A bicycle built for two requires a very special teamwork… these two people have that teamwork in spades! Lindy and Kenrick have an anniversary coming up soon and I always think of this image from their rehearsal dinner. This was a true destination wedding with most everyone flying out from the east coast and me flying down from Portland… Sacramento was the airport and then there was a fabulous drive east to the foothills of the Sierras. The destination was the town of Sutter Creek. The rehearsal dinner and the wedding were held at Avio Vineyards just on the edge of town.
Avio is a delightful blend of rustic and classy with peacocks roaming the grounds and views out over the soft hills. Dinner was set with this view in mind and everyone was having a fine time. Before dessert was served, Lindy’s dad took Kenrick for a walk ostensibly to give him some advice… meanwhile, Lindy was pulling this red tandem bike out of the shed, making sure the bow was secure. You can probably imagine the surprise on his face when he came back! They took the bike up to the parking area immediately and took a spin in the fading light… perfect teamwork!
Destination weddings also require teamwork. As a photographer available for travel, I have a few pieces of advice about the process. Plan on bringing in your photographic team a day early at least… it offers some very real insurance that they will be there on time and rested for your wedding day. It will also give them a chance to deal with possible lost or damaged equipment… these days, rental gear can usually be overnighted if necessary. As a perk for bringing me in early, I always offer a couple of hours at the rehearsal to get to know the immediate crowd and to check out the venue as much as possible.
Your professional photographers will no doubt talk to you about all of these things in the planning sessions… if they don’t, you’d better do the asking or risk having things go sideways. ;0)
If you pick a Friday afternoon to go to the courthouse in Vancouver, you will have a long wait in traffic…. plenty of time to get nervous. Gary and Steve and several family members lined up to go through the metal detectors in the entrance of the Vancouver Courthouse… after a few blips and beeps, we made our way to the noisy waiting area on the second floor. Promptly at 4:30, a man came to assign each set of people to a room… we were about 12 in number so we were ushered into a sizable space to wait for a judge. There were papers to be filled out, stories and jokes to be told, nerves to be soothed… the judge came in almost an hour later and, in about two minutes, married these men. To go that fast after so long came as a surprise.
To have to wait so many years to get to this point is the real story. They bought beautiful puzzle rings about 12 years ago when it looked like their marriage might be a legal possibility… those rings got put into a box and saved for better times. Well, better times are here for some parts of the country and, with luck, will soon be possible in Oregon.
I meet some of the very best people in this line of work… they take care of each other and that’s what a marriage is all about. ;0)
On a very soggy weekend before Spring Break, several sets of Montessori parents and small children gathered on the muddy slopes of Gabriel Park… our mission was to create an art piece to frame and offer at auction for a good cause. The annual Pathways Auction was established to generate Tuition Assistance funds for qualified applicants. The Auction is held yearly in the spring and the proceeds are used to fund tuition assistance, special programs and to supplement the educational environments.
This is all a volunteer effort… if you’d like to get involved, there is more information at Montessori Pathways Spring Fete.
Back to the muddy hill… imagine a dozen three to five year olds on one hill, about the same number of parents on a slope right behind me and the feat of directing this small circus! The rain was spotting my lens and the little girls wearing dresses were reluctant to sit all the way down. It devolved rapidly into sword fights with brandished mums and lots of laughing. We all got muddy and when I left, most of the kids were running up and down the slopes of the park waving their tattered mums… laughter ringing in the air.
I love my job!
Every time I get to a venue with strings of these lovely, old fashioned market lights around the dance floor, I smile. There is something very sweet and intimate in the mood they cast. This particular place is a vineyard out in Sheridan… J. Wrigley Vineyards has a quiet, breezy hilltop and the sun sweeps across it from the west. When it goes down, the pinks ands the blues come up right before the stars start to show… some of the prettiest light in the world! A few strands of these lights is all it takes to define the open spaces.
I have heard them called french market lights and string lights… ask your planners and your venue owners about them… I guarantee it will add to your wedding.
Sometimes it’s the little things that make a day special… sometimes it’s really fine to look around and smile. ;0)
I get up every morning determined to both change the world and have one hell of a good time. Sometimes this makes planning my day difficult.
Ty and Lamar were still a little giddy from the wedding at the Academy Chapel and the marching band that took the crowd to the Brickstone Ballroom. As the guests went into the party, these two took a small detour to their favorite wine bar for a glass of champagne and a short breather… we stepped into the next room for a picture and Lamar said he wanted to play the first dance. Watching them, I don’t think it was a case of nerves about the ability to dance as much as it was a chance to really connect again before they were washed into the greater sea of friends and family waiting down the street.
