I don’t want to play favorites with Alyssa & Joe’s morning wedding at the Hampton Maid. I love every wedding I shoot and get to work with the best people (thankful), but they did something that is quite near and dear to my heart. And by my heart what I really mean is my stomach. I have a longstanding belief that breakfast is the best meal. I could eat it for all three meals of every single day and this is not an over exaggeration. So, to do some Hamptons wedding photography and be rewarded with breakfast for our meal, was basically heaven for me. But WAIT, did they stop there? No, no they did not. They just had to take this Hamptons wedding up another food notch with a wood-fired pizza truck to finish the day off. Listen, I make it no secret how much I love pizza. Have you seen my contact form? I ask everyone about pizza. Let’s just say I wrapped their Hamptons wedding photography with a full heart and even fuller stomach.
Let’s take a small step back as I quickly realize I am a wedding photographer and not a food critic. Right. I tell friends, family and clients this all the time but the best part about doing wedding photography is that every single event is different for so many reasons. For the case of Alyssa & Joe, shooting an early morning Fall wedding was quite different than what I’m used to. Such a huge advantage their day had compared to the norm with an early start, was that their first look was during beautiful morning light, which is not something I get to play with often. It really took their Hamptons wedding photography to the next level in my opinion.
When southern charm meets a Catskills wedding venue, this DeBruce wedding is what you get. This day was a beautiful cocktail of sweet tea, white suit jackets and fireworks. Lots of fireworks. As is always the case, one of my favorite aspects of Catskills wedding photography is that it’s a location that when special to couples getting married in Upstate New York, they want to bring their families from all over the country and world to and show them why it’s so special. This was the case for Sarah Hope & Tipton, two people who made the Catskills a part time home but who are originally from the south.
To make this DeBruce wedding extra special to photograph is that Sarah Hope & Tipton recently bought a place of their own only minutes from the Catskills wedding venue so we were able to start the day on their own property. Like so many places in the Catskills, even a person’s home is filled with character, like their own barn and trail on the land. These are things I love photographing all the time and to have that at their own home was quite cool. When transitioning the day to the DeBruce, visually, things flowed perfectly. From one rustic scene to the next. Honing in on candid moments like I love to do, it was fun capturing friends and guests from another part of the country near where I’m familiar with photographing. As if all of this wasn’t beautiful itself, they put on a surprise fireworks show in the middle of their reception, which given the location, went really hard. Like, ear-ringing-kind-of hard. It’s always fun to photograph these displays.
When I first started doing NYC wedding photography, my natural instincts were to always try and frame out all of the people, the noise, the chaos of the New York to make clean images of couples in a silo. But, I quickly realized that all of that chaos is what makes New York City what is it and why couples choose to get married at NYC wedding venues. Paloma & Evan are two of those people and decided to host an NYC restaurant wedding. Rather than trying our best to get those clean images, absent of other people and characteristics of the city, we leaned into it and embraced what New York City is.
Right from the get-go of their wedding, we went with what the city was giving us. Hard. I set up Paloma & Evan’s first look right in the middle of Washington Square Park. On a Saturday. During May. You can imagine what the scene was like setting up an intimate moment in the throes of city-goers, bicyclists, performers and tourists. Honestly, this is what NYC wedding photography should be about. Was it as chaotic as it sounds? Sure. Was it exactly what they wanted and why they chose Palma as their NYC wedding venue? You bet. This is where the honesty of the environment you choose for your wedding comes in. To me, New York City was just another guest at their restaurant wedding. And that guest got plenty of face time. It was perfect.
Every single wedding I shoot is special. Each and every couple has their own unique background and therefore, a unique story. My entire wedding photography thesis revolves around telling these stories in a true and meaningful way. The unique part of Amber & Ryan’s North Branch Inn wedding story was an inspiring one to capture. Ryan came into their relationship with two daughters and it was obvious from the very beginning of their wedding day that they would each play an important part of this new coming together. It was a different energy than what I’m used to photographing on a typical wedding day, so it gave this Catskills wedding a special kind of flair.
The ceremony, was of course, about Amber & Ryan becoming one, as wedding ceremonies usually are. But intertwined in all of that was the creation a new family. They built in specific aspects to bring this new joint effort home in a really special way set amongst the beautiful natural backdrop of a North Branch Inn wedding. On top of that, what was another unique and visually inspiring aspect of their wedding, was the outdoor dinner reception, which is pretty rare at Upstate NY wedding venues. It was certainly fun to capture and a different experience than most wedding reception dinners. Add in some bowling alley photos and you have yourself a great day from start to finish.
