Maryanne + Ian’s Engagement Session // Huntsville Botanical Garden & Downtown

Maryanne + Ian’s Engagement Session

I met Maryanne & Ian this past June. I could tell from the beginning they were such a sweet couple and all about one another. Once I heard their proposal story (how Ian had a helicopter take them from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon so he could propose with a view) and saw how well they fit together; I wanted so bad to be the one to capture their big day. Fast forward five months and it was tine to take their engagement pictures at the Huntsville Botanical Garden (and later we did some downtown).

Congratulations, Maryanne & Ian! I can’t wait to photograph your wedding this coming May (fun fact: their wedding will be the first wedding I photograph after my own wedding- I can’t wait)!!

Side Note:

On the day of our session, 3/4 of the way in (while changing locations) I accidentally had a small car accident that involved a gate, lol. Because of having to wait on an accident report (just so you know, it 100% was not my fault-life happens though) we lost our sunlight and had to reschedule the last 15-20 mins of the session. Maryanne and Ian were incredibly understanding and so sweet about the whole situation. On a different day, we met downtown and finished up the rest of their session. All in all, it work out great (probably even better since we ended up having even more time downtown)! Thank you Maryanne & Ian for being so understanding and such wonderful clients!! 

Want to see more posts like this one? Check out Brittany & Bradley’s Engagement Session!

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Amelia + Heath’s Wedding // Harvest Hollow // Huntsville, Alabama

Amelia + Heath’s Wedding // Harvest Hollow // Huntsville, AL

Amelia’s gorgeous dress was from The Something Blue Shoppe in Hartselle, AL. Not only was it elegant and timeless but it looked amazing on Amelia!

Amelia & Heath commissioned Frances (from Ledgewood Fine Stationery) to design their wedding suite. Frances designed their pocket folder invitation suite, wedding logo, programs, koozies, napkins & save the dates!  It all turned out BEAUTIFUL!! Hair & makeup was done by the oh-so-talented Christiana (from The Transformation) and her team! Amelia and her bridesmaids looked stunning (even up until the sparkler exit at the very end of the night).One of my favorite parts of the day was when Amelia opened her present from Heath. Most of the time, the Bride already knows whats in the package before they even open it (since they usually pick it out). Amelia’s present from Heath was not like that though. Amelia had NO IDEA it was a ring she had wanted and planned to buy for her self. She told us the story about seeing the ring for the first time and knowing it had to be hers. So she started saving up for it. When she went back into the jewelry store she was shocked to see they had sold it. Little did she know, Heath had secretly bought it and kept it until the wedding day.I absolutely love her reaction! There were so many happy tears that followed. How incredible is that ring!?! WOW! Good job Heath!

Amelia and Heath decided not to see each other before the ceremony. Instead we made sure to setup a time for them to hold hands and share a few words right before the ceremony. It was one of my favorite moments that day! They both seemed more relaxed after sharing a few moments together. You may have noticed, both the ceremony and reception were in the same area. I was so amazed when Corrie (from 333 Designs) and her team flipped the whole room during the cocktail hour (that followed the ceremony). They did all of this is 40 minutes. 40 MINUTES, you guys! That is incredible!! And of course we had to do a few sunset/twilight photos! Harvest Hollow overlooks a beautiful field that was perfect for these photos! (Want to see more photos like these? Check our night shots gallery)

A lot of the weddings we photograph are important to me for a variety of different reasons. Sometimes I know the couple previously and sometimes I don’t but I grow close to them as the wedding planning process unfolds. Amelia & Heath’s wedding at Harvest Hollow was no different. During her wedding planning process, Amelia and I talked frequently  and although we didn’t know each other previously; I felt an immediate connection with her from the beginning!

Not only was Amelia & Heath’s wedding the very first wedding I’ve ever photographed at Harvest Hollow but Amelia actually helped me pick it as my own wedding venue (so I will be getting married there next May 2019, YAY!).  Each time we talked, Amelia would have tips and recommendations for me that might help me as I started my wedding planning journey. I feel so lucky to have such awesome clients who care and want to help during this stressful process!

Congratulations Amelia & Heath!! We hope you had a wonderful Honeymoon in Jamaica!

Thank you to all the wonderful vendors who made Amelia & Heath’s wedding so memorable! We had so much fun working with you guys!

-Ceremony/Reception: Harvest Hollow

-Hair & Makeup: The Transformation Artistry

-Stationery: Ledgewood Fine Stationery

-Dress: The Something Blue Shoppe

-Dress Alterations: Alison Anne Bridal

-Cake: Batter Up Cakes

-DJ/Band: Doc (Phillip Rigsby)

-Florist: 333 Designs

-Coordinating & Planning: 333 Designs

-Caterer: Chuck and Angie (C&A catering)

-2nd Photographer: Jessica Brown



Want to see more wedding previews? Here’s another you might enjoy! Katelyn & Brandon

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Katelyn + Brandon’s Wedding // Welleswood Venue // Athens, AL // Garden Wedding

Katelyn + Brandon’s Garden Wedding at Welleswood Venue

I could tell from the very beginning that Katelyn and I had very similar tastes in what we like.  Because of that, I knew her garden wedding would have so many lovely details. From handed down family heirlooms to tea cups that belong to different family members; there were so many unique and sentimental aspects to the day.

