The Linen Book

In this day and age where cell phones never leave our hands, where images pass our eyes at an almost dizzying rate, where there is at least one screen exploding with imagery in just about every room of the house, it can be easy to forget that photographs are not meant to solely inhabit the virtual world. Just as they always have since the camera was first invented, photographs have the greatest impression when they surround us in the tangible world.

My linen book. Slightly smaller than a full  leather wedding album , parent books are a beautiful way to say thank-you to your parents, whether just for raising you right or for all they did to make your wedding day a beautiful success. 

My linen book. Slightly smaller than a full leather wedding album, parent books are a beautiful way to say thank-you to your parents, whether just for raising you right or for all they did to make your wedding day a beautiful success. 

Linen wedding parent album by New Jersey wedding photographer Nan Doud Photography
Clean wedding album design by Princeton New Jersey wedding photographer Nan Doud Photography

After all, photographs are meant to adhere to our memory receptors, forever binding long term memories of relatively brief moments in our lives, thus anchoring and grounding us. This is why you may hear me repeat the mantra: prints matter.

I design your photo album with both the flow of the day and aesthetics in mind. Simple. Clean. Elegant. I select from the best of your wedding day images, saving you time and allowing you to get your album in your hands quickly for you to enjoy. When doing album design themselves, many couples end up delaying the process for years... even decades.

I design your photo album with both the flow of the day and aesthetics in mind. Simple. Clean. Elegant. I select from the best of your wedding day images, saving you time and allowing you to get your album in your hands quickly for you to enjoy. When doing album design themselves, many couples end up delaying the process for years... even decades.

Understanding the emotional and even psychological impact that the tangible print has on us as we grow up and grow old hopefully gives you a glimpse into why what photographers do is such important work. Yes, it's art. But it's more than art. These are the tangible visual hooks upon which some of our strongest memories, and the memories of those who have gone before us, are hung. You might look at a portrait of your grandma and suddenly you can hear her voice, smell her kitchen and feel the softness of her skin. Or an image may contain within it an entire story that your mom told you over and over whenever you looked at the picture or asked her about it.

Images are phenomenal memory cues! And without us even knowing it, these memories become more deeply imprinted on us when we simply live in the presence of these images that adorn our walls and mantles. They are that powerful.

Luxury wedding albums New Jersey wedding photographer
Good wedding album design doesn't just consist of cramming as many pictures as possible into a finite space. Storyline and design sense, as well as technical understanding of image quality and color play important roles.

Good wedding album design doesn't just consist of cramming as many pictures as possible into a finite space. Storyline and design sense, as well as technical understanding of image quality and color play important roles.

Handmade linen photo album by Nan Doud Photography

So when you get married, it's important to not only have a digital record of the day on a disc or a hard drive somewhere. Your portraits, your album, and even the printed proofs that you can look through with your kids one day... they are important. It makes sense to invest in them. With proper care, they will outlast you and likely even your children so that generations to come will be able to treasure them as much or even more than you do.

Princeton wedding photographer | New Jersey wedding photographer | New Jersey weddings | Elegant weddings | Simply elegant | Hamilton New Jersey wedding | Princeton New Jersey wedding | wedding simplicity | New Jersey Bride | Bridal Style 

Princeton, New Jersey Wedding - Elise & Michael

Every wedding I capture is a unique blend of personalities -- a story that has never been told before. Michael and Elise's wedding was a beautiful day that I was so blessed to be a part of. 

Princeton New Jersey Wedding Photographer bride and groom in woods

I love the story that these two have to share for a couple of reasons. One being that Michael's family were among the first to welcome us to New Jersey when we moved here from the San Francisco Bay Area. Not only did they welcome us, they gave us a home. And Michael, being the gentleman that his mama raised him to be, even gave up his room for my husband and I to use for a while. When we arrived in New Jersey the housing we had lined up fell through. Without Michael's family taking us in, we would have had a pretty miserable start to our life in Jersey. Instead, it is a time in our life that we look back on with nothing but joy for how it all played out. Even when things don't go exactly as planned, they sometimes are just as they are really supposed to be. (Which ought to remind you something of a wedding day!)

Beautiful lace cap sleeves give this wedding gown an almost victorian era feel. Couldn't she be right out of the pages of Pride & Prejudice? 

Beautiful lace cap sleeves give this wedding gown an almost victorian era feel. Couldn't she be right out of the pages of Pride & Prejudice? 

But this wedding day went off without a hitch... with these two lovely people ending up hitched!

