I’m not sure where to start. Truly. This wasn’t anywhere near a typical wedding for me to photograph. Want to know why?

Best Wedding Photographers ClevelandLet’s start here. Meet Kate.

Wedding at Cleveland Art MuseumKate is brilliant, lively, funny, and a billion other adjectives that simply describe a beautiful human being.

Candid Wedding Photographers ClevelandKate is the kind of person that shines inwardly.  Make up need not be applied for this woman to show her beauty.

Cleveland Art Museum Atrium WeddingSeen above; Kate in her natural element.

Cleveland Museum of Art wedding receptionWedding Photographers ClevelandNik.  Nik is Kate’s soul mate.  Nik’s a good man.  Strong, charismatic, charming, [ wicked creatively gifted ] and has a depth to him you have to earn to share in.

Wedding Photographers in Cleveland OhioHe’s a snappy dresser.  I respect that in a fellow gentleman.  Nick and I have similar fashion tastes [ he was at my home about a month ago and we were both talking about our recent love of a certain pair of Jeans ]

Cleveland Art Museum Atrium Wedding ReceptionSeen above: Nik celebrating a-la Lebron James style.

Cleveland Museum WeddingThese two. They became friends of mine in this process.  Beyond just the typical “oh you’ll photography my wedding and we’ll get to know each other” kind of friends.  The “lets hang out and drink bourbon together and share life” kind of friends.  Yes. That kind of friendship.

[ PS – The crazy light peeking out from them isn’t magic, nor photoshop, it was some fun light painting I did with them outside the Cleveland Museum of Art during their wedding reception there ]

Art Museum Wedding Reception ClevelandI’ve wanted to write this blog entry since they first invited me to photograph and film their wedding.  The more I got to know them, the more I couldn’t wait to tell their story.

Bride and Groom in Cleveland Ohio WeddingThe truth is, I can’t tell it all.  Given the large amount of wedding photography I will be sharing in this post, I’ll let the imagery do most of the talking [ insert cliche statement about a photograph and a billion words here ]


I’ll also let the short teaser we released the week after their nuptials give insight into who they are.  [ Truthfully I think it will also give you a taste of our aesthetic approach to wedding films here ]

Photojournalistic Wedding Photographer ClevelandCleveland Art Museum Terrace Wedding

We’re fortunate in Cleveland to have the Cleveland Museum of Art.  Ranked second in the country, our Art Museum is a gem in our city.  If you haven’t been?  Go.  Go Right now.  It’s one of the only museums in the country where the general exhibit is still free to view and enjoy.  Seriously.  Go.  Why are you still reading this?  Go!

Cleveland Art Museum WeddingThe Atrium in the Cleveland Museum of art is an engineering, architectural and aesthetic wonder.  It’s no surprise that a gifted architect [ Nik ] would want to marry a lovely work of art [ Kate ] in this sculpted yet  organic venue.

Cleveland Ohio wedding reception venuesBest wedding reception venues ClevelandThe Atrium at the Cleveland Museum of Art also hosts galas and events [ weddings for example ].  Seen throughout this section of our blog is Kate and Nik’s wonderful reception design custom crafted by the following dream team of event professionals;

Planstscaping Blooms Cleveland FlowersLet me pause here.  Your vendors matter.  I’ve been a professional wedding photographer in Cleveland for the past 11 years, and I can’t voice often enough that the professionalism and experience of your vendor team will deeply impact the way you feel and remember your day.  Long story short?  Don’t hire folks you can’t trust with the most important day of your life.

Outdoor wedding in clevelandCase in point?  Above is Elizabeth, the wedding coordinator for the Cleveland Museum of Art.  Wedding Vendors like her show case so much class and professionalism.  She casually, calmly and discretely walked out to help Kate’s beautiful wedding veil not get stuck on the Cleveland Art Museum steps as kate entered her wedding ceremony on the south terrace.

Best wedding reception venues ClevelandOk, I’m off my soap box now 🙂

Hilton Cleveland WeddingOn track with our story.  The new Hilton hotel in Cleveland is where Kate spent the morning preparing for her wedding day.  More on that in a moment.

Wedding Photography in ClevelandLet’s talk about shoes [ i’m an admitted shoe fiend – so this is well trodden territory for me ]

Cleveland Wedding PhotographerI LOVE lines. lines lines lines.

Unique Wedding Photographer ClevelandLike Kate and NIk’s love story, these shoes were made in Florence [ Firenze, to my Italian speaking friends ]

Cleveland Wedding PhotographerThe love affair that began in Tuscany so many years ago, culminated this wonderful day in the fall.  How fitting that every detail in dress and decor subtly honored their beginning.

