Heartfelt Fall Wedding in Fort Collins

Romantic and Heartfelt Wedding in Fort Collins, Colorado

Fort Collins fall wedding

Every detail of this wedding wasn’t just carefully thought out. It was thought of from the heart. Everything had its purpose and its meaning to Aaron + Melissa.

I was lucky enough to work with the rockstar wedding photographer Felicia Marti as her second photographer for this wedding. It was my final wedding of the season and boy oh boy did I end on a high note. Felicia and I made the scenic trek up to Fort Collins together so we wouldn’t have to sing to ourselves in our own cars. haha

Melissa and Aarons big day took place at a family friends home. If this heartwarming gesture doesn’t give you glimpse into the kind of people Melissa and Aaron are, I don’t know what will. I certainly do not have any friends who would open their home to me and my crazy flock of Canadians.

When we arrived on the property we were immediately greeted by friendly smiling faces and made to feel welcome inside their home. The property was completely adorned with wedding bliss. Twinkle lights in all the trees, love signage down the entire length of the driveway, and golf carts to shuttle people around the property. I was ready to move in.

As every bride should be pampered on their wedding day, Melissa truly had the royal treatment when it came to getting dressed. Her amazing sisters, daughter, nieces and mother helped her slip into her stunning wedding dress. She even rocked some red tights to keep her warm later that evening. So fun and so smart!!

Now, let’s talk about my favorite part of the day…their first look. Aaron and Melissa were originally on the fence about doing a first look. After talking it over they decided that it would be the best decision for them to get some pre-wedding jitters out and to have a romantic moment just the two of them before becoming man and wife. I’ve seen many a first looks and this one even had me crying.

I can not tell you how much I truly enjoyed photographing this day. I never wanted to sun to go down nor the day to end. If you too are thinking of a cozy and romantic wedding day like this and need someone to capture it, Im your girl! Hop on over to my contact page here. Let’s get together, share a shake at chic-fila or maybe grab a couple beers if your local. CLICK HERE!

A Sunny Mountaintop Proposal at Mount Falcon

John contacted me through facebook. A total fluke moment as I had comment on someones post looking for proposal location recommendations a friend of theirs. John saw my comment and quickly sent me a facebook message. Come to find out John and his soon to be fiancé, Jenna, were coming out to Denver for a quick and fun weekend away all the way from sunny, humid Florida! After sharing messages back and forth and planning for several weeks we finally landed on Mount Falcon for its closeness and views.

Now I have to really give credit where credit is due, because these two came 0 ft elevation to 5280ft. Neither of them has ever seen snow before nor do they hike in freezing temperatures. They do not have deer roaming their backyards- they have alligators. They are from a totally different world and they gave this hike everything they had. John wanted to propose almost immediately as he wanted to stress free all weekend and have the ability to enjoy and celebrate together. As they were unable to check into their Airbnb until later in the afternoon we figured this would be our perfect moment to plan the proposal. John and Jenna woke up at 3am, caught their flight to Denver, rented a car and drove immediately to Mount Falcon. Throughout this journey I was receiving texts from John keeping me updated on their schedule, their whereabouts and their outfits as I had never met either one of them before this day.


My plan had been to hike to the top and set up a romantic picnic site with pillows and flowers. They whole shebang. Unfortunately, neither John nor myself took into account the dramatic change in elevation coming straight off an airplane. Minor, minor oversight. My bad! Knowing that they would not actually make it to the top John found this amazing overview to pop the question. As I was already at the top waiting, I quickly sprinted my ass down the mountain. Camera and picnic gear bouncing everywhere. (if this isn’t proof that I do above and beyond for my peeps, I don’t know what is). Soon as I saw them in the distance I quickly came up with what I was going to say to convince a stranger to let me “photograph” them. I hide the picnic gear behind a tree, camera around my neck and approached them. Being friendly Colorado I walked past them with a smile, wave and a “hello.” After about 15 feet, I turned around, introduced myself saying I was a local photographer and could I bother them for a picture to use in my portfolio. BOOM! Seed planted. I did a few test shoots to get the lighting ready. Really just stalling for John. I asked them to dance and be silly to get their camera jitters outs. Than the magic happened.

Cue all three of us jumping up and down with excitement!

After finally comprehending what had just happened we took some much needed rest time before all heading down the mountain and over to Red Rock Amphitheater for some well deserved champagne and engagement photos.

On the journey down the mountain I was talking about the local wildlife in Colorado as compared to the local wildlife in Florida. Ya know, like deers verses alligators. That sort of normal everyday talk…. As we approached Red Rocks we were shockingly greeted by a herd of deer! I can not make this stuff up people. The universe just straight up provided for us that day.

