Lauren & Andrew: Married! ~ NYC

On my 30th birthday, July 25, 2013, I launched the official website of Erin Joyce Photography. I took the leap, and EJP became an official business. When I launched my site, one of my dearest friends, Layne, called to congratulate me.... and ask if I did weddings. Without hesitation, I answered, "No. No weddings. Not my thing." In typical Layne fashion, she didn't take my "no" as an absolute answer. She continued to explain that her younger sister, Lauren, was getting married in December and needed a photographer. I still said, "no." She then continued to explain that it was going to be a really small affair and that it was going to be in New York City. Okay, she had my attention. I love New York. Despite having caught my attention, I was still standing pretty firm in my, "no," but allowed Layne to tell Lauren she could contact me and we could talk.

Shortly after, I heard from Lauren. She explained that she'd only need a photographer for a couple hours and that it was such a small event, they couldn't justify finding a big time photographer to travel. I told her I'd think about it.... I thought about it, and thought about it. When it came down to it, I couldn't really find a reason to say no. New York, close friends. So, I said yes.

My firm "no" when asked to shoot a wedding was out of pure fear. Every photographer has their "first wedding", right? I'm glad I took the leap of faith because I LOVED photographing this wedding.ย I would have never imagined that I would have booked and shot my first wedding before the end of 2013, but I did, thanks to Lauren and Andy for putting their trust in me to capture their day. I look forward to booking more weddings and adding this category to EJP!

Enough about me, let's talk about Lauren and Andy!

Lauren stayed at the Waldorf Astoria. No big deal, right?! She got ready in her hotel room and had me meet her there shortly before the limo arrived to take her to the chapel. We had a very short amount of time to take some bridal shots. She was a princess walking through the halls and absolutely stunning. The whole time, my heart went out to her. The nerves... oh, the nerves! I remember them so well. ย :)

She was just absolutely breathtaking. The passersby (all day long!) couldn't help but stare and take pictures themselves.

The limo arrived, and we quickly had to get in so we could get to the church on time, but not without grabbing a quick picture of her in front of the hotel (thanks to my handsome husband for literally standing in front of traffic so I could get a clear shot!).

And into the limo she goes.

I think these are some of my favorite pictures of Lauren. As everyone chatted on the way to the church, Lauren and I talked a bit about school and work... typical conversation. Inside, though, I know she was all butterflies and as nervous as could be. She was going to be married within a couple minutes. I love how these images show her excitement and her nerves, all rolled into one!

I swear, the whole day felt like a fight against the clock! When we arrived, I couldn't help but grab a few shots of Lauren in front of theย gorgeous church before she was whisked away into her secret room!

This has to be one of the most breathtaking churches I've ever been in. I wish, so badly, I had had more time to walk around, inside and out, to take more pictures. I'll definitely be going back there to take pictures on my next trip to New York!

The ceremony. I'll let the images speak for themselves.

The picture above, on the right, is my favorite. Just married! So sweet. Since they only had a handful of guests, they were able to sign their marriage license in front of everyone. The deal is sealed.

We had 30 minutes to do portraits. Thirty minutes is not a lot of time, but we did it!

Lauren and her daddy. I just love it.

After the ceremony, everyone got in the limo. Lauren, Andy, Dustin (my hubby!) and I were dropped off at Central Park to do location shots. This was my favorite part. We had one hour to take a carriage ride through the park and do pictures. Again, an hour isn't a ton of time! But we got such wonderful pictures. Lauren and Andy were celebrities. While on the carriage, everyone stopped to take pictures of them. I heard "look, a princess!" so many times, and we got applause and cheers throughout the whole hour we were there. Since it was such a warm December day, the park was PACKED, so it was quite the audience. What a memorable experience for Lauren and Andy.

After the park, the four of us got back in the limo to head back to the hotel. I was so excited to get some shots of Lauren and Andy in front of the hotel and on the streets. Well, that plan went to {insert expletive here} when we hit Midtown. Oh.my.god. We sat still for 30-45 minutes before we decided we had to get out of the limo and go by foot. Fortunately, Dustin was able to flag down a bike limo for Lauren and Andy. Dustin and I then hugged my equipment to our chests and we headed for the streets.... only to get caught in a complete mob of people. We couldn't move in any direction. I'll spare the rest of the details, the words that came our of out mouths and what we smelled like once we emerged. With that whole debacle, Dustin and I ended up being late for dinner (we weren't the only ones).

Lauren, several times, told me, "You're off the clock at dinner. Just be our guest and relax. You've worked hard today." See, being such a close friend to Layne, I feel like I've been somewhat a part of the family for some time. So, naturally, they wanted us to join them as guests, not as their photographer and "her assistant." (haha, Dustin!). Honestly, do you think I'd just sit there and enjoy the food and spirits and not take any pictures??

There were 17 of us total. What a nice intimate "reception." It made it quite easy to get everyone in the pictures!

I even jumped in for a picture per Lauren's request. Can you find me??

It was such a great dinner! Oh, did I mention where we ate? At Michael Jordan's Steakhouse with a view of Grand Central. Awesome. And there were two engagements in the middle of the terminal during dinner!

Lauren and Andy, I wish you a lifetime of happiness. Your love is so apparent and special. Thank you to you both and your family for including us in your special day. It was a phenomenal experience.... I truly can't thank you enough.