Engagement and Proposal Photography in Buffalo

Jae Youn and Darren’s wedding engagement and surprise(!) proposal photography at Bidwell Parkway and Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY

Until couple weeks ago, Jae Youn and Darren were one of the many couples I’ve booked in 2020 who I had only been able to get to know through email. In an effort to limit my exposure to people and stay as healthy as possible for the actual photo shoots that are happening this year, I haven’t been meeting clients for consultations in person. As we all know, Zoom calls and emails are just no match for a real live hangout though. SO, I was very excited to learn that Darren was going to be able to come visit WNY (he lives in San Francisco) to see Jae Youn and have their engagement photography session at Bidwell Parkway and Tifft Nature Preserve here in Buffalo!

What I didn’t realize, was that this couple hadn’t OFFICIALLY got engaged yet! They were deep in planning their wedding, but with COVID-19 and living on opposite coasts, they hadn’t technically sealed the deal!

The session started as any ordinary engagement session would. We began at Bidwell Parkway where the rows of trees were just starting reach their colorful fall prime.

bride and groom pose for engagement photos among fall foliage in Bidwell Parkway in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom walk holding hands during engagement photography session among fall foliage in Bidwell Parkway in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom laugh during engagement photos among fall foliage in Bidwell Parkway in Buffalo, NY

From Bidwell Parkway we made our way to Tifft Nature Preserve for the next round of photos.

bride and groom pose for portraits during engagement photography session among fall foliage in Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom laugh during engagement photography session among fall foliage in Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom laugh during engagement photography session among fall foliage in Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY

As we walked to the next photography spot at Tifft, Darren flashed a ring box at me when Jae wasn’t looking. It was a really nice warm day (by Buffalo standards) and I had wondered why Darren was carrying around a down coat. Turns out he was carrying the coat so he could hide the ring box inside! I was extremely confused though. We were taking their engagement photos and the wedding was already booked, why would he have a ring now?! I rolled with it thinking maybe they just didn’t have the ring yet when they decided to get married. Perhaps the ring itself was the surprise. Turns out, nope, this was the real proposal!

man shows woman ring during wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
man wipes woman
man picks up woman and spins her during wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
man and woman laugh during wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
man and woman hug during wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride checks out ring during wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom laugh during wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom kiss during wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY

How sweet was that proposal?! They were so excited and relieved to finally be officially engaged! Jae had been worried she wouldn’t have a ring for their engagement photography, but for some reason she was just rolling with it too. The rest of their pictures look much more complete with that little extra sparkle, if I do say so.

bride and groom snuggle in the cat tails after wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom embrace in front of pine trees after wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom embrace in front of pine trees after wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom smile for photographer in front of pine trees after wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom embrace in front of cat tails after wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom hold hands on top of hill in field after wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and grooms arms around each other after wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride and groom embrace in front of pine trees after wedding engagement proposal at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY

That’s all for this one! I can’t wait until next year when these two tie the knot and we can celebrate at The Foundry!

If you or someone you know is looking for proposal or engagement photography in Buffalo, have them contact me here!

Policing the Rochester Police – Silvon Simmons

Supporting photography from a Reuters investigation in to the policing of the Rochester, NY police in the wake of the 2016 shooting of Silvon Simmons and the recent killing of Daniel Prude.

Silvon Simmons poses for portrait in front of driveway where he was shot by police in Rochester, NY

I’ve made the drive back and forth between Buffalo and Rochester, NY quite a few times this year to cover an array of stories for Reuters, all revolving around the black community. From grassroots COVID-19 education to Black Lives Matter protests, I’ve got to know Rochester on a new level through these assignments.

Yesterday, Reuters released one of these stories. It’s an exhaustive investigation by writers, Lisa Girion and Reade Levinson, in to the very complicated topic of policing police. This is a very good, important and tough read (and not just because of its length and depth.) Without sensationalism, it breathes life in to the issues through the story of Silvon Simmons, the innocent victim of a 2016 Rochester police shooting. I highly recommend setting aside some time to read the article. It can be found here.

As part of this complex story, I had the opportunity to photograph and even interview some of the folks involved. This allowed me to experience the humanity behind the tragic events that have transpired between members of the black community and the Rochester Police.

