Santa Rosa Beach Wedding Photography

Destination Wedding PhotographyAmber and Matt met in Destin, Florida at the Boathouse Oyster Bar. Matt’s brother Jason is a talented musician who is a regular entertainer at the bar. The couple chose to get married on the beach. The Emerald Coast beaches are great for weddings from Navarre to Santa Rosa Beach.

Amber and Matt enjoyed a first look before the wedding. We used a spiral staircase to give a nice aesthetic on the moment. It worked out great! The look of love on Matt’s face was priceless! The decision whether or not to do a first look is deeply personal for our couples. Many couples believe the superstition that it is bad luck to see the bride before she walks down the aisle.  Some others want some private time to share with one another and release the pre-wedding jitters. When Amber and Matt did their first look, their flower girls handed them their wedding gifts to each other and they sat down enjoying each other before the wedding ceremony after seeing each other for the first time.

Here are four reasons we think couples should have a first look:

  • Your Images are Done Early: You have made the extra time before the wedding to do your images. Now you can get done with family pictures early and enjoy your reception!
  • It Relaxes You: You don’t have to worry about getting to the altar and not being able to tell your soulmate how wonderful they look or how happy you are to become their spouse. You can take the time and relax with your best friend and share a stolen moment together.
  • Emotions Will Still Show: Many brides fear he’ll lose “THAT” look as you walk down the aisle if he has already seen you in your dress. We can assure you that in the dozens and dozens of weddings we have photographed with first looks, there has never been a groom not show emotion as he sees the woman he loves walking towards the altar.
  • It Offers More Opportunities for Photographs: In doing a first look, you are also getting a larger variety of images from your wedding. In most cases, the first look is done at a different location than the formal images after the wedding. What a great way to get some variety!

Here’s hoping this will give you some food for thought when it’s time for you to decide on whether or not to do a first look.

The ceremony itself was on our beautiful white sand beaches with the glistening emerald green water as a backdrop. We hate to brag, but our beaches lend themselves as the perfect backdrop to any wedding and creates iconic destination wedding photography. Nothing says love like a warm soft breeze with the smell of sea salt and the sound of waves and ocean birds. The Emerald Coast is a true slice of paradise.

The Big Red Truck, a fun food truck fed guests while Jason Clark sang and everyone danced (including an impromptu choreographed YMCA by Matt and the bride’s male family members). Everyone had a wonderful time! Congratulations Amber and Matt!


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Senior Portrait Photography Toledo Style

fall senior portraitEveryone knows I not only love senior portraits, but I also love to travel. So, when Meg’s mom Jennifer called me to come to Toledo, Ohio to do her senior portraits at Wildwood Metropark I was thrilled!

Meg is interested in quite a few things. She loves hiking, playing her violin and tennis. So choosing Wildwood seemed like a decision that would fit all of our needs including some fun history lessons.

For example, did you know the 493-acre park is the former estate of Toledo’s Stranahan family?  Surrounded by natural habit, the stately home, now called the Manor House, played important roles in Toledo—and the park district’s—history.

A stunning home amid the glory of nature.

Built in 1938 by Champion Spark Plug magnate Robert Stranahan, the Manor House and the estate were purchased by Metroparks in 1975 following a vigorous citizens’ initiative to preserve the property, which was destined to become a housing development. The house, crafted in a Georgian colonial style, is open for free tours and decorated for the holidays, while portions of the home and other buildings serve as Metroparks administrative offices.

The main attraction at Wildwood is the system of trails that traverse varied terrain (a treat in the flatlands of northwest Ohio). The park is bisected by the Ottawa River and has sandy soil indicative of the rare Oak Openings Region.

The prairie community at Wildwood is home to many diverse and fascinating plants and animals. In the spring, it is a breeding site for ground-nesting birds such as rufous-sided towhees, field sparrows and American woodcock. Summer brings a spectacular display of prairie wildflowers and grasses, such as rough blazing star, big bluestem and Indian grasses, some reaching 10 feet high.

That’s some pretty fun and interesting stuff to add to beautiful scenery for a lovely young woman’s senior portraits.

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Navarre Beach Fall Wedding

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Kara and Adam’s Navarre Beach wedding was what most would consider a simple intimate elopement. With only family and close friends at hand, the couple strolled down the pristine white beaches of the Emerald Coast and tied the knot. I knew this was going to be a super sweet and wonderful wedding when Kara and her maid of honor could not stop dancing and laughing as they counted down the minutes until she was going to marry her best friend. The joy and laughter was contagious and soon all of us were gleefully counting down the minutes until the ceremony would begin. Now that’s what getting ready for your wedding should be like!

