I’ve been thinking back on the experiences I’ve had during the last five weeks of the Bozeman Front Porch Project, I find myself overcome with absolute gratitude.

Through the unwavering support of my Bozeman community, the project has been a huge success!

Still, there has been so much to process personally and collectively as a member of my community.

While the world and my photography business was forced into a holding pattern due to state COVID-19 stay-in-place directives, I saw a lot of uncertainty and fear with all the drastic, fast-moving changes that we were experiencing as a community and nation.

Along with the uncertainty of how I would support my photographic livelihood moving forward, I also was dealing with the realization that my grandmother was being admitted into hospice for her end of life care.

An ironic twist to an already surreal time in our world.

In late March, I was at home with my family in Missoula and supporting my grandmother the week before stay-in-place directives kicked in. It was during that time, I came across some favorite family photos that I had made of her throughout the years.

With the end of her life nearing, those photos had suddenly become priceless, captured memories that brought up so many wonderful emotions of love.


How many of us have made excuses over the years to put off making the time to be present with our families and to celebrate them now in this stage of life through photography?

I think we’ve all be guilty of it.

Yet once those loved ones are gone (or government-mandated stay-in-place separates us, we would do anything to be back in their presence to savor their cherished expressions that encapsulates who they are – just one more time. Good storytelling photography can be that bridge to tap into all those emotions we hold dear towards our loved ones.

In this time of social distancing and uncertainty, I wanted to be a remedy.

It was around the time that we admitted my grandma into hospice that I was looking for a path to give back and help my community in any way I could.

I realized that while we may be socially distancing from our neighbors, we also get to experience the precious moments of togetherness with our families, loved ones, and pets during this time of unpredictability.

That was something to celebrate.



While the front porch project was not an original idea, I viewed the simple concept (that started on the East Coast) as a local opportunity.

An opportunity to address the mental health impacts of the pandemic, a chance to help change the narrative from one of fear to one of focused appreciation of our relationships – a strength for so many during this time.

Best of all, I saw it as a possible conduit to raise money for the non-for-profits assisting the helpers in our community.

From the chaos, the Bozeman Front Porch Project was born.

Created as a little something to uplift the mood of our community while maintaining safety precautions photographing from afar.

A chance for families to contribute to a good cause and to create a small keepsake to remind them of the loving individuals that give their life meaning.

After all, family is everything and is worth celebrating right now!



It’s amazing to watch a good idea gain traction and grow into making a difference.

As a result, I’ve spent the last five weekends celebrating fifty-five families throughout Bozeman from afar while raising money for The Bozeman Area Community Foundation and the Greater Gallatin United Way.

In total, we raised $2915.00!

Words can not express just how grateful I am to all the families that supported this fundraising project!



This pandemic has uprooted so much in our daily lives and many have lost loved ones along the way, my grandmother included.

The struggle it seems is far from over.

But this time can also be viewed as a gift – showing each one of us the healing, supportive power of our relationships.

If we choose to, it’s a chance to refocus our attention on all the good things that we have to celebrate in our lives at this very moment.



As the sun set upon Bridger Canyon Drive this past Sunday evening, I was wrapping up the last family portrait of this project. The family happened to be my friends Sky and Tara who have been spending their social distancing racing against-the-clock to finish their DIY home remodel and move back in before the arrival of their first child due at the beginning of June.

Of all the families I have photographed out front of their homes these past weeks, I thought this final contrasting scene – the excitement of a young couple in love and on the cusp of starting their new family contrasted with the stressful chaos strewn about their front yard, (a necessary step for the construction rebirth of their home they will raise their family in) – was a hopeful conclusion to the Bozeman Front Porch Project.

Like them, and each family I photographed we have all been juggling a wide variety of emotions and personal challenges depending upon our circumstances.

I think this situation has shown all of us that in our shared, sheltered experience, we can foster personal connections and together begin to heal our community. For many, we’ve discovered a new appreciation for one another. This pandemic has shown us just how important our relationships really are in our lives.

The power of our relationships gives us the space to laugh, to cry, to grieve, to experience our fears in a safe space, to celebrate, to heal, and to be accepted for who we are.

A reaffirmation to know that we are loved even when we are apart and that our loved ones have our backs.

Together, our relationships, nurtured with the foundations of love, will help each of us get through any trial life throws at us. That knowledge fills me with hope.



In Closing:

It was only fitting that I make one last family portrait for the Bozeman Front Porch Project – my Bozeman family.

