ericamay photography blog: thought studio.

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Kansas City Wedding: Kim and Kyle October 25, 2009

October is such a great time to get married in Kansas City — the trees are gorgeous, the weather is typically pretty mild, and… well, I got married in October so I’m a little partial to the month. :) Kim and Kyle chose a late October wedding because they wanted the trees to be at the peak of the fall season. It was perfect timing.

Kim and Kyle got married at Good Shepherd Catholic Church, with a reception downtown at the Aladdin Hotel. Their day was very relaxed and laid-back, which was perfect for these two and their guests. Here are some of my favorites. First, their rings on a gorgeous fall tree!

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Their ceremony was beautiful, and I really loved photographing in this church, which is a circular design and has some great natural light! Kim’s dad walked her down the aisle:

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Kim and Kyle got to sit down for part of the ceremony. It was fun capturing their glances during the ceremony. :)

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Some more ceremony favorites:

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Husband and wife! Yay!

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After the ceremony, Kim and Kyle scheduled in time for creative portraits downtown before the reception, which was amazing! Here they are with the wedding party:

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I love their reaction here to something their friends said. :) So happy!

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Now get ready for a big set of portraits. :)

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These two are so sweet together. I love this one:

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24 is the date they got married. :)

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The wonderful Kasie helped me shoot this wedding — here is one of the shots she took! I love this wide-angle view!

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More of my faves:

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The next two are Kasie’s shots — I love both of these. 

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We found this great wall with pretty fall vines. These next shots are mine:

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Their reception was on the 16th floor of the Aladdin Hotel in downtown Kansas City. It was set up to be a reception where people could visit with each other and relax to the tune of some great live music. :)

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It’s a tradition in Kim’s family for family members to design squares of fabric that are all sewed together in a quilt for the couple. Here’s one of the quilt squares, designed by a grandmother:

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More reception shots:

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Kim and Kyle, congratulations on your marriage. I hope you’re having an awesome time in London or France, wherever you might be when you see this. :) Thanks so much for asking me to be a part of your wedding day.

Friends and family who want to view all of the wedding photos can click here for the online gallery. Sign in, and you’ll be notified via e-mail when all of the images are available online!


Kansas City Wedding: Emily and Josh August 4, 2009

One of the things I love most about having a photography business is the opportunities I have to meet really amazing people from all over the place! I have the best time getting to know people — and sometimes it requires doing that from a distance! Emily and Josh both live in the Washington, D.C. area, but were planning a Kansas City wedding (it’s her hometown), so I got to know them from a distance… and really got to know them on their big day! :)

The day’s events took place at St. Patrick’s in Kansas City, Kansas. We started off with Emily doing the finishing touches…



Jeff’s detail shot:


Since they had several hours between their ceremony and reception, Emily and Josh opted to not see each other until the wedding ceremony. Their timeline was great, and still allowed for a great amount of time for portraits in between. So, Josh’s first look at his bride was during her walk down the aisle.

But first, Jeff caught a few shots of the moments right before the processional — I love these of the bride waiting for her turn down the aisle!



Josh walked his mom down the aisle:


And then Emily’s dad walked with her to meet her groom:



I loved this ceremony. The church provided a great backdrop for their traditional Catholic ceremony, and I love the shots we captured of their emotion, the whole scene, and the general excitement of the ceremony.





The next three images are Jeff’s view of the ceremony:




More of my favorites:



One more of Jeff’s ceremony shots:


Emily hugging her dad towards the end of the service:


Husband and wife! :)


The wedding party jumped in a limo and we all headed to Wyandotte County Park and Lake for outdoor portraits. The day could not have been more beautiful.






The ladies:


The guys:


I loved this white fence that wrapped around the golf course area. We waited for a nice fluffy cloud to move over the harsh, bright shining sun in the early afternoon, and it obliged. :)



Some more of my favorite bride/groom portraits… Emily has a great smile that just lights up her whole face!






The wedding party:


The guys wanted to play on some of the playground equipment for their photos… of course, I said yes.


Emily was not to be outdone, however. She climbed onto the jungle gym in tall heels. :)


So joyful!


Emily and Josh wanted a few more fun/casual photos on the playground…


…and so did the groomsmen… :)


The rings!