Pictured above and below is Silvon Simmons. Silvon was shot three times in the back by a Rochester police officer in his driveway (pictured behind him) upon returning home from the store with his neighbor. The officer claimed he thought Silvon was someone else. Without checking his license plate, calling for back up, turning on sirens, etc. he pursued Silvon who ran for cover in his driveway upon seeing a backlit figure running at him with a gun.

Silvon Simmons poses for portrait in front of driveway where he was shot by police in Rochester, NY

Silvon survived the shooting, but suffered a collapsed lung among other injuries. He still has bullets lodged in his body and feels pain every day. To add insult to injury, Silvon was arrested for trying to shoot the police officer, despite there being no evidence. Silvon spent years in jail before he received a not guilty verdict at trial.

This was Silvon’s first time back at the scene. He lived in the gray house seen in the background with his partner and their three children. That snack run changed his life forever.

Loretta Scott, Rochester, NY City Counsel President, poses for portrait in city hall

More recently, a video surfaced of a man, Daniel Prude. Prude was being restrained by the Rochester Police while suffering a mental health episode. Prude later died of complications due to asphyxia. These events caused an uprising of rallies and protests in the city of Rochester and an amplified outcry for the policing of police. Seen below are the early makings of a memorial for Daniel Prude on Jefferson Ave., where the fatal restraint went down.

memorial to Daniel Pride in Rochester, NY

Community leaders like Mayor Lovely Warren and Rev. Lewis Stewart (pictured below) among others spoke out against the events in an attempt to unite the community.

Mayor Lovely Warren speaks to press about the killing of Daniel Prude in Rochester, NY
Rev. Lewis Steward speaks during vigil for Daniel Prude in Rochester, NY

They were met with frustrated, fed up community members for whom comforting words were no longer enough. Below, as a vigil for Daniel Prude was about to begin at First Church of God, Jordyn Smith (pictured) and dozens of other protestors stormed the scene, demanding the people there join them in marching for real change.

Jordyn Smith during Black Lives Matter protest in Rochester, NY

Protestors eventually gathered by the hundreds on Jefferson Ave. and demonstrations lasted for over a week.

people stand with signs during Black Lives Matter protest in Rochester, NY
Black Lives Matter protest in Rochester, NY
people kneel around memorial to Daniel Prude during Black Lives Matter protest in Rochester, NY
person lights candle at memorial to Daniel Prude during Black Lives Matter protest in Rochester, NY
child says prayer in front of memorial to Daniel Prude during Black Lives Matter protest in Rochester, NY

The incidents surrounding Daniel Prude’s death felt all too familiar for other victims of police violence. I had the opportunity to spend an afternoon with Silvon Simmon’s parents, Frank and Sharlene. They were living in Memphis at the time Silvon was shot, but immediately packed their bags for Rochester and have been there to support Silvon ever since. Frank and Sharlene were incredibly hospitable and welcomed me and all my big questions with open hearts. We poured through family photos together as they recalled all kinds of great stories about their family history.

Frank and Sharlene Simmons, parents of Silvon Simmons, pose for portrait in their home in Rochester, NY
childhood photos of Silvon Simmons

As the afternoon rolled on, we laughed, we cried… It was really touching to better understand what their experience has been through all this, and to hear their hopes for progress.

Frank and Sharlene Simmons, parents of Silvon Simmons, during a Reuters interview in their home in Rochester, NY
Frank and Sharlene Simmons, parents of Silvon Simmons, pose for portrait in their home in Rochester, NY

I also met with Rochester City Counsel President, Loretta Scott, pictured below. The city counsel is currently fighting to create a police accountability board. This volunteer board would help investigate complaints against police and review policing practices.

I urge everyone to read this Reuters piece. This is no easy subject, but one we hope will continue the conversation about accountability and help to save black lives like Silvon’s. Here’s the link: https://www.reuters.com/investigates/section/usa-police-rochester/

Silvon Simmons poses for portrait in front of driveway where he was shot by police in Rochester, NY

All inquiries, please contact me here.