These two were such great sports about the everything! From the quick changes in altitude, to the freezing temps, they never let their excitement or love for one another stray. I wish I could run around with them forever! You already know I am going to stalk them to Florida for their wedding.

Lookout Mountain Engagement Session | Golden, Co

This world is forever getting smaller. I am never shocked anymore by the degrees of separation between people. Andreae reached out to me via my website looking for more information on my wedding packages. After the reading the first few sentences of her story, I already knew we would going to become best friends. Her obsession for wine matched mine, her wit and overall joy for life captured me.

After meeting with Andreae, her amazing son Houston and her fiancé Kylan, we quickly discovered that we had meet once before. In the strange twist of this crazy universe we discovered we had all meet at the animal hospital that I work at! What are the chances! If im being honest, it was their yorkie, Oliver, who sealed the deal for me….

We all decide to meet up for their engagement photos at Lookout Mountain in Golden, CO. Lookout mountain holds special memories for them as Kylan’s family actually live up there. We gathered on a rather frigid day but we were blessed with Colorado’s most special gift. The sun.

They let me run around like the crazy woman I am. They enjoyed my cheesy jokes and they let me feed them shots! There were chest bumps, tickle fights and face lickings. I even dared them to see who could hold their ice cold hands under the others shirt the longest!! I have not had this much fun on an engagement session in a long, long while. It was truly just a group of friends hanging out, getting to know one another. I am besides myself with excitement for their upcoming nuptials at Cherry Creek Boathouse in August!!!!!

Denver Botanic Gardens Chatfield Farms Wedding

I must admit that I had only ever been to the Botanic Gardens at Chatfield in the fall. To me it was one of those standard fall outings. One where you went to the pumpkin patch, hit up a corn maze and even drank wine at the Lavender festival. I had never seen the Botanic Gardens when all the flowers were in full bloom. You guys - it is freaking MAGICAL! Every direction you turn there is a new and interesting flower or plant. Perfectly sculpted, perfectly happy. Being the crazy plant lady I am, I was beside myself when I step out of my car for Taylor and Kacey’s wedding.

The day started early at 8:00am with quiet morning coffee and mimosas but boy, did it pick up quickly. Kacey spent most of her morning relaxing in the bridal suite with her mother, mother-in-law and sister. While the gents spent their morning setting up tables and chairs, playing soccer and old school Fifa. ha! The relaxed tone was carried throughout the day. I only wish all of my weddings could feel this sweet and this relaxed. It was like being at a family bbq. I never wanted to leave.

Wild Opal Wedding Chatfield

Kacey + Taylor

Elegant and sweet

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Wild Opal Chatfield
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Sand Dunes National Park Bridal Styled Shoot | Michaela + Dylan

Michaela + Dylan drove out from beautiful Colorado Springs to meet me in the strangest location in Colorado for a bridal styled photoshoot. We planned to shoot in the mountains, but because of the unexpected snow, we decided to road trip down to the sand dunes national park and preserve in the San Luis valley, colorado. If you don't know, the dunes are nestled in-between mountains to the right and prairie lands to the left. the unusual landscape just doesn't make sense- I could not help but wonder, how did all this sand get there?! my theory is a family of giants who lived in the mountains decided that they wanted a family vacation to a beach but without all the trouble of travel. so instead created their own beach!...hahaha ok, maybe not but a girl can have an imagination right?

Our journey started with hair and makeup around the camp fire while we set up our campsite. we were fortunate enough to have the lovely and amazing Katie be beauty join us for hair and makeup. she is a wizard and if you are looking for someone to rock some killer makeup, she's your girl, hands down. around 4:00pm we set out into the dunes to find the perfect location. if you are planning on eloping or photographing in the Colorado sand dunes you will need a permit before arriving. you will also be limited to setting up any props within a specified area of the actual sand dunes, legally you will not be able to cross over the river line for shooting but must take photos before the river. the only exception to this is the "back woods dunes" which are not national protected so you may go anywhere within this area to shoot. 

As the evening went on, the sky was ever changing , from white to blue to pink to orange, it was such a perfect evening. the weather continued to hold out for some romantic kissing, barefoot dancing and a few butt squeezes. 

