Lafayette, California

It’s so refreshing for us to meet couples who do things their own way.

Emily and Jamison got married on a whim in Peru almost two years ago. They were on vacation there, and recently engaged, and somehow all the stars aligned and created a perfect environment and moment for them. Rather than wait to plan a big, traditional wedding, they decided to go ahead and get married right there, in a most unexpected place and time. Emily put on a long white sundress she had packed for the trip, and Jamison wore a red plaid shirt.

They married themselves, sitting face to face on a blanket in a beautiful field perfectly lit by a warm, golden sun just before it dipped down for the night. They had an employee from their hotel take a few photos. She was the only other person there besides them.

When Ben and I arrived at Emily’s father’s house for the long-overdue celebration they had commissioned us to shoot, I stared and stared at one of the photos from that day that was propped up on a table – of Emily and Jamison on their blanket staring into each other’s eyes. They looked so peaceful, and so resolved. It was a moment they could have shared with hundreds of people, dressed to the nines in an expensive venue decked out with lights, flowers and decor. Yet they chose to make this moment solely theirs, in clothes they had casually thrown in a bag, in the middle of nowhere. They had recognized the moment as being right, no matter how unconventional, and they went for it.

As much as we would have loved to photograph their ceremony, I love that they did things their own way. They will always have that precious, quiet space of time reserved only for them. What an amazing memory it must be.

Emily and Jamison’s families wanted them to have a second ceremony, in front of all their friends and family, but in their minds their marriage started that day in Peru, and there was no need to have a normal ceremony back home just for show. So we were called in to photograph a party at Emily’s childhood home to celebrate that marriage.

It was a treat to watch Emily and Jamison reunite with old friends, and to hear them tell their unique story again and again. Emily also serenaded Jamison with a special song she wrote for him on her guitar; and friends and family honored the couple with heartfelt tributes. However one of the most fun parts of the night for us was watching Emily dance. The girl loves to dance, and she’s great at it. She ruled the dance floor all night long with her joyful, carefree spirit.

We’re so happy we got to meet these two, and to get a brief glimpse into their lives. We found them to be a true inspiration, and an important reminder to always follow your heart and to not be afraid of doing things your own way when the moment opens its arms to you.

Authored by: Photographed by: Ben & ErinCategory:  WeddingsDestination:  Lafayette, CaliforniaSetting:  Outdoor Wedding; Backyard Wedding