Grateful For The Community Of Photographers

Grateful For The Community Of Photographers

This morning our community tragically lost an amazing photographer, Marvell Smith. I have had the opportunity to get to know Marvell, or as his friends call him "V" or "Vell", over the last couple years and have a tremendous respect for him as a person and talented wedding photographer. When news got out this morning about the loss, I was truly amazed at how a community of photographers came together over social media groups to pay tribute and make sure V's client's needs are met.

After hearing this morning about the loss of a friend I was touched to see how many people stepped up to lend a hand. Within a matter of minutes a group was formed on Facebook where photographers from all over the country were offering to help shoot V's booked weddings and even donate the proceeds from the wedding to the family of our lost friend. It helped me realize that we all belong to a caring community. Photographers might have their gripes with each other, we might fight over business models or other little needless things, but when someone is in a time of need our community knows how to step up and lend a hand.

In this new tribute group that came together on Facebook many photographers were offering their help to first or second shoot, edit, or others were even working together to reach out to the brides. Can you imagine if your wedding is just a few days away and you hear that your photographer has tragically passed away? While it would be hard to fill V's shoes, it fills my heart to see that his brides are receiving a list of photographers who have offered to step up and help out.

I keep stumbling over my words this morning as I am trying to put this together while wiping the water out of my eyes. Hopefully what I am trying to say makes sense. In short, I just want to say how gracious I am to see a community of photographers stepping up to help out one of our own.

Voted Utah's 2012 Wedding Photographer of the Year, Marvell Smith was an extremely talented and skilled photographer that will be missed. Earlier this year I shared an article on Marvell along with a video of him teaching a group about posing. Here are a few of his photos followed by links to his website and Facebook page. Take a few minutes today as a tribute to check out his work. I am sure it will inspire you as it has inspired me over the years. Website | Facebook | Blog. In addition to being a photographer Marvell was a tremendous father to his two sons he raised and also worked as a police officer in Utah.

A memorial fundraiser has been set up to raise money for Marvell Smith's two sons. Click here to view the fundraiser and donate what you can.

“On the death of a friend, we should consider that the fates through confidence have devolved on us the task of a double living, that we have henceforth to fulfill the promise of our friend's life also, in our own, to the world.” ― Henry David Thoreau
Fstoppers Marvell Smith 1

Fstoppers Marvell Smith 2

Fstoppers Marvell Smith 3

Fstoppers Marvell Smith 4

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Vincent Morretino's picture

Rest in peace, Marvell :(

Matt Kennedy's picture

My deepest condolences for his family and close friends. I am inspired by the reaction of the photography community to come behind him and support them in their loss. Take a moment to give your spouse and kids a hug, you never know when this kind of thing can happen to you.

Tara Minishak Amico's picture

What happened???

Trevor Dayley's picture

He passed away shortly after arriving at the hospital from an accident. A large truck turned in front of him.

Tara Minishak Amico's picture

So sad, I lost someone close last week the exact same way.

Marty Bru's picture

Oh my gracious, I just dislike when great folks go before their time, especially when it's something like this.

Christian Wininger's picture

Motorcycle accident. Very sad. :( I had meet Vell at a photographer get together and he definately stood out from the group. He was very charasmatic and funny from what I can remember.

Emma Smith's picture

<3 ya Marvell! You were a talent, a bright star.. you will be missed greatly. <3

David Apeji's picture

Rest in Peace

Heather Dunnigan's picture

Marvell, while we didn't know one another well, the loss of you in our industry today is palpable. My deepest condolences go out to every person you touched throughout your life and my prayers are with your family.

Kenneth Riis Kristensen's picture


James Reilly's picture

What a shame! :( The man leaves behind some beautiful work that I'm sure he'll be remembered for long after he's gone.

Keith Powell's picture

We are all better for knowing him. He will be missed.

Jeremy Hall's picture

Such a great tribute. Marvell was a great talent and a friend to all. He will be sorely missed. It was out our studio that video was made, and he was always willing to share his knowledge with anyone. We've lost an amazing member of our photography family.

Kevin Maurice's picture

RIP Marvell.

Pascual Cora Jr.'s picture

RIP Marvell, a very sad day indeed.

Anna Padilla's picture

RIP, Marvell! Prayers for your family and friends.
You are an inspiration!

Peter S's picture

when a human life is lost its always a sad day for someone! My thoughts goes out to his family..! May i meet you one day in Valhalla and share some mjød!

Trevor Dayley's picture

In addition to taking incredible shots with his camera, Marvell always dressed with style.

Feuza's picture

he had such swagger!

Spicy Tee's picture

Adieu Marvell. We will all miss your heart ad your smile

Kelli West's picture

I will miss you Marvell!! You were so kind to everyone and always made everyone feel special. Thank you for your positive influence!!

Tasha S Prescott's picture

We definitely lost one of the good guys. RIP Vell! much love my friend.

Terra's picture

Love you Vell! You always made me feel so good about myself and I love to be around you. You will be missed SOOOOO much!

Paul Hance's picture

Rest in Peace

Marnie Oliver's picture

A candlelight vigil has been arranged for Marvell this evening at Canyon View Park in Riverton, which is 12200 South and approx 4600 West @ 8 pm. Please feel free to being any photos of Marvell you would like to share. There will be a microphone for anyone who would like to say something. The city would like us to remind everyone (which I'm sure this goes without saying), but no alcohol or smoking. Thank you for everyone's support!

Yves Chan's picture

So sad to hear. So tragic. My deepest condolences to you and his entire family. May you rest in peace. Great great work sir.

Sarah Perkins's picture

Beautifully written @tdayley:disqus .

Heather LaBone's picture

I didn't know him, but was so sad to hear of such a great loss. Knowing he leaves behind two boys is so heartbreaking. It does make my heart smile to read how our photography community has come together for him. Rest in peace Marvel.