Downtown Detroit

Matt + Liz

I met Liz for coffee a few months back to chat about her and Matt's winter 2018 wedding. The moment we sat down at our little, local coffee shop I knew she and I would become quick friends. The conversation was natural and easy- as we chatted about life, wedding planning and travel.  I was so excited when right there on the spot she let me know she would love to have me photograph her and Matt's big day.  

Last month I met up with these two at their downtown Detroit apartment for their engagement session. Matt quickly made me feel as welcomed and comfortable as Liz did at our first coffee meeting.  These two have so much fun together, and I couldn't help but notice how comfortable and safe they seemed to feel when they were close to one another.  Not to mention, I was so thankful for the way Matt offered to serve me during their session- offering to carry my bag and step stool since I have pretty much perfected my pregnancy waddle these days.  

I had such a wonderful evening exploring the city with these two.  Detroit was certainly showing off.  The setting sun, budding trees, and a city that continues to surprise me with each new restaurant and ground breaking for new buildings.  What a fun and exciting place to start your life together, and I loved being able to capture a little part of their story in the city.  Enjoy all of the planning, Matt and Liz- and I can't wait to see you say 'I do!'

Troy + Lauren

I absolutely loved the chance to have Lauren and Troy in front of my camera.  Ted and I met these two last year at church, and they have become quick friends.  They are other-centered and caring, and are always making their friends a priority.  I have been so thankful to get to know them better and to get to do life together.  So getting to celebrate their anniversary with them was an added bonus!  

We planned a downtown engagement session to commemorate their first year of marriage and move to Michigan from out of state. We ended up with a grey, windy day which made for such a romantic backdrop, and the perfect excuse to cuddle up close!  Our session started at the Z Parking Lot and we finished in Campus Martius.  These two were so comfortable in front of the camera, and made my job so much fun.  I love that years from now, wherever life might take them, they will always have these photographs from Detroit together to remember the excitement and changes that accompanied their first year of marriage.  Happy (belated) anniversary, Lauren and Troy! 

Marli- Class of 2018

I am still playing all of the catchup over here on blog posts from 2017, and I love it! It is so much fun to relive so many of the incredible sessions from the past year.  Up today is Marli's senior session.  I had so much fun working with Marli.  She brought her sister and her mom to the shoot and they were absolutely hilarious.  They were cracking me up the whole time.  Sometimes having a crowd can be nerve-wracking for seniors, but for Marli it was the perfect way to keep her smiles natural and fresh. 

I love Marli's style.  The way she added accessories like hats and jackets to her outfit is another great way to keep the pictures fresh and natural.  We started Marli's session at Maybury State Park and ended in downtown Detroit. I love how the lights started to come out during the end of our time together.  These are some of my favorite photos from the session, and they make me want to shoot even later into golden hour more often!  With an infectious smile, outgoing personality, and boundless confidence, I can't wait to hear about all of the amazing places life takes you after graduation, Marli! 

David + Rebecca

David and Rebecca are two of our very closest friends. We all met in college and since graduation, getting married, buying houses and new jobs we have done a lot of life with them.  Thankfully we live just a few blocks away so there are lots of- what are you doing for dinner? Want to do that together- phone calls. These two always challenge and encourage us.  They have answered the phone in the middle of the night and met us at the hospital, ran to our house when we forgot our travel itinerary and were already at the airport, prayed for us, and fed us more meals than I can count (because Rebecca is an insanely talented chief). They have also been our travel companions, euchre competition (always boys verse girls), and fellow beach bums. 

These two have so much going on right now, so we hopped downtown to update their headshots and to get some anniversary pictures, as they are coming up on two years of marriage.  Rebecca just launched her new business- Northland Web Design and Development.  I am so proud of this girl.  She has worked so hard all summer to educate herself, grow, and launch this business. Her dedication blows me away.  Be sure to check out her website here, and if you need any web design I would highly recommend her!

Rebecca found this awesome spot downtown.  It was so much fun to checkout a new location, and I quickly added it to my list of favorite places to shoot.  Detroit has so many awesome streets to explore and this neighborhood had a little bit of everything.  We ended the shoot over at Eastern Market and then inside the Detroit Institute of Bagels.  We mostly went to Detroit Institute of Bagels because David and I love our bagels, but then of course when we got there and saw how cute it was inside we snapped a few more pictures!  So thankful for you two, David and Rebecca- thanks for letting us do life with you!

