2019 WPJA Photographer of the Year

To call Yves Schepers’ first year as a WPJA member eventful would be an understatement. Not only did the Belgian photographer win 41 monthly contest awards in 2019, but he capped his big year by being named WPJA Photographer of the Year. Not bad for a former corporate engineer who just began shooting weddings in 2014.

To call Yves Schepers’ first year as a WPJA member eventful would be an understatement. Not only did the Belgian photographer win 41 monthly contest awards in 2019, but he capped his big year by being named WPJA Photographer of the Year. Not bad for a former corporate engineer who just began shooting weddings in 2014.

Schepers describes his approach to wedding photography as a hybrid between creative portraiture and documentary, though even that description may be too confining.  Because he loves the whole gamut of photographic possibilities that a wedding affords him, his work cannot easily be pigeon-holed into one style or another.  On his website, he cautions prospective clients not to expect a “standard report” but rather “timeless images that capture your authenticity.” He dares his clients to allow him to expose their personalities.

Schepers’ willingness, even eagerness, to try something different keeps him on the creative edge and is evident in his wide-ranging portfolio. He is as apt to find his “timeless images” on the fringes of the wedding day as in the inner circle of the bride and groom. There are no bit players at weddings at which he is shooting; everyone in attendance is fair game. All that counts is “raw, intense, funny and even fragile ingredients that will color a future memory.”  

In his relatively short time in the wedding photography community, Schepers has come to relish the camaraderie he has struck up with fellow professionals. He is a networking advocate who advises newcomers to join associations such as WPJA and to view fellow members not as rivals but as colleagues whose sage advice can advance their careers.

Schepers shoots family and corporate events as well as weddings, but it is safe to say that he has left his corporate engineering days behind him. He does not regret the day that he decided to trade in his slide rule for a light meter. Now, he says cheerily, “As long as my images evoke emotions, I'm a happy camper."