Chrisman Studios https://www.chrismanstudios.com Mon, 15 Jul 2019 17:28:44 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://www.chrismanstudios.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/cropped-CS-Favicon-32x32.png Chrisman Studios https://www.chrismanstudios.com 32 32 Samantha&Zev https://www.chrismanstudios.com/blog/weddings/samantha-zev-longboat-key-club-wedding/ Mon, 15 Jul 2019 12:00:26 +0000 http://www.chrismanstudios.com/?p=35387 Samantha and Zev's beach wedding at Longboat Key Club resort.

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Samantha and Zev waited a long time before they found the one that was the right fit. But they both agree it was well worth the wait. They fell quickly and easily in love and have been inseparable ever since.

Family is everything to these two. They chose to get married on the beach at the Resort at Longboat Key Club, in Longboat Key, where Zev’s grandfather lived. Zev’s father, who is a rabbi, was the officiant. Their sunset ceremony was beautiful and filled with tradition, sentiment and love. Afterward, everyone made their way to the Longboat Key Club ballroom for tributes to the couple, a fantastic dinner, and a legendary hora. 

Unfortunately, Zev’s grandfather, who was the reason they chose Longboat Key for their wedding, passed away just a week before the wedding date. But Samantha and Zev looked at the positive side of things. Because the wedding was in Zev’s grandfather’s town, they took many more trips there than they would have normally, for the planning, which allowed them to spend lots of time with him in his last year.

So, in the end, the wedding was also a celebration of Zev’s grandfather, and what he made possible in his life, including creating a family that led to Zev’s very existence, which was everything Samantha had been waiting for. 

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Robert&George https://www.chrismanstudios.com/blog/weddings/robert-george-bora-bora-wedding-at-st-regis/ Wed, 22 May 2019 13:00:34 +0000 http://www.chrismanstudios.com/?p=35268 Robert and George's destination wedding at the St. Regis Bora Bora.

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The order of things. It was a subject that came up frequently at Robert and George’s wedding at the St. Regis Bora Bora Resort.

For example, there is the order of things at a typical wedding: Rehearsal dinner one night, wedding ceremony and reception the next day. But at Robert and George’s island wedding, an impending thunderstorm set to happen right at their ceremony time switched everything around. In the end, we had their wedding ceremony a day early, then celebrated with what was technically the rehearsal dinner. The wedding reception was the following night. And somewhere in between all of that was a jet ski tour, swimming with sharks, and a couple of portrait sessions. And you know what? It was absolutely perfect.

Then there is the order of things in life: Robert and George married while holding sonogram photos of their two babies, due in September. When you are two men using donated eggs and surrogates, and navigating the challenges that come with IVF pregnancy, it’s more important to start the process as soon as possible rather than wait for formalities like being officially married. Having children someday was the top priority for Robert and George. Knowing their babies were already growing and getting stronger, at the very moment they were saying their vows, only made this day sweeter. 

Robert and George’s wedding week in Bora Bora was all about family – biological family, adopted family, chosen family. It was about being strategic to manifest the kind of life you want. But it was also about knowing when to let fate and serendipity alter your perfectly laid plans. I imagine life, for them, will continue to follow that same formula, because Robert and George are two extremely intelligent people who also clearly know how to follow their hearts and trust their guts. 

And it will be absolutely perfect, just the way it is, out of order and everything. 

** Robert and George’s wedding and family story was also featured in a beautiful write-up in the New York Times, which you can see here: New York Times Vows

** One last thing! Before you go, make sure to check out Robert’s sister Kay and Thomas’ wedding at Villa Caletas in Costa Rica, which we photographed almost a decade ago! It’s been so wonderful getting to know this family and seeing so much well-deserved happiness come their way. It couldn’t happen to better people. 

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Michele&Barry https://www.chrismanstudios.com/blog/weddings/michele-and-barry-new-orleans-wedding-at-omni-royal-orleans/ Mon, 08 Apr 2019 13:00:47 +0000 http://www.chrismanstudios.com/?p=35272 New Yorkers Michele and Barry marry at the Omni Royal Orleans in New Orleans.

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It’s always when you aren’t looking that you find the one.

At 52, Michele was happily single and living a very successful life on her own. She wasn’t looking for a partner when Barry stumbled into her path by happenstance.

Over time, she realized “he gave a new dimension to my existence. He gave me the peace and calm I have never had.”

