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“She’s the real deal,” Matt was told by Colleen’s family shortly after their first date, and he was told again at their Hobbs Tavern wedding reception — “she’s the real deal,” Colleen’s sisters said, to laughter, tears, and applause.  Christine and I, too, think she is the real deal, but let me tell you what that means.  You’re the real deal when love and connection govern your life, when nothing is more important to you than your family and friends.

She’s the real deal, but we would also say, so is Matt, and so is all of Matt and Colleen’s entire family.  We were blown away by the joy and openness between these two families as they came together to embrace Matt & Colleen’s marriage.  Happy tears throughout, from their getting ready at beautiful Mills Falls at Church Landing, through their wedding ceremony in a charming country church, to their celebratory reception at Hobbs Tavern and Brewery in West Ossipee, NH.  Among the happily tearful included two wedding photographers, whose hearts burst to document such an overflowing display of life and love.

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An amazing party capped the night off, courtesy live band Emergency Broadcast System and a special guest on saxophone: Colleen’s grandfather!  Matt & Colleen: we had such a fantastic time at your wedding and we’re so happy for you both!  Can’t wait to share the rest of the pics with you!

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“The meaning of life,” Ethan’s best man said in a touching speech, “is to be happy.”  These words, we learned, were uttered by an adolescent Ethan during a long and beautiful day in which the two of them wandered the forest and contemplated their futures.  That Ethan embraced such a philosophy at a young age is unsurprising.  For one thing, he has the calm presence of someone who’s found his place within the adventure.  For another, he is obviously happy.  Ethan’s best man continued that for Ethan, happiness had blossomed in his relationship with Victoria.  The two of them beamed at that moment, as they had been all day.

The sun also beamed throughout their wedding day — through the treeblooms in the Boston Garden, into the atrium in which they were married, over the city’s river-reflection and through the glass face of Dante Restaurant where they held their reception.  Victoria and Ethan might deceive you as a mellower couple — they’re both very smart, accomplished, and well-spoken — but once the music hit, they got down.  This is what happiness looks like when it finds you.

It was such a pleasure to document their day and we’re very excited to share these pictures with them!  Ethan and Victoria, we wish you the very best!

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This wedding had it all: a fire-filled bridal party ready to let loose, a gorgeous venue, and, of course, a charming couple deeply in love.  Pete & Katie, who live in the Boston area, trekked up to Mills Falls at Church Landing with all their adoring friends & family to celebrate a winter wedding — ski-themed, rustic wintry details abounding.

Though Pete & Katie had hoped for a snow-laced backdrop to their wedding photos, nature was gracious enough to kiss their wedding morning with a layer of snow, and then, as though feeling the warmth of the celebrations, an early breath of Spring melted the gift and made the venue’s beautiful grounds a little moist and muddy.  No worries, though!  The couple’s winter theme saved the day: Pete & Katie gifted all their wedding party with KP-engraved L.L. Bean boots!

Our first wedding of 2016 — and what a great way to start it out.  We had a fantastic time with this amazing couple and their gracious and fun-loving guests!  Big thanks to Boston-based Groovin’ You for taking the celebration to the stratosphere, and to Megan from the Ford Flower Company for her gorgeous arrangements.

Pete & Katie — we had such a blast with you all and it was a total joy to capture such an important day in your lives.  I hope your ski honeymoon in Japan and Bali is everything you both deserve!  Enjoy the pics & we can’t wait to share the rest!

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You ever met someone who can’t stop smiling?  You’re about to.  Meet Erin, bride of Pete, and welcome to their fabulous wedding a few weeks back at one of my favorite venues, Church Landing at Mills Falls in Meredith, NH.  What you’re about to see are among my favorite Church Landing wedding photos.

To set the tone, I’ll tell you that when I spoke to Pete the morning of the wedding and asked him how things were going, he said, “Well, we just got done water-skiing together, so things are going great!”  Water-skiing on the morning of your wedding day?  Smiles.  These two are all smiles, and in addition to loving each other deeply they have a blast together.  And that made for great wedding photos.

