Lizz + Sam

Lizz and Sam had a picture-perfect September wedding day this past weekend.
Sam had given Lizz two weddings rings to be worn above and below her engagement ring. They were beautiful, as was Lizz’s bouquet.
Lizz and her mom have a quiet moment before the ceremony while the flower girls are hard at work.
Lizz and her daughter share a veil and a kiss.
The first hints of fall color as friends and family gather for the ceremony.

Sam sees Lizz in her dress for the first time.
One of Lizz’s daughters welcomes her to the ceremony.

Lizz and Sam celebrate with their first kiss as husband and wife.
An emotional group hug.

And, not to be outdone, Sam gets a plank from the bridal party.

Lizz and Sam take a few minutes for themselves as they head up to the reception.

There were a lot of children and there was a lot of room to run, play and explore.
Lizz and Sam’s first dance.

Sam dances with his mom.
Then all kinds of parents started popping up.
Lizz’s dance with her dad.

Lizz’s dress was simply beautiful, as were her purple glitter sneakers.
We took some time after dinner to do some portraits in the soft evening light.

Congratulations Lizz and Sam! It was a delight for Leslie and me to be with you on your wedding day!

Amanda + Zack

Amanda and Zack’s engagement session started at a neighbor’s pond in a gentle rain.
They were unfazed by the rain, which fortunately only lasted a few minutes.
My goal in an engagement session is to convey the personality of the couple’s relationship. Amanda and Zack’s relationship is marked by genuine laughter, intimacy, and an ease in being together.

Engagement sessions usually last about two hours, and the time flies by as we travel to different locations and do wardrobe changes. Here we’re outside our Guilford studio.

The sun comes out just in time to get some of Amanda’s favorite backlit images.

One of our barns faces north and it’s our favorite place to get soft natural light portraits.

These two are wonderful together. I love the bliss in this image.
We did a series of intimate studio portraits to convey that aspect of their relationship as well as to show off their beautiful tattoos.

We ended up with over 150 selected images from our two hours together!
Congratulations you two! Leslie and I are really looking forward to photographing your wedding next week!

Belleza en las Ruinas

This is something Leslie and I love: working with a gifted model in an intriguing location with beautiful light.
When we learned that we would be visiting an historic hacienda during our trip to Mexico for the wedding of our dear friends Calvin and Andrea, our first thought was: let’s find a model who will love and understand this decaying mansion.
With the help of the Santa Fe Photographic Workshops and local talent scout Paul Rodriguez, we were introduced to Elsa (pronounced EALzah), who turned out to be the perfect accomplice for creating these images.
Elsa is a ceramicist living in San Miguel de Allende who loves modeling and was quick to understand our vision for these beauty in the ruins images. Leslie did an entirely separate set of amazing images, which I hope she’ll share in a future blog.
The mansion, which is the centerpiece of a sprawling estate granted by the King of Spain in 1774, was the largest in Mexico. Once owned by the wealthiest person in the country, it is now slowly going back to the earth.
Yet its original beauty is still hauntingly evident. The peeling French wallpaper, the tattered silk ceilings, and the fading frescoed walls hint at its past elegance.
When we first arrived, Elsa, Leslie and I went off in different directions exploring the place (which was huge—we spent an afternoon there and never got into all the rooms).
We were looking for intriguing locations and beautiful light. I loved how this alcove framed Elsa, and the afternoon light bounced all around the white plaster walls, creating soft highlights and shadows.
Elsa was fearless. The back of her dress was covered with white plaster after this shot, and there were bat droppings everywhere. But she, like Leslie and me, was having so much fun making these images, nothing else mattered.
Elsa is five rooms away in this image, and there are as many rooms behind me.
The top of the servant’s circular stairway.
Oh the light. I love how Elsa’s black dress melts into the stairway shadows.
What a different look by just coming up one step into the light. I expressed my concern about Elsa being on the stairs, which were extremely rickety, to which she blithely replied “Oh, I’ve already been up it several times when we were exploring.”
A third stairway portrait. Three very different looks, just by shifting slightly in the light.
Elsa, bailando en la luz.
The beauty of this hand-frescoed wall captured our hearts.
At the end of the afternoon, Elsa rests on the second-floor promenade overlooking the central courtyard. Special shout outs: thanks to Calvin for arranging for us to be here, to Elsa for being so much fun all day, to mentors Keith Carter, who taught me to make images with heart, Cig Harvey, who taught me to make images from my heart, and to Bobbi Lane, who taught me how to see light. All of their influences are evident in every image I make.