Jenny and Al only had one request for their Chicago courthouse wedding photography: document them riding the El, taking photos along with way with disposable cameras!  My response?  Absolutely!

We met at Chicago City Hall for a quick wedding ceremony, and Al brought diamond ring balloons for Jenny’s son, which he accidentally dropped, resulting in one of my favorite photographs  🙂  We then ventured to Cindy’s Rooftop Bar at the Chicago Athletic Association for some hot chocolate and a few portraits, then on to the Chicago EL!

Thank you so much, Jenny and Al!  Wishing you nothing but the best!

PHOTOGRAPHERS:

I couldn’t be more excited to announce my Moment-Driven Workshop WEEKEND this October 27-29!  !  This THREE-DAY shooting workshop is designed to help you step outside your comfort zone. You will photograph strangers, learn how to capture moments without posing, and work on what is holding you back as a photographer.  You CAN capture authentic, emotionally storytelling images without posing or direction, and no longer fear getting the camera where it needs to be.  Book before July 31 for a $100 discount!

Tired of posing your couples?  You don’t have to!  Here’s what’s involved in the Moment-Driven Workshop.

YOU’LL LEARN

how to make stronger images, how to capture moments during a portrait session, and how to overcome any anxiety you may experience in documenting and interacting with strangers

YOU’LL RECEIVE

an opportunity to step outside your comfort zone, learn how to document moments during portrait sessions and join a private Facebook group of moment-driven alumni for future support!

YOU’LL PARTICIPATE

in shooting assignments in downtown Chicago documenting strangers. This is not a “stand around, watching Candice photograph models” session. This is a hands-on workshop – the best way to learn something is to do it yourself!

Questions?  Receive a free Strategy Session with me!

 

I love working as a Chicago courthouse wedding photographer because it is such a different challenge from your standard wedding day.   If you choose to get married at the Chicago City Hall, it’s a great way to avoid a lavish wedding with 300 guests.  This windowless basement also includes some amazing people watching, and a long line with lots of smiles.  Some of the most honest and intimate moments I’ve photographed have been at courthouse weddings, and I feel so lucky to be a courthouse wedding photographer and often, one of just a few close friends and relatives in the room!

Samantha and John got ready at the JW Marriott Chicago and walked to the courthouse together.  It was such a beautiful morning, it’s even better when you get to document a lovely bride and groom!  After a quick ceremony with a kind and funny judge, we we went to the rooftop of the Prudential Building for portraits.  Thank you so much, Samantha and John… enjoy your photography!

 

Kerry and Evan‘s Nico Osteria wedding photography explained one fantastic thing they have in common.  These two are in love, and they also love to laugh… something I am a big fan of, so I fell in love with them immediately.  Kerry also asked me to photograph her wedding day yoga class for her bridesmaids, which I also loved!  Their beautiful wedding had some very unique touches that said a lot about them as a couple in love.

I asked Kerry for some words about her wedding:

“Evan and I met on eHarmony under the unlikeliest of circumstances. I had just joined at the urging of a friend who worried that I’d never find my match if I didn’t break my long hiatus from dating. Evan had been dating on eHarmony for some time but had become discouraged and cancelled his account. As Evan waited out the last few days until his profile was deactivated and I entered the dating world again after almost three years away, we were matched.

