New York I love you. I dream in color palettes.

New York seems to be popping up everywhere.  This week my mother in law is in town from Orange Country, New York.  Last week Maryanne was in Sag Harbor New York.  Last night the new clients I met were from New York etc etc.  I guess you can say New York is on my mind.  Here are some colors that I was drawn to when I was in the city last month.  As always I love street scenes and checking out the latest art exhibit.  I had the chance to finally visit Alana's new store ANGL which was even more beautiful in person.  Alana and I went to MOMA and had drinks with my sweet friend Katie.  If I could click my hills 3 times I'd be looking at some art with those babes right now.  I have to share that my friend Taylor had the best instagram post explaining how she dreams in color palettes.  I've never had someone explain that habit of mine before.  It was so refreshing and made me want to share a thread of a color palette I followed and share it with you.

Detroit Wedding : Victoria and Travis

Hello friends,

As always I'm so thrilled to be sharing one of our weddings with you. You met Victoria and Travis with the Detroit Engagement blog post.  And just a couple days later I photographed their wedding.  It was so cool to meet their family and friends.  A few people came up to me and told me which of their engagement photos were their favorite and I loved the midwestern hospitality.  There were so many beautiful moments I don't even know where to start.  Victoria and Travis are both so loved by their friends and family that it was just moment after moment.  Since Detroit is so far north the sun stayed out while everyone was on the dance floor.  I wasn't expecting the golden hour to last so long.  My awesome local 2nd shooter Amanda Junae was so awesome to work with and sported a 7 month baby bump and is such a girl boss.  She was my hero that day.  I'm just sitting here smiling and trying to think of what to say but I'll just have to say it in images.  There aren't words for how Victoria lights up when she sees Travis or how hope and beauty floated around the room.  I love that these two found each other.

Say you, say me say it together : Detroit

I went to the Motown Museum in Detroit on what turned out to be Juneteenth.  How serendipitous. Detroit plays an important role in our country coming together.  I was overwhelmed to learn what an impact a record company could have. During a time of great racial tension, Motown’s positive message and new sound gave blacks and whites a way to come together.  I love that in a time of political strife they used music that was aspirational to build common ground.

They showed us concert footage of the 60’s and explained how concert halls used to be segregated.  Even when they weren’t often at the start of the concert there would be whites on one side and blacks on the other. Then once the concert got going the crowd would mix, dance together and come together.  It felt like a tale of musical revolution. Believe it or not Martha of Martha and the Vandellas joined our tour! How epic is that! We heard Martha sing a few songs on the documentary. She also let us know the ones she sang back up on too.  She’s just as gorgeous now as she was in the 60’s.

(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave (1963)

Dancing In The Street (1964)

Along with the Vandella’s - the Supremes, the Temptations, the Four Tops, Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder released more than 180 No. 1 hits worldwide.

Also in 1963 Dr Martin Luther King, Jr. led more than 125,000 people down Woodward ave in Detroit for a civil rights march.  This is where he first delivered the “I have a dream” speech. Which was recorded on the Gordy label of Motown records.  

Abdul Fakir of the Four Tops, known as “Duke,” said in a 2009 interview “We looked at Martin Luther King and we thought, he’s doing the same thing on foot that we’re doing on the radio,” “I like to think that we were softening the blow for him a little bit.”

There are so many ways for our country to come together and in 2018 we need to.  I love voting and marching but this trip made me wonder what are some ways we never even thought of?  What beautiful artistic ways can help us to come together?

I love the song Say you, Say me by Lionel Richie

Say you, say me say it for always

That's the way it should be

Say you, say me say it together

Naturally

When I hear this song I think

Say yes to you, Say yes to me

We are one.  We are each other.  When I say you, I’m saying me.  

So let’s see that we are all Americans from a great country of immigrants.  Let’s see ourselves in people seeking political asylum. Let’s know that we would never want to have our children taken from us.  Let’s know that our families came from other countries to seek better opportunities. My family came from Norway and Ireland on the boat.  I see myself in these brave people trying to make a better life for themselves. Just like I see myself in our amazing clients who are brave enough to stand in front of their friends and family and pledge their love and hope to each other in a message of peace.  

