Janelle Rodriguez Photography Blog » Award Winning Wedding Photographer

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I met Olivia and Chris at a gazebo that rests in the heart of Sackets Harbor, New York. I’m glad they took me to the area because it’s a gorgeous Harbor tucked between Henderson Bay and Black River Bay. Scouting the location I found incredible historical buildings and my favorite part, a trail along the water on the Sackets Harbor Battlefield Alliance. I was excited to meet Olivia and Chris during sunset to celebrate and photograph their engagement!

Olivia and Chris met in high school. Yes, high school sweethearts that actually began their journey at Honors Society during their Junior and Senior year. They stayed together through out high school and moments of distance. And now Olivia moved to Long Island with Chris to support his studies in medical school. Now that’s love! I loved meeting and getting to know these two because they are both so kind and down to Earth. They both love sports like golfing and being foodies (I totally agree with this!). When Chris isn’t playing sports he’s studying hard to be a doctor. And Olivia is an artist! She draws, paints, and even redesigns old furniture for their home. She’s going to have to teach me how to do this someday!

I’m so very happy for their engagement and their lives together! Congratulations to Olivia and Chris! I look forward to working with you both again for your wedding which sounds like so much fun! Enjoy the celebrations and wedding planning until then, see you in June!

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Courtney and Ryan met while Courtney was working at Griffis Air Force Base and Ryan is in the Air Force. After that interaction they were constantly in communication with each other and Courtney could not stop talking about him. It was clear that something has changed in their lives. Love was amidst! Meeting the two for the first time I just think of the word “smitten”. They have an eternal fondness for each other that is clear as day when they simply look at each other. They understand one another, enjoy each other’s unwavering love, and appreciate a good sense of humor.  My kind of people!

Their wedding had a classic, rustic, charm that was done right! At Hayloft on the Arch rests a beautiful barn amongst fresh hills of green. The venue is amazing as it has a lot of photography spots to work with and the decor in the barn is perfection. After Courtney and Ryan got ready at The Tower at Turning Stone Casino & Resort, we all headed to a small old chapel tucked behind the hill of Hayloft on the Arch. There they had their First Look as bride and groom. And their wedding day officially began!

The weather turned out perfect for their outdoor ceremony right behind the barn. The sun glanced down at us through passing clouds and I loved seeing a lovely breeze flowing through Courtney’s veil as they vowed their love to each other. Courtney became Mrs. Watson and Ryan became Courtney’s husband! The celebrations began! After a relaxing cocktail hour everyone scurried into the barn. The reception started off with some amazing laughs as Courtney’s dad, sister, and Ryan’s brother gave hilarious speeches! It was the best way transition into great food, drinks, and dancing! Entertainment by the wonderful Gary Johnson

Overall, such a beautiful day that I’m so glad I was able to witness and photograph. Courtney and Ryan have quite the journey of a honeymoon. They went to Saratoga Springs to see Brad Paisley, then the Dominican Republic for some R&R, and last but not least, Las Vegas to see Britney Spears! Yes, I said Britney Spears! Courtney is a huge fan and so Ryan insisted they go. Now talk about a great husband! Congratulations to Courtney and Ryan!!

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Venue: Hayloft on the Arch

Makeup Artist & Hair Stylist: Tease & Makeup

Florist: Affections Floral Design & Event Planning

Dress: Phiajames Wedding – David Tutera

Bride’s Shoes: Adrianna Papell

DJ: Gary Johnson

Photography: Janelle Rodriguez Photography

In high school I was blessed to be really happy throughout the years. I had great friends and loved being involved in theater and tennis. Through those times I got to know Jessica who was always intelligent, passionate, and had a stunning singing voice. I remember being in awe of her talents on stage. And it was the most pleasant surprise to hear from her when she got engaged. 

