Carly and Alexxa met me out on a late September afternoon with their beautiful baby Coby. For me, it was an hour that went by too quickly. It had been a few years since I had seen Carly.
Quite honestly, I’ve been avoiding writing this blog for the same reason I delayed writing about my friend Nicole’s wedding. I don’t want to sound like a creeper. But a superficially written blog won’t due for these two. So at the risk of sounding like a super fangirl, here it goes.
I met Carly working at a local production house here in Columbus over 5 years ago? I don’t know- time is more of a theoretical thing for me anymore. She was fresh out of college and super young, however, I’m at the age where I feel like most people are super young. What struck me about her right off the bat is how mature and true to herself she was. Those are two qualities it took me years and becoming a parent to accomplish. On her first day of work, Alexxa had sent her a huge bouquet of flowers. I remember everyone was pretty impressed by that. She had told me the story of how they met online very randomly and ever since had been inseparable. When I met Alexxa for the first time, I was struck by how similar these two are. They have a similar frame, same length and color of hair… same soft way of giggling at each other. They “look” like a couple. One time my husband and I did a face-swap and you couldn’t tell the difference (freaky to say the least). There’s a photo of my parents when they were in their 20s. They looked alike as well. You get it- sometimes you look like your spouse.
Fast forward maybe a year after meeting these two. Carly and Alexxa adopted their beautiful fur-baby Coby. We always bonded over our love of our dogs. My boy Rugby was my fur baby until I had human babies. Now sometimes I struggle to remember his name, LOL. I can say with 100% certainty that there has never been a more beloved puppers than Coby. I love when their Insata stories pop up- I always get to see some ridiculously cute photos or videos of Coby. * Rugby earmuffs for what I’m about to say* Coby might be the cutest dog I’ve ever seen.
Throughout the rest of my time working alongside Carly, I found her to be an incredibly talented graphic designer, patient with all kinds of personalities, laid back and super funny. It’s hard not to respect and admire her. So when she and Alexxa asked if I’d be their wedding photographer, I was beyond-words excited. I am so happy for these two as they tie the knot later this year. Until then, check out their engagement shoot. Their love for each other is palpable and extremely easy to photograph!
Ok I feel like a part of myself has been missing and this is because I haven’t written a blog in a couple of months. I set the craziest goal for myself this year to do 100 blogs. I am at 50-something, so obviously I didn’t make that goal. But it did train me to write and write regularly. So much so I really missed it when I stopped. I missed sharing all these amazing stories with you. I missed going in-depth visually and sharing all these fun moments we’ve had together. So even though I’m still on the crazy train of editing, I’m making time for a quick blog so I can get my fix.
This is Mike and Susan. When I met with them they mentioned they had this special cat that started hanging around them and basically adopted them. I told them they should bring her to their engagement shoot, and sure enough when I saw them pull up in their truck, there was their cat on their dashboard. I was excited like a little kid. I had never done an engagement shoot with a kitty! This was a very special cat, though. When we did photos of just Mike and Susan, Mike put the cat down to the side and it just waited for them to finish getting their photos taken. It was incredible. They theorized that the cat knows she has it good and wouldn’t dare leave them for life in the streets again. My brother always claimed that cats were super intellectually smart, and this might have proved it to me.
Mike and Susan’s evening shoot led us to the Scioto Mile bridge downtown where a fire red sun greeted us with the most spectacular rich lighting. From there the sun was pretty much gone but we stopped at the Columbus sign behind 16-bit arcade downtown. A couple of weeks after we took these photos, these two tied the knot in a stunning fall wedding which I can’t wait to share in the coming weeks! XO Jess
Hey guys! Jess here, straight off my triple-header weekend. Between Friday and Sunday, I took well over 10,000 photos. I’d say I have some homework cut out for myself!
Today I want to share Jackie and Terry’s engagement shoot! The moment Jackie stepped out of the car she took my breath away in her stunning flowy purple dress and fantastic red lipstick! I love women who aren’t afraid of a little color, especially on photo day!
Terry has lived all over the country and moved a lot in his life. I asked him how he liked Columbus, and his answer was just perfect. He said something to the effect of, “Of course I love it- I met the love of my life here.” AWE!!!
We did most of the shoot in German Village, a very eclectic part of town. During our shoot, we met a guy who couldn’t find where he parked his car the night before (no comment). We also met an older lady who made Terry try and fix her flower box because he was tall enough to reach it. People in Columbus are so like that- there just aren’t any strangers, LOL. Needless to say, we were making memories all over the place but one this is for sure: The weather was amazing and these two worked that camera to no end! I just love their bright and colorful collection. I can’t wait for their beach themed wedding!
