Orlando Wedding Photographer ~ So…….Did You Stroll???

We were fortunate enough to be asked to help create and photograph all the marketing materials for this year’s Winter Park Bridal Stroll. After a full day of shooting all around Park Avenue, and of course of the Winter Park Farmer’s Market, we were able to produce some amazing images. If you are interested in seeing a behind the scenes video of the Winter Park Bridal Stroll Promo Shoot click HERE. A huge shout out and thank you to our stunning models, Katie & David, Shayna & Nick and Miss Lauren! Also, thank you to all the vendors and wedding professionals that came out and donated time, energy and artistic genius to make this shoot what is turned out to be!

Orlando Wedding Photographer ~ A Winter Park E*Session

We had a blast hanging out with and photographing Sarah and Tim’s engagement session. We met the couple at 310 Park South, in downtown Winter Park, Florida, for a snack and a chat to get to know them a bit. It was fun to talk about college sports once again, being a formal college baseball player myself, as Tim played basketball and Sarah played volleyball for their respective colleges! Seeing these two interact and talk about each other was delightful as both were smitten about each other and it showed. After walking and shooting around Park Avenue and the rose gardens, we headed back to Sarah’s families beautiful home to let them change and head to our next shooting location. Well, a quick pick up basketball game started between the two of them and we were lucky enough to capture some fun, playful images for them. We concluded the shoot with a stunning sunset, some beautiful photographs and many laughs! Thanks guys!!!

Destination Wedding Photographer ~ A little bit of everything……

We thoroughly enjoyed traveling down to Vero Beach, Florida to photography the wedding of Whitney and Trey. These two wanted a small intimate wedding ceremony and a grand reception…..and that is exactly what they got…….a little bit of everything! Both Whitney and Trey looked incredible and beamed with excitement as they wed under a beautiful old Florida oak tree at Long Shadows Ranch in front of their family and a few close friends. With horses running in the background, a beautiful, serene country style set up, and two families excited to share in such a special day, these Whitney and Trey chose a perfect setting for their wedding ceremony. After the ceremony, the bridal party loaded into the limo and started their trip to the reception at The Qual Valley River Club in Vero Beach, Florida, where several hundred guests waited for their arrival. The club was decorated elegantly, with food stations that included fresh fish, open flame BBQ steaks, a taco and burrito bar and of course the couples’ dingy that they found in the ocean and refinished to use as a cold drink cooler. After a beautiful evening of dancing, eating some incredible food, drinking some homemade apple pie moonshine, and sharing time with all who attended the night deemed a success and smiles were abound. Thank you Whitney and Trey for including us in your special day and we look forward to seeing your family grow! 

 

Destination Wedding Photographer ~ Black Cowboy Hats, Boots and a Pair of Red High Heels

We love traveling to and shooting weddings in Vero Beach, Florida! A little getaway that isn’t too far from home! One of the reasons why we love Vero Beach so much is being able to stay and shoot at the Vero Beach Hotel & Spa. Their rooms and staff are top notch and we truly feel like VIP’s when staying here. Well Amanda and Crockett had us down for their beautiful wedding and we started our day at the Hotel & Spa where the guys and girls got ready and a private first look before the wedding was set up. Amanda wore a stunning Maggie Sottero wedding gown, and some of the reddest red high heels, while the Crockett and the rest of the wedding party were all stylishly outfitted by Jay’s Bridal in Gainesville, FL. Adding to the wedding party look, each bridesmaid was gifted a pair of black cowboy boots and each groomsman received a black cowboy hat. After their first look, we had fun roaming the Hotel & Spa capturing some fun and intimate images of the soon to be married couple. It was a short drive to the Quail Valley Country Club, where an intimate outdoor ceremony, overlooking the marina, was performed, followed by a delectable dinner reception in the historic clubhouse that was well orchestrated by the staff and club coordinators flawlessly. All flowers and floral arrangements were provided by The Pink Pelican in Sebastian, FL, and both the groom’s and the wedding cake were designed and baked by Frostings in Vero Beach, FL. Everybody danced the night away and had a great time thanks to the beats and flow of DJ Evan Nine out of West Palm Beach, FL. This wedding was truly one of the most memorable ones for us. Working with great people like Amanda, Crockett and their families is always a pleasure. Cristy and I both wish these two the best in their wedded future. Thanks for the memories guys!!!