My labrador Tippet has been my traveling companion on this journey with me from the start. Without her, this pandemic would have been a much more difficult, lonely road to navigate.

To my dog, I am grateful.

To my family and friends, I love you and I am grateful.

and for the generosity of the families in our Bozeman community, I am eternally grateful for your support throughout this project.

May all of us cherish this time of togetherness with the ones who matter most. Brighter days are ahead for all of us and when this storm passes, I’ll be here to help you celebrate your loved ones through candid, creative, storytelling photography. Thank you Bozeman! -M



Family portraits from afar to raise money for those in need.

The enthusiasm and outpouring of support for the Bozeman Front Porch Project during this time of social distancing, has been incredible and I’ve decided to offer another weekend round of front porch sessions to continue raising money for the Bozeman Area Community Foundation.

Last weekend, fourteen gracious Bozeman families participated in the second Bozeman Front Porch Project from afar to celebrate their loved ones, be apart of a community art project and raise money to support the Bozeman Area Community Foundation during this unsettling time in our community and country.

Together we raised $700.00 for them.


There has been a lot of uncertainty with all the drastic changes we’ve been experiencing as a community and nation these past few weeks.

Everyone is feeling the impact in one way or another due to the current health and economic crisis.

While we may be socially distancing from our neighbors, we also get to experience the precious moments of togetherness with our families, loved ones, and pets during this time of unpredictability.

That is something to celebrate.

Together, we will get through this.


Greener Visuals Photography is again offering the Bozeman Front Porch Project family portraits from afar April 25th & 26th, 2020.

It’s a little something to uplift the mood while maintaining safety precautions. Contributing to a good cause and creating a small keepsake to remind you of all the good things you have to celebrate in your life right now. During our shared, sheltered experience, we can foster social distancing connections within our community.

How it works: Mike Greener, of Greener Visuals Photography, will come by your home next Saturday, April 25th or Sunday, April 26th with his telephoto lens and take your family portrait on your front porch from afar.

The Bozeman Front Porch Project by Greener Visuals Photography is fundraising to support the Bozeman Area Community Foundation.

In return for your $100.00 booking fee, $50 will go to supporting the BACF and $50 to support costs of your local family photographer.

In addition, each family will receive a beautiful matted 5×7 fine art print to remember this time and 25% off a future one-hour family portrait experience with Greener Visuals Photography. All participating families will also receive a web-friendly digital photograph of your tribe to share as a thank you for your participation and support.

Together, we will raise funds to assist the Bozeman Area Community Foundation in helping our neighbors heal through this ordeal.

And as a result, we will have a collective group of creative portraits representing both your individual family’s strength together and our combined community’s resilience.

Next weekend April 25th & 26th, 2020 throughout Bozeman.

To reserve your spot in this weekend’s Bozeman Front Porch Project, simply on the link below.

https://bit.ly/34Q1nbu

If you know of a family that might be interested in participating, please share this link with them.

Bozeman_Front_Porch_Project-Banner-3

Family portraits from afar to raise money for those in need.

Through a whirlwind of ever-changing weather patterns, nine gracious Bozeman families participated in the third weekend of the Bozeman Front Porch Project from afar – to celebrate their loved ones, be apart of a community art project and raise money to support the Bozeman Area Community Foundation


There has been a lot of uncertainty with all the drastic changes we’ve been experiencing as a community and nation these past weeks.

Everyone is feeling the impact in one way or another due to the current health and economic crisis.

While we may be socially distancing from our neighbors, we also get to experience the precious moments of togetherness with our families, loved ones, and pets during this time of unpredictability.

That is something to celebrate.

Together, we will get through this.



The Bozeman Front Porch Project was a little something to uplift the mood of our community while maintaining safety precautions. It was a chance for families to contribute to a good cause and to create a small keepsake to remind them of all the good things they have to celebrate in their lives right now.

During our shared, sheltered experience, we can foster social distancing connections within our community.

Together, we raised another $450.00 for the Bozeman Area Community Foundation to help our neighbors heal through this ordeal!

Greener Visuals Photography is again offering the Bozeman Front Porch Project family portraits from afar April 19th & 20th, 2020.

How it works: Mike Greener, of Greener Visuals Photography, will come by your home next Sunday April 19th or Monday April 20th with his telephoto lens and take your family portrait on your front porch from afar.

The Bozeman Front Porch Project by Greener Visuals Photography is fundraising to support the Bozeman Area Community Foundation.

In return for your $100.00 booking fee, $50 will go to supporting the BACF and $50 to support costs of your local family photographer.