With love and peace,

Suzanne, Mike, Morgan and the Wanderers

Montauk Yacht Club for Stephanie and Ryan

You never have to ask me twice to go to New York.  I jump at any opportunity but this was extra special.  I love when past clients recommend us and I was especially honored when Ashley recommended us to her cousin Stephanie.  I love the Anton's and was so stoked to get to photograph this wedding.  Stephanie and Ryan were so laid back and cool from the get go.  I knew we were a great fit.  We hung out while they were visiting family in San Diego and went over all the details which were mostly how awesome, in love, relaxed they are and that Ryan is a heck of a fisherman.  It was a breezy year and then finally I was in Montauk at the rehearsal dinner and it was a flurry of hugs.  Lauren - Stephanie's amazing friend gave me the low down of who everyone was and then gave the world's best speech.  I love you Lauren.  I also wanted to share one of my instagram posts right after the wedding.  It's impossible to explain how wonderful being a part of Stephanie and Ryans weekend was but I gave it a shot in my usual round a bout way.  

Behind those eyes is a firecracker. 
It's easy to fall in love with photography. 
It's harder to run a business. 
I know so many people who fall in love with the craft of photography and the beauty of weddings. 
But what happens next?
How do you find clients?
How do you find the right clients?
These are questions every photographer must find an answer too.
Some how for the last 15 years we have managed to find the right clients. 
We've tried dozens of ways and had our share of successes and failures. 
I imagine most of our success comes down to loving our clients and being wildly grateful for them.
If you love someone it's so easy to see their inner beauty. It's so simple to have compassion for them and anticipate what they might need during the day. If you love someone you cheer them on and wish them every happiness. If you love someone you are on their team and feel grateful to be a part of it all. 
I loved getting to travel into Stephanie's life. I love how open she was and how loving her friends and family are. You might look at this image and think what a beautiful woman. But I look at it and think -She is so loved and cherished. She means the world to everyone in the reception and some that couldn't be there. I know what it's like to love someone and I could feel everyone pouring their love in Stephanie. She is so worthy of it. 
That's the story I was trying to tell. If you were there you would have laughed and cried and been a little in awe of this firecracker . You wouldn't have just seen a beautiful woman you would have seen so much more behind those eyes. 
I'm so grateful to her cousin Ashley for referring me and letting me get to know her family more. 
I'm always so aware that not everyone has a career that is so full of moments that break their hearts open and allow them to live an artist life.
I look at this image and all I see is love. #stephanieisababe 

Detroit engagement with Victoria and Travis

Victoria and I met in an online class Flow With Intention Online.  Shout out to #fwio2018 When she reached out to me looking for a wedding photographer I nearly lost my mind.  I was so stoked to get to meet this high vibe lady and get to share in her wedding day yay!  She and Travis met less than 7 months ago and tomorrow is their wedding day.  I would have married Mike month 4.  So I know what it’s like to have a knowing about someone.  It’s beautiful and these two are beautiful.  They also practiced their first dance during our session.  It was the first time they had danced together.  I can’t believe I was able to capture their first dance.  The air felt electric.  Victoria has an amazing smile that draws you in - in an incredible way but then her face softens when she looks and Travis and I can tell she’s feeling how extraordinary he is and somehow she looks even more beautiful.  Being a portrait photographer is a powerful way to get to know someone.  I can look, I have full permission to observe and watch the play of emotions on their face and know a little bit of what it is for them to love each other.   And to top it off they showed Detroit to me for the first time.  Believe me - Detroit is for photographers!

