I should quit my job now because I’m sure I’m never going to be able to top the amount of love I have for these two ladies and their Isla Mujeres destination wedding. I want to share all their photos but I have rules against that because I’m pretty sure no one really looks after 10 images anyways, so I tried to keep it together and not go overboard. That being said, it was a priority for Britt and Crys to really take advantage of their location so after getting ready and their first look at the hotel, we had hours to cruise around the island on our golf cart Joaquin and take loads of amazing portraits inspired by the ridiculously awesome place we were in. There’s a few other of my favorites that I didn’t double up on over on their sneak peek from last week.
These two gorgeous gals hold a special place in my heart: they are former neighbors of my best mate Haley. It was an unbelievable honor to be asked to be their photographer and I hope I did them justice and that they love their photos as much as I do. Half of my job is already done when friends or acquaintances hire me. So much of what I do involves creating a relationship and a quick connection in order to bring out genuine moments in folks and when I already know you, that hurdle is non-existent.
This was not my first time to Isla Mujeres, and although it’s changed quite a bit since I stopped in here on my way home from Cuba in 2008, it still has the heart and soul of the island I originally fell in love with. Isla Mujeres is relaxed: the best sort of island time. There is inexpensive delicious ceviche at every restaurant, cold cheap Mexican beer, smiling faces and warm hearts everywhere you go. There are no massive hotels, no high rises, and no fancy private beaches for the most part. You can get $2 fish tacos from a man in a plywood booth that presses his own tortillas. You can rent a wonderful apartment on Airbnb for very little. It’s off-the-beaten path travel at it’s best and it made the most wonderful backdrop for a wedding.
After we spent the whole day jaunting around the isle, Britt and Crys were wed in front of friends and family at the Zama Beach Club, which is officially in my top five favorite venues of all time now. Instead of cake, they had a churro cart. Instead of a special cocktail, they had fresh coconuts handed out to drink from as guests walked in. Shoes were expected to be removed. Toasts were made. Sunsets were watched. Crowd-surfing happened.
Britt and Crys, I can’t wait to come visit you and all of your amazing friends in Philly. I know that your life is going to be filled with dancing, laughter and unicycles, and I wouldn’t wish anything less for the two of you.
Venue: Zama Beach Club | Wedding Planning and Day Of Coordination: Sunhorse Weddings | Invitation Design: Karith Gingrow | Bridal Gowns: BHLDN, Lace and Liberty, and The Wedding Dress Shoppe | Second Shooter: Julie Pizzo
The island of Isla Mujeres is a magical place where you ride golf carts from place to place, eat fish tacos from a man in a plywood stand who presses his own homemade tortillas to order, swing through the rafters of the bar on the main street after one too many tequila shots, and, apparently, have one of the most amazing weddings I’ve ever had the opportunity to photograph. Big thanks to Brittany and Crystal, who not only entrusted me to capture their Isla Mujeres destination wedding at the Zama Beach Club, but also gave me an entire afternoon to tromp around the island taking portraits before the ceremony. It was basically my dream come true: beach, fish tacos, plenty of hilarious women, and a wedding. Here’s a few images from their incredible day. I can’t wait to share more, including the ones from a day after trash the dress session in the ocean!
Teddy and Janet are awesome. I’m 110% certain that you can’t mention Teddy in my family without someone exclaiming, “I LOVE JANET!” Teddy, this is your future: being overshadowed by love for your wife. To be honest, I’m also 110% certain that Teddy is absolutely overjoyed for this to happen. He will be the first to tell you that Janet is not only the most important person in his life, but the best thing that’s ever happened to him. I know he’s secure in himself enough to be okay with the situation because frankly, there’s no lack of love for Teddy in my family, or any of the families that surround him. And now, this love extends and envelopes Janet as well.
Teddy grew up with my “little” brother and they have a very tight knit group of friends to this day. Despite Teddy’s distance and independence from the rest of the group, most of whom still live in Dallas, everyone adores him. Woe be upon the friend who moves away from the group! They now all also adore Janet. I can’t imagine what it was like for Janet to meet Teddy’s boisterous friends for the first time, but I can say with confidence that I’m glad I grew up with them, instead of having to be introduced to them. As my brother would say, “Dukes for life.”