In addition, each family will receive a beautiful matted 5×7 fine art print to remember this time and 25% off a future one-hour family portrait experience with Greener Visuals Photography. All participating families will also receive a web-friendly digital photograph of your tribe to share as a thank you for your participation and support.

Together, we will raise funds to assist the Bozeman Area Community Foundation in helping our neighbors heal through this ordeal.

And as a result, we will have a collective group of creative portraits representing both your individual family’s strength together and our combined community’s resilience.

Next weekend April 19th & 20th, 2020 throughout Bozeman.

To reserve your spot in this weekend’s Bozeman Front Porch Project, simply on the link below.

https://bit.ly/2V4tsZk

And as a result, we will have a collective group of creative portraits representing each individual family’s strength together and our combined community’s resilience.

Thanks so much to every family that has participated! -M


Family portraits from afar to raise money for those in need.

The enthusiasm and outpouring of support for the Bozeman Front Porch Project during this time of social distancing, has been profound and I’ve decided to offer another weekend round of mini photo sessions to raise money this time for the Bozeman Area Community Foundation.

Last weekend, fifteen gracious Bozeman families participated in the first ever Bozeman Front Porch Project from afar to celebrate their loved ones, be apart of a community art project and raise money to support the Greater Gallatin United Way during this unsettling time in our community and country.

Together we raised $1,015.00 for them.


There has been a lot of uncertainty with all the drastic changes we’ve been experiencing as a community and nation these past few weeks.

Everyone is feeling the impact in one way or another due to the current health and economic crisis.

While we may be socially distancing from our neighbors, we also get to experience the precious moments of togetherness with our families, loved ones, and pets during this time of unpredictability.

That is something to celebrate.

Together, we will get through this.

As Fred Rogers said in times of trouble, “look for the helpers.”

This past week, countless, selfless people in Bozeman are offering support in various ways throughout our community, and we want to do our part! 


Introducing the Bozeman Front Porch Project for April 4th & 5th, 2020.

Greener Visuals Photography again offering family portraits from afar to celebrate your loved ones, create a community art project and raise money for those in need during this unsettling time.

While I might be standing a farther away from you than I normally would, the connection with your family I’ll inspire will be felt deep within your hearts!

It’s a little something to uplift the mood while maintaining safety precautions. Contributing to a good cause and creating a small keepsake to remind you of all the good things you have to celebrate in your life right now. During our shared, sheltered experience, we can foster social distancing connections within our community.

How it works: Mike Greener, of Greener Visuals Photography, will come by your home next Saturday April 4th or Sunday April 5th with his telephoto lens and take your family portrait on your front porch from afar.

The Bozeman Front Porch Project by Greener Visuals Photography is fundraising to support the Bozeman Area Community Foundation.

In return for your $100.00 booking fee, $50 will go to supporting the BACF and $50 to support your local family photographer.

In addition, each family will receive a beautiful matted 5×7 fine art print to remember this time and 25% off a future one-hour family portrait experience with Greener Visuals Photography. All participating families will also receive a web-friendly digital photograph of your tribe to share as a thank you for your participation and support.

Together, we will raise funds to assist the Bozeman Area Community Foundation in helping our neighbors heal through this ordeal.

And as a result, we will have a collective group of creative portraits representing both your individual family’s strength together and our combined community’s resilience.

Next weekend April 4th & 5th, 2020 throughout Bozeman.

To reserve your spot in this weekend’s Bozeman Front Porch Project, simply on the link below.

https://bit.ly/3bDEVEM

If you know of a family that might be interested in participating, please share this link with them.

Family portraits from afar to raise money for those in need.

This past weekend, fifteen gracious Bozeman families participated in the Bozeman Front Porch Project from afar to celebrate their loved ones, be apart of a community art project and raise money to support the Greater Gallatin United Way during this unsettling time in our community and country.

Over the last few weeks, as the COVID-19 virus spread across the world and finally reach our Montana doorstep, social distancing commenced and our vibrant, social, outdoorsy Bozeman community suddenly felt like a ghost town.

As a self-employed photography business owner navigating the uncertainty of the COVID-19 virus, I wanted to support and create a little something to uplift the mood while our community maintains safety with social distancing.

While our normal lives have been turned into a holding pattern it’s important to remember that – Love is not cancelled. Friendships are not cancelled. Emotional support is not cancelled.

I wanted to create a reminder for these families of all the good things they have to celebrate in their lives right now.