Sand dunes styled Shoot by Courtney Jordan
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Host:  Ashley Taylor Photography   Dress:  A and Be Bridal   Rentals:  Hunt and Gather Events   Floral:  Madelyn Claire Floral   Hair and Makeup:  Katie Be Beauty   Henna:  The Henna Luna   Jacket:  Ellen Walker Art   Calligraphy:  Everything Summer Calligraphy     interested in taking some bridal photos before or after your wedding? whats more romantic than wearing your dress or even renting another dress a second time?! contact me today or comment below for details!

Host: Ashley Taylor Photography

Dress: A and Be Bridal

Rentals: Hunt and Gather Events

Floral: Madelyn Claire Floral

Hair and Makeup: Katie Be Beauty

Henna: The Henna Luna

Jacket: Ellen Walker Art

Calligraphy: Everything Summer Calligraphy

interested in taking some bridal photos before or after your wedding? whats more romantic than wearing your dress or even renting another dress a second time?! contact me today or comment below for details!

Playful Engagement in Lost Gulch | Boulder, Colorado

ok, join me in envisioning the most scenic, stereotypical Colorado location. now envision that, that location is accessible from a 3 minute walk. it exists friends, I swear it!! 

lost gulch lookout in boulder, colorado.

not only is this location breathtaking and a total photographers dream but the drive up there is almost as amazing as the view from the top. windy two lane road, with tree line views from all sides. I immediately rolled the windows down, cranked up some tunes and took in that fresh, sweet mountain air.

 for the past year Mark and Ellie took a leap of faith together...they packed up their car, their lives, their little fur baby and moved to Denver from Tennessee. JUST THE TWO OF THEM. No family here, no friends here. They literally just woke up and started a new adventure. Hats off to them! Their care free, passion for adventure and life radiates from their faces throughout this entire photoshoot. Hands down the MOST FUN I have ever had at a shoot. Both Ellie and Mark excepted me as a long lost friend from our first moments together. I never wanted to stop clicking that shutter. I hope you can feel their joy from these photos because I know I can.


Cheers to them and their upcoming nuptials! 

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Lo + TJ | Paint Mines, Calhan, Colorado

Have you ever met someone and right away they change your outlook on life? 

Well that's Lauren and TJ. Right off the bat- soul mates. Right off the bat these two, they just mesh. Like peanut butter and jelly. 

Lo and TJ were married two years ago. So they have that married life comfort going for them. They just get one another and from the moment you meet them you feel at ease. You feel this immediate longing to share in a love like theirs. They have this whole hearted love for life- an outlook that just immediately consumed me and made me what to have fun in any and every moment.

 I myself met Lauren through a part time gig I have at Cyclebar Indoor Cycling studio and right away she accepted me as her friend. I was hooked. I will gladly roam the world with these two- photographing them and learning how to just enjoy life. 

Miriah + Nate | Echo Lake, Idaho Springs

Now if you have been with me for the past year you will recognize these two babes. Christmas 2016 I was starting out as a newbie photographer and Miriah's family asked me to take family photos of them all since everyone would be in town...Little back story I have known this real life mermaid for many, many years....Anyways the day was Christmas Eve, and Miriah's mom called me 2 hours before our shoot. She let me know that Nate was going to propose during the shoot and they'd love me to capture it. Ehhhh- what a friggin magical moment it was! Everyone was crying and hugging. Myself included. I must admit that several of my shots are blurry as I couldn't see through my own tears. Ha! 

Jumping forward one year they let me climb a mountain with them and take some snaps of their gorgeous faces in FREEZING cold weather. We are talking 12,000 ft, on a frozen lake, cue wind....Now to keep warmth in their hands and feet from falling off they tolerated me making them do jumping jacks and run from one location to the next. I honestly could not adore them more for being truly adventurous and brave. It was worth ever goosebump, I mean come on, look at their love SHINE!! 

I am beyond thrilled to stand up next to them as they become man and wife this coming summer. ~

 

Chantel + Chris | Lost Gulch, Boulder, CO

When your pals get engaged and you have an awesome idea for an engagement shoot - you pull out all the stops to make some magic. 

I have been wanting to go to Lost Gulch for sometime now. I had seen pictures of it on social media and knew it would make for a great photo opportunity. Cue Chantel and Chris.

Amazing scenery accompanied by incredible company, these two bought nothing but laughter and good vibes to the whole day. I have had the pleasure of knowing Chantel for over 10 years. Who can say that?! In those years I have watched her grown into a strong and independent woman. She has finally met her match in her counterpart- Chris.  He's smart, funny, and level-headed. The balance in their relationship is so clear in these photos it just melts me! That is always my goal in a photoshoot- to allow the viewers a sneak peak into someones love. Here you can see he is the protector and she brings out the playful side in him. 

I can not wait to watch these two get hitched!