Winter has arrived and it’s snowing in Montana now. I’ve been reminiscing about the past year. It’s funny how time flies when you’ve been having so much fun. 2016 was another great year of documenting the fun memories of my client’s wedding day. I kept busy this year photographing over the Spring, Summer, and Fall. Southwest Montana offers up so many beautiful places to get married and I feel thankful that I was able to continue to explore the hidden pockets throughout. It was such an honor to be a part of my client’s wedding celebration.

I feel so grateful to be doing the candid wedding storytelling photography that I do.

My travels this year took me all over Montana. Traveling up to Whitefish down to Yellowstone National Park and as far away as downtown Chicago, Illinois. I even got to witness a wedding in northeast Mongolia.

In addition to having fun documenting the love, one of my favorite highlights of the year was moving into my new photography studio inside of Gallatin Event Rentals. It has been a wonderful place to house my wedding and portrait photography business. Having an inviting, comfortable space to host my clients and hear their wedding story has been such a pleasure. If you haven’t stopped by already, I’d be happy to give you the dime tour and geek out on photography with you.

Here are a few of my favorite wedding images that stood out to me from this past year.

I am now booking for the 2017 wedding season and I travel all across the country. I’m looking forward to the new smiles and faces I’ll meet and photograph in the new year.  Wishing you all a fantastic new year ahead! -Mike Greener

One of the best perks of documenting the love is that every once and a while, I get an opportunity to travel to photograph the wedding of friends. At the tail end of April this year I had the honor of flying back to my old stomping grounds of Chicago, Illinois to photograph the wedding day celebration of my old family friend Matt and his lovely bride Liz. Growing up in the northwest suburbs of Chicago, I grew up knowing Matt and his family through our local church and the family social circle. A few years back I was able to photograph the wedding of his brother Nick in California so when I learned that Matt and Liz were to be married, I was completely honored when they asked me to photograph it. It is such a treat for me to be able to document the weddings of old friends.

These two lovebirds decided to marry in style in the heart of The Windy City. We started the day getting ready at The Godfrey Hotel and from there took a trolley around the city taking in the sights, dodging the spring rains and making creative portraits along the way. Their wedding ceremony took place at Holy Family Church one of the oldest Catholic churches in the city. A beautiful gothic looking building. As the day transitioned into the celebratory reception, we finally landed at Salvage One, a 60,000 square foot vintage Chicago warehouse covered in fantastic antiques. Great food, laughter, and some epic dancing made the night truly one to remember. I was so grateful to be a part of it. Here are some of the highlights from their wedding day. What a fun weekend. Wishing these two a lifetime of happiness. -M

To see all of their wedding photos click here.

 

Whew! What a weekend! I just flew back from photographing Matt and Liz’ Wedding Day in downtown Chicago a few days ago. Despite a little midwest precipitation, the day was a fantastic celebration, a wonderful reunion with old friends and spirits were high. I had a lot of fun with these two exploring “The Windy City” with their crew of close friends. I’m hard at work getting all the awesomeness edited and toned but I wanted to share a quick preview of some images that have stood out to me thus far. I’m excited to show you all the rest. Stay tuned. Congrats to the newlyweds! -M

 