It was hard to pick just a few frames to share from Teddy and Janet’s wedding. Teddy’s family hails from Liberia, Africa and with almost 200 people in attendance, half of which were in traditional African wedding attire, it made for an incredibly colorful wedding. My mother makes an appearance below, learning how to twerk. The infamous plastic vuvuzela made an appearance not only to introduce the ceremony, but through out it. Teddy’s mother and her church members catered the entire dinner, offering some traditional African dishes that were amazing! She made the best cabbage I’ve ever had!
I’m so happy for Teddy and Janet. Much like the rest of my family, I absolutely adore both of them. They are an incredible powerhouse dynamic duo: bright, smart, adventurous go-getters that remind me of myself. I know that they will achieve each and every one of their lofty dreams in life, together.
Venue: White Sparrow Barn | Invitations: Papersource | Florist: Whole Foods | Bakery: Sugar and Ice Custom Cakes | Bride’s Attire: Bridal Warehouse | Veil: Alain Patterson Couture | Bolero Designer: Alter My Heart | Groom’s Attire: Jos A. Bank
Josh and Malia are amazing. Although they’ve known each other since high school, they didn’t begin dating until much later. Today, they are the best of friends and at such ease with each other that their engagement session is still what I consider my best work ever. That being said, we did take photos for an entire eight hour day while exploring San Francisco together! They are so close, such good friends and know each other so well that they essentially bought each other the SAME wedding day gift. I can’t wait to share their photos from their first look during which they opened their presents back to back while laughing because they were essentially the same.
Both of them hail from fairly large, extremely loving families. Not only are the loving, but they are open, gracious and extremely close. I was overwhelmed by how much fun these families had together at their wedding and the amount of love shared during the toasts. I’ll share more from this gorgeous winter Arden Hills wedding, but until then, here’s a few frames to hold you over.
Nestled in the shrubs and mesquite trees of central Texas, just past the vast pink granite domes that make up Enchanted Rock State Park is a bed and breakfast that is EVERYTHING a traveler looking for a quite respite wants in their bed and breakfast. The Trois Estate is quiet and picturesque; it’s an eclectic mix of quaint Southwest, comfort, and the downright bizarre, all the while surrounded by the expansive beauty that this part of the Texas hill country has to offer. The estate’s cathedral is a sight to be seen, with an antique fireplace and wooden pews underground, but what’s really interesting is the attached hidden heated grotto, perfect for a midnight skinny-dip. You didn’t get that idea from me!
The resort offers an intimate, relaxing experience in one of the most beautiful parts of Texas and I can’t imagine a more perfect place for Aaron and Ellen to wed at. Aaron has been a prolific climber for as long as I’ve known him (which is a long time) and Ellen is a climbing convert and an avid trail runner. They were seeking an cozy private venue for a small wedding and the Trois Estate was the perfect location. Most of the guests were able to stay on-site (we had the run of the place). The ceremony was held in an enclosed tree-filled outdoor patio, a cocktail hour on an upper outdoor deck overlooking the landscape as the sun set and the dinner in a private interior dining room filled with large overbearing furniture filled with Texas charm. It was a dream venue to photograph at as well and my only regret is that I had such a busy weekend (three weddings in Texas in three days!) that I wasn’t able to sincerely enjoy the awesome that this quiet location and landscape had to provide.
The wedding was simple and absolutely reflective of Aaron and Ellen and their personalities. It was attended by immediate family and the closest of friends only and followed up with an amazing multi-course BBQ meal from Chef Jay and his incredible staff at Chef Jay Events. I can imagine a more beautiful, touching and poignant way to celebrate the love of two people I hold dear and I’m honored to have been able to photograph their day.
Here’s a few of my favorite frames from their Trois Estate wedding.
Venue: Trois Estate at Enchanted Rock | Officiant: Rob Lohmeyer | Catering: Chef Jay Events | Bride’s Dress: Badgley Mischka | Groom’s Attire: Joseph Abboud | Hair and Make-Up: Brandy Pate of Jay and Co | Rentals: Whim Rentals
I’ve wanted to share this forever!
What’s better than a romp around one of our favorite cities, while eating oysters, drinking wine, and dancing in the streets?
Kelley is best friends with one of my closest friends and I’ve known her for quite some time. I must say, it was an absolutely HUGE honor to be asked to be their wedding photographer. I am so excited to travel to Wimberly, TX this spring to photographer her marraige to Neal, who is one cool cat. When they first approached me about it, I suggested a rendezvous in a city that we all love for a destination engagement session, which they were on board with. San Francisco was eventually chosen and we all met up for one awesome weekend of fun!
