This Sea Island Elopement is the perfect mix of island breeziness and timeless touches. Christie and Ryan chose to elope and had the wedding day of their dreams, and I had the joy of following along to capture every moment of it!
Christie had reached out to me in the fall of 2021 and as soon as we started talking, it felt like talking to a friend I had known my whole life! These two truly are the sweetest people and so easy to talk to and photograph. They had dated for years following each other all over the country for school and work before deciding to settle down in Atlanta.
When we started working together, Christie had plans for a traditional wedding but the conversations started changing and wedding plans started shifting. They decided they wanted to elope at one of their favorite destinations so that they could visit the area and take their future children there to show where they got married! Which is literally the sweetest idea.
Their wedding day was like a tropical dream. The Cloister at Sea Island absolutely caters to the airy island feel mixed with timeless touches that I know Christie was going for on her wedding day. The architecture makes you feel like you are in another country! Their whole day, from the food, flowers, details, and of course the couple, was beautiful.
Christie and Ryan got ready separately so that they could have a true traditional ceremony. She was so excited to surprise him with her whole bridal look! While she got her makeup done, I got to work photographing both of their details, including their hand written vows.
I love finding unique spots during each wedding to get photographs of the bride’s dress. For Christie’s dress I took it outside and hung it on the balcony of the cloister and just loved how it turned out! Capturing detail photographs for my couples is one of my favorite ways to start the day. You put so much thought and effort into these little details that they deserve to be commemorated in your wedding gallery!
Once Christie was ready, it was time to head to the ceremony spot! The beauty of Sea Island is that there were gorgeous backdrops all around us. Christie and I stopped at various spots on the way to the ceremony for some of her bridal portraits. I especially loved the mural we took photos in front of. It just tied in the whimsical island feels that I knew I wanted to include for them!
Their ceremony took place outside of the chapel and it was just Christie, Ryan, the pastor, musicians, and myself. Ryan waited and watched as Christie walked herself down the beautiful walkway from the Cloister. She walked down the aisle as a violinist played music for them. The trees and landscape made for almost fairy-tale-like photos!
They read each other their vows, shared their first kiss as husband and wife, and walked down the aisle all smiles! After they said “I Do” it was time for their photos together. One of the benefits of an elopement, is you can truly focus on what is most important to you. And if that is portraits, then an elopement may just be for you. Christie and Ryan were able to take their time taking photos all across the venue. I brought them under the gorgeous trees that Christie had walked through during the ceremony, we headed back inside to the mural and let them be the main focus across all of the architecture that we photographed them in front of.
After their initial portraits, we made our way to their honeymoon suite for a private cocktail hour on the balcony. Gorgeous plated appetizers and champagne was waiting for them! They went out on the balcony that overlooked the water to enjoy the view and share their private first dance. Afterwards we took more time with just the two of them to finish with their portraits around the rest of the venue before they finished with their private meal. I loved that I was able to witness these two sweet people enter their marriage and do it on their terms!
I believe there is a wedding out there for each couple and you should have the wedding of YOUR dreams. Whether that is a large traditional wedding or a small intimate elopement. I absolutely love capturing your day exactly as YOU imagined it. Congratulations Christie and Ryan! It was a magical day that I adored photographing.
You can see more of their wedding day here.
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