Susan & John’s 50th Wedding Anniversary

What a weekend! Saturday was all about the air of excitement and beginnings at Kasey and Cory’s wedding at The Villa, and Sunday featured long-time friends and family filling the room with love celebrating Sue & John’s 50 years together.

Guests flipped through their wedding album, and members of the wedding party reminisced about their outfits and hair-dos. Sue was 19 and John 25 when they got married in 1967 and now 50 years later they’ve built a life full of family, faith and love.

A toast by the Best Man, and a blessing by the Reverend/cousin.

Yougest & oldest…

It was a beautiful day, so I took some family and the remaining members of the wedding party outside for some pictures – and we had a little fun with it…

Love birds ❤

And back inside for dancing & cake!

And a special serenade by the Groom!

Thank you to the Pennio family for having me along to share in this occasion! Congratulations on 50 years and counting!

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Natalie & Mike – Borderland State Park Engagement Session

Today I get to tell you about an incredible couple and what is one of my favorite sessions to-date! Natalie & Mike showed up for their session ready to have fun and they made each other laugh the entire time. Self-proclaimed “goof-balls,” I was connected with these two by Brides Across America, and I’m so excited to be their wedding photographer in just two months!

It was nice and warm on Sunday evening during our session, with solid humidity levels, and I’ll admit it’s not my favorite type of weather. When I complimented Natalie and Mike on zero weather complaints toward the end of our session, Mike said “I’ll take this over the desert any day.”

Mike came home from Afghanistan just about a month ago, where he was serving as a DoD contractor after coming out of Active Duty. Both he and Natalie serve in the Army National Guard – so it’s no wonder they didn’t even break a sweat. They’re so happy to be together after so much time and distance.

I saw these doors over a year (maybe even two?!) ago just walking around the park, and wanted to put a couple in front of them so badly. Natalie & Mike picked Borderland for their session and I got my wish!

I mean, how cute are they?!

And, for a ring shot!

Thank you Natalie and Mike for a great session! I can’t wait to shoot your big day!

The “First Look”

One of the MANY decisions engaged couples have to make about their wedding day:

Should we do a “First Look?”

What is a first look exactly? What are the benefits of doing a first look? What are the downsides? How do we decide??? Don’t worry, I’m here to help!

What is a first look?

It’s more of a recent thing that modern couples do with their photographer, where they set up a private moment before the trip down the aisle with just the bride, groom and their photographer to capture the moment they see each other for the first time on their wedding day.

Usually the photographer will face the groom away from where the bride will be approaching to start and take photos of the groom anxiously waiting. The bride will approach, tap him on the shoulder and the photographer will capture his reaction as he turns around and sees the bride for the first time and their interactions as an almost married couple. Hugs, kisses, high-fives, tears, jokes and usually lots of compliments about how amazing they both look!

What are the benefits of doing a first look?

1.  Nerves. On such a big, eventful day with a lot of people around, sometimes the nerves can get the best of you, and seeing your favorite person in the world is the only way to calm those nerves. Doing a first look can bolster you because you get a quiet minute (mostly) alone before the vows and celebrations.

2. Timeline. Photographers like first looks because it gives them an extra chance to take photos of just the two of you. Often after the ceremony, with celebrations waiting and antsy family members on-deck, the time for portraits is rushed or cut short. With the opportunity for a first look, we’ve already got at least a dozen keepers of just the two of you where we weren’t trying to wrangle family members at the same time. We’ll even have a little more time to expand on poses after the ceremony!

3. Memories. While it’s a departure from the tradition, a first look can add another special memory to your day. Moments go by so quickly, and this can be an instance when time stops for a minute.

4. Daylight. Depending on the time of the year and the time of your ceremony, we may be competing with the sun to get your portraits in! Doing a first look ensures that even as the sun is going down, we’ve got all the shots we want and takes the pressure off. You want to be able to relax and enjoy yourselves as a married couple. The least amount of stress in that process, the better.

5. You’re freshly dolled up. The first look happens literally right after you’re finished with hair, makeup, and in the dress. Your man is freshly ironed, groomed, shaved, and cologned. Why not see each other and take pictures while every hair is actually still in place? No one’s had a chance to even start sweating!

6. Convincing your Groom. Surprisingly, it’s usually not the Bride who opposes the idea of a First Look… it’s the Groom! He envisioned the “watching his bride coming down the aisle” moment and is attached to the tradition of it, which I totally get. But a couple points that may sway him? The more pictures you have done earlier in the day, the faster your post-ceremony portraits are… the sooner you’re on to eating (!), drinking (!!), cutting loose and having so much fun you forget your photographer is even there! And, you still get that walking down the aisle moment, just with fewer nerves and a better chance of soaking it all in.

Still not convinced? First looks don’t always have to be the Bride & Groom. A first look with the Bride and her Dad is a great idea (and usually make me cry), or anyone who she’s close to that isn’t in the room helping her get ready. I really like the idea of a first look with the Bride and her twin brother, so if anyone out there is ready to make that happen, let me know! 

Another way to “be with” each other before the ceremony is to write each other a letter. They can find a quiet moment to read it before the ceremony, reading words you wrote for them to make them smile and feel your love without you even having to be there. These letters make great mementos and have that vintage, old school feel.

 Perry was SO nervous. Until the moment Zoe made him laugh.

