Every year we want to celebrate the artistry and talent of so many of our photographers. We select our top photos of the year. These photos have a special “it-factor” above the rest. We say that they are so special that we can easily imagine them being in a magazine. It is a higher standard and frankly a challenge for us to eliminate so many and select so few. Those first nine photos were in random order. All stunning in their own unique way. Theses last three…..are our top three choices. What a tough decision it was.
Let the unveiling begin.
Third Best Picture of 2022 By Y Studio Photography
What a magazine worthy photo this is; the backdrop, the beautiful bride in her gown with her stunning bouquet in hand, and kiss for a large white horse! This shot rose above the others in the gallery partly because of this sweet kiss. I guess you know which brides are “all in” on a shot and who plays it safe. This bride left no opportunity behind. Finny, our big ole draft horse, was very cooperative and why not? Some of these animal photos can look forced or the horses are nervous enough that they don’t stand still or maybe they have their ears leaning back, etc. Somehow the stars aligned, the bride had a connection with Finny, and the photographer captured the moment of a sweet kiss. A world of girls would kill for this moment. I’m glad that Jacqueline got hers!
Part of what makes this an amazing photograph is a decison that the bride made months before this picture was taken; to have her bouquets full of many colors, textures, and varieties. I will say that most of these were actually farm raised right here on-site! The beautiful mix of flowers certainly sets off this photo with bridal and bridesmaids bouquets surrounding the bride’s face in a stunning effect. The bride’s smile, hair and hair florals, and jewelry complete the look!
Photo: Honeyroot Photography
The sunset photos are typically amazing, in part, because of the softeness that comes with golden hour. This photo has a bit more intensity to it because the sun has not actually set yet. It gives it a spotlight effect. Beyond the interesting light effect is that we have a stunning bride with her military husband holding onto her. What’s not to love about a beautiful bride in the arms of a man in uniform?
Photo: C C Photography
There are many subtle effects on this photograph that got it selected. First, the setting is in the old farmhouse with those shiplap walls, extra large baseboards, and vintage window. This adds the interesting backdrop. You can even see through the window and the old Milkhouse at least makes for another unique background. Secondly, the photographer’s use of a slight antiquing lens has helped it to create this subtle vintage vibe to the photo. The bride who is very beautiful has both a whimsical headcrown and bouquet that completes the look. Having the focal point (here – the bride) looking away from the camera, gives it another artistic flair.
Photo Credit: Abigail George Photography
This photo is a perfect example that a “magazine worthy photo” doesn’t have to be elaborate or full of bells and whistles. Here you have a sweet couple apparently just enjoying this quiet moment on wedding day as they sit at our bonfire pit area. The background of the photo doesn’t even show the bonfire pit, but it does show our very unique farm windmill blade. This windmill blade is actually a family heirloom from Michigan. It does add a bit of wow to the photo. Beyond that, this is just a very romantic capturing of what feels like a private moment between the newlyweds. We all agreed that this photo had an “it” factor and even struggled with exactly the why. I think this is one of those photos that just showcases the couple’s loving emotions on camera.
Photo Credit: Cole Grayson
We certainly love our treehouse but so does everybody else, it seems. Having this honeymoon cottage as a backdrop for a bride and groom just instantly creates a romantic vibe to this photo. The bride and groom embracing on the rock pathway; her bridal gown train was extended for full effect; and her bouquet awaiting patiently as her foot all sets the stage wonderfully. This photo was taken at a perfect time of day to get a soft hue to the photograph while letting the light playing off the trees in the backdrop seemingly to highly each leaf and branch. The cafe lights being on adds great touch too. This photographer could be used to advertise anything from VRBO to deoderant to life insurance and more.
Photo Credit: Authentic Collective
We are always drawn to our sunset photos. As in this photo, the low light plays on everything it touches and that is true even with each blade of grass in the hayfield. Here the bride and groom walk hand in hand into their new begining. Bride’s dress shows very specifically white which allows the contract with the other colors. It’s what we are all about. With out mountain in the background, it just impressed us all.
Photo Credit: Josh Hart
No faces but still this is an amazing photo. The kilt is certainly a unique asset to this but with the bride wearing a matching plaid scarf and denim jacket make it quite unique. Great balance on both ends the groom’s “sporran” (belted pouch used to store coins) and with the beautiful and colorful bouquet on the other.
Photo Credit: Abigail George Photography
There seems to always be a goat picture in our Best of series, and why not? Our goats are a bid deal here whether as eye candy or as entertainment for our guests. Some of our brides want to schedule their very own goat photo and this couple was determined to be engulfed with goats – and they were. You have to admit, this is a one-of-a-kind photo!
Photo Credit: Christian Bull Photography
Two of these pasture shots where the bride and groom are casually out among the animals demand that I give added information. Part of their appeal is that it seems somewhat out of place like a bride and groom standing on a mountain peak or beside a waterfall. It is unusual but it works. These shots are all suppose to look very non-chalant. The back story is always “how many handlers does it take to achieve these photos?” and the answer is always “many.” First, these are pastures with animals so you have to watch where you step which is more of a challenge with a long delicate wedding gown and train. Next, these are overtly affectionate animals that we own and it was a feat just to keep the goats from getting on her train or standing on two legs to sniff the boutonniere or for Farmer, our Great Pyrenees dog to get in their facee to just say “hi!” Even the horses wanted in on the attention. Having one horse approaching you is doable, but what about two or three at the same time plus a herd of goats? In the midst of that, the photographer is hoping that the bride and groom can look casual, then kiss, no just embrace! It would’ve been an amusing and likely popular video if someone had been taking all of the behind the scenes maneuvering that this photo required. Me and our staff were the animal handlers trying to spook off our goats while not spooking off the horses. Then the photographers are clicking away trying to get their angles correct so to get the right lighting and backdrop. I’m making horse noises so that Spirit, the paint in the foreground, will actually look up with his ears forward while not being too provacative to encourage either horse to move. So, though I will certainly give a loud “kudos” to the photographer for her talent in capturing this shot and for the guts and willingness to venture out for it, but I will say that the HPF staff earned a bonus for helping to facilitate it. The production of a magazine photo is ten or twenty fold more than what we accomplished that day but still this photographer was able to produce an amazing picture all the same.
Photo Credit: Fearless and Brave Photography