The other day I had the pleasure of making some engagement photographs of my wedding clients Lisa and Noah at Middle Cottonwood Canyon just outside of Bozeman Montana. For these two, they wanted to feature a special place as the setting for their engagement session. It was here that Noah brought Lisa on their second date for a hike up Middle Cottonwood Canyon. These two have been living in Washington for the last year, Lisa working as a software engineer and Noah working away on his pursuit of a science graduate degree. When it came time to plan their wedding day, choosing their Montana home as the backdrop was a no-brainer for them. These two will be tying-the-knot tomorrow! I’m so excited for these guys! Stay tuned for their wedding photo preview! -M

Click here to view all of the awesome photos from their engagement session

Capitalizing on a recent break in the rainy weather, I met up with Allison and Matt to make some fun engagement photos of them and their pup in the beautiful Hyalite Canyon just outside of Bozeman, Montana.

Over these last few months, I’ve had the pleasure to get to know these two.

They recently moved to Bozeman from Davis, Montana where they attended school as Ecology grad students. Back during my time working in California newspapers, I too lived in Davis and as we got to know each other, we quickly realized we had many overlapping UC Davis friends and shared leisure activities. We quickly hit it off and had a blast exploring the scenic local landscape during our photo session. These two are great.

And their big wedding day is quickly approaching. I’m looking forward to documenting and celebrating them in a couple weeks for their Springhill Pavilion wedding day! -M

To see all of their engagement photos from our session click here.

Last week I was able to travel up to Anchorage, Alaska to photograph an extended Family Day in the Life photo session with my brother Eric, sister-in-law Brandy and their young family. The new Greener heir has been born! My new nephew Paul is a little over a month old and the trip was my first time meeting him. It was fun to embed into the world of a young family’s experience raising two kiddos. Despite the occasional fuss from my stinking cute two-year-old niece Molly, the majority of the time giggles and laughter could be heard throughout the house. These two are natural parents and it was fun for me to help out where I could while documenting their family experience. It’s a cool new thing for me in my role as an uncle. It’s the ultimate long-term photo project. A lifetime photographing all of the fun with my niece and nephew. I’m just thrilled! We had a great time and my arms are tired from holding and bouncing babies! Someday I’ll get dad arms. Here are some favorite photos I made of my family during my stay. I can’t wait until the next time I can head back up. -M

 

Best of Portrait Photos 2017 Greener Visuals Photography Title page

I love this time of year when I can reflect back on all of the fun photos I made of my clients over the course of this past year. 2017 was a blast! I feel blessed for all the new relationships I made throughout the year and for being able to tell candid, creative stories through photographs! Here are some of my favorite Greener Visuals Photography Best of 2017 Portrait Photography that I made during this trip recent trip around the sun. I look forward to what adventures await in 2018.

If you know someone in need of new family portraits, business portraits, headshots, engagement photos or an epic wedding photographer, Greener Visuals Photography is available for all your professional photographic needs in 2018!

Happy New Year everyone! -M

Back in October, I packed up my cameras and traveled northeast to the city of Seattle to make some “Day in the Life” family photographs of Kim and Daniel and their two girls. Upon my arrival into Seattle, we decided to load up the Subaru and make a day trip north to the small coastal town of Bellingham Washington (near the Canadian border) where we explored the beaches, rainforests, parks and the surrounding community. It was great to have another opportunity to photograph this awesome family. Years ago, before kiddo number two came into the picture, I photographed these guys here in Bozeman, Montana as they were traveling through town. I had a great time with these guys. This time it was fun to explore their home turf and a new photographic canvas to work with. Bellingham is a beautiful place. Here are some of my favorite images from my time with them. -M

I had the pleasure of joining the Rigard Family for some long overdue family portraits at Hyalite Canyon near Bozeman, Montana. Jen and Ryan have been friends of mine for years and I was honored when they hired me to photograph their family. We explored the areas around the reservoir and played around in the evening sun light. I was really pleased with how they turned out. Here are some of my favorites from the day. -Mike

It’s amazing to me how busy we all can get wrapped up in our own lives. We are all guilty of it. While my parents are living close by in Missoula, my brother Eric and his wife Brandy are starting their new family in Anchorage, Alaska with their new daughter Molly. My sister has been busy working to finish her veterinarian school in Colorado. The Greener clan has been spread out over the last couple of years and we only manage to see each other once a year. So when the opportunity to meet up last week in Missoula with my siblings, their families, my parents and grandma, naturally I wanted to bring my camera to document the rare family gathering. We were more concerned about hanging out and playing with my niece who is turning into a fun little kid. We kept things casual and I made pictures when the creativity struck. Time flies when you are having fun and living life. Blink and eye and nieces, puppies and the rest of us all grow up. We had a lot of fun spending time together and I will cherish these moments. These are the good times. Here are a few of my favorites. -M

