I am a wedding and portrait photographer who keeps things light, fun, and full of energy. I’m based out of Springfield, Illinois however I love traveling all over the midwest and beyond.
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Meeting a couple at a bridal show can be super overwhelming for them since they are seeing so many different vendors, ideas, and are given various options to make their wedding day amazing. However, when I met Kristin and Steve at a Bloomington, Illinois bridal show last year I already felt as if I had a wonderful connection with them. Kristin is like me….A planner! She was very into the details of her wedding to Steve that was booked for the Sunday of Labor Day weekend at Metamora Fields Golf Club in northern Illinois. The other piece of Kristin and Steve that I learned within the first few minutes of meeting them at the bridal expo was family was definitely first! Not only did they come to the show, but along with them was Kristin’s mom, Lisa, as well as her aunt and uncle who were in town. And boy did their love of family as well as friends show on their big day! The amount of admiration, compassion, and simple joy for these two was a gift to witness.
Throughout the perfect day, we bounced all around the East Peoria area, starting at Kristin’s family home where she got her hair and makeup done along with her bridesmaids and both her mom and Steve’s mom, Sheri. When Kristin’s dress came out of the bag for me to photograph I had to stand back and just gaze upon it for a moment. It.Was.Stunning! She said that it was totally not her as she leans more towards soccer shorts, a t-shirt, and some running shoes. But, she fell in love with the sparkle and high neckline and was sold! Yet, to keep a little of that athletic side of her in the big day she sported a pair of jeweled Kate Spade KEDS! They were adorable! Then we headed to Morton for the ceremony at Bethel Lutheran Church. The two had planned a first look and I found a pretty spot outside of the church under a few trees. Steve was looking very handsome in his black suit and gold tie. The moment of Steve seeing his bride for the first time was very special. I don’t think his smile could have grown any bigger! They were then joined by their wonderful bridal party with the girls in short, black lace dresses also with high necklines and the guys in their classic black suits with patterned black and gold matching ties.
Their ceremony was beautiful filled with uplifting music, guests who adored the couple, a faith to help guide the newlyweds in the right direction in their marriage. I couldn’t help but notice how much the couple was beaming during their nuptials! Not only was Kristin’s spectacular dress shimmering in the light, but their smiles could be seen for days! Shortly after the ceremony we took a 15 minute drive out to Washington, IL to a quaint little lake that had many tall grasses and a cute dock, where the overcast sun gave the perfect amount of lighting for the bridal party photos. The bridal party was energetic and lively and we all shared many laughs. The fall bouquets the girls carried along with the guys boutonnieres were absolutely AMAZING! The assorted colors and textures used were extremely beautiful and made the photos pop against all the black! We made one more stop at a cute town square for some photos by a stone gazebo, then headed over to the reception site at Metamora Fields, where Kristin and Steve allowed me a few more minutes with just the two of them on the grounds where the golden light was flawless! The venue was phenomenal with an upstairs banquet room with windows overlooking the golf course, which donned a pond complete with a small waterfall. And guess what? The sunset fell right behind all this beauty! I’m sure by this time Kristin and Steve were ready to kick off their reception with their dancing shoes ready to go, but again they were awesome and totally into the sunset photos! Now I learned at Kristin and Steve’s engagement session, which you can find HERE, as a wrestler and athlete, Steve doesn’t back down from a challenge! So when I would ask him to dip Kristin for a kiss every so lightly he would attempt to break a world record for the lowest dip ever performed! Which was kind of hilarious! However, he came close to dropping Kristin on several occasions! And that is my rule #1 for all of my weddings and sessions….No falling (or in Steve’s case…No Dropping!) On wedding day, I reminded Steve he didn’t have to take Kristin all the way to the ground when he dipped her! He said they had been practicing their dip after the engagement session leading up to the big day. When the time came for the closing dip at sunset….Steve nailed it!
The party continued long into the night once the sun went down and the dance floor was packed with some pretty awesome dancers that were really fun to photograph! And when the night ended, the couple was met by family and friends outside with sparklers and a fancy silver mustang for their getaway as husband and wife! The little family moments, such as Kristin with her mom, their first dance that broke out into a compilation of fun notable dance songs, and of course the glances the couple would give one another during the day were wonderful to be a part of. From beginning to end, Kristin and Steve’s journey from our first meeting to their sparkler exit was a complete delight! I couldn’t be more excited for Mr. and Mrs. Ross! Congrats and I wish you nothing but blessings in your long, enduring marriage!
Special Thank You to all of the wedding vendors!
Reception Venue: Metamora Fields
Ceremony Venue: Bethel Lutheran Church in Morton, IL
Videographer: Video Dreams Productions
Florist: Floral Designs, Ltd.
Cake Artist: Designer Cake shop
DJ: Sapphire Entertainment
Makeup Artist: Skin By Tori
Hair Artist: Amanda (Friend of Bride)
Bridesmaid Dresses: DEJURE Formalwear and Bridal Palace
Tuxes: Jos. A. Banks
Wedding Designer: Heaven on Earth Event Design Studio