Amy & Mike's Backyard Indiana Wedding

posted on: October 31, 2007

Amy & Mike had a fabulous backyard wedding at Amy's parent's home in Roanoke, IN. I think what I love most about home weddings is that everything is personal, anything goes, and everyone feels free to kick back and relax. This was definitely the case for Amy & Mike, as well as their family and friends!

I'm going to warn you up front about the gratuitous number of kid shots from this wedding. I couldn't help it!! There were many times when the adults were just standing around talking, and if I tried to get a candid shot, they'd turn and smile at me until I took the picture and went away. But the kids... the kids didn't care about who I was or what I was doing because they were so focused on what they were interested in at that moment. Hence, many of my favorite candid moments just happen to include children.

What I love about the image above... many wedding photographers would zoom in on Amy looking out the window - such a classic candid moment to capture with the beautiful light and details of her hair and dress, but with an image like that- we would think she was in a quiet moment alone. So, I decided to tell more of the story here because the fact is, Amy was rarely ever alone that day and there was always a kid or two running around! As a side note... a few photojournalists told me to never shoot a wide vertical image, but I can't help it... there are times when I feel like a good composition demands it!

Amy is one of the funnest people to be around! She has fun no matter who she's with or where she is, and when her and Mike are together, they both radiate happiness.

I think it's always a good sign when a couple is relaxed enough to laugh during their ceremony!

Zoe, Amy's daughter, was a bit of an emotional roller coaster that day. Zoe's at that age where she wants mom all to herself and thought that having a step-dad would get in the way of that. Even though Mike had been in their life for a while, she felt this would make it all different. I think I was a similar age when my parents divorced and I remember how emotional I was about things changing. After Amy talked with her, Zoe started to feel better and spent the rest of the night celebrating with everyone else.

They had such a beautiful color palette of light purples and soft blues, with coordinating hydrangea and paper lanterns! They even had purple porta-potties! PURPLE porta-potties!!!

Kids + animals = fun. If you look really closely in the above image you can see the baby bird that the kids found and then followed all over the yard.

Amy's friends from school were quite fascinated with how she had "grown" over the years!

Sure, I took the posed & smiling shot- but I thought this one was more interesting. ;)

I think he's trying to say "I love you" - but Amy can't see behind her back... luckily I can. ;)

Mixology 101: Grenadine + Sprite = Shirley Temple

I love how something as simple as a piece of tulle can send a kid into a whirlwind of imagination and play. I wonder who she was in her mind at that very moment.

As night went on, Amy decided to slip into something a little more comfortable, and a little more party-friendly.... and I think Zoe finally realized that she wasn't loosing her mom, just gaining a dad. Thank you so much Amy & Michael! I feel so lucky that you found me and chose me to capture this day in your lives!! I hope that you have many more years of happiness and good times ahead of you- no matter where life takes you.

Film Noir Boudoir

posted on: October 30, 2007

Film Noir Boudoir

This Film Noir Boudoir was a birthday gift for her husband! This was so much fun to photograph because there was a bit of an editorial element to it- as if they were acting out different scenes of a story. Funny enough, she doesn't actually smoke but she wanted to do an image with her smoking in the foreground with messy hair and him laying in bed in the background- suggesting a very classic Hollywood scene. The hardest part was getting the perfect stream of smoke to come out of her lips without covering her face or getting too far away from her lips! I think everyone who's done a boudoir session with me can attest to the fact that it's more work than they thought it was going to be - but the results are always AWESOME.... of course, I may be just a BIT biased, HA!! ;)


posted on: October 29, 2007


Just a quick note to say that I've been traveling and shooting constantly for the past four days with no more than a total of 12 hours sleep. I'm a little pooped. Thank you for understanding while I work to catch up on everything!

Also, it looks like we may not be going on our anniversary cruise because of a "surprise" tropical storm. Any suggestions for last minute alternatives?

Boudoir Sessions- Thanksgiving Weekend

posted on: October 26, 2007

I've had a lot of requests for boudoir sessions recently, with people asking me if I'll be in their metropolitan area any time soon. While I'll be spending Thanksgiving Thursday and Friday with family, I'll have time that Saturday and Sunday for a few boudoir sessions, the only problem is, I don't know what city I'll be in!

