2018 was a busy year, that’s for sure. I found myself having a baby in April, and then photographing a wedding less than two weeks later. After that, the speed only increased as I kicked into a busy May, June, and autumn time. With a vacation thrown in here and there, it was a blessing that the new baby was a sweet one and that he didn’t give me much grief, and allowed me to sleep accordingly. 🙂
Photographing weddings this year, I saw a few trends which I would like to stay – a focus on family, kind + generous brides and grooms, and a harkening to tradition in both photography and style. My brides are leaning more toward lace, sweet nostalgia, and the importance of having mom or sisters around to help get ready.
Grooms are relaxed and polite, and my couples have an appreciation for my levels of organization and the fact that I never make them hold hands, not smile, and look away from each other when posing.
I found couples that love coffee like I do, couples who are binge-watching the same Netflix shows I watch, and couples who understand that the ceremony is just as (and I would argue more) important as the rest of the wedding day. We were laughing together, getting to know each other, and forming a wedding-day relationship that created beautiful memories and photos that were true to their nature.
Classic is in.
Contemporary is in.
Kindness is in.
My couples have it all, and in them – I have it all, too.
Here are my favorites from this year, with (I tried) a link back to each session or wedding day so that you can get lost in the pretty. Enjoy :-*
Although I don’t quite yet have it blogged, this photo of Sarah from her December wedding is one of my favorite bridal portraits! That fur! That look! Her hair! The tone of the edit – it’s all a win! It can be challenging sometimes to switch between a lot of camera settings quickly, but I love to get the silhouette photo of a bride and her dad entering the church – it’s a classic! This one from Emily + Mike in Irwin
I loved the expressions on Emily + Mike’s faces in this wedding photo as they left the church!
Caroline and Andrew have the cutest little corgi dog!
Brianne and Paul toured me around the neighborhood, and I love the color in this image and the fact that we took it right on the entrance street to their suburban plan.
Katy and Phil had tons of gorgeous color at Hartwood Acres! Maureen and Sam were my very first 2019 couple to reserve their date!
This bouquet (by Mocha Rose) was photographed in a really busy room at Hotel Monaco. I love the simplicity and contrast in the image.
The light on this day for Rebecca and John’s engagement session was just gorgeous, and the extra streaks were added from the screen of my iPhone. Sorcery!
Ambur and Kyle are going to be wonderful to work with in 2019! Loved her mustard colored dress to match the autumn scenery! Kristin and Steve were married at Riverfront Weddings on the dock, and their wedding had a TON of gorgeous details. Love that we got to work on the river. Now they’re expecting a little one – YAY!!
I got to photograph Sarah and JJ’s engagement (even though I am booked for their wedding day), and I love this image because it was taken in a PARKING LOT – ha! That’s always my favorite, when we find beautiful like in unexpected places.
What’s not to love about the HUGE SMILE on Bree’s face in this photo as she hugs her mom right after the wedding?!
I also love this image of Bree walking out of the guesthouse at Armstrong Farms, because it was a really rainy day and the photo has some interesting symmetry and movement.
Juliana and Dan’s wedding was my first one back after having the baby, and they were so wonderful to work with! I love their family!! I love that this photo of them walking on the Oakmont Country Club golf course is just so classic and timeless – just like their wedding outfits.
Kristen’s smile the entire day was incredible. Just looking through her wedding gallery makes me smile and want to be her forever-friend 🙂 This photo is lovely because not only does it have pretty light and expression, but there is also some nice movement – something that always adds to a great wedding photo! Behind the scenes – she’s sitting on the floor of a Marriott conference room with a bunch of cushy meeting chairs just behind her. 🙂
I was married in Heinz Chapel, and I WISH WITH ALL OF MY MIGHT that I had a wedding image of Brad and I like this. I have been in Heinz Chapel a lot, and so lately I am challenging myself to look at the building in new ways. I think it paid off?
I’m a huge sucker for Father first looks. The expressions and reactions that I get to see are priceless! This is from Carolyn and Tyler’s Carnegie Museum wedding in November.
