More often than not, we don’t get to see the man behind the camera. So for this week’s In Tandem, wedding photographer Josh Merideth lets us hold up a figurative lens to his marriage so we could get the full picture of how creativity can co-exist with organization.
How did you meet?
After graduating from the University of Louisville, Shana moved to Washington D.C. and then to the Big Apple. The year was 2001 which put Shana right in the middle of the September 11 tragedy.
“After September 11 happened, I thought, ‘I need to go home,’ ” Shana said. So she packed up and without hesitation moved back to Louisville. Even though Shana was coming home her big-city taste had not changed. “I was thinking, I don’t want to move home and date a Louisville guy,” but as luck would have it, her sister introduced her to Josh Merideth, and the rest is picture perfect.
Almost immediately the two hit it off. “I thought to myself, ‘Wow, here’s this guy who is cultured, loves art and dresses well.’ We went on a few dates and I think after the third we just both thought ‘well, this is it.
“It was never a question after that, we never broke up or had any relationship hiatus. It was instant,” Shana said.
“We dated for about a year in a half and that was it,” Josh added.
How did he propose?
So a little over a year later Shana’s birthday happened to fall on Derby, and in true Derby weekend fashion, Josh took quite the gamble.
“We had plans to go to a couple Derby parties that year so I had told everyone of my plan beforehand, so she was the only person not in on it,” Josh said.
Josh, who played college baseball at Bellarmine University, had a game that day. “I had my buddies fill up helium balloons with Scrabble letters in each one. As she popped the balloons, she began to unscramble the letters which spelled out ‘marry me?’ Josh said.
“And here we are,” Shana added.
How do you make it work on a day-to-day basis?
The couple tend to feed off their “opposites attract personalities” but came together on a book due out this summer titled, “The Original Makers Club.” The guide to locally-owned businesses will be on display in every room at 21c Museum Hotel.
“We are very much a yin and yang couple,” Shana said. Josh who owns his own studio and thrives on creativity does not share the same ‘type A’ organization strategies as Shana, who is an analyst at Liberty Mutual.
“His weaknesses are my strengths and vice versa. We bring it all together, and our kid’s really get the best of both worlds. I’m very structured and he is artsy and plans fun projects for them to do and they get a lot from our differing personalities,” Shana said.
“We take them everywhere with us whether its brunch at Corbett’s or dinner at Proof they’re definitely a huge part of our everyday lives,” Josh said, “and it really works for us because she brings the stability which allows me to be creative.”
How do you divide up household chores?
“I do everything,” Shana said without missing a beat. Laughing Josh knowingly shook his head.
“True, I designed the house and she cleans it!” Josh added.
“But that is purely by choice,” Shana said “I’m total ‘type A’ so he is very big picture and I am detailed oriented. I like to clean because I can do it my way. If he does laundry it would be a disaster,” Shana added.
“I’ll offer to help but she will just be right there behind me to fix it,” Josh laughed.
Where do you like to go when you’re out ‘n’ about?
“We are all over the place,” Josh said. But the couple did admit they love Louisville originals such as Hillbilly Tea, Proof on Main, 732 Social and Please and Thank You, a new Louisville locale.
What is one thing you always do as a couple?
The couple were on the same page with this answer when they both affirmed “travel” as their go-to activity.
“We love to travel,” Josh said. “We did quite a bit of traveling as a couple when we were dating and first married, so we got out a lot of our bucket list on the honeymoon. Now, the majority of our vacations are family-based. We love bringing the kiddos along, we’ll go to Disney World and try to make it out to Napa every couple years.
What is some advice you would offer for couples new – or – old who desire to walk through life in tandem?
“It is hard to say without being cliché but a lot of the clichés are pretty accurate,” Shana began.
“I would say always be honest with each other, always mean what you say and say what you mean,” Shana added.
“I think sharing is huge,” Josh added “the more you share with each other and not just co-exist the more attached you are.”
“We’ve tried the whole ‘he does his thing, I do mine’ but we found that, at least for us, the more we do together the more we feel connected,” Shana added.
“You have to connect to make it work,” Josh said.
May 14, 2005.
Bella Grace, 5 – yes, Josh’s studio is named after his first-born daughter – and Emma Caroline (3).
Josh owns Bella Grace Studios and Shana is an analyst for Liberty Mutual.
Cats or Cards
100 percent Cats. No fair-weathered fans here.
Category: In Tandem
About the Author (Author Profile)
Voice-Tribune Staff Writer Lauren DePaso enjoys being a tourist in her own city, exploring the nightlife and cheering on the Cards. A Louisville native, she currently resides in St. Matthews.