Category Archives: Weddings
The Green Event Center
Warning: If you are a parent of teenagers, you may want to skip reading this article completely. However, if you are a hopeless romantic or believer in young love, by all means continue!
You know that guy in your 9th grade English class. No, not the one with the ego as big as the sun, the one you had a crush on with the dreamy eyes! The one you daydreamed about marrying while the teacher read Shakespeare aloud to the class? Did you doodle his name all over your notebooks, or secretly write out your full name in pencil on at the top of your page with ‘Mrs.’ in front of your first name, and HIS last name as yours ~ just to see how it would look in writing ~ and then erase it quickly before miss nosey in the seat next to you had a chance to see it? Sigh! Young love!
How about you guys, do you remember the girl who sat across the room from you in your freshman year of English? The one who made you feel like a million bucks by simply smiling at you as you read your book report out loud to the class. The one who smelled like heaven as she walked by your desk to turn in her test paper. Did you take half of the semester to work up the nerve to say something to her? And when she replied, you felt like you could fly!
Or make a point not to let your buddies know how much you were head over heels for her so they wouldn’t give you a hard time at practice?
BIG sigh! Young love!
Erik & Libby met in their 9th grade English class. However, it wasn’t until just before their Senior Prom that they actually started dating! Awww, young love!
In the months approaching Libby’s 22nd birthday, she had been talking about her desire to go horseback riding. For her birthday, Erik made two of her dreams come true. He took Libby to a place where they could go horseback riding on a trail ride. Along the way, Erik dropped his bandana that had been provided by the riding place. He went back to look for it, and was gone for what seemed like a long time. Suddenly, Libby turned around to see Erik down on one knee pulling out a beautiful engagement ring! “It was super sweet, and caught me 100% by surprise!”
These high school sweethearts were now engaged and planning their dream wedding. They chose to say their wedding vows in Erik’s home church. It had the added historical bonus of both his parents and brother getting married there. Libby found her wedding gown at Impression Bridal, with the help of her consultant, Debbie. The exquisite gown was the exact wedding dress that Libby had always wanted!
The Green Event Center held their wedding reception. The fact that everything was included in the cost, without having to commit to their contracted providers really was the selling point. “The Green Event Center made everything so easy and stress free!” One of Libby’s friends had been married there and spoke highly of the wedding venue. The size of The Green Event Center was exactly what Erik and Libby needed. There was room for a bar and buffet area that was out of the way, and did not take up room for their 110 guests to sit or dance. The design of The Green Event Center happens to be a great place for wedding photography. The rooftop garden is one of its lovely features.
The wedding cake was included with the package at The Green Event Center. It was made by Julie Moncrief. She makes her cakes out of her house and they are extremely delicious. “She was able to recreate a cake that I found online and it was absolutely everything I could ask for!”
All of the flowers were done by a family friend; Stephanie Putnal-Rodriguez. She also does her work out of her house, and worked with Libby to give her exactly what she had in mind.
Erik and Libby described seeing each other for the first time on their wedding day as being nothing short of pure joy and excitement! Declaring their wedding vows and the readings which their grandmothers prepared for them were the most emotional moments of the ceremony for Erik and Libby. At the wedding reception in The Green Event Center, Erik and Libby said that best part was getting to spend time with their friends and family! The DJ also provided a great mix of music for fun and dancing. And finally the young newlyweds took off to beautiful St. Lucia – Sandals La Toc for their honeymoon.
If you are planning the wedding of your dreams, take wise piece of advice from Erik and Libby: Don’t stress out. Little things will go wrong here and there, but if you stress out you won’t be able to enjoy one of the most beautiful events of your life!
I had a pleasure photographing at the Lyceum of Galveston Island in June here is the story of Anna and Seth.
It was Anna’s birthday. She and Seth were at The Melting Pot restaurant for dinner. Anna was wondering if Seth was about to break up with her or had simply forgotten that it was her birthday. He hadn’t mentioned it or gotten her any flowers. At the end of the meal, the waiter suddenly brought out a huge bouquet of flowers with a card! Anna read the card which said “I hope you get everything you want, love Seth” and when she looked up he had the ring in front of her! He asked her, “Will you be my wife?” That will always be a birthday to remember!
As they searched for a location for their wedding celebration, they came across an unusual place on Galveston Island.
