Learning the stories of husbands and wives-to-be is a huge part of what I do as a wedding photographer. In fact, I think it’s essential! Hearing stories and history gives me an important window into the bride and groom’s personalities, which in turn helps guide the way I take their photos. It’s been awhile since I’ve had the pleasure of working with high school sweethearts. So getting to spend time with Steph and Tim during our recent engagement session…and learning their story was wonderful!
These two are so much fun! I loved hearing that they went to prom together, and stayed close throughout their time in college. Last summer, after attending ten weddings (yes, you read that right, ten!!), Steph and Tim decided to get away to Costa Rica to celebrate some well-deserved time alone. But escaping the wedding theme just wasn’t in the cards! On their second day in Puerto Viejo, they were enjoying lunch at their beachside hotel when the waiter put down a little something extra with Steph’s plate…a ring! In short order, Tim was down on one knee and they both knew that they had at least one more wedding in their future!
They decided on White Stone, Virginia for the session location, because it’s where Steph and Tim love to spend weekends. They’ve been going there since they were both 19! I could see the true joy in their eyes, being together in a place that’s meant so much to them over the years. They make each other laugh so much and have such great chemistry, it was a delight to photograph them! Steph has an adorable and inspiring cooking blog that you should definitely check it out, it is called The Chaotic Kitchenette! Below is a sneak peek of their lovely morning engagement session!
White Stone VA Wedding Photographer
And the songbirds are singing like they know the score
And I love you, I love you, I love you like never before
–Christine McVie (Fleetwood Mac)
Falling in love is exciting, thrilling, like nothing else. But if you ask me, one of the best parts of finding true love is the quiet sense of peace it brings; the knowledge that you’ve found your other half and the rest of your life can finally begin. It’s like coming home…where you truly belong. The tune ‘Songbird’, with its graceful piano and the lilting voice of Christine McVie, perfectly captures the essence of a forever romance. And I can’t help but think this song fits Meghan and Zack. Maybe that’s because I happen to know they both love Fleetwood Mac. 🙂
Zack proposed to Meghan under the trees at the Battery in Charleston, South Carolina. It was New Year’s Eve, and he’d surprised her with a stop on the way to dinner. The Battery is such a beautiful place…and doubly meaningful because it’s where Meghan’s father had proposed to her mother nearly 31 years before. So very special! And I’m guessing that Meghan’s dad approved. Apparently, very early on in Meghan and Zack’s courtship, her dad confided to her mom that these two were ‘made for each other’. It definitely shows. Their common goals of becoming doctors (they met in medical school) and their kind, generous natures are clearly a perfect fit. Plus, Meghan has one of the most beautiful, strong Southern accents I’ve ever had the pleasure of hearing…and Zack loves it too!
Our recent engagement session started in the afternoon at Goose Creek State Park. We eventually made our way to the waterfront docks in downtown Washington, NC. The lighting throughout was just amazing…and at the end we were treated to an absolutely gorgeous sunset. A perfect way to wrap things up! Enjoy these photos from their lovely engagement session. I can’t wait for their big day!
I absolutely love their outfits, so perfect for both locations. Look at that Meghan’s beautiful dress with pockets!
Washington NC Engagement Photos
Occasionally I’ll wait to post about a wedding, for one reason or another. But the time has finally come to tell you about Lindsay and Robert’s beautiful day! I’d also like to use this post to talk about Southern wedding ideas. As a wedding photographer working in the Southeast, I’m lucky to be a part of so many gorgeous Southern-styled ceremonies and celebrations. To me, two things that make a Southern wedding truly stand out are a focus on location, and attention to detail. It can be easy to generalize, to get lost in the ‘genre’ of Southern weddings. The key, of course, is to be specific to who you are as a couple. To incorporate special touches that are significant to the two of you, and to generously consider your guests’ experience. Lindsay and Robert did just that.
After initially planning to marry in the town where Robert proposed, Lindsay experienced a change of heart. All of a sudden, she knew deep down that it was important to marry Robert in the town where they’d both grown up: Waycross, Georgia. Changing the location meant that the ceremony could take place in the First Presbyterian Church where Lindsay’s family had always been parishioners and which features woodwork her grandpa built by hand in his millwork shop at Satilla Sash and Door. The guests who lived in Waycross knew and deeply felt this history; those from out of town reveled in learning it. The welcome bags incorporated Robert’s favorite childhood snack, and water from the local community museum, a unique invitation for guests to experience the town Lindsay and Robert both love so well.