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We met outside Church Landing by the waterfront for a first look.  These smiles tell it all.

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While Pete & the guests waited for Erin in the ceremony tent, she made the most dramatic processional I’ve seen: by boat!

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There are few venues in New Hampshire more generous when it comes to Church Landing, for wedding photos.  We toured the grounds for a little while and captured a battery of images of the couple in love.

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After eight years of taking wedding photos, I consider the truest test of a great toast is whether you can not only make the couple and guests laugh, but whether you can also make the photographer laugh.  I’m on the other side of the lens, so maybe you can’t tell — or maybe you can.

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Pete & Erin clearly love to dance.  With each other.

Church Landing Wedding Photo

Special thanks to the extremely talented Wayne Chinnock for his work as a second shooter.  Erin & Pete, we had so much fun on your day and can’t wait to share the rest of your Church Landing wedding photos with you!  Congratulations to you both!

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A few weeks back we spent the day with Heather & Lee, a super-charming couple who had almost as much fun designing their wedding as they did laughing all the way through it.  You ever have those days where you’re like, “Now Bill Murray this would be a good day to repeat Groundhog Day-style.”  Maybe not.  I do, and this was one of those days for me.  Beautiful people with great energy, a couple completely in love, and a kicking sense of design to boot — endlessly fun opportunities for photos.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot to mention, they’re swing dancers.  Really, really good ones.  Like, they’re instructors.  So we knew this was going to be a killer first dance.  We were right.

One last thing: Mechanics Hall is an absolutely breathtaking venue.

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Heather & Lee: we’re as excited about these photos as we also are that maybe — you know, maybe, you’re accepting new swing dancing students.  Count us in.

Holy cow, what an amazing night.  We adore you both.  Thank you.

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Two weeks ago we took a beautiful trip into beautiful, beautiful Vermont — okay, I’m not able to find the words at the moment, so if you don’t know what I mean, you’ll just have to visit the state yourself to find out — to find one of our all-time favorite venues, the Woodstock Inn — and if you don’t know why it might be our favorite venue, well, you’ll just have to visit it for yourself to find out — and we did this to be a part of Dave and Melanie’s wedding, and I’d tell you also to visit their wedding, too, but you can’t, because it only happened once.  Good thing we took pictures.

Dave and Melanie hail from New York City, but they came up here because it’s, you know, beautiful.  They had an amazing day.  Laughter, love, and parasols.  What else do you need?

Gorgeous floral arrangements below courtesy Ellen Snyder, who is as pleasant and uplifting to work with as she is talented.  Also big thanks to Nancy Jeffries-Dwyer, our favorite VT wedding planner, for her work to make the day smooth and stress-free.

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The Woodstock Inn’s gorgeous grounds lent themselves well to a pretty first look.

Oh, the dog down there: that’s no mere dog.  That’s Twig.  She’s a full-fledged member of the family, by the way.

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Dave and Melanie, thank you for including us on such a beautiful day.  We had a fantastic time, and we’re so happy for you both.  Can’t wait to share the rest of the pictures with you!

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We’ve really been looking forward to Steve & Nikki’s wedding at the Red Barn at Outlook Farm, since we shot Nikki’s sisters Sam’s wedding a few years back.  It’s always awesome to regroup with familiar faces for a second time!  And we weren’t disappointed– Steve and Nikki have a fantastic energy between them and friends and family on both sides were so warm and celebratory.

Steve and Nikki met in Pennsylvania during their college years, with Steve at Penn State and Nikki at Villanova.  Their wedding party took place at the lovely Red Barn in South Berwick, MA.  It was a daytime wedding which can sometimes be a little more subdued than evening weddings, but not this one!  Nikki and Steve’s loved ones partied like it was New Year’s Eve, with the bride and groom setting the pace.  This was an all around incredible wedding with incredible people!

Red Barn at Outlook Farm Wedding
Red Barn at Outlook Farm Wedding
Red Barn at Outlook Farm Wedding
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Red Barn at Outlook Farm Wedding

Steve and Nikki, we had such an amazing time documenting your day at the Red Barn at Outlook Farm and we so glad to see your family again.  We wish you all the best and hope that you are enjoying your honeymoon!