I instantly fell in love with Evan’s sense of humor; the thing I remember most about our first date is how much I laughed. Evan immediately fell for my love of food, cooking and all things culinary. Having grown up in his mother’s bakery, Evan loved a good meal…and any woman who would order chicken liver mousse on a first date. As we got to know each other, though, we discovered in each other a partnership we couldn’t have imagined. We are an incredible team.
Evan and I both live in Chicago near our families, so having the wedding here was an easy choice. We selected Nico Osteria as our venue after meeting with the incredible events teams of several One Off Hospitality restaurants. Our first date was at the Publican and we’ve spent quite a bit of time touring the OOH restaurants throughout our relationship, so it seemed fitting to indulge our foodie tendencies at one of their properties for the biggest dinner party we’ll ever throw. We cannot recommend Nico, its event planner, Ann Beteta, and the entire staff enough. Our wedding was everything we wanted it to be and we could not have pulled it off without them.
One of the best decisions I made in planning the wedding was setting up a private yoga class for myself and my girlfriends the morning of. I’ve been practicing yoga for 15 years and having an entire hour to center myself, reflect on the gravity of the commitment I was about to make, and enjoy some space before all of the festivities began. Our first look was also a moment that stood out to me because it was a bit of quiet time for Evan and I to connect by ourselves before the ceremony. I also loved having an open mic during our (very lengthy, four-course) dinner. It kept our guests entertained without delaying meal time and allowed many more guests than we might normally have chosen to get up and say a few words.
We were delighted with the photos of our wedding; they really captured the emotion and excitement of the day. We look back on them often!”
Thank you so much, Kerry and Evan!  Enjoy your wedding blog post!

Wedding Consultant: Lisa Wandel, Liven It Up Events

Ceremony and Reception: Nico Osteria

Hotel: Thompson Hotel Chicago

Associate Photographer: Thomas Pham

Florals: Alice Hanson Design

 

 

Chrissy and John surprised everyone at their Chicago tent wedding… no one knew it was a wedding!  What everyone thought was an engagement party turned into a beautiful outdoor wedding, including a dog adoption on site!  The best thing about being around puppies?  Everyone is extra happy!  And one little doggie found a new home, with a wedding vendor!

I asked Chrissy and John to describe their day:

How did you meet and what do you love about each other?

We met when we were 18 our freshman year of college through a mutual friend. Neither of us were looking for a “serious relationship”, but had an instant connection and quickly found ourselves falling in love. We haven’t looked back since. I love that John is clever, romantic, strong, and tender. He is always so generous with his time, actions, and thoughts for anyone who needs him. He is the only one that has the ability to make me feel cherished, beautiful, and loved- all of the time. I love Chrissy for her strong will. She is fiercely intelligent and confident, something that I hadn’t seen to such a high degree before I met her. She challenges me to be the best I can be, and is supportive no matter what the task. Loving each other has always been so incredibly easy because we laugh together, dream together, surprise each other, support one another, and challenge ourselves.

Why did you choose this venue, this city and your vendors? 

We never really thought of getting married anywhere else but my (bride) parents’ home. As a couple and as individuals we have felt so supported and love by our families that it only made sense to get married on land that held great memories, friendships, and reflected the importance of family in our lives.

We tried utilize our community for some of the vendors, all the beer was supplied by our local brewery that was opened by members of our community. The coffee was supplied by our local non-profit coffee shop in town. The cake was made by my sister, and our potted plants and landscaping were done by company whose owner was taught by my mom in SundaySchool. The other vendors started falling in place with the help of Kate at Chicago Vintage Weddings. We gave her our ideas and the vendors did an amazing job to deliver. Vendors – Evil Horse Brewing Company, Edge Coffee House & Roasting Company, Priority Landscape, Hearty Boys Catering, Blue Peak Tents, Atmosphere Events, Soundtronics. One Tail at A Time Dog Rescue

What moments do you treasure most from your wedding? 

The fact that we pulled off the surprise was great. We originally told guests and family we were getting married at a later date and this was our Engagement Celebration. We really wanted to throw a great party for our friends and family with no expectations or obligations of a traditional wedding. Seeing the reactions of our guests and having the opportunity to talk with them as the night went on made the months of planning worth it. I will never forget seeing Chrissy come down the hill with her Dad during the ceremony. It filled me with more emotion than I thought it would, and I think the guests could all feel it as well. The entire thing went by so quickly that I barely had time to look around, but one moment I do remember was looking up with Chrissy while the ceremony was finishing up, and seeing everyone smiling, including our dog laying who was watching from the aisle.