Whew! I’ve finally started to decompress from my fun, but busy 2011 wedding season. In my new found free time, I’ve been able to go back through my back log of vacation images and a few wedding assistant gigs that I have been meaning to process. Despite my busy wedding schedule this past summer in Sacramento,  I did actually get to attend one wedding as a guest. In between my Montana wedding and trip to Colorado for a Geekfest photojournalism summit back in early September, I hopped a flight to Chicago O’Hare Airport to return to my old stomping ground of Crystal Lake, Illinois for the wedding of my good ol’ high school buddy Karisa. I’m at that age now where more and more of my close friends are tying the knot especially all of my friends from high school living in the Midwest. It’s one thing to witness and photograph the wedding of my clients and another to witness the union of someone you’ve known since adolescence. Karisa is one of the few people I’ve managed to stay in touch with since graduating from high school. When I sought out the outdoor recreation bliss in the Rocky Mountains of Montana for college, she headed east to attend Dartmouth College to pursue her love of acting on stage. As the years have progressed, I’ve watched with excitement and pride as she has climbed that ladder of success in her craft. She is a Renaissance woman whose acting pursuits have branched into small movie roles, commercial shoots, on stage plays and comedy improv troops in the Chicago scene. So it’s only natural that the man she would fall in love with would be from that creative environment. Karisa met Scott when they were cast together four years ago on an Chicago improv group together called Counterproductive Lover. “We make each other laugh, so that’s absolutely a cornerstone in our relationship,” said Karisa. The group continues to regularly rehearse and perform long-form improv together and I even managed to catch a show of theirs a few years back. These days the two stay pretty busy working full time as actors. Scott is coming of his recent success with a show he was in at the famous Second City comedy club and Karisa recently finished up a commercial shoot for US Bank. From what I can tell, acting is not an easy road to venture so it give me a lot of joy to see these two making waves.

I was looking forward to their wedding day. It would be a good opportunity to visit with past friends and also because it would be the first time in a while that I could actually celebrate a wedding properly without having the obligations of producing wedding photos for a client. Karisa wanted to make sure I would enjoy the party properly and not be working it. Alas, you can’t take the photographer out of the boy. I couldn’t resist bringing along a camera and lens just in case I came across a scene worth documenting. And I found many scenes. In between socializing, dancing and drinking in celebration, I made a few wedding photographs that stood out to me during my editing session. I used the occasion to experiment a little but mostly I used it as more of a snapshot approach. Some things worked others not so much. But that was okay. I was thoroughly enjoying myself.

Karisa and Scott decided to have their ceremony and reception in the beautiful backyard of her parents home in Cary, Illinois. When planning their big day, the emphasis was to have it feel very personable and reflect their style. Much of it was put together with the help of family and friends. Karisa designed the wedding invites and all other paper stuff which were then assembled and printed at home. The bouquets were made by family members. Instead of a DJ, they opted for the do it yourself iTunes playlist where they picked their favorite songs. This worked for a while until their computer crashed. (Something to think about for your own wedding entertainment). Luckily, there were no shortages of personel iPods around and her friends took turns spending the rest of the evening choosing songs to play and dance to. For other items at their wedding, they went for the professional approach. They had their wedding photography shot by Chicago based photographer and fellow WPJA member Allison Williams and their photo booth set up by their friend Rob Strong. Karisa and her bridesmaids had her hair and make up done by Jennifer at Jen J Style. The wedding was catered by a great Mediterranean buffet-styled grill called Roti. They also had the great idea for having a local food truck which allowed guests to make after dinner smoothies, wild game sausages, and coffee drinks. You could not have asked for a nicer day. I am so glad I was able to see it. Here are a couple photos that I made from their wedding day. I wish these two all the best! -M

Yay for weddings! Two weeks ago I had the opportunity to travel back to sweet home Chicago for an old friend’s wedding. Adam and his new bride April called me a couple months ago and asked if I would help document their wedding day. I always feel very lucky to be apart of the wedding day of old friends. This one was no exception. From the moment I arrived, it was literally a blast from the past and quickly turned into a high school reunion. After so many years away, living out in Montana and now California, I don’t get as many chances to make it back to home to visit. Adam and I played football together at Prairie Ridge High School and April attended school with my younger brother Eric. Despite a threatening Midwest thunderstorm, the wedding went off without a hitch. It was so great to see so many familiar faces all grown up. I had an absolute great time documenting these guys. Crazy, summer humidity and all.

Here are some of my favorite images from the day. I’m anxious to hear what you all think. This is a mere small sampling of the 4000 images I made that day. I suppose that is to be expected when you have so many old friends around dancing the night away. There are too many good people to take photos of. To see all of the photos from their wedding day go here. I wish these guys all the best. -M