A Visit to Old Town Scottsdale

Destination weddings are always really exciting. I mean, I had never been to Arizona and had no future plans to visit. Really, I didn't even know what to expect besides cacti and a whole lot of desert! (no, not dessert. although we had a little of that, too - I'll get to that later.) But once I was slated to shoot Susan & Taylor's wedding, I realized how cool of a job being a wedding photographer really is. I mean, there are a ton of interesting jobs out there, but for me, I would have never, ever had this fun adventure without pursuing what I love to do.  

So with my second photographer Mekina as the best travel buddy out there, we spent our down time exploring our hotel, The Saguaro, which I mispronounced the entire time we were there, and Old Town Scottsdale. I kept saying a little too excitedly how colorful everything was and that our hotel made it feel as if we were in Palms Springs in the 1950's. Any type of sun and pool time for a east-coaster in February is just what the doctor ordered, so Mekina and I were on cloud nine with a little extra vitamin-D in our veins. 

Some of our favorite things we did were morning coffee at four till four, the most insane breakfast I have ever had at Daily Dose (we ate there TWICE), tacos & margs at Cien Agaves, and ice cream sundaes at The Sugar Bowl. We worked out in the mornings, went antiquing at Sevale Flowers and Antiques...oh yea and we shot a wedding! 

If you are looking for a great place to visit, I would 100% recommend Scottsdale - I will definitely be going back there as soon as I can! 

(These snapshots are a mixture of film shot on my contax 645 with fuji400H film, and digitals shot by myself and Mekina on Mekina's camera - all edited by me! We had fun trading off with one camera as we explored the town)

Love & Light Photographs Rebrand: Video Shoot

It all started with an idea. (Hence, the light bulb... get it!?) The idea that waking up and getting ready with your favorite people in the world plus the anticipation of seeing the one you are about to marry is just about the best feeling there is. I swear, if I could bottle it up this feeling, I totally would. So when it came to creating a video for my rebrand, I wanted to show it rather than talk about it. From the bride's perspective, not the photographers. A styled getting ready shoot complete with pretty lighting, gorgeous details to photograph and champagne. Lots of champagne.

So when I explained my far-fetched idea to the insanely talented Dana of between sleep and awake, she was game. I have to stop here for a second to thank her for taking on this project. Through all the phone sessions, brainstorms and working together she has become a great friend of mine and I could not have pictured ANYONE else being able to capture my vision like Dana did. Both our styles go so seamlessly together, and I was blown away by her ideas and execution of my little idea. Look at her go!

With a kickass AirBnb loft in Manhattan secured, (those chic details! that window light! still swooning...)  the team continued to grow. Seriously, how could one girl be so lucky? Two of my second shooters Krystal and Asher signed up as bridesmaids, dresses by twobirds bridesmaids were lent to me by bestie Dayna (who was using them for her wedding two months later!) When my sister-in-law and wedding day assistant Katelyn said she was free to help, I breathed a huge sigh of relief knowing I was in really great hands.  How cute are they? Go L&L Team!

And now, how to even begin thanking all the talent that came together? Alanna Janes was on Hair & Makeup for our actress Courtney (whom I went to Syracuse University with!) and genius Anne of Blade NYC Florals and Events reached inside my brain and created the most perfect bouquet for the shoot. Still one of my all-time favorites, Anne (besides my own wedding bouquet, of course). Paige of Dovetail Vintage Rentals lent me some do-dads to style the brunch tablescape and Jenny Sanders, who designed my logo, graciously sent a watercolor invitation suite for me to style as well...the list goes on and on.

And to top off all the coolness that was happening, THE Gabriella of Gabriella New York allowed Courtney and I to come in and hand-pick a gown for the shoot. WHAT?! Is this real life? I really did almost faint when I received the sweetest email from the Gabriella team (shout out to Kat Harris for all your advice & wisdom on this topic).

In the appointment, we fell in love with San Francisco designer Amy Kuschel's Avedon gown instantly. Not only did it fit Courtney like a glove, we felt like the girl getting ready in that loft would be all about Manhattan glamour and a vintage silhouette. Plus, that shoulder detail! Little did I know at the time was that this dress was inspired by fashion & portrait photog Richard Avedon who said, "Real people move. They bear with them the element of time. It is this fourth dimension that I try to capture in a photograph." I think this detail is pretty cool because I try to capture emotion and movement in my images as well. So this dress was meant to be, obviously. Okay, nerd alert! Moving on... 

It really didn't hit me that we had captured my vision from beginning to end on one cold February morning until the whirlwind stopped that afternoon. I was really in shock that it all had happened (not unlike the day of your wedding!) and that it came together so beautifully. The icing on top was a stellar feature on Style Me Pretty that May followed by the countless brides who saw the feature and reached out, saying they connected with the video instantly. Goosebumps, guys. If just one bride out there sees this labor of love and gets excited and inspired for her getting ready experience, then I am one very happy lady. 

And of course, here is the final product that you can find over on the website or below! Wold love to hear what you think in the comments below! I will be posting some of my favorite photos from this loft shoot very soon :)