About a week ago I found out some pretty awesome news, and now that it’s in print, I can’t wait to share it with you.
The impeccable wedding planning guide that is Martha Stewart Weddings named me as one of their 69 Top Wedding Photographers!
Seriously. That really happened. Go ahead and pinch yourself, because I’ve been doing that for days.
I’m not sure I fully believed it until I picked up a copy of the magazine itself and turned to page 273 to see a lovely two page spread full of quotes and info direct from the selected photographers. Right in the middle it lists m three studio under ‘Wisconsin’ along with a little quote about my style. The photographers I’m surrounded by on this list are my mentors, my photographic idols, and the fact that I’m listed among them is the biggest honor of all. It is such an incredible list!
The entire list is full of great advice and info straight from the photographers themselves. MSW has always been a great resource, and this list is no exception!
There is a lot that goes into wedding photography than just beautiful pictures. While I’m humbled and oh-so-very-honored to be selected, I want to be sure some of the love gets spread around to the behind-the-scenes people that make m three studio so awesome. Most notably Hubby, my steadfast assistant Ashley, my truly talented associate Melissa, and of course the little tyke you see above, who inspires us everyday.
(You can pick up the Spring 2014 issue of Martha Stewart Weddings on newsstands now, or download a digital subscription here.)
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BIG THANKS to everyone who voted in the Best of 2013 contest. We had a great turnout, and it was a blast to see the lead change hands so many times and the couples battle it out for first place.
It’s still winter. Just in case any of you were wondering – though it seems no matter where you live in the U.S. right now, it is colder than usual. For us Wisconsinites, we got a fresh layer of 4 inches this morning, and are expecting two more tonight.
I’ve always found it funny how much cheeseheads gripe about winter. You live in Wisconsin – it is going to be cold for at least 4 months. So, I don’t see the point in complaining until at least late March. This year, everyone seems crankier than usual.
The great majority of my photographer friends are currently in Vegas for the annual WPPI conference. It’s killing me not being there with them for the fun, new toys and of course the parties. It was a necessary sacrifice this year to not go, but seeing their tweets and instagrams is biting a bit. Miss you all!
Speaking of Instagram…..I finally got an Instagram account for m three studio! If you want a true behind the scenes view of all that is weddings, photography, traveling, eating organic, and most everything else I am, follow me here!
That Instagram account is also the first place you can see a tiny glimpse of the brand new addition to the m three team. My long-time assistant Ashley and her husband Eric gave birth yesterday. I was blessed enough to be there to capture it all, and I can testify how deeply jealous I am of the utterly perfect birth experience they had, and the incredibly beautiful little man they welcomed. I know she is my assistant, because she gave me gorgeous natural light for the whole experience – as only a good photo assistant would! CONGRATULATIONS!
One of the big downs about this winter is how cold it has been. Too cold to play outside. So two weeks ago, when it was 40 degrees for one day, Hubby and I bundled Baby Girl up and got her outside for some snow time, and for some pictures. I, of course, haven’t edited them all yet, but here’s one to bring a little toddler sunshine to your day:
The Oscars were pretty fantastic. Beautiful gowns, super funny host, great social media tie-ins, touching speeches and wonderful wins! Don’t shoot me, but I totally don’t get the whole “Let it Go” obsession. It’s a nice song to be sure, but why is it SO popular? Maybe I need to see the movie. And, Idina Menzel was totally amazing before her role in Frozen, but I guess you’d have to be a Wicked fan to know that.
I’ve been on an organic/local food/no chemicals sort of mission for a couple of years. But I recently stepped up our game after discovering the site Food Babe (which is amazing!). The amount of processing, chemicals, metals and other harmful ‘whatever’ in the food we eat every day is staggering and frightening. There just isn’t any end to the depth of this. Say you don’t want to eat GMOs. Well, it’s not enough to stop with your cereal (for example), you also have to think about your butter (also for example). Because likely it is made from milk made by a cow who has been fed grain full of GMOs. So you are getting it that way. Ugh. Anyway, I found a great spreadable butter recipe that made me feel a whole lot better about this change. Now onto the next thing in the fridge – our bread.
One of my former brides announced she is battling Hodgkins Lymphoma. She made this announcement with a pink mohawk (just before buzzing her hair off). This is the typical pluck and quirkiness I have come to expect from Kara. She has a great attitude, and has decided to focus her attention and energy towards doing good during her treatment, instead of fixating on that big “C” word. If you have a few extra bills and would like to help her out, donate to her 5k team for Saved by Whisker, and keep her motivated during treatment!
Big announcement coming on the blog this week! If you follow me on Facebook, you likely have a good idea what it is!
Have a great week!
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Voting is over, and I have the results!
It has been a blast watching all of my fabulous couples revisit their weddings with their friends via social media, and bring attention to their awesome soirees!
We were flooded with votes, and the lead changed hands between the top four or five couples several times over the last few days. But, we do have a winner!
Taking the title, with just a fifty vote margin……
Right behind them was the charming farm wedding of Melissa & Eric, in second place!