We hit all the best spots for this session: Brenda’s Soul Kitchen, the super rad Phoenix Hotel, the top of California St for some views of the city, China Town and Little Italy, Coit Tower, the Ferry Building, and ultimately, The Page, the bar at which they first exchanged vows of love with each other.
Holy wedding season Batman!
The fall is wrapping up and I have to admit: I’ve been swamped. September and October were my busiest months. Thank you SO MUCH to my amazing patient clients who have all been waiting on their images. What an incredible year I’ve had so far! I’ve photographed 36 weddings so far this year and 14 of those were in the last two months. In the meatime, somethings have fallen to the wayside, like my normally proflific daily blogging and sharing of published work. Here’s a few things I’ve missed in the last two months while I’ve been so slammed!
Mo and Adam and their kick ass Celio Ranch wedding in South Lake Tahoe was snapped up by the amazing Lydia over at Ever Ours. I’m so sad that the end of the year will also mark the end of Ever Ours, a wonderful wedding blog that celebrates photography and moments over details. If you know about another wedding blog as awesome as hers that can fill those (very large) shoes, please let me know!
Borrowed & Blue San Antonio
Borrowed & Blue has been one of my favorite wedding blogs for quite some time. They never complain that there’s not enough details for one, but they also seperate their blog into US cities. When they opened up a San Antonio version of their well known site, I was quick to send over Jimmy and Karlie’s 2014 destination wedding to them. It went up a few weeks back and it’s so fun to relive their awesome day. Jimmy and Karlie just welcomed all 8lbs 2oz of Natalie, the newest addition to their family last week.
The Daily Dog Tag
The Daily Dog Tag is an awesome little blog that I recently discovered that focuses on professional photography that involves dogs, adoptable pets around the country, and artful and unique products. They published the first in a series of sessions with Schnoll Family and are excited to post follow-ups with the newest member of their family, Jack. I just recently photographed Jack’s 6 month session, so you can imagine how long ago this one was! Regardless, big thanks to the Daily Dog Tag for the family photography internet love.
Love and Lavender
I’ve wanted to get a feature on Love and Lavender for ages, but I’ve never had anything quite romantic or whimsical enough for this wonderful wedding blog that focuses on inspiring, magical and rustic outdoor weddings. I knew that David and Emily’s Empire Mine State Park wedding was the perfect fit for them and it was published last week on their site.
I’ve had so many wonderful experiences with clients I’ve discovered on Thumbtack. Not only did Thumbtack take me to visit the White House in Washington DC last January (something I’ve yet to blog about also), but I managed to grow my business and turn it into a full time position for me in very few years thanks to them. I used to mentor photographers new to the Thumbtack platform, but gave it up when they changed the program and I was no longer helping just other photogs. Helping other photographers is incredibly rewarding: frankly I wouldn’t be where I am today without a lot of help from a lot of other people. Thumbtack asked to interview me a few weeks ago after catching site of a blog I wrote about how to be successful on Thumbtack for photographers and I readily agreed. You can see the full post via this link.
I’ve been looking forward to Teddy and Janet’s wedding ever since they traveled to Tahoe last summer to visit and take engagement photos with me. They picked an amazing, fairly new venue, an unbelievably fantastic rustic barn in Quinlin, TX, just outside DFW, for their White Sparrow Barn wedding. They really wanted a big boisterous epic party and I knew they could bring just what they desired to their evening. I have to admit, I was woefully underprepared for what was to come at Teddy and Janet’s wedding day and to be honest, I think they were as unprepared as I was! Teddy’s family is large and hails from Liberia, Africa and even Teddy wasn’t sure how many of them were going to be in attendance. Over 200 wedding guests later, half of which were clad in beautiful and bright traditional African wedding attire, I came away with some amazing photos and a strong need to drink a beer. That being said, what seemed chaotic and disorganized while I was standing in the middle of it, went off in a wonderfully planned day that went exactly as it should have and insanely delicious food, all prepared by Teddy’s mother and her church group. The end result is going to be some wildly colorful wedding photos for this adventurous loving couple, but since I’m buried under editing, they probably won’t be ready until Thanksgiving week. Until then, here’s a few more than I normally share to hold you over.
Oh, and I almost forgot the best part: there should be no age limit to being a flower girl. Grandmothers as flower girls may just be the best thing ever.