Museum of Arts and Science Daytona Wedding - Tori & Ben

We’ve mentioned Ben and Tori before here, and how much fun they are to work with. Through their engagement session with us, Ben and Tori got to know how Amanda and I work together, and they gave us full freedom to capture their day. This allowed Ben and Tori to relax and enjoy their big day knowing that we would be capturing every moment for them to remember for years down the line.

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Ben and Tori did a first look. While Ben waited outside with a letter for his bride to be, Tori came around the corner with the biggest smile on her face and a beautiful crown of greenery encircling her head. Once Ben felt her hand on his shoulder, he turned and laid his eyes on his bride for the first time that day. It was a beautiful moment they shared. They each had written a note to the other and traded messages. Each was brought to tears, and the love they had was beautiful to see. Needless to say, moments like these are why we love first looks and encourage them.

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The ceremony and reception was held at the Cici and Hyatt Brown Museum of Art. This is one of the exhibition halls at the Museum of Arts and Science (MOAS) at Daytona Beach. It is a beautiful venue filled with amazing artwork showcasing much of Florida and its old history. During the ceremony, Ben and Tori were on the landing of the grand staircase, and before them were their closest friends and family surrounded by this beautiful artwork. All the greenery in Tori’s bouquet and those of the bridesmaids was perfectly accented by the greenery showcased in the old Florida artwork

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Between the ceremony and reception, we had the opportunity to take some more pictures; only this time inside the museum with the new Mr. and Mrs. We scouted some of Ben and Tori’s favorite pieces and took some pictures highlighting both the wonderful location they chose to be married in and the unique backdrop it made for their wedding pictures. Ben is a lot like me. He is a lot of fun and has a goofy side to him. Something about the setting and one of the pictures really made him think of the artpiece American Gothic, so he wanted to take a picture with him and Tori posing as the American Gothic couple. Tori is always up for anything, so she jumped right on the idea and we all had a lot of laughs as they were creating their own “Florida Gothic”.

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The reception was held in the front room of the museum. Ben and Tori were seated with their wedding party at the head table, and behind them was a long painting spanning the entire length of the wall with images of classic, old Florida. Their family and friends were then seated throughout the room and flanked by more artwork. Their reception was an intimate setting with Ben and Tori making their way around to each table thanking them for joining them on their wedding day. Many of the guests were taking pictures on a Instax camera and posting them to a pin board that had been provided to them with messages of congratulation and thanks.

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At the end of the day Ben and Tori made their grand exit flanked by loved ones all throwing lavender and celebrating the joyous and shining couple. Ben and Tori, thank you for letting us capture your big day. Amanda and I were honored to be there and can’t help but smile as we think back to your perfect day.

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Downtown Orlando Engagement Session - Victoria & Santos

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Church Street in Downtown Orlando is beautiful, but we always find that it is just a little more perfect when your arms are around the one you love. Last Sunday, we were lucky enough to  spend the evening with Victoria and Santos exploring Church Street and around Lake Eola for their engagement photos. We first met Victoria at the Florida Wedding Expo show we did back in January. We immediately hit it off, and we loved hearing about her plans to be married at Disney! We scheduled a consultation meeting with her and Santos so we could get to know them both a little better and learn some more about their wedding plans.

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While getting to know Victoria and Santos more and learning about their wedding, we couldn’t help but love their vision. They are getting married at one of our favorite Disney Resorts, Port Orleans Riverside, and holding their reception at the Atlantic Dance Hall. Victoria and Santos want their wedding to have a unique feel that isn’t overly Florida, and they wanted their engagement session to have a similar feel. We opted to go with Downtown Orlando where they is more of a cool urban feel.

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Victoria and Santos brought along some books as props that help tell a bit about themselves and their relationship. When they pulled out a baking book and a Dungeons & Dragons book, we knew we were going to be great friends. Amanda and I are self proclaimed geeks, and Victoria’s baking book was right up Amanda’s alley while Santos’ D&D book was right up mine! We are always excited to capture a couple’s engagement photos, but we were beyond excited to find out we had so many things in common with Victoria and Santos!

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Once we finished around Church Street, we made a short walk down to Lake Eola, where we were able to capture some gorgeous shots around the iconic Orlando landmark. We love how Victoria and Santos’ engagement photos turned out, and we hope you feel the same way!

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Downtown Leesburg Engagement Session - Emily & Ari

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Amanda and I had an awesome engagement session out in Leesburg. We had never visited Leesburg before, but it is filled with so much beauty that Amanda and I had to stick around after the engagement session ended to snap some more pictures of the area. Leesburg may be a small town, but it is filled with a quaint feeling that you miss out on in larger cities like Orlando. After spending the evening in Leesburg we definitely know how Emily and Ari can fall in love in such a picturesque town.

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We met Emily and Ari near Beacon College where they are students and where they first met. Beacon College is located near the Leesburg City Hall, where Amanda and I had scouted out a fountain before the session, so we started heading that way. While on our way there, Emily told us that is where she and Ari actually had their first date. We loved that we stumbled upon a spot so special to them, so we spent a significant amount of time near that fountain and City Hall capturing their engagement photos.

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We then had to go down towards Beacon College so we could get a few pictures of where it all began! The Beacon College campus is filled with beautiful spots, and on the way there, we passed an awesome hedge wall that covered the entire side of a building, leaving a space for a mural that was painted on it. That is where we had to have a ring shot! Ari chose a purple Amethyst stone for Emily’s engagement ring, and WOW is it stunning! It brings a great pop of color, and we just had to borrow it off of Emily’s finger to do a ring shot with.

