» detroit, ann arbor, toledo . fine art wedding and portrait photographer melissa squires day to day blog companion

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Are these the best photos from Bon and Johns day, I don’t know, I’ve never taken so many images before and I don’t think I took one too many!  These tell a bit of the tale of their wedding day.  Friends and family all uniting in a true bringing in Bonsitu’s family Oromo (from the Horn of Africa) and Hindu traditions and Johns Scandinavian roots.  It was amazing.   Ana and Samantha from @twofootcreative were so on top of things the bride and groom could focus on the traditions and love and everything went off without a hitch!!  It was a specail day and beyond fun to photograph… the photos start with Bon getting ready, then her Oromo ceremony with the women bringing her to be wed and the men bringing the groom and then “negotiating” the deal.  The Hindu ceremony was about love and reverence and celebrated the parents, as well as the new family Bon and John, are creating!  Here is a bit of a taste of their fantastic day.


Senior sessions are a special kind of thing… it’s this in-between world where the student is almost grown up, but not quite on their own… I remember when I was graduating and I thought I knew everything and I wasn’t sure about anything.  Samantha has it a bit more together than that, smart, beautiful and a great ball player she is going to college on a softball scholarship, so after doing some images at the Botanical Gardens we hit her hometown field and did some live action ball shots!!! Congrats Samantha on your hard work and the world will be your oyster!!

My idea of an optimal session is mostly unplanned, this vision only works if the family or couple or whomever I’m photographing can let go a bit and just enjoy themselves without a lot of pre conceived notions.  Katie and Ondre are bringing their two families together into one big family at the end of September.  We decided to meet up and go in their van to a big field outside a church and just play a bit!  The best part was it was their engagement session, so the kids didn’t know they might be getting in on the action!  After spending a bit of time with mom and dad and one mandatory everyone in the picture family portrait the kids were free to do what they wanted and I got to run around for a bit and take some of the most fun photos I’ve taken in a long time!! Thank you Katie and Ondre for having such beautiful families and bringing them together and letting me photograph it!! Can not WAIT for the wedding in the big house!!!!

It’s always the moms that get me.  I lost my mother young and yearn for her sometimes, especially when the camera is out.  When I photograph, whatever it is,  weddings, families, senior sessions, I find I spend a little extra time on the moms.  In family sessions I make sure mom get’s a few of just her, some of her with her partner if she has one, and then her and the kids, ESPECIALLY the older kids, because they are growing up so fast.  Weddings I tend to cry during the mother son dances, I can see myself there in not so long a time.  Senior sessions are especially wonderful.  This is the big moment, the celebration of the child becoming the adult and leaving high school to become their own person!  It’s exciting, terrifying, amazing and beautiful for the graduate.  For the moms, well it’s super hard.  I’ve had moms call me crying because they can’t even look at the pictures, not because they don’t love them but because they love them so much, and what they represent is a hard thing for parents.  Our job is not done, but the heavy lifting is mostly in the past.

I have known EJ and her family for years and have photographed her and the crew.  This was something special.  Her first born is a senior and of course, I enjoyed photographing Josh, he’s just the whole thing, smart, kind, caring, witty and handsome.  But I also enjoyed capturing a bit of Mom with Josh… She’ll have these pictures of her son, and some day her son will have these photographs of him and his mom.  Thank you EJ for letting me be part of your lives, it’s just a real joy to capture your family.


A stylized mini session for Darren and Adrian’s wedding announcment became a really special moment in which Darren presented Adrian with his wedding present.  It was really a wonderful thing to get to be at and such an amazing moment to photograph.  The back of the painting is a reading from their wedding.   If you see them ask them the story of how they discovered it!!  Afterwards, we had some fun riding a tandem bike the same colour as my roadster and making portraits in the garden :)


Take a peek and read the story of their romantic as hell love story!! 

We played with light and shadow and then we walked down to the cascades in Ann Arbor.  It was special because we walked right past the house they first lived in together and it was pretty wonderful to just sit and hear their Treasure Mart stories!  Then we went down by the river over the bridge and it was fun to explore from a different direction a place I know pretty well, but apparently can still learn more about!  They like trains and electricity and I really enjoyed getting to know Lane and Noah.