Fall is such an amazing time of the year for so many reasons. Who doesn’t love getting out the warm clothing like sweaters, hats, long sleeves and mittens! It’s so beautiful as well, the leaves change to amazing colors and are just a spectacular backdrop for an engagement session like this photo showcases. As a photographer, I’m always happy to be located in Northern Indiana, as this location generally provides 6-8 weeks of beautiful colors and mild temperatures, allowing us to capture shots such as this one!
The Dip at Lerner Theater
I always like to try and make it outside during the reception dinner with my couple, to try and make some fun images of the venue & location. My bride let me know during our pre-wedding consultation, that she wanted to get a shot in front of this marquee sign. The Lerner Theater in Downtown Elkhart is an amazing building and the billboard sign out front is one of the focal points of the venue. I positioned them below the sign and we decided to try “the dip.” After a few attempts, I had my exposure dialed in and the we ended up with this shot!
During the hustle of a typical wedding day, it’s important to stop and reflect on the memories being created that day. In this shot, I wanted to showcase the eloquent hair, makeup, jewelry and dress that the bride spent so much time preparing, preserving them for many years to come. We took about 10 minutes and shot some more formal portraits and this particular one stood out from the others. Natural window light can be absolutely amazing for bridal portraiture!
Fun, Laughter, Emotion & Picnics
Picnic in the park! Such a fun time in this couples’ lives together and such an honor to be able to document it for them! One of the ways I like to photograph couples is to allow them to be themselves by using long zoom lenses and placing myself far enough away from them that they forget I’m there. So when my clients wanted to have a picnic in the park, I knew we were going to make great photographs such as this. It’s always a good idea for clients to have an activity of some sort to do for the session, as it allows them to forget about the camera that’s pointed at them and just interact naturally and freely as they normally would. That’s the case in this photo as well, and is a big reason why you can see the natural emotion in it!
Love is in the Air!
Such a beautiful spontaneous moment! Often times during the course of a hectic wedding day, there is little time set aside for the couple to relax, slow down and truly enjoy the wedding day. With this couple, I was able to schedule about 30 minutes for them to spend together and enjoy each other’s company. With the ceremony taking place in the beautiful Madelyn Bertrand park near Niles, MI, I knew we were going to make amazing photos. They chose to take a slow walk through a meadow area and talk and laugh together. I followed far behind, utilizing my long reach lens, and snapped this frame right when they paused for a brief kiss!
Wedding Photos in the Park
I think this an interesting pose and really shows off the bride’s wedding dress well. I wasn’t going for any particular look here, I had just asked these two to make up some poses and action and this was what they came up with. The wedding day can often be full of stress and a million responsibilities, but my job as a professional photographer is to make sure you carve out time to take photos such as these. Once the ceremony is over and everyone’s gone home, you’ll never regret having these shots to reflect back on. These two had a great charisma together and clicked super well in front of the camera. The park setting lends a contrasting darker background, along with the natural lighting, combined to form this wonderful environmental portrait of bride and groom.
Fun Fall Engagement
Often times, the most un-rehearsed or spontaneous pictures turn out to be the best. At the end of their engagement photo session, we started packing up the photo gear to head out, and my client noticed a small area with beautiful fall colors and asked if we could take one more picture. Of course I said yes, and I sat them down on a blanket with the setting sun at their back. I liked the highlights the sunset provided and proceeded to take a few pics, figuring they wouldn’t be anything spectacular, as we had already devoted much of the last 2 hours to capturing a set of pictures for them. Once I made it back home and started culling through all of the images, I realized this photo happened to be probably the best from the entire session! Of course, the genuine friendship & connection
Grace Church Wedding - Love in a Frame
What a super fun couple! We had a really great time this day, walking around Shanklin Park in Goshen Indiana. The wedding was at Grace Community Church in Goshen, which wasn’t too far from the park. I asked the couple if we could use the park as the setting for their wedding portraits as well as the photos of the wedding party. The scenery was perfect, however we didn’t anticipate the heat and humidity that day. The temperature was above 90 degrees and the humidity was overwhelming. Once all the wedding party formals were done, I asked these two to hang out casually and just have fun in the shade, so they could cool off. I gave them a couple props, including this picture frame, and told them to just have fun and enjoy each other’s company. I positioned myself 30 feet away so that they would forget I was there. Within minutes they were laughing and having fun. Once they decided to have a kiss, my camera was ready and I took the shot!
