East End Beach fall family portrait in Portland

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I first photographed this family when Sela was a baby and sweet parents Susan and Chris doted lovingly over their daughter. Then along came little brother William, who I had the pleasure of meeting when he, too, was a baby. We convened for another session when both were a bit older, and mobile, and raced around a favorite park near Portsmouth. This year they came to my favorite park in Portland for pictures at the East End Beach. Different location, but the racing around was the same. It felt so familiar to be calling "William, be careful on the dock!" "William, please wait for me!" lol. Little boys are busy!

Photographing families is like a mirror experience for me to my own life, and I find myself taking the pictures I would want of my own family. That silhouette? Oh, I'd make it a canvas and put it over my couch! Some of those expressions and subtle interactions, the chipped nail polish and embroidered denim coat, oh goodness, how I wish we could freeze time! Photographs are how we will remember this age, those haircuts, those little hands, the love. I'm so so grateful to be given the chance to capture it and commend parents for making portrait sessions an annual priority.

private island engagement session off the coast of Boothbay Harbor

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Ruth and Dana picked me up at the public dock in Boothbay Harbor on their whaler with their pooch Whaler. We cruised out to nearby Squirrel Island, a private residential island where their wedding will take place next year. They gave me a walking tour of this magical place, pointing out tidbits of history of the houses we passed, overlooks, paths and filled me in on wedding details. It was a wonderful way to get to know these two better, who have known one another since they were little, both summering on the island their whole lives. Counting down the days until I can return with them next September!!

York engagement session of Anne and Craig

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These two were in Maine for their engagement party in York at one of the rental homes that Anne's family owns, right on the water.  They had traveled from California to get together with family and friends for a long weekend of celebrating and I was happy to meet up with them to wander around town to some of Anne's favorite spots.  We made it down to the beach with a view of the York Harbor Reading Room, the beautiful venue for their June wedding next year.  Then we hopped in the car and scoped out a few spots in the village, including the adorable town hall.

Anne and Craig, I had such a lovely time getting to know you and hearing about your vision for the big day! 

fall wedding of Sandy and Elliott at Laudholm Farm

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Sandy and Elliott met me at the emilie inc. office five months before their wedding day.  I had actually first "met" them months earlier via phone, so it was great to see them in-person before their big day.  Fast forward to their October wedding day, I'm always shocked at how fast time seems to fly from my initial meeting with couples.  After a brisk start, the rain stopped and the sun came out.  The beautiful Laudholm Farm played host to their celebration, one of my favorite places to photograph, no matter the season.  Elliott and the groomsmen got ready at the Haven by the Sea, an adorable church-turned-inn run by the hospitable Susan and John.  They helped with boutonnieres and let me take the lobby over for some photos of the guys as the rain petered off.  I walked down the road to Sandy's aunt Linda and uncle Bill's summer home on Wells Beach where she and bridesmaids prepped.  I was warmly welcomed by the family and found the girls were giddy but calm.  Sandy's dad Tom might have been the most excited while working on his photo bombing skills.  The sun was out and we were able to snap a few shots at the house before heading to Laudholm for a first look and some family formals ahead of the ceremony.

Reverend Richard C. Allen from Sandy's family congregation back home in Connecticut officiated the ceremony.  "The Rev" as they call him, has known Sandy since she was born, so I can imagine how special it was for him to officiate her nuptials.  Fall foliage was the beautiful backdrop for the ceremony and family photos.  We even snagged some sunset shots before the goosebumps took hold of Sandy and Elliott.  Everyone thawed out in the tent, decked out by Sarah Goodwin of Daisies and Pearls and were nourished by delicious food from Blue Elephant Catering.  The Bob Charest Band kept folks shakin' it on the dance floor that they had no idea the autumn temps had dropped to a chilly 46 degrees.  Both Sandy and Elliott's parents love to dance, each showing off different styles.  Elliot's parents, Karla and Mike, were precise with their steps.  Sandy's parents, Sue and Tom, were a little more progressive with their dance moves -- an enthusiastic twirl landed both of them on the floor, followed by laughter (a sight I've seen before at weddings -- there's always one in the bunch!)!  All in all, it was great day of wedded celebration.  I left knowing that Sandy and Elliott had an undeniable love and respect for each other, and I felt honored to document such a meaningful moment in their lives.

Congratulations, Sandy and Elliott!  So happy for you two!  Hope you had fun on your Miami mini-moon and even more fun on your big-moon to Thailand this winter!

How they met, in their own words:

We met when we both lived in Washington, DC. It was Sandy's last weekend in DC, before she was going to be moving up to Connecticut for the summer, and then off to Chicago for grad school. Sandy was out with her friends on Saturday night, at a VERY classy establishment (read: dive bar) called Millie & Al's. Elliott was also there with a group of friends. Millie and Al's has a very special feature - an over-sized light bulb behind the bar - when this light bulb goes on, Jello-shots are only $1 each! So naturally Elliott bought 20 of them...but then all but 2 of his friends left, so he had a lot of extra Jell-O shots. Elliott spied a cute redhead across the room, and generously offered his extra Jell-O shots to Sandy and her friends. Sandy, having spent an overwhelming amount of her college summers at concerts at the Hartford Meadows, was very accustomed to taking Jell-O shots from friendly strangers. We clicked right away, spent that night dancing and hanging out, and then saw each other every day for the next week. That Friday, Sandy even convinced Elliott to play hookie from work, and drive with her in a UHaul van from DC up to Connecticut! (As a tribute to our very classy first date, our wedding toast will feature both champagne and Jell-O shots!)
 

Our wedding planning and inspiration has centered around wanting to get together with all of our family and close friends, and have a great celebration! Naturally our priorities were to find a gorgeous venue, hire a fabulous live band, and of course provide great food (lobster!) and an open bar. The rest of the details can be characterized as understated, classic New England, while playing up the natural beauty of Laudholm.

 
photographer: Whitney, emilie inc. photographyvenue: Wells Reserve at Laudholm, Wells, Maine • coordinator: Sarah Goodwin, Daisies and Pearlscaterer: Blue Elephantflowers: Emily Carter Floral Designceremony/cocktail musicians: Affordable Elegance band: Bob Charest Bandcake: The Winey Bakermake-up: Brianna Rothmanhair: Amber Morin • tent, lighting: A+ Rentalstransportation: First Student gown: Rivini at Belle Vie Bridal Couture, Chicago • gals: J Crew • guys: Hugo Boss at Nordstrom • invitation: Paperless Post • minimoon: Miami • honeymoon: Thailand
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