Star Wars Wedding

To be completely honest, Sarah & Alex’s wedding day snuck up on me and I didn’t have much time to think about the details of the wedding. But once I read the wedding questionnaire and saw that it was Star Wars themed, I instantly became excited. I was honest with the bride & groom and let them know that I wasn’t a Star Wars fan, but I am a fan of non-traditional weddings. I even played my part with having Princess Leia hair.

Sarah & Alex had their Star Wars wedding with an intimate group of family and friends. The day was focused on them & their loved ones. They hosted a Star Wars wedding with so much class. No tacky decorations here. Every little detail was completely thought out. Including the vows, that spoke Star Wars language.

If I had to guess, I would say that Sarah & Alex’s wedding day was the best day of their life so far. Many friends played huge rolls in their day. Many true and honest words were spoken, tears shed and dances shared.

Congrats to the bride & groom - I wish you many, bright galaxies together!

xx -

Hannah

Paige & Alex - St. Louis Engagement

Last weekend, Tom and I had the privilege and opportunity to meet Paige & Alex down in St. Louis. First we met up for drinks then followed them to our shooting location - their new home they are building. Their new house is literally in the backyard of the house they are currently renting.

I absolutely fell in love with this idea for the location. The symbolism here almost makes me tear up. Watching them walk out of their current house, drive over and walk into their new, unfinished home made me realize this:

When we get engaged, we are in a state of safety. We have security in our own routines, habits and patterns. Just like there is security in living in a previously built home.

But once we are married and living with someone else, plans and routines are rocky. Patterns and feeling secure might feel like you’re living in an unfinished house.

But as the house becomes finished, so does your relationship - or at least that’s what it’s working towards. I don’t ever believe a relationship will be 100% “finished”. There will always be discussions and situations that bring out new opinions and feelings. Just like a house is forever changing with the number of people or animals living in it, people it serves and experience’s it holds.

I think that it is so special for Paige & Alex to have these photos of themselves in their unfinished home. Before the vows and wedding photos. Before the kiddos or doggos. Before time passes them by.

To remember the state they are in now - newly engaged & 110% excited for life together.

Thank you Wedding Pioneer St. Louis for always directing the raddest couples to us!

Meet Blue Willow

Hey guys!!

We are so glad you’re here! And we are so excited to share the rebrand of our business with you all! It was about time that Tom officially joined the team & we made this business official with the state LOL.

To give you guys a little back ground on us -

We met while we were in Physical Therapist Assistant school in 2014. We tried to hide our romance from our instructors, but joke was on us. They told us at our wedding they knew the entire time.

We got married August of 2016, moved to Springfield IL, started jobs & got a fur baby.

The past two years we have been high school youth leaders with our church. It’s been so fulfilling pouring into the next generation’s lives & helping them grow closer to Jesus.

When we aren’t behind the camera, we like to enjoy our easy Sunday mornings, sip our coffee, go on walks, watch The Office, stay fit, & spend time with friends and family.

Here’s a little bit more about us separately -

Hannah here. If you’re new to meeting us, then hi… I’m Hannah! Originally from ATL, Ga but also kinda grew up in the midwest. Just a few fun facts about me. I taught myself how to knit and crochet in high school, so naturally I refuse to buy scarfs from any stores. Before I finished school & moved to Springfield, I was one of the assistant managers at my hometown’s one and only movie theater. That was seriously the best job I’ve ever had. The people I met through that job are one of a kind. Plus the benefits were amazing - free movies, popcorn, soda and cotton candy. Somedays, I really miss it.

Another fun fact, I could drink honey mustard. Gosh, it’s so good. I’ll fight you on that. Try me. :)

Last one, if there’s a song on the radio, there’s a 99% chance I know it & will break out dance moves to it. At weddings, you can always count on me to either get the party started or close down the dance floor. But in all seriousness, I love photographing weddings and I am so honored & thankful I get to experience this opportunity and call this my job with my best friend right next to me. I am so excited for 2019 & can’t wait to work with all of you beautiful people! xx

Now here’s my hubs, Tom!

See picture below. That is me. Yep. Welp…. See ya!

Usually it takes an hour for me to write one instagram post so I’ll try to make this short and sweet. I grew up in the beautiful land of Shelbyville. I’ve been playing music my whole life. I wear one pair of jeans 90% of the time. Growing up I was always the guy with a camera filming random events to save the memories. I once took a handheld camera to a Chris Daughtry concert…. lol loser. After Hannah got into photography, the interest in videography reignited and here we are now!