First Dance at Lerner Theater
How Beautiful is that Dress
The wedding dress looks so awesome hanging in front of a window, I had to showcase it. I gathered all of the girls in front of the dress and snapped a few candid photos of them looking it over. Of course, the bride was happy too and I was able to capture the excitment!
Country Wedding at Fernwood Botanical Gardens
Here’s another great environmental portrait capturing the day as it unfolds. I keep my camera ready at all times because you never know when the moment will be just right for a candid photo of the bride and groom. As a professional photographer I’ve learned to anticipate the special moments when the magic happens. This is one of those moments that took place at Fernwood Botanical Gardens. The couple was having a great time when I looked up and noticed the lighting and background was perfect. A quick look at the camera and the photo was made!
Beautiful bridal portrait at Oliver Mansion
This wedding took place at the beautiful Oliver Mansion in downtown South Bend. As a standard part of my wedding day photography I usually like to spend 30 minutes with the bride to showcase everything about her. To make this photo, we decided to find a location that had beautiful, even lighting and we came across and area in the grass that was perfect. This bride was just a natural in front of the camera so I knew we were going to make stunning images. As a professional photographer, I’ve learned that certain poses are most flattering, and this is definitely one of them. After talking and laughing for a few minutes, she began to relax and be herself. Once I noticed a natural smile I clicked the shutter and the photo was made!
Portrait of the Groom
Often times as wedding photographers, we get so wrapped up in capturing all of the beauty of the bride and bridal party, that it's easy to overlook the groom! I was able to steal about 5 minutes with this future husband for a portrait. There was great natural light streaming through the window in the hotel room, so I decided to sit him down in front of it. The light was very directional, almost creating a split lighting patter on his face. The lighting and pose worked well to give the bride a nice picture of the man she was getting ready to marry!
Ring picture on Beautiful Flowers at Coppes Commons, Nappanee In
I absolutely love taking photos of details such as rings, shoes, dresses and table settings. This shot is taken with a special type of lens called a macro lens. This lens is made specifically for taking close up shots of small items. The lens has a special design which allows you to place the camera very close to items and still be able to focus on them. Photos of these items are very important because they show the flavor and personality of your wedding day. These pictures preserve a snapshot in time that becomes very important to future generations and allow you to pass along the stories of your family. Also, these photos look great in a wedding album as backgrounds or opening or closing page photos. This particular shot was taken using natural window light at Coppes Commons in Nappanee Indiana.
Bride pondering wedding at Oliver Mansion, South Bend, Indiana
This photo was taken in one of the upstairs rooms at the Oliver Mansion in South Bend, Indiana. The bridesmaids were in the middle of hair and makeup and everyone was relaxing and preparing for the ceremony. I noticed the beautiful light that was streaming in from the window so I decided to wait until the bride was close to the window and try and make some great photos. As a professional photographer I’ve learned to seek out window light whenever possible, as this type of light is usually very flattering and accentuates the natural beauty of the bride and wedding dress. What I really like about this shot is that it’s 100% genuine, it wasn’t staged, and it’s a true moment where this bride is in deep thought, presumably about the big event about to take place.
It’s great whenever one of my couples share a passion or interest together, and I try to encourage them to bring along anything related to this with them to the engagement shoot. With college football being something they loved together, this couple wrote their wedding date on the football, which I thought was just an awesome idea to be used for invitations, thank you cards, guest sign-in book, etc…. With them laying down together and joking back and forth, I waited for just the right moment to capture this genuinely happy shot!
Secret Whispers After First Look at Oliver Mansion, South Bend,
Another great candid moment! This moment was captured directly after a first look event and is a great example of how I capture moments using a photojournalistic approach. I staged this first look outside in good lighting in the stunning sunken garden at the Oliver Mansion in South Bend. I had the bride stationed on a stone pathway waiting for the groom to approach. The first look event is something that I think adds a great deal of anticipation and romance to the wedding day. Sometimes brides are reluctant to see their fiancé before the ceremony, however I truly think that it doesn’t diminish from the actual first look during the ceremony and the benefits in terms of time saving are much greater than the drawbacks. Once the first look was over, these two were just enjoying each other and interacting. Once I saw him close in for a secret whisper I knew there was a good picture to be made and this is the result!
