Smitten Engagement photos at Campus Martius and Cadillac Square

During holidays in Detroit Campus Martius and Cadillac Square Holiday Market is perfect place for engagement photos. The area is filled with local holiday shops as well as decorated and sparkling.

We stated of in the clear tent in Cadillac square that was a holiday dream filled with cozy furniture, table games and fireplaces. And then strolled through Campus Martius having fun and taking engagement photos of the loving couple

Campus Martus Winter Engagement Photos
Detroit winter engagement photo shoot at Cadillac Square
Detroit engagement photography
Cadillac Square winter engagement photo shoot
Detroit engagement photo shoot
American Canadian Couple Engagement photo Shoot with Flags
Detroit wedding photogrpher engagement

Modern and Fresh - wedding at Waterview Loft Detroit

If I would have to describe modern Detroit wedding - this one was it. From the couple getting ready at RenCen, to first look on the River walk, to creative photos around iconic Detroit places, to the wedding celebration at Waterview Loft at the Port of Detroit, to amazing fun filled matron of honor speech / song story of couples love in Motown songs. These kind of weddings is why I love being wedding photographer. Also check out their amazing engagement photos at DIA.

Waterview Loft at the Port of Detroit is one of my favorite venues. The lower level right on river walk of Detroit River is perfect with large garage door windows serves as ceremony space that gets transformed for cocktail hour and later dancing, and upper level host lovely reception space overlooking Detroit River.

Waterview loft Port of Detroti

I have been looking forward to this wedding from the time I met the couple and their amazing engagement photo shoot at DIA. And the big day was filled with laughter, love and joy.

Wedding getting ready Ren Cen Detroit
Detroit Wedding Getting Ready photos
Amazing Detroit wedding First Look Riverwalk
Detroit Wedding photogrpher
Wedding photos at Horace E. Dodge Fountain

Wedding photos at Horace E. Dodge Fountain

Detroit Wedding -Fist monument -  Joe Louis Monument
Detroit wedding inspiration
Detroit wedding photos - roof of parking lot
Detroit bride twirling on the roof
Detroit wedding parking lot photo inspiration
Waterview Loft Port of Detroit
Modern Detroit Wedding
Detroit Wedding
Detroit Wedding
Modern Detroit wedding
Amazing detroit wedding
Detroit Wedding at port of Detroit
Wedding at Port of Detroit

Stunning Wedding at Henry Ford Museum

What could me Detroit themed than having a wedding at Ford Museum / Greenfield Village. This venue is filled with gorgeous locations - we photographed couples first look in one of the courtyards and had beautiful ceremony and reception at Lovett Hall, as the celebration filled with live band, dancing and cartoonist drawing guests as well as the newlyweds.

Wedding Details Detroit photogrphy
Wedding details with Minted Wedding invitation

Stunning wedding invitations from Minted were highlighted with gold foil and made a perfect background for beautiful wedding ring detail photo.

Bride getting ready wedding photo
Adorable bride and Flower girl jumping on the bed  Wedding photo inspiration
Bride and Bridesmaids geting ready on wedding day
Henry Ford museum Detroit Wedding
First look at Henry Ford Museum Wedding Photography
Bride arriving for first look on wedding day
First look at Henry Ford Museum Wedding Photogrphy
Detroit wedding at henry Ford Museum
Detroit wedding photographer lovett Hall
Detroit Wedding
Wedding photographer
Henry Ford Museum Weddings
Michigan wedding photographer
Michigan wedding photography
Lovett hall Wedding
Sunset wedding photo inspiration Detroit

Fun engagement photo shoot at the park and the puggle

I love engagement photo shoots. I get to know the couple better before the big day, and quite often I get to meet their four legged friends.

Couple and their puggle engagement photos Detroit

If I could give one tip for couples who want to incorporate their pets, make sure you got some helping hands. Most of the time the pet is with a friend or the family member for part of the photo shoot. Sometimes the furry family member is at another location and we stop there for a bit. For this engagement photo session we started with just the couple at the park and concluded with stop at home where and adorable puggle joined us for some cute photos in the neighborhood and the yard.