I love the classic cut of this wedding gown, paired with the deep V back. So stunning.

I love the classic cut of this wedding gown, paired with the deep V back. So stunning.

New Jersey wedding photographer bridal prep
Natural elegant wedding day make-up

Natural elegant wedding day make-up

Can we talk about Elise's choice for florals? Peonies and Hydrangeas for miles. There can never be enough peonies. Can I get an amen?!

I HEART peonies. 

I HEART peonies. 

I love how Elise's special loved-ones were commemorated in her bouquet design. Such a meaningful little detail.

The vintage styling of the picture pendants attached to this bridal bouquet lent to the understated elegance of the whole day.

The vintage styling of the picture pendants attached to this bridal bouquet lent to the understated elegance of the whole day.

Such a stunningly simple engagement ring design. 

Such a stunningly simple engagement ring design. 

These Michael Kors pink heels were a perfect pop of color when they peeked out from beneath Elise's gorgeous gown. 

These Michael Kors pink heels were a perfect pop of color when they peeked out from beneath Elise's gorgeous gown. 

Michael is a little bit tall and Elise is not. 

Michael is a little bit tall and Elise is not. 

Clearly she needed more than just a pair of pretty heels for a boost though! Hee hee!

Sometimes you just need a little more height than heels can afford!

Sometimes you just need a little more height than heels can afford!

New Jersey Wedding Photography father and bride in Stonehill Church in Princeton New Jersey

The rest of the day was packed full of all of the special, unplanned emotional moments that weddings are bound to bring about. 

New Jersey wedding photographer Nan Doud Photography Mother of bride and bride

Capturing these moments is one of my favorite parts of wedding photography. 

Princeton New Jersey wedding photographer Groom Prep
Groom and groomsmen image Nan Doud Photography New Jersey wedding photographer
We couldn't have had more beautiful weather for this Princeton, New Jersey wedding.

We couldn't have had more beautiful weather for this Princeton, New Jersey wedding.

Bridal Party Portraits Princeton wedding photographer in New Jersey
Bridal portraits New Jersey Wedding photographer
Princeton New Jersey Wedding photographer Bridal Party
New Jersey wedding photographer bridal party
The blind "first look". The bride and groom don't actually see each other but they have a quiet moment to exchange a note or pray together or just hold hands for a moment before it all begins.

The blind "first look". The bride and groom don't actually see each other but they have a quiet moment to exchange a note or pray together or just hold hands for a moment before it all begins.

New Jersey Wedding Photographer wedding ceremony
New Jersey Wedding Photographer Church ceremony
Princeton New Jersey wedding photographer just married
New Jersey Wedding Photographer Summer Wedding

I seriously could not get enough of these two....

New Jersey wedding photographer Veteran's Park Hamilton New Jersey Bride and Groom

And they obviously couldn't get enough of each other!

Princeton New Jersey wedding photographer in Hamilton Square New Jersey Bride and groom portraits

That moment when you just got married and you are struck with, "How did this all happen? We are married?! Holy cow... we are married!!"

New Jersey classic wedding photography Nan Doud Photography
New Jersey Wedding photographer photojournalistic black and white bride and groom
I think the wedding cake topper sums it up nicely. 

I think the wedding cake topper sums it up nicely. 

Princeton wedding photographer | New Jersey wedding photographer | New Jersey weddings | Elegant weddings | Simply elegant | Hamilton New Jersey wedding | Princeton New Jersey wedding | wedding simplicity | New Jersey Bride | Bridal Style 

A Winter Wedding at Maritime Parc in Jersey City, New Jersey

As always, I had such a great time helping my friend, Jacqueline Patton Photography, capture this New Jersey Wedding at Maritime Parc in Jersey City.

No question about it, this day was chilly! But it was a gorgeous NYC winter wedding day. Crystal blue skies, a sparkling skyline and a semi-frozen Hudson River all combined to make for a great day for a (you guessed it) white wedding! (Thank you, Billy Idol. May your upper lip remain forever curled. Rock on.)

Despite the chill in the air, Lady Liberty set the example and toughed out the weather so Jacqueline and I followed her lead and rocked this Maritime Parc winter wedding at Liberty State Park. 

And honestly, there was enough love and gorgeous details at this event to warm the cockles of any photographer's heart.

And of course there was the gorgeous bride. 

I've gotta say, one of the things I love about the Maritime Parc wedding venue in Jersey City is the copious amount of white walls. It's like being surrounded by 100 soft white light reflectors. 

