Jason and Katie got married on a gorgeous Saturday back in May. I had traveled to Minnesota the weekend before for Brett and Kelly's wedding, so I met Katie only a few days before her big day.
I'm such an awkward person, so I always worry when I photograph a wedding without really knowing the couple beforehand, but Jason and Katie were so perfect. They were so thoughtful, so relaxed, and just so present. When we were planning out the timeline for the day, Katie had set aside a chunk of time for not only portraits for the two of them, but for just time for the two of them. Time for them to relax, reflect, talk, take it all in, and just enjoy each others company. And I absolutely loved it. Wedding days can be so hectic, not only for the bride and groom, but for the families and bridal party, especially when there's a list of pictures that the couple wants to have. Scheduling time to relax isn't always a priority, or even a thought, when planning out the day. But doing this is what creates time for the photographers to capture the candids (which, by the way, are my absolute favorite pictures to take.) And scheduling down time means that the family, the bridal party, and the bride and groom, have time to soak it all in and cherish the moments, without having to worry if they're supposed to be somewhere or be doing something. Long rant, I know, but moral of the story? Jason and Katie did an amazing job of taking time to make their day, their day.
I'll try to keep my words to a minimum for the rest of the post, but prewarning, I tend to talk about things I love. And I loved this day.
I love homes on wedding days. I love when they're overflowing with family and love and excitement. I love seeing old wedding photos on display; reminders of years and generations of family and love. And I love how the wedding day details get temporarily mixed into it all. Like these bouquets, set above the Bibles brought to Sunday School for years.
This too. Church songs in the living room, sung by generations. A perfect reminder of what the day is all about.
Further up, there's a picture of Katie's Grandma at the kitchen table with a quilt. When I arrived in the morning, she was pulling stitches out of it, and I was curious, but I didn't want to be intrusive, so I didn't ask what was happening. But when she finished, Katie explained to me that the quilt was made out of old shirts from Jason's dad, who had passed away quite a few years prior. She was temporarily removing a square from the quilt, so that Jason could keep it with him throughout the day. So, so meaningful, and so thoughtful.
This worked out so perfect. The Harmala's neighbors have a perfect little piece of land, so we didn't have to go very far for the rest of the days pictures. The bridal party and family could come and go when they were needed, and drive time wasn't a problem. And the property was beautiful, which is always a bonus :)
Abbey (my second shooter for the day) and I met Jason to do last minute prep and get set up before the first look. I loved that he brought one of his groomsmen with him.
This was their time. Katie had let me know that she wanted to involve Jason's dad in the day, and this is one of the ways that happened. We had brought a white balloon down to where they were doing their first look, and when Jason joined, Katie told him it was so that they could write a note, and send it up to Paul.
Earlier that morning, Katie's dad had let her know that it had been exactly 25 years since his dad, Katie's grandpa, had passed, so they included a note to him as well, before sending the messages up to Heaven.
These parts of the day are so, so important to me. I never want to be invasive or intrusive during the special moments, but if pictures are requested, I want to take them as tastefully as possible. So Abbey and I took photos through our zoom lenses, while staying out of site, before taking a break and visiting amongst ourselves. Both of us needed the break anyway, as we were both tearing up behind our cameras.
Same thing with these next photos. Jason and Katie had written each other letters to read aloud. Abbey and I were both trying to stay out of sight behind trees, and stay far enough away that we couldn't hear what was being said, but their emotions spoke volumes. Behind my camera, I was smiling when they laughed, and tearing up when they cried.
The girls arrived from the house before the guys showed up, so everyone had time to relax before we started portraits.
I love when the bridal party does more than just tolerate taking pictures, and instead throws in their own ideas. I had no idea this picture was happening until I turned around to them all coming down the hill, arm and arm.
We grabbed a few more bridal portraits before the guys showed up.
Thank you, Jason and Katie, for giving me the honor of capturing your day! I so enjoyed myself, and I wish you both the best!
And thank you, Abbey, for helping me out!