Wedding Belles: Getting Ready at Salon Amara in Valparaiso

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Jamie and Andrew's wedding was all about family.  The day started out at Salon Amara in Valparaiso where the Wedding Belles - Jamie, her mom and Alison and Skylar got their hair and make up done.  The staff was extremely friendly and it was a pleasure to shoot there.

The Getting Ready part of the wedding day is all about capturing moments.  All the mirrors at Salon Amara were a blessing and a curse for a photographer.  On one hand, I could capture some laughter by pointing my camera at a mirror in another direction, but I was also seen a mile away for direct photos.  Nonetheless, I think we came out with some great photos of this wonderful family interacting...


Our bride Jamie is 29 years old and holding.  However, I happened to catch the headline of this bridal magazine while she was getting her pedicure done.  Nothing wrong with a little future planning!!  :)

Jamie was both ecstatic with joy and full of nervousness while trying on her veil...

Another use of the vast amount of mirrors at Salon Amara.  It's almost time to go back to the Radisson in Merrillville to get the wedding dress on.

I love capturing candid wedding photos, but a few happy posed pictures will look good in the wedding album as well...

Special effects can add fun and variety to the wedding photographs when done sparingly and with taste.  The above image adds a touch of motion blur to the bride's dress for a somewhat dreamy look.

Allison and Skylar were Jamie's fun loving young bridesmaids.  They have a lot of character and I wanted some photos that conveyed that.  Here they are in the lobby of the Radisson hotel relaxing with their feet up.  Yes, Allsion would continue to wear her red Chuck Taylor sneakers with her black bridesmaid dress for the rest of the day.

Skylar's mom gets in on the fun....

Jamie's mom helped tie her dress with daughter Skylar for these traditional wedding shots...

The wedding belles were just about ready for the limo to come and take them to Deep River Park for the outdoor wedding.  

My assistant and I had already noticed the temperature drop and the dark clouds in the sky.  Check out the next posting for a sampling of a rainy day wedding.  Just remember that no matter how dark the clouds get or how much water pours out of the sky, it will never damper the amount of love that is in the air.

Winter Wedding: Getting Ready in Lowell, Indiana

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I hadn't been to Lowell in a few years and was surprised to see how it's been built up since I was last there.  I do remember the wonderful old Commercial Avenue with all of the shops.  This is where Downtown Hair Studio is located and where I met Elizabeth for the getting ready portion of her winter wedding.  The sun was out and there wasn't any snow falling (yet).

The folks at the hair studio were very accommodating as were the bridesmaids and family members.  I remember them constantly laughing and I definitely wanted to capture that for my "fly on the wall" images.

Whenever I go to a public hair salon to start the wedding day photography I have to be careful to not photograph the regular customers!!  :)  As the staff feverishly worked on hair and makeup, they also clued me in on who was who as did our bride Beth.

We really only had two props at hand - one was a box of donuts in which I had to take an oath to not take pictures of.  The other was was a coffee table book on wedding hairdos that went from a "fake" set up shot to being passed around by the girls and looked at constantly.  Hey, glad I could be of some assistance!!

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Here is our bride Elizabeth, as calm as could be.  Her and her bridesmaids were definitely one of the least nervous sessions I've done.  They were definitely ready for the big day and it was all smiles all day...

Okay, so maybe it wasn't all laughs!!  Here is grandma as the emotions take over.  They were happy tears for sure...

Our junior bridesmaid seemed to enjoy all the pampering...

A vote was taken on a possible up-do for Elizabeth's mom.  Here are the results...

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As soon as Elizabeth gave final approval to the Downtown Hair Studio staff on her hair, it would be time for lunch and then off to St. Matthias Church in Crown Point.  This is where Elizabeth would put on her dress before walking down the aisle.

This next image was taken a few moments before the ceremony was to begin.  I think it is one of the prettiest shots of Elizabeth from many that day.

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Here is one of Beth and her equally gorgeous sister and maid of honor, Becca.

Before the bride arrived, my assistant and I were taking formal shots of the groom and groomsmen.  I will share these in my next posting.

To view the entire set of Getting Ready images, visit the following link:

Winter Wedding: Getting Ready in Lowell, Indiana