These precious moments of togetherness with our families, loved ones, and pets – our relationships, are what will help us all get through these times of difficulty and struggle.

Through our shared, sheltered experience, we can still foster connections and our combined community’s resilience.



The enthusiasm and outpouring of support for the Bozeman Front Porch Project over the past week of social distancing, has been profound.

I am so grateful to everyone who supported this and helped me spread the word on social media. Thank you!



Right from the start, the health and safety of everyone were at the forefront of importance for me. As the week went on, this serious national health emergency continued to drastically change and escalate.

With the Thursday announcement of stay-at-home directives (starting this weekend for the state) by Montana Gov. Steve Bullock, suddenly, I was debating whether I should put the project on hold.

In the end, under my already stringent safety measures, I decided to continue forward. By photographing everyone from afar with my telephoto lens (on average at least 20 feet) and safely, we created some really genuine fun family portraits.



There was no charge to participate in the Bozeman Front Porch Project however I’m happy to announce that together we raised $1,015.00 that will be donated to the Greater Gallatin United Way!

I’m so thankful for all of the generous donations to this good cause. I’m proud to be apart of our Bozeman community and look forward to a time when we can put this challenge in our rearview mirrors.

Thank you Bozeman!

Stay safe, stay healthy and soak up this time with your loved ones.

When this storm passes, I’ll be here to help you showcase everything you love about your family relationships in your own family photographic experience.

Together, we are all going to get through this. -Mike Greener

P.S. As a candid, creative photographer, I can’t help but capture a moment if it’s happening in front of me. Here are a few bonus photos that I liked from my weekend of giving back.

And lastly, thanks to my labrador retriever and photo assistant Tippet for accompanying me on the Bozeman Front Porch Project. -M

Family portraits from afar to raise money for those in need.

There has been a lot of uncertainty with all the drastic changes we’ve been experiencing as a community and nation these past few weeks.

Everyone is feeling the impact in one way or another due to the current health and economic crisis.

While we may be socially distancing from our neighbors, we also get to experience the precious moments of togetherness with our families, loved ones, and pets during this time of unpredictability.

That is something to celebrate.

Together, we will get through this.

As Fred Rogers said in times of trouble, “look for the helpers.”

This past week, countless, selfless people in Bozeman are offering support in various ways throughout our community, and we want to do our part! 

Introducing the Bozeman Front Porch Project.

Greener Visuals Photography is offering family portraits from afar to celebrate your loved ones, create a community art project and raise money for those in need during this unsettling time.

While I might be standing a little farther away from you than I normally would, the connection I’ll inspire will be felt deep within your hearts!

It’s a little something to uplift the mood while maintaining safety, remind you of all the good things you have to celebrate in your life right now and through our shared, sheltered experience, we can foster social distancing connections within our community.

How it works: Every weekend during the stay-in-place statewide directive for Montana, Mike Greener, of Greener Visuals Photography, will come by your home in Bozeman either Saturday or Sunday with his telephoto lens and take your family portrait on your front porch from afar.

We are fundraising to support the Bozeman Area Community Foundation.

In return for your $100.00 booking fee, $50 will go to supporting the Bozeman Area Community Foundation and $50 to support costs of your local candid, creative family photographer.

In return, each family who donates will receive a beautiful matted 5×7 fine art print and 25% off a future family portrait experience. All participating families will receive a web-friendly digital photograph of your tribe as a thank you for your donation and support.

Together, we will raise funds to assist the Bozeman Area Community Foundation in helping our neighbors heal through this ordeal. As a result, we will have a collective group of portraits representing your individual family’s strength together and our combined community’s resilience. -Mike Greener

Next weekend April 25th & 26th, 2020 throughout Bozeman.

To reserve your spot, simply on the link below.

If you know of a family that might be interested in participating, please share this link with them.

https://greenervisuals.com/2020/04/the-bozeman-front-porch-project-april-25th-26th-2020/

Update: The Bozeman Front Porch Project was a great success! Read the story and check out all of the gracious families that participated.



I photographed the family portrait photography experience of Sara & Jason during my Northern California trip this past Fall.

I was fortunate to meet these two years ago when they hired me to photograph their wedding celebration in Chico, California. As the years have gone by, we’ve become friends.

Now six years later, their world revolves around raising their little family in Northern California.

They now call Auburn, California home where Jason works as a firefighter and Sara as a veterinarian. While schedules can be busy and they work hard to find the balance, it’s clear that there is a lot of love in this home.

I think it shows through the mirror of their happy kids.

