My Most-Loved Wedding Venues In New York

This may come as a shock, but we photographers have favorite venues to photograph. My favorites offer perfect lighting, picturesque design, and timeless views - what’s not to love?! I’ve been lucky enough to work with clients who choose to get married at some of the venues I love to shoot. You’ll soon be able to see why…

Here are some of my favorite photos of my most-loved wedding venues in New York:

The Sinclair Of Skaneateles // I’ve spent a lot of time at The Sinclair. I’ve shot weddings, styled shoots, and had mini sessions all in this one space! The Sinclair is so versatile and allows for all types of events. One thing that’s great about this venue for a wedding is the variety of photos you’re able to capture. From the aged look inside to the fun architecture outside and private ceremony area, it’s easy for photographers (and even easier for couples and their guests) to enjoy their all-in-one venue.

Photos from Marissa + Mark’s wedding

The Treman Center // The Treman Center in Ithaca has so many unique characteristics. Although it’s a barn venue, it doesn’t come off as one. It has a vast and elegant indoor space, whimsical grounds, and cute additional areas that you know took extra thought by the owners and builders to make as beautiful as they are. The spaces for couples to get ready, the outdoor patio, and the outside areas, are all immaculate, allowing for all styles of couples to enjoy this venue.

Photos from Chelsea + Sean’s wedding

Wagner Vineyards // Winery weddings are an awesome perk of living in the Fingerlakes area. One of my favorite venues is Wagner Vineyards. Wagner’s estate is rustic through and through, so those of you who are considering barn venues, look into wineries as well! They are filled with agricultural charm that I think is often overlooked by couples who want this style for their wedding day. Wagner has a breathtaking, large property, with the view of the lake in the background for ceremonies, and the reception center has tall, wood, vaulted ceilings. Wagner Vineyards is warm, cozy, and outdoorsy — perfect for romantic photo opportunities.

Photos from Taylor + Dan’s wedding

Emerson Park Pavilion // I love that in recent years the Emerson Park Pavilion has become a popular and gorgeous venue in Auburn. The space is naturally beautiful inside and out, offering a variety of spots for portraits. This is exciting for me as a photographer because I can give couples so many different styles of shots to choose from. Plus, the inside of the pavilion is vast and perfect for large, rave-like receptions, which are always fun to photograph!

Photos from Steph + Chuck’s wedding and Stephanie + Peter’s wedding

Inns of Aurora // The Inns of Aurora embodies everything that’s great about upstate New York - history, charm, comfort, and a lush look. Everything about this venue shouts luxury because of the detailed design that still has a calm and cool energy from Cayuga Lake in the background. The Inn itself and the town it’s in, both give off a comfortable, intimate feeling, which adds a unique charm to the photographs and a cozy experience for guests.

Photos from Larissa + Jonathan’s wedding

The Arbor Loft // The Arbor Loft is one of my favorite spots for weddings in Rochester! I love the light and airy ambiance that still has an industrial, city-like feel; it makes my job so much easier. All of the natural light pours inside from the large windows during the day, and the romantic fairy lights brighten the ceiling at night. This makes The Arbor Loft the perfect photo opportunity for the duration of any wedding.

Photos from Stephanie + Scott’s wedding

No matter your style and wedding theme, you’re bound to find a venue to love in New York. There are rustic, elegant, and timeless options all over the state that are beautiful for photography. Inquire here if you’re getting married at an awesome wedding venue that you think I’d love the opportunity to photograph as well!

My Favorite Floral Photos From 2018 Weddings

Today I’m sharing with you my favorite floral photos from weddings in 2018. I have an extra appreciation for floral design because my mom owns the Flower Shop in Auburn, and I have spent time helping her with designs for all types of occasions. I love to see all of the different flower styles, colors, and choices that couples showcase at their weddings! From floral arrangements alone, you get a sense of the couple’s wedding theme, the season, and style. Floral design is a huge part of wedding decoration and definitely captures the couple’s personal flair! From bouquets and centerpieces to floral walls - there were countless, unique arrangements I was able to photograph this year. I’ve chosen a few of my favorite designs (and just some photos I love that happen to include flowers) to share with you on my blog.

