Hollie and John are getting married on Saturday, and I can hardly wait for their big day to get here.
It rained on us when they came to town for their engagement session, so we caught a few quick images at the park with umbrella and boots, but the skies really opened up, so we skedaddled back into the studio to finish up.
They say that rain on your wedding day is good luck, so we’ll go ahead and claim that luck from the engagement shoot as even more good luck to come.
This wedding is very super special to me — and NOT just because Hollie is a stunning redhead like yours truly. It’s special because Hollie was my very first senior client EVER!
I had met Hollie and her mom through the Taylor High School Cross Country team when she was a senior and my son was running as a Freshman. I attended every cross country meet that year with my camera and photographed the runners as if there was no tomorrow. That was when all that stood behind my photography business was a name, a sales tax number, and a dream in my heart — I had a WHOLE LOT to learn about photography and about the business side of the art.
Cross Country meets take a long time, and you wander around with the rest of your team parents a LOT … so we got to be friends. Then, in the springtime, Hollie’s mom, Sarah, actually hired me — did you hear that???? HIRED ME!!! — for money — to take senior portraits for Hollie. I don’t think I netted $40 on that job, but I DID get paid! It might as well have been a $4000 session as excited as I was. To be honest, though, I am very disappointed in those senior portraits when I look back at them today because –well, I was a beginner. Like so many people, I had a great eye and a lot of passion, but I had barely started honing my skills. Still, I will ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS be grateful though, that Hollie and Sarah put enough faith and support behind my dream to start my baby steps.
Now HERE’s a flashback!
Hollie and the other senior girls on the team started a tradition that lasted for several years. They would run in the last “extras” race but would drop out somewhere along the course to get muddy before running in together. OHhhhhhh how I loved their spirit!
Hollie still plays in the mud, but in a serious way — now she wears coveralls and a hard hat as an oilfield engineer with Schlumberger. I STILL love her spirit and sense of humor — oh and she snagged herself one of the sweetest guys EVER while she was studying in Kansas.
They’ll both definitely be rocking a more formal look on Saturday, but I’m sure there will be plenty of spirited antics with these two — and I’ll be there to capture the whole event.
There’s this gorgeous young woman who officially joined our family nearly a year and a half ago — and there’s also this amazingly scrumptious dress that’s been hanging in our front hall closet ever since the day she and my first son returned from their honeymoon.
I’ve been waiting and waiting for her to get back into the dress and go play with me and my camera. The old adage about the shoemakers children having no shoes definitely carries over to photographers as well. Our own kids are the last ones to get booked on our portrait schedules. It finally fell together not too long ago when we had a trip planned with just a little extra time to kill.
Lisa earned her degree in nutrition from The University of Houston, and she is very good at creating oh-s0-yummy and still super-healthy goodies in her own little kitchen. That’s why Sweetpea’s Bakery provided a perfect first stop for us. Unfortunately, there was no cupcake sampling for us that day because the shop was going out of business. Everything was still adorably decorated, though, and we had private access. Definitely a lucky coup for us.
It’s great to have inside connections, and I’m thrilled that we got to shoot here before this place went away. BUT… an Italian Cream Cupcake sure would have tasted good about now. RATZ!
Oh how I love working in back alleys…. small towns, urban centers, doesn’t matter… give me some good grunge, and maybe a little street art… HEAVEN!
Moving garbage cans out of the way gets a little bit nasty, but I know to carry wipes and hand sanitizer.
Probably the highlight of our session for me was spending a little time at “The Station.”
We drove over to an old empty Mobile Filling Station that my grandfather owned and operated until the mid 1970’s when he retired. It wasn’t just an ordinary filling station either. This station had a bar that served up ice cold longneck bottles of beer, and for the kids, every flavor of sodie pop you can name… and ice cream sandwiches. Mmmmmm!
I think that about a half dozen local retirees used to practically rotate shifts, sitting on the bar stools, drinking and smoking at the station. I never knew their names, but can still see their faces in my mind’s eye. A liquor store was attached, but with a separate entrance on one side of the building. On the other side, a corrugated tin drive- in awning, or car-shade as we called it, allowed people to sit in the shade in their cars, drinking cokes or beer and eating snacks as long as they pleased. When the customers wanted to place an order or were done and ready to leave they could honk the horn and Pawpaw or one of his employees would come out side, take orders, and deliver treats on a window-mount tray.
I ran around this building with my brothers and cousins, barefooted and out of control for years…
My my how times have changed. The gas pumps are gone. I do NOT get out of the car without shoes at a filling station or anywhere!
The doors are locked, but the station building still stands, just a little more worn from the years that have passed.
I am so glad that I got to share this little bit of family history with our newest family member.
Well, here’s to an exciting first at SPCcreative Photography.
Hannah is my very first Senior Portrait client to also become one of “MY” brides, and I can hardly WAIT to watch the next chapters of her sweet life unfold.
I still remember her senior session. She brought her ultra-handsome and oh-so lovable new boyfriend, Jake, along for part of the shoot, and we included him in a few of our images. While I could tell they had something very special between them, logic tried hard to convince me that I was just being a sucker for young love.
Who would have thought that Jake really was going to be THE ONE? I guess they both knew a good thing from the get-go.
Hannah and Jake were married in the chapel at The Brookwood Community where, as it turns out, I worked as a development officer for the first three years that we lived in Houston. Brookwood is a beautiful campus with a fascinating mission. It’s located just outside of Brookshire, Texas.
RATZ my link didn’t seem to work, check out www.brookwoodcommunity.org for more info.
I love it when a bride has a special idea that she wants incorporate into her session, and Hannah wanted to create a special gift for her father. Ahhhh the sentiment!
You can’t tell here, but we all shared a few tears while she wrote this note on a slate.
Best wishes Hannah and Jake — for a LONG and HAPPY life together.
Aubrey and Michael. What can I say? I ABSOLUTELY adore this couple.
It’s not just the bride and groom who made this wedding such a joy to photograph, but their parents and their bridesmaids and groomsmen as well.
Talk about a kind and helpful and . . . well … just downright genuine and fun-loving group! If I could photograph an event for people this delightful every single weekend, I would do it in a heartbeat.
A dream in her ruched and pleated ivory dress, Aubrey made an absolutely stunning bride.
Then, when the groomsmen came outside with their amazing fedoras, I knew we’d be in for a delightful evening. And you know what? I was right.
Days around our house have been busy and exciting lately. You see, we’re especially looking forward to a very important wedding in January. At this wedding, I will not be allowed to have a camera because the groom is my first-born son. (Don’t tell anyone, but I’m seriously looking for a pretty evening bag that will accommodate our Canon C-9 Point and Shoot, just in case I start going into photography withdrawal tremors)
I DID, however, get to spend a little very special time earlier this fall with Ian and his lovely fiance’, Lisa, to create some memorable engagement images and a Save the Date card. Here’s what we came up with!
This is the front of our 5x7 Save the Date Card
And this is the inside spread.
And this is the back of our little card.
So as you can tell, I’m getting a beautiful new Daughter-in Love — and of course Grand-dog Jäger adds laughter, tail wags and slobber to the scene.
In posting these photos, I’m a little gushy and proud today. I can’t help but share our music video as well as some of my favorite picks from our outing.
Naturally, I’m a bit biased, but I think you’ll agree that we’ve got one heck of an adorable and so-in-love couple.
Ian and Lisa . . . I love you both BUNCHES and thank you for allowing your dopey mom to follow you around one afternoon with her camera.
For more engagement fun, here’s a video I created with all of the proofs from our session. Pour yourself a cup of coffee, sit back, and enjoy young love and One Big Dog!