My Favorite Moments from 2018
I’ve never been the sappy type, which is kinda weird if you think about it. My favorite Christmas movie is Die Hard, and I’ve never committed to any sort of a new years resolution, like ever. But despite all that I love photographing emotional moments. I think it has to do with how little you get to see and experience these kinds of moments every day, and the fact you can’t manufacture them just makes them all the more special.
So as I was sitting on the couch this morning on the first day of 2019, I started thinking back to what my most favorite moments where, and how unique they made my 2018. Here’s a look into the sample of just a few of those for you to enjoy, and here’s to so many more to come in the new year.
When Alisha had a first dance with her new son
I was a guest at this wedding in Rock Springs Wyoming, and one of my favorite parts of it was when the bride had a formal ‘first dance’ with her new husband’s son. They danced to “Shut Up and Dance with Me,” and whenever I hear that song now I think of this moment. Also this kid was a dancing fiend and it was super fun to watch them go.
When I photographed Kelsey in her garden
I reached out to Kelsey after seeing her beautiful homegrown bouquets on instagram because I just knew I needed pictures of her in her natural element. And I wasn’t disappointed - her garden was in full bloom by early August, and I had a blast just letting Kelsey get her gardening on. She even gave me the beautiful bouquet you see pictured above, which she made “improv style” during our shoot.
When Jenna and Tanner made an exit
What’s the ultimate thing to mix into a late night reception with your slightly inebriated guests? Sparklers! And what’s the best thing to do with them? Line everybody up and run right through them! Seriously though, knowing that this sparkler exit was coming initially made me nervous since it was my first, but after seeing what cool light they were casting on the group I immediately got over it. People were having fun, Jenna and Tanner ran through there as fast as they could (despite me trying to get them to slow down :-P), and I got some pretty fun shots of the night. Challenging shot accomplished.
When I second shot with so many photographers
I started putting myself out there with other photographers this year to help out with their weddings, and one of those weddings was up in Grand Isle this summer. We were graced with some beautiful weather and the chance of taking sunset pictures right on Lake Champlain. Watching the lead photographer do her thing as well as getting some beautiful shots of my own reaffirmed my passion for doing this work, and got me jazzed to dive in headfirst into wedding photography.
When Sara’s son crashed our headshot session
Sara hired me to do some simple headshot photos at her home in Essex, which was going great, but out of the blue her oldest son just had to join in. I kept shooting through the ambush and ending up getting some pretty adorable shots of them together.
When Helena and Matt got a new puppy
His name is Hubble, and he’s a good boy. His favorite activities include romping around the backyard chasing Matt and flopping over on his back when being held like a baby, as seen above. Helena and Matt also just bought their new house together, so it was a cool session full of featuring all the new and exciting parts of their new life together.
When Patrick saw Morgan for the first time
I traveled deep into Maine to shoot this wedding, and one of the things Morgan and Patrick really wanted was a first look before the day swept them away. I set them up a so that Patrick was looking at the spot where they would soon exchange vows, and I had Morgan come up behind him and tap him on the shoulder. The face as he turned around to see her is what I captured here - it’s just this wonderful mix of amusement and a tich of wonder as he first sees her that really shows how special she is to him.
When the Hudsons and I went on a walk through the woods
Fun fact - I used to work with Jeremy back in the day, and when he heard that I was starting to do photography full time he was totally jazzed to hire me to shoot some family photos. We had a totally chill afternoon hanging out in the woods near their house and getting some of the most vibrant, fun images together. It was hard to pick just one out of them all (You’ve probably seen me rant and rave about this shot I got during our session).
When my niece overcame her fears
We went on my niece’s first trip to Storyland this summer, which was a new experience for everyone being at an amusement park with a 9 month old. One of the first rides we took her on was the carousel, which at first she was not about. But as the ride got moving she started warming up to it, and by the end she was having a blast. Being an aunt has been pretty great, but this moment was a favorite of mine - to really see her blossom and learn about how cool the world around her is is just so special to me.
