“One of the most remarkable things about love is that, despite very irritating people writing poems and songs about how pleasant it is, it really is quite pleasant.” – Lemony Snickett as quoted during Laura & Johnathan’s wedding ceremony
As a photographer, I love weddings and I’ve seen a lot of them! Marriage is super important and photographing two people starting that journey is so special (cliche, but true!) Every once in a while though, I photograph a wedding that absolutely sets my heart on fire and I knew from the moment they asked me to be their wedding photographer that Laura and Johnathan’s wedding would be that kind of wedding.
Laura and I met in college working on stage crew and ended up spending a lot of time together in the prop shop. After college we maintained that chat-once-every-year-or-two kind of relationship that so much of adulting seems to entail. Eventually I started noticing social media posts about some guy name John. Turns out that that guy was practically perfect for Laura in every way. The quiet to her storm, the John to her Johanna. Their much anticipated wedding day was set for June 28.
Every bride has expectations. Most of us hope and dream of a perfect day. As an artist and creative director, Laura had a specific vision for her day and she and family and friends put many hours into making her vision reality. They made over 500 paper flowers and loaded and unloaded countless antiques, old books, and beloved family heirlooms for the wedding decor. The week of the wedding rolled around, the pieces were coming together, and out of town family began to arrive.
Then, a mere three days before the wedding, Johnathan broke his elbow.
During one of the busiest weeks of her life, Laura dropped everything to be at the hospital with him, staying up all night and making sure he had everything he needed. *Cue all the feels.*
After days of little sleep, hospital appointments, lots of prescription medication, and a healthy dose of chaos, Laura and Johnathan’s wedding day dawned sunny and hot. Laura got ready at her parent’s home in Cleveland Heights, surrounded by her mom and her favorite girls. With their help, she slipped into her grandmother’s dress and donned her vintage style headpiece. Meanwhile, John was tightening his dapper floral tie and adding a monogramed pocket watch for a final gentlemanly touch.
The spot they had chosen for their first look and portraits was mere yards from the spot where John had proposed to Laura some months before.
While a first look is almost always accompanied by wedding day butterflies, this first look held even more anticipation than usual, given the uncertainty surrounding Johnathan’s pain and medication levels. At last the moment came – Laura nervously called his name, then held her breath. The moments that followed comprised one of the sweetest first looks I have ever witnessed. God is good!
After their first look and a few portraits, we met the wedding party for formals, starting with my personal favorite – the groomsmen sporting slings to match their fearless leader (who ironically did not wear his sling for photos.)
John and Laura’s ceremony was a vivid reflection of their individual personalities, of their relationship with each other, and most importantly, of their relationships with God!
Between laughter and tears, they radiantly declared their love for each other and commitment to God and their marriage.
Following an ample buffet (featuring family recipes and favorite dishes), speeches by the bride and groom’s family members offered additional insight into Laura & Johnathan’s character, uniqueness, and perfect match.
Their first dance was so incredibly sweet. Please keep in mind while viewing these photos that John.has.a.broken.elbow.
Their grand exit featured my favorite food ever (plain and bird safe), so naturally it was epic.
Throughout their wedding week and on their wedding day, John and Laura both radiated the strength and love through adversity that is essential for a good marriage and I can’t wait to see how God continues to be glorified in their marriage!
Photographer: Amy Lynn Photography Studio (me)
Second Photographer: Marina Claire (the second photographer was contracted by Amy Lynn Photography Studio to capture additional details and help me be in two places at once! 🙂 A few of Marina’s images are in this post – thanks Marina!)
Videographer: Owen Keller
Dress: Bride’s grandmother’s wedding dress
Her ring: Ashcroft & Oaks
His ring: Manly Bands
Flowers: labor of love, templates from Lia Griffith
Invitations: Sarah Greene
Cake: Pink Bandana Bakery
Portrait location: Wade Lagoon @ Cleveland Museum of Art