You see, every year we have this dilemma about where to go for Thanksgiving. Alex's family is in Missouri, and my family is in Michigan, and we live right smack dab in the middle - 7.5 hours either way. So- to help solve the dilemma of where we should go this Thanksgiving, I'm going to leave it up to YOU to tell me what city you'd like me to do a boudoir shoot in! Detroit & Chicago will take us to my family in Michigan, and St. Louis & Kansas City will take us to Alex's family in Missouri. So, what city would you or a friend want your boudoir session in? Or maybe you're one of our family or friends who just wants to swing the vote in your favor! Whatever the case may be please vote below, and feel free to pass this along to your friends!

If you're seriously interested in a boudoir session, visit my Film Noir Boudoir site to read more about it and then send me an email letting me know your location. It might be possible that I'll be doing a session later this year or early next year in your area, so even if I don't end up in your city this time around, it may be possible in the future.

Sarah & Ed Engagement

posted on: October 25, 2007


I have to admit that I get a little jealous whenever I photograph an engagement session for a couple who's wedding I won't get to photograph! It's like I get a little crush on the people while I photograph them and I then I wish that I could be their only photographer! I know it's my own fault because I can't be everywhere at once... sadly. Sarah & Ed are one of those couples that I won't get to see walk down the aisle, but I'm so glad that we got to do an engagement session together!

They picked the perfect setting for their engagement session - right at their own home in Brighton, MI (which also happens to be very close to my own family in Michigan!) The image above is exactly what I saw as I pulled up to the house. They were both sitting outside on their porch- Sarah with a glass of wine and Ed with a glass of beer. It was picture perfect and I didn't have to change a thing!


They had the perfect porch for pictures! Why? Because there was a big, beautiful skylight over the porch swing, in order to let more light into the living room! A skylight, oudoors, on a porch?! That's definitely getting filed in my "dream home" file. ;-)

We tried to do "American Gothic", but Sarah couldn't stop laughing!

Max was such a sweetie, and so well behaved! Definitely one of the better dogs I've worked with!

I noticed they had a clothes line in the backyard, and most people would have taken it out if they weren't using it, so I asked if they actually use it? When Ed said that he usually hangs his hockey gear out there after practice, I thought it would be fun to include a few more personal touches. Doesn't it look like Sarah could wear his jersey as a long dress?! Too funny!


Sarah made a special request that I get a picture of her chickens... funky chickens!


One of the things we talked about as we were planning the engagement session, was this 1970 Bronco that they like to camp out of and take for rides! The above picture was done using a pretty extreme technique in Lightroom, which was recently featured on the Lightroom Killer Tips podcast (I love the Photoshop guys - they've taught me a lot over the years!) It's almost illustrative and definitely grungy.. I certainly wouldn't use it a lot... but I thought it would be interesting here - what do you think?

Check out that embroidered seat cover baby, yeah! What is it that makes cars seem sexy no matter what condition they're in? I'm still trying to figure that out! How about dirty toes... are they sexy? HA! ;)


Sarah & Ed - thank you so much for inviting me over and sharing a little slice of your life with me! Best wishes for your wedding day while I try not to be jealous of the "other" photographer!

How to Beat Post-Wedding Depression...

posted on: October 24, 2007

Here's a little something to cheer you up if you're experiencing the post-wedding blues!! Press play to watch..

Check out the Bride-O-Rama Blog for more post- and pre-wedding tips, or to submit your own!! And if you've just fallen in love with Giulia Rozzi, visit her website at and see more of her message board videos at The Message Board Blog.

Eileen: Pin-Up Girl

posted on: October 23, 2007


I've been working on a fairly *secret* pin-up girl project with another photographer (to be named when we have the website up and running!) Eileen was one of the first brave girls who made the trek from Chicago down to Terre Haute for her very own pin-up session!


Everyone has their own reasons for doing boudoir or pin-up and I think Eileen's was especially cool- her fiancé is going to get a tattoo of her as a pin-up girl! How hot is that?! They're both artists/graphic desigerns so I REALLY appreciate them coming to me for photography! After-all, they totally could have just drawn her! I don't think I'm allowed to show you the one that will end up as the tattoo... but it's HOT!!

Here's my favorite out-take of the day! I love how anti-cheesecake this is! Thank you so much Eileen!! You were fabulous!!

