Holy moley, friends. My arm is dragging from being at my desk all day and my wrists feel like they may never lay straight again. But it’s all worth it!! Today I’m showing you all my absolute favorites from EVERY. SINGLE. WEDDING. I’ll give you a fair warning now, there are 293 photos. Here’s some music to get us started (it’s wedding music – ’tis a theme tonight).
I know, I know. It was just so difficult choosing these!! I even went through them a second time and deleted some that although they were beautiful, just weren’t my absolute favorite. So, I tried to help you out with this post, but the truth is…this is long. But it’s the last 5 years of my life!! It’s the end of an era for Paul and I. I even started going through and cleaning out folders from years ago – some still had the RAW photos in their folders, others still had the JPEG originals (typically when my bride and groom receive their photos, I get rid of the originals. I do keep the entire wedding though, just the edited ones), and some had extra sub-folders with nothing in them. Clearly it’s time to do some freshening up on my external.
(Seriously, it’s really hard to type right now. My fingers are almost numb.)
You’ve heard the stories, friends; how my first brides and grooms only saw photos of my nephews and some flowers before booking me. They trusted me, they supported me, and they gave me that leap of faith to create an honest-to-goodness-real-life business for the last 5 years. When I decided to quit, I thought I had failed myself and others. I couldn’t see the point of starting and then ending so soon. I thought the last 5 years had been a waste. But these past 6 months or so, I’ve begun to see just how much purpose this business has had and will continue to have in my future. Because of these beautiful brides and grooms and their faith in me (every single one of you!) I’ve been able to create a foundation for what’s coming next in my life. They’ve given me my own brand and I’ve been able to utilize this blog for not just weddings, but for showing you snippets of our life and my dreams. I would never have had the courage to do what I’m jumping into now if all of you had not been there to invite me into your lives and weddings.
So this blog post isn’t about me and the ending of one career; it’s a dedication to you, my brides and grooms. Thank you from the very bottom of my heart for everything you have given to me. You are the knees to my bees and ya know what? I love ya. That’s right. I do. Picture me giving you all big hugs through the screen. Because I definitely would be hugging you if we were in person, meeting at Caribou again, getting kicked out for staying past closing time. Or hugging you after you’ve cut the cake, we’ve run away to find the sun, you’ve done your first dance together, and you’re having the time of your life. *Big squeeze!*
Enjoy reliving all of your beautiful, beautiful wedding days. Cheers to you!!! (I hope you have your champagne ready – don’t make me feel like I’m the only one! :))
PS. There’s someone else that gets a big ole’ hug on this blog, and I’ll bet you agree with me – my darling Paul. You are my rock. I could never have done this without you. Whenever I felt stressed or upset, you calmed me down and cheered me up. You helped me through chaos; you took care of me at weddings when I was sick with the flu; you trooped through weddings with your torn ACL; you made people feel so comfortable with your genuine kindness and sense of humor; you took so many beautiful photos (and are the reason we’ve been published in two magazines!!); you’ve been my constant through all of this. Love you most and thank you a million more times.
Although this technically wasn’t my first actual wedding, Sean and Hannah deserve this blog post too. They were one of my firsts and this still remains one of my favorite sessions. :)
This is the wedding that truly convinced me I wanted to be a wedding photographer. I co-shot this for Meg Cooper (with Paul!) and this was actually the second one I shot with her. The first one we did together completely turned me off. I went home telling Paul I would only do families and babies (ha!). I’d already told her I would help her with this wedding, so off we went to Brainerd. This wedding was exactly what I thought weddings would be like; it was all about the marriage, not the wedding itself. There was genuine happiness, tears, and so much joy. So I owe a part of my career to this wedding right here. :)
Our first official Nikki Tran Photography wedding!! (It was in the below-zeroes that day. Coldest wedding we’ve ever done.)
We had just bumped into Carrie Underwood’s husband and Tegan had gotten a photo with him!
With so many people in this photo, there was some definite Photoshopping needed. :)
I always loved this from Mark to Janelle. :)
Mark was one of my brother’s childhood friends, along with his twin brother, Jim. I felt so incredibly honored they asked me to photograph it. :)
She did what every bride wants to do when she walks up the aisle. :)
Our first engagement session was with these two! :)
Recognize Ellen and Andre on the left? Their wedding is allllll the way at the end…:)
I love this. It reminds me of F.R.I.E.N.D.S. :)
So much blue.
