Kemi & Warren
The Villa at Ridder Country Club in East Bridgewater, Massachusetts
August 1st, 2016
A lot of times when a couple is planning a big event for the first time - and let's face it, it doesn't get bigger than a wedding - there's so much pressure to conform to a set of preconceived notions about what that event is supposed to be that your own vision for your big day gets lost.
Maybe it's compromising on a location or choosing a different time of year than you originally wanted but, for many couples, the wedding of their dreams and the wedding they have are often two different affairs.
Perhaps that's why I left Kemi and Warren's August wedding at the Villa at Riddler Country Club in East Bridgewater, Massachusetts with such a large smile on my face. Kemi and Warren are two of the most genuinely nice people I have ever met and to see their wedding come out exactly as they envisioned, how they envisioned it, was incredibly rewarding ... both as their wedding photographer and as a person in the room watching their day play out.
Kemi and Warren had an absolute riot of a wedding, and one of the most fun receptions I've ever seen. To say I loved the way these photos came out is a giant understatement. This is one wedding I'll remember for years to come.
My coverage of Kemi and Warren's big day started a lot later than many of my weddings do but for good reason: the bride and groom chose to get married on a Monday.
Now, I'll be honest. When I first heard their wedding was going to take place on a Monday, I naturally assumed it would be a quick and quiet affair with a few guests and a subdued party. After all, who parties on a weeknight? (College kids notwithstanding.)
My perception of their day changed mighty quick, however, when I met the other members of their wedding party. Warren's group of male friends were the very definition of "looks can be deceiving" as outwardly they appeared like quiet, thoughtful gentlemen but once the music started, they very quickly and very thoroughly proved to be the life of the party.
And the bridesmaids? Talk about a group of fiercely powerful and beautiful women. There wasn't a single member of Kemi's bridal party that I would dare talk smack to. These girls were headstrong, attractive and fun. A perfect match for the bride they were standing for.
And that brings me to Kemi and Warren. If you want to know all about this bride and groom, all you have to do is look at the photos above.
Kemi and Warren have an incredible spiritual connection that is evident if you spend more than three minutes with them and, on their wedding day, that connection was moving for even the most hardwired individuals in attendance.
I especially loved the little moment Kemi and Warren planned before the ceremony where they would hold each other's hands without seeing each other so they could maintain the mystery of that big "bride walks down the aisle" moment but still take a second to be with each other, away from all of their friends and family members and have a private chance to celebrate their love before saying "I Do."
It set the stage for their ceremony beautifully.
I adored Kemi and Warren's ceremony. It was short, sweet and to the point. More importantly, the look of love on BOTH Kemi and Warren's faces as the bride made her way down the aisle left everyone in attendance, including this photographer, with a tear in their eyes.
It was so nice to see two people so close and connected take the next step and celebrate their life and love together.
Following Kemi and Warren's ceremony, the three of us made a beeline to a nice grassy area at the Villa for a few quick formal photos.
As the sun quickly set on us, however, we knew we would have to rush to get bride and groom formals and while I would have LOVED at least another half hour with this couple, given the time crunch I think we got some amazing photos.
I especially loved the photos we took on the Villa's beautiful rustic bridge. It was so nice to see the newlywed's personalities come through in these photos and create shots that I know they'll cherish for a lifetime.
At this point in the blog, I'm going to make a confession. While I loved Kemi and Warren's ceremony and formal photos, what I will remember from this wedding for years to come is what happened AFTER those parts of the day.
It is not an exaggeration to say this: Kemi and Warren had one of the most amazing receptions I've ever seen.
So, what made it so good? Well, for one thing, their venue was incredible. Between the slanted ceilings and amazing uplighting, the mood in the room was top notch. Add in one of the most fun groups of wedding guests I've ever had and it was a party to remember.
On a Monday night no less! I can only imagine what this crowd would have done with a weekend evening celebration.
There were so many incredible candid moments during Kemi and Warren's wedding reception that I don't even know what I would say was my favorite. If I had to choose, though, it would have to be watching their guests, many of whom had never met, coming together like long lost friends and dancing/singing to "Love on Top" by Beyonce like it was a choreographed musical number in a 90s comedy.
Seriously. I am far from a Beyonce fan but watching that happen on the dance floor was one of the most amazing moments I've seen at a reception. It was so cool, in fact, that the song has become on of my favorite wedding tunes this year.
Just thinking about it as I type this blog has me grinning from ear to ear.
Kemi and Warren's wedding was simply magical.
I've been blessed enough to have a lot of incredible couples this year but there's something about the way Kemi and Warren look at each other that warms my heart.
I don't know if it's because the two fit so well together and really bring out the goofballs in each other but this is one special relationship and I'm so incredible fortunate that I got to document one of the most important days in both of their lives.
Couples like Kemi and Warren are why I do wedding photography and, no exaggeration, are an inspiration and constant reminder to me that you should savor every moment you have with the people you love. It's what makes life so special and love so meaningful.
And if you can throw a kickass party to top it all over? Well, it just doesn't get better than that now does it?