This wasn’t the first (or even second) Arnold House wedding I’ve shot and if I have it my way, it won’t be the last either. Every time I get to document a Catskills wedding up here in Livingston Manor, very very good things happen. Julie & Josh deserve so much credit with how things went during this beautiful summer wedding in Upstate New York. They settled into their wedding day from the get go with amazing attitudes and just looking to explore and have a great time. What I’m able to photograph is a direct result of that attitude. If you bring this level of fun, excitement and joy, I will be able to capture moments like this.
You never really know which weddings will end with a raging dance party, so when it happens, we go all out. Julie & Josh tore it up from the first note to the last and I was loving being in the middle of the chaos the entire time. Dancing is such an underrated part of the day in my opinion and I love freezing that energy. Your wedding photos should allow you to relive the excitement and energy of the party, so when you go hard out there, you’re duly rewarded. Fun at the time and incredible moments to relive after all is said and done. I humbly request each and every future couple to bring it out on the dance floor and you’ll get photos like Julie & Josh. Scroll on to peep their Arnold House wedding.
So, where do I begin with this Blue Hill Farm wedding in the Hudson Valley? Do I start with how Lainee & Ben played rock, paper, scissors to determine who had to read their vows first? Do I start with the raging dance party? Or do I begin with how Lainee (THE BRIDE), hopped on a drum set during the reception, completely unplanned and spur of the moment and absolutely crushed the drum sections to Lit, Fall Out Boy and other pop-punk songs of the glory days?
Let’s take a step back because without any of the aforementioned festivities, Lainee & Ben’s wedding at Blue Hill Farm would have been legendary. Luckily, I’m a Hudson Valley wedding photographer who so often works with couples who just get it. They understand why we are here, why this wedding is happening and soak up every last moment for all that it’s worth. Lainee & Ben are two of those kinds of people. From start to finish, the moments I was able to hone in on and capture were exactly what I set out to document each and every wedding. No creating, forcing or acting out any of these things, but rather telling an honest story. And when I’m photographing weddings, because I’m not directing them heavily while simply repeating the same things over and over again, you truly get what you give as a couple. Lainee and Ben got a whole lot in return. Here’s their story coming at you from Blue Hill at Stone Barns in the Hudson Valley.
This is the formula for Upstate New York wedding perfection: mountain views, Fall foliage colors and a layer of clouds blanketing the sky which adds vibrance to all of the surroundings. Going back through Eli & Skylar’s Hayfield Catskills wedding, perfection it was. As a Catskills wedding photographer yes, the views are incredible. The outdoor ceremony stunning. And the weather an absolute delight. But, what really made all of these things pop was the incredible energy Eli, Skylar and crew brought with them all day long.
I love the natural beauty of the Catskills, but truly what is exciting for me to document is the love and emotion that comes with weddings. This Hayfield Catskills wedding fit so perfectly with the tight-knit group of family and friends they brought with them. The property at this Catskills wedding venue is undoubtedly gorgeous, but it also felt intimate at the same time. The location of the ceremony, one of my favorite times of a wedding day to capture, was set beautifully in the open field with nature surrounding the spot. It felt right. How lucky am I? Making a living celebrating these days with couples in some of the most beautiful locations on the East coast, as evidenced here, here and here just to name a few. Anyway, scroll on to feel the feels at Hayfield Catskills.
From the moment I stepped on to the property for Jennie & Jesse’s June Farms wedding, I knew this Catskills wedding venue would pair perfectly with my style. I am a sucker for camping and cabins, so when I was able to plan a first look in a grove of them, it set the tone for the day immediately. They didn’t stop there either. June Farms is a fully functioning farm so there were horses taking Jennie to and from the ceremony location. Not a bad limo service in my opinion.
But of course, all of this is nothing without a couple who really, really likes each other. Supportive families who were beaming all day long and friends to share it all with. My job is to be a facilitator and not get in the way of all these wonderful connections, moments, hugs and happy tears. There is just no honest way to script any of that, so making everyone feel comfortable around a camera to be present and show emotion is my secret sauce. I’d love to get back here for another June Farms wedding and because as you’ll see, the location is stunning and full of character. My favorite combo of aesthetics.