“All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players; They have their exits and their entrances, And one man in his time plays many parts…”
Yesterday, I had a conversation with a prospective bride for next year. She said she was going to treat her wedding like a theatrical piece… if it were just about her and her man, they’d elope and call it good. She has decided to put on the “play” for their family and friends… to do it up right for them. To be fair, she teaches theatre to high schoolers so it’s how her mind works but, honestly, it’s a great way to look at a wedding. You write the script, design the set and hire some help for behind the scenes. The two of you also get to choose the players AND an appreciative audience… how cool is that?!
I love it that most of my clients are real and grounded people… they have a solid idea of what they want their wedding to be and the reviews are usually stellar by all accounts. ;0)
A thank you to Mr. Shakespeare for a marvelous quote, as always.
Wine Country weddings typically bring to mind a beautiful rustic setting… many times there are picnic tables and wine barrels festooned with great earthy sunflowers… the big red barn or cool old tasting rooms are the norm. The summer views are always stellar and the ceremonies are mostly under the bright blue Oregon skies.
Denise and Bruce opted for something more in the luxury category when they made their plans. There is a grand place in Newberg called the Allison Inn and Spa…
tailor made for a ritzy experience. The original plans called for a lot of the day to be held outdoors on the lush grounds. The last minute change to the indoors was brought on by another day in the mid- ’90s… a temperature we have become too acquainted with this summer. So, the short ceremony was in one of the gardens but everyone was relieved to have the rest of the celebration inside… we might not have had that option at many of the wineries down the road in Oregon’s wine country.
Expectations don’t end just because the wedding is over. The details and all of that planning are just the beginning and lots of couple heave a great sigh of relief when the day is done. For just about all of your vendors, the work is done before the wedding. The huge exception is your photographer and your video team, if you have one. As a photographer, I try to make sure my clients understand, going in, that the process after the big day is a relatively time intensive thing. If you add that to the line-up of weddings according to seasonal surges, you can expect to wait a bit for your wedding pictures to be properly finished.
So here we are on the edge of the busiest season… Summer is winding down and Fall weddings are beginning. Still busy but not quite as stacked up. I just sat down to write a letter to each of my September couples… they have had a little time to relax and reflect and I want them to know when to expect the images that we made. To that end, I have included two or three teasers for each… something they can print and put in a frame or throw onto Facebook for now. I know they have tons of pictures from their friends but I know they are waiting for my work. ;0)
The question for you is, have your vendors made it clear how the process works for each part of your plans? If not, then take a few minutes to ask them. True professionals can give you a solid set of expectations and that is worth a lot.
About two years ago, I had the pleasure of covering Cait and Matt’s wedding. Two days ago, I spent a couple of hours with them at their new home doing a kind of anniversary session. They had said they wanted to do a sort of day in the life photo shoot so we started with the two of them transferring vegetables into the beautiful planter boxes that Cait built. From there we had a small piano recital… Matt plays very well and Nunu always curls up under the music… Cait joined him to listen.
There is a man-cave downstairs with her woodworking shop and her Harley Davidson posters so we added some of that to the mix before they relaxed on the deck with a couple of beers. A few more cuddling on the couch and then some silly ones at Matt’s desk. All in all, two hours that they can revisit in their older years. The time will have flown by and they will laugh and wonder how they were ever this young.
Cait and Matt have some open wall space in their home and I can’t wait to see what they decide to print and hang from this day in their lives. ;0)
Let’s make sweet pictures!
“Grandma’s coffee table!” was the immediate response when I asked Elizabeth if there was something special to shoot these great mixed metal wedding rings on. I was thrilled that she and Anna had a true connection to this old and artsy table… they wanted something very personal instead of the very glamorous sort of ring pictures that a lot of people seem to like.
Their house in Eugene was a delight… art and textures and pops of color everywhere. Grandma’s coffee table fit right in. It was obvious that these two women shared a refreshing esthetic. It also answered my venue curiosity… they got married at Ninkasi Brewing Company and then we walked to the Falling Sky Pourhouse and Deli for an astounding variety of foods presented with beer pairings. The deli is a favorite place for them and they wanted to share it with their people. All in all, this day was deeply personal and that was exactly what they had in mind.
