2023 Wedding Photography + Travel: Year in Review

January 25, 2024

2023 Wedding Recap | Hudson Valley NY Wedding Photographer | LGBTQ Wedding Photographer

It’s time for my 2023 wedding photography recap, from the Philippines to Connecticut

Kathryn Cooper Weddings aviation theme wedding with paper airplanes

A Look Back at 2023 | Kathryn Cooper Weddings

It’s 2024, which means it’s time for a 2023 recap.

As I think about my 2023 year in review, how was your 2023? Let me know down below–I really do want to know.

My 2023 went pretty well, and was my most successful, busy year as an elopement and wedding photographer here at Kathryn Cooper Weddings. In the first few months alone, I photographed a beautiful Redwoods elopement; a crazy party in Los Angeles; an island bride in Cebu, the Philippines; cliffside elopements in Upstate New York; an intense Yosemite hiking elopement; a fire lantern festival proposal in Pennsylvania; and so much more.

However, I struggle with recap posts like these, because they all too often sound like bragging. And while certain elements of 2023 were super successful, others were a struggle.

2023 was my best year yet as a wedding+elopement photographer and event photographer, and I am extremely thankful for that. I had more proposals, engagement photos, elopements, adventure sessions, and weddings to capture than I ever have before. Work-wise, I started the year in upstate New York, then the Caribbean, then California…it was from California to Connecticut quite a bit, and everywhere in between!

I captured headshots, galas, commercial work, the SAG-AFTRA strike, and more.

Still, 2023 had challenges. Due to COVID repercussions, my friendships definitely struggled. As an immunocompromised person, I still don’t feel safe in most gatherings, and had to skip parties, networking events, and various gatherings due to illness rates—I just can’t take my chances a lot of the time. That said, I was able to read more, and I took up a new hobby of cell painting—and perhaps I’ll post more on that later.

Even for those who just feel that COVID is a “you get sick, you take off of work for a few days, and you go on with your life” deal, well—I can’t just “miss” a day of work in this line of work. I work really hard for months and years to help plan and create with all my couples and organizations, so missing one day of in-person work would be quite awful. Luckily it hasn’t happened a single time in 10 years!

In 2023, in addition to my thriving business, I was able to travel quite a lot with a few close friends (who were also COVID-safe), and managed to stay safe and healthy. This was the most travel I’d done since 2019.

2023 Travels + Travel Photography

My travel + work adventures this year took me from Paraguay to Taiwan, and from the Philippines to the Caribbean.

In addition to being a full-time wedding photographer and New York event photographer, I’m also a professor at Pepperdine University in California. One of my responsibilities in my adjunct job is to research the various non profit, for-profit, and other organizations our students study at during our school term—so I am often traveling and photographing NGOs and projects around the world.

In 2023, my photography, fun, teaching, and travel brought me to Brazil, Paraguay, Panama, Canada, Indonesia, the Philippines, Taiwan, Portugal, and of course parts of the U.S.

2023 Travel Highlights

I absolutely adore non profit photography, and was fortunate in 2023 to capture organizations all over the world.

I met enterprising women in a tiny village in Indonesia, and that was amazing. I got to relax on a boat in the islands off Panama, and that was awesome (minus the sunburn). Scuba diving in the Philippines was delightful, and trekking in the rainforests of Sumatra to see orangutans was just outstanding.

Destination Wedding Photography

I photographed weddings and celebrations in the Philippines, Connecticut, New York, California, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Pennsylvania.

My couples in 2023 were so much fun, and so excited about my quirky, creative, and candid storytelling style. I got to use smoke bombs, lighting contraptions, and even paper airplanes!

So, below are some of my favorite travel + wedding photos that I took in 2023. This is by no means a bit of everything—rather, just some photos that I feel have really captured such a great 365 days of adventure.

What’s your favorite?

Here’s to a safe, happy, and healthy 2024~

Kathryn Cooper Weddings’ 2023 Wedding Photography Recap

Kathryn Cooper Weddings: New York Wedding Photographer | California Wedding Photographer | Destination Wedding Photographer |
LGBT Wedding Photographer | NY Elopement Photographer | Hudson Valley Wedding Photographer

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I an in love with all of your colorful photos! It looks like you had an amazing year! Hope your 2024 is just as incredible.

What an amazing year! I’ve loved following along on your adventures. Every single shot was just breathtaking.


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