I can’t tell you how much Arthur and Chelsea’s wedding reminded me of the one in the movie Father of the Bride. Everyone was getting ready at Chelsea’s home and the reception was held there, too. Chelsea’s dad was running around making sure everything was in the right place and I couldn’t help but think of Steve Martin getting ready for his daughter’s wedding. I had been to the Ferguson’s home for Arthur and Chelsea’s engagement session, and since then Chelsea’s parents had built a patio/dance floor, planted beautiful flowers all around and had everything ready for a gorgeous home wedding. The morning of the wedding day it was raining (nooooooo!) and plans quickly changed to include tents and to move the reception inside the Ferguson’s home. I don’t know how they pulled it off so well but it was amazing. Much thanks to the wedding coordinator and friend Ms. Dale for making this happen! And yet as it turns out, the rain stopped and we got a beautiful outdoor reception and dancing with the most amazing greenery backdrop and farm animals and even a few moments of sunshine.
It was so meaningful to see Chelsea getting ready and walking in the hallway between her parent’s room and her bedroom, filled with everything from her childhood. The hallway walls were decked with pictures of Chelsea and her sister, from their beanie baby phase to high school proms and pageants. I got a quick shot of Chelsea walking down the hall with childhood portraits next to her:)
One of Chelsea’s bridesmaids had the best idea of how to protect Chelsea’s dress from getting dirty from the wet ground- cutting a hole in a fitted sheet! Chelsea’s mom got a fitted sheet and the bridesmaids had a hole cut in the middle and Chelsea walked around with her feet through the sheet, holding the dress inside the sheet until we took pictures and hid it under her dress. By far the best idea I have seen yet for ways to get pictures outdoors while not getting her dress messed up! Check out this fabulous sheet picture below:)
Chelsea and Arthur got to ride in not one but two amazing cars- one from the church to the reception and one that they rode off on their honeymoon in. The first was an incredible Bel-Air in perfect condition, and the second was a orange (in honor of Auburn) convertible Corvette. These cars were so fun to photograph!
Arthur and Chelsea included both Jewish and Christian customs into their wedding ceremony. The Chuppah is the canopy they stood under, and is meant to represent the home the couple will build together. One really neat thing I read about the Chuppah is that this “home” doesn’t have furniture in it as a reminder that the basis of a home is the people in it and not the possessions inside of it. Also the canopy is meant to represent the presence of God over the covenant of marriage. How beautiful is that!!
Arthur and Chelsea were sent off with streamers and a police escort, including flashing lights and sirens so everyone in LaGrange would know there was a celebration. This was such a beautiful and meaningful wedding- I am so glad I got to be a part of it. Best wishes Mr. and Mrs. Zimmerman!
One of my favorite weddings to photograph was back in September for AJ + Jamie Fernandez (their wedding post was called “LoveFest 2012″ and I still think I should make them a t-shirt that says that:). They had so so many beautiful and personalized details in their day, including the invitations made by AJ’s talented sister Abby. I realized in talking with her that she designed and hand painted the invitation! I was so so impressed- the invitation really looked like a work of art. Clearly other people loved her work and asked her to make their invitations, and thus Consider The Lilies Paper Co. was started. Abby and her husband, Julian, live in Los Angeles but her work (which includes stationary, invitations, and other paper goods) can be purchased from her shop on Etsy. Her watercolor paintings are awesome- I think a custom painting would make an awesome wedding gift!
Here is Abby’s story on how she began her business:
“Consider The Lilies Paper Co. sprung from a love for art, color and making people happy. In 2011 when I was searching for my own wedding invitations I discovered some beautiful hand painted invitations, that of course, were way out of my budget. I knew if I was going to have the kind of invitations I wanted I was going to have to do them myself! And so it started… I designed my invitation suite and it ended up being featured on the Martha Stewart Weddings Blog! I was beside myself. A year later my now sister-in-law (Who’s wedding was photographed by the lovely Kaitie Bryant!) asked me to create her invitations as well. After that, people would make mention sometimes that I should start a business…and 8 months later Consider the Lilies Paper Co. was born (which I often refer to as CTL Paper, because it’s quite a mouthful). Currently I have greeting cards, 8×10 original art prints, invitations and other wedding stationary in my Etsy shop. I do offer some template style invitations, but my favorite is custom pieces. For each client I start from scratch with their colors, theme and vision and come up with a one of a kind piece just for them. Since I am well aware of the costs involved in weddings, I try to keep my prices affordable for those who, like me, want custom hand painted invitations without completely breaking the budget.
This Save the Date is such a great idea!
