Your vibe attracts your tribe— I’ve read that little Pinterest quote before but when I saw it again yesterday, I really let myself marinade in it. I don’t know how it’s happened, but my “bride tribe” this year is so incredible that it makes me want to cry. Every bride this year just gets me. Each one is living a life I admire. I find myself bragging about them. They are all laid back yet they have a sense of style that they are not willing to compromise on. They are all focused on their journey and see their wedding as an opening chapter to their wedding story. They all love their fiancé unconditionally but have not forgotten the group of strong women behind them. They are all the best at what they are passionate about: florist in Utah, budding floral farmer in Texas, PhD of developmental health, prosecuting attorney, pediatric nurse, veterinary technician, pastry chef, freelance makeup artist, nutritionist, IT director, university students, and of course other things I can’t remember 😬. They are travelers, well-read, fun-loving, adventure-seeking, knowledge-craving, have great taste in music, and I swear each one loves Disney as much as I do. They at least pretend to be interested in my Scotland obsession. I can honestly say that each member of my bride tribe I consider a friend and would hang or with them on a regular basis if they weren’t so busy with their go-getting lives... oh yeah, and their husbands. I can’t wait to see how they change the world.
I’m in my car looking down at my dress and finding all of the stains left by Indian food I dropped on myself. You see, I was just at the wedding luncheon of these two and they chose Bombay House in Provo for their wedding luncheon. I thought maybe they chose that location because they love Indian food! Well, yes and it also was where they had their first date. There’s more! They served their guests the first meal they shared on their first date! Thoughtful and intentional = elevated. It gave the luncheon a story behind it. Once the guests heard why this was the location, there was a collective “awe!!!!!” I’m guessing it was around this time that I spilled onto myself.
Any other photographers just get giddy for wedding days for the simple fact that you finally can post the couple’s formal session!?!? Just me? .... ok.
Most people dread rain on a photo shoot. Not me. I love the movement and freedom that a storm can bring to a session. When the wind starts coming and that energy is in the air, it blows away all inhibition and what’s left is a freedom to be genuine and playful.
T-minus 34 days and I’ll be standing in this exact location helping tell the wild and romantic story of a couple’s magically elevated journey to tie the knot. Literally. This couple has opted for the ancient ritual of HAND FASTING. Wonder where the term “tie the knot” comes from? Now you know! It’s an ancient ceremony first seen performed by the Celts of Scotland. Not unlike a ring ceremony, it’s a visual representation of a uniting of two people. I can already see the wind blowing through the silk ribbons in this mystical place. ⠀ ⠀ You don’t have to go to exotic lands to incorporate this beautiful ritual into your wedding ceremony. Plus, it can go alongside any religious ceremony. Bring some magic with meaning to your wedding day! I can help you find legal officiants who can craft a perfectly tailored union for you!
What’s more valuable to you: things or experience? At the gym this morning, The Italian Job was playing in the cinema room and it made me remember and pinpoint the moment I decided that experience is the most valuable element in my life. 2003 and The Italian Job comes out in theaters and I had the vivid thought when I saw a Mini Cooper on the silver screen: “it will be mine. Oh, yes. It will be mine”. From then on, my high school self wanted to upgrade my Geo Metro to a Mini Cooper like you wouldn’t believe.... with a British Flag on top, preferably. Fast forward to 2005 when I was applying to colleges and got accepted to my dream college, University of Edinburgh. It wasn’t a cheap option. In fact, it was insanely expensive. Think Harvard x2. My parents promised that they would pay for any college I got into and so I should not limit myself. They would make it work. It was at this time that my dad also told me that if I stayed home and went to school at the University of Utah he would buy me a place downtown and a Mini Cooper. A MINI COOPER! I was made for that car! No one at the time had one and we had no idea how to get our hands on one but it was an option! As it turns out that would have been a cheaper option. I thought about how I wanted to live my life. What kind of person “adult Sarah” was. Did she just want stuff or did she want experiences? Experiences won out and I went to Scotland. It was the location of my rebirth, my personal renaissance. It’s where I discovered who I really was and what I was made of.... and also where I fell in love. I made the right choice. Fast forward again to 2018 and I now get to work with brides who also value experiences and the journey. In June I’ll be back in Scotland, but not for me, for another bride and groom. Scotland will be part of their journey, too! They will go as a dating couple and leave as a MARRIED couple! Scotland will be the place of their relationship renaissance and no one can ever steal that from them. I’ll show them all the mystical and magical locations that they can only dream of! Do I still look at Mini Coopers and get a pang of sadness? Yes. But I made the right choice.
