Archive: June 2009  |  View all recent posts
June 23, 2009  -  Engagements

kate + merritt

Kate contacted us recently about shooting her and Merritt's engagement photos - and she warned us, right off the bat, that Merritt doesn't smile for photos. He's a pretty funny guy - he's just got a very dry and deadpan sense of humor, but we still managed to sneak a couple smiles in!
Kate and Merritt got engaged at Delaware Park, so that's where we headed for their eshoot - right as we were starting, Shakespeare in Delaware Park started rocking Carmina Burana. So, that definitely set a nice, calm, romantic mood!
Yeah - that was a little weird, but nevertheless we wandered around shooting here and there. We really like the one stone bridge there in the park, so when we're there at a couples' request we use the bridge like crazy. It really breaks up the park, visually, and there's not a ton of foot traffic through there. If we're out in public shooting - and we always are- I think it helps relax everybody to keep things at least somewhat secluded for the first part of the shoot while we're getting used to working with each other.
I loved this one!
Merritt is not a smiley dude, but it works.
It does - admittedly. I was a little nervous going into this shoot, because it was our first time meeting Kate and Merritt. Normally, we've talked with a couple a bit and chatted in person or over Skype at a meeting for an hour or so, so we have a tiny little history to go off of, and I was nervous how they would work in front of the camera and in front of two people they'd never met, but they totally rocked it out!
So, Kate and Merritt are still trying to figure out where they'd like to get married - ideally, they want to have an outdoor tent and be able to sail away in their sailboat. Any of our fabulous readers have any ideas that fit the bill??
I absolutely love Kate's smile...
I really dig this one, Rich - might be my favorite you shot!
This is where Kate and Merritt got engaged so their only request was to take some here, by Hoyt Lake.
Thanks - I'm pretty simple-minded. I see a rock in the middle of a field, I put people on a rock in the middle of a field. Luckily, you're around for any other important decisions.
This is probably my favorite of the day - I absolutely loved that Kate chose that gorgeous coral dress to wear - she just popped out of the frame in every shot! And this tree was ridiculously cool to shoot under.
It looks surreal, like they're floating in the tree - pretty rad stuff. This was me at the willow tree. My favorite lens has a lot of natural light fall-off and vignetting at its widest aperture, I love being about to crank it on a wider-composed shot and let a couple really stand out. No post-processing other than channel-mixing to black and white.
Dude, I lied - this one's my favorite of the day.
This shot is ridiculous, Rich - you absolutely killed it!!! I like it so much, I want to add some more random exclamation points!!! So, we headed back into the park a bit and played around with these stairs for a few minutes - I really like this one.
Those shots are adorable :) My completely un-manly emoticons are my counterpoint to your excessive exclamation point use. We share an email address (, so I often wonder if people we're writing to are entirely sure of who is the one they're "speaking" with - so that's the clue, folks - I make a ton of random smileys like I'm a 14-year-old girl texting and Alyssa over-uses punctuation like a Strunk'n'White-toting 7th grade English teacher.
This is about the time it starting really threatening to the puddle shot was apropos.
And we totally finished our shoot, which made Kate and Merritt happy because they were on their way to dinner, and I totally restarted the shoot when we saw the rose garden was totally in bloom. Really, you can't walk past that, so we hung in there for a few minutes to finish up. Kate and Merritt, thank you guys so much for coming out and hanging with us - you guys were great, and I know your wedding is going to be amazing - regardless of where you have it! It's going to be a pretty spectacular day, so, again, congratulations!