Emily’s bridal bouquet:


The reception was held at the church in its community center. They had great personal touches, bright colors and a fun atmosphere for their reception. The centerpieces were all painted by Emily’s 5th – 7th grade students:


I love the toasting time at receptions. It’s always great for fun reactions — I love how joyful they are, in response to the maid of honor’s toast:


The bouquet toss…


And the garter toss (seriously, can you feel the fun in these??)… :)


Their first dance as husband and wife! The first one is sort of fitting, because Emily and Josh met during their college years at Notre Dame — it just so happens that the church’s school’s mascot is also the Irish (maybe not the Fighting Irish, but it’s still fun!). :)



Jeff captured this one. It’s so romantic.


And one more of mine:


There are a lot of great shots from throughout their day — I loved how much emotion and excitement everyone had all day! It was definitely a joy to be a part of this special wedding. Family and friends of Emily and Josh, stay tuned for the entire gallery which should be posted online sometime next week!

Congratulations, Emily and Josh! Enjoy life as newlyweds!


Preview: Emily and Josh’s August Wedding August 2, 2009

More to come… very soon. For now, I just wanted to apologize for the lack of blog posts last week and give you a little preview of what’s in store from Emily and Josh’s wedding — a fantastic way to kick off August! :)

Here’s a shot from their wedding portrait session at Wyandotte County Park:

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Stay tuned for more!


Kansas City Wedding: Lisa and Ben, The Carriage Club and Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church July 28, 2009

I love my job. Have I said that here lately? Well, I do. I absolutely love that I get to be a part of the love story for amazing couples. Lisa and Ben — and their fantastic family and friends — reminded me of just why I love my job. The people. This wedding was such a joy to be a part of, because Lisa and Ben are obviously so in love, and they have an awesome support system of family members and friends who are cheering them on through every chapter of their love story.

Their wedding day this past weekend began at the Carriage Club in Kansas City, where the ladies were getting ready.  I always love getting to see the bride, bridesmaids and moms hanging out before the big day — it’s one of my favorite parts. Lisa was all smiles from the time I arrived — and she has a gorgeous smile. :) Yes, she made my job easy!

In this photo, Lisa was chatting with her mom and Ben’s mom… and I think taking a sneak peek out the window to see if her groom had arrived yet. :)

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Check out the detail on Lisa’s dress. Beautiful.

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An emotional moment with Lisa and her mom:

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The flowers were absolutely stunning. Heather with Botanica did an amazing job on the floral design. I loved the classic beauty of the floral arrangements. Here’s the bridal bouquet:

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Jeff shot this wedding with me, which was fantastic as always. :) He grabbed this shot of Lisa making a few finishing touches, and then the one following of Lisa and Ben during their first meeting, outside of the Carriage Club.

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Lisa and Ben opted to do their portraits before their ceremony, and even scheduled extra time for portraits downtown (which I obviously love!). First, they met at the Carriage Club and we had some time for a few portraits inside the beautiful venue.

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Lisa. Is. Stunning. :)

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And her groom… well, he looked awesome in his tux and bow-tie!

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We headed downtown for portraits with the wedding party to Liberty Memorial and the Washington Park area next to Union Station. It was great for a variety of shots with greenery and architecture.

Lisa’s cathedral length veil made the bridal portraits extra fun. Add a little bit of wind and we have some dramatic shots of a gorgeous bride.

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The sweet couple:

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Lisa’s sister did an awesome job with her maid of honor duties! The bridesmaids’ dresses were all custom made — aren’t they great?

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Lisa’s satin dress was beautiful, and had  a long row of rhinestones all the way down the back. The details were gorgeous. Here it is in a full-length shot:

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The whole wedding party:

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More portraits of Lisa and Ben:

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This one in black and white is Jeff’s:

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These are my shots:

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The ceremony was at Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church in Kansas City, Missouri (close to Crown Center). As we all know, I love shooting in churches with cool architecture and old details. This church was built in the early 1920s. Jeff took this shot of the outside as the guests were arriving:

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Here are more floral details — I am a huge fan of flower balls lining the pews in the aisle of a church. These were perfect:

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Lisa’s dad walked her down the aisle:

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Jeff’s view:

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A few of my favorite ceremony shots:

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Jeff took this one of the organist:

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And he also took this shot of Lisa and Ben walking back down the aisle — married! :)

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Afterwards, we did a few more portraits outside of the beautiful church building.

