JP + Vanessa at Historic Stone Hall

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JP + Vanessa at Historic Stone Hall

I was planning a trip to Colorado about the same time I received an email from bride-to-be Vanessa. JP and Vanessa, now married, met and live in Colorado. Coincidence? Vanessa is from Nashville and they would be getting married at the Historic Stone Hall. It's a beautiful venue; especially for intimate weddings. Vanessa conveyed that their wedding would be small with only their dearest family and friends surrounding them. I loved the sound of everything they had planned and that she wanted a journalistic feel to the day. That's truly my favorite way to capture weddings.  

My favorite part during the wedding may have been when Vanessa said 'vows' to JP's young daughter, Paley. After the wedding, guests were treated to one of the best hot chicken venues Nashville has to offer, Hattie B's. In fact, JP got so excited when Hattie B's arrived that he asked me to stop their portraits to take a photo of the Hattie B's airstream pulling up. =) That's dedication to a favorite restaurant. The celebration only got better when The John Tomlin & Company Band started playing. They were AH-MAH-ZING! If you love or even like Bluegrass then you gotta hear them! My favorite part of the night was when Vanessa laid old quilts on the ground for guests to sit on. The quilts were sewn by her grandmother. As a quilt maker (ok I've only made two) and lover of quilts, this made my heart swoon. I wish them a lifetime of happiness!

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Hair and Makeup - Amy Lynn Larwig + Associates

Wedding Dress - J. Crew

Shoes - SJP Collection

Food - Hattie B’s & 5 Daughters Donuts 

Venue - Stone Hall, Hermitage TN

Ring -  Ritani

Flowers - Bloom on Belmont Avenue

Beer -  Yazoo & Blackberry Farm

Bartender -  Private Events Bartending

Band -  John Tomlin & Company 

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Scenic Colorado Wedding Venues (Part 2)

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Scenic Colorado Wedding Venues (Part 2)

I am as excited to deliver 'part 2' of my Colorado Wedding Venues travel to you as I was to deliver 'part 1'. If you haven't seen 'part 1', you can find it HERE. This portion of my trip took me up into the beautiful Rocky Mountains and then south to Colorado Springs. The views from these locations are beautiful which means that your wedding photographs would be too. To say it was an adventure is putting it mildly! A hint of advice... if you are thinking about traveling up into the mountains, a reliable rental car and a thick sleeping bag should be high on your priority list. I almost needed to implement my girl scout camping survival techniques. Honestly, there's never a dull moment wherever I go and every trip is an adventure. I wouldn't have it any other way. =)


Strawberry Creek Ranch

Grandby, Colorado was one of my favorite places in Colorado and that's probably why I really love this venue. The views at Strawberry Creek Ranch are absolutely breathtaking. The  ranch sits on 300 acres right below the continental divide. It's a family-owned, working cattle and horse ranch. The pond's reflections during fall were incredible. I could visualize a beautiful bride's reflection in that pond. Plus, the bridge and waterfall on the side of the pond are perfect for those couple portraits. If you are getting married up in the mountains, then this venue is a must!

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How adorable is the bridesmaids' cottage?!?!

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The view is incredible!

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Blackstone Rivers Ranch

Blackstone is new in the wedding venue scene and they are doing things right! This venue is located in Idaho Springs, just thirty-five minutes west from Denver. I would definitely say 'rustic elegance' defines the style at the Blackstone Rivers Ranch. The venue offers luxurious amenities while keeping its' feel of being surrounded in nature. One of my favorite features about the venue is the area along the stream for guests to congregate. There is a huge fire pit, lounge chairs, rocking chairs and outdoor heaters for chilly evenings. The highlight for a photographer is the wooden swing that hangs from the bridge. I would definitely want to capture some bridal portraits there.

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The bride and bridesmaids' room

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The groom and groomsmen' room

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FLYING HORSE RANCH

One the second to last day of my trip, I headed south to Colorado Springs. This is where I would tour Flying Horse Ranch. The ranch sits on 1,400 acres of what is called 'The Front Range' of Colorado consisting of rolling grasslands. The venue has two different wedding location options. There's the ranch house ballroom and/or the Barn, which is my favorite. Personally, I'd utilize both spaces. The ranch has an amazing outdoor area for guests to congregate under the starry sky. The perfect photograph of the bride and groom will probably be at sunset out in the grassland.

