Kate + Tom | part one

I met Kate and her bridal party mid-morning at The Kimpton-Gray Hotel in downtown Chicago. As Kate and her maid of honor, Candy, sifted through songs for the final wedding playlist, I took my time photographing the gorgeous champagne bridal gown that we hung near the window with the backdrop of a wall of buildings beyond. When Kate was zipped into her dress, she transformed into something I can only describe as a figure in an Italian Renaissance painting merged with a Greek goddess. 

We made our way to the roof of the hotel and snuck into the empty rooftop bar. The atrium was light-filled and lush greenery draped down over the sitting area. We shot the bridals, bridesmaid photos and a few with Kate and her mom and aunt. We then split off, the bridal party took one car and Kate, her mom, aunt and I jumped in a Lyft. Kate was in the back seat and I stole a few images of her eagerly waiting to see Tom. We arrived to Logan Square, the destination of the first look. Kate made her way over to her dad for their own first look. It was a beautiful moment. 

Kate made her way across the square and stood on the opposite side of the monument from Tom unable to see each other, then Tom closed his eyes and was led to the monument's center. When he saw her and she saw him seeing her, I felt like I witnessed time stop- they were in their own perfect place in each other's presence and literally nothing else mattered. They were so taken with one another and it was insanely intimate and magical. 

We then made our way to OSB at L&E where Kate proposed to Tom. They shared a shot with their friends and we were off once more, only stopping on the corner to wait for her uncle to pick us up to head downtown for a few more photos before the ceremony. 

We arrived downtown and made our way to a bridge and captured some gorgeous skyline photos and then were immediately off. We arrived at Low-Res Studio in West Town, a trendy art gallery that also functions as a reception and ceremony site. It was quite possibly the most hip building I've personally ever stepped foot in and full of quirks and charm. 

The tables were adorned with loose figs, foliage and other fruits, art deco style table numbers and custom name cards for every seat. I took the opportunity to do their ring shots at this time using their beloved vintage Rolliflex camera. 

The ceremony was intimate and ended with all attendees singing a song about friendship. The cocktail hour and reception featured many traditional foods from Tom's culture which was so cool. They also incorporated a traditional visitation called baiju visits in which the couple visits every table with millet liquor and takes a shot with their guests. 

This wedding was memorable in countless ways but the most memorable aspect of it to me was just how in love this couple is. I wish them every happiness in all adventures where ever life takes them.