When I first met Hannah and Stephen, I had to bring along Bronco (the baby) because I didn’t have a sitter. I thought for sure they’d be like “no way, lady, you can’t even find a sitter and this is supposed to be your JOB?!”. But nope – they brought me on board for their 2019 wedding and I am SO excited for their big day. I have a sitter for that day. No photographing weddings with babies strapped to my chest 😀
Lighting the inside of the Renaissance Hotel can be hard – ask any photographer here in Pittsburgh! I pride myself on making it look really fantastic, and add in Alexandra’s gorgeous wedding dress – BINGO. Winner.
Another lovely photo from their wedding day really showing off the staircase and pretty light.
I switched this year from Nikon gear to Fujifilm gear for a variety of reasons. One of the reasons I love Fuji gear is that the image files are just LOVELY with a huge dynamic range to the files. This photo right here is shot on my new Fuji gear, and you can see so much detail. That’s incredible!
Adria and TJ’s engagement session at South Park was perhaps the prettiest light I got all October. Sarah and Ryan’s engagement session at Hartwood Acres brought those gorgeous oranges out as well – COLOR COLOR COLOR.
I feel like I haven’t seen Nicole and Eli in ages, since we photographed their engagement on Washington’s Landing back in February!
Ah here I go again with another father first-look reaction photo. What can I say?! I’m a sucker for them! Allie and Zach’s December wedding at the Renaissance Hotel.
Mazel Tov! Michael jumped REALLY HIGH to break that glass after he said I do to Cat! LOVE the action and fun in this wedding photo from their day at Phipps Conservatory! And remember how I saw we had amazing light at Adria and TJ’s engagement session? See exhibit B.
Christina and Peter had some planning snags, but it all worked out in the end! I love this wedding photo from their day, because it’s classic and it looks like they’re walking down this forever-road. (It was taken in the Strip District) And a good veil photo? Yes please! This image of Cat getting ready is one of my all-time favs.
I walked and photographed Jaclyn and DeVaughn for a while just looking for that perfect shot, and then toward the end of our session we had the most insane drip of autumn light peek through the clouds and were able to capture this. I love the light, color, and intensity in this engagement image.
Anna and Chris’ wedding at the Pennsylvanian was the first time I had photographed a wedding there! It did not disappoint! I love this photo because of the light, color, and symmetry that makes it seem like those arches go around and around and around…
Another photo from Anna and Chris’ wedding, where the girls just have this classic beauty, expression, and light. This feels like a painting to me.
Working with Natalie and Grant at their Omni William Penn wedding was wonderful – they had the busiest wedding day of the year! 8/18/18! I love the light in this photo and how they connect together with their body language. I gave them a little direction, and then they naturally look it to here. Always what I’m looking for!
Another photo from Natalie and Grant’s wedding, this is more of a ‘snippet’ photo, in which you can tell what’s going on, but the crop just gives it a different, unexpected look.
Working in Melissa and Jordan’s church was REALLY HARD. I’m not going to lie on that one! The light was challenging, the walls were back, the decor was non-traditional. It wasn’t easy! But there were these cool edison bulb lights hanging from the ceiling that I played with a bit!
Nicole and Jim were married at Monterey Bay – and officiated by Kristin. I love the color in this photo and the happiness on Jim’s face!
This photo is another photo-magic, taken through a prism inside of a colorful church! Image from Sam and Steve’s Destiny Hill Farm wedding
Bridal portraits are my jam, and so is working with whatever light we’re given! On the left, a photo inside of a (somewhat) dark barn from Katie and Matthew’s wedding, and on the right a photo inside of the Omni William Penn Hotel using the window light.
Ring shots! They’re always fun! This one is super-crisp and colorful, utilizing my bride Nicolette’s favorite color into her wedding day photos!
Katlyn and Taylor were so young, gorgeous, and in-love. They have it made! Working with them was easy-going, and I love the movement in Katlyn’s dress in this photo and that it incorporates some classic Pittsburgh architecture with the Smithfield Street Bridge.
Another from Katlyn and Taylor’s wedding, and then a photo that is love with a different crop from Mary and Jake’s engagement session.
I was not standing very close to Rachel as she read this note from her groom. It’s important to give the important moments of the day some sense of respect and privacy! And yet, using a long lens I love this capture as she wiped a tear from her eye reading his words.