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The bride and bridesmaids' getting ready area

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The barn has two levels allowing for an on-going reception upstairs while others dance the night away downstairs.

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Deer Creek Valley Ranch

The fog was just starting to lift when I arrived at  Deer Creek Valley Ranch in Bailey, Colorado. The temp was 36 degrees Fahrenheit and it was windy, but I was ready to tour this beautiful one of a kind wedding venue. I was greeted by some beautiful horses roaming the range. The barn was originally built in 1865 and it has been totally renovated. The biggest hidden secret to the barn can be found downstairs. It's the man cave and OMG it's AH-MAH-ZING! Once your man sees this space, he'll probably want to sign on the dotted line. haha! Most couples choose one of two locations for their wedding. There's the Lakeside Gazebo and the Bridge Meadow. The Bridge Meadow typically allows for amazing mountain views in the backdrop, but the fog was very thick during my visit, so the mountains could not be seen. Nonetheless, a gorgeous place to marry the love of your life. The Lakeside Gazebo holds my favorite feature and there is a canoe to row out to a little island in the middle of the lake. There's an antique swing in the middle where photos can be taken. Yes, please!

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The upstairs loft is perfect for extra reception seating or your reception dance.

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The Barn at Evergreen

After I left Bailey, I drove to The Barn at Evergreen. The closer I got to Evergreen, the denser the fog became. I literally could not see the venue from the road, but I'm so thankful I finally found it because this venue is a true gem. The Barn was assembled from five other barns and everything in the barn is up-cycled. The stained windows came from an old church that was going to be torn down. This venue is beyond unique. In addition, the venue is surrounded by wildlife because the barn sits within a park with lots of wild game. There are several antique artifacts throughout the property and ponds as well. 

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The Barn At Raccoon Creek

On my last day in Colorado, I toured an all encompassing wedding venue located in Littleton - just south of Denver. The Barn At Raccoon Creek sits on a golf course and the grounds are well kept and lush. This could be a big hit with your bridal party if you have a golf enthusiast or two. The string zip zag lights make the common lawn between the barn and bridal house feel inviting and party worthy. This is where'd I'd have my dance floor at with the band off to a side. I'm ready to get down and boogie when you are. =)

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Scenic Colorado Wedding Venues (Part 1 of 2)

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Scenic Colorado Wedding Venues (Part 1 of 2)

I am particularly excited for you to read this blog post! It's been a work in progress (the vision, venue research, actual trip, capturing and editing photos) for over a year and it's finally come to fruition. It all started with Instagram. Little fun side note... the reason I bought my first iPhone, the 4s, was because I wanted to have an Instagram account. Last year, I started noticing a lot of wedding photos with stunning mountains, wild prairies, horse ranches and overlook views. Quite often, I would click on the photo location and Colorado would be the state. It was then and there that I decided to personally visit some of these amazing wedding venue locations I saw. After several months of researching Colorado wedding venues, it was time to select the venues I wanted to visit. In September, I flew from Nashville to Denver, rented a car and drove and drove... and drove. I got the opportunity to meet amazing people, visit gorgeous and unique venues and provide potential bride and grooms with amazing Colorado wedding venue options. In my opinion, these are some of the most beautiful and unique wedding venues Colorado has to offer. 


 

Platte River Fort

Platte River Fort is located in Greeley, Colorado. Their location is about an hour from Denver and/or Cheyenne. This beautiful venue sits on 235 acres with long horns roaming the property. It reminds me of the old west with a ton of character. One of my favorite features about the property is that it sits along the Platte River. You can choose to have your ceremony next to the river, in the big barn or on the lawn in front of the fort. Please promise me we'll do your wedding photos by the river with longhorns in the background.

