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Rob and Anna | Wedding

Back in October I helped my good friend and photog extraordinaire Trevor Dayley shoot Rob and Anna’s wedding. I was so blessed to be a part of this event, not only because it was fantastic to hang out with Trevor for a few hours, but also the wedding itself was absolutely beautiful.

I always want to tell a story with my wedding posts, but since I was only helping Trevor for this one, I didn’t get to find out too much about Rob and Anna. I do know they constantly get asked how old they are since they both look very young. And Anna was the last of her 3-4 sisters to get married, which made Dad shed quite a few tears at the reception! I can’t imagine having that many daughters and seeing them all get married one by one. Just watching Father of the Bride these days results in me getting all weepy eyed.

This wedding was so gorgeous. Rob and Anna were awesome and looked amazing. Once we stepped into the backyard reception area, Trevor and I couldn’t stop taking pictures of all the details being set-up by Rust and Lace. It was almost a duel to see who was getting the better compositions (I won of course). I would HIGHLY recommend them for your own wedding. And then please invite me to shoot it for you. I could never grow tired of their vintage items and beautiful flower arrangements.

And hats off to DJ Matt Figueroa for doing a seriously cool job.

There was a lot of other fun stuff too…like the kids jumping on the trampoline…or one of the groomsmen jumping THROUGH the trampoline. Ah, you’ll see a bit later.

Thanks to Trevor for inviting me to help him (here is his blog post of the wedding), to Rob and Anna for being awesome and  to the entire family on both sides. Had such a fun time and I wish these two newlyweds the very best.

The Ross family

I went to high school with Melanie…which was…yeah, a long time ago. We didn’t run in the same circles really, but she has always been one of my favorite people that I remember from high school. She and her friend Lori were short, cute and the nicest people that you’d ever meet. They were almost like twins. They were always together.  And they had a unique way about them…like standing out in front of the school just waving at people as they drove up. Not just a normal wave, but like they were in a beauty pageant  or something.

I thought it was hilarious, which is likely why I still remember that to this day.

Now here we are…10…15…alright…18 years later and she’s got this massive, adorable family. They also have a unique story that I need to hear sometime. In the image below, the two kids on the right are hers, the other three belong to her husband Daniel. But technically, they all belong to each other now as Daniel just recently adopted her two kids as his own.

Such an amazing moment for them and I know from briefly asking about it that this was a huge deal.

So now they are this giant family of seven. We met up in downtown Gilbert for a mini-session last week and had a blast. Usually with these short little shoots, I try to grab group shots, individual shots and hopefully a couple of fun ones before we’re finished.

And what else is more fun than getting seven people to jump in the air at the same time? We did a lot of jumping at the end, and I kind of wished I was out there with ’em.

It was so awesome meeting you guys! Loved all the kids and hopefully we’ll meet up again down the road!

The Kruckenberg family

Photographing the Kruckenberg fam is always a treat because…well, look at ’em. Nothing but cuteness everywhere. Yeah, even Brian, whatever, I said it.

We’ve known this family for a long time now. Brian is the pastor at the church we attend called New City in downtown Phoenix. In fact, a large part of the reason we live downtown in the first place was to help that church get going. It’s been awesome to watch what is happening with it and how it’s growing.

They’ve been huge in our lives and we love them to pieces.

Tuesday evening we hooked up near Lola’s Coffee on Roosevelt and 3rd Avenue to snap their annual family photos. I absolutely love this little area of downtown Phoenix. Awesome sidewalks, cute side streets…and lots of brick. Brian had a great idea to take some images standing in the middle of Portland Street (the one with all the palm trees) and that was super awesome.

Lately if I haven’t laid down in the middle of a street to shoot photos of someone, it doesn’t feel like a normal session. Of course, one of these days my clients will fail to alert me of an approaching car and that will be the end of all that!

We even ended up on the roof of the church offices…which was just fun in of itself…I mean, who doesn’t like walking around on the roof of a house?

Thanks Krucks for letting me do this for you guys again…I love seeing your family change from year to year!

The Sanchez family

Brandy and her cute family have been doing big store studio photo sessions ever since they had kid number one.  But last time out it didn’t go so well, so she wanted to try something different. She asked me to shoot her little boy’s 1-year photos, plus just general family pictures of her other two girls, Jayden and Lili.

I am obviously a huge fan of outdoor, lifestyle photography, so I couldn’t have been more excited to show this family how much fun you can have just walking around taking pictures.

We ventured down to one of the Rio Salado parks in south Phoenix and despite being eaten alive by mosquitoes, we had an amazing time. Little man Adrian was so adorable I think I took a billion photos solely of him and they are all awesome! The eldest, Jayden…well, she’s gonna be a model someday more than likely. I didn’t have to do much except point the camera and let her run with it.

Now little Lili…well, she had her own agenda. I believe she was making me prove myself…like, “if you can shoot me, you can shoot anyone!” I loved her. She has this quiet stubborness you don’t usually see in kids. They either cry or throw tantrums. But not Lili…she was just like, nope, not doing it!

