I had a blast documenting Takeya and Shawn’s wedding at Sonnenberg Gardens in Canandaigua, NY. Just like all weddings, Shawn and Takeya’s big day was special…but this couple was even more special because Takeya and Shawn have become my friends! We connected in many ways and I even found out, after they booked me as their wedding photographer, that Takeya works with my brother-in-law – they both serve in the Air Force! Because of all of this, I was definitely looking forward to capturing Takeya and Shawn’s beautiful memories. The couple had a magical wedding, surrounded by friends and family, and there was no shortage of love and laughter.
As a wedding photographer, getting to know my couples and the story of how they met is something I always cherish. It’s truly wonderful when I can incorporate elements from their love story into the photos we create and capture their connection on camera.
Takeya and Shawn have a modern-day love story. At first, the two were simply part of the same friend circle while attending college together. Years later, Shawn decided to take a chance and reached out to Takeya on social media. To everyone’s surprise, Takeya announced that “shy Shawn” had messaged her. And now they’re saying “I do”. That’s a definite happy ending that makes you believe that whenever love shows up, you say yes!
I started off the day with so much joy and energy by capturing Takeya’s getting-ready moments. Takeya was glowing and smiling throughout her preparations, while her bridesmaids showered her with love and laughter. These behind-the-scenes moments make my heart so full, and it is always such a pleasure to capture them. Photographing Takeya’s beauty and her gorgeous wedding dress and veil, along with her beaming bridesmaids, was nothing short of magical.
There couldn’t have been a more perfect venue than Sonnenberg Gardens for Takeya and Shawn’s fairytale wedding and their special day was everything they dreamed of and more! Their ceremony took place outdoors, in the sunshine, and amidst the lush green of the gardens. They stood in front of a big, beautiful circle of white flowers, flanked on either side by stone urns of flowering plants.
Takeya was a vision in white as she walked down the aisle to marry the love of her life. All eyes were on her, and her beauty was undeniable. Meanwhile, Shawn stood tall and handsome at the altar in his gray suit. Shawn and Takeya exchanged heartfelt vows and everything came together so perfectly as they said I do. The couple sealed their marriage with a kiss and also jumped the broom at the end of their ceremony with everyone cheering them on! It was such an awesome moment.
Takeya and Shawn’s portraits together were an absolute dream. We ventured around Sonnenberg Gardens looking for perfect spots to capture their happy moments. There were so many backdrops to choose from at the venue, from Grecian-style architectural elements to tall trees and greenery. Takeya and Shawn were such naturals in front of the camera, which made my job easy. As I continued taking pictures of the two of them laughing, hugging, and sweetly embracing each other, it left no doubt in me that this couple was meant to be together forever! My favorite moment from the wedding was when we took the bus to take photos by Canandaigua Lake. Everybody on the bus was so excited that the couple had just married and the music was blasting. Takeya was up dancing and it was so much fun!
For their wedding reception, Shawn and Takeya planned a tented setup that opened to the outside. Inside, the warm yellow lights decorated the space beautifully. The speeches by their loved ones were heartwarming, and the DJ later took over with a powerful half-hour mix with one song every minute played from when they were in college. The dance floor was PACKED and everyone had a blast. Takeya also had a customized Bruce Springsteen cake made for Shawn – now that’s love!
Shawn and Takeya – I absolutely love your kindness. You two have become my true friends and I look forward to seeing you at MY wedding! So, thank you for choosing me as your wedding photographer. It was an honor to document one of the most amazing days of your life. I wish you all the happiness in the world and look forward to capturing your future milestones.
If you are looking for a wedding or elopement photographer, you can send me an email or contact me here, and I will get back to you. You can also head to my website for more details and see more of my work on Instagram and Facebook.