The journey to create Kyle and Byron’s wedding film is one overflowing with stories to tell. We didn’t know that we’d end up making such a multi-faceted film, nor did we know we’d be spending so much time with these two wonderful souls. From filming their wedding in Holland, MI to filming their post-wedding story session in Los Angeles, CA, every moment with these two was filled with laughter and love. We’re so happy to have worked on their film and to have had some great opportunities for Ali and I to hone our craft.
Their wedding day began on a cool and misty September Sunday in Holland, MI. Ali and Taylor split up to get each of the grooms getting ready with their respective wedding parties. Taylor spent the morning with Byron and his group at the Courtyard Marriott, and Ali with Kyle at a home nearby.
We love filming the “getting ready” portions of the day at these kinds of locations, and for different reasons. Hotels tend to have a nice clean aesthetic and a lot of white space, which is great for showing contrast and giving that part of the film a sense of anticipation. Homes of course have a personal appeal, and can generate a sense of family and safety. It also can accentuate strong emotions, like when Kyle listened to the cover of Always Remember Us This Way that Byron recorded for him. One of our favorite shots from the film is when Kyle is overcome with emotion while listening to the cover. You can see the love they share together, even before they’ve even seen each other on their day!
After our grooms were dressed and ready, we drove to the old airport outside of downtown, where Kyle and Byron shared their first look. We loved having their whole wedding party there to witness this moment. Their wedding party, we found, was (and is) their strongest asset. Their support system is incredible and the people who were a part of their wedding day made it so special for them. Being able to capture their excitement and joy, with their closest friends beaming in the background was such a delight for us. I can’t stress enough how much we love LOVE. Our airport session was brief, but we got some great wide shots of the two of them dancing, playing, and holding hands. It’s always so much fun to capture the couple after their first-look. Emotions are swirling and no one can stop smiling! The grey skies and white brick backdrop was perfect for their black-and-white-themed wedding day.
In keeping with the theme, our bus took us to a small portside quarry with mountains of grey granite. There, we popped champagne, danced, twirled, and captured them and their wedding party with the surreal mounds of stone. We even had a magestic sand crane make an appearance and Taylor went full NatGeo in an attempt to film the bird. Cranes were a favorite bird of Byron’s late Step-mother and so we wanted to make sure we got footage of it. We only captured a small glimpse, but were still able to make sure it ended up in the final film.
After more at the quarry and a quick stop at an abandoned greenhouse, we set off for their ceremony. Port 393 is a gorgeous venue that offers clean lines, sleek use of wood and metal, and a seamless indoor/outdoor concept. Kyle and Byron were married on the outdoor patio space where friends and family got to watch the first moments of their forever story. Their officiant, a close friend, had the most thoughtful and intentional words to say about the to-be-weds. We used her words throughout the film as a way to help tell more of their story. Using vows, readings, speeches, and other spoken word moments are a must when creating a wedding film. It’s a way to tell more of the story and for some of the most meaningful words spoken about the couple to be shared. Byron and Kyle read their vows for us in the reception space after the ceremony so that we could have two recordings to work with. We like to mix the candidness of the vows read during the ceremony with the intimate solo readings as a way to show the arc of your intentions. Or, better put, your vows read to us are personal and the intentions exist within you. When you read them to your partner at the ceremony, those intentions are now known to your partner and the manifestation of them can begin. The path from writing the words to speaking them to their intended recipient are magical!
The wedding culminated with dinner and dancing and finally a big sparkler exit! Kyle and Byron asked us to stay (how could we say no!), so we stuck around later to capture a few more things and boogied down to a couple songs with the other guests! 10/10 playlist btw.
So here’s where things get interesting. After the wedding we felt so good about the content we’d gotten, especially because we were allotted three whole hours(!) with the couple and their wedding party before the ceremony. It made it easier to capture everything we needed and we were grateful to have had that much time. Ali and myself had decided about a month after their wedding that we would be buying a camper and truck and traveling the country during Michigan’s wedding off-season. We planned on going down to the Southwest to explore, put on some styled shoots, and film some warm climate weddings. Well, guess who moved to LA after their wedding? We connected with Kyle and Byron and they expressed interest in us coming to do a two-day story session with them in their new California home. We wanted to get some cute footage of them in their natural element, but also wanted to tell their story more wholly. The story of their lives together didn’t end with a sparkler send-off and we wanted their film to reflect that– After all, a huge life change was happening and their wedding day was just kicking it off! And so we drove out to meet them in Los Angeles. We rode around with them, grabbed cocktails, danced on Venice Beach, and played games at the Santa Monica Pier. The ocean, the sunset, and the neon lights of the carnival were a spectacular setting. Kyle and Byron so graciously offered for us to stay the night and so we hung out as friends and spent the night talking and laughing.
The next morning, Ali and I rose early and filmed the newly wed’s morning routine. We chatted with them on the couch and asked them about life, love, and the things they were most grateful for. They spoke about their move and how the people they love most helped support them in their journey. For Ali and myself, immersing ourselves in their life was so special and we loved hearing about what matters most to them. Finally, we ended our stay with a trip to the Angeles National Forest for a hike with their dog Miah. Kyle and Byron chose this as it’s one of their favorite ways to spend a weekend day.
All in all this was the most ambitious project we’ve taken on to date. We felt lucky to have had so much time with them on their big day and doubly so that they wanted an extended Story Session in their new home. For most people, hiring a videographer for their wedding is about breathing life into the still moments and capturing the details that make up their wedding day. For us, it’s about creating a film that encapsulates who you are with your partner; the love, the adoration, the meaningful and lasting bond you share. Story Sessions before and/or after the wedding day take your wedding film to another level and can help show the depth of your relationship to your partner. We love LOVE and we love making films about love.
Kyle and Byron, yours was one for the books.