Sweet enagagement photo session -  Detroit photographer
Engagement photos Detroit park
DSC00158.jpgDetroit engagement photo session
Engagement photos with puggle

Grosse Pointe Yacht Club Wedding

Grosse Pointe Yacht Club is a beautiful venue with great architecture - perfect for a wedding. On this beautiful day filled with sunshine, bride and groom celebrated they big day with friends and family, and a lot of nieces and nephews and their dog. After the emotional first look, their beautiful German shepherd posed for wedding photos.

grosse pointe yacht club wedding
Wedding Dress grosse pointe yacht club
Bride - grosse pointe yacht club wedding
First Look -grosse pointe yacht club wedding
grosse pointe yacht club wedding with german shepherd
Detroit wedding photogrpher -  grosse pointe yacht club
Detroit photogrpher- grosse pointe yacht club wedding
grosse pointe yacht club wedding
Detroit wedding photogrpher -  grosse pointe
Detroit wedding photogrpher

Rock your wedding bouquet and boutineer

Being a wedding photographer I see such a great variety of wedding flowers. Grand bouquets with big center blooms, color coordinated to match the color themes of the wedding, classic roses and some bouquets are not flowers at all.

Pink Peony and rose  bboho wedding bouquet

I love photographing flowers. I also have noticed quite a few challenges over the years of seeing wedding bouquets. Flowers are expensive. On on your special day you want them to add to the overall celebration aesthetic.

Since most of us don’t regularly handle flowers, seeking reputable florist is a great idea. They can advise you on blooms that are in season, blooms that will last though out your day as well as providing knowledge of assembling a great bouquet. However knowing some basics will set you up for a great start. In this article I’m focusing on fresh flowers

5 tips for wedding flowers.jpg

So here are my 5 tips to rock you wedding flowers.

  1. Pick blooms that are in season - these flowers will usually be the freshest and have greatest availability.

  2. Consider the wight of the bouquet - you will be carrying the flowers for quite some time. Also when consider boutineers and corsages - heaver blooms will tend to pull on fabrics and may be harder to attach. Stiffer stems also tend to break. (remember that boutineers will see some use as there will be quite a bit of hugging during the wedding day).

  3. Pay attention to how bouquet is constructed - you will handle the flowers quite a bit throughout the day - make sure to talk to the florist about how delicate are some blooms and where they should be placed in the bouquet so they don’t break

  4. Consider the climate/season and how long the flowers will be exposed to hot/ cold temperatures - tropical blooms may do better in summer, delicate blooms may start to wilt and droop when exposed to hours of heat or cold

  5. Do your research ahead of time - look up the flowers that you like ans see how well they handle as cut blooms. Consider that the photos you may see online may be prepared specifically for a photo shoot, that they may be in a controlled temperatures.




Boho Rose and Eucalyptus wedding bouquet

When I photograph flowers at the wedding - I set a goal to get my shots in as early as possible - as soon as I arrive or as soon as florist delivers them. But likely flowers will be in photos throughout the day - at the ceremony, on the table at the reception.


Tropical King Protea Wedding Bouquet


As a quick common sense note - have a paper towel or a regular towel to be able to dab water from the steams when you remove your bouquet from the vase. I’ve encountered quite a bit of improvisation when bouquets drip and sometimes leave stains on wedding and bridesmaid dresses.

Wedding bouquet -  yellow and blue with garden roses, billy balls and anemones
Floral arrangement by  Design Quintesentials

Floral arrangement by Design Quintesentials

Classic rose wedding bouquet -  red, white and gold
Modern wedding flowers- roses, dahlias and fresias

Adorable Family Photo Shoot - Indian Springs Metro Park

Indian Springs Metro Park is one of my favorite local Clarkston locations for photo sessions. We went exploring for this fun family photo session starting at Nature Discovery Center through paths in deep grass, up the hill and overlooking the beautiful area. The pond glistening behind us. This location has so much to offer when it comes to photography and it is a great place to take kids exploring and running, and having fun.

Fun Clarkston Family Photo Shoot.jpg


We didn’t get to see any wildlife this time, but I have seen bunnies and listened to lovely birds singing.