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June 21, 2009  -  Weddings

erica + raymond

The first thing Erica said to us when we showed up to meet with her and her girls for their getting ready shots at Style Lab yesterday was that she was so excited for her turn on the blog. Nothing like starting the day out with a ton of pressure! Rich and I just spent the past hour narrowing our favorite 100 (on the first look, anyway!) down to a more manageable blog post of photos we absolutely love. And I really hope you (Erica!) love this post as much as we do! It was my first time in Style Lab, which is a super fun salon, and they rocked out the girls' hair. This was definitely not a hair technique I'd seen before, but it totally worked to smooth out her little fly aways!
Wait, who is that gorgeous bridesmaid getting her hair done? Why, it's Juli from last year's famous Mr. Softee wedding!
Then we headed over to the hotel to get her makeup and dress on - the gorgeous Maggie Sottero!
So, most brides are pretty unhappy when it rains on their wedding day, but Erica loves thunderstorms and wasn't even remotely bothered that it rained - it certainly helps that she had her ceremony in the Botanical Gardens (which is the best outdoor-looking interior ever!).
I'm sorry I've totally stolen this blog post from you, babe, but I've got a bit to say today! Erica and Ray are both designers, so their details were impeccable. They designed the invitations, programs and all the details for the day and KILLED it!
Dress on - stunning!!
Ray - don't take this as an to insult you and your guys, but your wife is way too good-looking and you and all totally lost blog real estate in a major way. I did take about ten ring shots and these too were my favorite from hanging out with you before the ceremony. And yes, Alyssa actually okay'd the Buffalo shot...
It was pouring rain hard enough by the time we got to the Botanical Gardens that the roof was leaking all over the place. Like you said, though, nobody minded at all and it actually kept the place from being to much of an oven - we love the gardens, but if you get in there on the wrong day during the summer it's got to hit the high 80s inside.
I LOVED this shot of one of the ring bearers - I cannot wait until Murphy has this smile. Ridiculously awesome!!
There were two ring bearers and a flower girl...and it's all fun and games until the two ring bearers team up to pummel the flower girl with the pillows. Awesome.
A few minutes later it was all good - you little guys did perfectly...definitely good mom-training involved here.
I get really happy when I get a good "father-of-the-bride hand-off" shot - especially since this is Father's Day and all.
The gardens is one of my favorite places to shoot - not only is the light in there absolutely gorgeous, but Mary and the staff set up such a perfect ceremony site.
That shot is the radness...
I also love the double-handhold first kiss...e + r, you guys looked amazing during the ceremony (and all day). It was short, sweet and very emotional...
We did their photos in the gardens (duh!), and they were so freakin cute together!
Maybe my favorite shot from the gardens...
...or maybe this one...
So, we headed over to the Lodge Auction House by trolley - I love this shot of yours, Rich!!
thanks :) check this out - brides looking for super cool, but simple ideas for a reception, this is a keeper. Erica set out a blank sketch book and a bunch of crayons and markers. I looked through it a few times as it got filled up over the course of the evening and there was some really fun, colorful stuff in there (strangely, the drawing did not improve as the guests' inebriation increased).
The day went by so quickly - and I think both Erica and Ray were pretty ready to get to their killer party. I loved this shot of them coming in, so super relaxed and clearly thrilled to have just been married.
We didn't even pimp out the location! You hear, "Lodge Auction House," and you don't know what to think (or maybe you do, I guess) but what it is is an old Masonic Temple/Lodge. I mean, Ray said it best, "I can't believe we get to have our reception in a place that people like us (i..e. non-Masons) were never even supposed to see. We look like kings and queens in here." I agree, the place is amazing to shoot in - definitely a recommendation for us from here on in.
Okay, I lied, maybe this is my favorite photograph I took last night :).
So what gets me more excited than capturing a flash? Getting TWO guests' flashes!! I don't know - I love these shots, and I love to blog them, but I worry that our blog followers are getting sick of seeing them? Should I back off the flash shots for a while, guys?? Let me know what you think!
Love this, Rich!
Thanks - another nod to all the bad-ass dads out there :)
Success! And then there was a TON of dancing. Having the world's smallest dance floor did not deter anyone - and can you guys feel your legs today or what? I'm sore as heck!!
That is one hot photographer!! (And Willie - look at you - no wonder you knocked that guy down with one jab in your boxing match! You're three feet taller than everyone else alive!)
I think there were a few people at the wedding who were feeling it a little this morning, but none more than these two...
Sometimes, you just don't want your grandmother knowing what your friends REALLY think about poor Caroline.
That shot is amazing. Nothing says generational clash than a bride being absolutely mortified by what her guests are yelling as an addition to classic Neil Diamond. I know I'll never hear that song the same way again.
I don't even know where this hat came from, but it's SWEET!!
It was the overly-hip bartender's I think...and I'm pretty sure it took a Justin Timberlake song to get it on the groom's head. Oh, and beer. Seriously, guys - we had a heck of day shooting with you. You hard an incredibly personal wedding on a grand scale - that's a tough thing to balance but it rocked so, so hard. We're so happy and insanely lucky to get to work with people like you and your families and friends. Have a killer time on your honeymoon down by mile zero and have a couple for us :)!

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