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Boulder Engagement Photography: Rachel and Tommy

Rachel found me via a web search while she was looking for a photographer to take engagement photos for her ‘save the dates’ for her July 2014 wedding in Telluride, CO.  We had a great connection right away and by the time the session was over I was totally bummed that I would not get to photograph their wedding as well!  They had already hired someone locally for the wedding before they found out about me.  Rachel and Tommy met each other while they were both attending CU in 2007 at the St. Julien Hotel.  It was only fitting that we took their engagement photos on the CU campus and finished up with a few shots at the St. Julien, also where Tommy proposed to Rachel.

I just loved working with this couple and we had so much fun walking around the beautiful CU campus and then ending at a place that holds a special place in their hearts.  They are both Colorado lovers, avid skiers, hikers, and outdoor sports kind of people in general.  Tommy is obsessed with the Broncos and we even had to have a quick intermission during our session so he could check out the game at the St. Julien.

To Rachel and Tommy, THANK YOU for choosing me to capture some special engagement portraits for you!  I wish you all the luck in the world as you move into your lives as a married couple.  I know your wedding will be absolutely gorgeous and I wish I could be there to capture it for you.  Please keep in touch as your family grows….  I would love to work with you again anytime!

An Italian inspired wedding in California wine country: Kajsa & Taylor Swallow

Oct. 31, 2013-Nov. 2, 2013

One of my very favorite things about my profession is that I get to travel to new and beautiful locations to capture destination wedding celebrations all over the country.  In this particular case, I got to spend a weekend at one of the most gorgeous villas I have ever laid eyes (or lens) on; Villa Montebella in Glen Ellen, CA on the edge of Sonoma county.  It seemed very fitting that this wedding was directly following my own personal first time adventure to Italy, as I had just recently come to appreciate Italian culture including the leisurely (& delicious!) meals, the amazing wine, and the breathtaking landscapes & countrysides all along the northern region of Italian wine country.  Kajsa and Taylor were beyond amazing to work with, top to bottom, left to right and 360 degrees around.  Their warm and welcoming personalities were contagious…not to mention the insane backdrops I had to work with for their outdoor ceremony, their romantic couples portraits around the property, and for the intimate reception/dinner in the wine cave.  Mmmmm….  the wine cave and the hundreds of candles that lit it up were unlike ANYTHING I have ever seen at any wedding, anywhere, ever.  And as if all of that wasn’t enough, their love for each other and all of the special people that graced their union was oozing out of them like light energy.  My trigger finger literally couldn’t keep up with my eye, but I shot my heart out to it’s absolute content with a feeling of joy and satisfaction and absolute connection for two straight days.

Kajsa and Taylor came to me by way of their wedding coordinator, Paige Reberry of Colorado Wedding Company.  Taylor is a long time friend of Paige’s and based on her glowing recommendation and my online portfolio, they hired me sight unseen.  I knew I would love them (because Paige said so!), but I had no idea just how far I would fall in love with two total strangers over the course of two days.  This is yet another thing I love about what I do and something that has enriched my life in countless ways over the last ten years.  When I spend time with couples, documenting their love as a celebration, clients cross over into the realm of friends more often than not, and in this case, they made the leap within milliseconds of my welcome and instantaneous observation of their warm spirits and beautiful relationship.  Nothing gives me more satisfaction than giving what I know how to do best to people that appreciate the power of imagery and artistry that is, in my mind, what wedding photography is all about.

When I get a letter like this, I know I have done something special… “Oh my Gawd!  They are absolutely amazing, from the portraits to the candid shots, we just can’t believe how amazing the photos turned out. The poses/moments, you were able to capture on film are nothing short of amazing. And to top it off, you also had gorgeous artistic shots utilizing the light/angle/subject… we are over the top thrilled and can’t wait to share them with friends and family. Thank you does not convey the gratitude we have for you agreeing to fly to California and spend the weekend with us. You are amazing!  We absolutely love them all and are having trouble even trying to narrow them down for cards and framing. :) Now that’s a great “problem” to have, right?   We must find a date to meet up, raise a glass to all the effort that went into this amazing weekend and the new found friendships that emerged!  XOXO  Kajsa & Taylor”

To Kajsa and Taylor, I look forward to a beautiful and long lasting friendship with you both!  Thank you from the bottom of my heart for including me in such a special time in your lives.  It was an honor and a gift.  To Paige Rebbery, thank you a million times over for connecting me to this amazing wedding!  You are simply the best & I love you!  To Kelsy Albright, your execution of this weekend was flawless on every level.  Thank you so much for all of your hard work!! And finally, to Alex Rubin, my CA local associate photographer, thank you for capturing the garden party day for me so that I could red-eye it back to Denver for my last wedding of the season.  Your images are a perfect fit and I truly appreciate your efforts and talents!