2019 is going to be an amazing year & we are ready to hit the ground running! To start off this rebrand right, we are offering 10% off of our photo & video package through the month of March! Please inquire through our website :)

signed contract and paid deposit is required

We can’t wait to work with our couples this year that we have met through Wedding Pioneer STL & our new region, Indy.

As always, love you guys & we are so thankful for your support!

Xoxo,

Tom & Hannah

#goals

It’s that time of year again. The time of year where people create New Year’s resolutions. If you’re into the health and fitness world, this is the time of year where you see an influx at the gym. That’s the most commonly known resolution. But there are other resolutions and goals I think it’s important to make and be intentional about. This blog post is a personal one. I’ll be sharing my 2018 goals I wrote down almost a year ago. I’m also going to be vulnerable and share my 2019 goals with you. I want to share my 2019 goals with y’all to keep me accountable, to encourage me to crush them & to give you an opportunity to help me achieve them! Are you ready? Okay, here we go!

2018 GOALS:

  • photograph 6 Blue Willow weddings

  • set up Blue Willow Pinterest

  • Visit Maine in October

  • photograph a couple in Phoenix

  • have a blog/insta account feature me

  • fly my dad up to visit

  • buy another body & camera lens

  • buy a Mac

  • get employee of the month

  • buy business cards

  • create my own office

  • create my own studio

  • do yoga once a week

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How many of these goals do you think I completed? Answer is 7/13. Now can you guess which ones? I’ll be nice and tell you already.

This year (my first year of photographing weddings) I photographed 7 Blue Willow weddings. I also second photographed a couple. WIN!

I set up Pinterest for Blue Willow, thanks to the amazing Jenna Kutcher for all of her free education.

I was able to photograph not one, but three couples in Phoenix. So amazing & definitely one of my favorite places ever.

My work was featured on www.weddingpioneer.com this year & I humbly became part of their featured photographers for the St. Louis market. So honoring to have been chosen among so many other amazing creatives.

This year came with so much financial freedom that granted me to buy a new camera body, another camera lens and my first Mac. Living the dream!

It also allowed me to create and purchase Blue Willow Photography business cards. But you know what? I forgot to include my freeeeaking website. Amateur for sure. Keeping it real ya’ll.



Instead of Maine, we visited Utah and Idaho this October. Maine is still on the bucket list!

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2019 GOALS:

  • photograph 15 Blue Willow weddings

  • reach MB with Monat

  • read four books

  • work with my husband on 4 Blue Willow weddings

  • yoga once a week

  • visit Maine in October

  • fly my dad up to visit

  • photograph a backyard wedding

  • photograph a West coast wedding

  • photograph an East coast wedding

Some of my goals I didn’t achieve this year carried over to 2019. I think that is totally okay to keep making the same goals. Always strive for excellence and push yourself to reach your dreams and goals.

What are some of your 2019 goals? I feel that it’s so important to have accountability with one another. I want to encourage you and help you achieve your goals & I’d appreciate the same!

Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts and dreams. Thank you to each and every one of my clients who helped me achieve some of my 2018 goals.

Xoxo,

Hannah

Bonneville Salt Flats Styled Elopement

This Utah styled elopement was a pure dream to be apart of and capture. The location, the details, the weather, the couple & the vendors were all amazing. It was so cool being able to work with other creators and artists in another state. It’s so honoring having them participate and help create this vision I had for the photoshoot, without me even knowing my entire vision.

The Bonneville Salt Flats should be on every adventurous person’s bucket list. This Midwest girl couldn’t get over that there’s a huge, wide, open space of just salt. Literally SALT. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit Tom and I tasted it :) Perfect for margs & taco Tuesday.

If you’re an adventurous bride & wanting to elope in Utah or any unique location, take me with you & I promise I’ll create romantic, initiate, authentic and raw moments you’ll remember forever. My dream is to capture an elopement this next year, so please reach out & let’s see what magic we can create together!

Huge thank you to the vendors who contributed. Couldn’t have done this without them! If you are in Utah - highly recommend these businesses!

Dress: Chantel Lauren Designs

Rug: The Boheme Project

Florals: BloomDCo Florals

Models: Travis & Becca Huber

Videography: Tom Shoaff