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Cape May Elopement | Alex + Kelly | Stay Lokal

  I recently came across a method of farming called the slash and burn, whereby you cut down the trees on a plot of land then set fire to the remaining foliage to provide nutrients to the soil for the newer food crops. Kelly + Alex’s Cape May elopement which began at Stay Lokal was the beginning of my beauty from ashes. It’s no secret that the wedding/events world took a major hit due to COVID 19, and even now there’s much to be sad about, many have lost loved ones, businesses are going out of commission and there’s great division in our world. But we’ve also seen the beauty of humanity & community like never before. And I hope that you can find inspiration from this post and believe that there’s much to look forward to. Alex + Kelly, have been a bright lamp post on the road of my journey. I still remember tearing up when Kelly was reading her vows to Alex, it was a reinvigorating moment that reminded of the very great POWER OF LOVE. And it confirmed my convictions that LOVE IS NOT CANCELLED. So remember no matter how hot the flames are, I believe […]

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Micro Wedding inspiration – Hill Physick Philadelphia – Featured in Modern Luxury Magazine

This was one of the most creative shoots I worked on in 2019 and interestingly enough I think now provides lots of inspiration for an intimate micro wedding. It was a dream to have this published in Modern Luxury weddings Magazine.   The whimsical 18th century garden of Hill-Physick caught the eye of the team at Garces Events, who partnered with Kate Boyle—event designer at Sara Rea Design. “I thought it would be perfect for two busy doctors who love the history, want something stunning but also a high-end intimate wedding. Our idea began there, and we built an amazing team to create a luxe shoot,” says Boyle. The four-story brick house, decorated with beautiful, French-influenced neoclassical furnishings, is reflective of the time period but also provides a stunning backdrop for modern couples—who can transition from a cocktail reception in the parlor to dinner in the garden through floor-to-ceiling windows (that also serve as doors). “The garden is a magical space that we believe is a hidden gem in Philadelphia,” says Boyle. Claudia Harmon, owner of Jollifier Floral Design, styled the space with intentional blooms such as herbs with medicinal properties like mountain mint and lavender and anatomical oddities like […]

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Cedar Lakes Estates Proposal | New York | Keith + Kaitlyn

As I hid away in the pines overlooking the Amphitheatre at Cedar Lakes Estates, watching these two young summer lovers, head over heels for each other with the reflected light from the lake, glistening in the background, I was ravished by their love. The wind, the pines and the birds all sang in anticipation for that moment when Keith would get on one knee and ask Kaitlyn to spend the rest of his life with her. Even the sun graced us with her presence and sparkle that serene evening. It was an honor to spend my birthday with these two. Your love reminds me of summer Cherry Lips and raspberry wine, Jasmine flowers on climbing vines, Palm leaves rustling in the sunshine, Wishing we could slow downtime. Christy Ann Martine  

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5 reasons Cedar Lakes Estates is THE dream glamping NY wedding venue

From the drive up to Cedar Lakes Estate through the Hudson Valley, to the mountain top overlooking the Shawangunk Mountains, Cedar Lakes Estate is indeed “one perfectly peaceful lakefront escape combining culinary adventure with rustic radiance.” After being fortunate enough to photograph a few beautiful weddings at this luxury estate venue, I just had to create this shortlist of 5 Reasons why I think Cedar Lakes Estates is THE dream glamping wedding venue In New York.   Cedar Lakes Estates An Unforgettable glamping experience; I still remember those long late-night bonfire conversations with friends, oh, the sticky s’ mores and remnant smell of smoke on my clothes. These are some of my favorite memories and Cedar lakes Estate, once a 1920’s summer camp, evokes all the feelings of nostalgia. I can only imagine what a weekend wedding with family and friends at cedar lakes would feel like. It would be an adventurous experience, comprising of mountain top yoga, team competitions, an outdoor movie night, and deep personal bonfire chats. It would be an experience of a lifetime.   Below are images of what a rehearsal dinner could look like at the pavilion     Say “I do” with a view […]

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Cairnwood Estate Wedding | Black Gatsby Themed Wedding | Danielle + Adam
March 24, 2020 by Afrik Armando in Stories, Weddings 0 Comments

A fundamental part of every wedding I shoot is understanding the personality of my couples; that is the things which get them excited, their passions, dreams, and aspirations? The purpose of this is simple, photographing a wedding is like doing a tango dance with the couple, to get the best, we learn to sway to the tune of their story. My job is to create that space where they can be free to be who they really are. When I first met Danielle & Adam in person, I quickly learned how dear black culture was to them. For this reason, we related on so many levels, from talking about the school systems to industry representation, to give you an idea of how deep we went, I think that first meeting lasted for about 4 hours. So going into their wedding with this in mind, I sought to represent the essence of their story. Two working professionals passionate about empowering their communities and creating opportunities for others. I think what stood out to me most was when Danielle brought in paintings to cover the ones present during the cocktail hour and reception. The art was by Gilbert Young, a black artist […]