Perry was SO nervous. Until the moment Zoe made him laugh.

Whatever you decide, it will be beautiful and unique to you two as a couple. Remember there’s no wrong way, so go with your gut and do what feels right!

XO,

Mary

Katie & Justin – New Bedford, MA Wedding

I have the amazing organization Brides Across America to thank for helping me find Katie & Justin and for the privilege of shooting their (second) wedding day.

What do I mean by second? Let me tell you a romantic story.

8 years ago, two 20-year-olds were in love. Separated by distance, Justin longed to propose to Katie. He, in fact, couldn’t wait to see her in person. Instead, from his US Air Force base, he got down on one knee and sent her a photo. Ring poised high, he asked her to be his wife… via email. The modern Juliet to his Romeo (but with a happy ending), she said yes and they married young, happy, and simply in a courthouse ceremony in Texas.

Both members of the Air Force, they served their country for 8 years. Once again separated by distance, Justin stationed in Korea, Katie leaned on the support of her best friend since Kindergarten, Ashley, for love and support.

Katie and Justin wanted to celebrate their marriage with friends and family, so what was eight years? Justin was coming home for just over a week before they both moved on to a new life, and new station, in Hawaii, so the timing was perfect. 

Evident soulmates, they’re reunion was heartfelt and their emotions pure.

This time around, their special day was shared with their hometown, New Bedford, MA, Katie’s Maid of Honor Ashley and Justin’s Best Man Nate.

The ceremony featured twin flames, an intimate crowd, and enough love to fill a stadium at Seamen’s Bethel Chapel in downtown New Bedford.

Mr. & Mrs. Miranda (again), they set to celebrating with the assembly of friends and family.

And while their courthouse ceremony was the height of romantic spontaneity, August 25, 2016 still offered Katie and Justin a few firsts.

With their move to Hawaii just days away, Katie & Justin soaked in all they could of the day with all their closest friends and family.

Their friends and family partied almost as hard as they did. Celebrating Justin’s homecoming, their renewed marriage, and big move is a lot to undertake in one night, but they made it look easy.

Best wishes to Katie & Justin in their new adventure together! Thank you for having a second wedding day for us all to share in. It’s a beautiful life.

VENDORS

CEREMONY VENUE: SEAMEN’S BETHEL
RECEPTION VENUE: BITTERSWEET FARM
DJ: DJ DANNY LEVIN
GOWN: DAVID’S BRIDAL VIA BRIDES ACROSS AMERICA 
PHOTO BOOTH: 77 VW Bus Photobooth
 

Vintage Inspired

A few weeks back I partnered up with Leah Astore of LPA Studio on a tennis-inspired fashion shoot. Molly Bello had approached her for a collaboration and it was really kind of funny the way it worked, because we all went to Bridgewater State and worked on the student newspaper together. Molly was a freshman when I was a senior and it was pretty cool to catch up and work together on something again! I hope the three of us can team up again soon. 

So without further delay, more from my first ever fashion shoot, featuring Leah Astore, Olivia Rodbell and Molly Bello – who styled the shoot with touches of modern mixed with her very own grandmother’s vintage clothes.

It was such a blast to shoot with these ladies and try something new! Thank you guys for asking me to be a part of it and sharing your talent with me.

Book now! Easter & Spring Mini Sessions 2016

Newsletter-Header

Easter & Spring Mini Sessions
Saturday, March 5, 2016

292 Center Street (Route 36)
Real Estate Rocks
Pembroke, MA 02359

$115
15 Minute Session
3 Edited High Quality Images Delivered via Online Gallery
5 (5X7) Magnets
Print Release

Spaces are limited!
Book your session now. $50 deposit secures your spot.
Email: marylouisepolleys@gmail.com
Phone: (781) 258-7846

A new challenge for a new year: Hockey Photography!

2 days, 2 sore ankles, 700 photos, and a new love! I took photos at the Mites X-Ice Tourney and as someone who had ZERO experience shooting inside a hockey arena, let alone on skates, I had so much fun, learned a ton, and got some great shots.

These little mites are age 8 max, but I was impressed by how well they played, how much intensity they brought, and, let’s be real, how darn cute they were. It was a mix of boys and girls playing, from towns all around Mass and RI. Two games going at once, the coaches and staff had a corridor in the middle of the ice, so I was able to be on-ice for the majority of the time – and though I could have stayed in my boots, found it a lot more stable to be on skates! So I crossed on-skates shooting off my bucket list (an item I added and crossed off at the same time), and got some action shots from on the ice. I never played hockey, but I was very active in sports from a young age, and I would love some photos from when I played sports – so I hope to capture some of those memories for kids and their families to look back on.

One little girl hockey player asked me if I was a figure skater (in my mind I was just pretty proud to stay upright), and I said “Nope, I’m just a photographer on skates, but I think it’s really awesome that you’re a hockey player.” Her smile could not have been bigger, and she literally made my day.

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The action shots were really fun and challenging in their own right with low-light conditions, but I found myself loving the shots of their expressions behind the masks and catching that moment. Those ended up being some of my favorite shots.

Luckily, I’ll have a lot of opportunities to take more hockey and figure skating photos in my job with an ice sports company, because now that I have a pair of fingerless gloves, I can’t wait to get back in the arena. 🙂