And this watercolor map? Love this big time.
I met Lauren and Matt through the NotWedding in Atlanta, and it turned out we had lots of mutual friends so I knew I’d like them. Matt and Lauren are super creative, owning their own custom letterpress company, Studio Four Three, in addition to Lauren being a photographer, too! Matt designed Woods’ birth announcement (picture above) including the family crest from his namesake. When I met up with them for a NotWedding event, Lauren was pregnant and she asked me to take photos of their baby boy once he was born. I had to tell her that I’m not really a baby photographer and make sure she would still want me to do it. I have friends who specialize in baby photography, and I can appreciate all the work and knowledge that goes into getting those images (i.e. how do they get the newborn to put both hands under their chin while the baby stays asleep?). My particular style is much more geared toward story telling, so any family pictures I take usually are in the context of an event or doing something. Lauren assured me she did want me to take them, and I’m so glad I did.
Judah Woods Robinson was born on April 1st. Lauren had a healthy and normal pregnancy, so it was a huge surprise to find out when Woods was born that he had some health problems and a chromosomal abnormality. Lauren and Matt had to leave their precious baby son at the hospital for 28 days and drive back and forth between their home and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. It was heartbreaking to read their updates on how they just wanted to take their son home to be with them. Woods had to undergo surgery for some stomach issues, and he was having seizures which are now under control with medication. He has been on a feeding tube but is making progress feeding on his own. I walked into Lauren and Matt’s home last week to take their pictures and just hugged Lauren. I watched Matt hold his precious son and play music to help him sleep from an iPhone in his shirt pocket. I saw the way they looked at Woods, and how they told me he was a gift and the most special baby.
Matt and Lauren were given lots of different scenarios about Woods’ health, but when I saw him he was doing well and strong. He is around 5 weeks old and can already roll over (a huge feat for an infant!). Lauren and Matt are believing in God’s goodness towards them and their baby. They are fighting for him in every way. Lauren told me how hard the past weeks have been and how long the days have felt in the hospital. Lauren and Matt value life so much, and this little life the most. They dote on him, the post pictures of him on Facebook with all his expressions, and have given themselves to him to be the parents he needs every hour. Lauren, you are a beautiful mom, and your fierce love for your child is amazing. Matt, you are a loving dad who I’ve seen dream big dreams for your little boy and fight for him. I hope you had a great mother’s day, Lauren. You are exactly what this precious boy needs.
Thanks you guys for inviting me into your home to document the new life in your world. Children are a gift from God, but they are a weighty gift. Being a mom requires you to sacrifice your body, your heart, your time, your nights and perfectly demonstrates the principal of death being at work in us but life at work in you (2 Corinthians 4:12). Lauren you are a beautiful mother who is making all of those sacrifices to be a mom, and Matt besides the carrying the baby and body part your sacrificial love is just as evident. And baby Woods is the benefactor of all these sacrifices, and I’m sure ironically he is the one blessing all those who come in contact with him and his story. I was so thankful to hold him and photograph him because it reminded me how sacred life is, how deep a mother and father’s love can go, and how we need to love and encourage each other through trying times. Truly baby Woods is stronger than oak.
This blog post has been a couple days in coming because there were just SO many pictures of this beautiful venue and couple to go through that I couldn’t narrow it down! More than grateful still doesn’t describe the opportunity I had to photograph Pamela and John’s wedding at the Metropolitan Building in New York City. Pamela contacted me back in November about being her wedding photographer after finding some of my work on Brooklyn Bride‘s blog. She wrote me an email telling me she loved my pictures, and was even more excited when she read about me and saw we shared a love for Chick-fil-a and Jesus. Pamela really wanted a photographer to capture the beauty of the venue but even more so who understood the significance of what was taking place, i.e. two people entering into a covenant of marriage before God and loved ones. She told me that and I couldn’t have felt more connected to what she was saying. I think that’s the biggest privilege of my job- I get to be a part of this really special day that is one of God’s greatest gifts to us.
About a month or so later I got email from a photographer in Brooklyn, Jamie Lefkowitz. Jamie had found my name on Brooklyn Bride and contacted me about shooting together not knowing I lived in Athens, GA. We talked and I told her about this wedding in Queens, and ironically she and her husband were married at the same Metropolitan Building. Jamie also photographed the wedding with me and Carrie Jo and she did an awesome job. It was so neat to see how one blog post could connect people! Big thanks to both Jamie and Carrie Jo for some of the images here.