In their eyes, life doesn’t get much better than when they are exploring the outdoors and camping outside with their two kiddos during their days off.

For their family portrait photographic experience, they wanted to celebrate all of the little things they cherished about kids during this fast-moving time in their young family’s life.

They wanted to capture the joy on the face of their exuberant 3-year-old son as he plays and dreams in their family home. They wanted to hold on to the feeling of seeing that mom heart-melting tenderness that he shows towards his 1-year-old little sister and his willingness to always include her.

After rounding out a full year with the new addition of their daughter, they wanted to capture her fiery spirit and hilarious exploration of her little world.

They wanted to remember the magic that they see every day when they are with their family.

Knowing this, I felt we were able to create some really genuine, meaningful memories for them by exploring the north fork of the American River and playing with their kids around the house.

Here are some favorite photographs from our time together. Thanks for looking! -M

Matt and Allison’s Couples Portrait Photography Session at Rat Lake in Gallatin National Forest was quite the adventure.

When this newly engaged Bozeman couple, hired me to photograph their 2020 wedding celebration we got to talking about all the things they treasured in their lives and their relationship.

They met through a friend of a friend and while quiet at first, he had all of those amazing attributes like her father – a hard work ethic, compassionate and always willing to stick up for others.

As Allison reflected back on the things she really cherished about Matt, what stood out was his loving patience and his uncanny ability to liven up the mood by just being so much fun to be around.

Laughing as she thought back on it she said, “After dating just 10 months, I knew he was going to be the one.

Ever since they have built their lives together here in Bozeman.

Along the way, they have fostered a shared love of the Montana outdoors often opting to go fishing, off-roading in their 4 x 4 and spending time camping outside with their two dogs

After five years of dating and endless, fun adventures, Matt proposed.

For their Couples Portrait Photography Session, we decided to visit one of their favorite places – Rat Lake tucked up in the Gallatin National Forest outside of Bozeman.

It was the perfect setting to showcase through photography all of the things they love about each other and their relationship.

Here are a few favorite photographs from our time together. I can not wait for their wedding celebration coming up in July 2020. -M

Fairy-Lake-Bozeman-Engagement-Portrait-Photographer

Fairy Lake, in the heart of the Bridger Mountains, is one of my favorite places in Montana to take destination wedding couples for their engagement photography session.

A few weeks back, I met up with my childhood friend Mark and is lovely wife-to-be Jennie during a stop on their Rocky Mountain road trip in Bozeman, Montana and took them out on an adventure.

The first time I talked with Jennie and Mark was during a video chat and instantly we reconnected over similar interests and many laughs reminiscing about stories from our youth growing up playing hockey together in the Chicago suburbs. It was clear to me from our online visit that these two were the perfect match for each other.

Mark’s tribe has been good family friends with my family for many years now. Despite going our separate ways almost eighteen years ago after high school, we kept tabs on each other through the parental telegram over the years and where I learned of this awesome woman named Jennie he had met. Suddenly here we were picking up where we left off years later planning out their Montana engagement session and the intricate details of their wedding day this upcoming summer in Springdale, Arkansas.

It’s always such a treat for me to photograph old friends. This was going to be fun.

Upon their arrival into Bozeman, we all saddled up into my 1984 Land Cruiser and made our way up into the beautiful Bridger mountains for our engagement portrait session. The Montana Fall colors were in full array and we took full advantage of them.

Here are some of my favorite images from our time together. I’m so excited for these two and can’t wait to celebrate their wedding day next October! Congrats to the newly engaged! -M

GreenerVisuals_TippetPuppy01

GreenerVisuals_TippetPuppy02

Introducing my New Photography Studio Labrador Puppy “Tippet”.

My new best friend has arrived!

My family grew up raising labrador retriever puppies and every Spring, during my junior and high school years, we would have a litter of labrador puppies in our house.

It was so much fun to come home from school and yell “Hey kids!” from the front door and suddenly a wave of wagging labrador would welcome me at the door. 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 it would 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 it. Last Monday, I finally got to go pick her up.

It seems I’ve suddenly 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 our future adventures with you all on here. -M

Greener Visuals Photography participated in the 2017 A Montana Wedding Event at The Commons in Bozeman, Montana this past Saturday.

I’ve been a part of this annual bridal show put on by the Bozeman Daily Chronicle for the past five years. The event was held at The Commons at Baxter & Love 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.

After setting up my rustic, reclaimed lumber and metal wedding show display booth, I spent the rest of the day talking, hearing wedding plans and sharing in the excitement of all the participating wedding couples.

