The longer I have been a wedding photographer, the more I have come to realize that I’m really here for the marriage. I’ve talked about this many times, but as much as I love the details and the party and the flowers, I love the couple more. I love that they’re making an enormous commitment to each other. I love their relationship with their family and friends. I love that they’re saying “yep, I realize that we both have flaws but we’re gonna stick together on this ride”. I just love that I get to play a small part in capturing that. And ya wanna know the best part of reframing my job as a “marriage photographer”? I get to work with people for years. Sometimes I get the privilege of being asked to photograph their life again. At a sibling's wedding. For an updated couples session. Or for a baby. Kathy & Simon, I am SO happy that I got to see you and meet sweet Brian. This session made my heart so happy - I am very grateful. Cheers to this random Tuesday!
In 2015, our family spent Christmas together in Santa Fe, New Mexico. I had briefly been through New Mexico on a road trip when I was 10 years old, but other than that I had no real knowledge of the area. I didn’t know what to expect, and I certainly didn’t predict that the landscape would captivate me as much as it did. I think about this trip often. I can’t even fully explain it. As I walked through Bandelier National Monument, there was just something so overwhelmingly powerful and beautiful about it. The colors of the rock and moss and cactus against the overcast Winter sky were creating the most incredible color palette. The evidence of human presence in the region that goes back at least 11,000 years. The way the rock became large scale abstract sculpture - some carved by humans and some carved by wind and rain and time. Between our time spent here, as well as exploring the food and art and textures in the area, it was a trip I’ll never forget and a place that I hope we are lucky enough to visit again.
These are just some of the images from this trip, and they make up this week’s “From the Archives” post.
We fit Megan & Mike’s session into this perfect pocket of time - We were able to capture tons of late fall color before all of the leaves fell, as well as the icy blues of Lake Michigan. Mike proposed to Megan out at Empire Bluff, so it was extra special for them to have their photos taken here. To me it doesn’t get much better than hiking around this magical landscape with clients. Especially clients who are outdoorsy, and fun, and make the occasional goofy face at each other. AND I’m obsessed with Megan’s sweater poncho, so we’re basically destined to be best friends. I hope you’re enjoying this late Fall season as much as I am. Stay cozy my friends.
Engagement sessions with me are kind of evolving into hikes or walks - exploring new spaces and lighting. Adventuring with couples for a couple hours. Taking time to wander and taking in this f-ing magical Northern Michigan landscape. Reflecting on it now, it really is a great fit for our brand. I'm looking for people who are open to this; Morgan and Nathan were perfect. We laughed, we hiked up dunes, explored the woods looking for glowy strands of light. Their wedding in August is going to be a beauty - I can't wait.
We have had some ridiculously unusual weather here in Northern Michigan. 50+ degrees in February is bonkers. But a definite upside to all of this sunshine is the glowing light and bright snow during engagement sessions! Kathy and Simon wanted an outdoorsy session that would include their pups - love it. I had a blast and we can't wait for their Winter wedding next year!