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Hi guys! I’m so excited to introduce to you all my new best friend “Tippet”. I’ve been waiting for her for a long time. My family grew up raising labrador retriever puppies and every Spring we would have a litter of pups in our house. It was so much fun to come home from school and yell “Hey kids!” and suddenly a wave of wagging labrador would run towards me for kisses. Having labs growing up was such a wonderful part of my childhood. My folks have since moved from my childhood Chicago suburb home and have settled into their new life in Missoula, Montana. As I grow older, those familiar childhood memories and nostalgia grow more distant and seem harder to hold onto. I don’t get to go home to my old room or old stomping grounds which makes tapping into those old childhood memories a little harder. Besides having the new companionship, I felt getting my own labrador companion would be one way to have some of those positive childhood experiences enter back into my life. And also just be a ton of fun.

Since leaving home to pursue a degree in Photojournalism at the University of Montana seventeen years ago, not having a dog has been a hole in my life that I’ve been waiting patiently to fill. So, two years ago when I made the decision that I would get my first pet and put a deposit down with Lori’s Labradors in Whitehall, Montana, my excitement could barely be contained. It turned out to be almost a two year wait to get a black female labrador. Turns out it was worth the wait. Last Monday, I finally got to pick her up.

Suddenly I’ve leveled up in adulthood. Now my days are filled with puppy training, praising and dodging those puppy needle teeth. I think Tippet is going to be a fun addition to my life. Keeping me company in my photo studio, accompanying me on my adventures and bringing lots of laughter daily. I’m excited to share future our adventures with you all on here. -M

This past Saturday, Greener Visuals Photography participated in the 2017 A Montana Wedding Event at The Commons in Bozeman, Montana. I’ve been apart of this great annual bridal show put on by the Bozeman Daily Chronicle for the past five years. This year the event was held at The Commons just outside of town. The event is a wonderful place for wedding planning brides to gain inspiration, meet a plethora of talented wedding vendors and a chance for me to meet some excited brides-to-be. As always, I set up my trusty rustic, reclaimed lumber/metal wedding show booth that has served me well over the years. Here are a few photos I made during the day’s love themed festivities. I still have a few dates available for photography booking in the 2017 and 2018 wedding season. I travel worldwide. Inquire for details. The day as a whole, was a blast. So glad I could be apart of it. -M

Back in November, I met up with Jessica and Matt to make some Fall family portraits of them and their 1-year-old daughter Cora. I made maternity photos of Jessica a while back and now that Cora had been born, she and Matt wanted to get their first family photos for their Christmas cards. We headed over to a park near their house in Bozeman where we took advantage of the fallen fall leaves. When photographing little kids, you tend to have brief windows of attention. Most of the time their surroundings hold their attention rather than looking into a camera. It becomes a fun game getting them to smile and look natural before their patience runs thin and they start to fuss. Cora made my job easy. She was nothing but smiles, a trait she no doubt got from her parents. Here are some favorite photos I made during our time together. Thanks for looking, -M

Here are some photos to help you think warm thoughts on this chilly December day. Earlier this summer in between all of my weddings, I made some family portraits of family friends Bob and Sydney and their sons. The two were good college friends of my parents during their time at the University of Montana back in the 1970’s. Great people. I headed over to their grandparent’s beautiful horse property in Livingston, Montana. Horses turned out to be a big theme for the day. I arrived to find a full household of their family glued to the television with intensity to watch American Pharoah Win The Belmont horse race. Before photo shoot began, I joined them in cheering on the moving horse and rider figures on the screen. Their excitement was infectious. I learned that they have a long family history of raising race horses, a labor of love business upheld by their grandfather. A dime tour of their house and backstories by Bob revealed decades worth pictures of celebrated horses, race memorabilia, and memories. It was fascinating. After an exciting finish to the race, we headed outside into the pristine Montana summer weather. Keeping in theme with the day, their sons bridled up their two favorite horses and we walked around the property making some fun family photos with equines in tow. I still geek out on the great light we had that afternoon. Here are some favorite family portraits I made of them that day. -M

 

Southwest Montana had an exceptionally long stretch of Fall colors this past season. I was fortunate enough to be able to get out to photograph all of its grandeur with a few late-season weddings and a couple family portrait sessions like these of my friend Beth and her family. An old friend from my days at The University of Montana, she now works here in Bozeman and they wanted to make some fun family portraits before the rains came. We found some time to go out for a walk in a nearby park on the outskirts of Bozeman. The setting sun mixed with the range of green, yellow and orange colors made for some sweet light to photograph in. Fall days don’t get much better in my book. Here are some of my favorite photographs I made from their family photo shoot. Thanks for looking, -M