She introduced me to Michael and it all made sense. This was certainly the man she is destined to spend her life with. They fit perfectly like puzzle pieces. Michael is sweet and caring. And because I love basketball so much, I loved the fact that he coaches. Getting to know them as a couple during their engagement session made me realize how when they’re together, nothing could bring them down. They are simply happy together and that kind of love is what makes the world go round.

Their wedding was an amazing trip. I brought my team who happens to be my close friends. So we got there a day early to scout locations and even had time to jump into the hotel pool to play good old Marco Polo, like the adults we are! Location scouting was incredible as I immediately fell in love with Chateau Briand in Long Island, New York. Talk about beautiful lighting, elegance, and great food! After Jessica and Michael got dressed they met for a romantic First Look. I loved seeing Michael’s reaction to seeing his beautiful bride for the first time! Jessica was a stunner for sure! We took photos around the venue, added their rowdy wedding party, and then met with their family in the Monet Studio Room. I can’t tell you how fun it was to see so many familiar faces and laugh about old high school stories.

Jessica and Michael are huge Game of Thrones fans. Their ceremony started off with huge smiles and laughs as the procession began to the Game of Thrones theme music. After a beautiful wedding ceremony Jessica and Michael were not messing around about having a fun reception. Dancing began from the very beginning and intensified through the night. The band came equipped with a drum set and wild saxophone player. And yes, that last photograph is Jessica and Michael taking over the drums and killing it! I am so incredibly happy for Jessica and Michael. I will never forget being a part of your first day as husband and wife. Thank you so much for the opportunity and have fun on your honeymoon to Hawaii, congratulations!!!

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It’s true! I’m married! A lot has been happening in my life and I’m just getting to writing a personal blog about it. For that I apologize! And really, this is just a teaser to my first day as Mrs. Bonagurio. Once I get everything in order, I’ll have the whole story to tell. Our plans have changed immensely for a very happy surprise coming this Winter. All I can say for now is I’ve never felt an experience as powerful as declaring forever love to someone. I’ve witnessed this miracle for over 6 years of photographing weddings but never quite got it until I was the one walking down the isle. Besides the decor, the fancy clothing, and musical choices, I really wanted to understand the importance of a marriage. So as personal as they are, I decided to show our written vows. It’s the best insight as to how David and I intend to approach our life together. This is how we will try to treat each other every single day and yes, we accept off days and mistakes. Imperfections are beautiful too. We believe that our love is indestructible with trust, faith, and communication. So stay tuned for more on our wedding day and until then enjoy the upcoming weddings that I’m photographing!:)

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I met Carly years ago when my photography career was still in its infancy.  At the time, I was focusing on fashion and Carly agreed to be my model. That was more that 5 years ago now! Looking back on those days I can’t help but laugh. So much has changed in Carly’s life, so many incredible things, but what I love is what has never changed. That is her bright spirit and beautiful personality. Her style has always been unique and bold and it was a relief to see that resonate through her wedding day. Justin, is the sweetest man. You meet him and his smile instantly puts you at ease. So it was a joy when Carly introduced me to her soon to be husband. I couldn’t approve more to such a great man! And the icing on the cake? They had the most adorable son, Gabe.

I got to spend some time playing with Gabe the morning of Carly and Justin’s wedding. He showed me every single truck he owns and how they function! What a smart and handsome young man he is! Then I headed to Dibble’s Inn in Vernon, New York to capture a very beautiful wedding ceremony. Outdoors by a peaceful river Carly and Justin declared their love and became husband and wife! We took photos around the property and even explored a new path that the owner made just for photos. It was well worth the effort because I’m in love with the photos there. And if you know me, I’m obsessed with sunset light. We caught tons of it and I especially loved it glowing through Carly’s wild, red tendrils.

The reception was filled with dancing and children running around and playing. We even caught Gabe showing off his air guitar and air saxophone skills! The desserts were a hit and the bar was packed. Every single person there was having a great time celebrating, Mr. and Mrs. Bonaventura! It was a great day, a perfect wedding day. I couldn’t be any happier for these two awesome newlyweds. Congratulations to Carly and Justin!

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