They loved the size and feeling they got from being in The Lyceum. There are big, beautiful stained-glass windows, high wooden beamed ceilings, and lovely wood floors. Also, they will tell you that the staff at The Lyceum; Cynthia & Brenda, are AWESOME! The Lyceum is a unique setting in Galveston, Texas for wedding ceremonies and Seth and Anna were glad it was the venue they chose for their special day
Anna’s wedding gown was Enzoani Blue Formosa in Magnolia, her cake was an almond white cake with Raspberry filling, and the groom’s cake was a chocolate cake with strawberry filling made by Fiona Bakery, “By far the BEST cake we have ever had, we will use her as long as she is open!” The bride and groom’s mothers, Anna & Anne did all of the flowers! If people are interested, they are willing to make flower bouquets for them! They hope to have an Etsy store open soon. Seventy-five special guests enjoyed sharing their wedding ceremony & celebration.
When Anna first saw Seth on their wedding day she felt a peace at first, but then started to giggle nervously! He thought she was crying but others noticed that Anna was giggling. Seth was completely blown away & overwhelmed! “It was like seeing your first girlfriend walk down the stairs to take her to the dance, just how beautiful she is it blows you away!”
The most emotional moment for Anna happened right before the doors opened for the bride to walk into the sanctuary. “My cousin, Joel, who walked me down the aisle, said that my dad would be really proud of me. My dad passed away when I was 18 so that meant a lot that he thought I was making the right choice in marrying Seth.”
Seth got very emotional when he saw the doors open and Anna began walking towards him down the aisle!
At their reception, Anna and Seth enjoyed: EVERYTHING! “the photo booth was a blast for everyone who got into it, the people, the music by DJ Spin Majic, the toasts, and listening to everyone tell us about how they know too that we are meant to be.”
They did not go on a honeymoon right after the wedding, as they had too many guests from out of town that they wanted to spend time with. They plan on going to Hawaii around October.
Anna’s advice for future brides and grooms? Elope! Just kidding! No, seriously though, make your wedding what you want it to be. Don’t let other people ruin what you want. It’s your wedding, so stand up for it. Everyone is going to give you their opinion, even if you don’t ask for it. Enjoy your time together as a couple.
Seth’s advice? No matter how hard you think it is going to be when you start the process of planning your wedding, it will turn out much better in the end!
Call your Galveston Island wedding photographer about your wedding TODAY!
Oak Tree Manor
Houston Wedding Photographer
It all started with a map.
It was only Katy’s second week of work. She sat at the break room table studying a map of the refinery, trying to figure out where the sample pick up points were. Andrew came and sat at the break room table with Katy. He took her map and mapped out all the points for her. Unfortunately, Katy was dating someone else at the time but she thought to herself, “He would be cute if he just cut his hair!” Andrew and Katy worked together off and on and became good work colleagues. A year later, in the map of life, their paths crossed again. They were placed on the same shift and began to see more of each other. After a little time, a haircut, and break up, Andrew and Katy became inseparable.
If you notice in their wedding photos, you can see the very same map from work that Katy kept all these years! She even wrote her wedding vows on the back of the map!
Andrew had some special navigating to do when proposing to Katy.
“It is a little difficult to surprise some one when they live with you and they are expecting a ring . . . Katy even knew the delivery date and kept checking the door every hour on the hour and making sure that the doorbell worked. I tried to let her sleep in as much as possible, telling her that a confirmation email was not sent so it must have been delayed.
Luckily, the ring arrived while Katy was sleeping and was quickly hidden away. That night at work I set everything up. The following day, when Katy left to go to the gym, I ran out picked up an ordered floral arrangement, a dozen cake balls from her favorite bakery and her favorite Italian dish and had them all ready for her. When she came home she saw everything and was so excited that she just started hopping up and down not able to eat anything! The food went to waste but the cake balls were all eventually eaten (with help from me).”
Who could resist the beauty and symbolism of being joined together in matrimony under a huge, beautiful oak tree?!? This is what attracted Katy and Andrew to their wedding venue; Oak Tree Manor in Spring, Texas. Oak Tree Manor is located just north of Houston, under the quiet, peaceful oaks on the property of this quaint bed and breakfast on Spring Stuebner Rd. The setting is picturesque for Houston wedding photography!
When they first saw each other on their special day, Andrew said that he couldn’t be happier! Katy was overwhelmed with emotion and began to cry. She was excited and overjoyed! Even though Andrew lost his voice and many people did not hear his vows, Katy heard him loud and clear because his actions spoke louder than words!