Cleveland Hilton WeddingSeriously impressed by the new Hilton in Cleveland.  They had prepared a celebratory plate of custom macaroons and wine for our couple.

Wedding Photographers in Cleveland OhioI loved photographing these treats, but it was a bit rough to keep my hands off them as I worked 🙂

Wedding Photographers ClevelandHilton Cleveland WeddingCleveland Hilton WeddingCandid Wedding Photographers ClevelandKate is an instructor at Cleveland Yoga, and spent the morning practicing Yoga prior to the start of her day.

Photojournalistic Wedding Photographer ClevelandUnique Wedding Photographer ClevelandCleveland Wedding PhotographerBest Wedding Photographers ClevelandThe men on the other hand?  At Nik’s family home.  Drinking 🙂

Candid Wedding Photographers ClevelandWedding Photography in ClevelandCelebrating friendship and backstory is more like it actually.

Cleveland Wedding PhotographerWedding Photographers ClevelandI love this image.  I pressed my self directly under them as they cheered Nik on.  This was a real moment – not a staged / repeated moment.

Photojournalistic Wedding Photographer ClevelandSpeaking of authentic; I noticed Nik’s father Vince sitting out on the back patio, penning away his speech for later that evening.

Unique Wedding Photographer ClevelandBest Wedding Photographers ClevelandWedding Photography in ClevelandI love the custom monograms.

Wedding Photographers in Cleveland OhioUnique Wedding Photographer ClevelandWedding Photographers ClevelandNik’s parents love him very much.  Spending time with Vince and Irene throughout the process of coordinating and planning for their wedding day, I really got to see how much they care for their son.  It’s evident as well that they completely adore Nik’s choice of Kate too; Irene from the get go was convinced that the two were meant to be.

Hilton Cleveland WeddingLindsay London FTW.  This lady knows how to rock some wonderful make-up on our brides / bridesmaids.  Now if only I could talk Lindsay into coming to my house and making my bald head look pretty? 🙂

Cleveland Hilton WeddingI speak often of trust and relationships.  Kate trusting her soon to be sister in law Emery with her wedding day make-up is a beautiful statement of trust and her belief in family.

Cleveland Wedding PhotographerCandid Wedding Photographers ClevelandYou can tell that Kate and Emery aren’t just “legal sisters” but true buddies.

Hilton Cleveland WeddingPhotojournalistic Wedding Photographer ClevelandKate absolutely loves her new sister.  Love this.

Outdoor wedding cleveland Art MuseumThe Cleveland Museum of Art was ready when we arrived on scene for the upcoming nuptials.

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Wedding Photographers in Cleveland OhioI am a creative photographer – I veer far away from “traditional” wedding photography.  That doesn’t mean that I don’t value images that simply showcase relationships in a timeless fashion.

Wedding Photography in ClevelandThe simple image I captured above was an observation I noted while photographing Kate and her mother.   This wasn’t prompted, coached or faked.  This is real.

Best Wedding Photographers ClevelandCleveland Art Museum Terrace WeddingOutdoor wedding in clevelandFor the above and below image, I threw Kate over my shoulder and carried her across the lawn of the Cleveland Art Museum so that her wedding gown would not be marred by a grass stain.

Cleveland Wedding PhotographerWedding Photographers ClevelandUnique Wedding Photographer ClevelandElegance in simplicity.

Best Wedding Photographers ClevelandWedding Photographers in Cleveland OhioSeen above; Kate reading Nik’s letter, just moments prior to the wedding ceremony outside.

Photojournalistic Wedding Photographer ClevelandA few moments later, Nik is receiving an incredibly special present from Kate. Nothing intimate, but certainly personal and unique, Kate and our creative staff secretly filmed an incredibly unique surprise film for Nik to receive.

Candid Wedding Photographers ClevelandFor privacy sake, I will not share the surprise film here, but I want to re-iterate that is nothing risqué.  It is simply a personal love letter and creative take on telling their story. [  I’m confident Kate and Nik will gladly share with you if you ask ]

Wedding Photography in ClevelandBecause it was a surprise, and a personal creative endeavor of mine, it was an honor to be present as he received it.

Outdoor wedding cleveland Art MuseumCleveland Art Museum Terrace WeddingKate “entering” her ceremony on the South terrace outside of the Cleveland Museum of Art was a sight to see.  The long walk down the grand white stone stairs was something out of a movie.

