Some times things just come full circle….
I met her Dad 9 years ago in a little restaurant on the Vegas strip. It was a photographer conference and we were all part of what was called “The B School” meeting up after hours as sort of a meet and greet! Photographers from all over the world come to this thing. Imagine, little east coast girl, only a few years into the business, so naive about the industry sitting there among all of these well established and award accredited photographers. To be honest, I was WAY out of my league but I had worked SO HARD to be there. It was what I had literally dreamed of at the time. Going to this “after hours” was a little intimidating but they said the guac was good so they basically had me convinced! haha!
I was still working a full time job PLUS a part time job AND doing photography on the side. I had dreamed of going full time with my business and I thought this conference was a step in the right direction for me…I was SO SO right! It wasn’t about what I learned there (sure that helped) but it was more about the people I met! The relationships I have built over the years with people I have met while attending these conferences were/are worth FAR MORE than any class I could have taken.
Greg and I were munching on some of the most amazing guacamole when Aric and another guy came over and sat down. We started small talking and eventually both of us were ragging on each other because we were from different coasts and said things differently. I made fun of him for his accent and he made fun of me for mine….and he was so intrigued about the Pittsburgh cookie table. Greg and I became good friends with A-Ric and we’d often run business ideas, photography tips and website critiques past each other. He’d tell me I was crazy for not going full time with my business-just a few years after attending that conference, I put in my two week notice and went full time!
Fast forward all these years-9 to be exact and I’m flying out to the Pacific North West to photograph his daughters wedding. Being asked by another photographer to photograph a big event is …..well a little intimating. SUPER flattering, but intimidating and a total full circle moment! Small town PA Photographer travels to Washington to photograph a photographer’s daughters wedding……GULP.
Dannielle and Dylan were absolutely amazing and I can not say enough how wonderful all of their family were! I felt like I was at home with my east coast friends and my belly hurts from laughing and eating too many donuts. Tee he he!
And in true Jen McKen fashion, I’m sharing WAY too many photos on the blog! My bad!
A few details…
Opening gifts is always so emotional-it’s why it’s my favorite! <3
Popping champagne! I love their reactions in the background! haha!
The bride and the bridesmaid choreographed an entire dance for the reception…music was blaring and they were practicing their dance moves in the hotel room!
When the Mom’s walk out looking like HOT MAMAS! RAWR!
I love these two! You have no idea how amazing they are!!! <3
Wedding Tip: pick fun people to be in your wedding party! haha!
It’s time to become a bride!
I love this shot!
HOT DAMN Dannielle!!!
I love this image because you can see the tear running town her cheek! GAHH!! <3
I LOVE LOVE LOVE this!! Dannielle’s aunte made her an authentic head lei and it was absolutely STUNNING!!! The amount of hours and love that went into making this makes me so happy! I love that she got to incorporate her heritage into the big day!!
This was all hand made! She had stayed up almost 24 hours just to make it!
A little spritz of the perfume the groom got her!
Funny story: the night we arrived at the hotel…and hours after we got our things upstairs, the elevator broke down. People were stuck, the fire department was called..the whole nine yards. Stupid me, picked the 6th floor. The girl actually gave us a choice of floors and we picked the top one because we joked that it would be like the penthouse! Well, I kicked myself in the butt the next couple of days when I had to walk with all of my equipment up 6 flights of steps. It doesn’t sound like a lot but when you have bags that weight close to 100lbs with all of your lenses, it’s not such a good time! HAHAHA!
….and we’re off! I love the guy changing the sign in the back. Someday we’re gonna say, “remember when people had to change the letters”! haha
First look with Dad!
Stay tuned for part 2 of the wedding in the next several days! Be sure to follow along on Instagram for additional sneak peeks: www.instagram.com/jenmckenphotography