Wyndham Newport Hotel Wedding Photos
Jamie & Scott
At its core, weddings are supposed to be the types of days you spend a lifetime dreaming about and, for most brides, that means imagining Prince Charming coming and you two living Happily Ever After. This is certainly the case when I'm working with couples who have an affinity for Disney but I don't think I've seen this idea articulated more clearly and more perfectly than when Jamie and Scott said "I do" back in July at St. Mary's Parish in Bristol, Rhode Island.
Jamie and Scott bonded over their love of all things Disney and they made sure it played a BIG role in their wedding day with a full-on Disney day, including a Magic Kingdom-inspired seating chart, hidden Mickeys throughout their wedding rings, flowers and decorations and even a night-ending projection of the famed Disney fireworks on a wall at the hotel.
But more than any items they made or bought, Jamie and Scott's wedding personified Disney because, looking at the way they held each other and spent the day together, it was clearly true that these two soulmates found their fairy-tale ending in each other's arms.
My time with Jamie and Scott started off in familiar territory as Jamie's bridal prep was at the beautiful Wyndham Newport Hotel. Now, despite having never stayed at this hotel myself, I may as well have a dedicated suite in my honor as I've been in this hotel for wedding preparations more times than I can count. But I never tire of it because this hotel has some of the most spacious areas for a bride to get ready in and Jamie took full advantage.
What I especially loved about Jamie's bridal prep was how stress free the bride handled everything, even as we ran a touch behind with her hair and makeup. This was Jamies' wedding day and we simply weren't going to let the small stuff interfere with the big moments that mattered most: Like when she had a beautiful first look with her father before we headed out to her wedding ceremony.
Speaking of Jamie and Scott's wedding ceremony, I can't think of a more fitting location for a classic "fairy tale" type ceremony than St. Mary's Parish in Bristol, Rhode Island. This is a church I have spent a LOT of time photographing weddings in and with good reason as it really is an iconic part of eastern Rhode Island and has a one-of-a-kind historic look to it.
Jamie and Scott, of course, added their little touches to it but there wasn't much needed to make this ceremony special.
Jamie and Scott's wedding ceremony was a traditional Catholic one and it had all the fixings of that simple yet elegant tradition. What I really loved about their ceremony wasn't so much what was said but what wasn't said.
I loved the little glances they stole at each other and the cute ways they held each others hands or smiled when they thought no one was looking.
While it's certainly true they were focused on God and their religious beliefs in this solemn moment of their lives, I like to think they never lost sight of why they were there in the first place: to celebrate their love together.
Following Jamie and Scott's wedding ceremony, the real work of the day began as the three of us would embark on quite the journey around the Bristol area for their formal photos. For the next two and a half hours, Jamie, Scott and I spent time doing formal photos in front of their church, across the street at a beautiful gazebo, in two separate locations at Colt State Park and two locations at Independence Park.
And thank goodness we had the time we did because, man, the full on summer heat was brutal on this day for sure. To their credit, Jamie and Scott never complained and we got everything I could have asked for and more.
By far the biggest challenge on Jamie and Scott's wedding day was the changing light. Time and time again, the sun came in, then disappeared behind clouds, then came back stronger than before.
It was a fun challenge not to let the elements beat us and, to Jamie and Scott's credit, they were up for all of my ideas. I can't tell you how thankful I am they were.
I'd be lying if I said I wasn't thrilled to leave Colt State Park and head to Independence Park on our way to their reception though. A little bit of shade was just what this day needed.
Oh, and it doesn't hurt that Independence Park was where Scott and Jamie got engaged either. We even managed to grab a photo in the spot where he popped the question, right next to a funky statue.
I love the little touches this wedding had.
With formal photos finally finished, I was excited to get to Jamie and Scott's wedding reception at the Wyndham Newport Hotel. Namely because I couldn't wait to see just how prevalent Disney was in their decor and details. Suffice to say, they did not disappoint.
Up until the start of their wedding reception, Jamie and Scott's wedding day was proceeding pretty much as I envisioned it. But, I'll be honest, I had no idea what to expect from their reception.
Jamie and Scott didn't strike me as the "partying" type so I wasn't sure if they would surprise me or have a more laid back kind of night. Thankfully, I knew moments into their first dance this would, indeed, be a fun evening as the bride and groom shared their first dance to the beautiful track "Every Day I Love You" by Boyszone and threw a fun twist on it midway through the song when their loved ones came up and wrapped them in ribbons.
Jamie and Scott's wedding reception was full of nice little moments but it never felt like a big to-do. They had a couple of toasts, a blessing, a father-daughter dance and a cake cutting — and each of those moments touched on how special this bride and groom are — but the real highlight of the night came moments before the end of dinner as we got a chance to go outside for sunset portraits.
Now, I know what you may be thinking: Didn't you do enough of these earlier? In truth, we could have skipped out on Jamie and Scott's post-dinner bride and groom portraits but I'm glad we didn't as these were some of my very favorite photos of their entire wedding day.
And, perhaps most importantly, we weren't dealing with a crazy bright sun while taking these.
I think my only worry about Jamie and Scott's wedding day was how much of a party vibe we could muster given the marathon day we'd all had and just how much time there was between their 1:30 p.m. ceremony start time and the time their dance floor opened seven hours later.
Within minutes, though, I knew that wouldn't be a problem because this crew came to DANCE. Especially the bride.
Speaking of the bride, she was single-handedly responsible for perhaps my favorite moment of the entire wedding day. In a bit of genius storytelling, Jamie used her history of being bridesmaid TEN TIMES prior to getting married to beautiful hilarity by displaying her former dresses on a coat rack in the reception hall.
I would have been remiss to not take advantage of that for a group shot when I found out all ten of those former brides were in attendance to celebrate their friend.
I honestly think this simple shot of Jamie and her friends might be one of my favorite story-telling images of the year so far. It's just so cute and speaks to how many people adore Jamie to have her by their side.
Of course, as anyone who has been to the park knows, no truly magical day is finished without fireworks and, in a final touch of Disney magic, Jamie and Scott capped their wedding reception off with a projector presentation of the traditional Disney fireworks and a final dance. It was a fitting way to end a perfect day and begin their happily ever after together.
Moments after Jamie and Scott's last dance, I started to pack my gear up and couldn't help but smile thinking of what a special wedding day they had.
While it was certainly a long one with a ton of travel, I can't help but think these two made the most of every minute of a day you could just tell they dreamed of for a lifetime.
Because they're huge Disney fans, I know this is just the start of their magical life together but I'm so glad I was able to help play a small part in documenting it for them to cherish forever.
So thank you Jamie and Scott for a wonderful wedding day. I wish you the best as you move forward in their new and exciting chapter of your lives together.