Kara’s dress was simply amazing. I cannot even begin to explain how sleeveless gowns do NOT look great on everyone despite the trend of the last 10 years. Kara’s form fitted dress had delicate lace sleeves that brought her whole look to a new level of elegant. That combined with the most delicate of bird cage veils finished the look of timeless grace and beauty.

Adam rounded his wedding look out with simple beach attire. The khaki shorts and linen shirt. They did look simply adorable together!

They decorated the beach house with Hemstitch Vintage Rentals decorations. They had everything from vintage mason jars to wonderful rustic wooden items and shabby chic furniture for a quaint look. It really raised the bar on the reception decorations.

Unusual circumstances brought Kara, Adam and I together for her wedding. Her original wedding photographer had an issue (not an act of God or an emergency) that prevented them from shooting the couple’s wedding. Kara and Adam were not even aware that the only photographer they would have was the second shooter until less than 24 hours before the wedding. They were beside themselves when they found out. Please to all wedding photographers, things beyond our ability to control come up sometimes. Please be fair with your clients and refund their money or provide an adequate backup if they do.

Now with that said…Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Felty!!! I hope you enjoy your images for many love filled decades to come!
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Beach Photography on the Emerald Coast

The emerald coastIt’s the perfect season for beach photography along the Emerald Coast! Can’t you just see it now?  Visit one of the Emerald Coast cities which include Destin and Fort Walton Beach and are simply beautiful for those fall visitors who want to live like a local for a week with less crowded beaches and lingering summer weather.

Most of our neighboring states have fall break, if you live in one of these states, take the opportunity to visit the beach if for nothing else but to see the most awe inspiring sunsets of the year. It is also a time to try some of our most popular restaurants like The Red Bar, Bud and Alleys and Harbor Docks without the several hour wait you may experience at our peak season during the summer.

A random fact you may not know is there are 13 beach access points within the city limits of Destin. Eleven are city-owned facilities, one site is owned by the county and one site is owned by the state. Parking is limited at the city beach access points and many only provide access to the beach.

For people without children October also has some fun activities. From October 5-9th you have Fudpucker’s Beachside Bar & Grill’s Four Player Volleyball Tournament is beach volleyball at its best. Plus, there is a volleyball clinic, players’ party and golf tournament as well. Cash and other prizes will be awarded. If riding your Harley is more your style, then come on down Oct 20-23rd for The Emerald Coast Harley-Davidson Emerald Coast Earthquake is held at The Boardwalk on Okaloosa Island.
Events include live music all day, bike shows, Miss Emerald Coast Earthquake Bikini Contest, charity poker runs, vendors, food and drink specials at along the Boardwalk. Thousands of bikers enjoying the crisper fall air while riding along the beach.

No matter what you are here to do, we hope we see you for some great beach photography!! Give us a call at 850-699-3403 to set up your appointment.Beach portraitcouple photography30a-beach-photography_0004family photographylove your childtoddler photographysunset photographythe emerald coastdestin florida photographymother

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Solaris Wedding Photography

Sandestinwedding photography #destinflSeth and Rachel had a multi-part wedding photography session. It began along the Emerald Coast at dawn  and ended up that afternoon with a wedding upon the Solaris. I loved it because it gives the viewer two different looks for the wedding. Something you don’t normally have for sure. It was also really a ton of fun because one of Rachel’s bridesmaids had never been in the Gulf of Mexico and ran quickly after our sunrise shoot into the water to frolic for a moment. I know everyone was exhausted from the rehearsal dinner festivities, but they put a great face on it and we made some beautiful wedding formals that morning.

The Solaris is a dinner cruise yacht based out of Sandestin, a Gulf and bayside resort in Destin. Shortly after pulling out from the dock, we began the wedding ceremony on the roof of the boat. The weather was perfect for a destination wedding. Sunny but not to hot with a little wind. After the wedding Rachel, Seth and their guests went into the Solaris for dinner and dancing. They finished out the evening with a sparkler exit at the Village at Baytowne Wharf on the dock.

Congratulations Seth and Rachel and we hope you love their wedding images from their Destin, Fl destination wedding!
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