November 27, 2009

A Country Wedding in Autumn

I can't possibly choose a favorite part of this wedding day, this couple, their friends, their families....despite the cool weather, the soggy ground and the misty air, David and Jenny's wedding day was perfect.

We took lots of photos at Jenny's family farm where she grew up just next to the Wisconsin border in LaCresent MN. The fall colors, the green hills dotted with cows and the beautiful fence and out buildings were stunning.
Jenny wore a beautiful Calvin Kline dress and vintage costume jewelry that David's mother found in an old house they purchased. She was a classic beauty in every way.
At one point at the reception site, I remember turning to my assistant and saying, "now THIS is how you do a country wedding."

November 10, 2009

Fifty-six stories above the ground in Dallas, in a revolving restaurant no less, Donovan and Michael walked into their reception, finally Husband and Husband. Their family and friends beamed with joy, and I couldn't help but join them.

Sadly, they had to wed in Connecticut, because the very state where they found their love, refuses to acknowledge it. Most people who know me, know this is a close subject to my heart and one that I'm quite vocal about....LOVE IS LOVE, no matter whom you love, and all love deserves respect and validation.

It means a lot that Michael and Donovan chose me and asked me to shoot their reception in Dallas, Texas. The Grooms, along with their guests, were amazing, and I had a great time, shooting and socializing.

Thanks Guys! Cheers to you and congrats!

What dreams are made of

How can I not love my job? Nearly every weekend, I'm surrounded by love and have the unique opportunity to capture and preserve it again and again.
Excuse the cliche, but Eric and Liz are beautiful inside and out, truly. (please, you can't deny that they're one hot couple, but it's so much more then their smile and eyes.) Hearing the stories of what they've given to each other and their families, including a liver from Liz to her brother, it's hard not to be touched and drawn into their love story.

I smiled and laughed with them, and cried when Liz's Father gave a truly moving speech. I was honored to have been there for their wedding, and wish them a lifetime of happiness!

September 29, 2009

I was "gently" reminded by a friend the other day that I was behind in my blogging.....again. lol. ok ok.
so, what has Chelsea Morning Photography been up to?
THIS (Liz)

THIS (2009 Mankato PowWow)

THIS (Andy and Danielle's wedding)

THIS (April)

It's been a really busy month as you can see! I have an exciting October coming up, as I'll be showing all month at Bliss Java in Mankato (Corner of Liberty and Front). My official opening reception is the evening of October 8th, but feel free to stop by any time during the month to view my work. Not only will I be showcasing some of my portfolio work, but will also be displaying some photos taken of residents at CADA (commitee against domestic abuse). Three very brave women shared their stories with me and allowed me to photograph them. Please take the time to read their stories and hopefully donate to CADA as they help so many women get out of abusive relationships and give them a safe haven.

September 8, 2009

summer's end

It was a beautiful labor day weekend in Minnesota. The weekend always seems to be a double edged sword though, as we enjoy the three days of warm sun, but knowing that the weekend signifies the unofficial end to summer and it's heated days. Nevertheless, it's my favorite weekend of the year.
Jason and I were married on Sunday of labor day weekend in 2001, so naturally I think it's the best weekend for a wedding. Jenny and Andonis were married this weekend at a beautiful site in Stillwater, MN, with their reception following at Rush Creek in Maplewood. The gardens, the sun and the bride were all perfect. Thank you to a great couple for sharing their special day!

August 25, 2009

Wedding in Sibley Park

It was a questionable weather day for Mike and Mary's outdoor wedding. The clouds couldn't make up their mind and with every 10 passing minutes, there was a a different sky. It was lovely and sunny though when the bride pulled up to make her entrance at Sibley Park, and with the exception of a few misty raindrops, the ceremony went off without a hitch!

Thanks for having me be a part of your day!

August 6, 2009

urban exploring

My good friend Kersten and I love spending an afternoon now and again exploring our area, the parts you don't normally see---the underbelly if you will. It's the part with the most character though, and usually provide great photography backdrops. While we were out the other day, I took a few shots of Kersten. She's gotten used to being my guinea pig.

