I’ve waited to blog this wedding for a very, very long time so I’m super excited for today when I get to share with you, drumroll, please… Carol and John’s wedding! Hanging out with these two gives me the same feeling as when my coffee kicks in. Pure, unadulterated joy.
We started our day with a first look on the patio of the Vue in the Brewery District of downtown Columbus. John was so excited to see Carole. As he was waiting for her, he was staring at one of the potted plants in front of him nervous and anxious to give his bride a hug! When he finally got to see her, he explained to her how he’ll never forget that plant and how much it means to him now. Lol!
We hopped on a bus and went to Schiller Park for some enchanting and magical photos. I’ve honestly never laughed so much on a shoot before. You’ll see why. I adore people who don’t take themselves too seriously- especially on their wedding day!
From there we utilized some rustic Columbus spots for more photos before we headed back. The green bridesmaid dresses were so striking. I truly wish more weddings utilized this color!
Their ceremony inside the Vue was filled with laughter and tears of joy. The setting was striking with its natural light and soaring ceilings. Immediately after the ceremony, Carole and John spent a few minutes together on the back patio with just each other. I was so glad to see them taking the time to do that because the party that followed was a throw-down whirlwind!!! Awesome speeches, a Dairy Queen ice cream cart, and some incredible dance moves were just a little of what made this party so memorable. I couldn’t be more happy for two people and thank the universe all the time for letting us cross paths!
I’m finally into my fall weddings! I am so excited to share Susan and Michael’s wedding today! This beautiful outdoor ceremony took place at Brookshire in the fall. The grounds at Brookshire did not disappoint! It was a fall extravaganza everywhere you looked.
I couldn’t get enough of how Susan’s Wendy’s Bridal dress looked on the figure bust in the bridal suite. It was such a focal point and everyone that walked in the room immediately went and stared at it. I just loved photographing the intricate beading and details of its form.
We started the day with a first look on Brookshire’s side patio. The space was lined with illuminated bistro lights which created such a romantic backdrop for these two. From there we just walked the grounds, took pictures, and soaked up every moment before the day really got started. Large pumpkins, gourds, and wheat stalks lined their little garden area. The tree next to the garden had the most delicate berries growing on them, which went perfectly with Susan’s bouquet that also had berries. Speaking of her bouquet, it was quite literally the best smelling bouquet I’ve ever smelled. I asked the florist what was creating that intoxicating smell and he explained it was Freesia. Brides- USE FREESIA. You won’t regret it. It smells amazing.
For their ceremony, the aisle was lined with flowers in mason jars hanging from the chairs. The front arbor was decorated with sprays of maroon and white flowers. As Susan started to walk down the path towards Michael, the little ring bearer escaped and his father had to reel him in. I live for little impromptu memorable moments like that. After they said their “I do’s”, the evening was very relaxed and intimate. Thank you so much to Michael and Susan for letting me share in this incredible day. I’m so honored to share these today and hope you love them as much as I did taking them! XO Jess
One of the things I love most about being around Terri and Liza is they act like a new couple even though they’ve been together for years. Both of their faces just light up when they see each other. To have such a palpable love I think is pretty rare. It also made photographing them extremely easy.
We shot their engagement session at the Community Garden at Franklin Park Conservatory on the most beautiful September evening when the golden sun was low in the sky. The warm glow of the universe only made Terri and Liza that much more beautiful together. A couple of weeks later, these two tied the knot in an intimate German Village ceremony which I will blog about in the weeks to come. Until then, I hope you enjoy these as much as I did taking them! XO Jess
I think the single biggest gift being a wedding photographer has given me has been reconnecting with people from my past on such a loving an important day as their wedding. I have photographed the weddings and special moments for people I’ve gone to high school with, people that I’ve gone to college with, people I’ve gone to graduate school with and people that I’ve met in while living in other cities. 17 years ago I was lucky enough to find myself working at ACCAD as a summer counselor for a women in technology program. Little did I know that program would change my life probably more than it changed any of the other girls attending the week-long camp. The other counselors became lifelong mentors to me and women that I continue to look up to and aspire to be. One of those women is Samantha. When she contacted me about her wedding day, to say I was honored would be an understatement. We FaceTimed together where I got to both meet her fiancé Lisa and start the ball rolling on planning their romantic Via Vecchia wedding.
