Real Wedding: Daryen & Markus

A super fun real wedding set in a ghost town, Wild West open air venue.

After a week long hiatus, following a major technical fault on Jenna’s laptop, we bringing gorgeous wedding inspiration back with this beautiful, super fun real wedding. Daryen & Markus were already legally married the day of their ceremony and party, but that didn’t stop the lovely couple from sharing their devotion and love for one another with their nearest and dearest. 

Ross, the couples photographer, tells us more about this gorgeous couple in love…

“These two were actually already hitched before their wedding day. They wanted to buy a house and they had to be married, so they went to the courthouse to say their I-do’s. A few months later they finally got to have a beautiful rustic wedding with family and friends to witness and celebrate with them” Ross

Excited is an understatement when Daryen and Markus told Ross that they had decided on the ghost town in Searchlight, Nevada called Eldorado Canyon. It’s a playground for a photographer, with countless places to take epic photos. The day started off in the Golden Gate at Fremont Street in Downton Las Vegas, which was actually the first ever Las Vegas hotel. How cool is that?!

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The bride made her bouquet from flowers at Hobby Lobby, and after the girls got ready they all headed to Nelson in a party bus for the wedding. The men got ready in the main building, putting on their suspenders and brushing their beards.

“Daryen hid behind one of the sheds while Markus headed to the big rustic barn for their first look. How sweet was his reaction?! The black box in his hand is his gift to his Daryen; a new gun with a love letter written on it. The ceremony took place amongst cactuses, followed by eating and drinking under the stars, a pyramid of Pink Box donuts, the removal of one curious rattle snake and dancing in the old barn” Ross

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Daryen explained that her decor for the day utilised bohemian inspiration but also, a lot of personal touches. She has always been a big fan of old-school floral pattern, lace and the couple were lucky enough to have the perfect place to decorate for their first dance and dance floor.

Most of the deck decor was DIY, from the table lighting to the flower arrangements to the bridesmaids bouquets and the brides bouquet.

“It was our special day and we worked really well together making sure it was perfect for us.” Daryen

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The couple chose laid back outfits, and we love the fact that Daryen didn’t care about her beautiful gown getting a little bit dirty in the mud…just shows that she embraced her day and had a good old time!

“I wanted something that would be elegant and classy, yet allow for a good body movement, and always having been a fan of classic lace my choice was easy. I also wanted something that would complement my skin tone, but conceal my tattoos a little bit, so I opted for a dress that had longer but see-through sleeves. The dress itself had a 12” train and was made by Wear Your Love XO. The flower crown was another personal touch of my own.” Daryen

Markus chose an ensemble which wouldn’t detract from Daryen’s dress but would be bold enough to stand out from the desert landscape.

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When it comes to advice for couples arranging their wedding day, Daryen and Markus’s advice is simple…

“Don’t stress about it! You probably will anyways, I know I did, but it’s about being with the person across from you saying “I do” and not so much about the stuff you know your soon to be hubby is going to get wrong. Live it up, let loose, and have fun! You’ll only get to do it one time!” Daryen

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Supplier Love

WiTW Hearts…Elena Popa

We’re hooked on Elena’s talent for capturing beautiful, unique and detailed weddings.

Showcasing amazing talent is something we are hugely passionate about here at Wed in The Wild…after all, fostering as sense of love, support and kindness is paramount in an industry where love is the order of the day!

Elena first got in touch with us to submit her amazing Lulworth Cove elopement (which you can see here), and we have been hooked on her talent for capturing beautiful, unique and detailed weddings ever since. Covering Surrey and the rest of the UK, she’s such a lovely soul and we’re so excited to follow her journey.

Without further ado, this week we heart…Elena Popa!

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How did you come to be doing what you do?

When I was 14, my at-the-time favourite rock band had a gig nearby where I lived. I asked my dad if he would buy me a point and shoot soap-shaped 4 megapixel digital camera to photograph what was – obviously –  the most important day of my life and since then I never really put it down.

Fast-forward a decade or so, friends and family started to ask me if I would photograph their weddings and I’m so glad they did! Because I certainly would not have planned for this to happen and I would have never found out how much I enjoy shooting weddings! I shot my very first wedding nearly 3 years ago and I got totally hooked.

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I don’t often share this, but I switched to weddings from science – I’m a fully qualified research scientist with a PhD in biology under my belt. It was super scary to make the switch from this polar opposite environment but I know for sure it was the right decision and I’ve not looked back since!

Erm, wow…now that’s an amazing switch!

What aspects of weddings do you love the most?