Little did she know I got a bunch of shots of her anyways!

Had such a blast with this group and afterwards received one of the kindest emails ever. Thanks so much you guys for letting me do this for you and can’t wait to see you all again in the spring!

The Servin family

The day after Thanksgiving is usually the day everyone goes shopping. For me though, it’s the day I take pictures of the Servin family.

I turn 37 in February, which means I’ve been friends with Sam and his family for over 20 years now. Definitely my oldest friend that I still get to see here and there. He was the best man at my wedding and now here we both are married with young kids growing up right before our eyes. I’m so proud of him and his little clan.

But that’s not everyone who showed up for picture day. Sam’s parents, Sam’s brother Joe and his family, and sister Bianca. Eleven people. I don’t see them as much as I wish, so doing this shoot is an absolute blast for me. I just love the kids, they all enjoy looking into the camera and getting their pictures taken, which is always a plus! Been great to watch them all grow up!

Thanks again guys for letting me do this for you!

The Demma family

We’ve know the Demma family for a long time now…but I hadn’t met any of the kids besides the older boy Korver. So it was awesome to get introduced to Glazier and Gianna. The entire family is a good-looking group, but you had to love these kids. The photo above was pretty much all them…in fact, they just kept sitting places, hugging each other, smiling for the camera and making my job a lot easier!

And you have to dig the smiling from Korver and Glazier…considering they both possess sizable gaps in their teeth despite being years apart! I believe that was due to Korver knocking one out of Glazier’s mouth during a rousing game of football. Ah…brothers.

Was awesome to hang out with these guys for a little bit in the Arizona desert and just amazing to see how this family has expanded and grown! Thanks so much guys for letting me snap some photos of you all!

One shot – Jason and Cruz

Jason with his little man Cruz. Love these guys.

More to come from the entire Williams family.

Mike

The Johnson family

When you are lucky enough to photograph the same families every year, it’s kind of fun to see how things change. Like with the Johnson family here. Last year baby Aly was a bundle of joy and sat there for an eternity letting me take pictures. And little Nick wanted nothing to do with me.

This year, the opposite. Nick was a superstar model. He pretty  much wanted to be in every picture. Aly? Well, she had her own agenda.

I do love this family though. As I mentioned in the Nakamura post this week, Dave and Meribeth used to work at AMC Theaters, along with me and my wife, back years before kids were even an idea to us. I never actually worked alongside them, but my wife did and I remember meeting them at some point.

Amazing to still be in touch well over a decade later.

And an amazing family too. Beautiful kids. Good people.

Thank you guys!

April, Mark, Greer and Merton

This shoot was a special one, for a couple of reasons, but mostly for how it ended.

Sometimes things don’t always work out how you imagined. The goal was to get a photo of little man Greer with the elderly statesmen of the house, Merton…a fantastic dog of 13 years. And other photos of course.  Hopefully a nice Christmas card would be made with a boy and his dog. I had ideas of the perfect pose, exactly what I wanted. So did mom and dad.

But for whatever reason, poor Greer wasn’t feeling too great right before the shoot. Mom thought he must be coming down with an ear infection. Ugh, poor kid.

So it ended up being a bit rough for him to have this goofy photographer with a massive camera right in his face. The shot we wanted proved elusive.  But it all led up to a beautiful moment at the end of the shoot that is kind of what being a parent is all about.

About two-thirds down in the photos below, April, Mark and Greer are standing together in the path and you can kind of see the little guy is crying. He’s just done. In fact, right after those pictures, he walked past me, tears in his eyes, stops, turns to me and says “Buh-bye” and keeps walking. So funny this kid. We get it. The shoot is over.

So dad picks him up and takes him over to the trees in this grove and just loves on the little guy. Helps him pick some pistachios. I just hide away and snap some photos. Then mom joins them and a bunch of smiles and happiness takes place.

It was beautiful to watch. And that’s a lot of the fun of photographing families like this…when you can capture that love they have for each other. It’s not always so easy.

Thanks so much guys for allowing me to hang with you a bit. And thanks to Greer for being such a champ. Hope you guys have an amazing holiday season!

 

The Nakamura famiily

It took me about 30 minutes to finally ask Shelley and Brian if Noah and Hannah were the same age. I’m kind of slow, but it dawned on me that these two absolutely adorable kids might be twins. And yes, they were! The first time I’ve ever taken pictures of twins and I’m glad these two were the ones. They did a great job and were super fun to work with!

I met the Nakamura’s up in Scottsdale last week for a quick shoot to get some family photos. Was awesome meeting these guys, who are friends with another family that I shot this weekend.

Both those families, and my own, have one thing in common: Almost all of us have worked at AMC Theaters at some point in our lives. Shelley is the only one of the bunch who hasn’t, but we wont hold that against her! I always look back fondly on that job…working as a projectionist, seeing every film that came out…random hours, great fun.  Not to mention that’s where my wife and I both worked when we first started dating sooooo many years ago.

ANYWAYS…thanks to the Nakamura’s for letting me hang out with you guys and take some pictures. You have a crazy beautiful family and I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season!