Melissa & Paulk’s Wedding Day on the Plains of Auburn

I met Melissa and Paulk for the first time over coffee at Octane in Birmingham and immediately liked them. I loved that they both came to meet with me so that Paulk could also be a part of the decision making, and they were so real, warm and kind. I was thrilled when Melissa called me a few days later to let me know that I would be the one to tell their wedding day story, which would take place at Auburn United Methodist Church and Moores Mill Club, with planning by Invision Events. But first, I would spend an afternoon together with them for their Engagement Session and then later, a Bridal Session with Melissa. Three opportunities to get to be with this sweet couple! What a privilege for me!

In addition to forming a friendship, I’d like to tell you another beautiful result of my getting to know Melissa. She is a nurse at Children’s of Alabama and is passionate about her job helping children. Just a few weeks ago, our dear family friends’ 6th grade daughter underwent open heart surgery. The night before her surgery, I texted Melissa to see if by some crazy chance she would be working the next morning. She immediately texted back that she was. God is faithful as always, and Melissa was there that morning, provided support to our friends and took great care of their sweet girl, even making sure she had some of her favorite treats. I love seeing the beautiful webs God weaves between people to carry out His purpose for His glory. I hope Melissa and I will always stay in touch. She’s a gem! Paulk knows it too!

Here’s some of my favorite images from there wedding day. Enjoy…

 

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Photography: Heather Durham | Planner: Invision Events | Floral Design: Stanley Sistrunk, The Flower Store | Wedding Gown: Kelly Faetanini from Carriage House Weddings | Bridesmaids Dresses: Jenny Woo from BHLDN | Suits: Joseph A Bank | Band: Bobby Moore & the Rhythm Aces | Classic Car: Bride’s family private collection

Melissa’s Bridal Session

Melissa got married this past weekend, so I’m so excited to finally share her Bridal Session we shot a few weeks before. It stormed all afternoon before our session and we were worried it might not happen, but thankfully it cleared just in time.

I love the clean lines and movement of her Gown by Kelly Faetanini from Carriage House Weddings. Just beautiful! Here are some of my favorite shots of this sweet bride…

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Shannon & Joe’s Auburn Wedding

As always, Invision Events did an amazing job planning every detail of Shannon & Joe’s Auburn wedding and I’m thrilled they asked me to capture this beautiful day. Jule Smith Collins Museum of Fine Art quickly became one of my favorite Auburn venues. It is such a beautiful space inside and out! And, as you will see in the images, Lisa Thorne of Thorne & Thistle outdid herself on the exquisite florals. It was a lovely day down on the plains celebrating Shannon and Joe becoming husband and wife.002blog_2blog_002-HDP-Meagher-30_WEB.jpg

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038blog_8blog_050-HDP-Meagher-310_WEB.jpgShannon & Joseph's Auburn Wedding, Auburn United Methodist Church & Julie Collins Smith Museum of Fine ArtShannon & Joseph's Auburn Wedding, Auburn United Methodist Church & Julie Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art

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124blog_4blog_186-HDP-Meagher-864BW_WEB.jpgShannon & Joseph's Auburn Wedding, Auburn United Methodist Church & Julie Collins Smith Museum of Fine ArtPhotographer: Heather Durham Photography | Assistant Photographer: Alisha Crossley | Planner: Invision Events, Julie Bunkley | Wedding Gown: Martina Liana from Ivory & White | Bridesmaids Dresses: Kanali K | Tuxes: Joseph & Feiss from Men’s Warehouse | Floral Design: Thorne & Thistle | Invitation Suite: The Topiary Tree | Reception Venue: Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art | Caterer: Ursula’s Catering | Cake Artist: Peggy McKinney | MUAH: Spa 180 | D.J.: Taylor Zorzi

Hunting Lodge Inspired Wedding [Published Styled Shoot]

I’m so excited to finally share the Hunting Lodge Inspired Wedding Shoot I photographed last November at Sawtooth Plantation near Auburn, Alabama. The inspiration for this styled shoot begin one year prior, when I photographed Sawtooth for Birmingham Magazine’s November 2013 issue. The moment I drove through the plantation’s grand gates, I saw a bride and groom strolling throughout the property. The vision for this shoot begins with the groom, a southern gentleman and an avid outdoorsman, who has expressed to his bride that he wants to be married in the great outdoors, surrounded by the peaceful beauty of nature he so enjoys. She happily agrees.

The long country road that led me to Sawtooth, revealed sprawling land, trees full of fall color and glimpses of deer and turkey peaking through the hardwoods. I immediately had ideas for a refined woodland wedding theme, guest tables by the lake, deer antlers and pheasant feathers mixed in with the floral design, and a nod to southern cuisine, with a dinner menu including wild game. When I contacted the owner, John Cassimus, he graciously agreed to host our shoot at Sawtooth.