Orlando Wedding Photographer ~ Beauty at Casa

From start to finish, the wedding of Marissa and Chris, in charming Winter Park, Florida, was an absolute pleasure to be a part of. A stunning bride, a suave groom, a spectacular venue, and friends with a Ferrari always help! Not to mention, their original photographer was “double booked” for the day, which created the uneasy feeling of “who” was going to show up to photograph the wedding? So, we were contracted last minute to cover the wedding, which calmed the nerves of the bride and gave us the opportunity to photograph a beautiful couple. It is always a pleasure to shoot at Casa Feliz Historic Home & Museum, as the grounds and building itself have unlimited backdrops and potential to create striking images. Mood and up-lighting throughout the venue along with stellar DJ/Entertainment Services by the Fun Factory Entertainment. A jaw dropping wedding gown designed by Lazaro, purchased at The Collection on Park Avenue, Winter Park, looked beautiful on Marissa. A fabulous wedding cake, along with an totally cool groom’s golf course cake, was provided by Sprinkles, Winter Park. Tasty, unique, custom prepared food provided by Arthur’s Catering, and bar and beverage services by Barfly Bar Catering. To say the least, this was an awesome wedding to be a part of. Thank you Marissa and Chris for allowing us to be a part of your special day. We wish you all the luck in the world and can’t wait to see what the future holds for you and your family!

Orlando Photographer ~ Dear Susan… :(

Hello… Cristy here.  If you follow my facebook page at all you know that this past week was incredibly tough for me… I was asked to take on the hardest photo shoot ever in my photography career.  Without repeating myself, here’s my letter to Susan… a woman who has forever touched my heart and in only two short days changed so much about how I think and love.

Dear Susan:

You and I never met prior to Wednesday, yet I feel like somehow ours souls are connected in a way that I can’t even begin to explain or put into words, but I’m going to do my best to try…

On Monday my husband asked me about several posts that were swirling around on facebook after the news about your stroke.  I texted our mutual dear friend Maggie, to ask who everyone was talking about.  When she told me it was you, my heart hurt…. While we haven’t met I have heard of you over the years, seen your posts on friends pages, and knew you were an extraordinary woman.  As a mom of two girls, and me not being much older than you, it broke my heart to know that you and your family were going to be facing the biggest challenges of your lives.  The reality of the situation hit especially hard because you have such a young son.  I cried tears for you, a woman I hadn’t met, yet felt connected to all at the same time.  I religiously followed the beautiful website that your friend Theresa set up for you, I searched all of our mutual friends facebook pages for updates and posts, and the news was hard to read.  I started reading about strokes online, trying to gain as much knowledge and information as I could to try to understand.  The gravity of your situation was just so scary and difficult for me to comprehend.

On Wednesday your best friend Angela contacted me and asked if I would come to the hospital to take some photos of you with Matt and Andrew.  I of course, could not say no… although I have to be honest and admit I was so incredibly nervous and scared as I knew this would be the hardest work I had ever done behind my camera.  I called a fellow photographer friend on my way to the hospital, literally screaming, crying, cursing, and just asking her how the HELL would I do this, and how would I do it in such a way that would be beautiful, yet at the same time respectful of you, your family, your husband and your son.  My friend’s advice was to just DO… just be there, capture the love, the grace, and the emotions in the room.  I normally photograph birth so in a way this was similar given the hospital setting, yet SO very different…  The normal feelings of joy were replaced by deep sorrow and anguish.  My only goal was to make sure that Andrew had photos to someday help him understand this time, and to maybe give him some answers when he asks questions as he is getting older.  At the very least he would see very clearly just how much his daddy loves you…

At that point we were hopeful and optimistic that you would pull through… but when I got the hospital and saw you lying in the bed, the intensity of the situation hit me like a wall of bricks… and as hard as I tried to be strong and not cry I just had to let it go.  The tears fell like rain, down my face, onto my shirt and onto the floor.  The harder I tried not to cry, the more tears fell.  My hands were shaking, so much so that I had a hard time keeping my camera still.  I continued on through tears, knowing that these photos were for Andrew.  That was the only thing that made what I was doing make sense and feel even remotely okay…

