Laura & Axuve contacted me before they even booked their wedding venue inquiring about my availability. After being guests at a wedding I shot for their friends Amy & Drew a few years back they were determined to hire me to shoot their wedding and so they made sure to pick a date that I had open. I was so touched and honored by this-- it was a first in my carreer and I desperately hope that the photographs have captured the event as they wished it to be captured. When I found out about their venue I was intrigued--The Hammond Museum has a Japanese Stroll Garden adjoining the interior space and wedding ceremonies often take place on this tiny little island in the midst of a lily-pad pond, such that the wedding party walks out to it across a little stepping stone "bridge," while guests watch from chairs looking towards the pond. It's a unique and beautiful arrangement for a ceremony and we were distraught when the week preceding the wedding had so much rain that the stone bridge had become submerged to the point that it looked like Laura & Axuve would have to pick another spot in the garden for their ceremony. After emails about rainboots on bridesmaids and galoshes on groomsmen we had resigned ourselves to the fact that plan B would probably be an alternate location, but then it was sunny on friday and the good folks at the Hammond must have rented a pump or something because when we arrived on Saturday to scout it looked totally cross-able with each stone presenting a dry step to cross upon! Everyone was thrilled and the ceremony went off without a hitch. Another thing I loved was that they had an "unplugged" ceremony in the sense that the couple had their officiant ask the guests not to take pictures during the ceremony-- but to be present instead. Laura said later that when she looked out at her guests she saw all their faces looking back and there was a quality of silence and attention that I must say is rare at weddings these days-- usually there are a lot of other cameras and phones clicking and beeping during these moments and I think we all found it to be a heightened experience as a result of the 'unplugged' directive... I certainly got some great 'down the aisle' shots without the normal bunch of phone/camera-guest-arms sticking out, I can tell you that! Other highlights included a choreographed first dance (swing!) number that had the crowd hooting and hollering and a brilliant and spontaneous group hug during the final song of the night, New York, New York! Ok, enough of my writing, on to the pictures! Congratulations to the Salazars! Laura & Axuve, your love was radiant all day and all night and I was so honored to capture this special wedding!

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