I always ask about the ring pictures so that I have time to do them properly. That’s when I try to get a feel for what sort of background or mood they might like. If you want a Hollywood glamour sort of thing or if you want your rings presented on the gears of your favorite bicycle, let your photographer know. ;0)
Cupcakes, a paradise of cupcakes was presented at this August wedding. Instead of being safely out of reach on a table, this tower of sugar was set on the stage at the Jupiter Hotel and it didn’t take long for the short ones to figure out how easy the pickings were going to be.
The young man in the middle wasn’t eating them so much as inhaling them… his stack of wrappers was getting pretty high. The younger man on the right seemed to be more discerning, eyeing his next choice while thoughtfully finishing the previous cupcake. I didn’t get to stay to watch the delighted little girl, my duties called me elsewhere, but she had the enthusiasm needed to join the boys in the carnage. I wonder if any of the grownups got a chance? ;0)
If you have a heaven of cupcakes in your plans, Portland has some great bakeries… check these out:
And then come talk to me about your wedding, ok?
See you soon!
You might not know it, but behind the scenes at every wedding swirls a cast of thousands!
Maybe it just seems that way but it’s a favorite part of the day for me… maybe it’s the only gambling I do as I watch the teamwork at hand from the beginning to the end.
Next door to the dance floor was a staging room of sorts… I walked by and saw a cake… of sorts. The small room was gradually taken over by three guest performers. All of them getting into the mood and waiting for show time.
I asked Crystal Lynn to let me have a moment of her time before she climbed into the cake… the crowd loved the unexpected show!
Behind the scenes is always an adventure. ;0)
BTW, check out Peter Corvallis Productions if you are in need of interesting bits.
Happy to help!!
The Power of Pie is almost equal to the power of a summer day. Together, they are an unstoppable combination. ;0)
Heather and Derek had a sweet wedding in the beautiful backyard of a family friend. The yard was tented against the heat and, after the ceremony, several large tables were set with flowers and food. A quiet social hum punctuated by small children running in the grass made a perfect backdrop to this wedding day. A little after 5:00, the pies came out of the kitchen and the crowd started to move towards the patio. Derek is a cheesecake man so the top of the pie tower was a small and mighty cheesecake… a few minutes later, he was wearing a smear of cheesecake on his left cheek and Heather was grinning a lot. After the laughing and the cleanup, the kids closed in for pie. After all, pie is good for you.
Brides Rule the Day at the Jupiter Hotel! It should have been the headline on the Sunday morning paper this weekend!
My two cool brides, Melissa & Mia, brought such a confident spark to their wedding day that the crowd was more involved than many I have seen. It was really great to see the level of happy going on. I can’t wait to work through all of their images… it’s going to make me smile all over again.
In all of this, I finally had a chance to work with the delightful Melissa Coe, an officiant held in high regard here in Portland. I was not disappointed and as we chatted a little during the day, I was pleased to find a kindred spirit in her. Not all wedding vendors are created equal so when I find the ones that fit, I am elated. ;0)
Getting married? I’d love to talk to you!
A kind of Heaven can be found in Oregon most of the year but as Summer starts to travel into Fall, there is a special quality to the light… it’s my favorite time for country weddings. Oregon’s wine country is where you should start your search. Take a late afternoon tour of a few vineyards that offer weddings… go see what they look like in the soft evening light. The mid-day sun will be too harsh. The image above was taken just after 7:00 on the last day of August… we were on a quiet road outside of Vista Hills Vineyard a few years ago. From where I stood, it might as well have been Tuscany… it was a Heaven, indeed!
A little back story for that day – it rained buckets before the ceremony and the catering company expected the bride to give up on the outdoor plans. She persevered, the caterers reset the soggy tables and we had the most astounding skies for getting married under!