I would also be remiss if I didn't mention how gorgeous the spiral staircase at Maritime Parc is. 

New Jersey Wedding Photographer Nan Doud Photography | Maritime Parc Wedding Photography | shot for Jacqueline Patton Photography

So, I may have mentioned that it was a little cold out. In fact, I think it may have been one of the coldest days all winter. But this bride was not going to let the cold put a chill on her beautiful day! She braved it like no California bride I've ever photographed! Typically 50° is the point at which they declare that they have had enough and it's time to go in (I relate, girls! I'm a California girl myself!) Not this bride. At somewhere in the neighborhood of -25° she was out there smiling and just enjoying her day! She may have had no feeling left in her extremities but that didn't stop her from looking spectacular, did it? 

Speaking of spectacular... not a bad backdrop for a NYC wedding first look, right? 

I. Love. Her. Shoes. The End.

Did you ever see Father of the Bride? Remember Hank's assistant, Howard Weinstein (who ironically is the cousin of a childhood friend of mine in real life)? His line, "All I can say is, thank God snow is white! It works. You know what I mean?" Having shot most of my weddings up until this past year in the San Francisco Bay Area, I had never put that line to the test until now, but Howard was right!

This one right down here? Favorite photo from the whole day.

A Truly Elegant New York City Wedding at Guastavino's

Elegant NYC Wedding at Guastavino's

I had the immense pleasure and distinct privilege of helping my friend, Jacqui of Jacqueline Patton Photography, capture this amazingly beautiful New York City wedding, recently featured on Love My Dress, back in December. With Guastavino's as the wedding and reception venue, exquisite floral arrangements by Blade Floral Design of NYC, gowns and bridal accessories by Tara Keely, Monique Lhuillier and Reem Acra, you just can't get more elegant. The bride and groom not only both had impeccable style, they were just genuinely lovely people to work with. Photographers really can't dream of anything better.

Princeton New Jersey Wedding Photographer Nan Doud Photography | NYC | wedding at Gustavino's - shot for Jacqueline Patton Photography

As Jacqueline's second shooter, I spent the first portion of the day as usual, with the groom and groomsmen, which is almost always a fun experience! These guys were great. My husband, who came along to help Jacqui and I carry all our gear, helped out immensely by being the chief bow-tie tutor (having only recently mastered the art himself!) And he was a little insta-star-struck when he saw that the groom and groomsmen bow ties were made by someone that he follows on Instagram, The Cordial Churchman.

The Bentley Hotel NYC is where we started out. It's a beautiful hotel and super close to the couple's wedding venue, Guastavino's. My photographer's eye was pleased by the symmetry in the lobby. 

I decided that the opportunity for some great bridal party shots under the Queensborough Bridge were worth braving the weather. And boy... was I ever right. I do love it when I'm right like this! Can I just say that I think Alanis Morissette was a little overly-dramatic about rain on your wedding day? Rain on your wedding day can be magical.

I gotta tell you... I've shot a lot of weddings. Over 100 in the past four years. But this moment? For some reason it was one of the more exhilarating. As I perched on the curb, feeling the fevered breath of the traffic behind me (and praying I wouldn't suddenly be splashed by a passing cab),  my husband holding an umbrella over my head as I raised my voice over the rain and the city, I couldn't believe that this was me. Here I was, working a wedding in NYC when just a year before I was living in Sunny California. 

My excitement over the perfection of the light in this little dry patch of the city that I was owning right then also had me just a little happy. Photographers normally squeal or gasp or freak out when the light loves on us like this. So I was feeling kind of on top of the world. And drippy wet. 

Guastavino's is an incredibly gorgeous venue. I can't wait to shoot there again!

The bride and groom decided to do a first look before their wedding ceremony. Always a wise decision!

So, speaking of photographers freaking out, gasping, dying a thousand deaths and telling you how much they love you for being willing to brave the rain....

So many beautiful details at this wedding!

The band from Hank Lane Music was unbeatable.

Nothing like the first dance!

I've had the honor of shooting a number of Jewish weddings now and I love so many parts of the day. But my favorite part might just be the Hora dance. So. Much. Fun.

Seriously! Cuteness overload!

Blade Floral Designs | Joseph Gann Jewelers, Boston | Gloss and Glam  |  Esprit Events |  Minted | Cathy’s Custom Prints  | 

thank you, Jacqueline Patton Photography for having me along to help out!