When I learned to cheer kids on
This was at another wedding I was helping out at, the bride and groom had this adorable son who was in the wedding party. As we were posing for group photos and the lead photographer was directing the everyone, I noticed this little guy was looking pretty tired and not excited to still be taking pictures. I knelt down and asked him what he was excited to do next once the pictures were all done, and he immediately lit up and exclaimed “mac and cheese!” Apparently he was getting mac and cheese for dinner, and as I am also a lover of the stuff I showed just how excited I was for him. After that he was a lot more interested in taking pictures, and he even started doing some poses for me. The one taken here was a sweet moment I captured of him snuggling up to his mom, which is definitely not a shot you could normally ask a kid to do. I still believe that the unexpected makes for the most compelling shots, and this is the one I think of most.
When the fog lifted
One of the cooler weddings I got to do this summer was at Strattion Mountain with Lindsay Raymondjack, where they had the ceremony at the top of the mountain. The only bummer was the whole time we were up there, we were completely surrounded by fog. After the ceremony ended and the guests had made their way back down the mountain for the reception, we stuck around to do some portraits with the newlyweds. We knew they had been a little bummed that they didn’t get a view of the valley, but as we were about to wrap up we got the tiniest break in the fog in the area behind us, so we jumped at the chance to get more pictures. I think the shots we got of them in the fog are super surreal and unique, but you can see how much they lit up when they got some sunshine on their wedding day.
When Megan and John hired me
My first wedding for 2019 was booked with John and Megan, when we met up for beers and food at the bar where they first met. I knew these guys were my people, and we meshed so well that I knew photographing them was gonna be so much fun. It also put the wind in my sails when the booking was all official, since it meant that there are people in the world who are excited to work with me. Also their engagement shoot from this past October was awesome - can you tell how much I love me some Lake Champlain?
When we went for the first look
Another mountain wedding! This one was at Killington Resort which I shot with Jess Gabeler, and one of our first tasks for the day was to scope out and coordinate the first look. I was on bride detail with Jackie, and we decided on the mountain top as our destination. I rode up the gondola with her and her parents, and despite how chill Jackie appeared I could feel her excitement in that tiny little space. They later threw what was the most epic dance party I’ve ever been to at their reception., and I still rave about to total strangers to this day
When I learned to bribe kids with Cheez-its
Armando and Sam were psyched when I met up with them to shoot some family pictures, and this was the first session where I came prepared - with snacks! Kori and Paxton were pretty young so I knew I had to bring something to get their attention, so I tried out a theory where if I was the person with the snacks, they would do (a little) of my bidding. Low and behold, it worked! They were crazy fans of the Cheez-its, so we would trade a picture for a cracker. I snapped this photo right after one of our first transactions.
When Gabby and Nate shot their Christmas card
Gabby’s vision involved a lot of bad sweaters and 80’s light shows (as seen here in it’s full glory), but after we had our fun with that I got them to go outside with me to do something a little more simple. I love Gabby’s sass in this shot, as well as Nate’s expression - he tolerates all of the silliness like a trooper, but deep down you know he loves it.
When Felix wore his mom’s sweater
When Caitlin was pregnant with Felix, she took photos of her growing belly while wearing this sweater. When I met up with them to take some photos of them all together, she mentioned that she’d love to get ashot of him wearing that same sweater every year as he grew up. I felt so honored to be the first to start this yearly tradition, and despite the fact Felix wasn’t so keen on it, I think he’ll grow (get it?) to love it.
When we went for a hike
My last official session of 2018 was with friends Heather and Jay with their dogs, and we hiked up a small mountain out in the middle of nowhere that looked over all of the snowy mountains. I’ve said before that I don’t get out enough once it gets cold out, and having photography as my excuse to do it just made it that more fun. Plus whenever there’s dogs to photograph you’ll know I’ll be there.
When Allison told her mom she was having a baby
This was one of the first times I was crying behind the lens. Allison had hired me to shoot some “mothers days portraits” as a gift to her mom, and we met up at the Sandbar early in May to make it happen. Allison told her her plan (and that she was expecting!) as we walked over to the spot, so I at least had some warning of what would happen. What ended up happening was so much more beautiful then I could have ever expected, and this image that came from it is one of my most treasured pictures I’ve ever taken.
And here’s a bonus moment: The kid I shot above turned out to have some gnarly break dancing moves, and I couldn’t get enough of just watching him do his thing. This is just one of so many reasons why I do what I do - you just never know what a group of people will do when they all come together, but I wanna be there to capture it.