When I first met Maureen and Russell, they were living in a 28-foot trailer. As a traveling physical therapist and travel nurse duo, these two have worked all over (Phoenix AZ, Colorado Springs CO, San Francisco CA, San Diego CA, Tampa FL, and Vancouver, just to name a few). There’s nothing like living in a 28-foot house on wheels for three years to get real comfortable with each other real fast and have the most adventurous relationship EVER, like traveling to over 25 states and hiking over 30 national parks together (and with their leash-trained cat Winston named after New Girl’s Winston, duh).
These two are the absolute best of friends and make each other laugh uncontrollably. Their joy and love was entirely infectious and I was my absolute happiest, truest self around them, reminding me over and over why I love being a photographer. Their wedding day and their love story is one that will stay with me for the rest of my life.
I started the day at 11 a.m. at Maureen’s sister’s home, capturing details as the girls got hair and makeup done, while my second shooter was with the guys. The above image of her dress hanging on the front stoop is one of my favorite dress shots! When Maureen’s mom saw me hanging it there, she asked if I wanted her to trim the hydrangeas, and I immediately say, “No way! I love them in the shot.”
The image to the right, with the wedding date blocked off, was a really fun find. Teeny details like these help tell the full story of the day.
The 2 p.m. ceremony was at Church of the Gesu in University Heights. I loved having access to the choir loft for some wide shots!
The ceremony ended at 2:40, followed by a receiving line. Not all couples opt to do this, but it’s a nice way to greet your guests if you don’t plan to be in attendance at cocktail hour. After a 20-minute cut off, I pulled the couple away to begin family photos. Since the weather was too good to be true, we decided to do photos outside and make the most of natural light instead of on the altar.
We took photos at a large open space within the North Chagrin Reservation, and the whole experience couldn’t have been more perfect! We had an overcast sky, 1.5 hours, and even took a mid-photo break for some Jimmy Johns!
I’m sure from the photo featured on the left, you can see how much fun we had. Their giggles were contagious!
We kicked off the evening at the Ariel International Center, a historic building overseeing the lake and the Cleveland skyline. The Ariel is a popular venue for Cle-lovin’ couples and a draw is the ability to have a ceremony and cocktail hour on the rooftop.
We didn’t have much of a sunset, but we went out to the rooftop for some shots at the end of the night.
Photographer: Laurie Hamame Photography
Ceremony: Church of the Gesu
Reception: Ariel International Center
Dress: Radiant Bride Cle
Bridesmaid dresses: Azazie
Florals: Something Borrowed Blooms
Makeup: Make Up by Rachel
Hair: Hair by Jeneen
DJ: Mix Maker Entertainment
Cake: Sweet Cakes by Kathleen
Dessert table: Colourwheel Bakeshop
Catering: Sausalito Cle
Invitations: Paper Culture
Limo: A1 Mr Limo
First dance: Free by Zac Brown Band