She realized she felt more happiness than she ever thought possible. She realized she had fallen in love. Michele and Barry have a natural chemistry and a mutual respect for one another. And even though they’ve been together more than four years, you’d think they were smitten teenagers.

Michele and Barry, who live in New York, were married in a New Orleans destination wedding at the Omni Royal Orleans. After their candlelit ceremony in the courtyard, Michele changed into a fun reception dress, and they hit the dance floor with their friends and family.  The evening ended with the traditional second line out on the street, and a romantic walk back to their hotel. 

This is one of those weddings, and one of those couples, that will always bring a smile to our faces. Michele and Barry, your love is an inspiration! 

Thank you to Michele Adams of Unique Weddings in New Orleans for flawless planning!

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Suzann&Armin https://www.chrismanstudios.com/blog/weddings/suzann-armin-san-francisco-wedding-at-asian-art-museum/ Mon, 11 Feb 2019 14:00:13 +0000 http://www.chrismanstudios.com/?p=34612 Rules in dating are stupid. We’re glad Suzann was blissfully unaware of them when, as she was walking back to her car after her first date with Armin, she texted him (I mean, they had *just* walked away from each other) to set up their second date.  After those two dates, these two ophthalmologists both […]

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Rules in dating are stupid. We’re glad Suzann was blissfully unaware of them when, as she was walking back to her car after her first date with Armin, she texted him (I mean, they had *just* walked away from each other) to set up their second date. 

After those two dates, these two ophthalmologists both knew they had met “the one.” And everything else just fell into place.

Suzann and Armin were married at the beautiful Asian Art Museum , one of San Francisco’s architectural treasures. It is easy to see the chemistry between Suzann and Armin during their Persian wedding ceremony and reception. All the nerves and jitters beforehand just washed right away when they finally got to see one another at the sofreh. 

The Asian Art Museum provided a grand setting for a celebration that included dancing, entertainment and endless smiles. We’re so happy for these two and proud to have witnessed their first day as husband and wife!

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Bonnie&Ryan https://www.chrismanstudios.com/blog/weddings/bonnie-ryan-tahoe-wedding-at-garwoods/ Thu, 17 Jan 2019 14:00:24 +0000 http://www.chrismanstudios.com/?p=35179 Bonnie and Ryan's wedding at Gar Woods in Lake Tahoe.

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You are such a good person. It was always our hope that, in your search for love and friendship, you would cross paths with other good people, and that those other good people would see in you what we see in you. 

Ryan, what we see in you is pure kindness, selflessness, intelligence, tenacity … someone who has overcome so many challenges in his life but when you meet him all you see is a fun-loving, goofy and carefree person that everyone loves to be around. You take care of people, you look out for people, and you exhibit a level of respect to others that is rare to find these days. We always wondered who you would finally settle down with for life. Whoever it was, we hoped she would appreciate all the wonderful things about you that we do!

We met Bonnie briefly a couple of times through the years, but it was not until the day before your wedding in Tahoe that we really got a feel for who she is. Ben and I breathed a collective sigh of relief and smiled so big. The first thing you notice is how beautiful she is. Her kind, warm smile brings you right in and makes you feel you’ve known her your whole life. The second thing you notice is that she seems a little shy. But you’d be wrong about that. Bonnie is bold! Yet she’s also very easygoing. She rolls with the punches and never seems bothered by anything. She’s confident, sharp and hilarious. She’s not someone who constantly worries how she looks, or whether everything is going OK. She simply floats elegantly through the day, making everyone feel loved and at ease. 

The general consensus was: Wow, Ryan lucked out!!

For those not in the know, Ryan has been a photographer with Chrisman Studios for many years. We knew shortly after meeting him that we wanted to work with him someday. He has photographed weddings and portrait sessions all over the world, and our clients absolutely adore him. Check out his Chrisman Studios weddings here

Bonnie and Ryan were married at Gar Woods Grill & Pier on Lake Tahoe. Ben and I were there as the photographers, as friends, and even kinda-sorta as family members. Bonnie and Ryan surprised us by including us in their Chinese tea ceremony, which brought tears to my eyes. Ben gave a speech at the wedding reception. That brought tears to a lot of people’s eyes. 

The year 2018 was a big year for you, Ryan – you traveled all over the world, you got married, and you bought a house in the Bay Area (which is a feat in itself). You also learned how to build a driveway … something we’ll never know how to do. You never fail to impress us with your ability to learn and to make anything work.