Fast forward to their wedding day. It’s not often I get choked up on a wedding day, but when Samantha walked into the room with a blue sequined dress, I kinda lost it a little. She was so radiant. A little later, I was able to meet Lisa in-person for the first time in her suite down the hallway at the downtown Westin. It had felt like I had known her for years. Her brother and best friend were hanging out in the room with her and they had such great senses of humor, I immediately felt a connection with them all.
Lisa and Sam wanted so badly to get married in the alley at Via Vecchia, but the universe had other plans for them. It not only rained, but it down-poured to the point it was testing the capacity of the gutters. The entire ceremony setup was moved indoors at the last minute thanks to Via Vecchia owner, Michael, and Lisa and Sam’s friends and family. Let me tell you- it looked so amazing. I couldn’t get enough of the hot-pink uplighting. It ended up being the ceremony with the biggest visual cool-factor of the year. I know it wasn’t what they had envisioned, but it was just perfect.
My favorite parts of the reception were the speeches, as always, the shoe game where we got to see a little insight on Sam and Lisa’s relationship, and the sibling dance-off which was judged by Sam and Lisa’s parents. I’m not sure I’ve laughed that hard in years. Later that night, the rain stopped and so we snuck out and did a few evening shots under the Via Vecchia bistro alley lights. I can’t thank Samantha and Lisa enough for having me photograph their wedding. I hope you all love these as much as I loved taking them! XO Jess
When I think back to this wedding, I still think it was a wonderful dream. Everything from start to finish was so beautiful, laid-back, and genuine. Kaila and Brittany started their day getting their hair and make-up done in the same room. They then separated into two different rooms to put on their dresses for their first look. We did their first look in the heart of German Village on hot but beautiful June day. Both of their dresses were a pale blush color and very similar as far as the cut. The details, however, were very different and so striking on each of them. Their two dresses together were so breathtaking and all my second shooter and I could say was, “two dresses are so much better than one!” After a few shots on the streets of German Village, we headed over to Schiller Park. The beautiful park mixed with these two gorgeous ladies made for some seriously romantic photos.
Now it was time to go get married! The outdoor ceremony took place in Frank Fetch Park in the heart of German Village. The park had a small fountain that provided a warm ambient background noise. Each bride was escorted in by their immediate family up to a central arbor. They had their neighbor perform the ceremony and she read one of my favorite readings, “on marriage” by Kahlil Gibran. Vows were shared, tears were shed, and before you knew it, Kaila and Brittany were wife and wife!
From Frank Fetch Park we headed over to Dock 580 where we were able to get some of my favorite portraits from the day! After that, the real fun began and the night was filled with some seriously funny speeches, lots of laughs and two radiant souls surrounded by family and friends. Thank you, Kaila and Brittany, for having me as your wedding photographer. This was truly one of the highlights of my year! XO Jess
So excited and honored to be featured on Deco Weddings today! I adored Becca and Rich’s downtown Columbus elopement, their personal style, and all the love that surrounded them throughout their insanely fun day. View their feature here:
When I arrived at Morgan’s room on her wedding day everything was abuzz. There was a kinetic energy in the air that was just so happy! Morgan herself was nothing but smiles. The dress was hanging on the windowsill and from everywhere in the room, it served as a beautiful focal point. When it was time to put on her dress, Morgan and her mother stood alone in front of the window as she buttoned up the back of the lacy silhouette. One of my favorite things to photograph is a mother’s hands as they fasten their daughter into their dress. It’s a quiet moment filled with a stillness and a deep love. Right after her dress was on, Morgan was embraced with hugs from family and friends. It was now time to go outside and see Brian.
The couple saw each other for the first time on the grounds of the Nationwide Hotel and Conference Center. Morgan tapped Brian on his shoulder and as he turned around and saw her, his face was pure joy. He embraced her in a deep hug, spun her around and then it was time to go get married!