It’s always such an honour and pleasure to be part of someone’s wedding celebrations. Simply knowing that a couple chose me to come along and document it is an amazing feeling and means a great deal to me.

Overall, it’s a mixture of so many things I love about a wedding day, like getting to know my couples and their stories, hearing about all the things they’re planning for their big day,  witnessing all the emotion, perfect and imperfect moments of a wedding day. And for sure one of the highlights of working as a wedding photographer is getting a happy email from a couple saying just how much they love the photos I delivered to them! Nothing really beats that feeling 🙂

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What is your USP? How do you set yourself apart in the market?

I love working with couples who would rather break free from tradition and do things their own way. I’m a big lover of nature and I try to incorporate wild and dramatic landscapes into my work whenever possible.

The vast majority of people who get in touch with me share the same interests and values – (they are lovers of nature and travel, most likely own at least one dog!), and also comment on the mood in my photos, which I like to describe as atmospheric. 

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Are you keen to or have plans to launch any other products or services?

So funny you should ask! I have been quietly working on a side-show for a while and plan to launch later this year. I won’t say much about it now, aside from the fact that it’s got to do with my interest in hands!

Elena…filling us with all the suspense!

What do you love most about the wedding industry?

I absolutely love the community and how open to collaboration everyone is. I love there are directories for all the different styles of weddings – outdoor weddings, boho weddings, luxe weddings, there’s such a diverse array of styles and it’s so easy to get in touch with like-minded people and create inspirational images. If I were a bride right now I’d be inundated with choice – which I absolutely love.

Describe your ideal wedding?

Intimate, closest family and friends, somewhere in nature, by the sea or in a cabin in the mountains, lots of good food, freedom to do what I want, and sweaty drunk dancing all night long! (we actually had all this at our own wedding except we had to stop the party at midnight).

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Which celebrity wedding style do you love?

I think I shield myself away from the celebrity world to know too much about celebrity weddings, but I do follow Quigley and I’m absolutely in love with her! I love the images of her modelling gorgeous Rue de Seine dresses in crazy cool locations.

We LOVE Quigley, too!

What do you think is the biggest issue in the wedding industry?

I guess it depends whose point of view we’re looking at here…

Personally I wish the older generations would put less pressure on couples getting married to abide by societal norms rather than accepting new traditions. Weddings should be all about the couple and expectations from other people can really take the fun out of wedding planning!

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Also if I had the power to change anything I’d probably pass the law for couples to be able to get married anywhere in England and Wales (not sure where the 2018 Budget discussions led to on this one!).

What does love mean to you…

Selflessness. Compromise. Kindness.

We couldn’t agree more, my love – thank you so much for sharing your story with us Elena!

Real Wedding: Lidia & Edward

A beautiful homage to the simple things in life; Lidia & Edward spent their day, their way.

What I love about today’s real wedding is two-fold…submitted by Kiss In Light Photography; a Bournemouth based duo, Lidia & Edwards wedding feels so warm and inviting, and it was, by and large, completely homespun.

Photographers Gabor and Szandra are experienced in eco-friendly, vegan and boho weddings and had an instant connection with the couple.

“A fellow photographer recommended us to the couple, and we met them personally the next week. We ended up having unlimited personal meetings; celebrating Halloween, spending birthdays together, pizza nights…what more can I say…we genuinely love each other!” Szandra

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Sometimes, it feels amazing just to go back to basics…and this is exactly how Lidia & Edward chose to celebrate their day. From preparing the flowers on the morning of the wedding to setting up their macrame backdrop for the woodland blessing, the couple genuinely made their day their own without compromising on their values.

“We loved the simplicity, the boho vibe, the vegan- and zero waste aspect, all their meaningful decisions…the relaxed and joyful atmosphere they created. This wedding was the first one which gave us personal inspiration. That’s a big thing for us! Szandra

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To get away from the crowds and just be alone, celebrating your love and the commitment you’ve just made must be a wonderful notion…Lidia and Edward did just that directly after their legal ceremony.

They took to the woods carrying their macrame a-frame backdrop and hiked along a trail to find the perfect spot for their blessing; Gabor and Sandra were on hand to capture the ensuing moments; providing the couple with beautiful documentation of their special day.

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We absolutely adore the couple portraits taken in the woods; Lidia’s flower crown and bouquet of wildflowers providing a pretty colour pop against the greenery of the surroundings, and Edward’s suit blending perfectly.

You can feel just how fun-loving and in love this couple are; unafraid to do their wedding their way and determined to enjoy it every step of the way, from the planning stages to the moment the sun set on their special, personal and nature-embracing day.