Lindsay was absolutely radiant coming down the aisle. In her bouquet she tucked lockets from both grandmothers, and she held her dad’s handkerchief. Her jewelry was a stunning mix of pieces borrowed from her bridesmaid and her mom…pieces that had been handed down through generations. Her veil was hand-made by her mom…with her dad’s help! So very sweet! The groom wore cufflinks that had belonged to his maternal grandfather and a watch borrowed from his father. Magnolias (which are all over Waycross, and even in Lindsay’s childhood backyard!) were a big part of the floral arrangements. Such a perfect Southern touch…with real meaning to this bride and groom.
And the reception! It took place in Waycross City Auditorium, and it was so much fun! Lindsay and her dad absolutely lit up the floor with their first dance! I was able to capture the bride’s mother and aunt watching, and Lindsay very graciously expressed how much she liked that photo. The whole experience was such a pleasure and a treat. It was like Lindsay and Robert opened a door into a magical room that held all of the things they love most about their town and each other…and invited all of their guests in. Truly a Southern wedding to remember.
Thanks Angelita Esparar for shooting this wedding with me and for being wonderful to work with
Ceremony Venue: First Presbyterian Church of Waycross / Reception Venue: Historic Waycross City Auditorium / Bride’s Wedding Dress: Pronovias / Shoes: Jimmy Choo / Hair & Makeup: Emma Collins Beauty / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Dessy / Groom’s Attire: Sebastian Grey / Groomsmen’s Attire: The Black Tux / Engagement Ring & Wedding Bands: James & Co. / Ceremony & Bridal Party Flowers: Natalie’s Florist / Reception Flowers & Catering: Straton Hall Events / Invitations: Grammarcy Fine Papers / Music: Surrell Zeigler; Jessica Adams Moore; The Buzzcatz / Cake: Anne Deal / Rentals: Kirby Rentals
Recently I found myself at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh, camera in hand. I was there to meet Kelly and Drew for their engagement session (it’s where Drew proposed). It’s always exciting to shoot in a new and different location, especially one that’s meaningful to my clients. But the thing that struck me most was not the modern architecture or the towering globe sculpture…it was the fact that the bride-to-be biked there in a gorgeous silk skirt and heels! Now that’s impressive!
Kelly and Drew met in dental school, and have been together for a little more than three years. Kelly says she had no idea Drew was going to propose…and when he did, it was with a beautiful yellow-gold engagement ring that he designed himself! I love gold engagement rings. I don’t see them very often, and the one Drew created was so unique with an elegant, timeless feel to it. Five minutes into our session, I could tell these two would be a breeze to photograph. They are so comfortable with one another, just talking and laughing…it’s kind of like they share their own special language. 🙂 And Kelly has a great sense of style! I absolutely loved her outfits!
The second part of our session included the couple’s pups, Finley and Penny! Finley is a handsome Golden Retriever (you know that’s my breed!) and belonged to Drew before they met. Kelly came into the relationship with Penny the Cockapoo. The pups get along very well, but guess who’s the boss between them? Penny! Ha! I am honored that I’ll be photographing the upcoming wedding and I look forward to working with A Southern Soiree again! What a treat! Enjoy this selection from our session…it was not easy to pick my favorites!
Downtown Raleigh Engagement Photos
What a pleasure it was to spend a recent afternoon with Libby and Will for their engagement session. These two are kindness personified and so lovingly supportive of one another. Watching them together, I got the sense of a beautiful future unfolding for them. They share so much…their faith, their values, their love of family (and mutual desire for a family of their own). And they’ve already started on that journey with their one year old Brittany Spaniel called Penny (aka ‘Penny, the girl’! So sweet!).
Will proposed on their year-and-a-half anniversary. He recreated their very first date, taking Libby to dinner at the same restaurant in Colonial Williamsburg, where they sat at the very same table! Afterwards, they strolled down Duke of Gloucester street just as they had 18 months before. But this time Will was very quiet…so quiet that Libby thought he might be upset about something! (She couldn’t have been more wrong!) Finally, she suggested Will take her home, and he obligingly turned around. But they didn’t get far before he overcame his nerves and told her loved her…then got down on one knee in front of Governor’s Palace and popped the question! Suddenly, it all made sense…and there was a beautiful emerald ring on Libby’s finger to boot!
Photographing them was a joy…they are adorable together, very giggly and sweet. Penny’s photogenic side came out in all its glory, too! We had a great time strolling through Waller Mill Park and downtown Williamsburg together. Special thanks to Will’s mom Margaret, who came to the session to help take care of Penny. I wish this growing family all the best and am so happy for them! I can’t wait for their wedding in July!
Williamsburg Engagement Photos