Bouquets // I love that bouquets give you the opportunity to have an array of different photos, I’ve done bridal portraits, wedding party shots, and cute couple’s photos, with the bouquet as an interesting detail to catch the eye. But one of my favorites is to show off the new bling for the new married couple! These personal touches can really help anyone who views the couple’s wedding photos get the perfect idea of the details on their special day.

AMK Floral

AMK Floral

DIY by bride

DIY by bride

Kelley Carrol

Kelley Carrol

St. Agnes

St. Agnes

Flowersmith Farm

Flowersmith Farm

DIY by bride

DIY by bride

AMK Floral

AMK Floral

Foley Florist

Foley Florist

Foley Florist

Foley Florist

Ceremony arches // I love the charming touch of floral design during a ceremony, it makes the ceremony even more romantic. From classic, rustic floral arches, to a more modern take on the arch, they all add such a unique element to the couple’s wedding and elevate the tone for what the ceremony is all about - expressing and promising their love to one another forever.

The Arbor Loft

The Arbor Loft

Flowersmith Farm

Flowersmith Farm

Flower wall by the bride, florals by AMK Floral

Flower wall by the bride, florals by AMK Floral

Flower wall by the bride, florals by AMK Floral

Flower wall by the bride, florals by AMK Floral

Reception design // Floral design at the reception is always so exciting to take in and shoot photos of! This is usually the part of the wedding when couples get to boast all of their decorations and sometimes flowers are the main part of their theme design. Centerpieces, dessert setups, and the head table are always adorned with gorgeous flowers - I love to see which couples I’m working with go with “less is more” and which go all out!

In Bloom Florals

In Bloom Florals

Flowersmith Farm

Flowersmith Farm

AMK Floral

AMK Floral

AMK Floral

AMK Floral

RosyLilyFlowers

RosyLilyFlowers

St. Agnes

St. Agnes

No matter the couple’s style, I love capturing all of the smaller details on a wedding day like the floral design. This is what makes their wedding unique, it’s what they and other people can look at for years to come to be transported back to their beautiful day! I can perfectly capture the floral details on your wedding day! If you enjoy my work and are looking for a photographer to photograph your day, inquire here.

Ashlee + Jeven // Izzo's White Barn Winery Wedding Photography

I’m super excited to share this short and sweet wedding with you guys! I had a couple wedding days in 2018 that were 5 hours or less coverage, which is usually the perfect Friday night wedding timeline! I loved the deep tones in Ashlee and Jeven’s photos, especially after their ceremony when we spent time with their bridal party.

These photos are a great example of how a crunched timeline won’t sacrifice the perfect wedding photos!

We started out photographing the guys and the girls separately. Immediately, I knew this would be a fun and casual night just celebrating these two finally getting married after knowing they each were “the one” from day one. Also, Olivia got some of my most favorite groom portraits ever of Jeven. They just look magical!

I would be remiss not to honorably mention Jeven’s father, who suddenly passed away this winter. I’m always grateful to stay connected with my couples via social media after their weddings, because being aware of major life events like this really puts what I do into perspective. It’s a reminder that anything can happen and that in many families, weddings are some of the only occasions where our family members are photographed professionally. I’m so thankful that Ashlee and Jeven had their wedding when they did, and that they have these memories with Charles from their wedding day.

Ashlee and Jeven’s ceremony was quick, simple and even a little funny at points - anyone who doesn’t laugh once during their ceremony isn’t living! And because it was so casual, Olivia and I were able to move all around and get some great angles throughout.

Jeven and his brothers came through immediately with some good photo ideas, since both brothers had also been married at Izzo’s White Barn Winery. I love a groom with ideas! We had a great time and I looove these moody photos.

I drive past this winery every time I head west, and always have envisioned a photo with a couple standing amongst the vines, with the white barn and “winery” in the background. We almost missed out on this photo because the sun dropped super fast, but I got it!!

I loved the details that these guys planned, including a key display for escort cards and their simple cutting cake and all the cupcakes for their guests. Their night was really dedicated to eating, drinking and dancing together which is all that really matters!

Thank you Ashlee and Jeven, for giving me the incredible experience of photographing your wedding last fall. I hope you’ll cherish these photos for a lifetime!


