Kids and Families, Special Events

Renewing Vows: Nick + Amy

Weddings are beautiful—but marriage isn’t always so Pinterest-perfect. I have always wanted to take some very realistic shots of marriage, 10 years later, when everyone’s completely settled into a whole different life with kids, mortgages, financial obligations, career changes, messy houses, the mundaneness of the day-to-day. But 10 years is an excellent marker to step back, examine the original wedding vows, and see if they need some refinement or fit into your current life.

I had the opportunity to capture some wedding vow renewals of Nick and Amy—two people I’ve known them since they passed their five year anniversary, and now they’ve just surpassed 10 years. They decided to officially renew their vows and added a couple with their daughters. They chose a secluded woodsy spot on a beautiful fall day in Rock Creek Park, complete with a picnic and twirly dresses for the girls. As Amy put it, it was a second chance to do the wedding the way you really wanted to the first time around. Here are some shots from this lovely morning.

Special Events

Married: Erin and Dan!


Erin and Dan were married on a chilly December day right in the middle of the holiday season, and what a joyful holiday it was! Erin, who apparently once declared she would never get married, did so at the Bier Baron in Washington, D.C. where she met Dan a year ago. To bring it full-circle, they invited a small group of friends and families to share a beer and watch them say their vows. Afterwards, more guests joined them at Dan’s childhood home in Derwood, Md. outside the Beltway, for a most excellent reception of oysters, Texas beef brisket, smoked salmon, vegan and non-vegan cake, dancing to Gangnam Style (and other songs) in the decked-out garage, and cigars on the back porch.

Since Dan’s mother, Calli, is actually a good friend of mine from work, I’ve witnessed (or heard many details of) the relationship and wedding planning since day one. It’s been super fun leaning over Calli’s shoulder at her computer screen as she picked out tealights, gift bags, flowers and talked about clearing out the garage for a dance floor and the food selection with the caterer. I had a great time being a part of the wedding celebration as photographer. Enjoy!

MS003 MS002 MS025 MS028 MS036 MS043 MS071 MSR108 MSR118 MSR125 MSR142 MSR144 MSR150 MSR166 MSR174 MSR186 MSR195 MSR204 MSR215 MSR260 MSR264 MSR280 MSR285




Dan Erin Bier Baron

A girl and a boy met in a bar… and then a year later, they were married at the bar.

Special Events

A snapshot: Erin and Dan!

Special Events

Married: Sean and Anna!

Anna Sean ceremony

Anna and Sean, October 7, 2012 in Brooklyn, New York

My little cousin Sean, who is short, voluntarily bald, and a former rock star (literally, until he got married) found himself a tall, blond, Swedish model named Anna. They met working at the offices of an African-American matchmaking website. It’s either the beginning of a really great joke (a short Chinese dude and a tall blond Swedish model walked into a bar…) or a really great relationship, the latter being the truth. The two could not be better paired together. I had the grand honor of being the ceremony pianist, not the photographer, but in between songs I got to sneak in a few pictures as they vowed to take care of each other, and to help him get things off high shelves in the kitchen. Here are some shots from this hip Brooklyn wedding at MyMoon Restaurant on a rainy October day, combining Anna’s graphic designer touches, candlelit tables named after significant neighborhoods, a first dance to Gangnam Style, and more.



anna sean ceremonyhan-hiort familyhan-hiort candidtwanmohtwanmoh2candlespark sloperestaurantfirst dancegangnam style

Special Events

Married: Leon and MJ!

Okay, so I’ve been seriously delinquent about updating my blog… but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been out and about with my camera. I wasn’t about to miss out on the wedding of my favorite cousin Leon and the girl who would put up with him for the rest of her life, M.J., out in glorious Santa Barbara this April. They had a beachy wedding followed by a low-key, well-organized reception at the Cabrillo Pavilion Arts Center that included a first dance choreographed by M.J., a chocolate fountain, friends who emcee’d, and later in the night, In ‘N Out burgers catered in for the hungry crowd. Clearly, a good time was had by all, and I’m happy to share it six months later as a sweet reminder of the event. Happy marriage, you two!

Special Events

Yifty’s and Janice’s wedding!

Whether the weather be mild or whether the weather be not

 It was only 100 degrees outside on the day of Janice’s and Yiftach’s wedding day, but what a wedding! With views of lower Manhattan across the Hudson River, Yifty and Janice were married by cousin Seth, an official rabbi, at the Liberty House in Jersey City. There were lots of tears and smiles, including a very sweet moment when Yifty hugged his dad so hard before leaving his parents back and stepping forward under the chuppah (such symbolism!). I believe the chuppah was hand-painted by his mother, Rebecca, as well.

There was dinner and dancing as the sun set over New York Harbor, the necessary Hava Nagila in which the bride and groom are tossed up and down in chairs while they hold on for dear life. There were many Jewish customs not always seen at other Jewish weddings, including one in which the guests congratulate Yifty’s parents for having finally sent off their last child into marriage and emptied the nest, once and for all. Congrats Yifty and Janice, and to David and Rebecca for marrying off their last!

Special Events

Janice and Yifty at the Auf Ruf

What is an Auf Ruf? Well, according to Wikipedia and the program notes at Janice’s and Yifty’s own auf ruf, the Jewish groom is called upon to a recitation of a blessing over the Torah, then everyone sings a congratulatory song, and then people throw candy at the groom to guarantee a sweet marriage.

In less conservative ceremonies, as was this one, the groom and bride were called up together, and each of the family members read a section of the Torah before it made its way around the congregation seated outside the Old Wharf House in Oceanport, NJ on Saturday evening. Everyone then pelted the couple with saltwater taffy and some kind of wrapped gummy candy before retiring inside for the rehearsal dinner. This, after the fire alarm went off several times, as if calling the local fire department to the Torah as well. Or else a love spark creating a four-alarm fire by Yifty and Janice. Mazel Tov, you two!


“Then you came and caused a spark/ That’s a four alarm fire now”

Special Events

Zipporah and Jeff: married!

Let them eat cake!

Zipporah and Jeff were married last Sunday on a gloriously sunny day at the South Shore Cultural Center in Chicago, despite tornado threats dangling overhead from the night before. The South Shore Cultural Center – where I do believe President and First Lady Obama were married – was an amazing lakefront site with windows galore and old-style architecture. It felt like you were outside even though you were safely enclosed inside.

To say that Zipporah and Jeff are *obsessed* with Illini basketball is an understatement (Illini = University of Illinois at Champaign/ Urbana, for those of you not versed in college athletics). It does explain the many accents of orange throughout the wedding. However, the orange was also a nice, happy, dressy color complimented with greens in the flowers and tablecloths and bridesmaids’ dresses that made for a perfectly beautiful spring-summer wedding. It’s all very appropriate, considering the two met on an Illini basketball forum – online, that is – before they both moved to Chicago, became basketball-watching buddies at local bars, and the rest is history.

I was happy to spend some time with the bride as she was all made-up and her hair done in curls, and I even had a key role in the wedding as the ceremony pianist. For that reason it was difficult to shoot pictures and play the piano simultaneously, but I was able to get many shots of the happy couple afterwards. And look at the huge smile on Zipporah’s face – in every picture! – you can tell the months and months of hard work and planning paid off. Congrats Zip and Jeff!


I just love this photo of Zip passing the torch – er – bouquet – to the next bride-to-be.