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Milston Well Farm

Milston Well Farm is located in Longmont, Colorado. My heart swooned the moment I pulled into the driveway because I felt as if I was pulling up to my dream house. The farm is a privately owned residence. The Shutze Family has done a remarkable job renovating this property while keeping the authenticity of the original farm. 2018 will be their second year operating as a wedding venue. The bride and bridesmaids' quarters are in the cutest little house on the property. (pictured below) The groom and groomsmen's quarters are a renovated camper behind the farm house. The original barn can be used for the ceremony or reception. The line of mature trees behind the property creates a wonderful backdrop for bride and groom portraits. Mountains sit off in the distance. Unfortunately, it was extremely overcast and cloudy during my trip, so the mountains weren't visible. One of my favorite features about Milston is that the farm has chickens (can you say farm fresh eggs?), two donkeys, two goats and a dog. It won't be long before this intimate wedding venue is booked years in advance. 

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Wild Basin Lodge

Wild Basin Lodge is a luxurious and secluded mountain wedding venue. The views from the property are breathtaking. I arrived at the peak of fall when the aspen trees were popping with their bright yellow color. The lodge nestles into the Rocky Mountains foothills. Before touring the inside of the property, I had to explore the outside amenities. There are two outside location options for your ceremony. As a photographer, you cannot go wrong with either option. The first is next to the lodge and alongside the river. The bride and groom stand amongst the pines and aspens while their guests sit on tiered-steps sloping upward. The pop of color was so vibrant that I would highly suggest the riverside location for a late summer or fall wedding. The second location is about a ten-minute walk over a bridge and alongside pines and aspens. You and your guests are truly among God's majestic nature. One of my favorite details about Wild Basin Lodge is that there are so many options for photographs. It's a wedding photographer's dream and I would love to capture your wedding there.

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a little trail off the beaten path to get photos captured

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C LAZY U RANCH

I first learned about C Lazy U Ranch from a friend I befriended on Instagram. She lives in Colorado and use to work at the ranch. The Ranch is located in Grandby, Colorado and mainly books spring and fall weddings. The summer is filled with families experiencing the dude ranch first hand. Upon arriving, I was greeted by some beautiful horses which I had to stop to photograph and love on. C Lazy U Ranch is an all inclusive working dude ranch since 1919. Weddings can take place in a number of areas, but my favorite is pictured below overlooking the river and ranch. Photographing your wedding would be the perfect reason for me to return to the ranch.

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my favorite ceremony location overlooking the river

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Are you getting married in Colorado or planning a destination wedding there? Do you need help finding a venue or wedding photographer? I'm here to help and would be honored to capture your wedding. Drop me a line on the 'contact' page at Darcy Ferris Photography.

This is part 1 of 2. Other venues will be featured in part 2.

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Chad + Kim at The Antrim

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Chad + Kim at The Antrim

Chad + Kim had so much beauty in their day including the prettiest sunset I had seen all year. Their first look and embrace prior to the wedding were EVERYTHING! Plus, Kim brought her four-legged child who melted everyone's hearts. The little pooch kept sitting on his mama's dress during the ceremony. A total heart overload. My favorite part may have been that Kim's Grandfather performed the ceremony. 

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A huge thank you to Caitlin Steva for asking me to assist her with this wedding.

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Andrew + Hannah at Mint Springs Farm

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Andrew + Hannah at Mint Springs Farm

Andrew + Hannah might be my favorite northern wedding couple I've photographed in a southern setting. Hannah is from my home state of Wisconsin. GO PACKERS! Andrew is from Minnesota. Boo Vikings... j/k. They met at church and the rest is history. They choose one of the prettiest venues just south of Nashville, Mint Springs Farm. Hannah surprised her dad by sewing an inscribed heart on the back of his tie that read "You will always be my first love". 

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I want to thank you Chelsey Somohano for asking me to collaborate on this wedding! 

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The Close Homestead

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The Close Homestead

Paul and I graduated high school together. He married Natalie (a beautiful woman) and they have four precious daughters. I was honored to capture their family one sunny July afternoon. Sierra, the oldest daughter, is the horse whisperer. Britain is the baker. I think if I would have stayed any longer, she would have whipped up a pie. Paige is the farmer. Her current specialities are chickens and collecting eggs. Saylor, the baby, is working on crawling, but I suspect she'll be an interior decorator like her mama. Paul headed out to saddle up the horses while Natalie and the girls finished getting glamoured. I cannot begin to tell you how much fun I had capturing this family and the horses on their beautiful homestead.

