28 guests, including us. I think we have said it before but just to say it one more time, the smaller the wedding, the more loved each guest feels. Ok, we could totally be wrong about this, but it was so obvious and beautiful how Pam and Brian showed their appreciation and love on their wedding day. Nothing was overstated, nothing was chaotic, it just worked, and for us it felt really really special to be a part of it. Thank you, dear Pamela + Brian, for inviting us in and letting us document you. And your podium. ;)
Aistis + Meghan first met when Meghan, an agricultural satellite geographer, came to Madison from Boston to actually see agriculture. :) Their first date was a bike ride. And Madison is now their home. Aistis is in residency to become a family doctor, and a quarter of their 100 wedding guests are also on that same path!
There’s always so much we want to say about a wedding but… we’re not writers, we’re photographers ;) so we’ll just tell you two sweet memories from their the ceremony:
– Shortly after reciting a poem written by a late family member, Aistis’ father sat down and was then handed the rings for part of their ring warming ceremony. For a brief moment he touched them to his forehead. It was one of those moments that was so short that we can’t really believe we were able to capture it. Yet that small moment was so telling to the deep love, respect, and hope for his son and new daughter.
– Sweet baby Audra (who was born just five days after our little Rio!) wanted to make sure she was part of the ceremony. She let out a few baby cries in the middle of it and Meghan instinctively walked over to calm her, simply by letting her see her mama’s face. After a short cuddle followed by an applause, Audra was handed over to grandma and the show continued on. :) We find it so beautiful and refreshing when real life breaks the mold of perfection and when the participants (in this case, the bride and groom) just accept, respond to, and savor it.
Also, fyi — when a wedding day starts with friends at the water, we want to be there for that. :)
Some special credits to a few of their family members: Meghan’s mom was the talent behind every stitch of her wedding dress. Meghan’s sister (a Montessori teacher) put together the creativity station. Aistis’ sister designed and crafted the programs as well as the mason jar favors. Quite the talented family, yes. :)
Stephen and Jenna met while working in a NYC restaurant shortly after graduating from the same culinary school. Steve is from New York state originally, while Jenna grew up in Wisconsin and they currently reside in San Francisco.
When we asked these guys to describe what their wedding might be like, they said the theme would be “kegs, pig & pie”. :) Somehow, the theme for all the weddings we’ve photographed this year also seems to be mosquitos, sweat & rain – yikes! Thankfully, we have couples who deal with these elements with smiles on their faces… and mosquito bites on their backs. ;)
Without further ado, Jenna + Stephen at Lussier Family Heritage Center:
We love weddings that take place at venues we most likely will never be able to photograph again. Triglav Park will probably be one of those venues, since a couple needs a bit of an in to have a wedding there. Thankfully, Mara’s Slovenian heritage was the necessary connection to be able to get married at this beautiful, secret, unmarked gem, just outside of Milwaukee.
Something that hits us every wedding season, almost inevitably, (and honestly, almost every weekend) is the nervousness that the rains might ruin the day. Here’s the normal scenario: the forecast in the week leading up to the wedding shows clear skies, then it creeps to 30% chance of rain, then it sometimes takes a turn for the worse, leaving the couple/family/photographer/planner all checking the radar to decide if the ceremony should be moved inside or not. Since we photograph mostly outdoor ceremonies, we see it happen almost weekly, yet the rain never actually ruins the day! And in this very special circumstance, we might even argue that the rains *made* the day — truly, we’ve never seen such beautiful sun-drenched rain on a wedding day before.
So here’s a pro tip — if your photographer urges you to head out to a wobbly dock just as the rain is starting to come down, trust them. ;) Sam and Mara get lots and lots of bonus points (as well as non-reproducible photos) because of their willingness to fully embrace the rain – yay!
Here’s a little glimpse into their day – their lakefront ceremony, bocce-playing, BBQ-ing wedding at Triglav Park:
Sanborn Canoe Co – Winona, MN
Wooden Painted and Performance Paddles
Zak Fellman and Todd
If you follow us on social media, you have probably viewed this story about the amazing people at Sanborn Canoe Co. already, but if not… we recently started a collaborative project with other photographers around the United States in order to help foster the craftsmen resurgence. We are calling it Drift Journal. With the help of a growing list of amazing photographers, videographers, and writers we hope to highlight great craftsmen/artists in order to inspire more people to learn and appreciate heritage crafts. As a society we have reached a point where technology allows us to do many things with little effort. As a result we are using our hands less and so many great skills are slowly being forgotten.
Sanborn Canoe Co – Zak and Todd are two of the most unassuming, humble guys you may meet. Cousins, they both grew up in Minnesota each with a crazy love for the outdoors and a grandfather who, before they were born, carved out his own wooden canoe and took to the water. It was that canoe that inspired them build their own, and shortly after, start what is now Sanborn Canoe Co. And only a few short years later, with the help of a couple friends, they are carving some of the finest handcrafted paddles in North America. Here is a little look into their work.