Wedding season is upon us here in the Big Sky state and I’ve been having a lot of engagement photo sessions lately. Last week I met up with Bobbi Jean and Chris at the Triple Tree trailhead in Bozeman Montana to photograph their engagement photo session. Engagement photos sessions come complimentary with all of my wedding collections. I like it because it gives me and my clients a chance to get to know one another before their wedding day and make some fun photos in the process. The two brought along their dogs as we hiked and explored the popular Bozeman trail system. Knowing Chris worked as a logger and Bobbi Jean as an employee of Yellowstone National Park, I wanted to photograph them in their element. From their, we ventured over to the wood shop of Montana Wildwoods artist and friend Tom Benedict where we played amongst his juniper tree sculptures. These two were great and I’m looking forward to photographing their wedding at the Old Faithful Inn later this summer. A fun day. -M

To view all of their engagement photos, click here.

For the past 7 weeks, I’ve been making a weekly trek to the outskirts of Bozeman to the Gallatin Valley Botanical farm with my girlfriend Lora to scope out her new puppy and best friend. Ten puppies equal awesome. Our Wednesday visits quickly became the best day of the week for us. Lora’s friends Matt and Jacy, owners of the local Bozeman farm, had a litter of ten puppies and one would soon come bouncing into my life. During my youth growing up in Illinois, my family bred labs on our five-acre wooded property. I have some good family memories growing up around Labradors. Now by association, I would get to be around once again. Awesome indeed.

Before the puppies all went to new homes, I ventured one evening over to the Bozeman organic farm with my camera and made some fun family photos of Matt and Jacy along with their kids and an army of labrador puppies. It’s not often an opportunity like this happens. We had a great time. In the end, Lora got a yellow male and is calling him “Timber”. This will be fun. The dog adventure begins. -M

 

Jessica 2014 Bozeman Montana Maternity Photos

A few weeks ago, I got a call from my friend Jessica asking if I would make some maternity photo portraits of her. This will be her first child and she wanted to have herself and her belly documented. Having never photographed a maternity session before, I was intrigued and happily accepted. It was a fun challenge. We got together in the morning. I brought my mobile photo studio to her apartment and we spent our time sipping coffee and experimenting with different photo setups. I wanted to simplify things, eliminate distractions and make the photos all about her.  I’m all about versatility in my photographs and I want to give my clients options from their photo sessions. From her place, we ventured outside and walked around downtown Bozeman chatting, collaborating and looking for interesting backgrounds. It was so fun to see her excitement. Two weeks out from having her life completely change into her upcoming motherhood. I’m excited for her. Congrats to the mama-to-be! -M

Last weekend I had the pleasure of hanging out with Rachel & James and their excited young labrador puppy Deacon to make some fun engagement photos for them. These two lovebirds got engaged this past December and were planning their California Wine Country wedding later this summer from their home in Bozeman, Montana. While their wedding photos would be in the California sunshine, the two wanted to contrast their engagement photos with the beautiful snowy backdrop of Southwest Montana and hired me to help.  Montana is no stranger to the cold. This winter has been an exceptionally chilly one here around Bozeman often times dropping into the negative double digits. A good thing if you are a skier, (I am) but it can be a difficult task when you are trying to make pictures of people out in the elements and not have them look like they are freezing. Our photo shoot was scheduled a couple weeks ahead of time and I found myself the day before the shoot looking at a thermometer hover around -10 F and thinking my clients will turn into popsicles. Alas, the weather gods were on our side and as we drove out to the Gallatin River Sunday morning, the sun popped out from behind the clouds to give us a balmy 20 F degrees. Rachel and James, unphased and all smiles, bundled up and were ready to go. I love it when couples embrace the unexpected. I think their enthusiasm shined through in their images. We had a great morning adventure exploring the snow covered landscape and making photos. Such a fun day. Wish these guys all the best! -M

Go here to view their entire wedding engagement photos

One of the surprising twists and wonderful honors I’ve been fortunate enough to experience as I grow my wedding photography business is returning clients. In the wedding industry, that rarely happens. Much like age has brought some wisdom my way over the years, outcomes of how I once thought my path would play out, rarely in fact, did so. I’m so grateful. I have been fortunate in ways I never thought I would have had a chance to be. I photographed Gillian and Jeff’s wedding day years ago in Sacramento, California and ever since they have continued to bring me back into their lives to document their special events over the years. For those of you who may not know, weddings are just one of many facets to my creative photographic outlets. Years ago, Gillian expressed to me just how much I made her feel comfortable in front of a camera. I feel privileged that I can continue come back into their lives to document their celebrations. Without even realizing it, I find myself in the role of a documentary family photographer. These two have been huge supporters of my photography from early on in my career.