The Admiral Room – a Buffalo, NY Wedding Venue

Inspiration and highlights from weddings photographed in the Admiral Room

I had the opportunity to tour the Admiral Room at the Marin several years ago when it was up for sale. This renaissance revival style high rise built in 1913 was formerly a bank and had been sitting empty for many years. Sad remnants of the building’s past remained in the form of abandoned cubicles and office carpeting. At the time, a friend of mine had visions of turning it in to a wedding venue and wanted some feedback from a few of us in the industry. I took one step inside the building and it was an instant, big time YES from me. My friend inevitably passed on the opportunity, but I’m SO glad someone else went through with this project and converted the space in to a wedding venue. The Admiral Room is a truly special place and an important part of the history of Buffalo, NY. It deserved all the amazing renovations it has received and all the smiling faces that now celebrate within its walls.

It has been so exciting to experience the rebirth of the Admiral Room at the Marin as a wedding venue. From a vacant building to a stunning space filled with joy and celebration, it’s been a transition for the ages. I’ve had the opportunity to photograph a few events in this space so far. I’ll be adding more pictures to this feature over time, but please enjoy these highlights to date!

Julie stopped in to the Admiral Room before heading to her wedding ceremony to check out her decorations and get a few portraits with her bridesmaids and sweet flower girls.

Kelly and Sean had their wedding ceremony in the Admiral Room

The Admiral Room doesn’t need much dressing up, but a little decor never hurts! Here’s some inspiration!

Guests typically gather in the front of the Admiral Room for cocktail hour, right after they pick their jaws up off the floor upon seeing this beautiful space.

Cocktail hour can also be a great time to gather extended family for a portrait!

Couples are often introduced in to their wedding reception from this amazing little balcony high above the ballroom floor.

Dinner is a great time for couples to sneak away for a few portraits outside the Admiral Room. Buffalo’s Main St. provides a most charming urban backdrop.

Back inside, it’s time to dance (and eat cake)!

To be continued! Here’s looking forward to documenting many more happy memories in the Admiral Room in Buffalo, NY!

To see some of these weddings in their entirety and peep the vendors involved, check out these links:

Julie + Chris

Kelly + Sean

Engagement Photography at City Hall and Tifft Preserve in Buffalo

Courtney + John

When I first met Courtney and John for their engagement photography session, the typical small talk began. “Soooooo, how did you two meet?” I asked.

“Do you want the real story or the story we tell people?” Courtney asked in return.

Of course I wanted to hear BOTH stories, and then ask many follow up questions about why they have TWO!

“We met in a bar through mutual friends,” John told me.

But the real story, as Courtney told, was that she saw John on American Idol back in 2004 when he was just 16 years old (!) and took an interest in him. Some seven years later, as a newly single Courtney sat around her college dorm room, she wondered, “hmmm wonder what John from Idol is up to” and decided to look him up on social media! She found him on Facebook and they connected! WAY better story than, “we met in a bar!”

As it turns out, Courtney is a jazz singer as well and these two share a deep, common love for music. Ah music, the great uniter. They also have Buffalo in common! John is originally from the Buffalo, NY area and Courtney went to college here. Buffalo holds a special spot in both their histories and was a meaningful place to have their engagement photos taken. And this is of course how we end up here on this blog!

We began Courtney and John’s engagement photography session in the Lafayette Square area of Buffalo. This square is a great spot to get many different urban backdrops between the glorious Hotel Lafayette, the “Wildflowers for Buffalo” mural, the iconic views of City Hall and more.

Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Wildflowers for Buffalo mural in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Wildflowers for Buffalo mural in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Wildflowers for Buffalo mural in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Wildflowers for Buffalo mural in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at City Hall in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at City Hall in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Lafayette Square in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Lafayette Square in Buffalo, NY

Buffalo City Hall would have been a perfectly wonderful pinnacle for this engagement session, but we wanted to mix it up with some more natural settings and Tifft Nature Preserve was calling our names. Tifft is one of my favorite locations for photography. This preserve suits my style very well and offers a ton of variety between the woods, fields, pond, etc.

Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
bride laughs as groom hugs her from behind during wedding engagement portrait photography session at tifft nature preserve in Buffalo, NY
groom kisses bride on cheek during wedding engagement portrait photography session at tifft nature preserve in Buffalo, NY

As we walked from the forested area of Tifft Nature Preserve to the open fields, the sky started to do some crazy magical things. I knew we were in store for some special light for the main event of this photo shoot. Late summer in Buffalo always tends to produce the most magical cloud formations and sunsets. Lucky for us, this night featured one of the best shows of the season!

Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY
Courtney Woods and John Stevens wedding engagement portrait photography at Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo, NY

That’s all from this one! Many thanks for Courtney and John for hiring me to be their wedding engagement photographer! It was so fun getting to know these two and sharing such a beautiful night with them at City Hall and Tifft Nature Preserve in Buffalo.

If you or someone you know is looking for an engagement or wedding photographer, please have them contact me here!

Niagara Falls Proposal Photography

Madeline and Will’s Wedding Engagement Proposal Photography at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY

This profession takes me to many beautiful places and introduces me to many amazing people. Sometimes those places and people end up being right in my own backyard, so to speak, and help me further appreciate the bounty of beautiful landscapes we have right here in the Buffalo/Niagara region. In this case, helping Will plan his trip to Niagara Falls and Whirlpool State Park for his wedding proposal to Madeline was such a fun opportunity to put together a ton of recommendations for their trip and really reflect on all that’s special about the area. Not to mention, an opportunity for me to create some beautiful photography in one of my favorite places!

Will and Madeline were traveling to Niagara Falls, NY from Chicago, IL. Needless to say, Will figured this would be as good a place as any to propose. And since Niagara Falls felt a little…cliche, he didn’t think Madeline would be fully expecting it (he was right!). Will was naturally imagining Niagara Falls itself as the background for their shoot when we first started planning. As we went back and forth with different ideas, it just didn’t seem to be the right fit for their personalities or the way he visually imagined it though. The hustle and bustle of a tourist destination just wasn’t the right mood.

We eventually settled on one of my absolute favorite places to spend time, Whirlpool State Park. Whirlpool is just a bit down river from the Niagara Falls and features an incredible rocky gorge and some of the most intense rapids in the world! It’s also much quieter than Niagara Falls since it requires a little bit of hiking to get to.

I posed as a tourist/nature photographer and was in the gorge ahead of them. I took pictures of the birds, river and fall foliage, just trying to blend in. Will and I came up with a scheme so he would know exactly where to take Madeline for the proposal. It worked like a charm. I lingered behind them as they took in the scenery, photographing the entire thing.

fall foliage and rapids in Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
seagulls sore among fall foliage in Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
fall foliage and rapids in Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY

There they are! Do you think Madeline was impressed?

bride and groom admire rapids and fall foliage before wedding engagement proposal in Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
bride and groom admire rapids and fall foliage before wedding engagement proposal in Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
bride and groom admire rapids and fall foliage before wedding engagement proposal in Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
groom proposes marriage with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
couples kisses after wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
couple hugs after wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
couple cries after wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
couple cries after wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
couple hugs after wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
couple sits and admires rapids on rock after wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
couple sits and admires rapids on rock after wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
couple sits and admires rapids on rock after wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
bride to be shows off engagement ring after wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY
couple kisses after wedding engagement proposal photography with rapids and fall foliage in background at Whirlpool State Park in Niagara Falls, NY

Doesn’t get much more picturesque than this! Many thanks to Will for trusting me to capture this beautiful moment in their lives and for trusting all my vacation recommendations as well! I had so much fun helping plan their trip (right down to the donuts they ate for breakfast) and am so grateful to have been there to photograph this awesome, transitional time in their lives.

If you or someone you know is thinking about proposal photography in Niagara Falls (or WNY), please reach out here! I’d love to help you scheme and document your proposal for you!

Wedding Proposal at Letchworth State Park

Lisa + Tim

Wedding proposals might just be my favorite events to photograph. This proposal at Letchworth State Park surely added to that sentiment. Wedding proposals are such quick, fleeting events, but ones that completely change the trajectory of ones life. It’s a huge milestone and one that should be documented! I love being part of the preliminary scheming and pulling it off on the day of. It’s so very exciting and warms my heart each and every time.

Lisa and Tim’s proposal plans began with a vacation to Buffalo, NY from Portland, OR. They made plans to spend some time in Buffalo, at Niagara Falls, and here at Letchworth State Park. But this wasn’t going to be just any ordinary getaway. Lisa was planning to propose to Tim while peeping the fall leaves at Letchworth, and asked me to be there to document this milestone!

