I’ve had the HARDEST time writing this introduction. I’ve typed notes and paragraphs and still don’t know how to find the words to express what an honor and a JOY it was to document these two, their love and this celebration! Because of that, I’m so thankful that I’m a wedding photographer and I know that all of y’all are really here to see Anna & Darian’s beautiful wedding images.
I’m going to try my best to keep this short & get to the pretty stuff as soon as possible, so before you scroll any further… if you want a little bit of background on how I know Anna & Darian and why photographing their day was so special, click here for part one of their engagement session!
Savannah of Savannah Smith Photography and I CO-SHOT this wedding day together! We have been looking forward to photographing Anna and Darian’s wedding day together for well over a year now, and now that it’s come and gone, I wish we could do it all over again! As you probably know, Savannah and I often spend weekends trading off second shooting duties for each other, but for two of our dearest friends, we both shared the responsibility of playing lead photographer. And then… about halfway through their reception, we put our camera gear aside, grabbed a drink and turned into wedding guests! It was so special to spend the rest of the evening dancing and celebrating with Anna, Darian, and so many Penn State friends that I haven’t seen in a long time.
I’m not going to lie, I was pretty nervous for Anna & Darian’s wedding day! I love each and every one of my clients, and there is a lot of pressure to do a great job for all of my CKP Couples. BUT, when you have been friends with your clients for years and have photographed both of them many times throughout that time, that pressure feels just a little greater (mostly because you are so emotional about all of the things!). I knew that I would be shooting through misty eyes for A LOT of the day… there’s something so incredibly special about seeing two dear friends SO happy as they say their vows, and I was very glad to have an excuse to squish my camera up to my face to hide my happy tears!
From the moment we arrived and were greeted by happy tears and hugs from Anna’s mom to when we circled up for the final song at the end of the night… the Penn State Alma Mater led by Darian… Savannah and I weren’t just treated like friends turned photographers… we were treated like family, and truly, that meant so much.
Anna and Darian have been dreaming about and planning this day for a long time, and while I really do think they knocked the design of the day out of the park (everything was just STUNNING… I mean just wait until you see it all come together!), what was even more special was the warmth and love of everyone that was present. Their day wasn’t just a wedding… it was a huge celebration of these two, the adventures they’ve taken together and the life they’re building together with their sweet pups. There was so much JOY to be shared and celebrated as these two became husband and wife!
I just loved seeing how seamlessly and beautifully these two involved so many things that mean so much to them into their wedding day, most notably, their boys Buddy and Baby (AKA their rescue corgi & chihuahua) and all things Penn State & Penn State football. I truly don’t think it would have been Anna & Darian’s wedding without pups in bowties, tailgate games outside at their reception or Yuengling at the bar. It truly was the absolute perfect way to celebrate these two, and I still can’t even put into words how happy I am for Anna & Darian!
Capturing the legacies of the wedding days of my close friends is something that, years ago, I never thought I would ever have the opportunity to do, and oh my goodness, this entire process has just meant so much.
Anna & Darian… Savannah and I love y’all so much, and it is so amazing to see you two so happy together. I can’t even begin to explain how much it means that you chose Savannah and I to capture this part of your story. We hope that you’re still flipping through your images 50 years from now, remembering the evening that somehow topped the day Penn State went to (And WON) the Big Ten Championship in 2016. We love you so much and cannot wait to see where a lifetime of tailgates, puppy snuggles & corgi rescue missions takes you.
While these two are off enjoying GREECE, you get a sneak peek into their day! Get ready to scroll & scroll as you enjoy many of my favorite images from Anna + Darian’s wedding day and then…
Be sure to check out Savannah’s gorgeous blog post from Anna & Darian’s day too!! (Yes… you get TWO blog posts to scroll through today!!!)
Pro tip: Ask your florist if they could include a few of the clippings from your bouquet assembly with your delivery! Oftentimes, these buds and blooms just get tossed… when we can really use them for something pretty like this 😍 Ranunculus are my favorite!! SOO excited to get this girl married!!! Time for the sweetest first look with Anna’s girls… If you know Darian, you know that there were no other socks that would have been appropriate to wear on his wedding day! Darian’s mom had the sweetest reaction to his gift for her! Such a fun group of guys! everyone deserves flowers knocked the floral design OUT of the park! Ceremony time! The sweetest reactions from Anna & Darian’s moms… I don’t think there was a dry eye as the ceremony began! Of course, the boys, Baby & Buddy had to make an appearance at their ceremony… they did SO well and didn’t want to leave after their walk down the aisle! Some couples have sand ceremonies, others light unity candles, some tie knots… these two made an Arnold Palmer, and it could not have been more perfect! MARRIED!! This crew was so much fun all day long! I LOVED the girls’ mixed bridesmaids dresses! AHH these bouquets!!! Gorgeous, ladies! One of my favorites of Anna! Are Baby & Buddy’s bowties not the cutest things you’ve ever seen?! Y’all know how much I love twirling shots! Time for the party! Anna spent so long planning the design of their reception space, and it came together SO beautifully! The florals on their cake… talk about GORGEOUS Cookies from friends and family & Lancaster Cupcake to complete the dessert bar! Darian & his mom’s first dance was the best! They grabbed beers and danced away to Margaritaville! Two words: Sunset. Portraits. (They’re ALWAYS worth it, y’all!) That LIGHT! I just love these two! “Let’s do our kiss with our teeth!!”- Peter (CKP Couples are my favorite!!! Remember these cuties?! I love running into CKP Couples at weddings!) Sweet friends! I don’t think I need to tell y’all how much I LOVE photographing Penn State weddings! Check out how many Penn Staters were at Anna & Darian’s reception… we knew we were in for a fun night! Penn Staters sure know how to party! Such a fun crew! Honored & so incredibly grateful (and so incredibly sweaty🙈). Love these humans to pieces!
Thank you to the incredibly hard-working and amazing vendors who joined Savannah Smith Photography & me in making Anna & Darian’s day so magical:
Photography: Savannah Smith Photography & Cait Kramer Photography | Ceremony and Reception Venue: Historic Acres of Hershey | Coordination, Floral Design & Rentals: everyone deserves flowers | Bridal Gown Salon: Rosalin’s Bridal Boutique | Bridal Gown Designer: Allure Bridals Romance Collection | Bridal Shoes: Nordstrom | Bridesmaid’s Dresses: Azazie, David’s Bridal + ASOS | Groom’s Attire: Calvin Klein from Men’s Wearhouse | Groomsmen’s Attire: Perry Ellis from Men’s Wearhouse | Paper Goods: Minted | Hair and Makeup: Anthology Salon & Style Bar | Catering: Sir D’s Catering | Cake and Desserts: Lancaster Cupcake | Pet Care: Furever & Fur Always | DJ and Reception Entertainment: Adam of Soundfactor Entertainment | Celebrant: Charlie Budney | Cookie Table: Friends and family of the couple | Photographer’s Assistant: Megan M. Egan
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