Justin and Nicoya's wedding was definitely the fastest booking I've ever taken; from the time they contacted me, until the time of their wedding was just under a month!
Nicoya told me "We like to step out of the box. We don't really do things traditionally." And so it was! With just a handful of their closest family and friends in attendance, and the rest of their friends clueless to their engagement, this "wedding" was really something more like an elopement. It was so fun and laid back! Nicoya had said "As long as I have a dress, and we have someone to marry us, everything else that falls into place is just an added bonus!" No one was freaking out about hair or makeup or timelines, or about which second of the song they should be walking down - in fact, there wasn't even any music at all. I loved the simplicity of everything!
They stood on the terrace of Heron Hill Winery and read each other the most heart-felt, handwritten vows. His kids stood beside them and grossed out when they kissed. She smiled big and constant and laughed at all his jokes. And when they moved the celebration down the hill to Snug Harbor on Keuka, they laughed and toasted and celebrated with friends!
Justin and Nicoya - it was an honor to be able to capture your day! Your love is sweet and vibrant, and I wish you many years of life together!
I had so much fun with Jeremy and Brianne on their engagement shoot, even though it meant spending several hours freezing our booties off. January in Upstate New York is brutal in a good year, and though this year gave us fairly mild weather, I still consider them real champs for sticking in out!
We stomped all over downtown Rochester, climbed a parking garage, and even laced up some skates during the shoot!
Little bits and pieces of Jeremy and Brianne's story came out in our consultation meeting, in emailing back and forth, and throughout the time we were together for the shoot, but I wanted you to hear their story too so here's a little recap of their love story that they wrote up for me! :)
While in Poughkeepsie, Jeremy asked if Brianne wanted a drink, and she denied him. About a month later, Jeremy was dressed as a banana and Brianne was dressed as a cowgirl for a Halloween party and he asked again if she would like a drink, this time she agreed (must have been the banana costume. ;).
It could be said that it was love at first sip!
Throughout the next 6 months, they were able to get to know each other better before Jeremy moved back to Buffalo, NY and Brianne continued school and coaching at Marist. For the next few years, it was a long distance relationship -- traveling almost every weekend to see each other. In the fall of 2014, Brianne moved to Buffalo as a "leap of faith" for their relationship. They spent the next 11 months spending every waking moment together - running half marathons, going to the movies, traveling to visit family etc.
Since Brianne had never been to the Big Apple, they planned a trip to New York City! Jeremy asked her parents for their blessing months before the trip, which is when he planned to pop the question through a special proposal plan!
While in NYC, the two of them were quite the tourists, visiting the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, Empire State Building, FAO Swartz, Central Park, the MET, the Today Show, and they even watched Mama Mia!
Jeremy had planned to propose on day 2 in the city but didn't work out quite as planned. Brianne had a list of "requirements" before he proposed and one of the things she had expressed was that she really wanted a photographer to capture the proposal when the time came. Jeremy had contacted a photographer in the city, but the photographer never showed! - which is why the proposal never happened on day 2, attempt number 1.
On day 3 in the city, proposal attempt number 2, Jeremy wanted to propose on the top of the Empire State Building after a fun day of touristy things, but Brianne was very tired and wanted to go back to the hotel.
On Jeremy's 3rd attempt, he took Brianne to Central Park to get crepes. Much to her surprise, he had other plans. Jeremy found a quiet, romantic pond in Central Park as the location to propose! As soon as he started to confess his love, they started bawling, and in the process, he grabbed the wrong hand. He got down on one knee and asked her to marry him! Through all the emotions, she said "Yes!"
A random stranger captured the moment, but Brianne never got her crepes! (until four months later) :)
So excited to be a part of this couple's big day come July!
The other day, my friend stopped by my house and as I greeted her, she thrust a lovely, full-bodied succulent wrapped with a glittering gold ribbon into my hands and proclaimed "Happy Businessversary!"
I grinned and we chatted about the fact that I had taken the first of many baby steps to starting this whole business thing nearly a year ago! Immediately after she left, I got on my Facebook page and scrolled back through the posts looking for the exact date she was referring to. Honestly, I had completely forgotten that it had been a year, but I needed something good to celebrate, so here I was, searching. Blog posts, seniors, wedding sneak-peeks flew down my page until I finally came upon the post I was searching for.
March 28, 2015.
"Hey friends! I'm currently accepting bookings for spring/summer 2015! I'm available for weddings and engagements, senior photos, family and maternity photos, or whatever need you might have! Willing to travel. Shoot me an email at email@example.com for more info!"
