Hello world…

…I am back to blogging again after what seems like forever! Life has been exciting here! I managed to catch a nasty case of Influenza A and am still trying to get my energy back even though I have been up and around for a while. If you are waiting on anything from me, I am putting finishing touches on several orders today. If you don’t hear from me in the next couple of days though, please contact me.

Last weekend, our town celebrated its annual Tulip Festival. Eric and the boys escaped the madness by going on a fishing trip up North. Elsie and I stayed home and dressed up in Dutch costumes, watched parades, rode rides, slid down big yellow slides, and last but not least…ate lots of Tulip Festival food! Yesterday was Elsie’s Kindergarten program….they were supposed to dress up like a book character, and Elsie was (a very cute) Lucy from the Chronicles of Narnia. I will have pictures of all the above on my facebook page if you want to check it out! We are, all of us, recovering from everything! ๐Ÿ™‚

But the REAL reason for this post is the wedding I had the privilege of photographing on May 2. I am so anxious to share Eric and Karissa’s beautiful wedding with you!

Let’s start things off with this image of Eric finishing up getting ready before seeing his bride.

I really like this shot of Karissa’s sister holding the mirror for her as she is getting dressed in the room next door!

This is right before the couple’s first meeting…I just love the joy and anticipation on both of their faces!

It was a beautiful day…here we were having a little breeze action! If only I could control the wind! ๐Ÿ™‚ Actually, I always like it when brides choose to have their hair up on a breezy wedding day. An up do seems to help the bride to be relaxed and free of worry about her hair flying around when outside. Something to consider!

I LOVED the blue sky we had that day…it just said “Happy!” to me. So fitting for this very in love couple!

Wow…..STUNNING bride!

Eric, looking quite fine himself!

Here is a shot of the wedding party. Such a wonderful bunch of people! It was fun later on in the night to get to know the best man and maid of honor who each gave such touching and hilarious speeches. I have two words for you: INTERPRETIVE DANCE. You will only understand if you were there, but I don’t think I have laughed like that in quite a while! I know, I am jumping ahead. Back to the wedding party. I have to say that it was so obvious that everyone, from the ushers, to the personal attendants, to the children in the wedding party, thinks the world of Karissa and Eric. Everyone was wonderful to work with and it was neat to see that this couple is so very well loved by their friends and family.

Karissa’s Dad, who also officiated the wedding, as he is ready to give his daughter away in marriage.

There was a time of praise and worship at the very beginning of the ceremony. What a wonderful way to start such an important event!

The couple asked that my second shooter Jenni and I be at the front of church during the ceremony, and it was neat to be able to capture some of the emotion of the ceremony close up.

This was right after the ceremony as everyone else in the church sanctuary was watching a video presentation of pictures of the couple. Eric and Karissa were so easy to photograph…very affectionate with each other!

Eric and Karissa making their grand entrance into the reception hall!

The entire reception was “coffee shop” themed. Eric and Karissa had most of their dates and did most of their wedding planning at a coffee shop. They had a coffee shop logo designed, had a coffee shop corner in the reception hall complete with coffee drinks and treats for the guests. The meal consisted of croissants, wraps, and soup in bread bowls. So clever and well thought out!

The hilarious MCs sang in pseudo Spanish to each table of guests as they were dismissed to go eat.

Eric and Karissa’s first dance…after the traditional first dance they broke out and rocked the reception with a fun medley of dances and songs! Their guests loved it!

This is the end of their dance…I really like how you can see everyone’s reaction to their dancing.
I will leave you with what I often find to be such touching moments at wedding receptions…the bride and Father dance…

…and the Groom and Mother dance.

Eric and Karissa, thank you so very much for allowing me to document your wedding day. It was extraordinary. I wish you much joy, love and happiness!

Shannon - May 20, 2009 - 11:01 pm

HA! LOVE the pseudo Mariachi(Sp?)singers. Love the one with the veil flung out in the wind. Perfect visual of the married life spread out before them. Looks like a really fun couple and wedding too for that matter!

Anonymous - May 31, 2009 - 2:58 am

Vanessa…you are so gifted and the outcome is fabulous. Danielle Bleeker

I can’t quite put my finger…

…on what makes Jill and Dale’s family so much FUN to be around! I had several “doubled over in laughter and can’t hold the camera still” moments during their family shoot recently. I think they just know how to have a good laugh with each other, and with, and quite possibly AT :-), me!

This next image was taken at the beginning of the shoot. I tried a little heavier post processing on this image…it’s fun to bring out extra detail and texture in the family’s layered clothing and the weathered background.

JD, Amber and Autumn…

We only had a FEW honks and stares after I asked the family to get in the middle of the street for these next couple images. Worth it, I think!

Next we went to the family’s home for a few portraits…

One in their basement rec area…I love the floor tiles and the tin on the walls in this room!

We headed to the studio for a last family portrait…

…and then took a few more shots of Autumn in her pretty 8th grade graduation dress. I just love her red hair!

Thanks so much, Jill and Dale, for such a fun Saturday morning! I will be in touch when your gallery goes live.

Kortney Kruger - May 5, 2009 - 12:55 am

These pictures are so fun!! What a good looking family ๐Ÿ™‚

Samantha Bender - May 12, 2009 - 3:36 am

Gorgeous shots! I lovelovelovelove the first one! Beautiful family.

Tony - May 25, 2009 - 4:32 am

Love these photos, simply fantastic . Keep up the great work.

Once upon a cold and rainy afternoon…

…Joe and Katie came in for their engagement session. As you can see, the rain did not stop us from getting some really fun images outside!



Pretty sure this is my favorite engagement ring shot ever!

And I thought I would leave you with this shot….a little more post processing than I am used to…but I thought it fit this image well!

Joe and Katie…thanks for being good sports in the rain! I am looking forward to your Aug 8 wedding!

Mary Swart - April 29, 2009 - 6:27 pm

Great pictures, Vanessa! What a good looking couple )!!!!

Samantha Bender - April 29, 2009 - 6:43 pm

Love the first one!

robin - April 29, 2009 - 7:34 pm

I love her yellow jacket (and boots). See, if it had been a NICE day, you wouldn’t have gotten them! The ring shot is pretty sweet, too!

Shannon - April 30, 2009 - 4:19 pm

Ahhh, the engagement ring – great shot! I like the last shot too. They look like a young hip couple and it works perfectly.

Kristine and Travis…engaged!


…and Travis!


At the last minute, these guys came down from Sioux Falls a night early for their session, as the forecast was for rain the following day. It was a beautiful night…no wind! I really had a difficult time narrowing down favorites from this session…I love the couple’s clothing choice and also how the green grass is trying to peek through the brown!

Thanks, Kristine and Travis…I am looking forward to your wedding this summer!