Ha! Love this!
I don’t even think this photo was planned or posed, but it’s seriously my all-time favorite. And these two? They’re just wonderful. :)
Oh my goodness, his mom was so sweet! (More music? Why didn’t you say so?!)
These two! Oh I miss them – Casey and I went to college together and now they have a little baby!! Time flies, friends.
Sweetest ceremony ever.
A small town wedding with over 300 people present. How lucky. :)
Happiest bride ever. :)
I still haven’t gotten over these photos. Again, the one on the right wasn’t even planned (nor was the one up above of her kissing her baby). This wedding holds a special place in my heart.
Bubba!! Miss these two.
:) :) :)
This was the start of my “glowy” photos. :) :)
Oh the fall colors!!
One of my first friends from St. Cloud. :)
This is probably my most memorable wedding. McKaela emailed me just two weeks before this, telling me her and Seun were getting married at night, in Rice Park, right before Christmas. My heart skipped a beat, I had so many doubts in myself about doing a night-time wedding, but we went for it. It’s still to this day, one of mine and Paul’s favorite weddings. :)
Sweetest things!! :)
This wedding was just stunning. Everything about it.
I think we had 5-7 minutes until the rain came down and seriously, it has never stormed/rained like it did this day. I was soaked within 30 seconds!
Sabrina! You look like a princess!!
I’ve always loved this one. :)
I’d always wanted to photograph at the Cathedral. St. Paul holds a special place in my heart. :)
The lighting, Meghan – I love this!! More music?
Prettiest dessert table.
Typically I don’t do Pinterest photos…but my goodness, this little doll is my favorite.
Ahhh!! I love this!!
Definitely a new type of wedding for us – at a campsite, on a lake, with a pontoon. So much fun!!
Yeeees. Paul’s wonderful. :)
Who says you can’t dance in the streets of Minneapolis?!
Ahh!! Avery!! I love this dance!!
That lighting, seriously.
Oh Jenelle. You’re so pretty.
Loved the colors.
Oh this was such a special day. (Read the story here.)
Loved all the gold.
And the colors.
And the U of M campus!
Such a beautiful venue for Brad and Nikki!!
My beautiful, childhood best friend. :)
Love this family. Just missing Frank and Larry! :) More music?
Best father-daughter dance.
The lighting – so dreamy.
I loved practicing with the details at weddings. :)
Paul got pretty good, too. :)
I could have taken portraits of them all day.
Love the pastels from this wedding!
The fall colors!! Such a beautiful day for a barn wedding.
This venue was a dreeeeaaammm.
Their exit was so happy and joyful!!
Billy!! My childhood softball coach – so honored to be a part of his wedding.
Beautiful Jen. :)
Another childhood friend – again, so honored.
The most sweetest dance ever.
Kerby!! Love this!
My goodness, another wedding so close to my heart. These two were an absolute dream.
A confetti exit, a carriage ride, and fireworks during their first dance?! How incredibly perfect.
Gorgeous Diana!! (One more song? This is the song we danced to at our wedding. :))
We were hoping for snow but instead got a beautiful, misty, glowy photo with Christmas trees. :)
The snow at this wedding was like a dream (I keep saying that word, but it’s true!).
Look at it!! The big, soft, fluffy flakes!
Yes, like something out of a dream. :)
Erin’s big sister!! :)
All the girls love their daddy. :)
Winnie!! I’m a sucker for puppy dogs. :)
So light and airy. We lucked out with the rain on this day, too. I swear, with the exception of one wedding, Paul and I bring only the best weather.
See that beauty on the right?! My first bride. :)
Another wedding that holds a special place with me. Love these two people.
Haha I love the way they are together. :)
Such a joyful moment!!
Love these two!!
Sparklers in the winter in downtown St. Paul. Magic.
Our last wedding!!
My goodness, this guy is awesome.
Love these two people!
And here we are at our first wedding…
Excuse the cell phone quality, but I’m so glad we got one with these two. I wish I had made it mandatory to take one with each bride and groom…
With two of my lovely brides and grade-school friends. :)
First friends in St. Cloud. Love these girls!
Me and E!!
Selfies became more common…
And that my friends, is an absolute wrap. Love you all!! xoxoxo