For future pin-up session opportunities check out the following links based on location:
East Coast Pin Up Girls
Midwest Pin Up Girls

Faye & Brian's Atheneum Detroit Wedding

posted on: October 19, 2007

If there were a prize for the most Detroit-themed wedding, Faye & Brian would definitely win!! Which is pretty interesting when you consider they're now living in Chicago, where we also did their engagement session. Being from Detroit myself, I have nothing but love for the "D".

I couldn't help but notice the awesome view from their hotel room at the Atheneum in the heart of Greektown, which made for a unique Detroit-themed dress shot!

Does the picture above scare anyone else as much as it scares me?! ACK! I'm such a wimp when it comes to sharp objects! I think Heather did a fabulous job with Faye's hair & makeup - she looked flawless!

Their ceremony was held at the beautiful and historic Saints Peter & Paul Jesuit Church, which is apparently Detroit's oldest building which has been in continuous use since 1848! They certainly knew how to create a beautiful building with plenty of gorgeous natural light. I wish all churches were lit so naturally well!!

I love the picture below- Brian looks like a man on a mission! The angle and composition of the other guys kinda makes it seem like something out of a Bond flim, and their expressions only add to the mystery and suspense of the action... OK, so maybe I put a little too much imagination into my images. ;-)

I think they had the biggest smiles I've ever seen coming down the aisle!! Just pure joy and happiness!

If you've ever lived in or near Detroit, than you've probably been through the underwater Tunnel to Windsor, Canada at least once. So, how appropriate that the wedding party would make a stop at the Tunnel Liquor Shoppe for some extra libations after the ceremony!!

I actually have a few pictures of this bridesmaid "misbehaving", so I'm glad someone finally put her in her place!! HA!! I'm totally kidding, because SHE'S the one who asked him to handcuff her!!! Poor innocent bicycle cop had no idea what he was getting into when he stopped to congratulate Faye & Brian. ;-)

I rarely show posed stuff on my blog, but here's your evidence that I actually do poses when requested and given extra time to get creative. Faye wanted to include as many Detroit landmarks as possible in the time we had between the ceremony & reception, so we headed to Hart Plaza on Detroit's riverfront for some fun shots...

The Spirit of Detroit statue is one of my favorite landmarks because the statue gets to wear his very own Detroit team jersey during playoffs. After all, Detroit does have the best sports teams and fans in the world... what can I say except... Deeeeeeeetroit!!! (Are you sick of me yet? Oh wait.. there's more!!)

It's so typical to see old cars cruising around Detroit in better-than-mint condition, so of course we had to include one in their wedding photos! Just another little something that makes the motor city so fabulous and full of character.

Faye & Brian even brought the SOUND of Motown to their wedding! Actually, I've noticed that Motown is making a huge comeback with a lot of live bands... now when will the DJs catch on?

Something very interesting happened THREE times on Faye & Brian's wedding day, and anytime something happens three times in three different places, I think it's worth mentioning because it's crossed the line from coincidence into just plain strange. The first time it happened was at the church, the sound system was acting up during the ceremony, cutting in and out and giving weird feedback. Then it happened while we were riding around in the limo bus- the radio kept cutting in and out on a station with a really good signal and speakers that seemed to be perfectly fine. The final kicker was during Faye & Brian's first dance. They had taken dance lessons and perfectly choreographed their first dance to Coldplay's "Yellow", but SEVERAL times during their first dance, the sound system completely cut out and because they were in the middle of their choreography, they had to stop and wait for it to start again!! If that's not just plain weird, well... I don't know what is. There must've been a lot of magnetic energy between these two to disrupt the sound system EVERYWHERE THEY WENT on their wedding day!!! In any case, they handled the interruptions of their first dance very well, and everyone gave them a HUGE round of applause when they finally made it to the end!!

In Detroit, every neighborhood has at least one or two Coney Islands that serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner all day long as well as delicious beefy chili coney dogs! When you've grown up on Detroit's coney, no other coney dog compares! What a special end of the night treat to bring the Coney dogs to the party for their late night guests!!

Brian planned a huge surprise for Faye which fit perfectly with their Detroit wedding! He arranged for Paws- the Detroit Tiger's mascot, to join the party near the end of the evening! Faye was ecstatic and the guests were thrilled to have a celebrity guest at the reception!! Paws must've had his picture taken with everyone there!

Faye & Brian - your wedding was soooo much fun, and I'm sure I'm not the only one who who thinks that!! I hope that every day of your life together just gets better and better and that you'll never stop having fun together!! Thank you for making me your wedding photographer!!

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