Saturday, June 28, 2008

Outdoor weddings just for two are in high demand here in the Smoky Mountains. Horse lovers particularly love our farm, as did Laura and James. They wanted an intimate setting for their wedding ceremony with the horses in the background. I asked my daughter to pour a little sweet feed for them by the fence, so of course they lingered from "I Do," all the way to the first kiss!

With a little more assistance from my daughter I was able to capture a very dynamic image of Laura and James. I'm sure she was in agony holding her pose while we raced our quarter horse, Gambler, all around them for the perfect wedding photograph. Gabbi, my second assitant, lifted the sash of Laura's dress and let it fall at just the right moment.
Karen's wedding finally arrives! This was my third opportunity to photograph Karen, and I had more fun with her wedding photography than the engagement and bridal sessions combined!

I had also photographed her matron of honor, Mandin, a few years ago. Mandin was a gorgeous bride, too, and she has as much spunk today as she did back then. There's never, ever a dull moment around Mandin!

Outdoor weddings can be quite hot, so Karen had a fabulous idea to have The Marble Slab Creamery cater her wedding. Adults and children alike swarmed to their table, and it was a big hit! I highly recommend their catering services. How much better can it get, being in the middle of the Smoky Mountains on a summer day, eating cold ice cream with your family and friends?

Thursday, June 19, 2008

A five generation family portrait is a real rarity. This fact alone would have kept me smiling about it, but there's something even more important about this family. My late father purchased the farm now called Honeysuckle Hills from the great, great grandmother pictured here. Her husband's grandfather received the property from the U. S. government as part of his settlement for giving up his land in what is now known as the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

The Brackins family wanted to have their five generations photographed at Honeysuckle Hills because it was where they grew up, and it was extremely sentimental to them.
They commented how glad they were that we have kept the land as close to its original state as possible. Too often these days we see developers raping the land in the Smoky Mountains, piling cabins as high as possible, and ruining what all our guests come here for in the first place.

Nichole and Scott were the very first couple ever to be married at Honeysuckle Hills in July of 2006. Imagine my elation when she called telling me she's expecting their first child! She scheduled her maternity session and we spent over an hour creating some of the most beautiful maternity images I've ever done.

After each location I would ask Scott to step aside so that I could do a maternity image of Nichole alone. He kidded and made fun saying he felt left out and all alone, so I made sure to photograph him by himself before it was over.

We didnt' have the old antique country stove when they were married in 2006, so it was a great place to do Scott's portrait.

I can't wait until little Ryder is born, and to show off the baby pictures!

We don't always stay indoors for bridal portraits, even though our outdoor wedding locations are in high demand. With Karen, we did a combination of both for her bridal session.

I get bored easily, and hate to do the same old thing over and over. Karen had the perfect look for a more unique bridal image on red satin. I was very pleased with the results!

I'll get to see Karen again on Friday for her wedding. We've done her engagement session, bridal session, and now...finally the wedding is almost here!

Ashley, Ashland, and J. K. scheduled their wedding with us over a year ago. We had plenty of time to plan, and I was fortunate to spend the entire day with them. Their family was absolutey wonderful and the best part is they live close by.

Most of our brides come from out of state, and I have to get to know them quickly on their wedding day.

Ashley is a true country gal and therefore ditched the wedding dress as soon as she could. We followed with a country couple and family theme for the rest of the afternoon.

Rebecca recently graduated from Pigeon Forge High School. Go Tigers! Although most high school seniors do their portrait session the summer just before their senior year, sometimes it's better to wait. I've had many high school seniors ask for a second photography session because their appearance changed so drastically during the year.

Rebecca will be headed to college soon to study forensic science. What a brain!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Cristal and Shaun had the perfect fairy tale wedding in the heart of the Smoky Mountains. Cristal fits the perfect description of a fairy princess, which must be the reason she wanted a fairy tale theme for one of her wedding images. I'm always thrilled to have special requests, especially when they're out of the ordinary!

Cassie and Nathan experienced the heat wave that passed through the Smoky Mountains this past weekend. It was incredibly hot, so we found places along our creek and within the shade of our picnic pavilion for some great wedding photography.

Cassie's flowers really added zest to her wedding images, courtesy of Kelly at From the Heart Florist in Pigeon Forge. I adored the bright colors of her bridal bouquet centered among the white flowers of her bridesmaids.

One of my favorite things to do is ask my grooms to "tell a secret" to their bride. The expressions that are garnered from this are priceless. No two images are alike in this way, because it is always deeply personal for each couple. Sometimes I get wild laughter, and sometimes I get a truly romantic look.

Mike and Meeka show romance with sensual overtones in their images. Meeka is an especially beautiful bride with her soft curls and delicate face.

Meeka had a special request for the image on our bridge with a "flowing veil." The wind wasn't blowing... the veil is lifted courtesy of my assistant.

Michelle and Troy were full of life and spontaneity on their wedding day! Michelle also had a great idea to decorate our picnic pavilion with beautiful lanterns specifically for their first dance together. It really set a romantic mood.

I was so touched by a note Michelle sent me after her wedding, that I would like to share it with all of you:


Troy and I want to thank you so much for creating the most romantic setting and atmosphere on your family farm. Your property captured everything we had hoped for and much more. We also enjoyed your energy during our photo shoot and keeping everyone smiling and focused. We loved our photos and can't thank you enough for the memories we will have forever.
Please don't hesitate to give a soon to be bride my phone number if they need a referral.
Thanks Again,
Michelle and Troy

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Nadine and Scott return! When they visted with us earlier for their engagement session it was threatening rain. However, on their wedding day they couldn't have asked for better weather. Great fun was had by all with fantastic food by The Wright Stuff Catering and plenty of dancing to the tunes provided by DJ Berry.

Scott and Nadine are truly happy together. They fit together like a glove and it was so easy to photograph them.

Pretty in pink...that's our bride, Lisa, and her handsome husband, Daniel.

June has turned out to be one of the most popular months to get married at Honeysuckle Hills. Our roses have been a big hit at our wedding arbor. They provide a nice, soft look for bridal portraits and really set the stage for romance!

Lisa's veil gave the finishing touch for her bridal portrait. It simply wouldn't have been the same without it!

What do you do when you have only a few precious days left with the man you love before he's shipped to another country far away, without any means of contact for months on end? You plan a wedding just like Emily did for Shane. Emily made sure to include as many symbolic and beautiful moments as possible from a dove release to a horse and carriage ride along our countryside.

I was able to photograph her loving side right along with her more adventurous one atop a Harley Davidson. It couldn't have been a more beautiful day for their wedding!
They will both be in my prayers until Shane arrives home in her arms safely.
Gwen and Rusty were simply picture perfect everywhere they were photographed. She fell into his arms at every perfect moment, and looked into his eyes with a glow I'm sure he'll never forget.

I used elegant posing with Gwen to match her beautiful gown, and also captured a moment or two where she exhibited a grace all her own.

Ashley and much more perfect could two names be?

Ashley wore a flirty wedding sundress, and Asher sported a shade of red that added spunk to their wedding images.

I always love to see a couple that smiles from ear to ear throughout their wedding! It's a great sign of the blessings they will experience for the years to come.