I truly treasure the whole weekend in my heart, but one of the moments that sticks out in my mind is when John’s cufflink broke. He had a mother of pearl cufflink that he purchased for his suit and one of the ends broke when he was putting them on.  Instead of trying to super glue it – my idea- my Dad had a pair of my grandfather’s cufflinks that matched perfectly. I cherish the memory of my Dad putting the cufflinks on John and then helping him with the studs for his shirt. It was perfect.

I also hold close to me the silence my family and I shared before we walked down the aisle. Having surprised my sisters and Dad with the ceremony that evening (and boy were they surprised!), they did not have much time to digest the whole event. John did not want to see me in my wedding gown, so we waited in a separate room until he walked down the aisle. There was a very raw, emotional, and beautiful moment of silence that filled my family while we were all together for the last time before I was married. So much happiness that we didn’t have the words to share, so we were just there together in that moment.

Seeing John’s face as I came down the aisle was incredible. If I could relive that every day for the rest of my life, I would.

 

Thank you so much, Chrissy & John, I had an incredible time documenting your day.  I wish you nothing but continued happiness (and puppies!)

Wedding Planner: Kate Lerman, Chicago Vintage Weddings

Associate Photographer: Chris Murphy

Caterer: Hearty Boys

Florals/Lighting: Atmosphere Events

Dog Rescue: One Tail At A Time

Tent: Blue Peak Tent

Sound: Soundtronix

Refreshments: Dark Horse Brewery

 

I was so excited for Amanda and Brandon’s Los Angeles Griffith Observatory engagement photography session, I watched La La Land on the plane to California!  This was my first time visiting Los Angeles, and I’m happy to have to have had the opportunity to photograph engagement sessions for two sets of clients (including David and Brian!)  It was a beautiful weekend, with terrific light and temperature, which my California friends have plenty of, along with loads of mountains and hills!  We don’t have a ton of hills in Chicago!  🙂

Amanda and Brandon were such troopers to jump at my suggestion we photograph the sunrise!  I met them (and their happy dog, Gatsby) at 5AM and we caught the Los Angeles sunrise in perfect time.  I’m so pleased to share their Griffith Observatory engagement photographs, and even prouder that we accomplished all this before we had any coffee!  We also visited The Broad Museum and the super funky Arts District in Downtown Los Angeles.  I asked Brandon to write a few words about how he met Amanda, his words are included below.  Thank you so much, you two!  I can’t wait to document your wedding!

“Amanda and Brandon met in the elevator at work, not long after starting at the same Los Angeles architecture firm four years ago.  They became fast friends after discovering shared interests in comedy, design and movies.  A year later, Brandon brought Amanda a perfectly timed breakfast sandwich and they have been inseparable ever since.  Brandon proposed in their Los Feliz apartment, surrounded by their art, pajamas, and a very handsome Shih Tzu named Gatsby.  Their love centers around laughter, unapologetic silliness and cheese.

Amanda grew up with a big yard in Lincolnshire, Illinois, and thought it would be the perfect venue for a backyard wedding.  Sharing such a special event with family and friends will lend another layer of meaning to the family home.  They plan to have a big tent, good food, handmade objects, backyard games, and a lot of fun!”

 

  • Brenden - I love the LA cityscape in the background. It must have really worked in your favor to do the engagement photos in the morning, I’m sure in the evening the Observatory is crowded with people.ReplyCancel

  • Corey - Such a gorgeous engagement session! I love the different Los Angeles locations – so fun!ReplyCancel

  • Allison - I think the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles is the coolest location for an engagement photo session. This couple looks like they are a lot of fun and the architecture suits them.ReplyCancel

  • Ashley - Super cute LA engagement session! Love that you took inspiration from La La Land!ReplyCancel

  • Robynn - Hi Candice,
    I love your pictures that Amanda and Brenden. I am a cousin of Amanda’s and would love to put together a collage of photos for them on a pillow as a keepsake for their wedding. I was wondering if I could purchase some photos from you in order to do that.
    Thank you,
    RobynnReplyCancel

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