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A Benjamin Franklin Officiated wedding | Ridgeland Mansion | Susie + Chris
March 11, 2020 by Afrik Armando in Stories, Weddings 0 Comments

FEATURED ON PHILADELPHIA WEDDING MAGAZINE Weddings come in all shapes and sizes but I don’t think I’ll be forgetting Susie + Chris’ wedding anytime soon. The more I grow in the wedding world, the more I’m learning about the things which matter most. At the end of the day, it’s not just the decor, the flowers or venue as amazing as these things might be, these are just tools to enhance the story & guest experience. When all is said and done, the heartbeat of everything is purely the personality of the couple. This is one of the main reasons Susie + Chris’ wedding meant a lot to me. Not only were they extremely kind and generous, but I couldn’t hold back my tears as I heard all the lovely stories shared about these two, from their friends & loved ones. It’s amazing cause sometimes we don’t realize how much impact we have on the lives of others. There’s so much more I could tell you about them, but I’ll let you read their story on this Philly Magazine article published for their wedding. It was truly an honor to serve them and a special thanks to all the amazing […]

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Junebug Featured Earthy New York Wedding | Ilya + Victoria
February 26, 2020 by Afrik Armando in Stories, Weddings 0 Comments

  One of the reasons I find this wedding peculiar is because it epitomizes the power of the community. It’s always a great thing when you could hire a team of creative vendors to work on your special day and make your vision come true, but when it came to Ilya and Victoria’s wedding, they choose a different route. They wanted their wedding to feel like a happy family gathering and that’s exactly what it was. The florals, dessert, stationary and even the furniture, were all carefully handcrafted by members of their church community.   And after their ceremony, they didn’t go the route of having a traditional reception program but rather opted for a Laissez-faire occasion. Wherein people were free to do whatever they wanted. Lawn games, blowing bubbles and heartfelt patio chats were the highlight of the evening. It really felt amazing to watch a community bond together over one couple’s wedding. Thank you Ilya & Victoria for letting me share your most special day with you. I’m also beyond grateful to JuneBug Weddings for featuring this story on their blog. Event Planning – GLDN Soul Events Wedding Venue – Best View Barn Catering – Zeina’s Cafe Cake – Serendipity Cakes Stationery […]

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A closer look into the art of floral design
January 21, 2020 by Afrik Armando in Stories, Weddings 0 Comments

When I think about some of the songs which have had the most impact in my life, Amanda Cook’s “Wonder” is somewhere at the top of that list. Her lyrics “May we never lose our wonder…” remind me to not solely be a professional but serve with passion and soul. I’m bringing this up because today after having a conversation with Becky the owner of Ram florals, the flames of that wonder were fanned. And below are just a few excerpts from our conversation. Understanding the difference between a designer and producer I’m sure most of us know who the artist Picasso is, now, wouldn’t it be odd if you wanted him to paint something special for you but instead of giving him creative control, you gave him a brush & told him exactly how and what to paint? Therein lies the key difference between a floral designer and a floral producer. While one goes above and beyond to create something very specific to who you are as a couple, the other focuses on a replication formula. So clarity is paramount because with this in mind, you can decide who and what you want. 3 things to be mindful of; […]

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Favorite wedding photo moments of 2019

I’ll never forget that warm summer night in the month of August when overwhelmed with tears joy I could hardly believe that I was painting my own space. I know it wasn’t grand & perhaps to some even trivial but considering that I started from nothing I felt pretty darn GRATEFUL. 2019 was one of those years which truly exceeded my wildest expectations. Not only did we grow in leaps & bounds, but we also got to work with some of the most amazing creatives on the most spectacular projects. So for all of this I’ve got to say THANK YOU. Thank you for spreading the word, thank you for all the trust and for all the joy you brought to my life. Below are just a few of my favorite moments from 2019, but if you’re reading this and we worked together last year? I want you to know that considering we only live once and have limited time on earth I sincerely treasure the time we got to spend together. So enjoy the highlight and feel free to share with your friends. Some favorite moments from 2019 In 2019, flat lays were a big thing, a photo dedicated […]

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Cageless Birds 2 | Kat + Serge | After wedding Shoot
October 17, 2019 by Afrik Armando in Stories, Weddings 1 Comment

The best phrase I can use to describe this shoot is ” Lost in Loveland”. Firstly, I can’t thank Kat & Serge enough, not only did they agree to do a second-day shoot, they also agreed to wake up at 5 am in the morning to catch the golden hour. And I tell you magic happened that morning. Isn’t this a lot like life, when you do crazy things and take bold steps the universe always beautifully responds in your favor. When I took a second look at these photos after our shoot, I was lost in Loveland, it’s one thing to see them on your camera screen and another thing to see them on a large computer screen. And a little tip for using smoke bombs; try waiting for angular lighting (usually in the morning or towards the evening) this creates a very dramatic scene especially if you use it in a woodsy area, you actually get to see the rays of light going through the smoke. Thanks a million for reading this far and please comment below so I can know you stopped by :). You’re amazing Kat & SergeCore Creek Park

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