most of my friends are artists and musicians. One the the great joys of my life has been being part of the Athens artistic community and capturing it in the process.
My life and work truly came together with the publication of my first book, Athens Potluck. My book is not only about the Athens music scene, but it’s my story of Athens with in introduction by my wife Beth Hall Thrasher and a forward written by Patterson Hood of the Drive-By Truckers. I met Patterson in 2004, when I was hired to photograph his wedding. Our families became close, and I was soon working with his band. Working with the Truckers was really the beginning of the second part of my professional career of photographing musicians and making music videos.
I’ve been very lucky to get to work with a diverse group of people from all walks of life. One of the things I value most about my career as a professional photographer is the range of subjects I get to photograph and it enriches my life each time I hear a new story or learn about a different person’s life. I would literally go nuts if I only did one kind of photography.
Photography always surprises me, and I’m truly honored to be meeting and working with so many cool couples.