Tuesday, July 27, 2010

White Eagle

I love exploring new places I've never been to before. It makes me feel like I'm on vacation even if it's relatively close to home. Saturday's wedding of Tim and Christa brought to the White Eagle Conference Center in Hamilton, NY. I've shot weddings in Manlius and Cazenovia, but this brought me farther east in to uncharted territory.
Even though Long Island is a concrete jungle, there is the occasional oasis of tranquility. One of those places was just outside of my neighborhood, tucked between Jericho Turnpike and Route 106. There was a Quaker Meeting House on Old Jericho Turnpike dating back to the 1600's. One of the founders of Jericho and Hicksville, Elias Hicks is buried there. Ironically, he also had a hand in founding the hamlet of Farmington up here in the Finger Lakes just north of Canandaigua.
The White Eagle Conference Center reminded me of that old Quaker Meeting House. There was a small colonial like village there, complete with a saloon and an old church. Tim and Christa had there ceremony in the church. Before the ceremony, we walked around the small village and did photos among the old buildings and including a covered bridge.
Tim and Christa wanted something different for their wedding. They certainly found it nestled in the hills of Central New York.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Rain Rain Go Away

It was another soggy wedding weekend with weddings at Ravenwood Golf Club in Victor on Friday and White Eagle Conference Center on Saturday. We've all heard the expression, "It's not the heat, it's the humidity." Well this weekend was so humid that every time I went from indoors to outdoors my lenses would fog up. I had to make sure I kept them away from air conditioning sources to minimize their chill.
Friday's wedding of Rachael and Brendan was the first time I've shot at Ravenwood. It's a beautiful golf club just north of the Village of Victor, NY. The rain let up just before the ceremony at Crosswinds Church in Canandaigua. We did photos after the ceremony on the pier in Canandaigua at the boathouses and then headed up to Ravenwood to squish our way around the course in a golf cart caravan. Rachael and Brendan were great, putting up with uncomfortable conditions to get cool shots.


I could hear my heart beating in my chest as my feet pounded the cinders. When I started, my feet felt light as a feather, like they had wings. They slowly metamorphisized in to lead weights. Surely if I jumped in to a lake their mass would have dragged my straight to the bottom. My breathing went from controlled to desperate, which was followed by waves of nausea. I could feel the color drain from my face, my cheeks jiggling with each step. I might have even been drooling, but in the moment I could care less. I just wanted to finish the race. The sad part was it was only 400 meters. Just one simple lap around the track. I was a sprinter but my coach asked me to do the 400. How hard could it be? It's not like it was a marathon. As I sat under the bleachers after the race with cold sweats trying not to lose the cafeteria pizza I had for lunch earlier that day, I had my answer.

The sad part is I was in the best shape of my life back then. I was 16 and invincible. I would hate to think what would happen if I tried that lap now.

The memory comes the evening after my friend Mark Lee successfully completed the Iron Man in Lake Placid. I don't know his final time, but he did finish which was the ultimate goal. He had to start with a 2.4 mile swim, then do a 112 mile bike ride and then finish with a full 26.2 mile marathon. I can't even imagine the games his mind must have been playing while he pushed his body and sanity to the limit. My hat goes off to you Mark for a job well done.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Stacey and Tom TTD

...and now, the rest of the story.  I met up with Stacey and Tom Monday morning before they headed back to Deleware for a Trash the Dress session. Sarah joined us as we headed south down Route 21 toward Naples. Our first stop was the County Rd. 12 overlook which has undoubtedly one of the best views in the Finger Lakes of Canandaigua Lake's fjord like south end. From there we headed in to Naples to Widmer Winery. We used their lush vineyard for some intimate photos.
After our visit to Widmer, we made a lunch stop at Bob and Ruth's Restaurant in Naples. While we were there the sky opened up with torrential rain. A few ambulance and emergency vehicles screamed north on 21, which I later found out was a gully rescue for a 10-year-old boy who was missing.
After lunch, we headed south to Dansville to Stony Brook State Park. I wasn't sure of the condition of the creek with the heavy rains, but everything turned out fine. It was a slow go up the trail to the waterfall with muddy conditions and more downpours. Keeping my cameras dry was a challenge.
Mother Nature soon began to cooperate for what turned out to be one of the best shoots ever.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Stacey and Tom

There are some weddings each season where everything just falls in to place. Stacey and Tom's wedding at Belhurst was one of those. Tom is a wedding photographer himself from Newark, Delaware. Initially I thought it would be stressful being under the scrutiny of a colleague, but after shooting their e-session last year, they were so cool I knew everything would be fine. In fact, it was the opposite. They were so accommodating I almost felt like they were there for me and not the other way around. They totally made me and Amanda feel like we were hanging out with friends. At the end of the night, instead of saying good bye, we said see you tomorrow for their Trash the Dress session. But that's another story...

Sign up for our eNewsletter
For Email Marketing you can trust