Outdoor Autumn Wedding

If you’re planning an outdoor autumn wedding, there are three things you’ll need: rust-colored mums, twinkle lights, pumpkins, and a backup plan in case of rain. 😛 Thankfully, Megan didn’t need to stay indoors but she definitely brought the perfect autumn wedding decor when she had her flower girls sprinkle autumn leaves and decorated with pumpkins and mums.

When I met with Megan and Joel for their engagement photos  this spring (during a freeing cold sunrise, nonetheless!) I quickly knew, though, that their wedding would be so much more than the sum of all their details and decor; theirs was a wedding dedicated to the joy of family, delight in friends, precious celebration of each other, and a deeply beautiful excitement at starting the marriage that they’ve prepared for during the course of their relationship.

If I left their engagement photo relishing the beauty of their God-centered relationship, I drove away from their wedding even more (didn’t think it was possible!) in awe of all that God has been doing in their lives leading them to this new season of life together. I can onlly trust that these photos properly convey the depth of their joy in one another, the immense love that they exihibit, and their kindness not only towards one another but to their guests.

(Spoiler: Most weddings consider the guests, I’m pretty sure this one catered to the guests. That’s just the kind of pair they are.)



Without giving away the tenderly sentimental story of this vanity and mirror (it feels too sacred to unveil to the interwebs) I will say that it’s wrought with meaning and a powerful evidence of God-stories and deep friendship. Getting ready at this seat was just one example of a moment Megan cherished.

And CHECK OUT ALL THOSE BUTTONS! Such a stunning dress (as you’ll see more of later) but those buttons really did take the cake (and more than a wee bit of patience. :-P)

Megan and Joel chose not to see one another before their wedding ceremony, but they did take a moment to pray together with their pastor a few moments before the ceremony began. Such a great way to start the wedding day together without spoiling the aisle surprise!

This church is a very special church to me and not just because its the same church my parents were married in 37 years ago. 😉


Megan and Joel had written personalized vows to one another and kept them a secret from each other until the ceremony  Imagine the perfect symmetry, then, when they both incorporated
“always be your dance partner’ into the prose. With that context, I gave them a few minutes to dance together toward the end of the portrait ceremony time and this is what happened. Such a beautiful, tender, spontaneous, fantastic proof of togetherness.

My favorite moment of this portrait session might have been the pocket of glorious light we uncovered in the woods (scroll for proof!) except for this series of moments that just took my breath away with its spontaneity, tenderness, and love.


After a BBQ dinner (some of the most delicious barbeque I have ever tasted!), the real fun started outside: dancing, smores, and glow sticks


If you’re going to have an outdoor autumn wedding, you definitely need a firepit with smores. SUCH a delicious treat AND fun activity! (Though, Megan, you get mad props for holding melting chocolate in your hand while wearing white!)

My job as a wedding photographer is to see someone’s vision for their wedding day and turn it into documented reality. However, it’s not very often that I have to literally turn a dream into a photograph. Yes, that’s right: this next series of photos is the highest pressure set of images that I have EVER had to take. Megan actually dreamed this photo (like, it actually came to her in a dream while she was sleeping) just before Joel proposed and here we were living it out!   The forest walkway, the hand-in-hand wedding portrait, the lantern guiding their path, the twilight haze.

Reality isn’t often as wonderful as the dream, but this moment was pretty perfect reality.


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