A month ago, I left Bozeman, Montana and hopped a plane to San Francisco to spend a Sunday afternoon with my old friends/clients to document the new addition of their daughter Miriam. I spent the day documenting a traditional Jewish naming ceremony at their home and the celebration afterwards complete with the portraits of numerous family and friends. Gillian was very clear in what she wanted – as many photos of her little girl as possible. I was happy to oblige. What a cutie. It was a wonderful time. I recognized many familiar smiles from the wedding years ago and realized I had seen many of Gillian and Jeff’s coupled friends back then early on in their relationships. Fast-forward five years and now I had this new window back into their worlds seeing them with kids in tow. Add some good caterer BBQ with sunny weather to boot and you’ve got all the ingredients for a beautiful San Francisco Bay Area fall day. It was fun for me to spend time with these good folks again. My, how time flies. So glad I could be a part of it. -M

To see all of the party photos and portraits click here.

A few weeks ago, I got a call from my cousin Kim saying that she, her husband Daniel and their little daughter Adleigh would be passing through Bozeman on a family road trip and they wanted to have some family portraits made. Having a rare break in the action from my busy wedding season, we decided to meet up and head over to Hyalite Reservoir. I’m a sucker for the outdoors and will always default to nature for my portrait backdrops. It just seems more natural. Pun intended. Lucky for me the whole area is one big scenic postcard. After a sunset dinner of Roost Fried Chicken, a new Bozeman favorite restaurant, we started playing with the light of the setting sun. Again, I wanted to photos to be about them and not their clothing. With the help of my assistant/sister Katie, we made some fun images and laughed all evening at Adleigh’s reactions. Thanks for looking, -M

To see all of their photo shoot, go here.

Finding a window of opportunity with two extra days off from the newspaper this week, I packed up my gear and headed over to Missoula, Montana to visit my family yesterday afternoon. My parents had informed me that my Grandma Jean was being honored for 50 years of volunteering for a PEO (which is womens philanthropy sorority) and they wanted a nice portrait of her. Enter photographer grandson. I wanted to show people the grandma I know and love. The one who giggles at her own stories, the one who cooked our amazing family meals and a the formatable opponent who dominated the countless family boardgames growing up. It was a chance to photograph my second mother. I was excited about this photo shoot. I began by looking over her wardrobe. When making portraits of people, I always want them to wear clothing that is simple and not distracting. Remember it’s about the faces and not the clothing. I choose a solid navy color, non-pattern sweater for her (that also happened to make her blue eyes pop, bonus!) and choose similar color palette for Aca (my grandpa). He is a man that appreciates his flannel. A good trait by any other circumstances except for portraits with other people. I want the viewers eye to go right to the person’s face. not the pattern of their shirt. Different patterns on shirts can clash too easily with each other. Tip – This can be a good thing to remember when photographing your own family. I chose the most simple pattern I could find and set them against a blue piece of sewing material borrowed from my mom. I liked the effect of blue on blue. From there it was all about capturing the interaction between the two of them. They will have been married for 58 years this June. One of the immediate benefits to photographing a family member is that you know just the right way how to make them laugh. It didn’t take long. The end result are photographs I think really captured their personalities. Looking over these again, realized I am really going to cherish these for the rest of my days. So glad I was able to finally do it. Hope you like them as much as I do. -M

Happy New Year folks!

I don’t shoot many family portraits due to being so busy with the newspaper or weddings, but every once in a while an opportunity presents itself. My close friends from college Chris and Molly called me up over the holidays and asked if I would make some portraits of their family and of their new son Jude. They were back in Montana from Davis, California for the Christmas break. I love seeing old friends. I met the crew out at Rockin TJ Ranch just outside of Bozeman where they were staying for the week. The place is a cute little wedding venue during the summertime and served as a quite, cozy place for their family to stay. With temperatures hovering in the teens and knowing I would have limited infant enthusiasm for pictures with Jude, I elected to photograph their family in the large banquet hall where there was lots of pretty light and warm indoor heating. It was a pretty versatile space to work in and I was quickly able to set up a couple different portrait scenes. I had a great time on this shoot and was pleased with the results. Who knows? I may have a future in baby photos. Jude was so stinking cute. What a smile. Thanks for looking everyone! -M