Nashville’s documentary wedding photographer
and headshot studio.
A year or so ago, Danielle and Megan were in Nashville, where I live and Danielle secured my services to photograph the proposal in Downtown Nashville (unbeknownst to Megan at the time). I was honored to document that memory for them, and even more honored that they thought of me to be their wedding photographer / storyteller of choice. Danielle announced their plans to have a beautiful Savannah LGBT wedding as pride month kicked off, at The Alida Hotel, Downtown Savannah, Ga. I love destination weddings, and this one in particular served two purposes. First and foremost, tell the story of Danielle and Megan’s day. Also, explore Savannah and take a couple days to stay on Tybee Island and enjoy the beach. It didn’t suck. Styling by Blush Hair And Makeup Artistry.
I come and go during prep, so it doesn’t become weird and posed. In my wanderings, I documented some of the features of the hotel, including rooftop views that show the stormy and moody weather that we had that afternoon. The ceremony was going to take place on the rooftop, which would have been awesome. Though with anything wedding, both the couples and photographers must go with the flow adapt quickly, as certain things like weather are out of our control. The hotel quickly provided a conference room overlooking the pool as a weather contingency plan.
The reception room neighbored the rooftop and had a great view of Downtown Savannah and the Savannah River. The bar and catering were in-house, and dinner was delicious! Cake by Wicked Cakes.
It was a great day with Megan and Danielle, and here’s to a great future! Thanks to the couple and The Alida for hosting us for the magical Savannah LGBT wedding at the kickoff of pride month!
Choosing between studio or outdoor headshots-
Most professional headshots I do are for business and professional use. People applying for new jobs, starting new businesses, new careers, and needing flattering representation of themselves to help propel them into their next journey. Or else, their look changes and they want to keep their headshot current and relevant, which is also a good and responsible idea. Some clients are in need of a corporate style headshot, which is usually done in studio. Others are in a more creative or freelance field and may prefer an outdoor, ambient vibe to their headshots. I will share some thoughts that may help you decide between studio or outdoor headshots. If you can’t decide, there’s always chocolate vanilla swirl if you can’t pick a flavor. 🙂
That was an example of a studio headshot. It’s hard to go wrong either way. A professional headshot shows effort and commitment. A cell phone snap doesn’t show the same level of seriousness. This lady works for an investment firm, so the vibe is best left corporate, with no distracting backgrounds or excessive jewelry. Also, depending on the time of year, the studio being climate controlled helps avoid sweat or looking like the abominable snowman in cold weather. The next example, a studio headshot would have worked for this young realtor. However, he preferred the more casual vibe of an outdoor setting that may appeal to younger home buyers, and making it a casual and fun experience. I think it worked perfectly for his goals.
I remember him asking where the best outdoor location would be. He said he would be in West Nashville that day, so I randomly suggested Richland Park. In short, it makes NO DIFFERENCE where we do it. We’re talking a headshot that ideally is from the sternum up. If an outdoor headshot is desired, an outdoor vibe without a ton of background distractions is close to where we are. In my opinion, if you can identify buildings in the background, it defeats the purpose of a headshot, which is supposed to showcase the face of the subject. For portrait work, I can better understand location importance. I’m not all googly over shallow depth of field, as a general rule, but it helped accomplish the goal here. He got his outdoor headshot without tons of background distractions. K.I.S.S. (we all know what that means)
Recently, I had the honor and privilege of photographing a destination wedding In historic Savannah Georgia, for a special couple whose proposal I photographed in my hometown of Nashville, Tennessee. The couple chose Savannah and one of the nicest hotels / Savannah wedding venues, The Alida in downtown Savannah. I love photographing destination weddings and the adventures of travel. My assistant and I stayed on Tybee Island and navigated into the city on Danielle and Megan’s wedding day. It was warm, though heavy rains had started soon before our arrival. Which in itself, is not bad luck. Each wedding day is about telling a story about all that went right, the love that surrounded the couple, and the hurdles. So, the show went on. I photographed some location details of the hotel and i wanted to share some of those photos with you. Next article will include photos of the wedding itself.
I was glad that the valets quickly got me inside and parked my car for me before I looked like a wet hedgehog, haha. I love how the hotel was LGBT friendly for the couple and a ballroom was quickly available when rain prevented the rooftop ceremony from happening as planned. The in-house catering was delicious, and the servers were very friendly and efficient. There are many different fantastic views of Savannah from the rooftop and balconies. I felt as though I was among friends and certainly would look forward to returning. If you’re looking for a lovely hotel, or one of the nicest Savannah wedding venues / event venues, look no further.
No one can say these past two plus years haven’t been interesting and challenging. However, that doesn’t mean I care to repeat many things about this time period! Lena and Ali had a wrench thrown in their wedding plans when Covid-19 changed life as we knew it. Metro ordinance restricted public gatherings to eight people, maximum. The couple relied on virtual technology to include loved ones who were unable to attend, and it was a lovely day despite awkward times we lived in. Their plan was to have a dedicated reception when the dust settled. Fast forward to May 14, 2022, they had a fun-filled Cafe Azafran reception in South Nashville!
When Covid restrictions eased up and hospitalizations went down, Lena and Ali made a date and I was honored to have been chosen to document this part of their story as well! Now friends, family, and neighbors could safely gather with the couple and celebrate their milestone together! The event began with greeting / cocktail hour, and live music by Jesse Labelle. Then dinner to follow, and it was delicious! Thompson Kitchen served rice, braised pomegranate beef brisket, edamame vegetable medley and more. The couple had a brief dance, and guests enjoyed visiting, listening to music, enjoying cocktails and dancing until it was time to close the joint down. Special thanks to my assistant, Katie, and Gina the wedding planner! Bar staff courtesy of The Drinking Well. Thank you Lena and Ali for trusting the my vision at their documentary Nashville wedding photographer.
The reconvening of old friends and accomplishing a goal together is a plan coming together indeed! I met Melissa (Bug) through my long-time friend James Magnum Cook, and when she found her person, Jeremy, I was honored that they chose me to be their wedding storyteller. Bug and Jeremy live in North Texas, and Magnum and I would be traveling together since he lives in Bowling Green. We did the math and decided to drive since it wasn’t very convenient to DFW airport. So it was a road trip for a great Texas destination wedding!
The venue, Clark Gardens was absolutely gorgeous, and boasted acres of lush gardens, fountains, walking trails, and a resident peacock! It was a great event venue with garden space, tent space, a chapel, and changing quarters on-site.
The poolside garden ceremony was beautiful, despite the heat! The weather was unseasonably hot for early May. Though pleasant upon our early afternoon arrival, temperatures soared to 96 degrees. Fortunately the guests had shade, and the reception was under a giant tent which made it manageable. The day was filled with love and excitement, nonetheless! Officiant, Lisa McDaniel prepared an abbreviated ceremony for the sake of the comfort of the couple and those standing with them.
DJ Keezy kept the tunes spinning for the reception, while some danced and enjoyed sweet tea / cocktails served by the bar staff! Pulido’s Mexican Restaurant kept guests (and us) well fed with a delicious taco bar. Bug and Jeremy wanted a day for their friends and family to gather, and be enjoyed by all. Mission accomplished. That’s one reason they chose me to document their memories, to experience the unposed freedom of documentary wedding photography and avoid hours of sore feet and fake smiles, orchestrated by a photographer. This way, they had exactly the day they wanted, and not one navigated by a photographer. I’m excited to see the next chapter in their lives, and to have had a successful trip and Texas destination wedding. Your Nashville documentary wedding photographer signing off for now, with reception photos! Congrats Buggles and Jeremy.