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Then it was time to head to the reception! :)

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The reception was at the Carriage Club, and I can’t even begin to say enough good things about this venue and the people who work there. It was a wonderful location for a wedding reception, and the staff was incredibly helpful and attentive to details. Also, did I mention how gorgeous it was? :) The space was lovely, and the details were so well done.

Jeff’s shots:

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The table setting (with more gorgeous floral arrangements):

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Each place setting had a menu, with their monogram that they carried throughout in several different elements.

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Lisa and Ben also had individually wrapped gifts for each of their guests — boxes of Russell Stover chocolates (which is fitting, since they are headquartered here in Kansas City!).

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The wedding cake was yet another beautiful detail. Sandy with Creative Cakes designed it, and she did a wonderful job. I couldn’t stop taking photos of all the details on the cake. The second shot is Jeff’s — again, notice the monogram.

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Fun reception shots:

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These are Jeff’s. First, the saxophone player from the live band — The Karen Davis Project.

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I love this great silhouette shot of Jeff’s:

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Another one of Jeff’s:

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The first dance (this is my shot):

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A few ring shots we took during the reception. First, my shot of the rings on the ledge of the fireplace. The second shot is Jeff’s, also on the fireplace.

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And, I leave you with two shots that Jeff took (seriously, he is so great!) of the reception venue at the Carriage Club. Bonus points if you can find me in the first photo below. :)

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It was a gorgeous wedding filled with beautiful, fun people. This is why I love my job. :)

Lisa and Ben, congratulations on your marriage. Thank you so much for asking me to be a part of your special day.

Family and friends of the couple can click here to view all of their images in an online gallery (or sign the online guestbook and be notified once the images are all available).


Kansas City Wedding: Ashley and Garrett June 23, 2009

Ashley and Garrett have a long love story. They started dating as freshmen in high school — yes, high school! — and tell a story about love at first sight. I love photographing couples who have been through years of memories together, who understand each other like nobody else ever will, and who love each other in a way that demonstrates their devotion to everyone around them. Ashley and Garrett are that kind of couple.

Their wedding day forecast never called for rain. Not once in the week leading up to it did the forecast call for rain. So we planned an outdoor session at the park for their “first sight” and couples portraits, and had elaborate plans for an hour at the park before heading to the church. And then, it rained. But you know what they say — rain is good luck on a wedding day. :) If Ashley and Garrett needed luck on their side (which they don’t!), I think they got a few extra doses of it on their wedding day. Being the great bride that she is, Ashley said, “No problem! We’ll move it inside!” so I called the Marriott hotel on the Country Club Plaza, who were so kind to give us permission to shoot in their lobby for Ashley and Garrett’s portraits. It was perfect.





The lobby was so cool and trendy — I love these shots in the booth!


A big thank you goes out to Chris Hsieh of La Brisa Photography for coming in to second shoot for me!! I’m going to share some of Chris’ shots here, too. Here’s his take on the booth scene:


After the hotel lobby, we headed out to the church… with one quick stop (in the rain) at the park. We found a nice natural umbrella underneath some gorgeous trees. I’m so glad we stopped! First, I couldn’t help but grab photos in the Escalade limousine. I love this shot:


The park was so green from all the rain:



Chris working some photo magic!


This one is Chris’ shot. I love how Ashley is looking at Garrett!


A few of my bridal portraits at the park… isn’t Ashley just gorgeous?? I love her deep brown eyes.



After the park, we headed to the church where we did family and wedding party formals, and then the sun came out! :) So we stole Ashley and Garrett away for a few quick photos in the church’s garden courtyard.


The rings (shot with my new 105mm 2.8, for you photographer types):


The ceremony was gorgeous. Church of the Resurrection in Leawood has a lovely wedding chapel (with great light for photographers!). Their traditional wedding ceremony was beautiful. While I was photographing the processional, Chris was grabbing the behind-the-scenes shots. I love this one of Ashley and one flower girl and ring bearer pair (they had two sets!):


And this moment of Ashley and her dad right before he walked her down the aisle:


Ceremonies are my favorite part of the whole day, and Ashley and Garrett were just too cute during their vows!



