Stephanie / Rawlings Conservatory, Baltimore

I was lucky enough to photograph Stephanie this past week at Rawlings Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Baltimore! We explored the historic grounds together and found ourselves in awe of the incredible plants and flowers the Conservatory is home to. These pictures seek to document some of that beauty, and feature one of the most down-to-earth, beautiful people I know.

Sirenetta

Every year for as long as I can remember, my parents have packed all eight of us into the family twelve-seater with all the things six restless, rambunctious kids could need for a week and trundled us off to the Outer Banks in North Carolina. For eleven of those years, we have stayed in a house called Sirenetta, and this year I finally got to bring my fiance, Ryan, back to what is easily my favorite place in the world. Over time the vacation has gotten a little bit bigger and a little bit better with the addition of sons/brothers-in-law, and it’s so cool to show them around “our house” and introduce all the Cruz family traditions we’ve created over the years.

I usually bring my camera everywhere with me, but this past week I specifically left it behind pretty often to force myself to just be present and enjoy the time instead of feeling like I had to document every experience. As a result I only have a few pictures to share, but it was so good to release myself from that pressure and simply be here with the people I love!

Marc + Nicole / Philly Engagement

It was so fun and such an honor to photograph this sweet, spontaneous engagement session this past June! Both Marc and Nicole are from Philadelphia, so it only seemed right to roadtrip up from Baltimore and document their love in the city they call home. Nicole found the most gorgeous, princess-inspired skirt on Amazon and was seriously turning heads everywhere we went. These two have been together for ten years and really are each other’s best friend. Marc chose to propose surrounded by family at Nicole’s sister’s house - only Nicole didn’t know it. He popped the question in the backyard on a warm August night, and after she said yes, both their families came bursting out of the screened-in porch to surprise her and celebrate!

During our time in Philly, we explored Old City Philadelphia, the Art Museum, City Hall, Love Park, and Elfreth’s Alley before ending the trip back where Marc proposed at Nicole’s sister’s house. I couldn’t be happier for these two friends of mine and am so excited to see the adventures life has in store for them.