I could see you fighting, I could see your spirit trying so hard to escape the situation you were in, you were so brave.  Even though you were connected to so many machines, tubes, and wires you were INSANELY beautiful, truly beautiful beyond anything I have ever seen.  You radiated light and love, and that was felt to the core by everyone there.  Your husband was so sweet with you, loving you every minute, and trying so hard to be strong for the rest of your family.  You could see the love in his eyes for you, when he cradled your hand in his, when he looked at you, and the way he touched your face.  Your parents and Matt’s were wonderful, talking to you, sitting at your bedside, and so wonderfully supporting Matt and helping care for Andrew.  Our midwife Kelli came to see you, prayed for you, held your hand much like I’m sure she did when Andrew was born.  It was so hard for me to see her in that place, because it felt so much familiar to how she is with laboring mamas.  You could tell that she adored you and loved you to her core.  Angela was truly amazing, and I will never forget watching her care for you, talking to you, telling you stories and laughing until she cried.  I know she is forever changed by your friendship and love for her.  And I know she will continue to care for and love Andrew as if he were her own son.  When I left that night I was hoping my next phone call would be that you woke up, and to come quick to get photos of that…. I knew I couldn’t just tell part of the story, I had to tell the rest too.

On Thursday Angela texted me at 2 pm, telling me to keep my phone close.  My heart sank, I could just feel that it wasn’t going to be good news.  By 6:30 she called and asked me to come… that Matt, Andrew, and your family would be saying their final goodbyes and could I come and capture that.  Again the rush of emotions came back… how can I do this, how can I make sure I am respectful, kind, unobtrusive and giving the space for your family to love you and say their goodbyes.  I arrived at the hospital and immediately knew you were gone… your spirit was profoundly felt in that room, but you were not in your body.  As hard as that was, I was at peace with this… knowing that you were no longer suffering, and free to be the beautiful light that you are.  I could feel the intense warmth and love all around you coming from every single person that walked into CCU room 3218.  I had asked Matt to bring your wedding bands, which I put into the palm of your hand and photographed.  A few minutes later Matt told me your anniversary is next week… again came the waterworks of tears.  I tried as best as I could to photograph all the little moments, the details, your dad holding your hand, your husband kneeling at your bedside, Andrew showing you his toy truck and touching your hand, and the prayer that the chaplain led.  I watched the nurses and staff prepare your body for organ donation, and for a moment felt a sliver of bright light in this knowing that so many families would be getting the phone call they had been dreaming of and that your selfless gift would save and impact so many more lives.  I feel forever bonded to your family after this… and I’ve never been through something so moving with strangers whom I can now call friends.

When I packed up my bag to go home for the night, knowing this was the last time I’d see you I took your hand, kissed your forehead and said thank you… with tears dripping off my face and onto yours, I thanked you from those of us who never had the divine opportunity to meet you prior to your passing.  You will never know how much you impacted so many strangers in such a huge way over these last days.  Thank you for sharing your love story with Matt with me, thank you for sharing the love of your family and dear friend Angela.  Mostly I thank you for giving me the gift of your presence, even though it was fleeting, it made me wish I had the chance to know you all along.  I hope that someday we can meet again, and start a beautiful friendship like so many others have had with you.  My heart breaks for your family, and for Matt especially.  His love for you is so strong, and I have no doubt that he will continue to love you eternally.  I’m certain that you are looking down upon us all with pride.  You have brought together a community filled with so much love and support for one another.  You taught me how to live in the moment and to let go of the little things.  Even though I only knew you two days, you will be remembered in my heart forever.  Thank you for that gift, and the honor and blessing of photographing your final two days on this earth, it truly means so much to me and my heart has grown bigger because of you…. Much love, Cristy.

I close this post with an image from Wednesday night, Susan’s hand being held by her husband Matt, and their son Andrew.  The other photos I took are being kept private and will be shared if and when Matt decides he’d like to do so.

Orlando Wedding Photographer ~ Guns, Bullets and Diamonds……an E*Session!

Cristy and I love shooting engagement sessions with our couples. It is great time to get to know each person individually as well as what really makes them tick as a couple. We always suggest an E*Session somewhere that has meaning or significance within the relationship. Whether that be at the beach, at special gardens, at a family summer home, or simply strolling down a street or hanging at a spot where fun and loving times are remembered. Lauren and Ben contracted us to shoot their April 2012 wedding, and when asked what they like to do together, they said shoot. Yep that’s right, they are both gun enthusiasts. So what did Cristy suggest? An engagement shoot at the gun range! Perfect! So we headed out to the Chuluota Sportsmen’s Club and Gun Range in Chuluota/Oviedo, Florida with a truck full of firearms and camera gear! Not only was this a first time shoot for us, but it turned out to be Cristy’s first time shooting a gun as well…..and I must say, she can shoot…..and not just a camera! After playing a bit at the gun range, we headed back to our train car studio and shot in and around the property! Watching these two interact and tell little jokes to each other was so much fun. Capturing a shot of Ben laugh……….priceless!!!