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Anthony and Holly have an amazing connection.  It was obvious after their first look, when they both relaxed into a state of smiling and warmth that didn’t end for the rest of the night.  The story goes, they actually lived together as college roommates for an entire year before they ever got together, just hanging out, talking, sharing — what a great base for a marriage!  Holly’s father said during the toasts that as he helped Holly move in to that college apartment (long before the love connection), he met Anthony and thought, “I hope my daughter ends up finding someone like this young man.”  Little did any of them know that his wish would actually come true!

Their “getting ready” took place at the Royal Senesta, a beautiful hotel overlooking the Charles River, and the ceremony took place at Dante, a charming Italian restaurant nestled in the hotel’s shadow (and winner of the coveted “Best of Boston” award for best Italian restaurant in 2008 & 2011!).  Cocktail hour on the restaurant patio, overlooking the Charles, was filled with laughter and raves over Dante’s delectables, and the party moved indoors for a night of dancing and celebration.

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What a fantastic wedding! Holly and Anthony, we are so grateful to have met you and to have taken these Dante wedding photos.  Congratulations and we hope your honeymoon in Rome has been a blast!

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Recently Christine and I had the pleasure of touring the beautiful grounds at Shaker Village (one of my all-time favorite spots for engagement photos) with Yvaine and Mark, a really fun and charming couple who just moved to Boston from the west coast.  Mark is an avid outdoorsman (a world traveler and stunt pilot, also, we learned!) so the natural surrounds and stunning sunset provided ample backdrop for these photos, which they plan on displaying at their upcoming wedding ceremony in Beijing, China.

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We had so much fun with these lovebirds!  Mark & Yvaine, thanks for letting us photograph your engagement; it was such a pleasure getting to know you two!  We hope that your upcoming travels are amazing and wish you a fantastic wedding overseas!

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We’re really excited to share with you Kaitlin and Patrick’s Boston wedding at the New England Aquarium!  We photographed their engagement shoot last year and saw what a fun couple they are and what a special connection they enjoy, and knew this wedding was going to be a hum-dinger.

It was.

What an incredible day!  Katie got ready at the Boston Marriott Long Wharf (love this hotel, so beautiful), which is only a short walk to the aquarium and overlooks the bay. Patrick got ready with friends and family at the Boston Harbor Hotel in an elegant room that had a stunning view of the city from its balcony. Patrick went to Katie’s hotel where they shared a touching first look, and it was off to the aquarium for a beautiful ceremony right on the bay.  For anyone who might be worried that a first look robs you of the specialness of that moment as the groom sees his bride walking down the aisle — ‘fraid not!  Both Katie and Patrick shed tears as she approached!

We explored the aquarium for a bit to get some colorful couples’ shots (been looking forward to this for a long time!) and then the bride and groom were whisked down to their gorgeous reception, which was also situated right on the water.  Great toasts, great party — really great party — it was an awesome day start to finish!

 

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Katie & Patrick, we had such an amazing time on your wedding day!  Thank you for allowing us to document it, and we hope you had a blast in Antigua!

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Matthew & Kathleen have been together since they were in high school, which made this wedding a long-time-coming.  They also have a fantastic group of friends and family who obviously love these two to death, so it was a long-time-coming to a really-great-celebration!  We met Kathleen & Matt after shooting Matt’s sister’s wedding last year, so there were a lot of familiar faces on this gorgeous day at Church Landing in Meredith, New Hampshire.  Fabulous, touching speeches at reception time and a party-to-be-remembered courtesy Brandon Lloyd at Get Down Tonight made this an awesome wedding.

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Matt & Kathleen, thank you so much for asking us to photograph your wedding!  We had an amazing time & can’t wait to share the rest of the pictures with you!

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Patrick, an air-traffic controller, and Katie, a schoolteacher, maintained a long-distance relationship for a long while before Patrick proposed — of all places, at Cinderella’s castle at Disney World.  (Nice!)  These two have a fantastic energy together and were super-fun as we wandered around the gorgeous grounds at Shaker Village in Canterbury, NH — one of my favorite spots for couples’ photos.  Can’t wait for their 2014 wedding at the New England Aquarium in Boston, MA!