Depending on the season you choose to visit and explore the area, I suggest bringing bug spray in summer seasons, since the park has tall grass and several ponds… and , yes, quite a few mosquitoes.

Family photogrpher Clarkston
Clarkston Family photo Shoot
Clarkston photographer
Fall family photo shoot at Indian Springs

So if you want fun photos, for family, seniors or engagements - Indian Springs Metro park is a great location if you are a Clarkston photographer

Iranian American Wedding on Ovation Yacht

At this Iranian American wedding on Detroit river drums and dancing filled the Ovation Yacht as the couple started their wedding journey.

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We started on lake St Clair Beach with a first look and some bridal party photos and then headed onto Ovation Yacht. As the yacht departed the port drummers brought guests and bride to the deck for the grand entrance and the ceremony.

Iranin American wedding Ovation
lake St Clair Wedding
Iranin Wedding Drummers
Iranina American Detroit Wedding

I love seeing cultural traditions at weddings as families blend and start new journeys.

Detroit wedding photogrpher
Bride and groom on ovation Yacht Detroit
First dance Ambassador bridge Ovation yacht

As we approached Ambassador Bridge, couple started their first dance.

Detroit wedding

And the fun began with guests joining in festivities

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Amazing Engagement Photo Shoot on Belle Isle

This engagement photo shoot on Belle Isle was filled with laughter and love. The brides hair in long locks made me think of Rapunzel or Sansa from Game of Thrones. And the couple was so smitten and fun and made me love my job with every photo we took .

Belle Isle Engagement Photo Inspoiration
Belle isle Conservancy Engagement

I love photographing on Belle Isle with ton of great locations around the park. Weeping willows create romantic setting as we explored the area near ponds and conservatory.

Willow trees on Belle Isle Photos
Engagement Photos near Willows on Belle Isle
Detroit Photogrpher Ilze Lucero

Belle Isle is a plentiful photography location, but make sure you get your permit, as park staff will be asking to see it.

After fun on Belle Isle we concluded out engagement photo shoot at the Ouizi floral mural on Agnes Street - another of my faves in Detroit .

Ouizi floral mural Agnes St
Flower Mural in Detroit
Engagement Photo shoot Flower Mural Detroit
Ouizi Flower Mural Detroit

Lovely lakeside wedding at Twin Chimneys

Lucas and Alexa had their lovely lakeside wedding at Twin Chimneys Independence Oaks County park. Having an outside wedding in Michigan can have its risks - from scorching heat to rain, but this day only few drops came down earlier in the day, and the breeze from the lake made for a lovely celebration of love.

Independence Oaks Clarkston Mi Wedding
Twin Chimneys  MI Wedding

The pavilion was decorated with string lights and rustic table center pieces and guests were treated to handmade soaps as favors.


Wedding at Independence Oaks County Park

The couple said their I Dos in front of the gazebo and the park gave great options for romantic wedding photos on the docks of the lake and around the park.

Wedding couple at the Independence Oaks Clarkston Wedding
Clarkston Wedding
Clarkston Wedding at Independence Oaks Twin Chimneys
Clarkston Wedding Photogrpher

And So Cheers to the happy couple. May their life is filled with love and understanding.

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Riga 2018

This one is bit from the heart.

Jana Baznica Riga St Johns Church in Riga Latvia

I spent a few weeks in Riga this July -  I went back to visit family and city where I grew up. This has been a long time since I went for a visit all by myself. just a year ago we went as a family. But this one was different. This was a trip to visit my grandmothers -  both of them still living. It was also a trip to to enjoy the city my way.

Art Noveau Riga Latvia

I am a city girl -  I haven't lived in a big city in over 7 years now, but I miss it. I grew up in Riga, Latvia -  the capital. While my early childhood was spent mostly in Ciekurkalns -  older corner of the city with frequent visits to Mezaparks  - large park and a Zoo near Kisezers Lake, my high-school years  were spent in Imanta - newer apartment area, and frequent trips downtown Riga.

