the Sonnet House

There are a few wedding venues in Alabama where we return again and again, always excited about the possibility of the land and the light. . .the Sonnet House is one of those places. We’ve taken some of our favorite pictures we’ll every take there – and Jared, Corey, and Candace are always fantastic about, well, everything.

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Brooke & Clay

The great thing about traveling to Hayleyville is that your mind and body acclimate on the trip – once you pass Jasper, you can feel your shoulders relaxing and an uncontrollable urge to roll the windows down and turn on some loud music. I’m always happy wherever there are fields and open spaces, and the barn reception at Clay’s grandfather’s farm was about as good as it gets as far as I’m concerned!

It is also very fun to hop into a time machine – Brooke and Clay are in an amazingly similar place in life to where we were 12 years ago – just finishing school, getting married at their home church, moving houses, starting medical school (for Brooke, like Ari). It will be an adventure, and we hope their journey is as wonderful for them as it was for us!

Thanks Angela & John from Mainstreet for video-ing the adventure with us, and thanks so much to Brooke and Clay’s families for treating us like family!!

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Dads and their daughters. . .

The brides’ dads almost always look a slight bit lost in the finery and and chaos of a wedding day – I love the sweet glances before walking down the aisle – the look of pride mixed with slight disbelief that this beautiful woman is their little girl – or the determined look away and the pursed lips holding tears at bay. David and I talk often, too, about the comfort, familiarity, and relaxation that we see with the daddy daughter dances in contrast to the newness and excitement of the first dance as husband and wife. The tight grasp of the hand, beaming smiles, and emotion are so palpable and on display in a rare moment of public thanks to a man that has shaped so much of this woman’s life.

Finally, though, they always make me think of my dad – he’s the strong, silent type – always present, always ready to step in with strength and assuredness and a sixth sense about when we need a tight hug, a reassuring word, a corny joke, or just something to be fixed. My sisters and I all joke that we married different versions of my father, seeking out the characteristics that nurtured us and we know bring out our strengths and cradle our weaknesses. The last few pictures are my sisters with my dad – with laughter, passion, and arms wrapped in prayer. A few glimpses, as he showed us daily, that he loves us a “hoho bunch”.

Happy Father’s day to all of our brides fathers and the men who have stepped into their lives either from birth or through twists in life along the way. Hope you enjoyed just a few of our random moments captured in pictures

-ari (and david)

ps – i had a LOT of trouble narrowing this down! i’m so sorry if i missed people. . . i had literally 10s of thousands of pictures to go through!!

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Anna & Hunter

Shooting weddings can be stressful – trying to be several places and taking several different pictures at once, being on guard every second against missing an important moment – it’s always fun, but many days it is a ton of work. Every once in a while there comes a time where everything is easy, from the weather, to the venue, to the families, to the band playing bluegrass the entire time you’re taking pre-wedding pictures, great late-afternoon light, a field full of clover for portraits. . .Anna & Hunter’s wedding was one of those amazingly peaceful days.

Hunter and Anna had their wedding at Swann Lake stables, which is the most beautiful barn you’ll ever see, on a perfect 75 degree afternoon. It was beautiful and intimate, with mostly family, close friends, and their pastor from Hunter Street officiating the ceremony. Act of Congress played the music during the ceremony and reception – they are absolutely fantastic. B&A catered the party, P.E.W.S brought in the pews, Jackie Robinson from RawwBeauty did Anna’s makeup, Lynn Cummings second-shot with me, and PastryArts created the fantastic wedding cake (I can’t imagine how tedious it was to write 1 Corinthians 13 around an entire cake!).

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Wren & Ethan

Wren and Ethan had a stunning wedding at the Mitchell Plantation in Bell Mina, Alabama last weekend. . .Wren had planned out her details impeccably – and walking into the soft peaches and corals of the day was seeing her Pinterest board brought to life. Their ceremony involved many of Wren’s mentor’s and friends and we loved documenting the connection and compassion they had with their guests. (The perfect light, fields with huge trees, and sunset surrounding the plantation were pretty fantastic too 🙂 )

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