100 guests joined the celebration of the Katy and Andrew’s union.
Katy wore a stunningly beautiful gown from David’s Bridal. Gorgeous floral décor and bouquets were created by Dream Bouquet. Cakes by Gina made their wedding cakes, with an especially delicious Italian Cream groom’s cake.
Katy had multiple items for ‘something borrowed, something blue’.
“For my blue I had my shoes, my opal ring, and blue on my garter. For borrowed, one of my garters was borrowed from a bridesmaid and the opal ring I wore was my great grandmother’s. My new was my dress and pearl jewelry that Andrew bought me for my birthday. My old was my great grandmother’s ring and the map of the refinery that I wrote my vows on. Also, my bridesmaids surprised my with a scrapbook and sixth pence for my shoe.”
Their advice for future brides and grooms would be to hire a wedding planner if you can. “They are wonderful ~ especially if you don’t know what you are doing. Plus, they give excellent recommendations such as SGI Photography. Also, try to keep the decision making between you and the groom. Andrew and I were very adamant about no one else influencing our decisions. We picked the dress, the cake, the tuxes, and venue, pretty much everything with little or no input from friends or family ~ just us and our wedding planner, Lindsay. This way we got exactly what we wanted. Most importantly, by the time the wedding day arrives, everything will fall into place.”
Call your Houston Wedding Photographer about Your Wedding TODAY!
The Woodlands Wedding Photography The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel Ashelynn Manor Chapel Ashelynn Manor Wedding Photography
The Woodlands Wedding Photography
The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel
Ashelynn Manor Chapel
Ashelynn Manor Wedding Photography
Having an 8th grader myself, I was a little startled to learn that my recent clients, Katherine & Josh actually met and “instantly hit it off” in the 8th grade at a mutual friend’s party! I know I’ll be keeping a closer eye on those kids at future middle school events!
As teenagers, they used to love to spend time around the pretty bridges around The Woodlands Waterway. They had a special little hide-a-way under a bridge where they would stay for hours. It was only natural, years later, that Josh took Katherine to have dinner at Brio Tuscan Grille in The Woodlands and for a little walk around The Woodlands Waterway to propose to her!
“Josh turned to me and dropped to his knee. Knowing I wouldn’t remember anything he said that night he simply asked the only important question. As nearby people in cars honked and diners cheered I said yes!”
The most important thing to Katherine and Josh when choosing a wedding venue was that it had a chapel. The venue they chose was Ashelynn Manor.
“Ashelynn Manor has a perfect simple white chapel with gorgeous wooden floors and pews. Its beauty is its simplicity.” Not only is Ashelynn Manor a beautiful setting for a wedding and reception, it is a beautiful location from a wedding photography viewpoint!
During the days of planning, Josh always joked he would wear red socks with his black suite. Katherine adamantly forbid it! Just to tease her and get her riled up he would occasionally mention the red socks he would wear on their wedding day. The big day arrives and Josh wisely wore black socks ~ not wanting to upset his lovely bride! Lucky for him, Josh got his wish! Katherine sent him a pair of red socks while he was getting dressed!
As Katherine walked down the aisle toward Josh at the altar, she couldn’t help thinking, “This is actually real! I am marrying my best friend and get to have him for the rest of our lives.” I was a bundle of excited nerves while Josh claims he felt “joyous, calm and peaceful.”
Beauty in the Details
Creative Confections by Roxanne made the perfect custom flavored cake.
Katherine’s exquisite gown was purchased from Brickhouse Bridal.
The flowers were created by Katherine’s brother’s fiancé. She also does work with Exquisite Petals out of Austin, TX. Katherine’s bouquet was made of white roses mixed with esperanza roses for a soft romantic look. The centerpieces were a mixture of purple roses, with berries sprayed a dark purple with light purple stock. Katherine wanted a lush, soft, romantic garden feel.
An antique broach that Katherine’s great-great-grandmother brought to the US was borrowed and pinned to her bouquet, and she painted her toenails blue for ‘something blue’.
On their wedding night, they stayed in The Woodlands The Marriot In
The next day they drove to Fredericksburg, TX where they stayed in a beautiful cabin on 20 acres, called A Comfort Getaway.