The Vendors who helped make this day so fantastic are:

Ceremony + Reception Venue // Izzo’s White Barn Winery

Catering // Dewey’s Catering

Cake/Dessert // Hann’s Homemade

Hair + Makeup // Taylor Ely + Alex

Bride’s Dress // David’s Bridal

Bridesmaids’ Dresses // Spy Baby Bridal

Menswear // Men’s Wearhouse

Floral Design // Kelley Carrol

DJ/Entertainment // DJ Hump

Chelsea + Sean // Treman Center, Ithaca NY Wedding Photography

Ok, I have to preface this post with this - my weddings are like my kids… I love them all equally for different reasons. One for its aesthetic, one for its personality, one for its sweetness and ability to make me cry. Chelsea and Sean’s wedding is like that kid who you won’t say you love more, but they’re basically perfect and you’d take them anywhere with you. This wedding just hit me in every way. It LOOKED amazing - so unique, so colorful, so fun - and it felt even more amazing to be part of. It was so emotional and the love in the room was overwhelming. Also, when two parents finally tie the knot… that just gets me in a whole nother level. I can connect to that feeling of “finally” and just being so excited to complete that circle.

I first started working with Chelsea and Sean several months before their wedding, on their Save the Dates and then their invitations! I’m kicking myself right now for not having a photo of their save the date, but it was a cute little calendar laying out the month of September 2018, with a heart over their date. We also incorporated the flowers and fonts that we ended up carrying through all of their stationery and signage.

Chelsea was such a breeze to work with. When I send a concept and there are no changes, my first reaction is elation of course, but then it turns to assuming there MUST be something wrong. Nope!! She was just that cool and trusted me to do my thing using the ideas we ironed out in our meeting. Sean is a fantastic chef, and their day would include fantastic farmhouse boards as centerpieces, filled with veggies, cheeses, bread, etc. I knew I needed to include that in our design somehow!

I had been crushing on The Treman Center for quite some time, after seeing several photographers I admire shooting there. It’s such a unique, beautiful place. It doesn’t quite feel like a barn venue for some reason, which puts it into this great position to serve a variety of couples with different styles in mind.

I arrived that day just as Chelsea was finishing her hair and makeup, and immediately felt at ease among her bridesmaids, mom, and of course the two sweetest flower girls.

Olivia and I photographed details until Sean arrived and it was time for a “first look” with Chelsea’s dad.

And then a first look between Lauren and her dad. I could cry just reminiscing about it!

And… I’m obsessed with these groomsmen looks. I wish I could be a groomsman so I could wear it haha!!

Chelsea was just the most beautiful, sweet, happy bride on earth that day. Looking back on these photos where you can see her full expression in every picture is one of my favorite things about this wedding. Their vows to one another were absolute perfection and once it was over with, their joy and excitement to be together could not be contained.

And cue some of my favorite portraits ever….

Chelsea and Sean really utilized the space inside and around the Treman Center to the best of its ability. The best thing about having such an expansive location like this is the experience it gives your guests, but the ease of not having to drive to separate locations for changes of scenery. These two did their first dance on the back patio before dinner, with a beautiful view of the barn in the background.

I could not have truly envisioned the spread that Chelsea and Sean were planning for before seeing it in person. It was so fun, so cool, and such a great way for guests to be encouraged to chat and share. Their color palette was perfect all the way through, and the food spreads just complimented all of it!

I know that Sean and Chelsea really wanted a casual feeling reception where they could have time to be together and just party with their guests. The timeline was so open and flowed so well that they truly were not stressed or pressed for time on anything. I know they seriously had the time of their lives that day, and it’s evident in their reception photos!

Oh, and to top it off… of course they had a band.

Chelsea and Sean - thank you for having me be part of your day. I hope I don’t sound crazy in this post, but truly I’m still crazy over your wedding day. I know I share this sentiment with you guys - let’s do it all over again!!

Thanks for reading, guys!


The Vendors who made this day so fantastic are:

Stationery // Emma Bauso Design

Venue // Treman Center

Catering // FLX Table

Cake/Dessert // Sinfully Delicious Baking Co.