There’s really not many things I like more than a simple yet elegant garden wedding. Katelyn and Brandon chose the perfect venue and the perfect day (the weather was beautiful)! They said their vows surrounded by close friends and family members in front of the old Welleswood historic home in Athens, AL.

Congratulations Katelyn & Brandon! You guys did a wonderful job planning such an amazing event. Thank you for asking us to follow along and capture your big day!

Katelyn’s dress was absolutely gorgeous!! I loved all the beautiful detail and it fit like it was made for Katelyn!

If you know Katelyn personally, you know she is one of the sweetest and most genuine people you will ever meet. She is just as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside!

I know what you’re thinking and the answer is yes…we did have a white horse photobomb our wedding party pictures! It was magical! 


-Venue: Welleswood Venue in Athens, AL

-Hair & Makeup: Under the Veil (Becca)

-Dresses from: The Something Blue Shoppe

-Florist & Coordinator: Nip & Tuck (Jeannie Tuck)

-Cake: Chandra Holland

-Caterer: C and A Catering

-DJ/Band: Justin Miller

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Family shot lists // Why they are important

Let’s start from the beginning. What is a family shot list and why is it important?

A family shot list is a list of family member combinations that you would like taken on your wedding day (I provide a template thats a wonderful starting point and makes it a little easier). The reality is, all families are different so predicting who you are closest to can be challenging. Having a list of important family shots is a way to help us know who you are close to and which shots you will want with those individuals.

I always encourage my couples to do a family shot list no matter how small their families are. Not only does it make sure we are on the same page but it will allow you to think about your families and prioritizing your time before the actual wedding day. It’s always harder to do this on the day of the wedding (the less you have to think that day, the  better).

While we’re on the topic of family shots, another important thing to think about is the background of your family pictures. The family pictures typically take place at the ceremony site. Usually because there’s seating for those who need it and the ceremony area is easy to get to (for less mobile family members). It’s a good idea to pre visualize what you would like the background of those pictures to look like and then decorate accordingly. When thinking about the background, pick something that will look good as a close up and also as a wide shot  (or full-body group shots).

Don’t get me wrong, family shot lists definitely aren’t fun (its tedious and becomes repetitive quickly). Since there’s no re-dos on wedding days, you’ll be glad you took the time to list out such important shots!

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How to plan the perfect engagement session!

Engagement season is upon us!

Lately, you may have noticed lots of bling and excitement  in your news feeds. It’s because its that time of year again; engagement season! Over Christmas, New Years Eve, and Valentines Day lots of couples get engaged and start the wedding planning process. One of the many items to plan is the engagement session. So lets talk about engagement pictures!

What is an engagement session?

An engagement photo session is a portrait session with you and your soon-to-be significant other that is done prior to the wedding day. So, why do so many couples do them?

Here are a few reasons I often hear from clients:

-We have never had professional pictures and want to ‘practice’ before our wedding day.

-We need pictures of us for our save-the-dates and wedding website.

-We want to use our engagement pictures to ‘officially’ announce our engagement on social media.

-We want to make sure we work well with our photographer.

-We just want an excuse to have pretty pictures made.

These are all great reasons and I couldn’t agree more (especially testing out your photographer and practicing poses before the wedding day). You definitely wouldn’t wait to try on your wedding dress (for the first time) on your wedding day, would you?!?! So why would taking pictures be any different? Especially since the pictures will be one of the main ways you reminisce about the wedding day, years from now.

Things to think about while planning your engagement session!

Personally, I love when couples incorporate parts of their lifestyle or interests into their engagement session. Whether its hobbies, your career, traveling, other shared interests, your fur babies, or really anything that makes you who you are … the possibilities are endless!

I usually encourage couples to start with a main idea (such as your favorite city or maybe your favorite thing to do as a couple) and then plan the session around that main idea. Pre-visualize and think about what you want the final images to look like (are you and your fiance on a mountain overlooking a city, enjoying a glass of wine at your favorite restaurant, are you kayaking down a river… what do you want the final images to look like?). Once we have determined & discussed this, we can get to work planning it out!

Other details about the session:

-I encourage couples to bring three outfits that range in color, style, and dressy-ness (for variety). Also, feel free to bring any props that you may want to use (a nice blanket or quilt is wonderful to have for seated poses especially if the item has sentimental value). Also, comfortable shoes to walk in is a must!

-Picking outfits out can be stressful! A good rule of thumb, is to pick outfits that make you feel confident and that will hold up over time (you can’t go wrong with classic colors and patterns). Here are some examples!

-The background/location will likely make the biggest visual impact on your pictures. So picking a location that fits the look/style of what you want the images to look like, is key! Also keep in mind that destination engagement sessions can give you a totally different look (and they are super fun)!

-Typically I block off 2-3 hours for engagement sessions (one hour of shooting and 1-2  hours for changing outfits, changing locations, and etc…).

-Engagement galleries typically have 75-100 final edited images. And the images take around 2 weeks to be edited (so make sure to factor this in if there is a specific time you need the images by).

Want to see more examples or learn more about planning a great engagement session? Check out our FAQ or email us with any questions you may have!

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