Archive for Ceremony

I’ve been a bit behind on posting weddings to my blogs due to just how busy we’ve been at the end of Summer going into Fall. When you are covering 2-3 events a weekend they tend to pile up a bit. Since I just finished photographing my last scheduled wedding of the year I’ll have a little breathing room before the holidays to catch up and post some of my favorite photos from these events!

This mid-August wedding was a great event that I was able to work with my husband, Michael who was also the couple’s DJ! It has been a while since we’ve done an event together so it was fun to be able to work with him again. One of the great reasons we love working together is because we understand how each other work! He’s always there to make any announcements that I need to make sure that people are where they need to be for pictures and I’m always working with his reception timeline in mind to make sure that we get photos done in a timely manner so they can get on to enjoying their reception! It’s a win, win for us and because of that we even offer a bit of a discount for booking us together! Yeah!

I covered the most weddings I have ever had the privilege to photograph or videotape at Willow Ridge in one year and it was an absolute treat being able to see so many happy couples get married at this lovely facility! Gregory & Lawrence have one of the most affordable venues with mountain views that is close to the city! If you are planning a wedding you need to check them out! Or at the very least search my blog posts for “Willow Ridge Manor” so you can see all of the fabulous photos I’ve recently taken there!

Leanna & Thomas had a smaller event, but it was just perfect for them! Close friends and family gathered to see this couple unite on a beautiful warm Summer evening! Thomas’ dad serenading them towards the end of dinner and it was a lovely personalized touch to their event. I also really loved their color scheme! Not an usual choice, but it was really beautiful! Enjoy the photos!

 

Here’s to all of the vendors that made this day possible:

Venue – Willow Ridge Manor

Caterer – Rocky Mountain Catering

Disc Jockey – Digital DJ

Bakery: Mulberries Cake Shop

Florist – Lehrer’s Flowers

Officiant – Rev. Scott Awbrey

Photo & Video – Crystaline Photography and Video

 

Another beautiful End of Summer/Fall wedding at Willow Ridge Manor! Sarah & Brandon shared their vows at this amazing venue with close friends and family.

Venue – Willow Ridge Manor

Caterer – Rocky Mountain Catering

Officiant – Rev. Scott Awbrey

Video – Crystaline Photography and Video

It had been quite a few years since I’ve covered an event at Brittany Hill and I was excited to get back there especially after I had heard that Wedgewood Weddings had taken over running the facility and had done some significant upgrades to it. The venue used to run as both a restaurant and banquet hall, but now it is running almost exclusively for weddings and other events. It’s great because they have created two large preparation rooms for both the bride & groom with everything you need to getting ready for your big day. They have a location on a patio that overlooks the Denver skyline for ceremonies which is also right next to a room for indoor ceremonies in case of bad weather so there’s no down time to switch between the two. And a large reception hall with beautiful chandeliers. I really like the improvements. The venue really fits what the modern couple are looking for to host a wedding at.

Carlos and Stacie were an amazing couple to work with as well. Since they were getting married a little later in life they both came with large families already established. Their wedding party had the largest number of flower girls and ring bearers I’ve seen and I believe they were all their grandchildren! Super cute! The day ended up being perfect… even with the huge rain fall that held off until almost the end of the reception. They did choose the most popular day of the year to tie the knot purely because of the numbers 08.08.18. Both Jessa (my second photographer) and I really loved all the Salsa music and the heartfelt toasts that made the event even more special. Just a really down to Earth fun loving couple to work with!

Very excited to share some of my favorites from this event!

       

Vendors who made this day possible:

Venue & Caterer: Wedgewood at Brittany Hill

Officiant: Amazing Weddings & Ceremonies – Rev. Sam Lopez

Florist: Kimball Floral

Disc Jockey: DJ – Javi B (Javier Banuelos)

Bridal Dress: Bridal Collection

Bridesmaid Dresses:  Amanda’s Bridal

Tuxedo Rental: El Guapo Tuxedo

Baker: Mulberries Cake Shop

Photography: Crystaline Photography and Video

 

Lovely formal Summer country club wedding in Denver, Colorado.