Hair + Makeup // Linsey Bethea & Erin Bienvenue

Bride’s Dress // Lovely Bride Philadelphia

Bridesmaids’ Dresses // Lulu's

Menswear // Jos A. Bank

Floral Design // Flowersmith Farm

Rentals // Rick's Rental World

DJ/Entertainment // The Bob Greco Band

Marissa + Mark // Sinclair of Skaneateles Wedding

I’m so thrilled to be sharing this beautiful wedding with you guys today! Marissa and Mark not only had me photograph their perfect September wedding day, but I also worked on their invitations throughout the summer. It’s always such a joy to be able to help my clients out with both photography and stationery, and it builds a really nice relationship that puts me at such ease on their wedding day. It’s not lost on me that when I begin coverage on a wedding day, I’m entering into a really sacred space filled with years and years of love, friendship, and family. It’s my job to quickly insert myself into that space and sense all of those special bonds so I can capture them thoughtfully and accurately. That’s why it’s important to forge a good relationship with all of my couples beforehand!

Marissa began her day on the beautiful third floor of the Sinclair of Skaneateles. I believe they had only recently renovated this floor, to be used as a space for bridal parties to get ready in and store their things throughout the day. It’s such a bonus to this space that I’m personally really grateful for. I took some killer portraits of Marissa before she headed down to their first look - they’re some of my favorite bridal portraits ever!

Mark and his guys arrived on site just before we planned to do their first look, and my sister Olivia captured some of their “getting ready” photos then and there. For some, having a bunch of photos of the groomsmen preparing for the day is not necessary so we always offer to do a condensed version of those photos when they arrive for the ceremony, whether that’s at a church or the reception venue. This is also great for grooms who don’t love having their photo taken!

I’m still SO in love with all of the group and couple photos from this wedding. The grass is always a little darker and more lush in September and the sun a little bit lower and shadier, giving me the ability to make their photos look very dramatic - a look that worked well with their beautiful black bridesmaid dresses and classy tuxedos! Thanks to these guys opting for a first look before their ceremony, we got all of their portraits done early in the day so they didn’t have to worry about being separated from their guests at all!

Mark and Marissa’s ceremony also took place on the Sinclair property, and was officiated by Mark’s cousin, Nick Musso. I loved his funny commentary, and how he made their ceremony very personal and interactive.

This reception was one where I think every guest must have hit the dance floor at least once! It’s not always the case that family - both young and old - get out there, but Marissa and Mark’s sure did!

Thank you guys SO much for having me photograph your beautiful day, and for having me along for your planning process as well.


The vendors who made this day possible were:

Venue // Sinclair of Skaneateles

Catering // Balloons

Cake / Dessert // Pat Personius

Stationery // Emma Bauso Designs

Brides Dress // Kleinfeld’s

Bridesmaids Dresses // David’s Bridal, Vera Wang

Floral Design // Nicole Wendt

DJ / Entertainment // DJ Hump

What's so great about mini sessions?

Mini sessions are one of my favorite ways to make sure all of my recurring AND new clients get updated photos of themselves and their families. I have done several rounds of these special events in the couple of years that I’ve been a photographer, and today I wanted to share with you what the best parts of mini sessions are. If you’ve never booked a session like this, you’ll love knowing all of these pros before you decide to schedule one with me or your preferred photographer!

mini-photography-sessions

1 // They’re Quick!

It’s right in the name - mini ! Usually mini sessions are 20 or 30 minutes, which is actually the perfect amount of time to have all the photos you could possibly want. This time frame is especially great for families with 2 or 3 young kids who might not last through an entire 1-hour session. Usually 20 minutes is a perfect amount of time to get a couple full family shots, some individuals, and several candids in between all of those Christmas-Card-and-framed-gift-worthy shots. Plus, no husband or boyfriend has ever complained during these quick sessions ;D

2 // They’re Affordable

I love planning these sessions as many times in a year as I can, because I know that not every family or couple wants to invest hundreds of dollars to update their family photos. Most of my regular sessions happen for big life events - new baby, engagement, maternity, etc - but it’s so important to have new photos of your family as they grow more and more every day. All of those sessions can add up, though! That’s why spending $150 or so a year on these sessions is reasonable for most people. Save your money for the big life events and book a mini session once or twice a year!