If you are a bride that gets overwhelmed with options, this event is a great way simplify your search, to put faces to the names of local wedding businesses, and a chance to check off all the tasks on your booking list.

Here are a few favorite photos I made during the day’s wedding-themed festivities. I’m so glad I could be apart of this great annual wedding event. -M

I still have a few dates available for booking wedding photography in the 2017 and 2018 wedding season. I travel worldwide. Inquire for details.

I just picked up some copies of the new A Montana Wedding magazine and was excited to see that the new issue features numerous wedding photos from Greener Visuals Photography inside! The annual publication put out by the Bozeman Daily Chronicle is a helpful guide chocked full of inspiration, tips, and content from local wedding vendors for couples planning their wedding day in and around Southwest Montana. It never gets old seeing one’s labor of love in print. I’m proud to see my photos grace its pages. Check out the goods! Thanks, Bozeman Daily Chronicle! -M

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Gallatin County 2015 Holiday Party Photos

As a young business owner, I believe it’s important to give back my time and skill sets to enrich and benefit my community. It was one of the many things I took pride in over the last decade photographing for community newspapers across the company. Telling the stories of others in my community. It is one of my passions. Now as a full-time self-employed wedding, editorial, and commercial photographer, opportunities to interact with the public, like my time working as a journalist, don’t come around as much. Supporting and donating my photography skill set to benefit local non-for-profits is a service I am grateful to provide.

About week before the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Gallatin County‘s 2015 holiday party for the kids, their families and the mentors of the program, I was contacted by Valerie Erwin, Marketing and Outreach Coordinator of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Gallatin County. She was in a bind, short on time and needed a photographer to document the fun in photos at their annual holiday party. I was happy to help. I headed over to the Gallatin County Fairgrounds and set up my portable photo studio, setting the stage for the party attendees to have some fun. This crowd was a hoot. I love documenting humans at play. We all had a great time and I came away with some fun photos from the event. Here are some favorites. Happy to support such a great local organization. Merry Christmas everyone! -M

AlaskaPilotEricGreenerProposalPortrait_GreenerVisuals

My pilot brother Eric and his new bride-to-be Brandy have been making headlines throughout the internet the last couple of days. Recently they became engaged when he surprised her at 34,000 ft with a proposal inflight while she working as an Alaska Airlines flight attendant! She is incredible. The family is thrilled. Then a few days ago, a posted youtube video of Eric’s in-flight marriage proposal started to gain traction online. It has since caught the attention of the national and international media. The list continues to grow but so far Eric & Brandy have turned up in news articles for USA TodayThe Daily Mail in Great Britain, MSN.com, featured on CBS This Morning, ABC NewsAlaska Airlines blog, Cosmopolitan, The KnotPeople Magazine and The Huffington Post even used a Greener Visuals Wedding Photography photo that I took of these two love bird goofballs on a mountaintop outside Anchorage, Alaska. Check it out. It’s been fun for the family to watch their love story spread across the web. Well done brother. Way to be a wing woman, Mom. It’s a great story. I encourage you all to watch the video below and hear my stud little brother propose to an awesome lady. The Greener wedding is going to be this summer! I can’t wait. Congrats on your engagement you guys! -M

 

Had a great time meeting the brides and other Bozeman wedding vendors at the 2015 A Montana Wedding Magazine The Bridal Event in Bozeman, Montana last Saturday at the Best Western GranTree Inn. Here are some photos I made throughout the day. Great food, beautiful flowers and inspiration abound for the local brides-to-be. Well done to the advertising staff of the Bozeman Daily Chronicle for hosting such a great event. And congrats to Kerry for winning my free photo engagement session in the grand prize drawing. All the best to all the recently engaged! Looking forward to next year’s event. -M

For more photos of the event click here.

Yesterday the news spread around the State of Montana that a U. S. District Court Judge struck down Montana’s same-sex marriage ban which effectively made the Big Sky country the 34th state to allow gay marriage. I was so happy to hear it. It has been a long time coming. Positive change. So this morning as I was sipping my late morning coffee reading the Bozeman Daily Chronicle newspaper article about the court decision, I got a surprise call from a friend letting me know that my two friends MichaelAnne and Shannon had decided they had waited long enough and we’re going to quickly tie the knot at the Gallatin County Law and Justice Center at 11:30 am. I had about ten minutes to get to the other side of town. I wouldn’t miss such a special occasion. I grabbed my camera gear and rushed out the door.