Your wedding reaffirmed what we always hope to be true – that good people will find other good people, team up for life, and inspire others to be good. We can not wait to see what 2019 brings you and Bonnie. We love you both!

 

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Natalie&Jonathan https://www.chrismanstudios.com/blog/weddings/natalie-jonathan-wine-country-wedding-at-highlands-estate/ Thu, 10 Jan 2019 14:00:42 +0000 http://www.chrismanstudios.com/?p=33663 Natalie and Jonathan's Sonoma County wedding at the Highlands Estate.

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Jonathan told us one of the things he loves the most about Natalie is that she doesn’t need him, but that she chooses to be with him. She could do anything, be with anyone, or not even be with anyone at all. And yet she chooses him. Over and over again. 

Natalie is highly successful, a go-getter, a charge-taker, super-driven and accomplished. And on top of all of that, she’s gorgeous, hilarious and adventurous. So yeah, she doesn’t need anyone to fill any gaps in her life. But when you fall in love for real, it’s usually when you weren’t even looking, and for reasons you can’t even articulate yourself. You just know you’re in it. That magnetic draw is a powerful one. 

Natalie and Jonathan are both super Type A’s – accomplished, opinionated, tenacious. They found kindred spirits in one another. They love to travel, and are both big wine-country fans. That is where Jonathan proposed, and it’s where they chose to have their wedding.

They were married at the idyllic Highlands Estate in Sonoma County. Despite a little rain during the ceremony, they had an amazing day, and an outright raucous reception. When you bring in San Francisco’s Prince tribute band, The Purple Ones, you know things are gonna get crazy. And they did. In all the best ways. 

Big thanks to photographer Robyn Navarro for helping Mauricio shoot this one! And Kristen Miller of So Eventful… you are absolutely amazing and make our job very easy! 

 

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Aaron&Jason https://www.chrismanstudios.com/blog/weddings/aaron-jason-downtown-charleston-wedding-at-gibbes-museum-of-art/ Fri, 04 Jan 2019 14:07:26 +0000 http://www.chrismanstudios.com/?p=34745 D.C. couple Aaron and Jason marry in Aaron's hometown of Charleston.

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On my way to Aaron and Jason’s wedding at The Gibbes Museum of Art in downtown Charleston, my Uber driver and I began chatting. I told him how Ben and I were photographing a wedding today for a couple from Washington DC, and how it’s kinda crazy because the groom, Aaron, grew up on my street. 

He said, “Wait, what’s his name?” Turns out my Uber driver, William, also grew up in the neighborhood and knew Aaron from when they were kids. His face took on a wistful expression as he told me how he always knew Aaron would make something of himself, how his mother raised him that way, to be smart and kind and driven. 

Then he said, “So the bride must be from DC then?” I said, “Actually, he’s marrying a man.” This being the Deep South, you can never be sure about anyone’s views on gay marriage, so I waited as he considered this. He said, “This is really making me think. I’ve gotta get my life together!” He was simply impressed, as most people are with Aaron. 

Aaron came from very humble beginnings right here in downtown Charleston, on the same street where Ben and I now live. He has become that super-impressive person who commands a room, who entertains, who loves on everyone, and who everyone loves to be around. As someone pointed out in their wedding speech, Aaron’s story is unlikely: A gay, biracial man from the South, who moved to DC and became a lawyer for Futures Without Violence , which works to end violence against women. 

Jason, who works for the Department of State, is just as impressive, just as kind, and has that same innate desire to care for those around him (during one of our portraits, he couldn’t concentrate because he was worried about his mother feeling OK on this very hot day). And, in that amazing small-world way, even though they met in DC, Jason was also a South Carolina kid. They met through an online dating app. Neither expected anything to come from their first date, but they told us that something was different right away. They felt a deep, instantaneous connection. 

To see Aaron and Jason together is to see the natural flow of love. They move with and around one another as if choreographed – each one taking up where the other leaves off, each one anticipating the next step, the next word, the next move. 

Instead of a first dance, they surprised their guests with a vocal performance on stage with the band. Jason, who is not normally the singer in this duo, got on stage again later in the evening to perform solo, and then hopped on stage yet again to dance with the band. Everyone went wild! 

