We had already done damage control, it was a little disheartening, but it wasn’t the end of the world. The church was pretty quiet as the fantastic staff at River of Life Church in Dickinson, ND, worked out all the tech before the start of the wedding. That’s when it fell into a giant glob on the floor. The top of Autumn and Jesse’s cake was now upside down on the base of the altar. Now some brides, or mother of the brides, would have freaked out when they opened the cake box, to begin with, and saw it had melted and now resembled the leaning tower of Pisa more than a three-tier wedding cake.
But instead, Nancy and Autumn laughed it off and dug in to get their hands dirty(and tasty) to try and make it look a bit more like a wedding cake. That lightheartedness was an absolute joy to be around that day. When Nancy had initially contacted me to photograph Autumn and Jesse’s wedding, the date was set for May. I woke up to an email in early December that the date and location were changing. So instead of a spring morning wedding in the tiny town of Wildrose, I drove down to Dickinson, ND, on New Year’s Day to scout out locations for their now virtual wedding on January 2nd.
Now it’s hard to believe as a wedding photographer, it took until 2021 to photograph my first virtual wedding, but it’s true! It was so wonderful and intimate, just Autumn, Jesse, Autumn’s parents Randy and Nancy, and Autumn’s brother Hunter who was also the best man. Autumn’s grandpa officiated the wedding over zoom in Michigan. The wedding was held and recorded at noon and aired on youtube at 5 pm. Autumn, Jesse, my sister Tayla, and I got to spend the afternoon roaming around Dickinson taking portraits.
We all loved taking images by The Brew, my favorite spot to study when I was in college at DSU. The vines created this beautiful texture, and the fact that it was once a church and still very much looks like a church on the outside was beautiful! We also hit up the NDSU research gardens, where we also found beauty even in dormancy. Autumn will be graduating this spring. Jesse is a health and physical education teacher in Bowman; the pair will be settling there once Autumn graduates.
There may not have been many people surrounding them on their wedding day, but there was a lot of love. I am so honored to have been part of this beautiful and unseasonably warm day. Autumn, Jesse, congratulations!