An Intimate Affair in Denver: Sarah and Nat’s Wedding Day

October 26th, 2013

Sarah and Nat met coaching middle school girls’ volleyball.  They were both teaching in the Cherry Creek School District at separate middle schools.  Sarah had been asked to step in at the last minute to help coach and this was Nat’s first season coaching.  The game was at the school where Sarah taught, Horizon.  Nat sauntered in wearing bright orange pants, a yellow button down, and a teal tie.  She immediately found him charming and said so to the referee, who was also a security guard at Horizon.  The game began and it became very apparent that Nat had never coached volleyball.  Sarah helped guide his girls while her girls dominated the game.  Sarah’s team won and while she helped clean up the gym, the referee approached Nat.  She asked him for his phone number because one of the coaches wanted it.  Nat didn’t know which coach was getting his phone number, but he handed it over in the hopes that it was Sarah.  It was!

Nat hatched his proposal plan with a good friend who owns The Denver Beer Company, a local brewery. The DBC was tapping a milk stout, Sarah’s favorite, the Friday before her birthday.  Nat casually mentioned it to Sarah and they decided to go.  A friend was supposed to pick Sarah up but she was running late so she called Nat to tell him and he immediately dispatched his brother, Alex, to pick her up, which she found odd, but didn’t really think too much about it.  Alex and Sarah finally arrived and before she could even sit down, the owner asked if she would help pull off the sign covering up the beer’s name on the menu board.  Again, she remembers thinking this was odd, but willingly participated.  Nat quieted everyone down and, with the entire brewery watching her, she proceeded to stand up on a chair to pull off the sign.  She realized something was up by the shocked looks on the patron’s faces.  She turned to Nat and noticed he was down on one knee.  Then she looked at the beer sign.  It read: “Sarah, say yes.”  So she looked back to Nat and said “YES.”  The whole place erupted in applause as they kissed.  She couldn’t have been more surprised and says she couldn’t have asked for a more memorable proposal.  Sarah’s favorite part was how Nat made the day even more special by inviting their family to join them after the proposal so that they could all celebrate the start of their life together.

These two lovebirds had a darling backyard wedding ceremony at Sarah’s uncles house followed by an “open house” style reception where people could come and go as they pleased. Sarah wore beautiful jewelry from her favorite grandmother that passed away last Easter and got ready in her old room as a way to keep her close while she said her vows to Nat. After the ceremony I took them to City Park, which happened to be where they shared their first kiss, for their romantic portraits set against a beautiful fall/sunset backdrop. Then we were off to the dance party and cocktail reception at Eden restaurant where Nat and his brother, Alex, blew the guests away with their amazing swing dancing moves.  It was a fantastic celebration of a beautiful love and a blast was had by all.  I would be lying if I said that I didn’t shake it down on the dance floor.  I did.  :-)  Thank you to Sarah and Nat for including me in one of the sweetest, most genuine and special wedding celebrations that I have ever had the pleasure of documenting and being a part of.  I look forward to following you both on your life adventure as a married couple!

Surprises abound: Allison and Eric’s Castle Cliff Wedding, Sedalia CO

When Eric surprised Allison on January 11, 2013 by proposing to her in a hotel room at the historic Brown Palace Hotel with red and white rose petal scattered everywhere, they had no idea about the surprises that lay ahead on their journey to the alter.  They had made all of their arrangements to get married in Estes Park at The Chapel on the Rock at St. Malo with their reception to follow at the Taharaa Mountain Lodge on October 5, 2013.  They were excited to share the beauty of Colorado in the fall with all of their out of town family and friends.  But, after the biggest flood in Colorado history devastated Estes Park and all of the surrounding areas the weekend of Sept. 13th, their well made plans were about to get scattered into the wind.  Exactly one week before their wedding day, the Taharaa announced that they were officially in the “no-flush” zone and that they would not be able to host the reception after-all.  Inset freak out here.  With most venues and churches all over the state already being booked for Oct. 5, Ann Marlin, their rockstar wedding coordinator, put on her wonder-woman costume and made some serious magic happen.  She was able to get them the best plan B I could ever have imagined… and from a photographic standpoint, I couldn’t have been happier!

In the end, they had a traditional Catholic Ceremony (like they wanted) at the Holy Ghost in downtown with a gorgeous reception at Castle Cliff Estate in Sedalia.  It was a beautiful day and thankfully Allison and Eric had an A-team of vendors that were able to come together to give them the fairy-tale wedding day they had been dreaming of.

A huge thank you to everyone that helped make this gorgeous wedding one for the record books, and in record time.  First and foremost to Ann and Cortney from Cloud 9 Weddings and Papers for all of your rockstar moves leading up to and ON the wedding day itself.  You ladies should be very, VERY proud of yourselves!  I know I am proud of you!  Secondly, to the Perfect Petal for all of the gorgeous flowers that made that tent absolutely glow.  To Soul School, the off-the-chain wedding band that had everyone on their feet dancing the night away.  You guys are awesome and it was easy to see that all of the guests thought so too.  And last, but certainly not least, to Sarah Fischer, my fantastic second shooter that day.  I always love working with you! Your energy and attitude are contagious on so many levels.  Grazie, everyone!

Allison told me that her favorite memory of the proposal was “walking into the room and being totally surprised and then not being able to stop smiling afterwards.”  It would seem that history repeated itself on her wedding day too.  I can attest to the fact that when Allison walked into the tent at Castle Cliff Estates, she was beyond surprised…  and didn’t stop smiling for the rest of the night!  Congratulations to you both!  I wish you a lifetime of love, happiness, and lots of surprises.  :-)