Steve + Caiti's Glamorous Gem Theater Wedding

We had been looking forward to Caiti and Steve's downtown Detroit wedding for months, and for so many reasons. First, Ted and I couldn't wait to join with Caiti and Steve's family and friends and celebrate this couple. Caiti and Steve are pure gold.  We share mutual friends, so we have spent time with the couple in the past and they always make everyone around them feel welcomed and loved. Caiti and Steve can come into a new group of people and seem like they have known everyone since childhood, even if it is their first time meeting everyone in the room.  Little did we know that their family and friends would treat Ted and me the same way.  Making us feel like a part of the party the entire day!

Secondly, we are suckers for downtown Detroit weddings.  The city is thriving and it is so fun use the Motor City as a wedding day backdrop. We shot at a few of my favorite downtown locations throughout the day and I felt like the city was just showing off. Exploring all of my favorite spots with this gorgeous bridal party made it all the more special!  Caiti and Steve's ceremony and reception were held at the Gem Theater.  The Gem is an iconic location in the city, and made for such a unique venue for their wedding day. 

Lastly, we couldn't wait for Caiti and Steve's wedding day because we knew it would be filled with so much laughter. And we were so right about this one!  Caiti and Steve have a relationship where they constantly keep each other laughing. We started noticing this when we spent time with Caiti and Steve as friends, and then at their engagement session.  During their engagement shoot Steve kept Caiti laughing the entire time. Even when I would encourage a soft, quiet moment these two would burst into laughter together. It was the best.  Because that is exactly who they are as a couple. 

Laughter is such an incredible trait to share as you embark into married life.  Some of our favorite moments are the ones where Ted and I just laugh together.  Because married life can get messy, and life gets busy, and sometimes the best source of comfort at the end of a long day is just laughing together. Laughing about the small things and sometimes laughing about the big things that you can't change.  Knowing how to make your spouse laugh is such a gift, and Caiti and Steve certainly have that gift!  Not to mention that they have a pretty wonderful support system that keeps life lighthearted and hilarious right along with them.  

Caiti and Steve's wedding lived up to all of our expectations. We explored our favorite city, laughed along with Caiti, Steve and their bridal party, and watched two of the kindest people vow to love each other unconditionally and through whatever life may bring them.  Thank you for letting us capture there memories with you, Caiti and Steve! Cheers to a lifetime of laughter together! 

Paul + Susan's Downtown Detroit Wedding

I am so excited to share Susan and Paul's wedding photographs with you!  This couple's lives have been intertwined since they were kids.  They went to high school together, and started dating a few years later.  From listening to Susan's sister's speech it sounds like once they reconnected they were inseparable!  The two moved to Detroit and during that time Paul proposed to Susan on the steps of the Detroit Institute of Art.  One of the most beautiful buildings in the city!  They have since moved to Washington, D.C., but celebrated their wedding back in the city where their love story began. 

When Susan contacted me about photographing her and Paul's wedding I was so honored.  Susan and I attended Albion College together, so it was particularly fun to reconnect and get to spend the day with her and her family and friends. Spending the morning in the bridal suite while the girls got ready was a particular highlight.  Most of the ladies had grown up together, so their jokes flowed back and forth as they leisurely enjoyed the morning together.  I was pleasantly surprised when I went down a few floors to hang with the guys. They were equally as welcoming and fun! They welcomed me into their group, and we had a blast wondering the city for their guy photos.  I love that Paul wanted to stop into Lafayette Coney Island for a few photos.  If you are from Detroit you know it is Lafayette vs. National and we are a Lafayette family, so I was very happy with his choice!

The ladies also looked completely stunning against the backdrop of the city.  They stopped traffic and got more than a few whistles from people passing by ;) The wedding ceremony took place at Ste. Anne's Catholic Church and it was incredible.  These old churches always amaze me, and I was left standing in awe that this was the space where Paul and Susan chose to commit their lives to each other.  Such a memorable moment.  The rain started at just about the same time as the ceremony. Luckily, Susan and Paul were just happy to enjoy the day together.  So rain or shine, we still snuck over to the DIA for a few photographs of the couple following their ceremony.

They ended the evening at the Westin Book Cadillac with one awesome party!  Thoughtful speeches that praised the way the couple compliments each other, a first dance song sung by the bride's mother, and a dance floor that was packed the entire evening were just a few of the highlights. Susan and Paul are clearly so loved and respected by their family and friends and I think that says a lot about who they are individually and as a couple.  They treat those around them with so much love and they truly honor their relationships, so of course everyone wanted to be there to celebrate their big day! Congratulations, Susan and Paul! And thank you for letting me be a part of something so beautiful!