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Dalton + Allison's One Year Anniversary Session

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Dalton + Allison's One Year Anniversary Session

I met Allison and Dalton a little over a year ago when I fostered Conrad, the sweetest pit bull. Conrad was adopted by Allison and Dalton because they fell in love him. They truly have the sweetest hearts and are rescue dog people.... a GREAT reason to be friends! I was beyond honored to capture photos celebrating their one year anniversary as husband and wife! Woot! Woot! They are the couple who never stops laughing and their love for one another is so radiant and over flowing! I would learn that Dalton has some mighty fine dance moves that I'm pretty sure he's been busting at the seams to share. =)

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I told Allison to tell Dalton something sexy..... um, kinda wonder what she said!

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Those are some strong dance moves! It was Saturday Night Fever all over.

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Eric + Lauren Say "I Do" at Meadow Hill Farm

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Eric + Lauren Say "I Do" at Meadow Hill Farm

Love wins when a man and a woman are perfectly created for one another. That's Eric + Lauren. Any time spent around these two love birds and you'll see two puzzle pieces that fit together perfectly. Their eyes show respect for one another. Love for one another. Compassion for one another. Grace for one another. Gratitude for each other. 

Towards the end of Eric + Lauren's reception celebration, a film crew arrived for taping. Country entertainer, Kelsea Ballerini, needed a real life wedding firework exit to put in her upcoming video, Legends. Eric + Lauren were the lucky couple chosen. Woot! Woot! After three or four exit runs, the video crew had what they needed and so did we as photographers. I cannot thank Chelsey Ssmohano enough for asking me to assist on this beautiful wedding! What a fun time we had together. In case you're interested, at the :30 second mark of the music video, you can see the real wedding exit. You'll see Chelsey running backwards getting photos. I'm kneeling on the ground shooting up towards the couple, so you won't see me. My Hollywood debut will have to wait. =)

When the baby needs a nap, everyone takes a turn until she only wants Mom.

A little first dance practice... 

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Josh + Sharly at Meadow Hill Farm

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Josh + Sharly at Meadow Hill Farm

I was beyond excited when I arrived at Meadow Hill Farm in Columbia, Tennessee. This would be my first time to shoot a wedding there with fellow photographer Laurie Oakes. My wedding photographer friends have been raving about this venue. Upon entering the gravel driveway, it was pretty easy to tell why Meadow Hill Farm is a big hit with brides to be and wedding vendors. Meadow Hill Farm is GORGEOUS! There are gardens of chaotic wild flowers everywhere. Mature trees fill the property making any outdoor lover swoon every time the breeze blows through the leaves. It didn't take this native Wisconsin gal long to figure out that the bride's corridor is an old milk house. LOVE! The groom's corridor is like a cabin. I hadn't parked my car yet and I was thinking to myself, "how long before I can come back and shoot another wedding?"

Josh and Sharly have two beautiful daughters and an inseparable love for one another. They've been together a number of years and you can see it in how comfortable they are with one another. They joked around as if they had been married forty years already. Their intimate wedding was a perfect fit for their personalities. I wish them a happy marriage filled with unending love. 

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George + Lauren at Lofty Hitchins

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George + Lauren at Lofty Hitchins

George and Lauren's wedding day was incredible! These two souls love big! You can literally see the love flow between the two of them when they look at one another. I discovered that when I captured their engagement session. The day started sunny, then partially overcast, which turned into a torrential rain storm right before bridal portraits were to start. The rain didn't dampen any spirits. In fact, it probably added an element of closeness and intimacy to the day.

There wasn't a detail that Lauren left out in the design process. Most elements were DIY projects from "flea markets and 4,000 trips to Goodwill" as Lauren stated. The cake was a family effort lead by George's Mother. It was so good! I may have had more than one piece. The homemade freezer jam (and gift for all attendees) was made by George's grandmother. His grandmother grew up working on a farm as one of nine children. They were taught to raise their own strawberries. She's been making strawberry jam since George was a little boy for family and friends. 

Lauren had her brother as her 'man of honor' and George had his sister as "best sis". Such a modern way for siblings to participate in the wedding party! I am beyond excited to continue to watch George & Lauren's love story grow.

At the end of every aisle was a verse from Corinthians.

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This little fella was the only guy allowed with the bridesmaids. THOSE EYES! 

There wasn't a dry eye during Lauren's 'first look' with her dad.