Watching a storm roll in is one of my favorite pastimes. Watching a storm roll in during sunset while at a photo shoot ... that’s nirvana territory
My favorite weddings are those I leave feeling like a better person for having gone. This was one of those weddings. Everything was intentional and meaningful. It was intimate. Everyone who was there had made a significant impact in their lives and helped mold them into the incredible humans they are today. My favorite part was when Becca’s mom read from a journal Becca wrote in as a preteen. Of course, Becca was mortified, not knowing what was coming or what she wrote so many years ago. Her mom began to read as Preteen Becca described her perfect future husband while simultaneously describing her husband Josh’s every characteristic. Down to the detail! It was such a special and significant moment. Not a dry eye in the room.
Sometimes my body literally aches for this place. It’s funny how ancestral land can have such a hold on me. My kids are even beginning to ask when they can go. I want to share Scotland’s well-known and hidden locations with people! I want to talk about them and tell of the myths, folktales, and history that somehow manage to make this place even more magical. I want them to fall in love here, like I did. I want them to take their love here and re-fall in love with them.... this place can do that. I want to see other people go here so they can feel the same way I do!
My childhood is full of memories of running barefoot through fields and fetching our horses hole-filled apples that were out of heir reach. Actually, they weren’t our horses but they were kept in our multi-acre yard. But to me, they were mine. I named them silly names like “Pumpkin” for the orange one and “Oreo” for the black and white one. When their owner would come and call them their proper names, I’d give the horses a knowing smile. Horses are so intriguing and inspiring. On the one hand, they are these wild, powerful creatures that go where the wind takes them. I imagine them running full speed down a valley without inhibition. Horses are also elegant and refined. Polished and aristocratic. They can be the perfect stately picture. I love that we can all be two things at once, too. We don’t have to be put into a box. Like horses, we can poses seemingly-opposing qualities and embrace them.
My apology/love note to Utah: Utah, I’m sorry. I really don’t give you the credit you deserve. You are a majestic unicorn and I’m so lucky to have you. Your skies are vast. Your mountains are a sight to behold. And 5 national parks?! Just, wow. I forget how amazing you are until I’m not here. I love how every corner of you is like a different world. I love how “undiscovered” parts of you are. I love the fact that people have an idea about you but when they actually see you in person, you blow them away. I like you.
We give brides ALL the attention when it comes to wedding fashion and men kind of get the afterthought. I challenge men out there to make a statement! Express yourself! You don’t HAVE to wear a blue suit and a flower tie (as much as I honestly LOVE blue suits). I want to see more attention getters: tweed, white dinner jackets, tuxedos, textures, layers, personality .... so many possibilities to show your personality and elevate it your wedding! Grooms, it shouldn’t just be your bride that’s turning heads. This is your big day, too! 😍 #portra400 #utahweddingphotographer #scotlandweddingphotographer #ukweddingphotographer
This little slice of heaven was just a small walk away from our bed and breakfast up a path that just beckons you to explore... heather on either side of the path that looked like fields of purple. A place where no cars could go, I stumbled upon a ruined crofters cottage that was now a home for sleepy sheep. Past a graveyard full of mossy stones with engravings of dates on them that are older than my country. With names like “wee Mary”. People died so young back then. What were their lives like? I walked here every day; sometimes twice a day. I loved going alone so no one made fun of me searching for faeries. It just felt like a magical journey should begin here.... it’s waiting for a story to unfold. Future brides, your journey should begin HERE! I’ll come along and show you some cool spots while I photograph the story unfolding.
I see you there, future bride. You’re stressed. Your to-do list is a mile long and if you have to make another decision you just might scream! I want you to take a moment to breath. I want you to take care of yourself and allow yourself to be present in this extraordinary time of your life. Embrace this time and embrace those surrounding you who are rooting for you. You’re about to embark on an incredible journey.... let yourself rest. Cut yourself some slack and just breathe.
When the cold wind is a callin’ And the sky is clear and bright Misty mountains sing and beckon Lead me out into the light .......chase the wind and touch the sky