We planned for a sunrise wedding proposal shoot which meant I was up at 4:00 AM to make sure I was geared up and could make the drive out to Letchworth before the sun peeked out. I was the first one in the parking lot and got to spend a bit of time by myself photographing some scene setters. It was an incredible, foggy fall morning that was just breathtaking!

upper falls with fog during wedding engagement proposal photography session in Letchworth State Park
upper falls with fog during wedding engagement proposal photography session in Letchworth State Park
tourist in yellow rain jacket takes pictures at Upper Falls with fall colors at Letchworth State Park

I watched the crowds as they began to roll in, keeping my eyes peeled for Lisa and Tim. Eventually they wandered to our per-designated spot and spent a few moments soaking in the all the Letchworth State Park scenery.

groom takes photo of bride in front of Upper Falls before wedding proposal at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY

Lisa pulled the engagement ring out of her pocket and had it behind her back for what felt like an ETERNITY! Tim almost touched it a few times as they stood there.

bride proposes to groom in front of Upper Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY

Finally the moment was here and Lisa dropped to a knee and proposed to Tim.

bride proposes to groom in front of Upper Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride proposes to groom in front of Upper Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride proposes to groom and places ring on his finger in front of Upper Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY

He said yes!

bride and groom kiss after proposal in front of Upper Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom hug and laugh after wedding proposal in front of Upper Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY

We spent a little more time wandering to the Middle and Lower Falls for a few engagement photos before I left the newly engaged couple to enjoy Letchworth for the day.

bride and groom pose with foreheads touching after wedding proposal in front of Upper Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom pose with foreheads touching after wedding proposal next to Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom laugh after wedding proposal next to Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom look at each other smiling after wedding proposal next to Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom laugh after wedding proposal next to Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom hug after wedding proposal next to Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom look at eachother smiling after wedding proposal next to Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom laugh after wedding proposal next to Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom pose in front of fall foliage in forest after wedding proposal next to Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom embrace on bridge after wedding proposal in front of Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom embrace on bridge after wedding proposal in front of Falls at Letchworth State Park near Buffalo, NY

What an absolutely epic spot for a wedding proposal right? Big thanks to Lisa for asking me to be part of this special day. I’m so happy to be witness to these important moments in my clients lives, especially on mornings as gorgeous as this!

If you or someone you know is planning a wedding proposal at Letchworth State Park or elsewhere in the WNY region, please have them reach out to me here!

Engagement Photography at Delaware Park in Buffalo

Erin and Michael

Erin and Michael’s engagement photography session at Delaware Park here in Buffalo, NY left my eyes feeling so very happy. Every now and then I hear a photographer complain that they’re sick of working here. Not me. This park is huge and filled with unique new backdrops for photography at every turn. It’s the most popular spot around for good reason!

For Erin and Michael’s wedding engagement session, we utilized Hoyt Lake, the Ivy Bridge, some random trees, and the Lincoln Parkway sections of Delaware Park. One really special part of the design of Delaware Park is the huge variety of trees. Different varieties bloom and fall at different points in the seasons. Whether shooting in early fall or late fall, there is always some beautiful foliage to be found!

wedding engagement photography at hoyt lake in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography at hoyt lake in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography at hoyt lake in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography at hoyt lake in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography at hoyt lake in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography at hoyt lake in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography at Ivy Bridge in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography at Ivy Bridge in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY

This random fiery red tree took us by surprise amid a mostly green and yellow sea of trees, further proving Delaware Park in Buffalo is forever full of new surprises perfect for photography!

wedding engagement photography with fall foliage in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography with fall foliage in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography with fall foliage in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography with winter evergreens in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography with fall foliage in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography in Lincoln Parkway in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography in Lincoln Parkway in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography in Lincoln Parkway in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography in Lincoln Parkway in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography in Lincoln Parkway in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography in Lincoln Parkway in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography in Lincoln Parkway in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography in Lincoln Parkway in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
wedding engagement photography in Lincoln Parkway in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY

That’s all for this one! Can’t wait for Erin and Michael’s 2021 wedding at two of Buffalo’s finest venues, St. Louis Church and the Admiral Room! It’s going to be a beauty!

If you or someone you know is interested in engagement photography at Delaware Park in Buffalo, or elsewhere in the WNY region, please have them contact me here!

Delaware Park Senior Photography

Portraits for Cheektowaga High School Senior, Andrew Lupejkis!

It was such a pleasure getting know Andrew last week during his senior portrait photography session at Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY. Andrew is such an compelling young man with a really diverse set of interests. It takes a special place like Delaware Park, with its own set of diverse backdrops, to match all these interests! Andrew’s a trumpet player, a soccer goalie, a social media director for an NFL Podcast, a boyscout and a future computing security expert! How’s that for a charismatic guy?

