woodsy

OLIVIA + ABDOULAYE // A WOODLAND ELOPEMENT IN NORTHERN MICHIGAN

 

This is not the first time that I’ve written about this, but I’ll say it again. I love when couples create a wedding for themselves. They create it to be about the two of them and who they are as a couple. They incorporate the traditions that they want to, let other ones go, and build new ones together. This wedding was a creative expression of who Olivia & Abdoulaye are and I couldn’t love it more. It was truly an honor to be a part of the small group that ventured into Hartwick Pines last Tuesday.

Tuesday Afternoon by The Moody Blues played as Olivia & Abdoulaye walked through the woods to their ceremony site so I’ll just leave a snippet of lyrics here for you before you see what we captured:

Tuesday afternoon
I'm just beginning to see
Now I'm on my way
It doesn't matter to me
Chasing the clouds away

Something calls to me
The trees are drawing me near
I've got to find out why
Those gentle voices I hear
Explain it all with a sigh

I'm looking at myself, reflections of my mind
It's just the kind of day to leave myself behind
So gently swaying through the fairy-land of love
If you'll just come with me you'll see the beauty of

Tuesday afternoon
Tuesday afternoon

 

AN EXTENDED FAMILY PORTRAIT SESSION AT CAMP MICHIGANIA // WALLOON LAKE, MICHIGAN

 

This seems to be a year of former wedding clients reaching out about family portraits, and I'll tell ya what: I'm 100% ok with that.  I was basically jumping for joy to hear from Kendall about setting up a session with her extended family while they were vacationing at Camp Michigania on Walloon Lake.  I've followed along with Kendall, Tim & Ellie on social media since their wedding and I've also run into her mom at a number of local events here in TC.  This family has the best sense of humor and their laugher was contagious.  Given they don't all live in the same place anymore you could just tell how precious this time together was.  My job is just the best - I'm so grateful for families like these.

 

JOHN, JULIE & JACK // NORTHERN MICHIGAN FAMILY PHOTOGRAPHER

 

Does it get cuter than this?!  No, my friends.  No it does not.

Julie and John's riverside wedding was one of the first weddings I photographed the year that we moved back to Michigan.  5 years has passed, which is just super hard to believe!  Now they have a sweet little one, Jack, and last week we spent a few hours exploring the family property along the AuSable River in Grayling.  This property was where Julie and John got married - his family has been coming here for generations.  They were so happy to just spend some time doing simple things: playing the banjo, hanging out with cousins, and enjoying Northern Michigan as a family (with their three dogs of course!). It couldn't have been more fun or more special to reconnect with them. 

 

MAURELLA & TEDDY // A SUMMERTIME BACKYARD WEDDING IN ANN ARBOR

 

There is nothing quite like getting married in a place so personal that all of your family heights have been recorded on the inside of the doorframe.  Childhood portraits line the walls.  Your sister was married in the backyard years earlier and today you see your niece and nephew running around on that same lawn.  Now you're marrying the love of your life there - telling jokes in your vows, cutting a cake that your mother-in-law made with painstaking care, eating tacos from your favorite restaurant, having a great friend DJ.  For Maurella that fairytale came true on Saturday.  Teddy and Maurella wrote the most personal vows and danced the night away under the stars.  It was truly a pleasure and we were privileged to be a part of it.  I hope you were taking those mental snapshots all day, but I sincerely hope these photos help you remember even more.

Wedding Coordination: Crystal Broome // Hair & Makeup: Christy Lindsey // Florist: Enchanted Florist // Rentals: A1 Rental // Catering: Maiz // DJ: DJ Joey P // Dessert: Teddy's Mom (Queen of Hearts Bakery) // Bride's attire: Mimi's Bridal // Groom's attire: President Tuxed

 

REBECCA & JON // SOJOURN LAKESIDE RESORT WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY // GAYLORD, MI

 

At the beginning of the day Jon's mom gave Becky a mercury dime from 1944 to put in her shoe.  The dime had belonged to Jon's grandfather.  Later during the reception, Jon's parents told them that September 16th was actually the same day that his grandparents were married in 1944, which they hadn't realized before!  I just loved this sweet element of their day.  These little things that make everyone's wedding day truly unique.  AND, who would have guessed that we'd have a stretch of 80 degree weather in September?!  I certainly hadn't expected it, but it turned out beautifully.  Sojourn is one of those magical places with an up north - woodsy - summer camp - vibe that can still be as elegant or as rustic as you choose.  It's a stunning location and a perfect place to spend one of the last warm weekends of the year.  Cheers to Becky & Jon!

Venue: Sojourn Lakeside Resort, Coordinator: Joy Volant, Hair & Makeup: The Beauty Gals, Florist: Bride, DJ & Violin: Rodney Page, Caterer: BJ's Catering, Dessert: Kim's, Bride's Attire: Jim Hjelm by Hayley Paige, Groom's Attire: J. Barbaro, Photo & Video help by the awesome Sawyer Harris & Dustin Stockel - Stay tuned for Becky & Jon's video!

 

KENDALL & JIM // EMPIRE MICHIGAN WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY

 

My oh my.  What a day in Northern Michigan.  Kendall and Jim were married on a bright, sunny day in Empire.  Their laughter was contagious, they shot confetti canons during their entrance to the reception, the toasts were that perfect blend of emotional and funny, and Jim had the sweetest first dance with his mom - literally with her barefeet standing on his shoes.  Cheers to Kendall & Jim!  And I'll leave you with this quote from the back of their dinner menu:

"It's a great place to laze around and swim and fish when you want to.  And the best place in the world to do nothing.  It is beautiful country... and nobody knows about it but us." -Ernest Hemingway

Planning & Coordination: Sincerely, Ginger Weddings & Events, Hair & Makeup: Pavlova Salon & Spa, Florist: BLOOM, Tent & Rentals: American Rentals, Transportation: Blue Lakes By The Bay, Caterer: The Cook's House, Cake: Aunt B's Cakes & Desserts, Cake Topper: CFWeddings, DJ: Mr. Music, Bride's attire: Bridal Boutique of Naperville & BHLDN, Groom's attire: Nicholas Joseph, Videography: The Compass Points Here - coming soon!  Photo and Video help from these fantastic folks: Hallie Kohler & Sawyer Harris.

 

COURTNEY // TRAVERSE CITY MATERNITY PHOTOGRAPHY

I have been friends with Courtney since the fourth grade - the days of juggling soccer balls in the basement and putting on impromptu fashion shows down the hallways.  Being able to watch her begin this new phase of life called motherhood, fills me with happiness.  Seriously, pregnancy really suits her.  I feel honored to capture this incredibly special part of her life.  Photographing people makes me feel connected to them and if I already feel connected, it makes that feeling even richer.  I love you Courta.

 
 

STYLED SHOOT COLLABORATION // WOODLAND INSPIRED WITH BERRY TONES

I haven't done any styled bridal shoots before, so this was kind of out of the box for me!  It was a fun change of pace and I had a fabulous time collaborating with On-Site Bridal, To Have and To Hold, model Hannah Burdek, and Stems & Sprigs.  Brenda from On-Site Bridal developed the look and styling for the shoot - deep berry tones, gold, and candles in a forested setting.  The images are darker than a lot of my typical work, which again was a fun direction for me.  There are more to come, but in the meantime check out the images below!