Vendors Who Helped Make the Day Possible:

Venue: Cherry Hills Country Club

Wedding Planner: Cheers Wedding Planning

Photographer: Jo Julia Photography

Harpist: Mary Keener

Baker: Das Meyer

Band: Soul School

Video: Crystaline Photography and Video

 

Another beautiful wedding at easily one of Colorado’s most gorgeous mountain venues so close to the city! Michelle & Bryan tied the knot in August at a lovely ceremony filled love and laughter. This couple also utilized me for  their engagement photos last Winter so it was great getting to know them in through doing that portrait session with them as well. It made photographing them for their wedding even more easier! Even though they had a more formal affair Michelle & Bryan incorporated a lot of rustic purely Colorado elements into their event. They used photos from their engagement session along with beautiful floral arrangements for their centerpieces, and a rustic carved ring box for the ring bearer to carry along with an Avalanche Hockey team themed groom’s cake! If you’d like to see more photos from their ice skating engagement session click on this link: http://crystalinephoto.com/blog/2018/03/15/engagement-session-michelle-bryan/ 

It was a really great wedding made possible by a lot of really great vendors! The list is below all of my favorite images from this wedding. Enjoy!

 

            

 

 

 

   

 

 

 

Vendors who made this day possible:

Venue – Willow Ridge Manor

Caterer – Occasions Catering

Disc Jockey – Maestro Mobile Music Productions

Bakery: Das Meyer Bakery

Photography – Crystaline Photography and Video

Just finished up the video and photos from this late July wedding at Willow Ridge Manor. Jon, Eve and their friends and family were a joy to photograph and videotape. There were so many smiles and laughter at this event that we never had to say “cheese”! When I first met with this couple I immediately clicked with them because they were high school sweethearts who had been together for 10 years before they tied the knot just like my husband and I were when we said our “I Do’s” and now on the eve of our 12 year wedding anniversary I can look back fondly and remember where we started through reminiscing with a another young couple in love!  You two have been together longer than a lot of marriages survive already so I have faith that you have many, many more years to come together. Thank you again for having us capture your special day, I’m so excited for you to see your photos and your finished video!

      

 

Vendors who made this day possible:

Venue – Willow Ridge Manor

Caterer – Rocky Mountain Catering

Disc Jockey – Gotta Dance DJs

Bakery: Das Meyer Bakery

Florist – Hawk Flowers

Hair & Make-Up – Bel Viso

Photo & Video – Crystaline Photography and Video

Abbi & David’s amazing mountainside wedding at The View Restaurant at Historic Crags Lodge in Estes Park, Colorado. Beautiful ceremony for a wonderful couple.

In a wedding that is just a small step up from an elopement Joshua & Rosa decided to hold their event on a mountainside in Genesee Park one morning in July! With just their immediate family and one close friend (just 10 guests). The park offered a beautiful picturesque view without a lot of hassle. A few rented chairs, an officiant, flowers put together by the bride, a bluetooth speaker and their photographer (me) and they were all set. Again proving that love doesn’t have to wait for thousands of dollars to host an event. After their nuptial vows and some formal portraits the couple along with their family headed back down the mountain to have a celebratory luncheon at Maggiano’s in Denver. A beautiful day for a beautiful couple.

It’s a whole new ball game for photographers when it comes to weddings…. gone are the days when one “Uncle Bob” shows up with a nice camera wanting to take photos of the same wedding the photographer is getting paid to cover. Now every person attending a wedding has a pretty decent camera in their pockets in the form of a “smart phone” and for some reason this has given wedding guests the idea that the photos taken from such phones are wanted and/or needed making it more difficult for the actual paid professional to complete their assigned duties! A couple years ago it was a nuisance at best, however in 2018 if you have not asked your guests to refrain from taking photos at least during the ceremony it can become an all out war fighting guests for the best spot to photograph the happy couple.

Now you may be asking yourself “What’s the Big Deal? Why wouldn’t we want more images from our wedding that can be provided by our guests?” And that is a great question because I have seen some great photos taken by guests over the years, and maybe they capture something that the photographer has missed while he or she is photographing other things. It makes me happy knowing that others have captured other angles or events that I may have missed, but it literally breaks my heart when a guest ruins a perfect photo opportunity by jumping in front of me when I’m capturing a key moment of the day; mainly because I know that the photo that they just had to get will more than likely be blurry, low resolution or perhaps the couple will never see because it doesn’t get posted or even given to them! If I had been able to get the shot that I had prepared myself for than my clients would be happy. Shots like I knew we were just seconds away from like “the first kiss” that would’ve been a key element in their wedding album!

I’m including some photos from recent weddings that I’ve covered in this blog post with the faces of the couple and guests blurred out because my objective is not to shame these people, but rather to inform the public the benefits of an “Unplugged Wedding” or at the very least an “Unplugged Ceremony”.  I’ve been in the business for 18 years. Not to make myself look old, but I started out assisting my mother who was a pro in the days of film. It’s been sad watching the progression of seeing the smiling faces of wedding guests during the ceremony when the bride walks down the aisle to seeing faces hidden behind cameras and tablets. It really looks like the guests are more engaged with their phones than the actual wedding.