Aaron and Jason’s wedding day was the same day that the US Senate confirmed Brett Kavanaugh as a Supreme Court Justice. The last speech of the wedding brought up this fact, and urged everyone to come up on stage (everyone who could fit) to show how they will stand beside one another through whatever challenges, hardships and heartbreak we will be facing as a nation. Instead of sadness, it felt more like hope and inspiration.

Love wins again, and it will continue to win, as long as there are people to protect it, and as long as there are people like Aaron and Jason who show us what the best version of it looks like. 

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Allison&Kushal https://www.chrismanstudios.com/blog/weddings/allison-kushal-mountain-house-estate-wedding-in-cloverdale-ca/ Wed, 19 Dec 2018 14:00:28 +0000 http://www.chrismanstudios.com/?p=34974 Indian wedding, Jewish wedding all in same day at Mountain House Estate.

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When Allison and Kushal found one another, things got real. And that was different. Allison felt like she could be herself with him, be honest with him, be real with him… and that changed everything. 

Even though neither had been searching for someone at that point, everything seemed to unexpectedly settle into place… a fun, exciting and easy place… and that was the sign they needed.

Their Cloverdale wedding at the Mountain House Estate included two ceremonies (a Hindu wedding and a Jewish wedding) to honor each of their religions, and a big celebration at the end that was filled with fun, emotional tributes and a heck of a good dance party. They also made sure to include their dog, Simba, who is a full-fledged family member and the source of some of the happiest moments of their lives.

The entire day was punctuated by beauty, laughter, and pure, honest moments. They married one another (twice) with ease and happiness, which is exactly as it should be. We had the best time with these guys, and are also super grateful to their superb wedding planners Blissful Events!

Before you leave, be sure to check out our Jewish weddings and Indian weddings 🙂

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Ivy&Kyle https://www.chrismanstudios.com/blog/weddings/ivy-kyle-denver-wedding-four-seasons/ Tue, 04 Dec 2018 19:45:34 +0000 http://www.chrismanstudios.com/?p=34922 Ivy and Kyle marry at the Four Seasons in Denver.

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Every wedding photographer knows this. There is that moment at the beginning of the day, just before you enter the bride’s getting-ready room, where you have no idea what you’re about to walk into. Will the room be filled wall to wall with people in different stages of hair, makeup and dressing, cords and bags and clothes strewn everywhere? Or will the bride be alone, having her hair curled in silence? Will there be a serious family meeting happening, or a group prayer? Will it be a wild, champagne-laced, pajama dance party? Will there be kids running around, jumping on the furniture? (All of which we have experienced).

When we walked into Ivy’s suite at the Four Seasons, we walked into complete calm, quiet and serenity. Ivy was sitting on the couch with three friends, talking quietly and happily. There wasn’t even any music playing. All was well. VERY well.

This is how Ivy and Kyle are as a couple. They bring one another peace and contentment. And they bring that same feeling to everyone around them. It’s that feeling that everything is going to be all right. It was refreshing, and comforting. 

They were married by the pool at the Four Seasons in Denver, with cocktails outside right afterward. Even during the ballroom reception, which turned into a pretty wild dance party, Ivy and Kyle were the picture of sophistication and grace, occasionally drifting away from one another while they visited and partied with their guests, but always finding their way back. They have so much respect and love for one another, and that showed in every aspect of their day.  

If you’re planning your own Denver wedding, make sure to check out more of our Colorado weddings for inspiration! And definitely check out Kimberly Rose Events whose expert planning made this day so easy, beautiful and fun!

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Anna&Justin https://www.chrismanstudios.com/blog/weddings/anna-justin-berkeley-wedding-brazilian-garden/ Mon, 19 Nov 2018 14:00:27 +0000 http://www.chrismanstudios.com/?p=34889 Anna and Justin's wedding at the Brazilian Garden in Berkeley.

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Anna and Justin saw their wedding as a reunion of sorts. “It’s rare the number of times you can get all the people who are important to you in one room,” Justin told us a few months before his wedding. 

Anna and Justin were married at the Brazilian Garden in Berkeley, a beautiful outdoor space with views of the Berkeley Hills. Afterward, the celebration moved to a restaurant for a big Chinese banquet reception.

For a day that started at 5 am with hair and makeup, had two ceremonies (a Chinese tea ceremony and a Western ceremony), and included an hourlong drive to the reception venue, this crew did not slow down one bit and partied with everything they had until the very end. 

That’s what we love to see in a wedding day!

Here is another Berkeley wedding we photographed at this property: Brazilian Room Wedding

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