 

Cristy and I are both super excited to shoot Lauren & Ben’s wedding in the near future at one of our favorite wedding venues, Bella Collina, out in Montverde, Florida. A beautiful setting and grounds that will be outfitted with the fabulous floral designs by Lee Forrest with Lee Forrest Desgins, LLC, and a smooth sailing day organized by Michelle Butler of Michelle Butler Events! Just as exciting will be seeing friends and family of Lauren’s at the wedding, as she is not just a bride that came to us, but a family friend who we have had gotten to know and watch grow into a strong women over the years. Thank you Lauren and Ben, we are honored to be the ones to capture your special day!

Orlando Wedding Photographer ~ Bow Ties and Big Smiles!

So what do you do when the groom is wearing a bow tie, the bride is the only one who has tied his tie in years, nobody else around knows how to tie one, and the groom does not want to “see” the bride before the ceremony? Well you set up an impromptu meet and greet and have the groom swear not to open his eyes, as his soon to be bride ties his bow tie with a huge smile! Meet Carolyn and Dan, two incredibly down to earth people that we were fortunate enough to photograph their intimate wedding affair! You can tell by how these two interact and smile at each other that their love and respect for each other is deep and strong! We were excited to shoot at Henry Chapel at First Baptist Church, Orlando, as we had seen some beautiful images of the chapel and grounds. As we arrived, Carolyn was getting her hair and makeup done by the talented Wendy Wall from Gregory’s, Winter Park. It was cool watching her work and airbrush some of the makeup on. Wedding dress from David’s Bridal and bridesmaids dresses from Bridesmaids Inc., in Birmingham, AL.  Striking, yet classy, flowers and decor at all venues throughout the day was provided by Molly McMahon with Velvet & Twine, a new floral company on the scene that produced some gorgeous displays. The tree lined aisle and formal ceremony was reminiscent of the royal wedding, but the southern charm and mood of the families, friends and couple, not to mention Carolyn’s home made sandwiches beforehand, projected a laid back, simplistic and comfortable atmosphere. After the ceremony concluded everybody was invited to The Renaissance at Lake Ivanhoe, Orlando for the reception. This luxury condo building has an elegant white Grand Salon/Lobby that can be used for events such as this. With soft piano music in the background, Carolyn and Dan strolled throughout the room, conversing with guests, then, cut into some delectable wedding cakes, including a super delicious peanut butter and chocolate groom’s cake. Before we knew it, these two were thanking their guests and saying goodbye. Good luck Carolyn & Dan and thank you again for including us on your special day! 

Destination Wedding Photographer ~ High Heels and Big Skies…..an E*Session

Who would have thought that an engagement session could include so many things? A cool spot under an old train bridge, a stroll down a classic downtown Florida street, a quick thunderstorm that resulted in an incredible rainbow on the beach and then one of the most stunning sunsets we have ever seen. Amanda & Crockett’s shoot had all of that…..and then some. We met up with these two in old downtown Melbourne, Florida, and immediately fell into a comfortable groove where their obvious love and passion for each other resulted in some spicy yet beautiful images. Their wedding at the Quail Valley Golf & River Club in Vero Beach, FL is going to be fabulous!

Orlando Wedding Photographer ~ Come out for a stroll…..

The nielsens photography & design is proud to be a part of this year’s Winter Park Bridal Stroll on Sunday, February 19, 2012 in beautiful downtown Winter Park, Florida. Come on out and stroll down charming Park Avenue Sunday afternoon and visit with some of Central Florida’s most sought after wedding vendors that have been invited to this year’s event. Multiple vendors will be set up at venues along Park Avenue so you can meander down the avenue and meet many talented vendors in a short amount of time. Cristy and I will be set up inside 310 Park South, the delectable restaurant located at 310 Park Avenue and one of this year’s venue sponsors, from 11:00 AM through 3:00 PM. Who else is at 310 you ask? We will be hanging out with Orlando Wedding DJ’s White Rose Entertainment, custom cake designer Party Flavors, aisle decor specialists Artistic Aisle Runner and sugar and sweets designed by Maralyn’s Chocolates, to mention a few (please click on any of the above vendor names or locations for a direct link to their websites).

For advanced ticket purchases, a complete listing of all the vendors in attendance this year, times, locations, and other general stroll information, click HERE for the official Stroll website and for more information and the stroll’s Facebook fan page, click HERE.

See you on Park Ave!!!