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Emily and Ari will be graduating in just a few months, and then will be focusing on wedding planning. It was so fun getting to know these two, and we are incredibly excited for their big achievements in graduating and then marriage! Congratulations Emily and Ari!

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Rollins College Engagement Session - Nina & Steven

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We met Nina at the Florida Wedding Expo, and we had the opportunity to meet her Fiance, Steven, during their engagement session. Nina chose Rollins College to serve as the backdrop to her and Steven’s romantic evening of photos.

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One of our favorite things about engagement sessions is that we really get to know the couple. We love to laugh and laughing with our couples when they are being ridiculously cute because it is so much fun. Celebrating love is definitely a joy of ours, and we were all laughing together that day. It was a beautiful evening, and despite it being a little hot, Steven and Nina were great sports and were just giggling all day. We’re pretty sure Steven was just pretend giggling, but that didn’t matter as it got not only Nina, but Amanda and myself, laughing too!

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When determining where to have their engagement session, Nina asked us if we had any recommendations and told us some of the scenery she most preferred. Nina chose Rollins College for its beautiful architecture combined with the natural old growth trees and landscape. During their engagement session, we discovered that Nina and Steven had only just recently moved to Central Florida from up north, so it was great that we were able to help them find just the right Florida look for their engagement session.

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Nina and Steven are still early in their planning process. They have some of the biggest hurdles out of the way though, like wedding venue and date. We are so excited to see how their big day will turn out, but one thing is for sure, it will be the perfect day for them. We know it will be absolutely gorgeous, filled with love and joy, and we are so excited for them!

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Instax 365 Challenge Week 8

Not too much was happening this week. It mostly consisted of editing and following up with leads from the past week’s wedding show. This week was also featured another panic moment when I woke up one morning and realized I forgot to post the previous day’s picture. I usually take the picture whenever inspiration strikes, and then in the evening when I’m home and have the ability to write out the date and day on the photo, I do that and then upload it. Well, for Day 53, I had to post it on Day 54 because, as you’ll see, I was a bit distracted.

Day 50 (2/19/19)

Instax 365 Challenge

I’m really loving just how well the Instax Neo 90 Classic captures shadows, and especially nature shots. As I’ve said in the past, I do think that the macro and focus leave a little to be desired, but overall I think the camera does perform solidly for what it is. The color on this plant is unique and reminds me of the photo from Day 6 despite it being a different plant altogether.

Day 51 (2/20/19)

Instax 365 Challenge

This little decoration lives in my mother-in-law’s house. I was having a pretty good day overall, and his jolly, little face made me smile. He looks proud of his job, and now that I’ve seen that proud smile, I can’t interpret it as any other kind. I think I can see why my mother-in-law keeps him around.

Day 52 (2/21/19)

Instax 365 Challenge

I was waiting for Amanda to get in the car when I looked at the steering wheel and thought this might make a good photo. Like I said above, the Instax Neo 90 Classic can leave some things to be desired, and in this case it is the overly powerful flash. There is a button to lighten/darken an image, but it is really hard to tell how a photo will turn out until you snap the picture. Once you’ve done that you can then adjust accordingly, but that isn’t in line with my 365 Challenge here. I’m going to have to dedicate a week to trying out each setting and seeing how that goes.

Day 53 (2/22/19)

Instax 365 Challenge

Ahhhh, the picture that was forgotten. I took this picture and then I decided to jump right back into my childhood and play these games. I stayed up way too late and totally forgot about posting the picture. I woke up on the 23rd and instantly realized my mistake. Curse you nostalgia!

Day 54 (2/23/19)

Instax 365 Challenge

We received our new business cards this day and they had to be delivered into the package box instead of the regular mailbox. I wanted to see how the image would look if I allowed the camera to flash with all the (what I think is probably) aluminum walls. I was surprised the light didn’t bounce as badly as I expected, and ultimately I like the shot. As I joked in my captions and hashtags for the picture, it looks like the inside of a safe to me.

Day 55 (2/24/19)

Instax 365 Challenge

Amanda and I spent the majority of our day in Tampa. We turned it into kind of a date day as we were really there for business adjacent things, but then extended it out to include and nice lunch and chat over boba tea. Tampa has one of my top 2 favorite tea shops, and I look for any and every excuse to go visit and take Amanda. Anyways, back to the picture of the Ramada Inn. Our business adjacent business brought us here for a presentation to see if we could better our services. I am a little surprised at how dark the image came out though because this picture was taken at noon on a very bright day.

Day 56 (2/25/19)

Instax 365 Challenge

Remember earlier when I said the Instax Neo 90 Classic does a great job at catching nature well? Well, here is another example. The colors have a great contrast to them and shadows are nice and deep. Originally, I wanted to take a picture of just the broken branch and preferably looking down straight on it, but… I was too short. I changed up my angle and despite it not being what I originally envisioned, I’m happy that we get to see a little bit of the sky popping through.

Favorite photo of the week:

Day 54. There is something about how simple this photo is that I really like. It isn’t busy, it isn’t overly fancy. It just look really simple and clean. And, in honor of the simplicity of that photo, I’m gonna leave this area really simple too by leaving my justification at that.

Make sure to check in on my Instagram (@miguel.mejias.florabloom)  to see more of the Instax 365 Challenge as I upload a each day’s photo. If you want to see more of our images, check out Amanda’s Instagram (@florabloomphotography), and if you’d like to reach out to us, be sure to do so here!