Farm Fresh love: Blue Ridge Mountain wedding

When you work out with total babes and co work with amazing dress designers, you wind up with really fit clients in couture gowns! What can I say? When I started Rose Photo 5 years ago after 5 years freelancing in the portrait and wedding world, I knew my mission: find beautiful settings, capture pretty people, wearing gorgeous fashion. Being the daughter of a fashion designer I grew up surrounded by bolts of beautiful fabric. As a student photography since a young age, I learned to paint with light and often my canvas was my mom’s sewing room. Fast forward the tape to current life, and this makes my job creating beautiful wedding imagery a very enjoyable walk in the park. That’s not to say my job is easy, far from it in fact!! It’s the hardest job I’ve ever loved… so far;) I think when you truly love something, it not only shows but it is also infused into every little thing one does to support the vision. Even when my camera is set down, I see the shot, the way the light dances and the colors, textures and patterns that would make the perfect photo. Leading with love makes for lovely images, easy as that! Now preparing the timeline, getting the gear in order and obsessing over edits, is an entirely different topic. But let’s keep the focus on the lovely images, shall we??

When this babe of bride told me about her engagement to her Puerto Rican beaux and their plans to have a perfectly picturesque, outdoors wedding in the Blue Ridge Mountains, I jumped at the chance to grab my camera. Then, when she said she was having her gown made custom by one of my favorite designers in Asheville, I couldn’t wait a minute longer for her to confirm our contract! Angela Kim designs timeliness silhouettes and drapes laces so perfectly even her sample gowns are stunning! I know because she made a one of her one of kind pant suits for me to wear to my little sister’s Chicago wedding this past holiday season.

Beautiful bride in a stunning gown, check! Good looking groom with rhythm and a great smile, check! Vintage chic, outdoor venue with charming tree swing, organic garden and chickens, check! All that is left on the wedding day check list to be sure all the love that surrounds this darling couple is perfectly captured and no kiss is left behind. After all, the reason for the season is LOVE and it is the job of any good wedding photographer to see the love all around, even when it isn’t a #weddingday!!

To Katie + Mike a million times thanks for sharing your love story with Rose Photo. I loved capturing your beautiful moments of kindness and true love. You both inspire genuine connection to all the good people you’ve surrounded yourself with and it’s really clear to see that when documenting your big day.

love,

Rose + Co

Gorgeous Indian Wedding in Cancún, Q.R., Mexico

When our very favorite wedding planner called on our team to meet another of his stunning brides, we where beyond thrilled to hear the news that his team was planning an Indian Wedding in Mexico for spring of 2019. Then, when we met this amazing couple behind this international and multi-cultural adventure, we fell in love even more with our next project. The Rose Photo mission is to genuinely connect with our client’s love story so we can journey with them, even if out of country, on destination wedding. We love to tell story as bold and colorful as the world we live in. When offered the opportunity to travel out of the United States to vibrant Mexico , our answer was a big ol’ YES PLEASE !

Before grabbing our passports and catching our flights out of Chicago’s O'Hare International Airport, we began with our wedding photo coverage at Theater on the Lake with our couple as their friends and family gathered for an amazing Sangeet- the perfect pre game to any celebration, focused on dancing until you cannot dance anymore! The night’s program, complete with Bollywood infused dance numbers performed by cousins, aunties and uncles, parents and siblings of the couple where spectacular. Their super high energy and well choreographed dance moves set the tempo for the next round of events to come as we traveled to the destination wedding venue in May! Sure to be inspired by the cultural traditions this wedding celebration was built around and the beautiful wedding venue our couple decided on, the combo of the traditional Indian wedding events on the Riveria Maya promised to be packed with amazing photo ops!!

To say that the location chosen for the most epic wedding we’v seen yet was stunning is vast understatement. The site lines and architecture in and around the property at Nizuc are perfection. Then add our beautiful couple dressed to the nines, not once but on 4 different occasions for what can only be described as a dream come true for our RP Photo Crew ! To have so many options for incredible back drops AND costume changes is the stuff we build our pro photo, vision boards on. And as child of a fashion designer, I personally tend to go a little overboard on textures, colors and patterns of fabrics. Thankfully, our gorgeous bride also has amazing taste in fashion so her incredibly detailed lenghas where breathtaking. The black and red style she wore to the welcome reception at Nizuc’s beautiful La Punta was designed by Mani Jassal . Her wedding day lengha was perfectly stitched and detailed by Sabyasachi and our bride’s final look for her black tie reception was created by Shyamal & Bhumika. Whilst this was not Rose Photo’s first Indian wedding, the occasion to travel to find new photo locations and the best possible back drops that perfectly suit our couple is always, always high on our list of perks of the job.

