September 4, 2017

The Horse Ranch Wedding in Coldstream Sampler

Sampler Wedding

If you have a horse, and are thinking of bringing it to your wedding, the answer is yes, do it. If you’re wondering if you should have your wedding at your horse stable, I’d say do it as well. This is one of the biggest samplers I’ve made all year, because we had so many incredible photos I couldn’t wait to share. I was a happy photographer today.



That was also the inspiration for my cover photo. This one I like, it has both the bride and groom. The one I chose, though, depicts the day accurately. We got married up in the hills, in the woods, with horses all around us. That was the day. For some people that’s the perfect day. We’re getting ahead of ourselves, though.



We begin this smokey morning at the Beauty Bar. Our bride had gotten the engagement ring welded to the wedding ring. For folks who work with their hands a lot, this is a pretty safe choice. With the amount of diamonds in this one, the safer the better. Later, our groom said, “I got 25 extra diamonds put into it. I wanted her to have the most diamonds.”

I’d say mission accomplished.


I loved the flower choice. It went with the dresses. Shoes were a wise decision too. I have this reputation I’ve built up, I guess, of getting dirty and hiking in order to get the perfect shot.




Back at the guy’s house, we were all recovering from a night of partying. Pizza was shared and pool was played.



Following a youtube video, our groom followed a tutorial to tie himself an Eldredge Knot. With a little bit of back and forth dialog between him and the phone, he managed this fancy tie knot. Downstairs, the groomsmen were steaming their shirts.



Back at the Beauty Bar, dresses were being wrapped. Nerd Note – I used my powerful 660ex flash to overpower the pot lights. The trouble is, the pot lights are LED lights – that’s hard overhead lights. You’ll get shadows just below the nose and eyebrows if you shoot with natural light, and any wrinkles that there are will have shadows, making everything look much worse. A good flash will fill in all that, leaving you with smooth definition on ivory colour skin. Of any accessory in my camera bag, I find my flash the most valuable.




The bridesmaids were busy lacing up the back of this curvy dress.



Before long, we had a kinda nervous bride. Nervous or not, we were ready for our first look.



By the time we arrived, that look was still nervous – but I could see the excitement in her face.



This is what I love. Expressions, moments, expressive people. Normally guys aren’t expressive. This one is.



I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone smile so big. It was from ear to ear. He couldn’t stop grinning.



There was a lot of kissing, and a classic car. In this leafy green park, we checked every box.



As a photographer, colour theory is huge to me. Remember my remark about the flowers earlier on? This is why I was so excited about their colours. Take a look at how they fit with the bride’s dresses.



They match perfectly. I love it when things match.



I snapped a few more photos, then we all piled into my car to head out. We had a ceremony to attend at a horse ranch!

Before we talk about that, though, I want to take a quick second to bring up the subject of table settings. This was something else. Chatting about the wedding over messenger, our bride had told me how she spent literally months collecting table pieces. It was amazing to see all this effort pay off. I was honestly blown away.



First off, the headpiece. Our groom had contacted a glass sculpter in London, England to make this piece. That was a six month project alone.



The place holders had cards with names on them.Nautical knots held them in place. And mason jars, with holes for straws and candy in them. And the muffin bar….



That sound is of every diet ending on that day. Later, this table would be crowded with guests sampling each kind of cupcakes. The variety was astounding. This is only a few elements. Everywhere I looked, lovely knick knacks gave this reception so much personality. And I’ll stop there, because if I keep going I’m going to start talking about how great the band was. So let’s get back to the ceremony.



The ceremony was lush. A backdrop of pine trees and wandering horses greeted us.  It was, after all, a working horse stable. The lovely Esther Pearson officiated. I couldn’t have asked for a prettier settings.




You can see it all in their faces. Before long, I had a beautiful bride and groom on my hands, all ready for more photos. And….a horse?



Yup, a horse with flowers and baby’s breath on the mane. Although I’m not a horse person, it’s purely because I don’t think they’d like it in my tiny apartment. If I had some land, you bet I’d have a horse.



As we walked to our next photo spot, off the distance, we noticed another horse spying on us.



Immediately, our bride ran off to try and make friends. Horse people are like that, I’m told.



We took some lovely photos in the woods. We had a low sun, and the smoke gave us captivating oranges. I’d go on, but it’s late. 1:30am late.

There’s a full album coming out in about 3 weeks, though. It’s a wonderful story I can’t wait to put together for you. We’ve got some hilarious candids, and teary speeches. The first dance was pretty great too.





This is just a sampler, though, a sneak peek of the photos I capture today. If you personally know the bride and groom, feel free to contact me here. Let me know who you are, along with the bride and groom’s name, and I’ll make sure you get a link to the finished album!



If you know someone who’d like to see this sneak peek, feel free to click one of the share buttons on the top or  bottom of this entry, to share and tag them! Although I try to get the word out, a lot of family members and amazing bridesmaids and groomsmen don’t know about these samplers!



Thank you for reading this far. I put a lot of time and work into these sneak peeks so it’s great that you’ve taken the time to read all this!


If you’d like to keep a picture, even on mobile, just click it and it will open in a separate window. You can save it from there.

Lastly, if you’d like to stay updated, feel free to follow me on Instagram, facebook, twitter, or Tumblr for frequent updates. Talk to you all in a few days!

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