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2021: Year in Review

The greatest behind-the-scenes moments and silly shenanigans of 2021

140,000+ frames

25,000+ photos delivered

9,000+ miles driven

24 weddings

24 sessions

2 styled shoots

1 happy wedding photographer

This blog post wasn't going to happen. To be honest, I came out of this year feeling a bit like I was hit by a freight train. However, I think writing this will help put closure on 2021 so that I can embrace an exciting 2022!

The year started out like any other year: busy season for weddings picked up in May, we had travel booked to Nashville, and an exciting year to look forward to! However, the year quickly turned south as my dad's health deteriorated in June. He was 93 and we knew this day would come, however nothing prepares your heart for the loss of a parent, no matter how old they are. I'm no stranger to losing parents. My mom passed away in 2011 at the young age of 54. She left a hole in our hearts that will never be filled. The pain of loss has softened over the years, but the hole will always be present. Losing my dad in the middle of busy wedding season wasn't something I could plan for. During my grief, I was incredibly blessed with a community of fellow photographers who stepped in to provide support when I needed it most.

My team and I were in Grand Lake to celebrate with Lilly and Rory, and had planned to drive down the next day to celebrate with Rani and Joseph in Colorado Springs for their big wedding. I received a phone call from my sister early that morning that dad was going downhill quickly. We drove the longest three hours down from Grand Lake to Westminster, and spent the day talking with hospice nurses, making dad comfortable, and spending time as a family together. Brian and I were supposed to be in the Springs that afternoon, but I knew that I needed to be there with family. After hours of deliberation and stress, I decided to call in friend and fellow photographer Lucy (Lucy Schultz Photography). Bless her, she was available on short notice to travel to the Springs and capture Rani and Joseph's wedding for me. Dealing with these types of situations is honestly a wedding photographer's worst nightmare, but the process went smoothly and Lucy rocked it!

Early the next morning, dad was gone.

After pulling myself back together in the weeks to follow, we were honored to have photographed 15 weddings between July and September, and finished busy season with Leticia and Dominic for their amazing wedding in Buena Vista. We capped off the year just two weeks ago with Tya and Zach at the Grand Hyatt for their New Years Eve wedding!

Even in the grief, there were so many joyous moments, belly laughs, photobooth shenanigans, and more than 140,000 photos taken! I was blessed to have Christina Gonzales (McGonzo Photo - newborn extraordinaire) join my team again as my primary 2nd shooter. She's a rockstar with her own business and studios, and somehow manages to find time to be a rockstar for my couples too!

I would be remiss if I didn't give a HUGE shoutout to my other half, best friend, and soul mate. Brian, truly you are the biggest reason I am here today. You are my absolutely the best thing that has ever happened to me. Thank you for your support and love, laughs, and always pouring the wine.

The life of a wedding photographer may seem glamorous. I mean, we get to hop around the world and photograph beautiful people in beautiful places, right? Ha! Only about 25% of our jobs is spent photographing beautiful people in beautiful places. The other 75% is spent editing, marketing, accounting, driving, living on frozen pizzas and fast food, and fighting self doubt. But having amazing couples makes the hard work 1000000% worth it. Knowing I put everything into capturing their special day for photos that will last a lifetime is truly rewarding.

Alright. Let's get on to the fun part. So much of social media is sharing the polished, beautiful photos. What we don't see often is the blood, sweat, and tears that went into capturing those beautiful photos. Or the rolling in the snow, creating fake wind in the veil, or testing lights for the perfect dance floor shot.

I hope you enjoy a few of my favorite behind-the-scene moments! Cheers to 2021!


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