Jacky and Oliver was moving from Pittsburgh right after their engagement session, so it was important to incorporate some Pittsburgh tradition! Add in there some great smiles, and you have a winner. https://www.leeannmariephotography.com/2018/07/engagement-jacky-oliver/
A military wedding! Also some great light, expression, and color and I’m a happy wedding photographer. Caitlan and Jarek were a pleasure! I photographed JinSung and Yookyung’s abbreviated wedding at Phipps Conservatory, and loved the leading lines in this image and the light and airy tones – perfect for an August wedding.
Another from Caitlan and Jarek’s wedding, I loved how the banners hung down in the back of the church and used a really wide angle lens to capture them.
This light and pretty-pink ring shot was a favorite this year, where you can see the detail of each flower petal and the feminine colors to go along with her engagement ring and wedding bands.
Samantha and Anthony will be married next year at Allegheny Country Club, but until then we had some pretty light during their morning session at Hartwood Acres.
Alex’s family worked SO HARD on creating the wedding venue of her dreams on their family property, it was only fitting to capture the full essence of their wedding from a teeny tiny little window at the top of some treacherous steps inside of the neighboring farm house!.
Speaking of Alex and Brant’s wedding, this photo is a favorite because of the clean composition and the fact that her grandfather goes out every morning to sit on this swing under the old oak tree and take in the fresh air. Sometimes the simplest of photos have the deepest of meaning.
Danielle and Gary ventured into the woods with me to get this beautiful light, and I thought it was fitting that they would be in there with the fall colors and her sweater to match. Alex and her only sister, Kylie, share a family hug with their dad together on the dance floor. You can tell that he is obsessed with them.
Photographing Pittsburgh proposals! I had a lot of inquiries for them this year, but was only able to sneak a few of them into my schedule. I loved working with these two out-of-towners for their PPG proposal! This photo is all ambient light – no flash here!
Always looking for the perfect light, I worked with Annemarie and Luke to snag this image (standing in the middle of the street) for their Grand Hall at the Priory wedding. I love the simplicity, light, and how their faces just come together so perfectly and her arm bends at just the right amount to feel soft and lovely.
Emily’s parent’s house had the perfect setup for this image, and I planned it in advance. Sometimes it’s all about giving a little direction, having an image to create in my mind, and then watching it all unfold.
Speaking of that – this image from Emily and Eric’s wedding was more about being in the right place at the right time and having pretty light and emotion. I love how softly she touched her niece’s face – you can tell that she is very loved.
We give a lot of credit for Father/Daughter dances, but what about Mother/Daughter?! This image of Lauren and her mom dancing together shows how strong their connection to each other truly is….something that I understand all too well as a mom myself.
My first wedding at River’s Casino, Jamie and Bret snuck away during the reception with me to capture this colorful and contrasty image outside of their reception space. Lauren was just the picture-perfect pretty-in-pink bride. Can’t resist putting one of her bridal portraits in this gallery.
Katie and Michael also had a small wedding in the Downtown area, and her style was just gorgeous! This photo was taken on the Roberto Clemente bridge, and I thought it was a great image that brought out their personalities well! Jamie, a gorgeous dark-haired bride, was perfection with her veil blowing in the wind and her dark hair to draw your attention.
Barn venues aren’t necessarily my comfort zone, but I’m in them a lot. This photo from Betsy’s Barn, where there are big chandeliers, fit my personality quite well. Steph’s dad snuck a kiss on her forehead at the end of their dance together, and I’m glad I incorporated some of the chandelier in there for style.
Another classic image from Stephanie and Matt’s wedding, we had a really overcast and rainy day, but I like that this photo shows you can have beautiful wedding photos even if the sun isn’t out!
This location was REALLY DIFFICULT. Here’s why: The light on Lake Erie was really bright, and we were in the shade. Sideways. Overlooking a cliff. Talk about a challenge! This photo ranks toward the top of my 2018 list simply for all of those odds against me! Add on top of that, Julie and Andrew’s classic style and the simplicity. Are you sensing a theme here?
A bouquet shot that’s a little different from what I usually do – this one is light and bright, so it makes the list for being different that my modus operandi. photo in my Top 9 Instagram Grid for the year. I think all of my followers love it for the simplicity, airyness, and love that you can obviously sense between the two! Christa and Chris had this engagement