sandy + brian

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“Everything that I understand, I understand only because I love.” – Leo Tolstoy

Within the first few moments of meeting and talking to to Sandy and Brian, we knew we wanted to be a part of their wedding day.  They are the kind of people that instantly make you feel at ease – like you’ve known them forever – and they exude kindness with every word and every glance.  As we sat there with them over coffee and tea at our first get-together, and listened to them talk about how they wanted their wedding day to be all about their love for each other, and their love for their families and friends, we just knew.  We are so grateful to have had the opportunity to be a part of such an awesome celebration of love and family – it truly was an amazing day.  :)

Sandy and Brian chose what is, in our opinion, one of the most beautiful, breathtaking venues around as far as natural beauty is concerned – The Glen Iris Inn, at Letchworth State Park.  We love shooting there for any reason. The scenery is spectacular. Always, and in any season. But I have to say, that weddings at The Glen Iris Inn are extra, extra spectacular.  It’s just an incredible place for a wedding.

I started out the day with Sandy, her mom, and her maid-of-honor in the “library,” which is on the top floor of The Glen Iris Inn.  It’s such a cool room to get ready in, and the woodwork is so fabulous!

Sandy and Brian had a bowl of stones placed at the entrance to the ceremony site, and every guest picked one up on their way to their seat.  During the ceremony, Rev. Carol asked everyone to hold their stone tightly, and silently offer their best wishes for the newly married couple.  She then instructed everyone to place their stone back in the bowl after the ceremony, so Sandy and Brian could keep and display the “bowl of best wishes” in their home.  How cool is that?!  Such a great idea!!
The ceremony was absolutely beautiful.  Sincere, heartfelt words spoken in front of their closest family and friends, against one of the most amazing backdrops that New York has to offer.  
After the ceremony, we did some family and wedding party shots in front of the falls.
Then, we had the pleasure of wandering the park with this lovely, lovely couple, to create some beautiful wedding day portraits.  ;)  The spots we stumbled across while wandering were nothing short of amazing.  The light through the trees was incredible.
And then, of course, there is this shot of Ben’s, which is one of my favorite shots of his for all time.  AMAZING.
After we walked the park for a while, we headed back over to the tent so Sandy and Brian could make their grand entrance.  I was loving these details!  I am obsessed with the birch log place card holder – obsessed.  The little owls were ridiculously cute, too.  :)
The Glen Iris Inn is extremely well run, so they have the whole scheduling thing down to a science.  After dinner, they have the DJ announce that the photographers will be taking a group photo of every guest over by the falls so that they can clean up everything from dinner, and prep for phase two of the reception – cake and dancing.  GENIUS.  It’s kind of like an intermission.  We’ve never seen anything like it before, but it definitely works.  So, while we were waiting for everyone to wander over for the huge group photo, we grabbed this shot of Sandy and Brian in front of the Inn, as well as a few awesome candid shots that I love.  ;)
And just when we thought the evening couldn’t get any more magical than it already was…this happened.  Two spectacular hot air balloons came swooping through the gorge, and everyone scrambled for their cameras and started shooting away.  It was very cool.  :)
Then, we all headed back over to the tent for the cake and dancing part of the reception.  I love, love, love this first shot of Sandy looking at her cake right before they cut it.  LOVE.
All of the kids at the wedding were given a pinwheel by Sandy…super cute.  Oh, and in addition to the cake, there was a flaming dessert station where a chef in an awesome hat would put mixed berries in a pan, add vodka, light it on fire, and then pour it over ice cream.  Ummmmmmm…..yes, please.
After Sandy and Brian’s super adorable first dance, the floor opened up, and things got funky.  We had a blast shooting each and every moment of this day!  :)

Sandy and Brian – THANK YOU so very much for choosing us to document this absolutely breathtaking day! You are two of the kindest souls we have ever had the pleasure of meeting, and we’re so grateful that we were able to be a part of this very special moment in your lives. Working with you guys has been a wonderful experience for us every step of the way, and we wish you all the happiness in the world! You SO deserve it. Much love to you both! – J + B :)

  • Erin Oveis Brant SAYS...

    So beautiful!!!

  • Jennifer @QueenCityBride SAYS...

    Way too many great details to list! Great job!!!

  • Heidi SAYS...

    LOVE! And of course agree that it’s one of the most fabulous places for a wedding ;)

  • Katie SAYS...

    These are gorgeous. My favorite shot is the one where they are going back up the stairs. The way the light shines through the trees on them is just magical. And props to Ben for the shot below that one too…just stunning all around guys!

  • Sandy SAYS...

    Thank you for so beautifully capturing the story of our day!! Oh, and SO psyched that the flambee station made the blog :) lol

  • Meliss SAYS...

    These photos are absolutely stunning. Amazing work! (Beautiful wedding too!!) :)

  • Kathleen SAYS...

    Amazing! I love love love her dress it looks stunning on her and I love the photo of them on the steps looking at the camera with the light coming through the trees and of course the photo of them with the hot air balloon :). What a beautiful wedding!

  • Ayres Photography SAYS...

    Thanks, Mike! It took me forever to choose just the right quote, but I’m pretty happy with that one. :)

  • Mike SAYS...

    wow, what a gorgeous wedding! I really like that quote too!