Kisezers and Mezaparks, Riga Latvia

Every time I go back for a visit I fall in love with this beautiful city I used to call home. In everyday life I had walked countless times past stunning buildings and centuries old churches. Now I breath in and take a moment to admire the Art Noveau architecture that flourishes all over town. The cobblestone streets make me think of centuries old tradition that has been preserved.

Latviajs Nacionalais Makslas Muzejs Terase

This trip I also filled with museums and art gallery visits. I went to Latvian National Art Museum and Arsenals ( I haven't been in arsenals since high-school), I went Makslas Telpa and countless souvenir shops and local boutiques that looked like art galleries.

Latvijas Nacionalais Makslas Muzejs
Latvijas Nacionalais Makslas Muzejs
Berlin Bears RIga

And I enjoyed all the moments of city -  filled with life and culture... and also tourists and traffic. I felt like a tourist admiring architecture and meeting friends in cafe's I no monger were familiar with. I was reminded of life with no air conditioning ( and this was unusually hot summer) and no refills, and delicious food, and unique salads.... and amazing deserts. 

Delicious food in Latvia

While I did quite a bit of wondering in the city, this trip was also to spend some very needed time with family. One of my grandmothers is in her nineties and the hardest part is  feeling so helpless  -  being so far away when her health is deteriorating. My other grandmother is in her late eighties and I got to spend a bit more time with her - remembering most of my childhood summers spent in her country home.

This trip was bittersweet. Its this unexplained feeling  when I have built my life so far away. While technology helps bring as closer with Skype calls and photos, the longing of all things familiar, unique cultural habits and people who know you inside and out never really fades.

There is a part of me that feels like a nomad -  unsettled, looking for new  places and enjoying the travel, but there are also deep roots in the place I come from. And this trip was a reminder of how deep they are.

Mezaparks Riga
Livu Laukums Krievu teatris  maza Gilde Riga
Troksnu Iela Riga
Street Musician Riga
Daugava Ikskile

Bridal Photo Session on a Beach

Recently got to photograph with Stephanie on a beach. I love the light reflecting from the sand and how breeze moves the clothing.

    

 

 

We had a gorgeous bouquet. I have to thank Detroit Design Company for sourcing beautiful protea blooms.

Beach wedding Photo Shoot

I love photographing movement. Being on the beach and having a bit of a breeze catch the bridal cape was exactly what I was looking for. While it looks like we were on a quiet beach, people were sunbathing and enjoying the water at the Holly Recreation area. We just played with angles and looked for clearing.

Bridal Cape Photo Shoot

But this beautiful cape stole the show. I'm a big fan of veils in bridal portraits. This flowing cape had the feel of long flowy veil, but held up in the wind ( the veils sometimes pul on the hair a bit too hard)

Prom Photos among flowers

The prom season is upon us. Girls in stunning dresses, beautiful make up and hair, guys in polished suits and tuxes.

This prom photo-shoot was for two exchange students studying in our are schools from Italy and Vietnam.

Prom photos Clarkston MI

It was fun to create some great images to send home to the family as the senior year is wrapping up.

Senior Prom photos

I love photographing these events as they freeze happy moments we will look back at.

High Scchool Senior Photos Clarkston
Guy Senior Prom Photo
Senior Prom Photo Session

Unkrainian wedding Immaculate Conception Church and Cherry Creek Golf Club

Traditional weddings are always interesting to photogrph, as specific wedding traditions get passed down through generations, and sometimes integrated with modern life.

This Ukrainian wedding started with ceremony at the Immaculate Conception Ukrainian Catholic Church in Hamtramack and reception celebration continues at the Cherry Creek Golf Club. We stopped by at the Stoney Creek Metro park for some creative photos as well. When it comes to the weddings with multiple locations, my best advise is to account for the driving times, so they day doesn’t seem rushed.

Ukrainian Wedding Detroit
Ukrainian Wedding Hamtramack
Immaculate Conception Ukrainian Catholic Church Detroit
Detroit Ukrainian Wedding Stoney Creek Metro Park
Cherry Creek Golf Club Ukrainian Wedding
Ukrainian Wedding Detroit Photographer
ukrainian Wedding First Dance Smoke machine
Cherry Creek Golf Club Wedding Peony Flower Bouquet