Over the next several months, the vision continued to unfold as the most amazing team of creatives was gathered to make my dream become a reality…and even better than I could have ever imagined. The team included the talents of Invision Events, Lisa Thorne of Thorne and Thistles for floral design, Laura McCarty of Marked for the paper suite, and Robby Melvin (Southern Living Test Kitchens Director) for the menu creation, among others. I hope you enjoy the images as much as we enjoyed creating them, and maybe you will be inspired for your upcoming wedding or gathering.

You can also see this shoot featured on Weddings Unveiled and Who What Wear.

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And, we were beyond thrilled to find out we had inspired the fabulously stylish Who What Wear

WhoWhatWear

See the Behind the Scenes Video here.

See Invision Events Blog Post here.

Photographer: Heather Durham Photography | Planning:  Invision Events | Styling: Heather Durham and Lisa Smith Thorne | Floral Design: Thorne and Thistle, Lisa Smith Thorne | Venue: Sawtooth Plantation | Invitation Suite and Menu Design: Marked, Laura McCarty | Menu Creation: Southern Living Test Kitchens Director, Chef Robby Melvin | Wardrobe Styling: Tracey Richey | MUA: Celine Russell | Hair: Courtney White | BTS Video: Main Street Productions, John Deaver | Bridal Gown: Lela Rose “The Cove” from Ivory & White Boutique | Bride’s Earrings: Maria Elena Pettie Crystal Drops in silver from Ivory & White Boutique | Bridesmaids Dresses: Joanna August “Ceremony” from Bella Bridesmaids | Groom’s Suit: Billy Reid “Dorsy” suit, “Holt” shirt and “Heirloom” tie all from Saks Fifth Avenue | Groom’s Watch: Armani | Groom’s Shoes: Broletto Mondello from Nordstrom | Table Settings: Bromberg’s and Williams Sonoma | Rentals: Event Group Auburn and Prophouse Birmingham | Cashmere Throws: Restoration Hardware | Custom Pheasant Cuff Links: Perch Jewelry Studio, Barbara Birdsong | Sweetheart Table and Wishbone Chairs: World Market | Cowhides: Wakefield Design Group, Auburn AL | Vintage oushak rugs  from Thorne and Thistle designs | Other Items from personal collections

Leslie-Ann + Ben [Auburn, AL wedding]

Last month I photographed Leslie-Ann and Ben’s wedding in Auburn with my friend Megan Smalley. The wedding was held at a Methodist church on Auburn’s campus and the reception followed at the exquisite Fountainview Mansion. It was a beautiful wedding with beautiful details, but I think my favorite memory from the day was how sweet Leslie-Ann and her bridesmaids were. They were such a pleasure to be with all day and I had the best time getting to know them! And… it was obvious they adore Leslie-Ann. The prayer her cousin said in the bride’s room, right before it was time to walk down the aisle, was a precious gift.

I include a lot of images in my wedding blogs because a wedding is not just the beautifully styled and photojournalistic shots of the bride and groom. Oh, yes, I do love those; but even more, I love the story of their day…the in-between and behind the scene moments. Some of the details, the bride and groom aren’t even fully aware of until they see their photos. I want to tell those details in my images so they can remember them 20, 30, 40 and 50 years from now.

Here are some of the highlights of Leslie-Ann and Ben’s story as I saw it unfold through my lens. It was a lovely, lovely day.

Leslie-Ann’s bridesmaids gave her a scrapbook of memories.

I love these shots of the sweet prayer before the ceremony. Such a meaningful moment among friends and family.

Leslie-Ann wanted to hear her cousin sing right before she walked down the aisle. The bridal party became quiet in the foyer of the church so she could listen and take in that sweet moment.

The guys had a little surprise in store for Ben. Hope his tux pockets were deep because he spent the rest of the ceremony with them filled.

I always love the goodbye and thank you hugs to the parents.

I’m a University of Alabama graduate…so was my husband, my parents and my brother, but I’ve been down on the plains a few times to visit friends when I was in college. I had been away from my kids alot on Saturdays this summer due to shooting weddings; so this time I decided to go a little early and take them along with me so we could have one last hoorah together before school started. When we got to Auburn on Friday, we went to Toomer’s Corner so I could have some Toomer’s lemonade and the kids could have milkshakes. Once we got our treats, we walked over to see the famous trees. Luke was very concerned about the trees and had lots of questions. That night we ate a yummy dinner at Amsterdam’s Cafe. A great big thanks to Megan’s fun sister Mallory for keeping my kids for me all day Saturday while we were shooting the wedding. They had a great time! On Sunday we did a little more exploring and then headed back home to Birmingham. I must say that Auburn has grown and changed a lot since I was in college. The kids and I had a great time on campus…but, we still pull for the team in red! 😉 Here’s a few shots of my kids from our weekend together in Auburn…

Forgive me for this one, but just had to post because it made me laugh since this was unprompted. After this shot we had to have a talk about good sportsmanship and not booing the other team!