katie + alan // portland, oregon intimate wedding

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katie + alan // portland, oregon intimate wedding

Katie and Alan created an intimate day that was authentic to them and focused on what mattered most to them as a couple. While their day was simple, it was filled with thoughtful touches that were meaningful to them. A quiet anticipation surrounded Katie as she got ready, and emotions filled the air between her and her bridesmaids leading up to the ceremony. After the ceremony, I could tell she and Alan were just so contented to be in each others presence, and they allowed me to get close and capture some of my favorite photos from last year...it's always creatively inspiring when you're given freedom as an artist and allowed to just observe a scene.  Honestly, their ability to get lost in each other and interact in front of the camera without needing a lot of directing/prompting was essential to this, and I felt like an observer witnessing a beautiful romance rather than an intruder forcing a connection. Following their intimate ceremony at their church, Door of Hope, they held a family style dinner reception at the lovely Portland space Elder Hall.  Not only were the spaces meaningful to them, they were honestly just really great in terms of aesthetic, and helped in creating a beautiful atmosphere. Even their church had lovely and unique elements along with beautiful light slipping through the windows that illuminated the entire church in an almost ethereal way.

 I'll always be a fan of weddings that place focus on simple beauty without compromising a couple's style or values.

“It was rather beautiful: the way he put her insecurities to sleep. The way he dove into her eyes and starved all the fears and tasted all the dreams she kept coiled beneath her bones.”

― Christopher Poindexter

Dress by Sarah Seven, florals by the ultra-talented Hart,  hair and makeup by Blossom and Beauty.

 

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ashley + andrew // waterfall elopement in oneonta gorge, oregon

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ashley + andrew // waterfall elopement in oneonta gorge, oregon

When Ashley first contacted me, I felt an immediate connection. She had stumbled upon my blog post of a shoot I did in Oneonta Gorge from a couple years ago, and even though she lived in a suburb outside of Chicago, the organic and serene beauty of the gorge called to her. In her own words from her first email to me: " I have never dreamed of a wedding, a dress, or an extravagant party, I actually felt bad for those girls because the focus was always lost... My dream was to have a day, or a moment, that was just ours, intimate, and indescribable, something that wasn't for show but was just for us." I believe this is that and more. The water was starkly cold, yet revitalizing, and we eventually allowed ourselves to just embrace it as we made our way down the stream. The walls of the gorge surrounded them as they exchanged vows barefoot beneath the waterfall, and although people were around us, it felt like the world stood still, and all that existed was them in front of my camera. Those are the most beautiful moments to me; the ones that are poignant and that can be felt even as solely a witness.

Ironically, I visited the very city she and Andrew lived in when I went to Chicago/Illinois the month before their elopement, and didn't even make the connection until I went to mail them their USB. How incredibly random is that? I could have met up with them for a nice lunch if I had known. All that to say, I felt like being part of their day was "fate" if you will, and these two are truly special to me, and this day is forever a favorite.

florals by Ponderosa and Thyme / dress by Sarah Seven / videographer Moving Pictures

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Rangefinder Magazine's Top 30 Rising Stars of Wedding Photography

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Rangefinder Magazine's Top 30 Rising Stars of Wedding Photography

Part of me still can't believe I'm able to write this post, that this is a reality and I was named one of Rangefinder Magazine's rising stars of wedding photography for 2016. After being nominated, I spent hours and hours pouring through my last couple years of work to select 30 photos for submission. The process was painstaking, and even though I agonized over it, I still never truly believed I would be chosen amidst so much awe-inspiring talent. But alas, one early October day when I was hugely pregnant at 38 weeks and feeling "done" with everything, I received the email that indeed, I had been chosen as one of the 30 from over 200 submissions all over the world. How incredibly humbling this is to be named among those I admire so much. And now, after keeping this news to myself for the past two months, I can finally share it with you all.

I'm not sure how I really ended up here at times, as I never really envisioned this life for myself but God has a great way of giving us better than what we have in mind. Now here I am four years after first starting my business, and just my second year full time and it's all because of the amazing people in my life. Thank you so much to my husband, who supports and encourages me, to the couples who trust my vision and allow me into their lives to capture these incredible moments, and of course to so many industry friends who have been vulnerable and open with me, who have shared in my struggles and my successes. You are all why this has come to be...thank you all for giving me this.

 

For the full list of incredible photographers who were also selected: Rangefinder 30 Rising Stars

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ana + erick // chicago, illinois wedding

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ana + erick // chicago, illinois wedding

Last summer, I traveled to Chicago to document the story Ana + Erick's and their beautiful wedding day. At the time of their wedding, they had been long distance with Ana living in Montreal, and Erick living in Chicago. After three years of long distance, Ana finally was able to call Chicago home after their wedding. 

Ana and her bridesmaids wore greenery filled flower crowns and carried loosely-arranged bouquets by Foraged Floral. Their style was simple, understated elegance achieved with flowing gowns that felt refined yet effortless. I also loved that Ana had her maids in white; it was the right amount of different without being too much.

While Ana's style and taste is lovely, I think the melding of cultures in this wedding was particularly beautiful. Ana is Russian, and Erick Romanian, so many of their family members traveled from other parts of the world to celebrate with them. The entire day was filled with emotion and the love that was shared between them and their families was palpable. I absolutely love the vulnerability these two showed throughout the day with each other.

 

Here's to one of my favorite weddings from last year.

 

dress: Rosa Clara
florals: Foraged Floral
second shooter: O'Malley Marshall

 

 

 

 

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