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George was full of tears as he saw his bride for the first time walking down the aisle.

As one of the groomsmen tells the story of how George & Lauren met and how excited George was that he was dating an 'older woman'.... everyone rolled with laughter. 

At one point the rain almost stopped, so we decided to be adventurous and ventured out. 

Did you know that whoever catches the garter is supposed to put it on his girlfriend's leg? 

When Dad is not a dancer, but he hits the dance floor for some fun awkward moves.

As a "man of honor", it is customary to carry your sister's dress above all the rain and mud.

Venue: Lofty Hitchins in Lawrenceburg, Tennessee

Wedding Cake: Kim Cummins, Cory Scott, Marlana Matheny, Ashton Matheny

Wedding Dress: Bridal Warehouse

Decorations: various flea markets and about 4,000 trips to goodwill :) 

Flowers: Jackson Blume - Columbia, Tennessee

Caterer: Campbell's Station - Culleoka, Tennessee

Hair: Heather Blocker, Michael's Hair Salon, Columbia, Tennessee

Make up: Sara King 

Tuxedos: Penguin 

Photography: Darcy Ferris Photography

Assistant Photographer: Debra Ferris

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May Wedding Madness by Darcy Ferris Photography

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May Wedding Madness by Darcy Ferris Photography

If you've ever been around a man for any length of time, (dad, brothers, boyfriend, husband, co-workers) you've probably heard of March Madness. The question is... have you ever heard of May Madness?!?! Probably not, because I'm making it up right now. Haha! Let me assure you that it DOES exist. It is the month that the wedding season hits full throttle for me and I LOVE IT! Every weekend and some week days are filled with exciting bride and groom celebrations. 

May is a wonderful month, but I've decided to make it even better. I'm offering a little bonus for Brides + Grooms that want to book their 2018 wedding. If you book during the remaining month of May or June 2017, you ONLY have to put a $500 retainer down to secure your wedding date. You don't have to put the usual 50% down. All you need is $500! Weddings are expensive and there's a lot of money being paid to secure your venue, food, dress, DJ, etc. Let me make it a little less stressful on you as you begin to start your journey together.

Want more information on wedding packages? Do you know someone who is engaged and this could help them financially? Send this email to them. They'll thank you!

click Darcy Ferris Photography to contact

 

 

 

 

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Jeri Dawn's Lifestyle Portrait Session in 12 South

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Jeri Dawn's Lifestyle Portrait Session in 12 South

A little confession... I've been completely envious of Jeri Dawn's perfect eyebrows since I met her. I tell her all the time. She's an absolutely gorgeous woman. Jeri Dawn is a make-up artist and a damn good one too. She's a photographer's dream to capture. She has this light inside of her when she smiles and laughs.

Jeri Dawn inquired about doing a photo session for a contest she was entering. The contest required very specific images and I was more than excited to be on board. We decided a sunrise session would be best. We picked a day and time and watched the weather obsessively. The forecast was to be clear. As we drove into the 12 South area of Nashville, the sprinkles began to fall. Thankfully, the rain never progressed into more than heavy sprinkles. We had lots of laughs over the weather. Towards the end of the session, the sun made its appearance. 

Black Dress. Shoes. Pants. Jewelry. Red Jacket. - Charlotte Russe

Gray Hoodie - Bella Ella Boutique

 

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Rich + Alyssa at Ferguson Hall

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Rich + Alyssa at Ferguson Hall

I met Alyssa a few years ago when I photographed a family session at her sister's house. Talk about a welcoming, sweet family. I felt beyond honored when asked to photograph Alyssa + Rich's intimate wedding just a few days before Christmas. They married at the historic Ferguson Hall in Spring Hill, Tennessee. 

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Photographer's Unite at Graystone Quarry

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Photographer's Unite at Graystone Quarry

I mentioned in a previous blog post that I belong to an amazing group of photographers called "Shoot To Kill". Read the previous post HERE. Again, no need to contact Homeland Security. This is solely photography related. =) Graystone Quarry is a beautiful wedding venue located on the southern edge of Franklin, TN. It's about five miles from my home.  It's hard to believe this now beautiful wedding venue was abandoned for over fifty years and used as a dump after the completion of Interstate 65. I LOVE that someone saw beauty in it's mess and decided to bring life to it. 

