Candice + Joe: Wedding Day
I can’t believe how fast this past year has flown by. Due to COVID, Candice and Joe made the difficult decision to postpone their 2020 wedding date exactly one year, to August 1st of 2021. Candice and Joe actually live in California, so with everything going on it didn’t make sense for them to fly back to Cincinnati and gather with their friends from multiple states (states so far away that most of their friends had no idea that Ohio and Kentucky were next to each other, haha!) so postponing their wedding date was a difficult, but necessary, thing to do. Candice & Joe have been together for eleven years now and really wanted me to focus on capturing all of the natural moments that candidly happened throughout their wedding day. Let me just say, it was such an honor to capture this day for them and I know that all of these wonderfully candid moments capture such an incredible story.
I started my morning off by meeting Candice & Joe and a few of their friends at their hotel in Newport. Candice and Joe wanted to spend their wedding day focusing on the love between them, not necessarily all of the typical wedding day traditions. One of the ways that they did this was by sharing a hotel room and getting ready together. No highly anticipated first look or walk down the aisle, no big bridal party, just the two of them getting ready to start their marriage, together. When my now husband and I flew off out to Washington to elope, we also got ready together in our hotel room. I love how special and memorable that time was, so I know that Candice and Joe will appreciate these memories as well! As Candice’s sister Leslie was finishing up Candice’s makeup, her friends brought her coffee, tomato soup, and a grilled cheese. The absolute best pre-wedding meal! I also LOVE how I was able to capture so many moments where Joe was just admiring Candice from across the room. She may not have noticed, but I know that she’ll love the photos that show it! How sweet!
After they were ready, we headed over to Covington to take a few photos of Joe and Candice together before their ceremony. We had an absolutely beautiful sunny day and I love how these photos turned out. Believe it or not, as soon as we drove from the park to their venue, the sky opened up and we had a complete downpour of rain. It stopped right before their ceremony and it was wonderful to see how the timing of everything worked out so perfectly!
Another one of my favorite parts about Joe & Candice’s wedding day was that they decided that they didn’t want to “hide” from their guests before their ceremony. Instead of staying in a back room or showing up to their ceremony right before they walked down the aisle, they built their timeline around greeting guests as they walked into their venue. Their ceremony and reception were both at Headquarters Event Center in Newport (the CUTEST little place!) and we were able to capture so many candid moments before their ceremony started since they spent their extra time mingling with their guests! Such a unique addition to their wedding day and I love how it turned out!
Let’s move on to their ceremony. Ohhhh my. This ceremony was incredible. Candice, Joe, and Leslie (Candice’s sister and officiant) had everyone feeling ALL of their emotions. From laughing to crying, this ceremony was so unbelievably special. I won’t go into too much detail, but I did want to share a few of my favorite parts. To start their ceremony off, Candice decided to read a few entries from a journal she had written when she met Joe ELEVEN years ago. This was not only the cutest thing, but it also gave such perspective on how much their relationship has grown and changed. It was so sweet to see how smitten she was with him and how she would be so determined to take the next step in their relationship and just give him a hug before they parted ways after class. SO sweet! When I spoke with Candice a few weeks ago to go over last minute wedding details before the big day, I asked if there were any special moments that I should know about during the ceremony. She said that she and Joe really wanted to do some sort of unity ceremony, but they aren’t very religious and didn’t want anything too cheesy. What would be something unique? They decided that instead of a unity candle or sand ceremony, they were going to take unity shots of tequila instead. How FUN! This was easily one of the best ceremonies I’ve photographed!
After the ceremony was over, we headed out to explore a bit more of Newport. Candice and Joe were awesome enough to schedule two separate times for couples portraits and by this time, all the rain that came earlier in the day had disappeared and we had beautiful overcast skies. We were able to find SO many incredible places for photos and I love that these photos look so different from the ones we took in the park earlier in the day.
After finishing up with photos, it was time to party! We started the night off with LaRosa’s for dinner (which is the perfect Cincinnati meal for so many people from out of town!) before kicking off speeches. Candice & Joe are surrounded by so many people who love and care for them and this was even more obvious when listening to their friends share all of their kind words about them and their relationship. After speeches, we headed out to the dance floor for Candice & Joe’s first dance. Instead of just slow dancing, Candice and Joe spun around the room making faces at one another and cracking each other up. It was SO incredibly sweet and I love how their photos turned out! Joe also danced with his mom, Candice with her dad, and at the end of the night Candice with her sister Leslie. The dance floor was packed, the desserts were incredible (why had I never had a cake ball before this night?!?) and everyone had the best time.
Candice and Joe, congratulations again on finally being able to get married and celebrate with so many people that you love! I am over the moon excited for you two to officially start married life together. Thank you SO much for trusting me to capture such a big day for you, it was an absolute dream!