From the start of the Ganesh Puja, on through the Haldi & Mehndi preparations, through the next morning’s first look prior to wedding ceremony and even as we prepared for killer portraits prior to their final party of the weekend, P + A where absolutely themselves, super kind and dialed into their family and friends around them; which we must reiterate is the reason for the season! It is exactly why we get so excited to dial into other peoples’ story, to come to know their family, their friends and their style of loving. It’s what drives our excitement as we prepare for wedding photos, what builds these captures, and keeps us going during the countless hours on the ground and in post production ! Without our beautiful clients and their families, our photo work would be largely just architecture shots; but perfectly place beautiful people in gorgeous places, and viola: we have a highlight reel of wedding portraiture we like to call art !!

To our dear couple, their incredible friends and family, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for including Rose Photo on your dearest celebrations….all of them :) The incredible energy that is builds throughout the multiple days of revelry in your honor is contagious and inspires us to keep our cameras clicking, even when an Auntie’s arm should whip (accidentally) in the direction of a camera and cause a small black eye ( true story but I got the shot!) It is truly our honor and privilege to be a part of the action and to share with you all our ways of seeing your love. We can’t wait for the next party!!

love,

Rose + Co

TRUE LOVE STORY: when Annie met Paul

When my little sister came home one Christmas morning at 4am after meeting her now husband, let me just say, I was not initially impressed. While it is a family tradition for all our cousins to head to the local dive bar for after dinner drinks …errrr shots, I’m the old lady of the bunch that prefers to stay home and cuddle with family dog on the couch instead. I wasn’t sure what kinda guy would keep a gal up late and out on Christmas night but it turns out Paul is the kinda guy that makes sure a gal is home on Christmas morning! In any case, that fateful Christmas eve would go down in history as the night Annie met Paul.

Fast forward the tape through many a family crisis, the death of our dear mother and all the interesting ups and downs a new relationship can have in it’s salad days, and these two love birds continue to impress me with the evolution of their love and #relationshipgoals. Whilst their engagement was long and full of it’s challenges, it certainly proved their dedication to one another and when getting to the altar became next steps, Annie + Paul where just as inventive and creative as they’d been in growing with each other in their first few years dating; he with his strong loyalty to his awesome group of friends and dear family and she with her dedication to keeping it classy and always being the hostess with the mostess.

Since our mom, Marie, had passed away in the initial year of Annie + Paul meeting, wedding planning took an unusual and out of the box twist when the two dreamt up the idea to have their ceremony prerecorded at our hometown, vintage movie house, The Tivoli Theater . Both Annie + Paul grew up seeing movies at the ‘Tiv’ and they thought it extra special to have a slightly more private take on their vows. The ceremony would then be shared as a surprise unveil to their guests at their winter wedding. Super untraditional and really creative, all the small pieces of creating that endearing film will remain one of my favorite wedding ceremonies ever. I only wish our mom could have been there with our combined family but we know for sure she watched from above.

Of the 250 friends + family on the guest list, only very few knew that the ceremony had already happened. The showcasing of the short film in place of the live exchange of vows was another unconventional and sweet twist on the standard wedding approach. Aside from the Tivoli surprise, Paul had a number of super heartfelt and really thoughtful moves up his very dapper, white tuxedo sleeves on wedding night . Though prior to #Pannie’s grand entrance into the wedding reception when the two where announced in at the video’s end, Paul + Annie went for a totally different look at their wedding ceremony. Paul wore his army greens and Annie rocked one of our mom’s favorite dresses, from every girl’s favorite shop, Anthro. And of course, always with amazing floral accents from Annie’s + my very fave storefront florist in Chicago, Asrai Garden. Whilst the two opted for just video coverage of the ceremony, I couldn’t help but bring my camera for a few captures at the theater, just after they said ‘I do’, really in love and really outside of the wedding box!

