The Clarke Wedding at Stone River
I can't say enough about Christina and Hayden. I met Christina at a bridal show in Columbia, SC, where she was a lucky winner for free bridal portraits! She was in nursing school, and her fiancee Hayden was working on the police force. I was excited when they told me about Symmes Chapel (aka Pretty Place) as an idea for engagement portraits. We made the journey, and it was absolutely stunning! It's still one of my favorite engagement sessions, and I look forward to going back to Pretty Place again.
The wedding ceremony was at Washington Street Methodist Church, which is the oldest church in Columbia. I got a sneak peek of the venue when we did Christina's bridal portraits there, and it was just stunning. Christina was involved with beauty pageants, which is obvious with how amazingly photogenic she is! I've only done a few bridal portrait sessions in a church, and this is one of my best. Before the ceremony, we did a first look with her father, which was very emotional and gave us amazing images. And then we also did a first look with her bridesmaids, which was super fun! Sabrina Seidenstricker from Studio B at the Old Mill did her hair, and Cory King was taking care of make-up for the bridal party. Hayden and her exchanged letters prior to the ceremony, and those are some of my favorite pictures of the day. Her sisters Jeana and Kara, and the other bridesmaids were all beautiful as well - and I look forward to shooting their weddings in the near future (wink, wink).
We went to Stone River for the reception, which is one of the best venues in Columbia. It has amazing views, and a very classy environment. I love that we got to do the bridal party photos right there on the river, with an amazing backdrop. And at night, we sneaked out of the reception and took the couple all the way down to the actual river water (it was super muddy) for a night-time portrait with the beautiful Gervais St bridge in the background. I think they stayed dry, but me not so much. It was a very tough shot to get, but we nailed it!
The cake was made by Bonnie Brunt - it was not only gorgeous, but delicious. The flowers were beautiful - Karrie made the bouquet and Christina made the centerpieces (Hayden even helped!). And Soundquest DJs kept us dancing all night! I was right in the middle of the floor getting amazing dance pictures - while dancing, of course. But Christina's little brother was the dance floor captain! After tons of great dancing, we sent them off with a sparkler exit! It was a perfect day, and I know these two will spend a lifetime of happiness together! Thanks so much for allowing me to be a part of it.
She needed some tall shoes for that tall groom!
Beautiful ring shot on a family heirloom.
Candy fixed the crying... instantly.
Cory King, literally the king of make-up
Write those love letters!
What a bouquet!
Hayden looking extra dapper.
Emotional moment while reading her letter from Hayden.
And Hayden reading his letter from Christina.
Two at once?!?
What a sanctuary!
Mom helping her into the dress.
First look with dad.
First look with bridesmaids.
Christina's sisters helping her with the veil.
Hayden's first time seeing his bride in her dress!
Dad walking her down the aisle.
Right after the first kiss.
Let's make it official!
Look at that bridal party!
Notice that one bouquet all the way up there!
What a photogenic couple!
And an amazing view!
This cake was fantastic!
Introducing the couple into the reception!
They had a perfect first dance.
I love catching these moments!