“Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.”
(Wildlife Photographer & Preservationist)
Meeting clients who dote on their animals as much as I dote on my golden retriever Ronon is always a pleasure. And that pleasure is easily doubled when the couples’ pup is included in their wedding! Last Saturday I had the great good fortune to be Cara and Trey’s wedding photographer, and their black lab Luna (whom they call their “puppy-daughter”) was a huge part of the festivities on their day! What a treat for me and everyone else too!
Luna is one of the sweetest, most well-behaved pups I have ever met! She walked down the aisle with Cara’s maid of honor Brittney, and got a huge dose of love from everyone present! The happy grin on Luna’s face showed all day long how full of love and life she is…but I think that’s to be expected, considering how kind and generous her parents are. Cara is one of the most genuinely sweet brides I have ever worked with, she and Trey took the time to talk to each and every one of their guests and make them feel special. Cara’s emotion during the ceremony was so beautiful to see. And her Hayley Paige striped dress was completely unique! I am such a sucker for stripes, and this flowing gown was a great combination of elegance and fun!
The ceremony and reception took place at the Deep Run Hunt Club in Virginia, and we had the most beautiful weather for an outdoor wedding! This location was new to me, and it had some serious rustic charm. It was perfect for Cara and Trey and their puppy-daughter, just about half an hour away from where the bride and groom first met at Randolph-Macon College. I love it when couples keep their celebration in their community, it can mean so much to them and their family and friends. I wish Cara, Trey and Luna all the best, and hope you enjoy this sneak peak of their gorgeous outdoor Virginia wedding!
Richmond wedding photographer
Thanks Sarah Der for shooting this wedding with me and for being wonderful to work with! I love the photos you took!
Ceremony and reception location: Deep Run Hunt Club / Coordinator: Make It Posh Events / Florist: Petals and Twigs / Stationary: English Tea Paperie / Cake Artist: Sweet Fix Bakery Catering: A Sharper Palate / Ceremony music: Belle Arte String Quartet / Reception music: Klaxton Brown Band / Make-up: Zoe Shebelski with Bobbi Brown / Hair: Rachel Jones with Aveda / Wedding Dress: Hayley Paige from Annalise Bridal Boutique / Shoes: J. Crew / Bridesmaids dress: Alfred Sung / Groom and Groomsmen’s attire: Calvin Klein / Custom wooden bench: Lazy Guy DIY / Alterations: Claudia Villegas with Seams Alterations
Finding “The One” feels a lot like coming home. And home, of course, is the place where we can truly be ourselves. At home we can say whatever we feel without fear of judgment. We feel calm and like our best selves there. Home is the best place to be. And it’s exactly where Camille and Bryan are when they’re together…and does it show! The love they have for one another seems to spill over and touch everyone around them. So it was an absolute joy and privilege to photograph their wedding!
Given how at home they are with one another, I think it’s a funny twist that Camille was initially hesitant (even nervous!) to meet Bryan. Their first connection was on Match.com…they set up a date through the site. But Camille got cold feet and canceled! Luckily, Bryan was persistent and when Camille finally agreed to meet, they both fell hard and fast! But Camille wasn’t the only one head-over-heels for Bryan, her Shar-Pei Kai hopped in his lap on their second date and wouldn’t leave him alone! These three have been inseparable ever since! So when Bryan proposed with the biggest diamond ring I’ve seen, Camille’s response was an immediate “Yes!” Afterwards, they drove to Bryan’s grandparents’ home and danced in the driveway to share the news. So, so sweet!
Both the wedding and reception took place at The Umstead Hotel and Spa. The space was absolutely beautiful, such a classic and elegant décor and the perfect coordination and design by A Southern Soiree. This is the second time I’ve worked with Gina, and I cannot say enough about her. She’s so talented, organized and calm…the day went by without a hitch! That also had a lot to do with Camille and Bryan themselves. I truly believe that the atmosphere of a wedding starts with the bride and groom, they were kind to all their vendors and so enjoyed the company of their loved ones. It had been a long time since Camille’s extended family had all been together in one place, and they were so happy! I felt so welcomed by all the family and friends in attendance. At one point, I found myself talking with the groom’s mom, and she said something that really rang true: “Camille is such a genuine person.” Yes, she is! And Bryan’s mom had hit the nail on the head about why I was loving working with her. Camille and Bryan are both truly genuine, and truly at home with one another…so it’s easy to feel at home with them! Enjoy this sneak peak of their beautiful day.
The Umstead Wedding
Thanks Jamie Vinson for shooting this wedding with and for being wonderful to work with!
Planning and design: A Southern Soiree / Venue, cake and catering: The Umstead Hotel & Spa / Florist: Fresh Affairs / Stationary: Maria Scheel Invitations / Calligraphy by Carrie / Make-up: Natural Beauties by Vee / Hair: Toria’s Hair Essentials / Wedding Dress: Liancarlo from Alexia’s Bridal Boutique / Veil: Alencon Lace Mantilla Elbow Length Veil from Etsy / Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Bridesmaids dress: White by Vera Wang / Rentals: CE Rental / Ice cream: Andia Ice Cream
One of the things I love about being a wedding photographer is spending time in the company of people who are flying high on love. If I am having a less-than-perfect week, all it takes is one couple making each other laugh, looking into each other’s eyes…and suddenly the rain clouds disappear! I feel so grateful that I get to be a part of their lives for one moment, so grateful that they are sharing their connection with me and my camera. So I know I am in the right line of work! And I know that working with people as open, kind and passionately in love as Allison and Paul is a huge gift!