The ceremony took place at St. Brigid of Kildare. I think this is one of my favorite churches because it is so photogenic. So much so, we even utilized the grounds after the wedding for some of their portraits. From the church, we all piled onto the party bus and were whisked away to Highbanks Metro Park for some beautiful portraits in a more natural setting. We stumbled upon this old path that was grown over, yet perfect for dreamy wedding photos. After that, we got back on the bus and one of my favorite moments of the day happened. Brian started lip-syncing to Morgan on the bus. It was so adorable and you could just feel the love between them. After some photos around the NHCC grounds, it was time for their reception in the newly renovated Edgewater Room. Madison House Designs provided the stunning florals that accented every table. Speeches, happy-teared dances and an evening full of laughter and happiness followed. I feel so lucky to have been there to see and capture it all. Thank you, Morgan and Brian, for trusting me with your photographs! XO Jess
On the day of Griffin and Dan’s wedding, I met up with Griffin at her parent’s house. Griffin had told me that she wanted some of her portraits taken in her mother’s bathroom and of course, I said yes! But what I didn’t realize at the time, even though she explained it to me, was that her mother (being an artist) had transformed the entire bathroom space into the most stunning work of art. Everywhere the eye turned were the most beautiful mosaics made from broken tiles, beads and egg shells. I feel like you could spend hours in that room and only see a very small part of it. I loved the symbolism of taking Griffin’s portraits in this room. Her mother had started it as a tribute to her own mother, so in that bathroom was the warmth of multiple generations of women and an outpouring of creative love that only a mother can have, and only an artist can convey.
It was now time for the wedding so we headed a few streets over to Griffin and Dan’s place where they were to get married in their backyard. Everything was immaculate and perfectly groomed for the ceremony. Dan had tears of joy as he read a note from Griffin right before the ceremony. Griffin and her sister shared the sweetest moment in the garage right before the entrance music started. The flower girls had the best senses of humor. They walked down the aisle, stopped right in front of Dan and dumped out all of the petals in their baskets at his feet. The ceremony itself was probably no longer than 10 minutes, and before you knew it they were husband and wife and drove off in a white convertible!
I got to hitch a ride in their sweet ride and we rode around downtown Columbus for some portraits. When we made our way back to their backyard party, the food truck had arrived and was serving up hot bagel sandwiches. I always forget how ridiculously good a bagel sandwich is and the Short North Bagel Deli did NOT disappoint! My favorite part of their reception was Griffin’s dance with her Dad. In the middle, her Mom and sister joined them. A couple minutes later, all four of them turned to Dan, arms wide open, and welcomed him into their family hug-dance. His face as they did this was priceless. As the sun set, you could hear relaxed laughter, see amazing dance moves and feel the love in the air. I am beyond honored to have been with Griffin and Dan on this day. It was one of the highlights of my professional career! XO Jess
Olivia and Austin‘s wedding was one for the ages. It took place at the Irongate Equestrian Center in early May. The weather was a bit precarious, as it called for showers all day. It only rained when they were inside getting ready and they were able to have their wedding ceremony outdoors under a canopy of massive trees and a backdrop of horses grazing in the pasture. As I pulled up to the Irongate, some horses were poking their noses out of their stalls. I pulled my car over, got out and went over and talked to one of them and shot a few horse portraits. There’s something so enchanting about the eyes of horses. They’re so calm and carry with them so much emotion. It’s as if they know so much more than we do. Olivia is a long time horse and animal lover, as she owns a horse named Figaro ( who you might remember from their engagement pictures here) and just got her Ph.D. in veterinary science. Austin is a lover of everything outdoors and together they make the perfect couple who definitely hears the call of the wild. As Olivia and the girls were getting ready, Austin was outside helping set up the ceremony location. On the arbor they were decorating, there was a mounted deer head with a horseshoe attached to its center forehead. I asked Austin if that was one of his trophies from hunting, and he smiled really big and said, ” No, Olivia bagged that!” He went on to explain that the horseshoe that was affixed to the skull was found in his grandfather’s barn and used to ride on a working horse.
There was a nice breeze during their ceremony that brought Olivia’s veil to life. Olivia’s maid of honor also sang a song during the ceremony and she sounded like a professional singer! The whole experience was so hurtful and genuine. After the ceremony, we were able to take some fun photos with the bridal party and then some with just Olivia and Austin. I don’t think I could ever ask for a prettier location to shoot portraits.
Now it was time for the party to begin! And oh my god did this party not disappoint. I think this might win the best dancing of the year so far! My favorite moment was when the reception was over, all the people went outside for their sparkler send off, and Olivia and Austin had one last dance together in an empty room. It was one of the most romantic things I have ever seen and I highly suggest it to couples who want an extra special moment just by themselves at the end of their night.
I am over the moon to announce that John and Jennifer’s July wedding at Lightning Tree Barn is published this month on Oh, The Heart Wedding Blog which features weddings from Central Ohio vendors. I can’t even tell you how beautiful and expertly planned this wedding was. These two are now forever in my heart and I just love watching their lives evolve through social media (they live across the country). Thank you again Jenn and John for trusting me with your wedding images. That day was spectacular and I’m so excited for you all to see this today! XO Jess