And not to be left out, Angela & Ricky’s Delafield Hotel wedding had an impressive showing just 9 votes behind, putting them in third!
The rest of the field was not far behind. Racheal & Jesse’s Door County Orchard wedding was just a handful of votes out of the top three, and Maggie & Wes were right behind them.
As promised, we are not leaving out all of the voters from the winning fun! If you shared the original blog post or Facebook post about the contest, or pinned an image from that blog post (or the wedding posts) to Pinterest, we entered you in a random drawing for a $25 Target gift card.
And the winner is…….Heather Day!
(whom I believe is a friend of Racheal & Jesse)
Thanks so much to everyone who voted, and of course to our amazing couples!
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Before we get too far into this new year, we need to take a step back and revel in all the couples that began their marriages with m three studio in 2013. Yes, that’s right….it’s time for the BEST OF 2013 Contest!
When I was selecting the images for this blog post, it was the moments that sprang to mind immediately, not the pretty portraits or the careful details. That is only fitting. As much as the gorgeous dress, the beautiful flowers, the unique decor or the ah-mazing location may get my creative juices flowing on any given Saturday, it’s the stories – the moments in-between the love – that drive me. It’s your story that keeps me running for more than 8 hours in 3 inch heels with 30 pounds of camera equipment on my shoulder – to get that one shot that shows just how you feel, just who you are.
So, I’m going to give you a highlighted moment from each of last year’s weddings – the ones that encapsulate the day for me, the storyteller. You can click on their location name to see the whole wedding in it’s entirety and find your own favorite images.
And of course….scroll down to the bottom for the rules, the prizes, and to VOTE!
Maureen & Brendan
Milwaukee Athletic Club Wedding
I’m confident that the Milwaukee Athletic Club has never been rocked so hard. These two truly know how to throw a party. This is my last shot of the night – the Mr. & Mrs. singing along, dancing and so very in the moment. I hated to leave.
Alexis & Kevin
Patrick Haley Mansion Wedding
Alexis’ face says it all – this was a day of multiple moments that crumpled faces into over-boiling emotion. You have to click thru to see Kevin’s tearful reaction to her entrance, and another favorite moment – the pre-ceremony prayer, powerfully delivered by the bridesmaids.
Brenna & Chase
Grain Exchange Wedding
These two live life fully. They work hard, love hard, and certainly party hard. When the UW Marching Band made a surprise appearance at their reception – the place erupted. No one loved and reveled in the moment more than the bride and groom. You could taste the joy and alma-matter loyalty.
Rachael & Jesse
Door County Wedding
These two never miss an opportunity to surprise. They are like a swirling vortex of creativity, passion, style, dedication and confidence. When that vortex pauses (and trust me, it merely pauses), the calm is nothing but serendipity. When Rachael whipped out a flask in the middle of portrait time – getting a head start on the reception – I shouldn’t have been surprised. Ah, but I always am with Rachael & Jesse.
Natalie & Brandon
Overture Center Wedding
This isn’t a truly authentic moment – I invited Natalie & Brandon to dance in the atrium of the Overture Center. But I knew the classic structure of this image would be a great metaphor for the careful and meticulous nature they both posses, and the swirling action would speak to the whirlwind that was a three-month engagement.
Alicia & T.J.
Whistling Straits Wedding
I always tell clients that kids and pets steal the show. There was no exception to that rule for Alicia & T.J.’s adorable little girls. I’ll never forget this moment, with Mary running full speed down the aisle towards a delighted T.J. It’s just the sort of spontaneous joy that illustrates parenthood so well.
Sarah & Adam
Lake Park Bistro Wedding
One of my favorite parts of Lake Park Bistro is the historical photographs hanging in the entryway. I had stolen Sarah & Adam away for a few pictures and then let them walk ahead of me to rejoin their guests for cocktails. As they approached, a murmur went thru the crowd, and then applause. I snapped this quickly, and then realized it’s symmetry later to a shot in that entry, from 100 years ago.
Morgan & Rich
Seven Seas Wedding
Kids were a BIG factor at Morgan & Rich’s wedding. You can tell what an awesome aunt in uncle they are, because they armed their army of tiny guests with not just bubbles – bubble guns!
Kristina & Dimitri
Grain Exchange Wedding
Everything about this greek wedding was big. But the very biggest part was the family depth. When the greek-by-brand-new-marriage Kristina took the lead for the traditional dance, and Dimitri’s whole family followed right behind without a bat of the eye – I saw what she saw in them, how much they loved her, and how much she loved them.
Angela & Ricky
Delafield Hotel Wedding
It was this stolen moment in the wine cellar, just before joining the crush of their guests, that seemed the most true to Angela & Ricky’s romance.
Meghan & Matt
Washington Island Wedding
Matt fought hard to get Meghan’s attention when they first met. And judging by what I’ve come to know of her family, he fought hard to become one of them too. This reaction to Meghan’s Dad’s speech – where he was getting royally roasted as only a family member would – says it all.