These two have one of the strongest connections I have ever seen. When I plan an engagement session with clients, I usually suggest they select no more than two locations, as moving a lot can break the flow. But this didn’t apply in the least to Allison and Paul. The day we were at Duke Gardens there were a lot of visitors, so we had to stop and start many times. Each time we jumped back in, it was seamless…because of their connection. They have so much love for one another and so much love for life! Spending time with them was exactly what I needed on that particular day. 🙂
These two met at Fullsteam Brewery in Durham in the spring of 2015. On the same night, their mutual friend Amanda (who is also Paul’s pastor and will be marrying them!) had a sudden epiphany that they might be a perfect match…and they soon agreed! Before long, thoughts of marriage were in the air. So when Paul proposed a weekend trip to New York City to visit friends, Allison guessed that a different kind of proposal might be in the works! What she didn’t know was that Paul had already spoken with her parents and obtained her grandmother’s wedding band. On the second day of their stay, they walked the High Line together. Just as they neared the end, Paul asked the question!
But here’s the extra magical part: years earlier, Allison had mentioned to her parents that she would love to be proposed to on the High Line some day. And Paul had no knowledge of that conversation…it was amazing!
I know their wedding will be one for the books. I spoke to Allison’s mother before our session, and there was so much joy in her voice! I look forward to meeting her in person, as well as the rest of this couple’s family and friends, of which there are many! I could not be more grateful and delighted to be their wedding photographer! Below is a sneak peek of their engagement session.
What could be better than marrying someone you trust, someone you can talk to about anything…someone who is your best friend? Joanne and Nate met years ago, and bit by bit developed a friendship that would change both of their lives forever! It all started with a fateful 2009 car trip to Washington D.C. Nate needed a ride, and although they were barely acquaintances, Joanne stepped up to the plate. Despite I-95 traffic, time flew by with good conversation and definite chemistry! The attraction was there, but the timing was not…yet. 🙂 Over the next four years they became friends. Best friends. And one day, everything just fell into place. The timing was finally right! And the romance that blossomed was stronger and deeper than either of them imagined could be possible. Now they are husband and wife!
Joanne and Nate love spending time in Chapel Hill, so it was absolutely fitting that their wedding and reception took place at Chapel of the Cross and The Carolina Inn, respectively. The Carolina Inn is such a timeless hotel and I love photographing there. Joanne was beautiful in her Pronovias wedding gown and cathedral veil. The color palette of this wedding was especially pretty, with the bridesmaids in soft, flowing light blue dresses. A perfect choice for a late spring southern wedding! Joanne and Nate really enjoyed all of their guests, and at the reception they had an absolute blast on the dance floor!
I have to take a moment to say how much I loved working with Tia from Erin McLean Events. She had a smile on her face the whole time…so cheerful and organized. It’s always a pleasure to work alongside someone who enjoys what they do as much as Tia does. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that we get to work together again in the near future!
I hope you enjoy this selection of photos from Joanne and Nate’s day. And Joanne and Nate: I wish you two the very best in this new chapter!
Wedding at the Carolina Inn
Thanks Jamie Vinson for shooting this wedding with me!
Ceremony: The Chapel of Cross / Reception: Carolina Inn / Coordination: Erin McLean Events / Florist: Serendipity Designs / Stationary: Minted / Cake Artist: Ashley Cakes / Catering: The Carolina Inn / Reception music: KM DJ Company / Hair and Make-up: The Makeup Culture / Wedding Dress: Pronovias / Veil: Custom veil, designed by Olga’s Bridal and Formal Couture Shoes: Stuart Weitzman / Bridesmaids dress: Dessy Group / Groom’s attire: Hugo Boss / Transportation: EcoStyle
Sometimes love is worth waiting for. In fact, I think it’s always worth waiting for…but that can be easier said than done! Brittney and Kevin met in a mathematics class their very first year of college. She noticed him right away. But it would be another four years before they started dating! Now, six years beyond that, they stand in front of my camera laughing and holding hands. A beautiful couple…who are about to become husband and wife!
Our recent engagement session took place in Richmond. We had to reschedule a couple of times due to weather, but I’m so glad we did. We ended up with a gorgeous day and amazing light…and Brittney and Kevin’s adorable ‘kids’ Mags and Shae were able to come along too! Including pups in a session is always a welcome treat for me. 🙂 Mags is nine and came into the relationship with Brittney. She is a love bug who adores hugs and kisses, and likes to lean on you to get close and snuggly! Shae (who is two) is obviously the younger sibling, she’s very into her tennis ball right now! The pups enjoyed exploring Monument Avenue as we strolled. And Brittney looked so pretty in her red lace dress! This was a perfect, bright choice for the engagement session; it really stood out against the stone wall of the Carillon at Byrd Park.
The wedding is set for New Year’s Eve at the Jefferson Hotel, and I am already looking forward to it! As a Virginia wedding photographer, I love exploring and working in the historic landmarks of the state. I can’t wait to see Brittney looking stunning (as she no doubt will!) against the dramatic, classical backdrop of the Jefferson. Such a pleasure getting to know this couple! I hope you enjoy this sneak peak of their engagement session…
Richmond engagement photos