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arkansas wedding photographers

JARED + SARAH // ROMANTIC HOT SPRINGS, AR ENGAGEMENT SESSION

When you have the opportunity to work with a couple who fit everything you love about being a creative person, the experience is sure to be memorable. When Jared first contacted me a few months ago about the engagement session he wanted to plan as a surprise for his fiancee Sarah, his message was so sweet and sincere that I couldn't say no. They had made plans to drive from Austin to Hot Springs for a post-Thanksgiving getaway, and I agreed to meet them there for our session.

We were graced with a beautiful late November day in downtown Hot Springs, and took our time meandering through the streets and chatting. Meeting Jared and Sarah in person was like re-connecting with long lost soul friends. The words "kindred spirits" may have been uttered more than once!

Jared and Sarah are both creative souls who met while working together at First Baptist Church in Austin, TX. Jared is a youth minister at the church, as well as a photographer/videographer, and Sarah is the church's executive assistant as well as a stage actress and mixed-media fine artist. Within moments of being introduced to Sarah, Jared knew that she would someday be his wife. He was completely enamored with her quiet beauty and intelligence. 

Jared and Sarah have a desire to serve all of God's children. They are actively involved in the LGBTQ rights movement, both inside and outside of their church. Jared officiates same sex weddings and facilitates outreach programs for gay youth. He is passionate about insuring that LGBTQ believers have a safe and affirming place to serve God within their community. We had a wonderful conversation about modern Christianity as we shot their session. Things are changing, thanks to humble and caring hearts like Jared and Sarah, who aren't afraid to stand up for what they believe.

I am a better person for having met Jared and Sarah, and it was an unforgettable experience getting to be their photographer. The way they cherish one another is a testament to their faith and the beauty and blessings that will surround their marriage. I wish them many years of happiness and success in their ministry!

 

 

 

 

BRADLEY + DONITA // ROMANTIC SOUTHERN WEDDING at THE BONNEVILLE HOUSE

Hit Rewind...

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flyover photography

Sometimes love reaches out and surprises you. For Brad and Donita, a shared heart for helping others was only a small part of their initial attraction to one another. Brad is the medical director and lead physician at a Fort Smith area rehabilitation hospital -  helping patients who are recovering from recent surgeries literally get back on their feet. Dr. Short is very respected in his field, and judging by how his staff adores him, he's a pretty great guy to work for. Donita is the case manager for the hospital, and when these two met, something pretty special happened.

Donita talks about Brad so lovingly, calling him her rock and her best friend. She told me about how Brad had always been there for her, and that he was her confidant and caring advisor in difficult times. While she thought Brad only saw her as a friend, eventually co-workers convinced her that he was really in love with her, and the rest took care of itself with time. When Brad asked Donita to marry him, she knew that joining their families, their homes, and their lives fully through the bond of matrimony was the best gift she could ask for.  

It is so obvious how close Donita and Brad are to their families, as both sets of kids were very involved in every aspect of the wedding - from creating the cornucopias of rose petals for their send-off, to making up the majority of the bridal party. Hannah helping her mom into her dress and shoes was incredibly sweet to watch, and then Zach escorting his mom down the aisle brought back memories of my own wedding, when my daughter did the same for me. Brad's daughter Lindsey was super fun to talk to - the kind of girl Sa'dia and I could hang out with IRL. And Ben shares his dad's wry sense of humor and smile. I loved listening to his toast!

These two have so many great friends. I'm pretty sure the entire staff of HealthSouth was in attendance, and you can tell these nurses and other medical professionals have such an amazing bond. David, Donita's BFF, served as a groomsman and was hanging out with us almost all day. What a charmer! Not only was his toast sentimental and sweet, he's also the life of the party! At the end of the day, Donita changed into her going-away outfit, and afterwards David had the chance to pull Donita aside to "dance-it-out" to Pink before she escaped to her weekend honeymoon. I was lucky enough to be in the room packing up my gear when this happened, resulting in some fun candid photos!

Brad and Donita's wedding day was absolutely perfect. But most of all, the way that Brad looks at Donita, and how her face lights up whenever their eyes meet shows the nature of their love for one another. It was an honor getting to know these two, as well as their friends and family on that day, and the Bonneville house was a gracious and romantic setting for their beautiful wedding. I wish them so much happiness in the years to come!

Venue: The Bonneville House

Wedding Coordinator: Debbra Severson - Events by Debbra

Florist and Decor: Debbra Severson - Events by Debbra

Associate Photographer: Sa'dia-Luallen-Blattert

Bride's Makeup: Deanna Ferguson

Cake: Confectionately Yours