The most recent wedding I covered I literally had to push between at least four woman all vying for a position to photograph the couple. How was I ever to get the photos I was getting paid to take without having to be a little rude to guests. One time I was covering a Jewish wedding and I and my 2nd cameraman were both positioned for a crucial shot. When the rabbi got to the end of the ceremony and the couple were about to smash the glass an important Jewish tradition. Suddenly, a big guy sitting up front jumped up with his iPad blocking both of our views and so you can’t see the groom stomping on the glass at all! It’s not like I could yell, hey you up front move! Guests standing in the aisle of the photos also makes me sad because no matter what when you look at the photo your eyes go directly to the person standing in the aisle taking the photo and not to the actual subject of the photo.

I also really cringe when guests try to take photos over my shoulder during the formals. Usually, we are already under a time crunch so this extra interference doesn’t help. Flashes from others cameras can ruin my photos and the eyes of my subjects tend to wander to whomever is trying to take an additional  photo and so they won’t be focused on my camera. And it can make guests angry if I have to tell them to put down their cameras. It’s better just to leave these photos up to the professionals. I’m not even interested in making money off print sales as most of my clients are getting all of their high resolution digital files anyways. I just want their photos to be the best that they can be, so the respectful thing is to let the photographer do their job.

So for the distinguished couple comes the new trend that is actually kind of sad that it has to be done… “The Unplugged Wedding”. Other than having your guests surrender their phones at the door to the venue like they do at some comedy shows now to protect the artists’ routines, some wise person came up with the idea of the “Unplugged Wedding”. The idea is plain enough in that it’s a simple request from the couple to their guests to turn off all of their electronic devices (even if it’s just for the actual ceremony only) and to be present in the moment for their special day. To facilitate this couples will not only write this in their wedding program, but also create signs to have displayed at their event and/or ask their wedding officiant to make an announcement during the opening remarks before the processional begins. I’ve only actually been to a couple weddings so far that put this idea into practice and I can tell you it was completely worth it! The photos and video during the ceremony that we took at these events were all amazing and the guests look like people participating in something rather than screen zombies!

I know selfies are a thing now and so are wedding hashtags, but if I were getting married today instead of 12 years ago when I did get married I would be going for a fully unplugged wedding with the reception included. Smart phones were around when I got married, but they weren’t as prevalent as they are today. My mother has always been the photographer in our family, but I ordered her not to bring her camera to my wedding because I wanted her to be present, to enjoy herself and to not be concerned about whether or not she was getting enough photos. And for one of the few times in my life I saw her at an important event in our family’s lives without a camera in hand and she was loving it! I also ended up with some beautiful photos with her in them which are few and far between because she was always the person taking them. I researched my photographer thoroughly, I had seen his work and I spent more money on that then almost everything else (besides food) because photos were that important to me. And I didn’t worry about a thing. He covered every moment of our big day, nothing was missed. I saw maybe two people pull out other cameras that day. I received one disk of photos from one of those people and almost every image was either blurry, over exposed and just not up to my standards. The other person posted a few on Facebook and I never saw the rest. I’m so grateful for the photographer that I hired and happy that I got married in another time!

 

I loved working with Angelina & Darrin to create their dream wedding in the mountains! This was another case of less is more! This couple planned a destination wedding here in Colorado from their home state of Illinois. Angie and I spent quite a bit a time on the phone discussing the special places that she wanted to go to do some of their photos, colors, and more. I even ended up fielding a call for where they should look to rent chairs! I just enjoy helping couples plan their big day and having seen almost every kind of wedding imaginable over the years, I can almost always point them in the right direction for their needs. This couple had camped in Golden Gate Canyon State Park many times prior to their wedding so having it here just seemed like the best idea! It was a simple affair with I think with no more than 20 guests. They utilized the Harmsen Guest House in the park where their parents were staying as the getting ready area and held their beautiful ceremony at Panorama Point. On most days this location yields a beautiful 180 degree view of mountain peaks, but unfortunately, the mountains were fogged in during their ceremony.  Luckily, the clouds parted right after the vows and we were able to get quite a few photos with them in the background.  After the family photos we did a couple mini hikes to a couple more spots with amazing views for photos and then afterwards headed to Black Hawk which is just a short drive from the park. The Saratoga Casino houses The Mill Chophouse on their top floor where the small dinner was held. The food was amazing and abundant! I think each person present went home with a  “to-go” bag!  It was a beautiful day and I’m glad I got to spend it with them!

 

   

Ceremony Venue: Harmsen Guest House & Panorama Point in Golden Gate Canyon State Park

Reception Venue: The Mill City Chophouse at Saratoga Casino

Chair Rental – Area Rent Alls

Officiant: Edwin Ward