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Supplier Love

Real Wedding: Rebecca & Michael

Don’t let this summer wedding fool you, it’s full of festive vibes…

It might be a summer wedding we’re showcasing today but there are so many beautiful festive vibes at work here…from the beautiful berry purple of the bridesmaid dresses to the stunning festoon lighting at the venue.

We love Rebecca Carpenter‘s work, so when she got in touch with Rebecca and Michael’s big day, we literally bit her hand off. Rebecca’s work is so honest and natural; her effervescent personality is intrinsic to how she gets the best out of her couples and we can see just how much of a good time they have working with her. And Rebecca and Michael were no exception….

“They were so warm and friendly from the moment they booked; we kept in touch via e-mail and whatsapp! When I showed up on their day it felt like I was meeting an old friend when I met Rebecca. Her family and bridesmaids were so welcoming, fun and positive to be around.” Rebecca

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As you will see from this real wedding, Rebecca is great at capturing both the big picture and the smaller details; from the couples chosen fragrances and stationery, to little details on the wedding breakfast tables. It’s the little things couples often forget, and so this is a really important part of wedding photography.

You may also recognise the Royal Mail ‘something for you’ notecard which went a little Instagram viral when Rebecca posted it onto her grid. Like we said…it’s the little details that make a wedding day truly complete.

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When thinking back to this beautiful real wedding, Rebecca remembers if being one that really stuck out for her in 2018…

“I know this sounds like a cliche but the whole day was just a photographers dream. I loved it all. The weather was incredible, the bride and groom were madly in love, their little girl Bluebell was present, they had the most stunning flowers, there were the beautiful and hilarious bridesmaids, and of course, there was the loveliest church ceremony.” Rebecca

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This couple really did cover all bases with their wedding planning…every aspect of their day was detailed and tailored to their life and their loves…from food and drink, to decor and even the games that they played during the wedding breakfast…

“Rebecca and Michael thought of everything – The Mr and Mrs Game led by the Bride’s brother was created so that all the guests were involved and were able to interact. There were details the bride and groom really thought hard about, such as the strawberries and cream stand, pimp your processco stand, a harpist and a fabulous cheese tower.” Rebecca

We love the table plan…a whimsical fairytale/literary plethora of the couples favourite stories, and each table was themed around the table plan. We also love all the little details around the barn venue, from the festoon lighting, the little paper lanterns and the photo wall showcasing the couples time together.

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When it came to photography, Rebecca had a blast with the couple and their guests.

“I had so many ideas for photographs that day and sometimes you do get resistance from people. However, Rebecca and Michael, her bridesmaids and the wedding guests in general were down for anything and everything! From setting off confetti canons during bridal prep, to jumping fences and going into a field for celebratory photos are some of my favourite moments of that day.” Rebecca

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When it came to challenges on the day, Rebecca explained that the curse of the sharp sunlight struck…every photographers nightmare…

“I think the biggest challenge that day was that the sun was scorching which never really makes for the best photos. Eyes squinting and harsh shadows never make for the prettiest of photos, so I decided to hold off doing the couple portraits until later in the day when the light had settled. It was a bit of a gamble when a wedding is busy and flowing, but I explained to the couple that for the best results we wait until then and I’m so glad they trusted me!” Rebecca

And so are we, because the couple shots and celebratory bridesmaid/bridal portraits are just to die for! Well done Rebecca, and huge congrats to the beautiful Rebecca and Michael.

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Supplier Love

Real Wedding: Manny & Britt

This real wedding is everything elopement should be; cosy, intimate and full of love.

When the amazing Kortni Steltz, of Kortni Maria, got in touch with this elopement, our heads nearly popped off with complete and utter excitement. It’s everything an elopement should be; cosy, intimate, full of love and affection, and of course, those tiny details which make your heart sing.

Manny and Britt are a couple from Brooklyn, New York, and have been together for about 10 years. Never a fan of big weddings, they decided to elope to the Catskills in upstate New York. Britt had followed Kortni on Instagram and loved her style of photography. After their engagement shoot in Central Park with Kortni, Britt and Manny chose her to capture their November elopement.

“After their engagement session I knew that their elopement was going to be my favorite. Their love was so pure and real, and I knew that they were going to show that on their big day. Britt and I kept in touch though text and Instagram message until their elopement. We bonded over choosing pretty wedding details, and our mutual love of the podcast “My Favourite Murder”” Kortni

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Manny & Britt chose a secluded cabin in the Catskills, upstate New York, for their elopement…and boy are we glad they did. Such a sweet little house, with some perfect nooks and crannies. Kortni was able to capture some gorgeous shots of the couple on the porch in the late morning, alongside some chill out shots of them in the bedroom and kitchen…all just adding a little more wedding day flavour to this  unique day.

