In May of 2016 I shot my first destination wedding in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. Planning to go out of the country for the first time in my life, with pretty much all of the photography equipment I own, was tough to say the least. I packed all my favorite clothes, and a Pelican case with both of my camera bodies and all of my lenses.
The flight was fairly short, getting into the country was easy (although I was asked, basically everywhere, if my very durable, serious-looking Pelican case contained a weapon), and soon enough we had arrived at our hotel. The surroundings at the Zoetry Agua resort are straight out of a painting- I mean GORGEOUS.
Bria and Chad and all of the guests are friends of mine so this was the perfect setting for my first ever out of the country destination wedding. This place was a photographer's dream. It seemed like I was always taking photos with either my camera or my phone. Since we arrived days before the wedding, we were able to relax and have fun; we were also able to shoot some engagement-style photos on the beach, followed by family photos.
On the day of the wedding, I boarded a bus with Bria, the bridesmaids, moms, and aunts to travel to the venue. Once we arrived, the girls started to get ready and I went to check out the surroundings and figure out where the best spots to shoot might be. The Palms Villa is an absolutely beautiful venue - and Val, the wedding coordinator, transformed it into an even more beautiful space. The wedding day went smoothly and the dancing and partying continued until the wee hours of the morning. The next day, as a "thank you," we were all taken on a party boat complete with a DJ, drinks, a dance floor, food, and swimming. These 7 days were so amazing I can barely think of the words. So, since I'm obviously a visual person, I will SHOW you.
The photos and memories made this week in May of 2016 will always hold a special place in my heart. I can't thank Bria & Chad enough for choosing me to go along and capture their memories. Here are a few of my favorites:
A few from our mini shoot on the beach
I love black and white beach photos!!
The guys had a little jam session- complete with "Country Roads"
A candid photo of Chad reading his card from Bria- her wedding gift to him was a trip to Ireland!
Bria opening her gift from Chad... A puppy!
One of the hardest working wedding coordinators I've ever worked with- Val!
And now for some unprofessional photos that also capture the vibe of the week...
There was a momma dog and a bunch of her little puppies who lived on the beach near our resort. I always ordered more food than I could eat so I could save it and go feed them.
It took me a few months shy of a year to write this blog because this trip meant a lot to me and my friends, and I wanted to write it when I had some down time. Man, we sure made some great memories celebrating Chad and Bria. Cheers to the Mr.& Mrs. and thanks everyone for the memories!
West Virginia Wedding, Family, & Lifestyle photographer