3 // They’re Usually Adorably Styled

Personally, almost all of the mini session events I’ve planned come with some sort of “theme” or stylized setting. I like to have it as something special (and honestly to draw people in with my fun ideas ;D) but I usually plan for the fact that not everyone will want to take their photos in front of the setting I have planned. Usually the locations lend themselves well to venturing off course a bit, which is a great way to make your session different from the others I do that day! I also love using mini sessions as a way to connect with other vendors in the area, whether it’s with my girl Katie from She Rents Vintage, Stacey from The Cake Shop CNY, or with a venue I love - like the Sinclair of Skaneateles.

4 // They’re Timely

Any smart photographer will offer mini sessions before a holiday or during a season when people are going to want photos to give as gifts, in celebration of something, or because the weather is getting cooler and the leaves are changing (I’m looking at you, fall!) I like offering mini sessions around Christmas, Mother’s Day, and in September. This year I’m thinking of squeezing in Father’s Day sessions as well! I have also have done some last-minute headshot sessions so that anyone in need of professional looking portraits of themselves can easily have a handful of good ones. Mini sessions are also easy for a photographer to edit within just a few days, especially if they’re during their off season for weddings, so you can expect the turnaround time to be pretty fast!

So, are you itching to have on of these mini sessions for yourself? You’re in luck! I’m planning a whole day of 20 minute sessions at the end of April, just in time for Mother’s Day! Learn more about them here:



 
minisessions-2.jpg
 

Brooke + Brandon // Arbor Loft Rochester, NY Wedding

My second wedding at the beautiful Arbor Loft in Rochester NY was such a special, fun experience! Brooke and Brandon are both swing dancers - he proposed to her at a swing dancing convention - so their reception featured a swing band and lots of great (and borderline dangerous!) swing dancing. It was such a unique night for me!

But, I’m getting ahead of myself! Brooke and her gals got ready in the most beautiful renovated old school building, near the Memorial Art Gallery, which can be rented out like an AirBnb and features the pull-down chalkboards along one wall of the room, a neat lofted bed, super high ceilings, and lots of charm! I had fun hanging the dresses and styling the detail shots in that space.

Brandon and his guys got ready in the apartment that he and Brooke share. It was a beautiful day outside, so my sister Olivia took them out front and had lots of fun making the groomsmen toss Brandon up in the air. Who says your wedding photos have to be all serious? I like a mixture of both!

Brooke and Brandon’s ceremony took place at Artisan Church in Rochester, and was a wonderful and personal experience. They’re regular attendees of the church’s services and knew the pastor and his wife very well! I love that many of the couples whose weddings I’ve photographed in Rochester share a similar experience with their churches/pastors. It’s definitely a place that values that type of relationship with their worship community.

After the ceremony, we headed to the Sunken Gardens in Highland Park to take their bridal party and portrait photos. I love using the castle there as a backdrop - architectural settings are my jam, if you couldn’t tell!

We then traveled to the Arbor Loft, where the bridal party headed to the cocktail hour and Olivia and I took Brooke and Brandon around the neighborhood for some more portraits of the two of them. These are some of my favorite Rochester photographs! I really love when a couple is open to just taking a walk and seeing what we stumble upon. I imagine it can be hard for them to trust that vision, but I’m so glad when they do.

As I began this post, their reception was just so much fun. I loved seeing different movements, hearing familiar songs being sung by the amazing Swooners, a local swing style band and last but not least, their donuts from Scratch Bakeshop. The decor of their reception was simple but really beautiful - something that many Arbor Loft weddings have in common because the space speaks for itself!

After a while, Brooke changed into a second outfit that she could “swing” much easier in, and then danced the night away. I think the two of them hardly left the dance floor all night, and they inspired all of their guests to try swing dancing too! It was sort of silly watching some of the guests try their versions out, but I loved the energy in the room with everyone trying something new together.

Thank you, Brooke and Brandon, for having me photograph this special day for you guys! It was such a blast.


