Now here's a photo series that will soften the hearts of love's most stubborn cynics. Inspired by her own parents' marriage, which lasted for 46 years, Saratoga Springs, New York-based photographer Tracey Buyce started a photo series last year showing couples that have been married for 40 years or more. She started a contest on her blog, asking people to nominate these couples, who would, for their time, receive a free portrait session and a flash drive of images.
As she wrote on her blog, "Each relationship has its own unique beginnings and from that unfolds decades of shared lives. Marriage is complex, full of ups and downs and joys and sorrows. Marriage is your own little universe, that just the two of your create. I want to help your family celebrate the gift of marriage through photography."
So far, Buyce has photographed five couples including Norbert and Mary who have been married the longest, at 71 years. As they sit quietly, holding hands while basking in candlelight, one is reminded of the fact that true love does exist. They were nominated by their granddaughter-in-law Kaitlin who had this to say: "Their love is reflected in their 13 children, 24 grandchildren and the growing number of great-grandchildren. They travel, read, garden, watch 'Jeopardy,' and love sharing fond memories and stories...They are the kindest, most loving people and such wonderful role models for marriage."
Throughout the project, what did the photographer find to be the running theme? "One thing all of these couples had in common was a quiet comfort between them," Buyce told Huffington Post.
Norbert & Mary, Married 71 Years
Gloria & Walter, Married 65 Years
Russ & Elinor, Married 63 Years
Martha & George, Married 70 Years