Lindsey & Sean
Pewaukee Yacht Club Wedding
It’s often the “just before” moments that get me. Lindsey & Sean wanted a causal, intimate wedding. That, they got with the immediate family that filled Marquette’s Joan of Arc chapel earlier that day. Here, they have just gotten off their vintage boat piloted over from her parent’s house to their reception – a giant tent filled with many more guests who hadn’t seen them yet that day, and at this exact snap – didn’t realize they had arrived. This right here is the last milli-second before it all erupts in celebration.
Adriana & Ashish
Villa Terrace Wedding
Theirs was an immensely colorful day, in so many ways. I could point to a hundred gorgeous, lush, amazing moments from their Indian ceremony that showcased that. But it was the speeches, this one tearfully given by a grateful father that pulled at my heart-strings and got my viewfinder misty.
Maggie & Wes
Delafield Fish Hatchery Wedding
Wes’ Mom carried a little pennant during this wedding ceremony that simply and joyfully read “YAY!”. It is that which would be the hashtag for this moment. I love the simplicity of it, the color and the excitement.
Raechael & Matt
Lake Park Bistro Wedding
This day was fraught with emotion – with a rained out ceremony that had to be hastily relocated it was inevitable. But this moment I will never forget. Raechael’s Dad was lovingly reassuring as they waited to walk in, and I think when he went to hand her off, it all just hit her at once. To me, his face is full of pride and love and saying “It’s okay, you are where you belong”, and for her, it seems to be a ‘I still need my Daddy sometimes’ moment. I know just how she feels.
Carey & R.J.
“I think if you can treat your spouse as well as you would a stranger, it will serve you well in your marriage” Carey’s Dad said something to that effect in his toast, and I’ll never forget it. Such wise words, and something I already see these two do every time I am with them.
Laura & John
Milwaukee Art Museum Wedding
I didn’t get to shoot this wedding (it was the fabulous Melissa behind the lens), so I don’t know what is actually being said here. But I do know that anytime you can get Laura fully embarrassed and John caught up in his full-face laugh, you are in good company.
Melissa & Eric
This was a personal wedding for me (click to their blog post to hear about that) and so this was no ordinary Bride being escorted down the aisle. That’s a man I’ve known all my life next to her, and a woman who was once a toddler at my knees in the white dress. So this is personal moment choice. But it shows the handmade entrance doors (made by that Dad), her Mom’s spectacular gardening skills, and all their nearest and dearest waiting, along with Eric, on the family farm. This was a landmark moment.
Jill & Jason
Whistling Straits Wedding
This is the one moment I will always remember about Jill & Jason’s day. It’s an unlikely one if you consider all the other funny and surprising moments that handful of hours were filled with. But it’s Jason’s face that says it all and is seared into my memory. It’s connection – illustrated. Jill had just shown him the dog tags in her pocket – of their beloved and late Queenie.
Jamie & David
Genesee Theater Wedding
This day was a tornado of activity. Families, kids, decorations, schedules, details – it all was in Jamie & David’s hands. But this moment, as they were worried about getting to their cocktails – this was the eye of the storm. A pause, just for a second, to take in the beauty in front of, an all around them.
Megan & Scott
It’s been described a thousand times before – that moment when a couple shuts out the world, and it’s just the two of them on the dance floor. It’s cliche I guess. The thing about supposed cliche moments though is that they are nakedly true. Just like this one.
Jessica & Vinn
I often ask a couple to just trust me – that I’ll ask them to do silly things, but I promise it will look amazing. This was one of those moments. Thankfully, Jess and Vinn did trust me, and they were having a grand time celebrating and reveling in the late fall sun. The swirl, the light, the dapper groom, the laughter. I can hear the laughter, even now.
Allie & Paul
Iron Horse Hotel Wedding
‘Can you fathom our unbelievable luck to be here – together – finally?’ That’s what I think Paul said to Allie right before this moment.
Maddy & Kyle
Wisconsin Club Wedding
This wedding day was all about the friends (who were also family many of them). So this shot of the group together, walking away to leave for the ceremony – it shows everything that mattered to Maddy & Kyle that day.
So, who stood out to you?
The Fine Print:
-Voting runs from today (February 21) thru Friday, February 28th at Noon.
-Voters are recognized by IP address, and you can vote once a day, per IP address.
PRIZES, PRIZES, PRIZES:
We are awarding the top three vote getters (and a little extra!) because the race is always so close.
A 24×36 Gallery Wrap Canvas
A 16×20 Gallery Wrap Canvas
A 12×18 Gallery Wrap Canvas
Share this post on Facebook, or Pin an image from this or any of the weddings featured on Pinterest, and you will be entered in a random drawing for a $25 Target gift card. Because, who doesn’t love a little Tar-jay?
(just use the handy “share” button at the bottom of the post, or the “pin it” buttons that show up whenever you roll over an image you like)
Thanks so much for voting! And heartfelt THANK YOU to all 25 of these couples who trusted me with their stories last year. It was such a humbling and memorable experience to walk in step with each of you!