The Metropolitan Building is this AMAZING old building in the midst of an industrial area of Queens. It is used for events and photo shoots, and is by far the most beautiful venue I have shot at. The window light is beautiful and floods each floor of the building, and the antique furniture is awesome enough to make Anthropologie a fan. Pamela and John were able to pick out furniture and any other items they wanted to use for their wedding from the amazing inventory. Below is a picture of the room of chairs they had—- gahhhhhhhhhhh…..
John bought one his favorite books, Pilgrim’s Progress, for each of his groomsmen. The best part was that he searched for old copies of it, and wrote a note to each groomsmen on the inside. The books had so much character, and I was impressed that each one was carefully searched for and picked out.
Pamela and John’s ceremony was what really stuck with me about the whole wedding. A close friend and mentor from John’s time at Princeton married them, and the ceremony was meaningful and beautiful. They chose two hymns for everyone to sing, and it was during the first one that my eyes just flooded with tears. It was the hymn “Come thou Fount,” written in the 1700s and definitely one of my favorites. There weren’t any instruments playing but just everyone’s voices filling up the room. It was during the singing that I had this deep sense of God’s presence and kindness in my life in a powerful way. I felt like God had given me this couple and wedding and trip to New York with one of my closest friends as a way to remind me that he loved me and that all of this was a gift. In a second there were a million thoughts in my head, including gratitude that God had given me a job that I love and that it was him that was bringing me to these places and getting to know these people. I know this is a super spiritual way of looking at photographing a wedding, but it was for real. I know the Lord had me their to remind me of his goodness towards me, especially for when I came back home to a life of diapers and dirty clothes and a seemingly endless lists of tasks to do. I stood with Pamela after the ceremony before we started family pictures and she thanked me for being here to celebrate and document this day. And I teared up again and had to tell her that this day was big for me too.
Pamela and John left the wedding in a vintage checkered taxi while guests waved goodbye with sparklers, which is a rare find in New York considering the state doesn’t allow the sale of fireworks. The sparklers had to bought in another state to be used there, which I thought was especially fun considering sparklers are a huge staple down south. They rode off to start their honeymoon in Paris the next day, which seems like such a magical way to spend your honeymoon. I am so so happy for you guys, so thankful you asked me to photograph your wedding, and so so grateful to God for the gifts that he gives us. I hope this day serves as a reminder of God’s kindness to both you two as a couple and to me for all the years to come…
I have a particular LOVE for people who are genuine and incorporate their genuine interests into their wedding day. I love when people show who they are and what they love because it feels right, not just trying to keep up with the latest trends. So when I realized how much Lindsey and Tony loved baseball (more specifically, the Atlanta Braves) and found ways to bring in Braves details to their wedding I knew I had found some genuine and fun people. And I was so impressed by all the little ways the Braves theme ran throughout the day! From the ring bearer baseball bowties to the Braves Jersey that guests signed, it was full of navy and red to make Bobby Cox proud.
These two are fun people. I realized how much so when I started taking their pictures and saw how many different facial expressions Lindsey could give the camera and how Tony was up for anything. And these two are people who love God and people- it was so clear to tell from their ceremony and reception. It was really neat to see them pray together after seeing each other for the first time. My awesome second shooter Steven and I left them alone for a few minutes but of course got a quick shot of them from the back of the chapel. We are photo snipers.
The whole bridal party was a really fun group, and the groomsmen were very much up for taking some bridesmaid type photos:) Love this.
A family friend of Tony’s owns this 1969 VW bug that they used to drive to the reception and take off for their honeymoon in. I couldn’t have been more excited to see this getaway car… this is the kind of car I would pick to drive off in! Or to just drive in general. The bug was complete with luggage racks and old luggage, the only thing missing was a surfboard:) If anyone is looking for a car to rent for their wedding and likes this, let me know and I can get you in touch with them!
Tony and Lindsey’s reception was at Reid Barn in Cumming, and there couldn’t have been a greener or more beautiful place for it. Outside was decorated with lights and Braves corn hole for guests to play, and the food was a perfect southern meal of BBQ and sweet potato casserole and everything else that makes a guest excited for the reception. Friends of the family help decorate the tables with old baseball trophies, vintage baseballs, tickets and candles and pictures of Lindsey and Tony playing on little league teams were attached to an old metal gate. This was done so so well- I loved that they really made it their own!
One last thought- Lindsey’s grandmother had to be the one of the best grandmothers I’ve encountered at a wedding. She had the moves to every song, including rap songs, and would give me the best facial expressions for pictures (clearly this runs in the family!). I had to include one shot of her because her dancing made my day.
THANKS a million for including me in your big day-I felt honored to capture it!