For me, photography is a lot like that abandoned dump. When I take photographs, I find the beauty, emotion and rawness in everything. Photography should be about creating a connection between the audience and the subject. If there's no connection; there's no meaning. 

What pulls you into a photograph? When I photograph couples, it's their emotions, love, laughter and longing to be with each other. When I photograph babies and children, it's the raw innocence, wonder and curiosity of everything surrounding them. Are you searching for someone to capture you or your family in a real, raw way of every day life? If yes, please don't hesitate to reach out to me. Let's grab a cup of coffee (my treat) and talk.

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Kristina + Eric's Maternity Shoot at Cumberland Park

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Kristina + Eric's Maternity Shoot at Cumberland Park

There's nothing more beautiful than a mother's pregnant glow. Kristina radiates while baby Alex grows inside of her. Eric + Kristina are first time parents-to-be. They are overjoyed at the thought of raising a little boy! Since they love downtown Nashville so much, they wanted their maternity photos to incorporate some well known areas. We started by Cumberland Park, walked up onto the Shelby Street Walking Bridge and ended up overlooking the Cumberland River. It was a memorable session and I cannot WAIT to meet baby Alex. I know Kristina + Eric are going to be fabulous, first-time parents!

A little Nashville backdrop with the Batman building and the Shelby Street Bridge.

Eric did some reading of Kristina's favorite children's book to baby Alex.

Make Up by Regan Kevan

Maternity Apparel by La Belle Bump

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Austin + Payton at Arrington Vineyards

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Austin + Payton at Arrington Vineyards

I LOVE couples that are so invested in each other that they don't know I'm present! I LOVE photographing couples that are not afraid to show their love and vulnerabilities. That is exactly who Austin + Payton are. They are a couple that have 'love' at the center core of their relationship. Payton's brother is Austin's best friend and that's how Austin + Payton met. They'd been friends for years prior to dating. The sweetest part might be that Austin asked Payton's brother permission before he asked Payton on a date. I don't have to tell you how the date went.

Payton could not be anymore gorgeous as she stepped into her dream dress, while mom assists.

The way they are together and they way he looks at her is everything.

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A Dog Can Change Everything by Darcy Ferris Photography

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A Dog Can Change Everything by Darcy Ferris Photography

Did you know that dogs are really four-legged, furry humans? At least, in my mind they are. I don't think I fully comprehended the love and loyalty of a dog until my dog, Newt, came into my life. He's my rescue, although he actually rescued me. 

Growing up, I was always around animals. My Grandpa had hunting dogs (redbone, blue tick  and black and tan hounds) that were used for bear, coon and coyote hunting. My grandma had a St. Bernard and huskies through the years too. All the dogs were acclimated to Wisconsin's four seasons, so they slept outside year round. Don't be concerned, as they all had dog houses and plenty of straw to keep them warm. Grandma also had birds and a couple aquariums for us grandkids to enjoy. There were plenty of stray farm cats too. I even had a pet raccoon for a while, but that's another blog. =)

I have felt many times in my life that the Lord has given me a gift to be a voice for the voiceless. Maybe that's why he created me to be a bold, courageous and adventurous woman. A couple months back, I was approached by a friend who is part of a dog rescue organization. They were looking for a photographer to do updated photos of the dogs for their website. I don't promote myself a pet photographer, but I figured that if a good photo gave a dog a better chance for adoption, then I'm all in. The organization has told me that I've been a blessing to them. In all honesty, it's the dogs who have blessed me. Dogs awaiting adoption only want someone to love them and to give love in return. I have found that they are the most loyal dogs out there. 

PSA: If you are interested in adopting a dog, please visit your local humane association. If you love dogs and cannot adopt, then go volunteer to play or walk them. Volunteers are always needed! Remember to keep your pet spayed or neutered to help control the pet population.

I caught this on camera and thought you'd get a laugh out of it. I know I did.

I've made some new friends in the process too. This sweet woman is Laura and she's such a blessing to these dogs and animal welfare. She's a true gift from above!

When I finished photographing the dogs, I made my way into the feline area. There were so many cats that needed adopted, so I decided to photograph them as well. They have such beautiful markings!

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