Yes. In this video I say "Prostitutes everywhere". Revel in it.

Emily's Manifesto of 2014


I believe that wedding dresses can be short, sassy, red, pink, or any other color in between.  They shouldn’t be a dress that “just looks good”—the should be a dress that makes you think “Hell yes, I am hotter than a Mississippi Saturday afternoon in July.”

I believe that grooms can be pampered just as much as the ladies and they deserve it.

I don't shoot for blogs. I shoot emotions.

I believe in the timelessness of black and white photography. I will process at least 1/3 of your photos in black and white. I would love to process all of them in black and white, if I'm being honest. Ask me to do so and I'll love you forever. 

I believe that wedding photography trends are the worst and I will never ask you to pose in a field with a couch or to hold hands with your spouse and look angry.

I believe that bridesmaids dresses don’t need to match.  I also believe that you need not have a bridal party.  At all.  You can do it alone. It’s true!

I believe that your wedding photography should tell the story of your day, from start to finish, with no gaps and no awkwardly forced shots—let’s have fun

I believe that wedding cake is usually too expensive, but if you pay that much for the cake, you better get at least 3 pieces, bare min.I don't shoot for blogs. I focus on det

I believe that dogs should be allowed at any and all wedding related festivities. Also horses. Cats can Skype from home.

I believe that making your family happy is not nearly as important as making yourself happy.

I believe that your brother, your best friend, your 3rd grade teacher or yourselves are totally and completely legitimate (and sort of amazing) choice for an officiant.

I believe that slamming a shot of tequila before you walk down the aisle is a great way of saying, “Let’s do this.  This is the best.”

I believe that writing your own vows on old newspaper or on the prettiest linen paper isn’t as important as writing vows from the heart.

I believe that a good wedding ceremony is riddled with inside jokes that leaves the couple giggling and the guests thinking, “What just happened?”

I believe that a taco truck catering your wedding is 100 million times cooler than a tasting table of nondescript chicken.

I believe that anyone who quotes Dances with Wolves in their wedding vows will probably have a pretty rad marriage (case in point: me and Ian)

I believe that every single person I photograph is beautiful and every single love story is unique.

I believe that if you want to rock out to Miley Cyrus or Yo Yo Ma or Empire of the Sun before you walk down the aisle, you best believe I will be dancing along with you.

I believe in holding a bride’s hand as much (or as little) as she wants throughout the entire process.  And I’m not afraid to tell you when you need your hand held.

I believe in spirit animals and mine is a horse.  Yours might be a dolphin or a possum.  Ian’s is a raven.  Spirit animals are important and you should have one. If you don’t, that’s ok. I won’t judge. But I will help you find your animal….and once you do, it will be AWESOME. Trust me.


I believe that any couple who has watched the entire series of Friday Night Lights will 100% for sure make it, especially if any of their marriage is modeled after Coach Taylor and Tammy Taylor.

I believe in getting married in an outfit that YOU chose, be it your grandmother’s lace gown or a pair of kickass blue jeans.

I believe in making the wedding day and planning process as stress free as possible and will do anything in my power to ensure you have all your hair, eyebrows and sanity at the end of it. 

I believe that sites like The Knot or Martha Stewart Weddings and (yes, I'm going to say it) PINTEREST are designed to cause us all massive anxiety and chest pains.

I believe in photographing the heck out of your tattoos, blue hair, polka dotted toenail polish or nose piercing.  Those aren’t flaws, that’s your story!

I believe in taking off expensive shoes when it’s raining during your backyard wedding and letting your feet sink into the mud in all its wonderful July warm goodness.

I believe your wedding day should be a pretty awesome day...but if it's not like...the BEST DAY OF YOUR LIFE, it's sort of ok.  

I believe that documenting love and joy and tears of giddiness and over the moon emotions is my job and one I take very seriously.

I believe in being friends with my clients and I am fiercely protective and loyal when it comes to my friends.

I believe in what my mother has always told me, which has always calmed my mind, “What will be, will be.”

're still reading?  Well....ok then, guess I haven't scared you off yet!  I'll keep babbling then....

I wanted to call this business Damn Good Photos.  I still might do that.  I think I was afraid I would scare people off....I'm sort of over that fear, I think. 

Let's cut to the chase--you are looking for a photographer who gets you.  You want someone to capture the fun moments, to stay out of your way, slam a glass of champagne with you before you walk down the aisle and maybe help you wrangle the ring bearer back into position.  That's me.  You most likely do not want a photographer who will make you stand dramatically in front of a window in your gown or create a shot of you lying on a randomly placed couch in the middle of a washed out field (like seriously, why is there a Victorian couch in a field? Come ON!)  I'm not going to force your wedding party into silly group shots all jumping into the air or make the groom put his coat on 5 times in a row to ensure we capture that "perfect shot".  

Nope. I trust that you're beautiful exactly the way you are--naturally, without a lot of pomp and circumstances.  I'll make you laugh super hard with my sparkling personality and I'll calm you down when you start to freak out.  I'll be with you from start to finish and you'll start to feel like I'm a second (really adorable) appendage by the end of the day--but it will be so worth it.

Bottom line--if you hire me, I'll shoot the hell out of your wedding while capturing all those rad moments that you don't realize are happening because you're too busy shaking your booty on the dance floor.  You'll see kick ass photos that highlight you two as a couple.  It will be awesome.  I promise.    

A few more interesting tidbits about Emily by Emily:

1) For the past 10 years, I was a full-time English teacher in Chicago Public Schools. Students tend to either think I'm insane or secretly emmulate me. I teach The Great Gatsby as a crime novel and let me just say this: it kicks ass.

2) I grew up riding horses. I know how to make a horse jump over large objects, how to clean a horse's feet and I can answer almost any horse related trivia you throw my way.

3) I am totally obsessed with Pat Conroy and when I finally met him last year in Georgia, I had to sit down afterwards because I was having a panic attack. And his hands were as soft as a baby's bottom. Seriously.

4) I (slowly) run lots of half marathons. I swim a lot and practice a lot of hot yoga.

5) At one point in my college career I was earning a paycheck for answering questions on a Beverly Hills 90210 online trivia bulletin board.

6) My husband, Ian, and I live in Michigan with our buddha-esque shepherd named Tasha. We have never heard her bark, but one time she did swipe the wing off a pigeon. But we're pretty sure it was by accident.

7) I am currently running 5 Twitter accounts for various imaginary characters from The West Wing and Pat Conroy novels.

8) I went to the Universty of Michigan and got 2 degrees from there--one in English Literature and one in Education. I attended about 2 football games in 5 years, fell asleep in the Fishbowl at least 3 times and spent most of my college time drinking sangria at Dominck's and eating at NYPD Pizza.

9) My husband and I are in the process of restoring a really broken down farmhouse in Leelanau County. We refer to it as "That Meth House on M22" when we talk to locals about it. I mean, we've certainly never cooked meth there...but someone, at some point, probably has. So it seems like a good name.

10) If you still want to hire me after reading this list, then that means we are a great fit.