Wedding at Cleveland Art MuseumAnd it will be 🙂  Our film team was present to capture the entirety of it.  The entirety of Kate’s processional were rehearsed and mapped out by our film team [ this is where the type A personality of your photographer is an asset ].  Our team literally printed out satellite maps of the Cleveland Museum of Art and precisely planned each camera position and movement.

Outdoor wedding cleveland Art MuseumNone of that really matters though.  What matters is how Nik felt as he saw his bride approach.

Cleveland Art Museum Terrace WeddingWhat matters is how Dick felt as he escorted his daughter to the rest of her life.

Outdoor wedding in clevelandWhat matters is trying to encapsulate and preserve those feelings in static imagery.

Outdoor wedding cleveland Art MuseumCleveland Art Museum Terrace WeddingIt’s the simple and quick observations that make for the most stunning and timeless wedding photographs.

Wedding at Cleveland Art MuseumOutdoor wedding in clevelandLike Kate’s sister holding her veil, as it blew in the late summer breeze.

Outdoor wedding cleveland Art MuseumCleveland Art Museum Terrace WeddingSeen above is Nik’s favorite image.   In our offices, upon seeing the artwork for the first time, Nik repeatedly expressed that this was his favorite.

Wedding at Cleveland Art MuseumOutdoor wedding in clevelandCleveland Art Museum Atrium Wedding

Cleveland Art Museum Atrium Wedding ReceptionKate’s wedding reception design was a perfect match for the natural and open vibe of the Cleveland Art Museum Atrium.   Kate recalled this moment to me at their image premier, she commented that it felt surreal to finally walk through everything with Elizabeth.  It must have felt amazing to see such an effort of personal expression and months of planning come to life.

Planstscaping Blooms Cleveland FlowersCleveland Museum of Art wedding receptionTheir head table is one of my favorite art installations at the reception.  I love Arne’s work so much; spreading the petals at the feet of the table is such a bold and yet refined touch.

Art Museum Wedding Reception ClevelandCleveland Museum WeddingCleveland Art Museum WeddingBride and Groom in Cleveland Ohio WeddingSubtlety is something I believe deeply in with the artwork we produce here.  Most of our work is “observational imagery” [ my nomenclature for photography that we see intuitively, and reflexively capture ]

Cleveland Wedding PhotographerCandid Wedding Photographers ClevelandKate’s veil trailed long behind her.  Nik and her have that affect on those they know and interact with; their impact and presence can long be felt after you have been with them.

Bride and Groom in Cleveland Ohio WeddingWedding Photographers ClevelandBest Wedding Photographers ClevelandI work hard to create fresh photography for my couples.  These are perhaps my favorite “bridal portraits” I’ve captured in years.

Unique Wedding Photographer ClevelandBride and Groom in Cleveland Ohio WeddingWedding Photographers in Cleveland OhioCleveland Art Museum Atrium WeddingThe evening was set for a wonderful party.  Hundreds of Kate and Nik’s closest friends and family gathered together in the Art Museum’s Atrium in Cleveland for their wedding reception.

Cleveland Art Museum Atrium Wedding ReceptionNik is not only a gifted architect, but an envisioned designer as well.  Their logo is present throughout most of their wedding day, having a gobo produced and placed up on the wall of the Museum had a powerful effect.

Cleveland Museum of Art wedding receptionArt Museum Wedding Reception ClevelandEntrances for a bridal party are often somewhat predictable to be honest.  But Kate and Nik’s friends?  Nate imitated the role of a bull perfectly – the matador entrance was amazing and fun.  Well played Mr. Bailey.  Well played.

Cleveland Museum WeddingCleveland Art Museum WeddingI love Kate’s reaction as she listened to her father speak.  As a father of two little girls, I often think of how they will feel if I get to speak to them on their wedding day.

Cleveland Ohio wedding reception venuesBest wedding reception venues ClevelandCheers!

Cleveland Art Museum Atrium WeddingCleveland Art Museum Atrium Wedding ReceptionFreaking A.  These are my people.  They know how to dance, laugh and love.

Cleveland Museum of Art wedding receptionArt Museum Wedding Reception ClevelandCleveland Museum WeddingLimoncello as a thank you gift to cap the night?  Yessir.

Cleveland Art Museum WeddingIt’s funny how life works.  I first met Kate and Nik as potential clients.  I now realize that I was meeting lifelong friends.  Cheers to the future my friends.  As you say often; “Never settle for less”.

Cleveland Art Museum Atrium Wedding Reception

Brett

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