The Wallflower Photography Blog


Portrait of bride and groom under brick archway on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

We’re still trying to catch our blog up after a busy summer and fall of weddings, when we had to prioritize delivering amazing wedding photography to our awesome clients over blogging about it. (So sue us.) It’s February and we’re still blogging about September weddings, but we’re going to skip ahead to the December wedding of Kelsey and John, which was a very unusual wedding for Wallflower in one key regard: Out of over 200 weddings photographed by Wallflower Photography since 2003, this was the first involving a photographer not named Laura or Scott!

The reason for this is simple: Laura was 9 months pregnant, and about to pop (which she did 5 days later). Wedding photography is surprisingly demanding, and she just wasn’t going to be able to cut it for 6 hours. Our search for a Laura-replacement led us to Catherine Abegg of Calima Portraits, and we’re so glad we found her. It’s not like we were worried whether she could do a good job filling Laura’s big shoes — we never would’ve picked her if that was the case — but it was a still a relief to see her dive into action and know we’d still be delivering Wallflower-caliber photos.

This wedding was also unique in that the whole thing took place on the beautiful campus of the University of Puget Sound, a nationally ranked liberal arts college in the middle of residential North Tacoma where Kelsey and John graduated — and so did both Laura and I, a few years earlier! We started at Kilworth Chapel on the north end of campus, where we caught the last stages of both girls and guys getting ready.

Photo of bride getting her dress on in Kilworth Chapel upstairs on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Photo of bride's mother watching as her daughter gets ready in Kilworth Chapel upstairs on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Photo of groom and groomsman in mirror, getting ready in Kilworth Chapel basement on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Photo of groom tying brother's tie in Kilworth Chapel basement on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Kelsey and John didn’t want to see each other before the ceremony, but we also didn’t want a huge portrait workload just after the ceremony, so we planned for a split portrait session, as we often do in this case. Catherine shot a series of portraits of Kelsey and her bridesmaids in the forested area next to Kilworth, and then once the girls were safely hidden back inside, I took John and the guys to the same spot for a brief shoot. We took the portraits that required both of them together after the ceremony.

Photo of bride and bridesmaids on Kilworth Chapel steps on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Portrait of bride and bridesmaids near Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Portrait of bride near Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Detail of bride and bridesmaids' feet walking near Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Portrait of groom and groomsmen near Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Portrait of groom near Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Portrait of groom and groomsmen near Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Kilworth’s sanctuary is a beautiful space for wedding ceremonies, particularly thanks to the 20-foot-tall backdrop of silver pipes and delicate gold scrollwork that make up the chapel’s pipe organ — built by a Puget Sound alum, no less. Kelsey and John’s wedding included a sand ceremony, in which they combined two different-colored sands into a single vase to represent the joining together of their two lives. After their first kiss, two bagpipers — one of them a college friend — gave a rousing soundtrack to their walk back up the aisle and on to their reception.

Photo of grandmas chatting before wedding ceremony at Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Fisheye photo of wedding ceremony at Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Side view of wedding ceremony at Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Photo of bride smiling at groom in wedding ceremony at Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Photo of groom reciting vows in wedding ceremony at Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Photo of bride and groom laughing in wedding ceremony at Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Photo of sand combining ceremony in wedding at Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Photo of bride and groom proclaimed husband and wife in wedding ceremony at Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Photo of bride and groom bagpiped from wedding ceremony in Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Photo of bride and groom snuggling after wedding ceremony in Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Detail of bride's bouquet on couch in Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Before we headed across campus to the reception, we photographed all the family portraits at the Kilworth altar, wedding party portraits out in front of the chapel, and then took Kelsey and John on a walking tour of campus, stopping at a few key spots along the way. The covered brick walkway between Jones Hall and Howarth Hall was our first destination. It was really this time that was most strange, and fascinating, to work with Catherine. For most of the wedding day, we worked relatively independently to capture different perspectives on what was happening in front of us, knowing what each other was doing but not directly working together. The portrait session, however, is a time of creating moments and poses, and it was fun to see what different creative ideas Catherine had than I did — or that Laura, who has her own unique and awesome style, would have. I love Catherine’s portrait at the top of this blog post best of all, I think!

Portrait of wedding party on steps of Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Portrait of wedding party in front of Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Portrait of bride and groom in front of Kilworth Chapel on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Portrait of bride and groom under brick archway on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Portrait of bride and groom under brick archway on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

John still has a few connections in the campus security department, having worked there as a student, which helped gain us access into Wyatt Hall, a relatively new academic building with a huge window of art glass donated by Dale Chihuly — he’s a Tacoma native, and once attended Puget Sound. I was pleased to discover the highly polished floors were so reflective! Then we took a quick stop by a favorite gargoyle on our way to the reception in Marshall Hall, in the Wheelock Student Center.

Photo of bride and groom walking through University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Portrait of bride and groom with Chihuly glass behind, in Wyatt Hall on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Detail of bride and groom's lower half with Chihuly glass behind, on University of Puget Sound campus, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

Detail of gargoyle on University of Puget Sound campus with bride and groom in background, by Wallflower Photography of Tacoma, Washington

After enjoying somewhere close to 1000 surprisingly good cafeteria meals in Marshall Hall as a student, it was really interesting to return 11 years later to photograph a reception. It’s a terrific room, with soaring ceiling, thick wood beams, brick walls, and a second-story balcony level that looks down onto the main floor. Strings of white lights and “mood lighting” transformed the room into a fabulous reception venue, and one with far more personal meaning and emotional significance than most rented spaces. Enjoy these dance photos from a Marshall Hall wedding reception — but first, a portrait at dusk of all Puget Sound alumni in attendance, which is surely destined to be featured in the next issue of Arches, the school’s alumni magazine! Yep, that’s me on the far right.

Portrait of all University of Puget Sound alumni attending wedding on school campus in Tacoma, Washington

Detail photo of candle and placard at wedding reception in Marshall Hall on University of Puget Sound campus in Tacoma, Washington

Photo of bride and groom's first dance at wedding reception in Marshall Hall on University of Puget Sound campus in Tacoma, Washington

Photo of bride and groom's first dance at wedding reception in Marshall Hall on University of Puget Sound campus in Tacoma, Washington

Photo of bride and groom's first dance at wedding reception in Marshall Hall on University of Puget Sound campus in Tacoma, Washington

Photo of group dancing at wedding reception in Marshall Hall on University of Puget Sound campus in Tacoma, Washington

Congrats Kelsey and John! And thanks for representing Wallflower so well, Catherine!

— Scott

One Response to “Kelsey and John’s wedding:
University of Puget Sound campus, Tacoma”

  1. Catherine Abegg

    THANK YOU SO MUCH! It was such a fantastic experience working with you, and I’m so glad that I was the perfect fit for you on that day… well, second perfect fit! And I’m so happy that you two are all settled in with your growing family and everyone is happy & healthy. This was such a great time for me… the images are beautiful… and I’m so thankful that you all trusted me. love love love.

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