About a month ago my dear friend Sarah from Sincerely Pete
and Wanderlust Wed Co,
were chatting over dinner about an upcoming destination wedding she was the planner for in Puerto Rico. Immediately my heart skipped a beat when she said she was still searching for an assistant for this wedding. I was thrilled she asked me if I’d be available to go with her and be her assistant for the weekend, and of course I quickly agreed.
It wasn’t just going to help her in any way I could but it was also the chance to go home for a few days, see family, eat delicious food and visit my little island after hurricane Maria. Being a photographer I have done destination weddings, and being in the industry, I work with amazing planners. However, to see the amount of focus, commitment and work it takes for a planner to make it all come together really puts so much into perspective and truly gives me even a greater appreciation for wedding planners. We see everything completed and ready to be photographed beautifully, but this was different, I was able to see it before it gets to the photographer and the couple see’s the final dream come true and it was so worth it.
From the moment I arrived it was ‘game on’…from the rehearsal at the hotel, to driving around the island searching for last minute details, to spending our Friday night putting final touches on the details in the hotel room. Sarah is amazing to watch making it all happen and juggle everything with such grace and focus on her clients.
On the wedding day we grabbed breakfast, picked up food for the wedding party and headed to Hacienda Siesta Alegre
in Rio Grande. This hacienda is breathtaking. The views, all around surrounded by the natural beauty of Puerto Rico and the perfect backdrop for this wedding.
The work really began supporting Sarah as she made her clients dreams come true. Every flower, every set up, light, candle, everything was planned and executed to the detail. During all the set up we dealt with bursts of 20-mph winds and on and off island rains. Every single question I had, she had an answer, a solution and an execution plan. I seriously don’t know how planners keep it all straight. Once the table was set and everything in it’s place what a wonderful feeling to step back, take a deep breath and see it all come together, seeing the couples eyes light up when they saw their venue look exactly as they had dreamed – made all the work so worthwhile.
The final farm table layout was stunning!
After a quick wardrobe change – the real moments began, where I could take a step back without a camera in my hand and take it all in. To see every moment in front of me, all the moments photographers strive to capture happening so smoothly. It was like watching a dance occur, everything came together and in perfect unison.
I wouldn’t trade this experience an I know it will stay with me for a long time, plus I met some amazing new people, and got to show them around Old San Juan, try fresh coconuts on the beach and explore the beauty of the island.
Sarah, thank you for asking me and trusting me to be your assistant for this wedding! I’m excited to see the professional images captured by Finn Lively Photography
Oh, and to all couples…. you definitely need a wedding planner!
Sarah working her magic and final touches!
Love the Hacienda Roosters!
And playing tourists if for even a few hours!