This couple here holds a very special place in my heart, so grab a snack, folks, this blog is going to be kind of long, maybe a little sappy.
The first time I met Sharron was 16 years ago. She made me so incredibly nervous because Sharron is probably the exact opposite of me when it comes to expressing ourselves: Where I am extremely animated, vociferous, overly chatty, sometimes emotional but still have a hard time expressing my true feelings at times… Sharron is very reserved, quiet, and buttoned-up, with one hell of a poker face. For extroverts like me, meeting someone like Sharron confounds my brain, but once I got to know her better, I found that she was funny, social, supportive, and just all-around fun to be around.
We’ve seen each other through different chapters of our lives. Moves, school, career changes, and even some bad relationships at the beginning of our book together. We’ve managed to keep in touch through the miles and years, and even developed a hobby interest together: photography.
Often times, people ask me why I shoot Nikon. Want to know why? Because I started on Nikon. Want to know why I started on Nikon? Because Sharron had a Nikon. The only photography classes I’ve taken were with Sharron. The start of my photography interest PERIOD was WITH Sharron. Anyone around here remember Deviantart? Anyone? Oh god, I kind of hope not. Well, that was one of the first online platforms to share photography with and where the two of us kind of learned to express ourselves (though in those years pretty badly) through our cameras. Though, I have to admit: She had much better subjects to use which were her amazingly gorgeous children.
Hell, I learned to shoot MANUAL with Sharron! I think back to our days sitting outside of a night class with our manual film cameras, both kind of lost in our lives and no idea of what the future brings for us and where our lives are now, and it’s pretty overwhelming what the years have brought for us.
For Sharron, it’s brought Jeremy. And oh, how much happiness it brings me to see them together, I really can’t say. How much happiness they bring each other, how much happiness I’ve watched grow over the years from afar on social media and from conversations with Sharron. So when Sharron told me they were getting married in Vegas, even though I never had even MET Jeremy, I was OVER-THE-MOON. I wanted to absolutely be a part, both as a friend and a photographer, so I was elated that Sharron asked me to come and be both of those things. 🙂
So, forgive me, but this blog is going to have FOUR different sections. I mean, I can’t really just divide up all of this love into four different blogs, they all go hand in hand!
First is just the obligatory Vegas shots. I try to be pretty strict with myself about NOT bringing my camera along for sight seeing or vacation/family time, but this time I at least had an excuse: I needed it to blog for the wedding, right? To be completely and brutally honest, I didn’t think I would enjoy Vegas. I’m not a gambler, I’m not much of a drinker, and I can’t say that “flashy” is my vocabulary when talking about things I love. But Vegas was actually a pretty magical little experience. My mother came along for the ride, and we had a pretty dang good time while there.
Honestly, I think it’s safe to say I’d love to go back!
One thing I really, really wanted to do was experience the desert and the scenery that Nevada has to offer. A lot of people don’t even realize how beautiful Nevada really is or even care to think about what is offered outside of Vegas. After expressing to Sharron that I really wanted to do a shoot with them in the desert, we started looking around on maps for areas to visit. We decided on Red Rock Canyon at sunset the day before the wedding. We kind of considered this almost like an engagement shoot in the Nevada desert.
Let me tell you: This Texas girl doesn’t know much about scenery like this, it’s totally foreign to me. AND IT’S GORGEOUS. Why, oh why can’t we have such beautiful landscapes in Texas?! And look at all this light, all this awe-inspiring landscape… at first we thought the insane 25mph winds out there were going to destroy any idea we had for a shoot, but luckily the wind definitely worked in our favor.
The next day was time for the wedding. Now, let me try to explain something that’s kind of hard to put into words. Wedding day when you are a parent is a bit different than a normal wedding day. For me, as a parent and also a photographer, I feel like it holds little pieces of secret, simple magic throughout the day. It’s sprinkled here in there in moments like Isabella watching her mom get all dolled up. Isaiah having his bow-tie put on by his dad. Little 11-year-old Isabella being brought to happy tears after the wedding vows are finalized and her dad comforting her in his arms. Or the moment that Isaiah (now at that fun boy teenager stage where they decide emotions are dumb and caring is uncool) looks at his mom and smiles at her so tenderly as he helps to walk her down the aisle.
Sharron kept to referring to her wedding as “my small wedding” because it was intimate and didn’t have tables with 5 ft tall centerpieces and a bridal party of 10. But really? Her wedding was really, really big in so many ways. Many of us were left in tears after and were so grateful to have been a part of it all.
And, uh, side note: Am I the only one that kind of wants to just recreate this wedding and Sharron’s flawless vintage look and pinup hair and get married again?! SIGN. ME. UP.
After the wedding, we had THE MOST EXCITING PART OF THE ENTIRE DAY–okay, no, the wedding itself was the most exciting, but as a PHOTOGRAPHER this part of the day literally had my stomach full of butterflies and brought a bit of giggly euphoria that happens when you know you are in the presence of epicness. One of Sharron’s main WANTS of this entire trip was THIS place. The Neon Boneyard at the Neon Museum in Vegas.
Holy. Crap. A-MA-ZING.
It’s the place where the most iconic Vegas signs go after they are taken down. There are so many lights, so much color, so much classic Vegas just put all into a small space, it’ll make your head spin! So, so much fun shooting here with these fun people (even the kids had a blast shooting!) So, SO much epicness going on here, I just don’t think I can describe how happy my heart is that I am able to deliver exactly what Sharron had in mind when it comes to shooting here. Between her dress, the colors, the kids’ clothes and the way that Jeremy makes her laugh… I kind of wanted to ask the Neon Museum if we could just go ahead and spend the rest of our trip camped out there between the Casino signs.
And if you guys haven’t looked or noticed yet, I really want you to pay attention to Isabella’s awesome shoes. 😉
So what do you guys think? Is it magic or is it magic? Which part is your favorite? I’m really dying to know because it was so, SO hard for me to even pair down this blog to these images shown here!
Thank you, thank you to Sharron and Jeremy and Bella and Isaiah. Thank you Sharron for always being an awesome friend, thank you for the invitation, and thank you for allowing me to be a part of your big day not just as a photographer, but as a friend of over 15 years. I love your family and I’m excited to follow along with all the chapters to come.