They met in Iowa City during medical/dental school–she’s now a surgeon and he’s a dentist–and they have family close to the area so even though they now reside in Texas, where Maria is doing her surgery residency, it made sense for them to come back to the place where it all started for them, right downtown in the heart of the university campus.
It was just a week after they first met that Austin says he knew Maria was the one. “I knew I loved her after a week. And when she stuck around after that, I knew she wasn’t going anywhere. Every day after that, she has shown me more and more how she’s the best person for me and we are meant to be together.”
Maria doesn’t pinpoint a date, but says it was a lot of little things that added up. “How he’d pack my lunches and leave little notes inside. How well we agreed on big things like our values and how we would want to raise kids. How well he supported me when I was upset. A big thing for us is how well we communicate; so I think how well we work through disagreements or difficult times in our relationship has made us both very confident that we’ve each found the one.”
Maria’s aunt is Brenda of Town or Country Event Design & Coordination so planning a wedding from out of state was a complete nonissue as every final last detail was planned and thought out. (My organized self loves working with another organized soul like Brenda Strief!) We knew we had very little time to photograph the details on the wedding day so we flew in and barely caught our breaths before taking as many shots as we could. Thankfully, Brenda had everything ready for us, including these gorgeous florals, and we worked like we were in fast-forward. These ended up being some of my favorite detail shots to date.
Aside from her scalpel skills, Maria is also a talented artist and made this beautiful map for their guests, including some of their favorite dining spots, the ceremony and reception locations, parking, and the medical and dental schools.
If you ever need a hotel that boasts the best light for getting ready photos, please grab yourself a corner suite at Hotel Vetro!
Their beloved Boomer, who joined us for their winter engagement session right before this past Christmas, stayed in Texas with some friends, but he was there in spirit for sure!
It’s a well-known fact that I love harvest tables (I wrote a whole blog post about it!) primarily because I like the concept of gathering together with your bridal party rather than being on display while you eat. From a photography perspective, harvest tables give a lot more angles for me to photograph from as I can circle around rather than just be in front or slightly to the side. You can see here that we were able to go all the way around, getting shots from pretty much every single angle of both the speakers and the couple.
While the dance floor was hopping, we popped back outside for a few quick photos with the sun low in the sky; golden light. Directly outside the hotel is the famous ped mall, which was actually very empty for a summer Saturday night, then we circled through the walkway, and headed up to the top floor of the adjacent parking ramp. I’ve actually shot up there before for some engagement sessions and I loved how it looks up there and I knew we’d get some more light as we went higher above rooftops. Maria & Austin were 100% on board with it and as we got off the elevator at the top of the parking garage, Maria said, “Actually…I have an idea.” And that is the story of how they climbed on top of the parking garage wall in their wedding clothes.
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Photography: Emily Crall Photography
Wedding Coordinator: Town or Country Event Design
Florals: Wilson Avenue HyVee
Cake Artist: Tip Top Cakes
DJ: Generation X
Makeup & Hair: Eden Salon & Spa
Maids’ Gowns: Nordstrom
Suits: Generation Tux
Chiavari Chairs: Mick & Tammy Kahler
Ceremony Venue: Trinity Episcopal Church
Reception Venue & Catering: Graduate Iowa City