“I loved how slow we moved, like it didn’t feel all rushed like some bigger weddings can feel.” Kortni

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This chilled wedding was plain sailing for the couple and for Kortni, with the rain being the only challenge…and a very mild challenge at that, as Manny & Britt were completely happy to go outside with Kortni’s clear umbrella.

“Manny and Britt didn’t mind getting a little wet and muddy (like most of my awesome couples) so we braved the rain for an about an hour” Kortni

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From the dress and grooms suit, to the boots, the flower crown and the tablescape details, this creative couple pulled the entire look for their wedding together by themselves. Indeed, the day itself comprised of four people; the bride, the groom, the officiant and Kortni. Manny & Britt can so perfectly say that they did their wedding completely their own way.

For Kortni, she learned that the simpler the wedding the better:

“Manny and Britt made a choice to have their wedding day be just about them, even though it might upset some people. I know they wouldn’t change how they did things for the world though because it was so perfectly intimate and special.”

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In true Wed in The Wild style, we asked Kortni her views on the meaning of love…

“Love is a choice and it is unconditional. It means waking up every day next to your best friend and choosing them. Choosing to serve them, help them, encourage them, learn with them, and stay with them through thick and thin.”

I don’t think we could say it better ourselves. Congrats to Manny & Britt!

Real Wedding: Kelly & Erik

The attention to detail and raw emotion at this perfect destination wedding will be sure to capture your heart.

Wow. Just wow. That was our first reaction to seeing this beautiful real wedding shot by Anna Hayes of Hazography. Set in Roatan, Honduras, amongst palm fronds, birds of paradise and a whole lotta love, the attention to detail and raw emotion at this perfect destination wedding will be sure to capture your heart.

Anna explains more…

“I never met Kelly and Erik in person until I flew to Honduras for their wedding. This was my first destination wedding so I was totally nervous that it was too good to be true – that they were too good to be true. Then I met them and we were instant friends. They invited my boyfriend and I to their welcome BBQ and we all went out for drinks afterwards. It was a freakin’ blast. The whole weekend we were treated like family. If all my clients could be like that, I would be in photographer heaven.”

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“The love. It was all there. Everyone in the bridal party was so stoked to be there. They helped the bride with everything. Hell, they helped me with everything – including removing a closet door to get sweet photos with it. The bride is 100% fluent in Spanish as it is her second language, but in the midst of the wedding day rush, she had ‘bride brain’ so she just could not find the words! So, her girls took up the slack and helped her communicate with the vendors. It was such a show of love.”

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Anna describes how the day went swimmingly for the most part…there weren’t any photography challenges in terms of lighting, posing or otherwise. However, she did experience one of the most heart-stopping moments we think a photographer could ever experience! Whilst she was backing up some of her SD cards, her case slipped out of her pocket!

“All the SD cards scattered on the slotted deck flooring! The groom was right there freaking out along side of me. Luckily, none of the cards slipped through the cracks, but Erik was ready to take a drill to the floor if need be”

Could you imagine having to engage in a little light DIY on your wedding day!

Anna’s advice…put a rubber band around your SD case so it doesn’t click open on accident!

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Kelly, Erik and Anna took a walk into the Honduran jungle for some beautiful, jaw dropping couple shots. Despite the blaring heat and after being eaten alive by mosquitos, Erik took Kelly’s hand and said “we have jungle photos, baby”. I mean, total goals right there.

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Each wedding you work on as a supplier has it’s challenges and it’s lessons, and Kelly and Erik’s wedding was no different for Anna..

“I learned what to look for in an ideal couple. In the creative world, we are always painting this picture of our “ideal couple”. Who would they be? What would they do? How would they act? Well, I managed to find them on my first destination wedding. Kelly and Erik treated me in the absolute best ways and I am so grateful they chose me to capture their wedding”

We’re so glad they chose you Anna, and so glad you chose Wed in The Wild to showcase such a beautiful day!

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Real Wedding: Cody & Tyler

Cody & Tylers real wedding is the epitome of what your wedding should be…one that follows no rules.

Today’s real wedding is the epitome of what your wedding should be…one that follows no rules. One that is filled with love and emotion, is packed full of your friends and family. One that embraces hiccups and plain sailings (because thats how real weddings go) and ultimately, one that defines you as a couple regardless of what everyone else is doing. 

I love seeing two people in love. There is nothing more vulnerable and raw, so when photographer Heather Woolery got in touch with the gallery from Cody & Tyler’s Idaho wedding, I was instantly hooked.