When it came time to wedding day, with the ceremony having already been captured, my team worked on developing a calm timeline so we could create truly stunning portraits of Paul + Annie’s combined families, the shimmer of the season and, of course, set in a gorgeous location. One of my favorite things to do as a photographer is scout the best backdrops for the best wedding portraits. Can we say…out of the box one more time ?? Specifically since my sister and soon to be brother in law - btw he wouldn’t say they where hubs and wife until December 22 was all tied up!! - but since the two of them wanted to focus on being with all the people they love so much and really just hosting THE BEST HOLIDAY WEDDING EVER, I wanted to be sure the Rose Photo fly on the wall approach to documenting moments was spot on - especially on that crazy dance floor - and our portrait game was strong. You might even peek a photo of me shooting in my Sunday best below and a few cameos in family formals, too !! I’m so in love with all the Christmas inspired shots from that big day but since it’s now February, I’ll save a little of that holiday bokeh for next Christmas season and share just a few here.

Paul + Annie gave me one more job beside running photo crew on wedding day. It was big sis on the mic as I pined over a little welcome speech and a few general MC duties. I fell right back into my age old, obviously not shy, show pony role as Master of Ceremony! Another slight nod to our mom, Marie, because a) she is our fashion queen forever b) to shield any ugly crying and c) also be fabulous, I had to accessorize with some very large sunglasses . Even though I wrote my speech 5 or 6 times on my smartphone, I ended up rewriting it the night before the wedding, on napkins. Ever the classy show pony, I delivered said speech in fancy Gucci’s from a paper towel like a good ‘Sister of Honor’ would do!!

To Annie + Paul, thank you so much for including me, my photo crew and our collective vision to see your wedding into photo memories! It is always a privilege to capture any love story and though we are family, it is my true honor to have the occasion to not only observe your love but also to make chronicle of it and a bit of commentary, too. I’ll pass the mic back now but only because Annie is in great hands of dear Paul.

love,

Rose + Co

love is still love: Mexican Destination Wedding

Have you ever heard of the Mexican Snowbird? It’s sorta like the Florida Snowbird but a bit more colorful and full of shiny brilliance than it’s cousin and only makes occasional flights to select ports!! You know, many local Chicagoans get through our long winters by dodging the snow and heading for sunnier locales, just like any good snowbird would :) So in honor of the 1 year anniversary of two lovely humans finding each other and making it legal, let’s talk about birds of a feather and how incredible it is when you find your love dove, shall we??

It’s always our honor and privilege to travel for weddings, to be both a fly on the wall documenting all the amazing moments and to be included in the flock that appreciates that love is love. Rose Photo believes through and through that true love knows no limits and that there is always room to celebrate equally. When these two gentlemen met each other, they will both tell you that they each knew right away they’d met their darling dove. I’m unsure if it was love at first sight; maybe it was love at first sniff or even love at first sound?? In any case, these guys knew it so immediately and followed up on that hunch with an intimate yet very colorful display of their undying affection in Puerto Vallarta Jalisco, Mexico one year ago today. Surrounded by just under 100 of their nearest and dearest, Adam + Jaime joined flight force to be sure to love together, trust together, travel together and grow together. They first began their wedding weekend in a traditional Mayan ceremony blessing their union. Then, the next day, with bow ties on, in multilingual, Spanish and English ceremony, the two made it official with happy tears and honest declaration of their union.

One of the shiniest parts of this celebration of love was the floral! Adam is a very talented florist so no flower detail went unnoticed; complete with orchid purses for the flower girls designed by Adam and his amazing team !!!! With a picture perfect photo tour through old the Old Town area of PV, we captured some really fun, very editorial images of our couple and their dream team in a historic chapel and naturally with their flock of fancy lady birds! The day was magic and truly, even weeks later in the edit bay, our team was feeling the emotionality of the day. We never have the same work day twice and couples so in love like Adam + Jaime make that real.

Having dodged the Chicago winter and hosted a very classy destination wedding, these dapper Snowbirds set out for their next flight pattern on a European tour, holding true their promise to grow and travel together. Adam surprised Jaime with a multi-stop honeymoon to London, Paris and Rome , how very romantic!! Certainly traveling can show you so much of the world and even more of your travel partner. We are happy to wish our beautiful couple all the adventures in flight as birds of a feather, after all, love doves mate for eternity!!