The gorgeous chapel:


Chris’ view during the ceremony (I love Ashley’s expression):


So happy to be husband and wife! (This one is mine):


Waiting for the bride and groom’s send-off:


I love this shot of Ashley’s parents! Isn’t her mom just beautiful? See where Ashley gets it?? :)


Too cute:


And Chris’ shot of Ashley blowing a kiss to family members (super sweet):


Their reception at the Marriott in Overland Park (the one at I-435 and Metcalf) was so elegant. They put a lot of thought and detail into their reception decor and events, and it was lovely. A few detail shots for you. The first one is Chris’ photo, the others are mine:




Ashley’s dad gave a great toast, and then took his wife out for a spin on the dance floor (I love watching the parents at receptions! So cute!).



First dance as husband and wife!



There are so many other fun photos from throughout the day… all of those will be available in Ashley and Garrett’s online gallery. Friends and family, click here to sign their online guestbook and you’ll be automatically notified when the rest of the photos are available! You won’t want to miss these! :)

To the lovely bride and handsome groom — thanks so much for asking me to capture the moments of your special day. It was a beautiful day, celebrating beautiful people! :) Best wishes for a happy life together!


Kansas City Wedding: Beth and Geoff May 26, 2009

I can’t believe Beth and Geoff’s wedding has already come and gone. It was a gorgeous day, with gorgeous people. I’m going to try to be short on words here and let the photos tell their wedding day story.

We started off the day with the gorgeous bride getting ready:


Beth and Geoff didn’t want to see each other before the ceremony, so their first sight of each other was during Beth’s walk down the aisle. I absolutely love this shot Jeff (my Jeff) captured of the bride as she waited to walk down the aisle with her dad.


The next few are my shots of Beth’s dad giving her away:



Their ceremony, at Blessed Sacrament Church in Kansas City, Kansas, was a beautiful and moving traditional ceremony, filled with amazing vocalists and instrumentalists (Beth was a vocal performance major at K-State).


Jeff’s shot of the entire sanctuary (isn’t it beautiful?):



Husband and wife! :)


Jeff’s shot of the church… amazing!


After the ceremony, we had some time for family portraits at the church and then headed out to the City Market area (where Beth and Geoff will live in a really cool loft!) for a portrait session of the happy couple and their wedding party. It couldn’t have been better.


I love Beth’s cathedral veil:


The girls (my shot):


Some details — the rings and gorgeous bridal bouquet:




We all had a chance to visit Beth and Geoff’s new loft downtown as well. We, of course, took a few photos in their loft, in the building, and around their building. First, on their prized pink vintage couches:



In the hallway:


And outside:



I love these two. They even let us steal them away for a little stroll and photo session in the surrounding areas — it was… awesome! :)




Their reception was held at Painted Hills Golf Course in Kansas City, Kansas. It was a really fun time, full of people mingling, talking, laughing, eating and dancing. Just what a reception should be. :)

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It was also Geoff’s grandpa’s birthday… so they celebrated with two cakes. The first, a birthday cake. :) The second, a wedding cake (featuring a super cute cake topper so unique to their wedding theme — kissing birds!).



The tosses always make for entertaining photos. I love both of these reaction shots.



Beth and Geoff, I hope you’re having an awesome time in San Francisco! Beth, you’re the first bride to ever text me during the honeymoon! That’s why I love you. :) Jeff and I are excited to catch up when you get back and take a visit to the awesome AMC Main Street Theater. 

For friends and family, click here to view the entire online gallery on Pictage (or pre-register if the photos aren’t posted to be notified when they are!).




Sneak Peek: Beth and Geoff’s Kansas City Wedding May 23, 2009

Awesome wedding today. I’ll be showing you much more from this wedding — but for now, I promised Beth a little sneak peek before they head off for their honeymoon! Here are a few from our portrait session at City Market in downtown Kansas City!





Enjoy the honeymoon, Beth and Geoff!! I’ll have the full feature blog post up SOON! :)