August 3, 2009

sometimes two heads are better then one

My friend and fellow photographer, David Van Amber asked if I'd be his second shooter yesterday for the wedding of Kristen and John. I've always enjoyed shooting together with another photographer, and often have a second shooter or assistant photographer with me on shoots as well. David and I have different approaches and styles, which is even better, because it's a great mix of things and we play off each other well. When he was in doing formals of the guys in the church, I stole the girls for some outdoor shots, and then the guys when it was the girls turn in the church. After the ceremony we followed their party bus and I jumped out when we got to Como Park, while David stayed with the van, avoiding a parking ticket. When the party bus pulled into a sports bar though, I relaxed in the sun for a few minutes while David captured the shots and cheers. Sometimes it's nice to have a team.

I've been asked before if it's hard to be friends with your "competition." Although technically, yes, David is my competition, and both of us have lost jobs to the other before, I think we see each other more as fellow artists and are constantly talking about ideas together or new technology or even marketing ideas. I value the knowledge of every photographer friend I have. We also refer jobs to each other, if we're booked or it's not in our style area, it's nice to have a circle of photographer friends and associates to turn clients to.

Back to the wedding though....Another really fun couple made for another really fun day. Thanks!

July 2, 2009

Take 2

I got together with Fish Frye again yesterday, the band, not the food. Although they really liked their first photo shoot, I offered to do an additional shoot so we could explore a couple different locations, especially on a day where weather was on our side.
First we headed to the alley between the Mankato parking ramp and the Mankato Place Mall (part of the barmuda triangle).

Joe had a good idea to go over to the Kato Ballroom. The Kato has been around for over 50 years, and in its hay day put on shows from some of the classics, including Louis Armstrong, Buddy Holly, Chubby Checker, Waylon Jennings and Johnny Cash, just to name a few. I mentioned how great it would be if we could actually go on top of the building by the sign, and before you knew it, we were banging on the door to see if anyone was around. Luckily, Joe knew the manager, and he gladly gave us a ladder and the go ahead. It was beyond fun being up there, and now I'm trying to think of new excuses to do so soon!

June 30, 2009

Two friend in Love

I couldn't be happier for two of my good friends who just recently got engaged. John finally popped the question to Colleen a couple weeks ago, and asked me to take some engagement and family photos while I was in Chicago for the weekend.

It's sort of a mini "Brady Bunch" with their his and hers children---they're going to make an amazing family. They're great parents with great kids.
Thanks for having me shoot you guys!

June 29, 2009

Mother Nature has been quite cooperative with me and my wedding photography this year....that is until this weekend. I was back in Illinois shooting the wedding of Matt and Rachel. It was a beautiful afternoon---problem was, they weren't getting married in the afternoon, they were getting married at 7pm, and there was a severe thunderstorm watch starting at 5pm.

Midway through the ceremony the thunder was clapping and rolling, but it was a beautiful evening ceremony nevertheless. The real problems started though when the bride and groom were making their "escape"...and it was quite a hurried escape and not the picturesque one intended. They were taking an antique Model A to the reception---oh, and did I mention it had no windows? The bride was still all smiles though.

We did the majority of the formals with a backdrop and studio lights at the reception site since we couldn't do outdoor photos that day. The bride and groom were EXTREMELY good sports about the whole thing.

Congratulations Matt and Rachel!

New Ink

I'm officially a walking advertisement for myself. :) I got my logo tattooed on my forearm on Friday. (minus the wording and banners)
My favorite tattoo artist, Omar Guttierez, at Revolution Tattoo in Chicago spent a few hours perfecting it. Omar also did my "crafty pirate" tattoo about a year and a half ago. No one else is allowed to tattoo on my left arm but him...that's how much I like his work.

so, without further latest addition:

here's a couple shots of the tattoo studio--if you're in Chicago and thinking about new ink, DEFINITELY go to revolution, hell, even if you're NOT in Chicago---it's worth the trip!

Fish Frye

no, not the food or event, the band.
I've known Ann for over 12 years now, as we used to work together at the university. She was one of the few "cool" people and I loved her from the very start. Although I haven't worked at the university for a long time, she still does, and she's still cool. :)
Ann is half of Fish Frye....a terrific local band. Her counterpart, Joe Tugas and Ann are quirky, fun, and extremely talented, and lucky me, they asked me to help them out with new photos!
You can check out the band at