Josh’s advice to future brides & grooms: “Pick the right one.” Amen, Josh! That is a matter of top priority! As for a successful wedding day, Katherine advises that brides and grooms build extra time into the schedule of the day. Remember, no one else notices all the little details you think are not quite right. “Don’t let the little things ruin your big day! They won’t even matter the next morning!” Plus, they might even make a funny story that you will share a laugh about for years to come!
Call your Woodlands Wedding photographer about your wedding Today!
SGI Photography Interviewed
By Wedding Photography Select.com
After years of ‘interviewing’ our clients by asking them questions about how they met, how the proposal went down, who made their wedding cakes, flowers, the wedding gown, etc., why they chose their venue, and any advice they had for future brides, it was SGI Photography’s turn to be in the hot seat! Wedding Photography Select.com interviewed us and we found it to be a fun, introspective challenge! Once the results of the interview are posted on Wedding Photography Select.com, we’ll share the link on our website.
For now, we’ll give you a little sneak peak at our answers to some of the questions!
If you’re still searching for your wedding photographer or if you are SGI Photography’s current client, you’ll find some helpful tips and get to know Slava even better!
I was born and raised in Russia, married my wife in 1993, became an American citizen 5 years later, and founded SGI Photography in 1999.
I have worked as a waiter, Russian interpreter and NASA engineer, but found my niche in wedding photography.
Who or what inspires you?
I am the son of a Russian photographer. He was the first to teach me about photography. He was my best friend and my mentor, and although he’s in Heaven now he still inspires me. I’m also moved by good art, movies and music. I listen to music while I’m editing photos and designing albums. My family knows when I’m ‘in the zone’!
If you weren’t a photographer, what would you be?
I wouldn’t mind being a chef! I make a pretty mean pot of borscht!
Why do you think people hire you?
Clients say they are moved by my imagery, and love the way I connect with them on a personal level. Also, my clients hire me because they like the quick turnaround of the results of photo sessions. I treat them as if they are the only clients I have.
What do you think a bride or groom should be looking for and not looking for in terms of wedding photography packages?
Make sure it includes a photo session prior to the wedding day – either engagement or bridal, this ensures getting comfortable w/ the photographer so the wedding day photography goes even smoother. A package that includes an album – getting your portraits in hand as a final product is so much more satisfying and enjoyable than just a CD of images that you still have to go out and make prints from.
Can you share how you’ve made your wedding photography business a success?
Early on, I had great mentors that were gracious enough to allow me to assist them, being observant of marketing in general. I constantly educate myself and never stop reading about others who are successful. Being honest & open with people, answering emails and contacts w/in 24 hrs, delivering products on time or prior to the expected time. Treating people the way you would want to be treated as a client.
Whose wedding would you love to shoot?
I would love to be able to photography my daughters’ future weddings, but that’s going to be tricky as the father of the bride!
Do you have an approach to a wedding?
I approach each wedding as if it were the first time I was photographing a wedding. I never get tired of it. I build a relationship with my client that is sincere, and end up being treated like family! I stay on my toes, and react calmly to the unexpected.
Can you share a favorite wedding photo of yours? Maybe there is a story behind it or a reason it’s your favorite?
“The dancing bride” was actually a bridal portrait done at Rice University. At the end of the session, I asked the bride to do a couple more spins before she left. It helped that she was a dance instructor and could spin gracefully and remain poised I took three consecutive shots! The result was a dynamic, fun portrait of a dancing bride! I love how the light fell on her dress, and the joyful expressions on her face.
If you shoot any other types of photography, can you share one of your favorite personal images for us and tell us why it’s your favorite?
I took my oldest daughter to Russia with me and on the way back to the States, we stayed in Paris. We did a lot of sight-seeing and I photographed the Eiffel Tower at night. It is special because I remember the quality time my daughter and I had together.
Do you have any goals for the future photography related or otherwise?
I plan to travel more and photograph destination, international and celebrity weddings. Prince Harry, give me a call when you’re ready. I’ll clear my schedule!
Are there any other wedding photographers whose work inspires you, can be a well known photographer or somebody you’ve stumbled across?
Jerry Ghionis’ ability to walk into the most ordinary environment and create extraordinary imagery from it; I like his simplistic approach to light. I’m also a big fan of Doug Gordon’s “flow posing”. His system transformed the way I work with people today.
Proudest moments so far? Photography or otherwise.
When I became a father to my four children, the day I became an American Citizen and that I truly have the opportunity to do what I love.
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