Photos are great a documenting all sorts of things: the landscape, the people in it, and how they’re feeling at that very moment. One of the few things that photos aren’t very good for, is conveying temperature (absent any tell-tale signs of snow, spindly trees, or other seasonal cues). And let me tell you, for Caitlin & Clayton’s engagement session in Midtown Manhattan – it was FREEZING. It was certainly a big change from their old stomping grounds of Florida, and these two were absolute troopers for braving a New York winter day with yours truly. We started their engagement session inside the toasty Grand Central Terminal (I’m almost pretty sure this is the first time it’s ever been described this way), made our way towards Bryant Park, and wrapped up their session in South Street Seaport with the city lights twinkling behind them. The best part about hanging out in the city on a cold evening such as this? You get to have the city to yourself, and nobody can tell you otherwise.
After our amazing engagement session with Crystal & Mark earlier last year, I was seriously looking forward to their wedding celebrations at The Loft at Jack’s Barn. As other professional photographers will tell you, it takes a special kind of couple to get such a tremendous yield in such a short amount of time. It’s almost like getting a Sims character with max stats from the get-to; you have no idea how it happened, but you’d be foolish not to take it and run! Crystal & Mark’s wedding at The Loft at Jack’s Barn would be no different – which is officially now one of my favorite wedding venues in New Jersey. Simple, rustic, cozy, and with character bursting at the seams, this venue was a true reflection of the couple themselves. From a wedding photographer’s standpoint, JUST LOOK AT ALL THOSE CAFE LIGHTS!!! There aren’t enough heart-eye emojis in the world to convey our level of excitement while shooting at this venue!
Venue: The Loft at Jack’s Barn // Catering: David’s Country Inn // Ceremony/Officiant: Jonathan Almanzar // Hair: Alex Quici // Make-up: Rachel Lynn // Dress: Bijou Bridal // Shoes: Jimmy Choo // Groom’s Attire: Ralph Lauren // Jewelry: Walter Ackner // Floral/Décor: A Cottage Gardner // Entertainment: Allure One Entertainment // Stationery: 4lovepolkadots.com // Planner/Coordinator: Kim Bakke
When I received a surprise email from Nicole a year-and-a-half ago, I was utterly speechless. Never mind the fact that she’s surrounded by all that photography talent down there in the DC/Baltimore Metro area, or the fact I still managed to have people on my friends list whom I’ve yet to officially photograph (honestly, I thought I got all of you already!). In all seriousness though, the most touching thing about her email was that she’d been a fan of our work since the very beginning. So unless you’re my mother, there are very few people in the universe who’ve been fans of my work for longer than Nicole. That realization, as a photographer who literally started from nothing, to have someone supporting you from the very beginning, to say to themselves “When it’s my turn, I’m going to reach out to Ben.” – receiving her touching email was one of the biggest compliments I’d ever received in my career.
But back to the main character of this story :).
We arrived at Nicole & Joe’s respective hotel suites that morning at the Hotel Monaco in downtown Baltimore. It was late Fall, the air was brisk, and it was quite clear everyone was ready to celebrate a wedding, halloween and the Ravens – though not necessarily at the same time, nor in that order. I personally loved seeing all the familiar faces from my high school and college days, but one of my favorite parts of this wedding was the gorgeous-ness of EVERYTHING. You really could not ask for a more beautiful church, nor could you ask for a more amazing reception space. The George Peabody Library had been on my bucket list of awesome wedding venues in Baltimore for quite some time now, and I was simply more than elated to share that experience with this equally amazing couple. From the bottom of our hearts, we wish you two the very, very best on this next chapter of your journey together – and we can’t thank you enough for sharing your day with us!
Venue: George Peabody Library // Catering: Classic Catering // Ceremony: Corpus Christi Catholic Church // Hair: Tina Apicella // Make-up: Susan Lim // Dress: Maggie Sottero, Betsy Robinson Bridal Collection // Veil: Fabulous Frocks // Shoes: Jessica Simpson // Groom’s attire: Indochino // Jewelry: Sackowitz Jewelers // Floral: My Flower Box // Lighting: Event Pro // Entertainment: Jason Wallace // Stationery: Minted // Day of Coordination: Bird of Paradise Events
It was my first session of the New Year, and I was eager to dust off my cameras which had been on a break of….all of two weeks (because, you know….holiday weddings are sorta-kinda our thing). Knowing it was going to be a cold one, I rattled off several indoor locations in/around New York City – some of which were more off-the-beaten-path than others. Chelsea & James surprised me by picking the most obscure/least obvious choice, and I soon found myself in the same exact building where I was 5 years ago, in all its pre-construction glory. Of course, there have been lots of changes in the past 5 years. For starters, I don’t explore abandoned buildings with clients anymore (these legs don’t run as fast as they used to!), and I’ve somehow managed to evolve into a scotch drinker (though both are mutually exclusive,…probably). After spending a considerable amount of time lounging around this wonderful hidden find, we took to the streets of South Street Seaport to continue their engagement session – only to be greeted with white-out conditions. Let’s give a bajillion kudos and a well-deserved applause to Chelsea for wearing her heels in this crazy weather!
It was cold and raining when we arrived at Alex & Steve’s suites in Washingtonville that morning. These two were in high spirits, regardless. Afterall, they had planned the perfect wedding at the most perfect venue. Great food, great live-music, and thank God for outdoor heat lamps :). Alex & Steve tied the knot at the FEAST at Round Hill, a rustic venue space just bursting at the seams with character and charm. So of course, we couldn’t resist the opportunity to steal these two lovebirds away for a few moments after the rain had stopped (cold? what cold? – again, thank God for outdoor heat lamps!).
Venue & Catering: FEAST at Round Hill // Officiant: The Honorable Alan Marrus from Judges for Love // Hair & Make-up: MG Hair & Makeup // Dress: Bliss by Monique Lhuillier // Shoes: Badgley Mischka // Groom’s attire: Jos. A. Bank // Jewelry: Ultimate Jewelry Designs & family heirlooms // Floral/Décor: F.H. Corwin Florist and Greenhouses // Entertainment: Nick Ruggiero from A Perfect Blend Entertainment // Cocktail Hour Jazz Band: Calvin Hill Quartet // Stationery: Reed Cohen Papers & Events // Favors: DIY