Let me tell you about how I survived grad school in a simple combination: Katie + Wine.
We *may* have been a little tipsy during all of our classes, so I cannot tell you how, at some point, Katie and I decided to extract ourselves from the virtual world, and hang out in real life. I am sure it involved some sort of awkward conversation. Katie and I are simply weird together. We like it, though.
Andy, on the other hand, I have technically known longer. It is a technicality, though, because I know his sister through Broadway Company at Arrowhead High School, and I definitely did jazz hands in their backyard at some point.
Being asked to photograph a close friend's wedding is both a honor and a terrifying mess of nerves because if you mess it up, they might hate you forever. If Katie hated me, who would I tag in ridiculous things on Facebook, or text about hating teaching between January 23-April 16? It was a risk, though, I was willing to take, because some friendships are meant to withstand the test of a wedding.
After their flawless engagement pictures, I was geared up for their big day. Katie curated all of the details perfectly.
Katie picked out a long-sleeved, a-line dress that set the stage for an elegant, intimate wedding for her and Andy's closest family and friends. When I arrived at the Osthoff Resort in Elkhorn, WI, she was just back from the salon with her hair in a high, polished bun.
Andy was getting ready at the resort also, but the scene was a little different from the girls. Katie kept her entourage small, including her sister, mother, and maid of honor.
One of the things I have to applaud Katie on, is her scheduling of the day. She knew she wanted Glamour Shots by Marie, and she made time for it. We spent about an hour and a half with each other, getting all the detail shots and savoring every moment.
I am so glad she did make sure she had enough time because (unlike our normal encounters in sweatpants and unwashed hair) she was absolutely flawless that day.
As I prepped both the partners for their first look, I saw nothing but nerves and excitement in both of their eyes. When a couple decides to do a reveal, or first look, before the ceremony, I strive to keep it as intimate as possible. Just the two of them and my camera. This is how you get the rawest moments.
Completing wedding party pictures before the ceremony was something Katie and I decided would help us best manage time without interrupting the flow of the party.
Katie and Andy also opted for a mix of artistic and traditional pictures. It gave them a perfect balance of personality and stoic images for family and friends to frame.
We started outside with some traditional portraits.
As we moved through picture taking, the creativity started to flow. The Osthoff Resort offers amazing indoor locations, great for off-season weddings.
Playing with lighting is one of my favorite things to do. I am the queen of sun flares and it defines my style. Having a friend as a bride and a loose schedule gave us ample opportunity to play with the light.
The night ambled on at a perfect pace, and the party was as elegant as the couple. Everything about the day was theirs, and that is what made it feel right.
To one of the ladies who has pulled me through the worst of time, and celebrated the best; and the man who has made her smile bigger than I have ever seen before: may you both always find happiness and solace in each other until we are on this Earth no more.