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How about instead of having your wedding at some typical, you know, venue, you decide to completely take over the entire grounds of this gorgeous, sprawling summer camp on a lake, invite everyone you know and love to sleep in cabins and bunks for the weekend, play games and volleyball and swim and bask in the sun and then everyone does their hair and gets into their suits and dresses and gathers around the waters’ edge while you two get married in this beautifully intimate ceremony and then mingle and lounge around and laugh and drink cold drinks under these giant pines until this incredibly hard-driving soul-funk-jazz-rock-you-to-your-core band from Boston starts playing in a tent and no one, I mean no one, can stop dancing?  How about that?

I wish I could say that’s exactly what happened at Rachel & David’s wedding, but it was that & even better.  This brilliant, charming couple decided to have their wedding at a summer camp for girls on beautiful Lake Winnipesaukee, where Rachel was a staff-hand for years (her dad was actually the doctor-on-premises) — a very, very special place for Rachel & her family.

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David got ready at the campground (being around all those bunks & graffitied rafters brought back terrific childhood memories for me):

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A perfect first look by the waterside:

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An intimate Jewish (pre)ceremony with closest family:

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And then a more public declaration with all guests at hand.  The first time I’ve ever heard Philip Glass’s fifth string quartet (a personal favorite) chosen for the processional!

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After a leisurely and memorable cocktail hour, we made our way to the tent, where a series of heartfelt speeches from Rachel & David’s parents, brothers, and sisters made it clear to all that two families (who incidentally have known each other for a long time) have truly become one family:

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THE. BEST. HORA. EVER:

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And then, the dancing continued.  Nephrok! and his absolutely amazing cohorts, of the Nephrok! Allstars, charged the night with relentless soul-funk music which lit everyone’s groove on fire:

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Rachel and David: we feel so happy to have been your photographers, so happy.  We had such an incredible time, start to finish!  Thank you!

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Brian & Jenn met when they both worked at GE.  Their jobs had them flying all over the country to various cities, conferences, training classes, and they kept bumping into each other … and not forgetting it.  After months of anticipation (and some considerable coordination) their first date took place in Texas.  They knew instantly, that day, that something amazing was happening between them — but they didn’t know, as they walked through the city, ate in a fantastic restaurant, went to a show together — they didn’t know that in the not-very-distant-future Brian would be RE-CREATING the VERY SAME DATE (to Jenn’s utter surprise).  That’s right: two days before Christmas, he whisked Jenn off at three in the morning (telling her nothing of where they were going) to fly her to Texas … to relive every moment of their first date together again… only this time, the evening capped off with a gorgeous diamond ring and a heartfelt proposal.

That’s the kind of guy Brian is.  When I asked Jenn what she loves about Brian, she said, “He’s so thoughtful.  He takes care of me… he’s just so considerate of me.”

Clearly.  So what does Brian love about Jenn?  “Her smile, her laugh.”   Indeed, Jenn is one of the smilingest people we’ve ever met.  You ever notice that laughs are contagious?  That great energy spreads?  This is what makes for a great wedding…

Getting ready took place at the beautiful Salem Waterfront Hotel in Salem, Massachusetts; only a two-second trolley ride across the street for the heartfelt ceremony at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church; followed by another trolley ride to Salem’s gorgeous waterfront; then, a trolley ride into Salem’s charming cobblestone downtown area; and finally another quick skip & hop to our destination, stunning Colonial Hall at Rockefellas.

When I met with Brian & Jenn months ago, they warned me: “Be ready for our dance.”  Jenn’s a dancer, and so is Brian — or, at least, he is one now.  Holy cow, how cute!  Perfectly choreographed to 1940’s big band, the room lit up and every guest’s jaw dropped…

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Brian & Jenn, we are so thrilled to have been a part of your amazing day.  We hope your honeymoon in Hawaii was everything you imagined it would be!  :)

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