A sweet break for some portraits is often an unexpected welcome on a jam-packed wedding day… I see it almost every time and my clients always comment on it, thankful for a chance to be together before the crowd… maybe you should keep that in mind when you sit down to plan your day. ;0)
Got a little time? Come check out my work… I’d love to talk to you!
There is something about an old barn on a sunny Oregon day… something very right. We had just finished the larger wedding party pictures and sent the men and women in to freshen up before the ceremony. Meanwhile, Liz and Josh wanted a couple of shots taken with their Maid of Honor and the Best Man… the barn was the perfect choice for this since we were out of the way of arriving guests. This barn has been in the family for ages… both Josh and his brother have grown up here and I like that it is a family member in a sense.
I kept the couple back for a few portraits here knowing that the ceremony was the next big thing ahead… we made some beautiful images in a short amount of time. Lucky that we did because the other 15 minutes that we had planned for afterwards didn’t happen… sometimes it’s just too important to be with the guests who have come so far to see you.
One of the things I try for in every wedding is to have two short sessions carved into the time line for portraits of just the bride and her groom… they don’t have to be complicated and we really don’t need more than about 15 minutes per session. If the light is right and the timing works, you can get a lot done. If you don’t take the time, you miss out on one of the most important parts of the day… the whole reason you are getting married is to be that couple. Special pictures of the two of you that should last you a lifetime.
I hope you will consider talking to me about your wedding, even if you don’t have a barn. ;0)
Once upon a time there was a beautiful historic home in Corbett, near Crown Point. The Viewpoint Inn was built in 1924 and survived it’s spot overlooking the Gorge until the summer of 2011 when it was ravaged by fire. It’s a long and hard story but it sounds like it might actually rise from the ashes. If the owner can make that happen, he has a chance to put right some of the things that went so badly that summer. There were brides and grooms left high and dry… they were rescued by many of the neighboring venues and I remember it being a huge group effort in the wedding community… one that made me realize how much we can help each other when the need is there. By all accounts, the owner has had a long standing love affair with this place and will take it fully back to 1924… it will become a dream destination once more. I hope I get watch a few more couples get married on that lawn someday.
This image is from a few years back but counts as a favorite of mine… Leslie and Izaac had a few moments before the ceremony to sit in one of the upstairs rooms. A little sparkling water and some quiet conversation while they watched their quests arrive… such a peaceful start to a new chapter. ;0)
Let’s make a little history together, ok?
Meg and Trevor had one of the most memorable weddings in my career. Last minute changes took them from the Art Museum to a private vineyard outside of Dundee and it made a world of difference! I imagine the timing took a small toll on the planning but it came together as if it had been the original venue all along. Soiree was the engine driving the organization and all of the vendors were top notch… we even had two members of the Portland Opera in this impressive list.
Stoller Vineyard has a circle of trees and a flat area down the hill from the vines… on this August day, I arrived to find a very elegant dinner setting under a large tent… Francoise Weeks Florist was staging the tables with orchids and astounding woodland textures, Molli from Soiree had her team tasked with all sorts of little details… personalized place settings, a small table of grass to hold the seating assignment cards, golden bamboo chairs… little embellishments too numerous to count.
Meanwhile, in a different section, Vibrant Table was fashioning a feast… the grilled salmon was making everyone hungry. Across the checkered dance floor, Pepe and the Bottle Blonds were getting set up and near the ceremony site, the sounds of opera warming up… the lyrics were printed and hung over each chair for the guests to read.
I have to say it’s always been a favorite part of my day to watch as all of the pieces get stitched into one incredible weave… I get to photograph the parts and the process. The final cloth is so gorgeous!
Jenkins Estate is one of our local treasures and has been a sweet spot for weddings forever. Unlike some of the venues that drape themselves in wedding fluff, this is a lovely old summer home listed on the National Register of Historic Places… 68 acres of gently groomed gardens and walking paths surround the 1912 English hunting-lodge style of the main house. There is a stable, a carriage house and a tea house… all of them offer different moods for different seasons.The wrap around veranda on the main house is a great place to be on a summer day! As a photographer, I like that the place seems so away from everything. It’s on the edge of Beaverton but somehow seems a world away from the daily grind.
Gretchen and Jerrod shared a grand kiss in the tea house before the crowd lit into “All You Need is Love” on kazoos… a perfect Spring day!
Making plans of your own? I’d love to talk to you. ;0)