Love in the Berkshires, by Falcon Griffith and Daniel Orren of Chellise Michael Photography [Rf Wedding of the Week]

March 1, 2017

By Jacqueline Tobin

When this couple told the team at Chellise Michael Photography that they didn’t want “the stereotypical wedding photography and have been searching endlessly for someone who fits that bill,” only to stumble upon their work on Pinterest, the stars aligned from both the client and photographer perspective. “Accepting their wedding was a no-brainer,” says Falcon Griffith, a photographer at the CMP photo studio, who also had CMP shooter Daniel Orren by her side. “Everything they described is a CMP dream, and especially when they mentioned that they don’t want stereotypical wedding photos, this is 100 percent our client.”

All photos © Chellise Michael Photography

Lilia and Doug felt right at home in front of Griffith’s and Orren’s lenses. “Working with them you could feel how in love they were, how much Doug adored Lilia, and Lilia is so gorgeous but also not afraid to let down her guard and just be her silly, goofy self in front of the camera,” Griffith says. Before their wedding, they shot the couple’s engagement session at their Brooklyn apartment (“Their dog, TJ, was part of the whole shoot and wedding,” Griffith adds) and at Fort Tilden beach in Queens. And the wedding was quintessentially Lilia and Doug, the photographers say.

With their love of adventure and travel, the venue they chose in the Berkshires, called August Moon, was a perfect fit for this couple, and the photographers saw it as a big plus too. “We particularly loved shooting at August Moon for the variety of portrait locations it had to offer—from the forest to even inside the main house with vintage furniture, it was truly dynamic,” Griffith says.

“There was a care to detail throughout every ounce of their wedding, from the gorgeous floral arch where their ceremony took place, to Lilia’s grandfather officiating the wedding,” Griffith says, “it was one of the most intimate gatherings I had witnessed where everyone felt so connected and full of joy.”

Lilia and Doug hired the outdoor catering company Heirloom Fire to take care of the food, which Griffith says was particularly “mind-blowing to witness.” Chicken was roasted over the fire, there was homemade apple cider and hand-churned fresh coffee beans, among other things, “which felt like being in a time machine. I had never seen outdoor catering as a production in itself. It was amazing to capture, impossible to put into words but it felt like we were in a movie—I was captivated as much as the guests were!”

After the dinner and dancing, the guests wandered to a bonfire where they ate s’mores together as the dogs ran around. “It reminded me of the true purpose of weddings and why I love shooting them,” Griffith concludes. “It’s all about gathering the people who matter most to you and just having a great time, all in the name of celebrating love and community.”

Cameras: Canon 5D Mark III (Griffith); Contax G1, Canon 5D Mark III (Orren)
Film: Kodak Portra 400 (Orren)
Lenses: Sigma 35mm f/1.4 Art, Canon 50mm f/1.2, Canon 85mm f/1.8 lens (Griffith); Sigma 24-35mm f/2 Art, Sigma 35mm f/1.4 Art, Sigma 50mm f/1.4 Art, Canon 50mm f/1.2, Canon 100mm f/2.8, Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 IS (Orren)
Lighting: Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT (Griffith); Canon Speedlite 580EX II, 600EX-RT (Orren)

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