Beautiful Bridesmaids Dresses
I really liked the way the blue dresses contrast with the dark gray background and skin tones of this image. The girls were wanting to show off their dresses so this seemed like an appropriate shot. I asked the girls to lineup with their arms wrapped around each other with, of course, the future bride in the center. The shot was taken under and overhang which provided some much needed open shade in the middle of the hot noon sun at Bertrand Park in Niles, Michigan. In the end, all of the girls loved the way it turned out!
Fun Together During First Dance at The Brick in South Bend, Indi
Wedding receptions can be so much because everyone is finally allowed to let loose, dance and generally have fun. This is a great example of photojournalistic or candid photography. I work hard to capture a set of photos that portray the spirit and energy of the day, so that the bride and groom have a storyline to look back at for many years to come. This was taken at a beautiful venue in South Bend called The Brick. Situated on the St. Joseph River, receptions here are light and airy and surrounded with white brickwork and tall ceilings. This particular shot was taken during the first dance between the bride and groom. They were having so much fun together that I knew a meaningful shot was going to be taken.
Engagement Sihouette on the Beaches of Lake Michigan
This photo was taken on the sandy beaches of Lake Michigan during an engagement photo session. This couple was excited to spend the afternoon walking the shoreline and having me capture this wonderful time in their lives for them. We had been shooting for about 2 hours and the sun was setting quickly at Silver Beach, Michigan. Drawing on my many years of experience as a professional wedding photographer, I knew this beautiful sunset could produce a romantic silhouette for them. I setup to expose properly for the sun, which put my couple as black outlines. After a couple shots, I knew I had something they would love. Lake Michigan and all the beaches along the coast line make great locations for engagements, weddings, romantic portraits and prime family photo opportunities.
Bride and Groom Photo at Shanklin Park, Goshen, IN
This was a fun shot from the beginning. The setting for this shot is in the beautiful Shanklin Park in Goshen, IN. This park is so beautiful that I knew I had to take this couple there to take some of their wedding photos. The park provides a wonderful mix of sun and shade along with scenic backdrops for beautiful group photography. As a wedding photographer with over 15 years of experience, I now have a substantial list of locations such as this all around the Michiana, South Bend and Mishawka areas, which allows for a wide variety of settings for any client request or theme. This couple was just getting used to being in front of the camera and was really beginning to enjoy themselves. I just kept snapping pictures and leaving them to themselves, and the next thing I know, she looks straight at me and I take this photo. This is such a great image because of the genuine love and affection that is evident between the two of them. The wedding day is absolutely one of the most important times in a couples life and it’s so important that these memories are preserved through photography.
Fun Poses with the Groomsmen
It's always a fun task to come up with unique and fun poses for the groom and his wedding party. The day was a bit soggy from 3 inches of rain, so I knew we had to find a dry spot in which to attempt a few pics of the guys. The hotel in Niles, MI where everyone was getting ready at had a nice looking overhang where we were able to capture a few pics. I figured the guys would be willing to try something different, so I had them crouch down come together for a quick shot. It turned out to be a unique way to show off this half of the bridal party!
The Toast Speech
Of course, almost all weddings have to have the toast and speech. This particular reception was no different. What was different was how fun this best mad was! The speech was just hilarious from beginning to end and the couple, as well as the wedding guests, all loved his heartfelt message to the bride and groom. I tried to capture a few of the good parts of the speech for them!
Bridesmaids Sharing Memories for the Bride in Goshen, Indiana
I really enjoy shooting wedding parties because they are always so much fun and everyone has fun doing participating. During most of my weddings I try to come up with fun ideas or activities that the wedding party can do to interact and make the photos unique. For this photo taken in Goshen, I decided to try chalkboards with chalk markers. I asked all the ladies to write a sentence describing how they met the bride. This is a great way for the bride to capture the memories of all of her bridesmaids and provides nice context with which to remember her wedding day years later.
Thank You Card Photo at Fernwood Botanical Gardens in Niles, Mic
I took this pic for this couple because they wanted something to use for their thank you cards. We were in the beautiful foliage at Fernwood Botanical Gardens in Niles, Michigan. This venue is a real gem around the Michiana area and is an easy drive from South Bend, Elkhart, Granger and most Northern Indiana cities. I really like the contrast of the wedding dress against the green and darker background. I will accommodate any special photo requests of all my clients and really enjoy working with you on these!