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I’m still buzzing with excitement after photographing the Springhill Pavilion Wedding Day of Allison and Matt this past weekend. I’ve gotten to know these two Montana transplants over the past year and have been looking forward to documenting their wedding day for some time now. Both got their Ecology graduate degrees from UC Davis, a place where I used to live and a place that is close to heart. We bonded immediately over Davis stories and the realization that we knew many of the same people. Sometimes you encounter certain people in your life that you know will instantly become friends. These two are wonderful, hilarious goofballs. Their Montana wedding day was everything you would hope one could be – lovely Spring-like weather, the perfect setting, and a gathering of friends and family that were ready to get down on the dance floor. Their wedding day was an absolute blast to photograph. As I begin editing through all of the photographs, I wanted to share a preview of them. Many more to come! Stay tuned… -Mike

This past Monday I had the absolute pleasure of photographing the Livingston Montana Wedding Day of Erika and Josh near the banks of the Yellowstone River at the Livingston KOA. For newlyweds Erika and Josh, it was all about returning to the source. Little did they know after a chance encounter over a foosball game table in Livingston, Montana, two years later they would be celebrating their wedding in the beautiful Paradise Valley just south of town. Both being well versed in hospitality (Josh as a chef at Feast Raw Bar & Bistro and Erika as a former wedding planner) wanted to have their wedding day be “about letting their friends and family know how much they’ve impacted us in our lives.” Great food, meticulous decorations of 1,000 paper cranes and rock cairns, homemade booze-infused cupcakes and the right tunes to keep the dance floor busy. It made the day a true delight. Not even the constant rainfall throughout the day could dampen the spirits of those in attendance.

While I’m still working away at editing all the fun photographs, I wanted to share a small preview of their awesome wedding day celebration. Congrats to the newlyweds! Stay tuned for more photo goodness. -M

Rocky Creek Farm Styled Wedding Photo Session of Tara and Sky

These wedding photos are from a recent fun wedding themed project that I organized in a pinch the other day. Last Tuesday I was talking to my friends Jacy and Matt, owners of Gallatin Valley Botanical, a local organic farm here in Gallatin Valley. I’ve been photographing and supporting their family farm here in Bozeman for years now. They mentioned that they would soon be taking over management of the popular Rocky Creek Farm (another farm down the road from theirs) and in addition to farming the increased acreage, would also be pushing to make it a successful new farm wedding venue. As she was gathering material together for their wedding advertisement for this past weekend’s Bozeman Bridal Walk,  they realized they would need some new photography to showcase their new endeavor to potential wedding clients. I told them I could help.

We decided to have a Rocky Creek Farm Styled Wedding Photo Session.

Time was short. We set a photo shoot time for 2 pm the following afternoon and after hanging up the phone, I sprung into action. I got in touch with my engaged friends Sky and Tara and invited them to be my models for the afternoon. Regardless of our short timetable, if we were going to do a proper photos shoot, we would need to do things right. Quickly needing a fine suit and beautiful wedding dress for my couple to flaunt, I called upon the talents of Persnickety Formal Wear owner Anne Porter. In between all of her fittings for her prom season busyness, she got Sky and Tara looking just top notch. For their hair and makeup, I stopped into Indulgence to have my friend the lovely Deirdre Quinn see to it that Tara looked just radiant as a bride for the photo shoot.

It all came together so well. In all, we organized our impromptu wedding photo shoot in under 24 hours and it turned out awesome.

Our shoot lasted about two hours and we had a blast. By the time of our photo shoot, the Wednesday morning rain clouds had subsided and we were given a nice window of an early Spring day to utilize. Rocky Creek Farms has a lot to offer both in capacity and scenery. We played with an assorted canvas of old barn wood backdrops to open fields accompanied with views of the Bridger Mountains in the distance to even photo opportunities along the on-property spring creek. I could have created there for hours. Together we explored the property grounds and made a lot of fun photos of two friends in love complete with baby lambs and I even brought along my new labrador puppy Tippet to be featured in the shoot. It was a perfect way to spend a Montana afternoon. This photo session could not have happened without the hustle and team effort by all the vendors who worked together to make something special on such short notice. A great time was had by all. Congrats to Sky and Tara on their engagement and well wishes to Matt and Jacy and they grow their new wedding venue out at Rocky Creek Farms! -M

To view all of the photos from our styled photo shoot, click here.

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

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of meeting dozens of new brides-to-be during the annual Montana Bridal Tour event at the 1915 Barn in Bozeman, Montana. Greener Visuals Photography has participated in the Fall bridal event (run by the talent event planner Abby Turner, of Reed & Lee Event Planning) for the past couple of years and really enjoy the face time connection with all of the excited brides as they begin their wedding planning process. As a whole, the Montana Bridal Tour is a chance for the newly engaged couples in the Gallatin Valley to tour multiple wedding venues around the Bozeman area and meet talented wedding vendors at each location. For a fun-filled day, four buses rotate driving participants from place to place where they get to sample the wares, get inspiration for their own wedding day and ask questions to participating wedding vendors. It’s so much fun to see the excitement on their faces.