When I walked in and saw Susan’s dress hanging up, I knew right there and then this wedding was going to be show-stopping. It was a gown fit for royalty and Susan looked flawless in it! After some dapper portraits of Patrick in the Grand Event Center lobby, Susan and Patrick met in the courtyard for their first look. The setting was just perfect- an intimate and private corner adorned with bistro lights that made for stunning photos. From The Grand Event Center, we traveled to the Scioto Mile downtown. I love the Main Street Bridge. It has a killer view of the Columbus skyline, but it seems like every time I’m there I can photograph it differently which is refreshing as a photographer. It has a very cosmopolitan feel to it so I totally get why its a favorite for lots of bridal parties. Before heading back to the venue for family photos, we stopped outside COSI for some classically themed portraits with a twist. The stairway there allowed for some pretty cool and unexpected angles.
It was then time to get married! We entered the side doorway of the Boulevard Presbyterian Church as the spring blossoms were dancing in the trees on this late April evening. Boulevard Presbyterian has a warm and intimate feel inside the sanctuary. The church itself is almost 100 years old (started in 1925), so when you’re inside, you can tell it has had a well-established history. One of my favorite parts of a wedding day is when the door opens, revealing the bride right before she walks down the aisle. There’s a moment within that moment that feels simply electric. Whether the couple has done a first look or not, this electricity always exists. I think there’s a realization that a defining life moment is about to happen and feelings of anticipation, excitement and reflection can be felt all at once. It was the perfect backdrop for Susan and Patrick to start their marriage.
After the ceremony, everyone headed back to the Grand Event Center for an evening full of food, dancing, and fun. I was lucky enough to do some portraits of just the two of them in the ballroom before guests came in from cocktail hour. The ceiling has these fantastic modern lights that photograph so, so well! The event center also has a fire pit in their courtyard so many guests relaxed outside on this cool spring evening. I’m so excited to show these photos today and I hope you love them as much as I did taking them! Xo jess
Being a photographer has brought so many blessings to my life, but meeting this family has to be among the top 10. I have been lucky enough to photograph two of their Weddings, a ton of family sessions, become super close friends with Christina (who did my makeup for my wedding and countless other shoots), and now today I’m excited to share with you their extended family photo session from last month! We all met up downtown at the Scioto Mile riverfront in downtown Columbus, where we are quite literally spent an hour and a half just laughing our butts off. I guess that’s the wrong use of the word “literally”, but you get it.
Everyone in this group is so easy going, funny, and ready for anything. They speak to you so naturally and make you feel like you’re the most important person in the world at that moment. They never passively hug, but grab you and wrap you up and hold you in an embrace that’s so genuine and true. In other words, I wish they would adopt me. Especially because I hear they make some killer Lebanese food for family gatherings. Why does my brain always land on food? Before I start writing Haikus about Baklava, let me finish telling you about this shoot.
From the Scioto Mile, we crossed the Main Street Bridge and took some more photos in front of COSI. It was Earth day, so a festival was going on. It seems like there’s always a festival going on in Columbus these days! There’s a grand staircase there that we used as an elegant backdrop for some tickles, hugs, and embarrassing mom moments (you know, when mom wants to grab and kiss you on camera, ewww!). As I was leaving this shoot, their mom hugged me, looked me in the eyes and said: “God bless your hands”. I remember doing what I do whenever someone gives me a compliment, and I thought oh, she’s crazy. But that comment has stayed with me. It was so loving, unexpected and poetic. Thank you all for being in my life, trusting me with your photographs and for letting me hang out with you from time to time! So without further ado, here are the photos from this electrifying shoot! XO Jess
I wanted to sneak this blog in around the holidays because it is pure glistening eye candy!! This shoot was from early January 2017 but by the time I caught up with my blogging, it was early spring and posting a winter shoot just didn’t make sense. I’ve quietly waited all year to unveil this enchanting day to evening shoot. To say I’m excited to post these today is an understatement.
Tanya and Chris were actually married but never had a large ceremony or photo session because Chris was deployed shortly after they tied the knot. Chris surprised Tanya with the photo shoot as a Christmas gift and we met up downtown at the Scioto Mile on one of the snowiest days of last year. I remember driving there squinting through the snowy windshield, thinking wow this is going to be interesting. But it was actually perfect, romantic and magical!! Except for at the very end of the shoot when we were walking back to the car and I totally fell in front of them on a patch of ice. Super embarrassing! I had a nice bruise as a souvenir from the night- but even more importantly, fantastic memories and a shoot that I would do again in a heartbeat.