We began our session near Hoyt Lake with the lovely Albright Knox Art Gallery gracing the background.

high school senior portrait photography at Hoyt Lake in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY

Andrew plays trumpet through the music program at his high school, Cheektowaga Central, and also performs in the school plays and even jazz band!

high school senior portrait photography at Albright Knox in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
high school senior portrait photography at Albright Knox in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY

Since Andrew is an outdoor enthusiast who enjoys camping and boy scouts, we made use of the wonderful trails that pass through some of the natural areas in Delaware Park.

high school senior portrait photography on Lincoln Parkway in Buffalo, NY
high school senior portrait photography in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY

The Ivy bridge is always a classic spot for senior portrait photography in Delaware Park. It makes such a great backdrop for any type of shoot really!

high school senior portrait photography at Ivy Bridge in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
high school senior portrait photography at Ivy Bridge in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
high school senior portrait photography at Ivy Bridge in Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY

We wrapped up our senior photo shoot with some pictures at Rumsey Field. I often refer to Rumsey as the field of dreams. Delaware Park has many lovely tucked away surprises, and this field is definitely among the best of them. It’s barely visible from the road and is surrounded by big beautiful trees. Soccer fields don’t get much more picturesque than this.

Andrew plays goalie for Cheektowaga Central High School, a position he chose to get out running and ended up really getting in to! I love that!!! Sometimes you just have to show up and good things happen. (:

cheektowaga central high school senior portrait photography at Rumsey soccer field Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
cheektowaga central high school senior portrait photography at Rumsey soccer field Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
cheektowaga central high school senior portrait photography at Rumsey soccer field Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY
cheektowaga central high school senior portrait photography at Rumsey soccer field Delaware Park in Buffalo, NY

That’s it for this one! Many thanks to Andrew (and his parents David and Amy!) for this fun shoot! It was nice getting to know you all!

Best of luck in your senior year Andrew!

If you or someone you know is looking for senior portrait photography in Buffalo, NY or the greater WNY area, please have them reach out to me here!

Knox Farm Senior Portrait Photography

East Aurora High School Senior – Cam Pierrot!

Cam is the second member of the Pierrot family I’ve had the opportunity to photograph senior portraits for, and this shoot lived up to all the expectations set by his sister, Whitney, some 7 years back! Cam is an East Aurora High School senior this year and a member of the football and basketball teams. He also loves the outdoors and so Knox Farm State Park made the perfect backdrop for his senior portrait photography.

Seniors often bring along some props for their portrait session to represent their hobbies and interests. A trumpet, a soccer ball, things like this. Cam brought his girlfriend, little brother and mom. Love it.

Without further ado, a few favorites from Cam’s senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm State Park!

wny senior from east aurora highschool poses for photographer during senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm near Buffalo, NY
wny senior from east aurora highschool poses for photographer during senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm near Buffalo, NY

Cam’s little brother, Max was a lot of fun to have along on the shoot. AND he found a snake!

wny senior from east aurora highschool poses with little brother during senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm near Buffalo, NY
wny senior from east aurora highschool poses for photographer during senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm near Buffalo, NY
wny senior from east aurora highschool poses for photographer during senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm near Buffalo, NY
wny senior from east aurora highschool poses for photographer during senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm near Buffalo, NY
wny senior from east aurora highschool poses for photographer during senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm near Buffalo, NY
wny senior from east aurora highschool poses with girlfriend and mom during senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm near Buffalo, NY
wny senior from east aurora highschool poses with mom and brother during senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm near Buffalo, NY
wny senior from east aurora highschool poses with girlfriend during senior portrait photography session at Knox Farm near Buffalo, NY

Many thanks to this lovely family for trusting me with Cam’s senior portraits. Best of luck with senior year, Cam!

Hope to see at least one of you again in another 7 years when Max is a senior!

If you or someone you know is looking for senior portrait photography at Knox Farm or elsewhere, please reach out here!