Sprinting up to the second floor, I arrived to find the Rev. Nina Grey, of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Bozeman performing free wedding ceremonies to LGBT couples in the hallway as they lined up to the County Clerk’s office to get their new marriage certificates. It was a beautiful and emotional scene to witness. There were many tears of joy. Sweet beautiful victory. I photographed a few couples and then waited to see my two friends finally join in union. MichaelAnne and Shannon met in Eugene, Oregon has been together for the past 15 years. It was so special to see them finally tie the knot surrounded by close friends. I’m so excited for them and all the other LGBT couples that finally got their big day. Today love won! Congrats to all! -M

 

 

Whoo hoo! Big news! I just got copies of the brand new A Montana Wedding magazine and it is full of wedding photos from Greener Visuals Wedding Photography! The wedding magazine is a yearly publication produced by the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and showcases Montana wedding stories and useful tips for couples planning their wedding day in the Big Sky state. The best part is that a photo from Courtney & Chris’ Wedding day was chosen as the magazine cover photo! My first ever! I’m so excited! The publication will be dispersed to wedding vendors and businesses throughout the state for the next year. I’m proud to to see numerous past clients of mine be featured throughout the pages. As you can see from the photos, I got a lot of good photo play. Also, I have plenty of copies. Shoot me an email and I’d be happy to send you one. Check it out! -M

GreenerVisualsInBlissI was doing a little spring cleaning of my email this morning over strong coffee and rediscovered this bit of news I wanted to share. A photo I made from Erin & Ryan’s wedding day in Denver, Colorado back in 2011 was featured on In Bliss Weddings blog in an interesting take on using social media on your wedding day. You can read the post here. I embrace anything that gets others to express their creativity. These new smart phones have replaced the traditional point-and-shoot cameras and have given access to photography for the masses. You can form your own opinion. I say if one feels inspired to snap a quick pic of a moment that inspires them, they should go for it. These days it’s a common sight for me to see guests in attendance or brides maids bust out their phones. Most commonly I’ll have a mob of relatives behind me as I coordinate a large family photo. I’m not worried about them. Have they ever gotten the same image that I deliver to my wedding clients? Nope. It’s not the camera that makes a good photograph, but the photographer behind the camera lens. I bring my own vision to the table. For the wedding couple, the beauty of hiring a talented wedding photographer is so they can simplify their wedding day to focusing on being with their loved ones.

I find that social media use at weddings depends on the crowd at the wedding. Sure. You see folks tune out a second to check their phones throughout the wedding day. It has become common place in our culture. I don’t think this wave of social media is interfering at weddings. It is just changing from the traditional ways we’ve experienced the union of two individuals. In the end, I think most wedding guests and loved ones remain present for what really matters….the marriage of two people in love. The more ways we as a society can document, amplify, share and spread the message of love, I say all the better. Share away! -M

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Just got word that Greener Visuals Wedding Photography  was awarded 8th Place in the Getting Ready category of the Wedding Photojournalism Association 2013 National Q4 Photo Contest. The photo, above, was from Josh and Elizabeth’s Wedding Day at the Creek Club at I’On in Charleston, South Carolina last summer. It is an honor to be recognized in the ranks of so many incredible wedding photographers throughout the world. The judges give their comments under the top ten winning images. I love good feedback. Check out all of the other winning images on their website. -M

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I‘ve been photographing weddings for the past nine years all over the country. Being a destination wedding photographer (now based in Bozeman, Montana) has been the perfect blend of my love for telling stories with pictures and love for adventure and exploring new places. Last year my wedding photography took me from the southern charms of Charleston, South Carolina to the mountains of Vail, Colorado onto San Francisco, California and to the rustic Bitterroot Valley in Western Montana. So much fun. I’ve been blessed to photograph some really wonderful wedding couples. What started out as a fun gigs for friends at weddings, has cultivated into a wonderful creative outlet I want in my future. Over the past decade, my wedding photography business has been running solely on word of mouth and organic searches on the interwebs. In all that time, I’ve never had an opportunity for a physical public display to showcase my wedding photography business. Last weekend given my first chance. I was honored to be apart of the Bozeman Bridal Affaire 2014 held at the Strand Union Ballroom on the Montana State University campus in Bozeman, Montana. It was the first bridal fair that my Greener Visuals Wedding Photography has participated in. It was important to me that it made a good first impression.