The vendors who made this day possible included:

Ceremony Venue // Artisan Church

Reception Venue // Arbor Loft Downtown

Catering // Peerless Events

Dessert // Scratch Bakeshop

Planner / Coordination // Jiosia Designs

Hair + Makeup // Beautiful Moments of Western New York

Brides Dress // Lovely Bride, Victor

Bridesmaids Dresses // David's Bridal

Menswear // Black Lapel, Best Fit Menswear

Floral Design // Jiosia Designs

Rentals // McCarthy Rentals, Jiosia Designs

DJ / Entertainment // The Swooners

Jessica + Brett // Belhurst Castle, Geneva NY Wedding

Hey there! Today I’m sharing one of my favorite shorter wedding days ever. In the summer, it’s totally possible to start your wedding later in the evening and still have the full experience and no shortage of fun! That’s exactly the case for Jessie and Brett, whose wedding at Belhurst Castle on a Friday evening in August 2018 was so special and beautiful.

My sister and I arrived later in the afternoon to do some quick “getting ready” photos with each of them, before going right into their first look on the grounds of the castle that overlooks Seneca Lake. The clouds made for a perfect light diffuser and therefore, the most luscious greens and skin tones in all of their photos!

Their ceremony was full of beautiful, intimate details like readings inspired by literature and a traditional hand fasting ceremony, made special by the couple’s mothers. To top it off, a bubble exit for some whimsical, joyful photos of them coming back up the aisle as a married couple!

Nothing was more perfect than the view over the lake as the sun set behind it and the full moon rose high in the sky. The water was a deep, glassy blue-grey that matched the sky and made an endless-looking backdrop for their portraits together.

The best surprise of the night came at the start of their reception, which was made simple by no fancy entrances or introductions besides Jessie and Brett themselves. Their friend and groomsman Erik played the ukulele in the background of their joint rendition of “La Vie En Rose” - Brett with the words in English and Jessie with hers in French. I mean… definitely a highlight of my 2018 wedding season! I didn’t ever want it to end!

Then, with no time to waste, Jessie switched into a jumpsuit so she could properly show off her fantastic dance moves and the party started! Their wedding was one that was full of really special details but nothing more than what was needed. I’m so glad I was able to be the one to photograph it all!


Jessica + Kevyn // Ventosa Vineyards Wedding

Jess + Kevyn’s wedding day was one that I looked forward to for such a long time - literally, because they booked me almost two years before their wedding! Jess was a bridesmaid in one of my first weddings ever, so I was overjoyed when she and Kevyn chose me to capture their day. I’ll always be thankful for those first few couples who loved my earliest work and trusted that I would get even better in time for their wedding day.

The morning of their wedding on August 18, 2018 began overcast and windy. I remember Jess was nervous that it would suddenly turn to rain, but luckily the clouds turned fluffy and white and it ended up being a beautiful day in Geneva, NY! She and her girls rented out a gorgeous historical Georgian home near downtown to get ready in, which was such a treat to have as the setting for the start of our day. I loved how her bridesmaids gathered together within the two upstairs bedrooms and watched each other get ready for the day, joking and laughing all morning.

Kevyn and his groomsmen got ready at a nearby hotel, which provided the most beautiful setting for my second photographer, Sammy Caldwell, to photograph them in. I knew Kevyn and his guys would also be a ton of fun - they had lots of photo ideas for Sammy! And when they got serious, I couldn’t imagine a more dapper looking group!

Ventosa Vineyards has one of my favorite ceremony locations because no matter which direction your camera is pointed in, there is beauty! The mansion that sits on the property is beautifully situated in the background, and of course there’s the iconic vineyard overlooking Seneca Lake - you can’t go wrong. Their ceremony was full of emotion, from Kevyn’s first look at Jessica as she walked down the aisle with her dad to the mention of his late best friend and best man, Craig, who sadly passed away just months before their wedding day. Jess’ infectious smile and their laughter together brought everything full circle and made it a truly special experience for all of us.

After photographing these two for their engagement photos a year before their wedding, I knew portraits with them would be easy because they truly enjoy each others’ company. With just a little direction, we made some of my favorite photos ever.

But my MOST favorite moments of the day came after all of that. I could have never imagined Kevyn’s killer dance moves, which came right out of the gate in both his first dance with Jess and his dance with his mom! I’m glad they held tight to his hand because they could have easily been sent flying! The rest of their reception was such a blast to photograph. Not a moment went by where I was at a loss for someone to photograph. It’s not every wedding that pretty much all the guests hit the floor at some point! But Jess and Kevyn’s guests came ready to party. I think I smiled and laughed all night!