It’s funny.  A lot of families are really really good at remembering to do family photos when their kids are little.  And then…. not so much. They hit those awkward teen years where they’d really rather be *anywhere* else than with their family and then, well…. it seems the next photos of them with family just might be at their wedding!

Some families get it. They call me when they have a ‘kid’ going off to college and they just want one more afternoon to be close, to hug and to smile and to remember this time in their life before they went off on their big adventures.  This is one of those families.  Susan adores her kids, and with one having just left for college and the other now a senior in high school – she wanted to make sure to really soak this in.

Remember to continue to reach out to your kids even when they aren’t your ‘littles’ anymore – remember to make time for afternoons like this in the park – even if I’m not there to see it.

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Get married in an old bank, turned venue / art museum?  Well sure. Why not. In fact it’s REALLY COOL. So, the 21c Museum & Hotel in Downtown Durham used to be a bank, you  know – cherry paneled walls, high ceilings, marble floors and a VAULT.  yep. I said vault.  And then on the 2nd floor it’s all white and light and airy with big windows. Like, is this the coolest venue ever? Just might be.

And I was lucky enough to photograph a wedding here.  We spent the morning getting ready upstairs in the hotel, and then the ceremony was in the ballroom, followed by cocktail hour in the gallery space and finally the reception back in the ballroom.  Y’all, I can’t even – the chandaliers, the big velvet curtains – so much cool.

Seriously – thank you so much for including me in this amazing day – you all are the best!

Wedding Vendor Team:

Venue – 21c Museum & Hotel Durham

Dress: Enzoani

Tuxes

Officiant: Lance Mitchell with Summit Church

Catering: 21C Museum Hotel Durham

Cake: Publix

Florist:  Tre Bella

Stationary: Minted

DJ: Damien Maas

Bonus to having your wedding in an art gallery….

I’m sorry  (no I’m not) –  I LOVE this dress shot.There it is – a mimosa and a phone. Yep. It’s how we do weddings 🙂First looks are my favorite.  I love the quiet emotion, the shared moment without all of their family, friends, guests… when they can remember what this day is really all about.And can we just talk about the light in the ballroom?  Love.I told you there was a VAULT!  Look! A Vault!  seriously one of the weirder and cooler places I’ve made portraitsThe lights are amazing. amazing. So, you probably notice the pink penguin there behind them.  It’s art. go with it.

 

 

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lots of families here in the Triangle area have homes on the shores of Lake Gaston, about an hour north of here.   As I love photographing in new places, when one of these families asked if I could do their family portraits at their lake house, I was all over it!  We did the ‘nice’ portraits first – you know – everyone looking at the camera, well dressed etc – and then we had the real fun.  everyone changed into their bathing suites and we played on the dock, jumped in the water and took the boat out for a spin.  I have to say, that probably my absolute favorite images though from the whole morning were of the kids after they had changed, waiting for their mom & dad, and wrestling on the couch (like siblings do).  Those are the photos that tell me what life is really like in their house – those are the moments they will treasure as they grow up.

thanks guys for a fun morning!  Next time I’ll bring a waterproof rig and maybe I’ll get in the water too!

These. OMG. These.  To me, these just say ‘lake life’ and ‘summer’ and ‘sibling’

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I know I’ve said it before, but engagement sessions are really some of my most favorite thing to photograph. Think about it – you have two people madly in love, happy to be together and you get to just go hang out and make cool art with them. How could this not be fantastic?

Phuong and Michael were planning a wedding in New Orleans and already had all of their vendors lined up for that (too bad!  I would have loved to go to NOLA!) but they found me for their engagement photos so it’s all good.  As I always offer two locations for every engagement session, and this was in the middle of summer (so think, HOT) we figured at least one of the locations should be indoors  -you know, for sanity.  She has a pretty modern classic aesthetic so we chose the new Hunt Library on the Campus of NCSU. This place is so cool – I have to go back!  It’s big and bright, lots of cool pops of color, great architectural lines – really just everything you could want.  Then we ventured out to the JC Raulston Arboretum for a softer location in the late afternoon sun.  Oh how I love the late afternoon sun.

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Usually when I book a wedding, we plan an engagement session – a time when the couple and I can go out, get to know each other, visit some of their favorite places and make some great images.  Well, Emma had another idea.  She wanted to know if instead I could come and be a part of their wedding shower luncheon – so I could meet all of their most favorite people and photograph a day and event  that would really mean something to them. Of Course!   I also loved that instead of a ‘bridal’ shower – they had a ‘wedding’s shower. I mean, why shouldn’t he get to have some fun too?!

One of my most favorite things to photograph is people enjoying themselves – you can’t fake that kind of real joy – and when you put people in a room with all of their favorites, feed them amazing food (thanks Fearrington House!) and give them gifts? Yeah, there’s really joy there.

So that’s what we did!  Then after lunch we spent just about 30 minutes walking the property for some downtime and made some portraits.  All in all, I’d say it was great use of their ‘engagement’ session!

I know their cheesy, but sometimes a good party game is just what you need. Love these toilet paper dresses!See that cat there?  That’s Cheddar. Ok, it’s only a stand-up of the REAL cheddar, who of course isn’t allowed into a nice restaurant. But they LOVE their Cheddar-cat so naturally, he had to at least be represented.OMG. If you haven’t eaten at the Fearrington House – you are SO missing out.  This was incredible.  Delectable, scrumptious and any other word you can think of to mean, ‘yummy’ .With lunch and the festivities over, we headed outside for some portraits….Emma will tell you that she’s  a little self-concious in front of the camera – but as long as she was there with Minh, she was totally fine 🙂 Thanks y’all for a great wedding shower!

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