In between chatting with brides all day long, I made some photos from the event at the 1915 Barn in Bozeman, Montana. For information on attending next year’s tour, you can visit their website here. What a fun day. -M

Last week had the opportunity to venture out into the surprisingly mild Montana winter weather with my wedding clients Julia and Peter for a fun afternoon engagement photo session around Bozeman. These two have had this great park near their home in Bozeman where they often walk their dogs and we started our photo outing there. I loved the winter color palette of blues, greys and oranges standing out from the white snow blanketing the ground. I was really pleased with the results. These two are great. A fun day outside in the Big Sky. Looking forward to photographing their 2015 wedding day at Chico Hot Springs in June. Stay tuned. -M

I’m excited to post these wedding photos. About a month ago, I traveled to Chico, California from Bozeman, Montana to photograph the destination wedding day of Sara and Jason. These two lovebirds booked me well over a year out after her work friend found me and showed my photography to Sara during a internet search for Northern California wedding photographers during a long overnight emergency work shift (Sara is a veterinarian). Talking with with Jason and Sara on the phone we quickly bonded over discovering a mutual love of the outdoors, fly fishing and the occasional craft beer. These were my kind of people. I had been looking forward to their wedding day for a while. Our first time meeting was in the morning of their wedding day but it was like being reacquainted with old friends. I met up with them as they were getting ready at the Hotel Diamond in downtown Chico and photographed them as the day unfolded.

Their wedding was a fantastic DIY (Do it yourself!) event hosted at his mother’s farm property outside of town called the Double R RanchIt was put together with the help of friends and family who were successful in creating a charming garden farm themed wedding celebration. Dinner was served in the garden amongst the sunflowers and squash on wood tables made by the groomsmen. The barn itself had been just finished by the wedding party in time for the event. Everywhere you looked there was a personal touch. It was a beautiful day filled with warm weather and smiles. A fun weekend with great people! I am just thrilled for these two! Congrats to Sara and Jason and many years of continued happiness! -Mike Greener

To see all of their wedding celebration photos, click here.

 

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Stumbled across this gem in a news feed recently. Glamour Magazine nails it on the head for a good wedding toast advice formula.

“Introduce yourself + funny story about your friend and why you love her + why the spouse is such a great match + larger sentimental thought + “Cheers!” + a hug for the couple = a truly killer wedding toast.

I thought it was really good food for thought. I would add with all of that to just be genuine and keep it short and sweet. Check out the full list of tips here. -M

What a weekend! I’ve begun editing through and reliving the fun wedding photos of Ali and Drausin’s celebration I made last weekend at the 4 Eagle Ranch in Vail, Colorado. I wanted to share a sneak peek of some of their wedding photos. Many more to come. My work is cut out for me. Congratulations to Ali and Drauslin! Stay tuned. -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

God…I love what comes across your path on the internet. I found this great unique wedding toast the other day and wanted to share it with all of you. I hope my friends are this creative when it comes to my wedding day. So awesome! Give it a second to load then watch it all the way through. Too funny. I’m getting excited to start my 2012 wedding photography season. If you know of anyone looking to hire a fun, talented wedding photographer, send them my way! All the best, -M

The California wedding season has begun! A couple weeks ago I had the pleasure of seeing two of my oldest friends tie the knot at a small vineyard-surrounded property outside of Hopland, California. I met Ashley and Trevor back back in 1994 when I was in sixth grader at North Junior High School in my hometown of Crystal Lake, Illinois. It was a big time of transition at that point in my young life. Junior High meant attending a new bigger school with new kids and multiple teachers, all of a sudden girls started being topics of interests for me and the other boys, we no longer had recess at school (a huge disappointment) and instead, we got our daily fun through games in gym class. It was gym class where I first met Ashley. She was this pretty, firecracker red head who had grown up playing softball and now was a lethal force against anyone playing gym class dodge ball. For all the other pubescent boys and myself it was an immediate infatuation. This girl could throw a ball better than most of us. I’ve been luckily to call her a friend ever since that day.

Now all grown up, I have long since left my Illinois roots and I’ve found that there are not many people from my hometown that have ventured out west of the Mississippi. Ashley and Trevor were some of the few who did. It’s funny to me how as you grow older in your life you never really know what friends will continue to be apart of your journey. Thankfully somehow, some way Ashley and I have remained in contact and have stayed friends throughout. I have had numerous opportunities to meet up her and Trevor (once they started dating) over the years. Their wedding day was a long time coming. These two are perfect for each other and I’ve always been impressed with their shared passion for the flavor of life both in cuisine and culture. Fast forward 16 years since the 6th grade, the two have made a life together working in the fine dining industry of San Francisco and many times they have offered up their apartment couch to me during weekend visits to the city by the bay. Trevor has quickly turned into one of the top up and coming chefs in the San Francisco bay area. I had the opportunity to photograph (and sample) some of his first restaurant dishes as he was starting out. I still dream about them. He graduated from California Culinary Academy in 2005 and quickly became the executive sous chef at Umami Restaurant and has since moved on to become the executive chef at Mission Beach Cafe over the last year. Trevor’s big news is that he just recently signed on to this new project, which will be called Chambers located in the Phoenix Hotel, a notorious destination for famous “rock n’ roll” musicians staying in the city. The restaurant is slated to open the first week of May and the food will be California cuisine with a focus on locally sourced ingredients. If it’s anything like his previous restaurants gigs that I have dined in, I have no doubts it will be a huge success. Ashley is balancing her time between being a head server and wine guru at the Betelnut Restaurant in Marina District of San Francisco while finishing up a major in Business Management with a minor in Economics at the San Francisco City College. I would not be surprised at all if these two opened their own fancy restaurant down the road. I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed.

When I got their wedding invitation in the mail, I knew it would be a mini Crystal Lake reunion. They had their intimately small wedding outside of Hopland, California at the Mendocino Hill Event Center. It was really a beautiful ceremony filled with great friends and warm familiar faces. I attended this wedding as a guest but I decided to bring along my camera for fun. It provided a good opportunity for me to experiment and try out different approaches to shooting. Between catching up with old friends, laughing and telling stories over local wine and eating an assortment of fine cheeses and roasted duck, I managed to snap a couple pictures. Here are some of my favorite images I made of their wedding day. You can find more photos from Ashley and Trevor’s wedding here. It was so great to be apart of their special day. I wish them all the best. -M