It doesn't sound like a very significant post looking back, but it felt significant in the moment. I think it was more the thought process behind it that was significant than it was about the actual words that I posted.
I can still tell you the exact table I was sitting at in Prince Street Cafe as I hit "publish" that night. I can tell you what the streets looked like - it was wintery and dreary and just before dusk as the streetlamps began to light up the city. I can tell you about the conversation I had with a stranger an hour before. I can tell you where I was that morning and what I was feeling in that moment as sent that message into the cyber-world of your Facebook newsfeed.
It seems silly now. But at the same time, it WAS significant. This was a milestone for me personally and an inauguration for my business as LYNDSI Photography!
Of course, this wasn't exactly what established me as a business. In the following months, I faced many of the real aspects of legitimizing a business like filing a DBA, talking to an accountant, and getting a tax license - ya know, the fun stuff. :)
But it was a step. It was an open commitment; a proclamation to the world saying "Hey. I'm ready to do this. Wanna do this with me?"
And here we are a year later and a mile deeper.
Reflecting on the past year of business, I can't say its been the best year of my life. Its been hard. I've cried a lot. I've questioned myself and doubted my ability to be a business owner. I've faced more discouragement as an artist than I ever have.
But I think even as hard as it has been, its been equally RICH and FULL and GOOD.
I'm deeply grateful. And THAT'S what I'm actually here to say.
Thanks for going with me on this journey. Thanks for reading this and maybe even caring. Thanks for not leaving mean comments on my social media pages (even if you thought them.)
If you're reading this.
If you've looked at even one of my photos this year.
If you've been my buddy on Instagram. (Don't even get me started on their new algorithm. Cryyying tears of sadness over my late-favorite app!...but I digress.)
If you've let me take YOUR photos.
YOU'RE THE REAL MVP.
Happy One Year, pals.
I'm still just super honored and blown-away by the story of how this couple found me! This sweet couple is from New York (like, the city), but they're getting married in the Finger Lakes this July at the beautiful Glenora Wine Cellars! Long story short, they booked their wedding with me, schedules aligned just so, and I happened to be in New York on a completely unrelated trip over the time they were looking to have their engagement photos taken. Of course I was thrilled that everything had worked out the way it did, and we scheduled a leisurely Saturday morning in November to get together and do this engagement shoot thing.
We met at their favorite coffee spot, 12 Corners in Chinatown, and sipped some coffee while we made introductions. As they laid out their story in a few short minutes, I could tell already that I was so excited to work with this sweet couple!
They had picked the route that we followed for our photoshoot, taking me through some of their hometown streets, pointing out the best restaurants in the neighborhood and the cafe's that they recommend. We crossed all 1.3 miles of the Manhattan Bridge on foot, stopping to shoot as the opportunity presented itself. And when we reached the other side, they proceeded to give me the low-down of the DUMBO - Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass area. They took me to some fabulous colorful walls they had scoped out and I couldn't even get enough! All cities EVERYWHERE need more colorful walls!!
Next we stopped in at West Elm, which they tell me is their furniture / home decor store of choice. (I was in furniture heaven.) This particular location has a small cafe inside where we refueled with Brooklyn Roasting Co. (yes more) coffee and probably one of the best donuts I've eaten in my life, by Dough! (really craving that lemon poppyseed donut again rn.)
We walked around a bit more of the city before parting ways, but I left with the biggest grin on my face. I had almost forgotten I was on a photoshoot, because it felt like I had just spent a Saturday morning around the city with old friends.
I'm beyond excited for their upstate wedding this July!
My good friend Jamie is a dancer. She's currently off somewhere on the other side of the country in school doing cool things with her life, but when she was home for the summer, we got our heads together, came up with an excuse to hang, and made this shoot happen. Because it was a personal project, I didn't prioritize it and didn't edit the photos for a while. But I recently wrapped it up and realized again what a babe she is and had to share.
It all took place on a Friday in April, with the trees in full-green but the heat of the south not yet awakened. Victoria was brave enough to hike back through the woods and across a couple of creeks to the lush, secluded first-look spot that she had chosen and the springtime weather was perfectly accommodating, only raining on us once, in-between picture times. The soft, muted colors she had picked for her day accented the new life of the springtime-season with perfection.
Jonathan and Victoria's day was beautiful and sweet and celebrated by all. From the way that the bridesmaids interacted as they brunched together and began to ready themselves for the day, to the eager anticipation of the first look, and throughout the food and festivities as everybody gathered in the old Livery Stable just off the town square, there was a quiet sense of blessing and life and celebration woven through the day.