Jaime + Adam happy Anniversary to you !! It was a pleasure to document the beginning of your love story and we wish you many more adventures together.

love,

Rose + Co

Chicago Indian Wedding where East meets West


The very first wedding I ever photographed- all be it completely unplanned and possibly unwarranted - was in India when I spent a semester studying the continent’s myriad of culture and colors. I was attending that wedding as a guest and when my trusted host literally pushed me into the mix and shouted to me ‘start shooting!’, I did just that. Of course, I now know it’s really not a pro move to step in the way of the photographer actually hired to capture the full storyline. Nonetheless, I was immediately swallowed by the colors, patterns and amazing tempo that South Asian weddings exude. As a forever student of photography, even then I had a camera on hand: a 35mm film, a small tank of a Nikon. Needless to say, I’ve not stopped capturing the colorful world around me since being pushed into that wheel of excitement so many years ago.

At the risk of having this ‘Dear Diary’ entry run on and on, I am excited to share this highlight reel featuring each chapter of P + D ’s wedding weekend. The plentitude of rich color, delicious texture, perfect patterns and above all else, love, makes choosing faves for this teaser set extra challenging and so much fun! As we enter into the American holidays of bounty and brightness on this side of the pond, I want to take a minute and think on why I love doing what I do and just how it fills me with so much light and love to share this work with the world.

My team and I are like a small band of sociologists with cameras. With one look at our captures below, you’ll see all things merry and bright; from the mehndi through the pithi and onto the sangeet, and certainly through the wedding day, the deeply saturated colors and emotion of everyone involved are palpable. This, in fact, is one of the first memories I still carry with me from that inaugural Indian wedding I captured on film during my undergrad studies. In fact, this wedding weekend also coincided with the Indian holiday of Diwali, which literally translates into the festival of light, perfect timing as our days grow shorter and darker into the winter season in Chicago and the around the world.

Both our bride and groom’s family was above and beyond involved in keeping the energy level high and the spirits bright all wedding weekend. From the start of high tea, through the many dance performances of Friday night’s program at Theater on The Lake , all the way to the last dance at Rockwell on the River, our father of the bride was alive with so much synergy and excitement for his daughter’s wedding that we couldn’t help being carried away with his exuberant laughter and dancing! I love how the parades within parades carry the emotionality of these two individuals coming together in front of their entire circles of friends and families. Our groom’s grand entrance on a white motorcycle was a super cool spin on the traditional baraat entrance and our bride designed her second look for the evening: a classic silk pantsuit, complete with a detachable skirt from one of our very favorite bridal houses in Chicago, Mira Couture. At every turn of this weekend’s celebrations, the style, elegance, and glam sparkled perfectly. Then again, anytime we have the occasion to work with the brilliant team at Events by Nisar + Yanni Designs, we can’t keep our shutters still because gorgeous wedding photo ops are everywhere! Exhibit A: THE 5 TIERED CAKE by Cake is pretty much a show stopper on its own accord!

Simply put, the energy of long wedding weekends like this one is just magnetic and it truly keeps our entire team a buzz for days after the celebration has been tied up with a great bow! I am so very grateful and thankful for the brilliant vendors that help us create such beautiful captures of culture, color, movement, and momentum. Truly, without them, our work couldn’t shine as bright!

I was trying to keep this post a-political but with an undergrad in Political Science, I usually can’t avoid the subject altogether, especially lately. So please pardon me briefly as I step onto my small soapbox. I see it as my job to use my resources in the world to lead with love and share on the platforms I have access to; to use the tools of my trade in the best way I know how and lead my team with careful kindness on all of our projects. I’ve had the opportunity to travel and see outside of the confines of my own experience so that I can better understand the world around me. Compassion and love know no skin color, no state, no religion, and no gender. Our lenses get to serve as a mirror to our vibrant and incredible world full of love and light so that the reflection we create can outshine anyone who tries to lead our world into darkness. In working in the world of weddings where the talk is all about love, sparkly details, perfect uplighting and who has designed what, I think it’s really important for my team to keep our eyes on the prize: the focus is really on connectivity and care. After all, isn’t that why people get married?

I am forever grateful for my skills as a wedding photographer, for my team that listens aptly to my crazy, creative ideas and executes them and, of course, for our dear couples that entrust their love story with us.

P + D, a million thanks to you, your beautiful families and all the incredible love you shared with us last weekend. Your killer dance moves, indelible style, layers of generation standing in support of your love story are all the making of our photographic daydreams. We love your love and couldn’t do what we do without it! Thank you.

love,

Rose + Co