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Working with a 10 x 10 ft space, we would need to get creative both in design and in how we would transport my photography display booth. Sometimes I can be stubborn. I was not willing to sacrifice visual impact for ease of transportation especially if my booth was to make a big splash with those in attendance. I’m a strong guy. But after a car accident years ago that left me with constant back aches, I needed to consider the weight of it all. My booth would represent my formal “Howdy!” as the new photographer in town to the brides of southwest Montana in attendance but also to all of the other wedding vendors in the area. Which made me ponder some concepts like what should my brand look like? What kind of feeling should my booth convey to wedding couples moving through wedding maze within the MSU campus ballroom? Being able to show fun, wedding photos is one thing, packaging it with the feel of my overall brand was another. I had never done anything like it before.

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What a cool opportunity. I discovered it to be a wonderful exercise to get me to think differently. With my logo as the starting point of inspiration, I began piecing together the branding puzzle. I’ve always loved the old rustic feel of Montana that I  experienced visiting family as a kid here every summer growing up. The color schemes of Montana are like no other place on earth. Besides the gorgeous mountain streams filled with trout and jagged rocky peaks, what stood out to me was always seeing the old abandoned barns or homesteads worn down by the environmental elements to the point that they grey out and become part of the Montana scenery. Rough around the edges. Beautifully imperfect.

I wanted to replicate that feeling so dear to me onto my future wedding clients. So, I sketched out some concepts and drove over to my parents house in Missoula to seek the assistance of my woodworking savy dad. Bonus that it was a fun father and son woodworking project. Together, we set out to build a display that would catch the eye of engaged couples and give a powerful, first impression showcasing my style and brand of Greener Visuals Wedding Photography. It was a great challenge. The display needed to have a big visual impact in size, great lighting and many large photos. We were still brewing up a concrete design, when we drove down into the valley and checked out Home Resource, an incredible nonprofit building materials reuse center in Missoula, Montana. Having “green” in my name, I decided “being green” would be a cool concept to incorporate into my new brand building project. We ended up finding a bunch of beautiful, old reclaimed barn wood planks, insulated sheet metal heating ducts and some really nice track lighting. Now that we had raw materials, so began our visualization of how it would all come together.

Many questions needed to be answered. How to showcase my wedding photography with a professional look but also make it stand out by being unique in my approach? How could I convey something personal? What feelings would brides experience from seeing my display? I had to figure out what my goals were. I consider myself a wedding storyteller. To emphasize that point, I knew I wanted to show my potential wedding clients an entire wedding story in pictures. The ultimate way to show them exactly what they would expect to get by hiring me as their wedding photographer. That meant I would need to show quite a few photos for just that purpose. Showcasing to Montana brides, I decided to feature Ashley & David’s Montana wedding story, one of my favorite weddings I photographed from my 2013 wedding season at the Teller Wildlife Refuge in the Bitterroot Valley of western Montana. It was also important to highlight some of my best images to show the range of emotion, moments and range of my photojournalistic photography style. All good thinking but I was limited financially. Print costs can add up quickly. Rather than make the investment of expensive canvas prints (a very popular, beautiful option used by photographers for displaying photos), I decided instead to be more versatile and chose to print out regular photo paper images instead. To me there is still nothing more impactful than seeing a physical photograph in print. After all, every picture tells a story.

Over two weekends, my dad and I created a large four panel, self-standing, framed display where I could use rare earth magnets to hold my wedding photos across the framed metal backdrop. It was different and I was pleased. To add to the visual impact of my images, we fastened the track lighting to a reclaimed long barn wood plank and anchored it across the top to link the two large frames. We rigged the whole lighting system to a dimmer switch which allowed me to dial in the perfect light to accent my photography. Add a screw to hang my business sign and like that, a paper concept comes into fruition. I was very pleased with the ending results. The best part is that it all breaks down in size where it can be easily carried and will fit into the back of my Subaru Outback. Score! A big thank you to my dad, John, for all of his assistance and use of his tools.

Last Friday evening, I hauled it all over to the Bridal Affaire, and got it all set up in anticipation for the all day event on Saturday. My booth was a huge hit. Besides my build display I was able to display wedding albums and more information about my photographic services. I had an awesome time meeting a lot of excited, newly-engaged couples and hearing about their wedding plans. How exciting it must be for them. It was a really good feeling to see folks engage with my photography. I got as many complements on my booth as I did on my wedding photography. In the end, I’ll call it a big win for the day and a great stepping stone in my photographic journey. The best news is that my phone has been ringing. I’m already looking forward to the new wedding stories I will get to tell this year. -M

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