Winter is such a pretty time for photography so if you’re up for braving the elements, definitely give me a call!! And so without further ramblings, here is Tanya and Chris’ magical winter session! Xo jess
Megan and Keith’s wedding was on a most exceptional late September day. The people, the locations, the weather, and the classic beauty were all so much fun to be around and capture.
I met up with Megan at the Downtown Columbus Hotel. When I walked in, her room was exploding with lots of friends and excitement. I had never met her in person and was immediately struck by the fact she looked so much like one of my best friends! It was an automatic familiar feeling which I found both comforting and inspiring. Then when I found out she loved Lady Gaga and was wearing Jimmy Choo shoes, I was seriously impressed! Megan was helped into her stunning Rosa Clara dress by her mom and closest friends. It fit her like an absolute dream. Before we ventured off to the church, we utilized some of the outdoor marquee lights at the Renaissance for some stunning bridal photos.
The ceremony took place at the beautiful St. Leo in German Villiage. The isle was lined with strands of tulle and white flowers. The lighting was soft and romantic. A violinist was accompanied by a woman singing with a beautiful voice. It all felt intimate, religious and genuine. Afterwards, the couple exited the church to a flurry of bubbles showered on them by their friends and family.
For portraits, we stopped by the OSU campus’ Thompson Library. It’s a beautiful classical backdrop for the sophisticated bridal party. Speaking of bridal party, I think my favorite thing about both side’s of this bridal party is it was composed of men and women on both sides. It was such a refreshing thing to see and I wish more people didn’t feel obligated to only have men or only have women standing by them. We made one last stop at the Scioto Mile for a couple more photos before we made our way back to the Renaissance for the reception.
The event ballroom was uplit with pink and had tall overflowing floral centerpieces. The rest of the night was spent celebrating and dancing! And boy did they dance! I’m so excited to share this wedding today and I hope you love these as much as I did taking them:) XO Jess
Chelsey wanted the fall colors in her and Michael’s engagement photos, which was somewhat of a hit-or-miss game this year! Luckily, the day we had their shoot the weather was absolutely perfect and the first location we shot at, the Grange Insurance Audubon Center, was alive with every fall color imaginable! Chelsey wore a purple vest that was absolutely perfect for fall photos. Seeing these photos this week, when the weather is turning dark and drap is a serious mood-lifter. They even brought their little doggie that has that absolute best little ears and cutest little kissable face!! He would even enjoy laying in Michaels’ arms like a baby.
From the Audubon center, we went to the Scioto Mile for some city backdrops. Chelsey wore a dress that Michael gave her for their first Christmas together. She said the gift came with theater tickets as well- a very “pretty woman” moment! The hot pink color looked so vibrant against the city- I just love it when people wear bold colors! I’m so excited for their wedding next year. These two are so fun to be around and super easy to photograph!! Cheers to you both! Xo jess
This is my last blog post for a 2016 session – can’t wait to show you all the springtime goodness on the blog in the upcoming weeks. But let’s flashback now to the beautiful fall! Donna and Tim used to live down by the Scioto Mile, so we decided it would be the perfect place to do photos. The foliage around the area is perfection in the late fall. These two were so relaxed and naturally just laughed with each-other in front of the camera. Thank you so much to Donna and Tim for having me with you on this perfect day! XO Jess
Obviously a lot of photography is based on lighting conditions, but consider yourself lucky if you have a grey overcast day on the day of your shoot the way Brianna and Jake did. The pillowy (is that a word?) clouds created the softest, most even light- it was a pastel wonderland in my camera. These two were so cute together and I can’t wait for their quickly approaching May wedding this year. Brianna will be such a stunning bride, don’t you think?
We did their engagement shoot around the Scioto Mile, which inadvertently became one of my shooting hot-spots over the last year. It’s one of those places that looks good in any season. In the next couple of weeks, I’ll post a night blizzard session I did there in January.
Brianna and Jake had a really cute way of interacting with each-other and making each-other laugh. They would rag on the other one, much in the same way my husband and I interact. I just posted about Kara and Steve last week- and how Steve was in The Ohio State University Marching Band. Fun fact, Jake was too! That makes a TBDBITL double header (google it if you don’t know it) for my blog! I’m so honored and excited to be a part of their upcoming wedding. Until then, enjoy these photos of these two love birds! XO Jess