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Nestled in the Idaho mountains, by the Clearwater River, Cody & Tyler celebrated their marriage at River Dance Lodge surrounded by their nearest and dearest. With such stunning scenery, the couple chose to simplify their wedding.

Heather explains more…

“Every couple teaches me something and always touches my heart. Cody and Tyler are such a fun couple, and from Cody’s veil that Tyler had picked out for her at a renaissance fair earlier this year, to the table filled with the brides vintage camera collection, their day just highlighted that weddings are personal…who cares what trends may or may not be going on. If you love it, then do it”

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After meeting Cody over drinks at a coffee house, Heather knew she’d love to capture their special day. Their day was filled with personal touches which Heather loves to capture…after all, it’s usually the small things you forget after the event…

“I loved how the bride and groom had their hand and personality in every aspect of their wedding. They celebrate his Minnesota and her Idaho roots with their décor and table centrepieces”

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No real wedding would be the same without some challenges, and Cody and Tyler’s day was no different.  The ceremony ran faster than the food caterer had planned, so everything ended up being delayed. However, the couple just filled the time with toasts, which made everyone cry, and then kicked up the dance floor till dinner was ready.

But thats just how it goes. Some weddings have little hiccups, some weddings have big ones. But at the end of the day, when all is said and done, its about the couple tying the knot and celebrating their love.

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We always love to ask the photographer their thoughts on love. And Heathers response was very candid and to the point…

“Love is simply the most complex emotion and bond that anyone can have. It is the most honest emotion because it’s one of the heart.”

We couldn’t have said it any better ourselves, Heather.

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Heather is a an all-natural light documentary styled wedding photographer, based in Northern Idaho. She travels locally, nationally and internationally to shoot her speciality; smaller weddings and elopements for the wild at heart.

Supplier Love

Photographer | Heather Woolery

Caterer/Beer | Rants & Raves Brewery

Venue | River Dance Lodge

DJ | Sydney Walker

Real Wedding: Madison & Austin

Woodland vibes for this real wedding, featuring some really cool details and a wonderfully loved up couple!

All the feels for the sweetest couple on the blog this evening. Madison and Austin’s wedding features so many pretty little details, and was shot by the lovely and equally talented Brynna of Three Birds Photography

The couple had the most perfect, intimate wedding surrounded by close friends and family. When Madison contacted Brynna about photographing her wedding, she told her of her plans for a small backyard wedding. She also expressed an interest in wanting to shoot images of just her and Austin at a separate location in the woods. For Brynna, it was the perfect brief…

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Brynna explains more…

“Madison and Austin have such a loving and warm connection that shows in every picture. I loved every detail of their day! Madison’s dress, the flower details in her hair, the groom’s entire outfit, the flowers by Centre Floral – all of it. The most unique and beautiful part about the day was Madison’s tattoo of the moon phase of their wedding night. Their fun and relaxed personality made the day and the photographing experience so amazing and special. Madison and Austin’s day still inspires me when planning sessions and photographing other couples to this day – a wedding I’ll always treasure!”

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Brynna has actually known Madison since they were children, having grown up in the same county, but were never friends. However, Madison began following Brynna when she began her photography venture, and they began to form a bond. She shot their engagement photos in downtown Nacogdoches, TX in different abandoned spots. Madison’s unique personality really clicked with Brynna’s style and every detail of their wedding really spoke to her.

Match made in heaven, it sounds like!

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The wedding took place in Madison’s aunts backyard. It was a very short ceremony and Brynna and the couple left right after to take pictures in Sabine National Forest. When the pictures were taken, the wedding party convened in an old community house for the reception, where the food and decorations were made by family and friends. All so simple, but oh so perfect.

Brynna recalls that she “learned that it is better to just do what you want on your wedding day, because it is in fact YOUR day! Madison and Austin did exactly what they wanted, pictures, decorations, and all and it was perfect.”

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Question: Brynna, what does love mean to you?

“Love means being completely authentic and 100% yourself with your partner. Raw honesty is love. Acceptance of faults and flaws is love. Quality time is love. You don’t need expensive dates, cards, and money to show your love. You just need each other. Time spent watching a movie together, making cookies together, dancing to “your” song, or just being beside each other, not even having to say a word. Any day spent together.  That’s love to me.”

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Brynna provides photography in a style which shows authenticity and joy. She is East Texas based but is willing to travel both within the US and overseas, and she loves to shoot weddings, portraits, and lifestyle sessions. Her boyfriend partners with her for weddings as a second shooter and videographer.