A lot of photographers express that they cry at each of the weddings they shoot. I am not that photographer. I love, I laugh, I cheer, but I do not cry. I understand those who do, but I simply was not built to shed tears at weddings. The depth of the commitment I’m witnessing paired with the pressure of documenting such a life-changing event puts me into what I call my “professional calm”. I’m great in an emergency… though thankfully have never tested that at a wedding (knock on wood)! Imagine my surprise when I find myself in the middle of the dance floor at Brendan & Laurie’s reception, and, shortly after someone performs the worm, my eyes mist over. One glance around the room and I realized I could not evade that moment. I should have known this wedding would be an exception from the moment I learned more about their personal story. Perhaps it should have hit while watching Laurie lovingly interact with her overjoyed children & doting friends, repeatedly bursting into song as the finishing touches were applied to her hair. Countless toasts to Brendan’s compassion surely should have tipped me off. The sheer volume of adored guests who traveled from all across the country to Martha’s Vineyard was a testament to how committed of a community these two share. This day was an unending celebration of LOVE, between friends, family, and the Bride & Groom. Dry eyes? Nobody had a chance.
Laurie’s details were both gorgeous and meaningful. Her killer Romona Keveza gown was accented by an antique family bracelet. Her hairstyle featured a tiara, just like her mother did on her own wedding day.
Brendan’s family has spent many years on the Vineyard, so it was fitting that the entire wedding took place on the coast of Vineyard Haven at the West Chop Club. This club has all of the class without any of the pretension. Just as all of the ladies accented their stylish pewter dresses with splashes of orange jewelry, Morrice Florist offset the traditional setting with gorgeous pops of color.
Laurie’s family is so full of musical talent that James & I began to refer to them as the Von Trapp’s. Her father and sister each sang during the ceremony.
The moment Brendan & Laurie shared their first kiss, the wedding band marched through the ceremony playing Mardi Gras music. A surprise to the weddings guests, it was such a joy to watch their faces transition from UH (to) MAZING. Can I copyright that? Uh-Mazing ©brianamoore2011.
A few rainclouds threatened our portrait hour, but the (massive) wedding party were pros. We swept through the portraits and sent everyone off to the delicious Cajun inspired cocktail hour before a drop was able to fall.
Major compliments need to go out to Tea Lane Caterers. In addition to exceptional food, the service was impeccable. Every member of their staff was an absolute joy to work with… guest or vendor, everyone was treated with respect, enthusiasm, and a personal touch. They definitely sky-rocketed to the top of my preferred Vendor list!
Isn’t the West Chop Casino to die for?
I’m such a sucker for the shoulder kiss. Huge thanks to Eugene DiFrancesco of EugeneWorks for the ample videolight, as well as the continuous laughter!
Remember that little tidbit about Laurie coming from a musical family? The fun & surprises didn’t stop at the ceremony. In addition to lovely a song written and performed by Laurie’s siblings, the bride needed to shine as well. And shine she did… so brightly, it nearly melted our faces off. Sitting Brendan in a chair, Laurie & Co (aka her 2 vivacious daughters & the fantastic wedding band) performed a fierce version of Duffy’s “Mercy”, complete with choreography. She followed this with a gorgeous rendition of the classic love song, At Last.
In addition to the tears, this reception changed something else in me… my belief that people should hire a Dj over a band. Mike Benjamin Band rocked the house. There was not a pair of feet left at this reception that stayed off the dance floor… and a few of those feet danced right onto the stage to perform with them. The energy and the flow of the music was perfectly paced. When the band took their break, people finally stopped to eat their cake. When dancing beats out dessert, you know you have a good thing going!
B & LO, as I look at this picture above of your “signature” dance move, I can’t help but be overwhelmed with joy. I am so honored to have shared in this day with you. The two of you are a definition of heart & loyalty, of warmth and kindness. As partners, parents, and professionals, I wish you the very best in everything that you do… though you don’t really need it. You are truly blessed.