Being asked to document this wedding meant the world to me. Not only is Tina a fellow talented wedding photographer but more importantly she is a great friend. When she called and asked me to come to Kentucky and document her wedding to Aaron I was over the moon excited.
I met Tina years ago when she attended the Foundation Workshop. I was teaching that year and she was a student. I remember it vividly. We were driving to the final dinner that night and we were a bit lost. Tina was in the backseat helping me find the way. While the others in the car talked and sang to what the dj in the passenger seat was pumping out, Tina jumped in and her and I were figuring it out. I hardly knew her at this point and I remember saying to her, ” I like the way you think”. The friendship grew from there.
Tina is the owner of Vrai Photography, based out of Kentucky. Besides being a very talented photographer she and her husband Aaron are avid rock climbers. The love of the out doors is what took them from Chicago to Kentucky. So having the wedding there in Kentucky pretty much at the base of cliff made total sense.
The morning of the wedding started with a climb. What was supposed to be a perfectly clear day ended up being wet. I met them and their group of close climbing friends that morning for what would turn out to be the inspiration for Tina’s vows later that day. What a glorious morning that was. I was met at the site by Tina and Aaron and their sweet daughter Ayla. Soon car loads full of their closest friends rolled in and they all went to work. Like a well oiled machine working to beat the rain they gathered their gear and we headed up the hill to the rock. Rock climbing in the rain is not easy but they were determined to climb on their wedding day. Considering that is now they met there was no way anything was going to stop them.
Aaron made his way up the rock first making it look easy. By then the rain had picked up and Tina was shouting up to him saying she was unsure she could make it. He yelled down, ” You can do it babe. I will pull you all the way up if I have to”. That is all she needed and away she went. At the top their friend snapped a photo on his iphone of a moment the two of them will never forget. It ended up being the perfect day. What a joy it was to watch their relationship and how they both compliment each other. More importantly I got an early chance to see them in action with their daughter. Even Ayla made her way up a rock.
The rest of the day would unfold the same way with unending moments of support and love from not only each other but their closest of friends and family.
I was honored to be a part of it. Shooting weddings for other photographers is something I love doing. It was a bonus to be able to do it for a close friend.
Thank you Tina, Aaron and Ayla for letting me into your lives.
Ayla has had this stocking cap since she was born. I loved the hole in it.
Tina standing by as Ayla learns the way of rock climbing.
Aaron on his way up.
Tina working hard to fight the rain.
The iphone photo from the top. So glad there was someone there that could climb up with them to record the moment.
They made it.
Tina feels most at home in the woods. So getting ready in a cabin surrounded by Kentucky forest was perfect.
Amanda helping Tina get dressed in the woods, just like Tina did for her at her wedding.
Aaron waiting for the ceremony to start no where else but in the woods.
Ayla walked her dad down the aisle and they waited for Tina.
Tina and her parents making their way down the aisle.
The rings on some climbing gear.
Both vows were very emotional.
My favorite moment of the wedding. Tina’s grandpa reading his 12 things for a guaranteed happy marriage as the couple soak it all in.
This was awesome. After the ceremony Tina, Aaron and Ayla shared a dance while the ceremony musicians, also friends, played.
It was a little cold that day.
The place was surrounded by photographers.
Ayla not happy with having to say goodbye to mom as she left to hang out in the kids cabin.
I guess it was a new suit.
Time for some fast portraits.
The reception was held at The Rockhouse. A resturant in the Red River Gorge that Aaron built, opened and runs. Every detail in the wedding had meaning to the couple. They were all either donated, built, or given to them by guests.
Taking a shot with the Rockhouse staff in the kitchen.
The night got kicked off with a killer DJ out of Chicago.
The Rockhouse closed for wedding.
As a gift to you for making it to the end of this post go here to see their slideshow- https://vimeo.com/54625681 password: rockhouse