Maui Destination Wedding : Taylor and Mike

There is no chance I can explain how fun this weekend was.  Seriously zero.  I knew Mike and Taylor would be the coolest.  From the first time I met Taylor, I knew I wanted to be around her and share in her and Mike's epic day.  These two adventurers were laid back and had awesome priorities.  From the welcome party to the sunset cruise to the wedding day - I had a smile on my face.  Taylor and Mike told me they were really close with their families.  It is one thing to hear that and a whole other thing to witness it.  So much love.  Seriously, all the love.  This blog post could have been twice as long.  It's already way to long, but so much love and beauty happened it's hard not to make the world's longest run on sentence.  It's been hard since my family moved away.  Sometimes you get exactly what you need.  After IVF didn't work out once again, I really needed to fill myself up emotionally.  A week in Maui with Morgan, Laurie's family and all the people surrounding Taylor filled me up with everything I needed.  I felt so grateful.  I'm so incredibly grateful to Laurie from the Creative Clique for being my friend, referring me to these two beauties, and making incredible invites for me to photograph.

I can't even try with words but here is my love letter to Taylor and Mike.  

taking you to prague

Sometimes when I’m traveling I wish I could bring you all along.  I want to show you every quiet corner I see and every ray of light.  This “sometimes” happens so often that I forget to show you even just a slice of a month photographing. 

So for today here is a slice. 7 frames of Prague. A mini adventure inside of a grand one. Believe me when I tell you, I wish you were here.

Xoxo suzanne

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Dreaming of Greece

Hi wanderers, 

I am Lea and am currently part of the wonderful She Wanders team as an intern. Getting this internship opportunity at She Wanders meant the world to me. I have been joining Suzanne on her journey for a month today. I have learned so incredibly much and have grown as a person as well as a photographer. The incredibly positive and loving spirit of the photos and she wanders blog that attracted me in the first place is being lived by Suzanne in every moment. I believe this is the true secret to the amazing work Suzanne creates (next to her experience and professionalism of course).

I am a current photography student and have a great love for travelling, discovering and emerging in foreign cultures. As such I was thrilled at the opportunity to go through Suzanne’s photos of her Europe adventures and would like to share my favorites with you. Don’t they just make you want to go travel? I definitely fell in love with Greece through these photos.

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Ode to a Violin in California by Pablo Neruda

A rainy night in San Diego is rare.  Sometimes I am so struck by the water on my windshield and I often feel like I'm in a painting.  I sometimes feel transported to the streets of Paris and think of Renoir but last night it was something else.  It felt more modern and I loved every red light and the parking lot that was the I8.  It felt a little like Pablo Neruda or maybe even Tom Waits. Maybe I was just feeling electric because I got a phone call from the Dog rescue that we could take Jake home.  Either way traffic and I had a love affair last night.  Thanks San Diego.

I sought that violin in the night.
I searched street by pitch-black street,
went house by weathered house,
star by star.
It faded
and fell silent
then suddenly surged,
. . . . . . . . . . .a flare
in the brackish night.
It was a pattern of incendiary sound,
a spiral of musical contours,
and I went on searching
street by street
for the dark violin’s
lifeline,
the source submerged in silence.
Finally, there
he was,
at the entrance to a bar:
a man and his
. . . . . .hungry violin.

Ode to a Violin in California by Pablo Neruda

The Town

The last time I entered a photo contest I was still living I my hometown and probably 19.  It was at the local community college and I won first place for a black and white street scene taken from the Georges Pompidou in Paris.  I cut out two shapes of people and blocked the light from the enlarger from hitting the print in that area.  I've always been interested in this idea of connectiveness.  I guess somethings never change.  All these years later in still concerned with the idea of people finding common ground no matter where they are from.

I recently decided to spread my wings a little and try new things again.  

Here's my entry into The Magnum Photography Contest

Xoxo Suzanne

The Town

This body of work is about the idea of a town that is created in many places but exists in one body of work.  I’m interested in what we can have in common.  Maybe our sameness can expand our compassion.  I’d like to change the idea that our identity is based on us versus them.  That countries need borders and walls to separate us.

Our beginnings and endings, trials and errors, questions of identity and worth, dreams and risks can take place on any street.  Beauty is in the door frame we walk by without a second glance, the public art that questions gender or our most basic assumptions, in the buttons you push to get entrance/acceptance.  This is my collection of images and wishes that seeing beauty in a space might help others to see beauty in each other.  I hope that each image reminds you of something.  Maybe your hometown or somewhere you’ve visited.  I am looking for the familiar in far away places.