Wedding Photography at Hotel Henry in Buffalo

Alexandria and Andrew

I FINALLY had the opportunity to photograph an entire wedding at the incredible Hotel Henry here in Buffalo, NY. When Alex, Andrew and I first started talking about their wedding photography, there were two things that immediately stood out. One, they wanted to incorporate their pet turtle in to their engagement session (yes, that happened). Two, they were getting married in this stunning architectural marvel. Ever since the Hotel Henry opened I waited for this opportunity.

The Hotel Henry was built nearly 150 years ago and originally served as an asylum. The building itself was designed by Henry Hobson Richardson and the grounds by Fredrick Law Olmstead, the same landscape architect who designed Buffalo’s incredible park system (and Central Park!). The building was abandoned in the 1970s and sat vacant for decades, despite its designation as a National Historic Landmark. In recent years, the campus has begun a redevelopment transformation that has been truly remarkable to see. While the legacy of mental health care here in this facility is veiled with some dark history, seeing the space now being used for joyful celebrations of life and love feels like a beautiful renewal. Don’t get me wrong, this place has an eerie vibe at times, but it only adds to the wonder of the place.

Aaaaaanyway, we’re here because Alex and Andrew got married! We began the day in the hotel portion of the complex where the couple got ready in adjacent rooms. The guest rooms at the hotel are beautiful. But one of the BEST parts of this building are actually the hallways. Alex and her bridesmaids took over this beautiful nook for their makeup appointments and breakfast. It was the perfect space to spread out and enjoy the morning. This handsome ring bearer made for quite an entertaining greeter as well!

bridesmaids get makeup done in hallway before wedding at Hotel Henry in Buffalo, NY
bridesmaids laugh at table before wedding at Hotel Henry in Buffalo, NY
bridesmaids chat in large window before wedding at Hotel Henry in Buffalo, NY

Hanging Alex’s wedding gown on this amazing column was no easy task. When I came in the room, the dress was hung on the back of a door and… it just wasn’t going to do. With the help of an ambitious and far taller than me bridesmaid, and a little ingenuity, we got the dress on the glorious column.

brides dress hangs from column in room before wedding at Hotel Henry in Buffalo, NY
wedding invitation and other details sit on chair before wedding at Hotel Henry in Buffalo, NY
bride and bridesmaid laugh in hallway before wedding at Hotel Henry in Buffalo, NY

Meanwhile, second shooter extraordinaire, Jenny, joined Andrew and his groomsmen in their room while they prepared for the day.

groom puts on shoes in room before wedding at Hotel Henry in Buffalo, NY
groom adjusts tie before wedding at Hotel Henry in Buffalo, NY
bestman adjusts grooms vest before wedding at Hotel Henry in Buffalo, NY

EARMUFFS!

We had a whole series of “first looks” with Alex. First up was her bridesmaids, then down the hall to meet her dad, and finally to a different hall where we met Andrew.

One of my absolute favorite things about the Hotel Henry is the ever growing collection of truly good artwork. Every time I visit, there are more pieces on display and it truly feels like an art gallery as much as anything else.

From the Hotel Henry we ventured around the corner to classic Buffalo pub and the site of Alex and Andrew’s first date, Cole’s, for a few quick photos.

From here we wandered over to Buffalo’s beloved Delaware Park, another glorious Fredrick Law Olmstead design, for our wedding party portraits.

Back to the Hotel Henry for our family portraits and wedding celebrations!

During cocktail hour, Jenny and I snuck away with the bride and groom for a few pictures outside the Hotel Henry where we were able to photograph the couple with one of Buffalo’s most iconic buildings as our backdrop. Hotel Henry really is a dream for wedding photography, one of my favorite venues in Buffalo!

Wedding reception time!

That’s it for Alex and Andrew’s wedding photography at Hotel Henry in Buffalo! If you or someone you know is planning a Hotel Henry wedding, please feel free to reach out for more info here!

Many thanks to Alex and Andrew for having us photograph your beautiful wedding! And thank you to all these venues and vendors who helped make the day so great!

Bride Preparation: Hotel Henry

Groom Preparation: Hotel Henry

Ceremony: Hotel Henry

Portraits: Ivy Bridge at Delaware Park

Reception: Hotel Henry

Officiant: Jess Pecoraro of First Comes Love Buffalo

Hair: Elle Air

Makeup Artist: Beauty Atelier

Florist: Blossoms n’ Treasures

Bakery: Mundy Cakes

DJ: Full Swing Sound

Transportation: Status Limo

Second Photographer: Jenny Link Kiefer