Taylor + Chris

My cousin, Taylor, traveled down from Ohio a couple of weekends ago to marry her sweetheart, Chris in beautiful Helen, Georgia.  The next day Taylor wanted to get some extra photos with her husband and immediate family.  Unfortunately, Mother Nature did not want to cooperate with us and we had a MONSOON.  Luckily for us, my aunt found this adorable chapel in Nicholson to use and even better, the rain stopped for five minutes while we were shooting so they could come out from under the overhangs to get some shots with the beautiful scenery! Here are just a couple of my favorites!IMG_7300_L

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4 Advantages to Having a First Look at Your Wedding

What is a first look?  A “first look” puts a twist on the traditional wedding and allows the bride and groom a special, private moment to see see each other before the ceremony.

1.  Get to the Party Sooner:  Having a first look allows you to get all, or at least the majority of your posed photos and family photos out of the way before the ceremony.  This means you can head to the reception immediately after the ceremony to spend time with your guests and show your moves on the dance floor!  If you still have all of your family portraits, plus wedding party portraits and finally portraits of you and your significant other, either you keep your guests waiting at the reception or you are rushed for photos.

2.  More Time for Photos and Better Photos: You will also have MORE time for all of the photos you’d love to have together!  With a first look you have more time together during the course of the day, which means you have more photos together.   And again, you’d be taking them before the ceremony and have a much more relaxed setting, which leads to the fact that you would be able to hand pick a location rather than simply having it where you say your I Do’s.  See a gorgeous cotton field behind the church?  Perfect.  Or a giant oak tree across the field from where the altar is set up? Let’s go!

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3.  A Special Moment: A first look is an incredibly special experience that only happens once.  It allows you to have an intimate moment to fully embrace your emotions in a whirlwind of a day .  Your first look is able to be about the TWO of you. (And you’re also able to talk, laugh and cry freely without worry!)  All the while I’m standing far away with a long lens, so y’all can really soak in the moment.  And from then on you get to spend the day together!  Without a first look often times couples don’t get a moment by themselves until after they leave the reception.
4.  Calm Nerves: Let’s be serious, your wedding day is magical, memorable, wonderful…and a tad bit nerve-wrecking.  Whether you’re worried about the caterer being late, the flower girl not cooperating, or the weather — there are a lot of things going on in your mind.  So why be separated from your significant other, the one you WANT to be spending the day with and who can probably ease your nerves best of all?  Brides and grooms that choose to have a first look are overall more relaxed when it’s ceremony time.
In the end it comes down to YOU and your significant other.  It’s your wedding day so you should always choose what you feel best fits your needs!

Tim & Lauren//Wedding and Engagement

I’m so honored that Tim and Lauren invited me on their beautiful love story!  I typically know and work with couples for months before their wedding and get to know them on a personal level.  Although Tim, Lauren and I only met about a week before their ceremony, I felt like I’d know them for years!  They are such kind hearted people and a joy to be around.  Lauren’s daughter, Helen, was also with us for the engagement session and big part of their wedding and allowed me to photograph her polar bears!  (A first for me =))

We did their engagement photos at the always beautiful State Botanical Garden and a few days later was their family oriented ceremony.

The engagement…

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And the wedding…

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