Category: Engagements | View All Posts
Ryan + Kristen

Ryan + Kristen

Detroit Engagement Photos
May 14, 2015
Detroit engagement photography around the city provided by Kellie Saunders, a top Detroit wedding and engagement photographer. Kristen and Ryan are leaving Detroit soon. Now don't worry, it's not a sad move, it's a very good thing. Kristen is beginning her life as a Doctor in Houston and Ryan snagged a great engineering job there as well. When they hired me as their wedding photographer, they stressed how important it is to them to capture their love for each other along with their love for their city. They live right dab smack downtown and before they started packing up their lives for Houston, they spent an afternoon with me in the city that they love. We had a few hiccups and when I say a few - I mean a ton. You see, Detroit wedding and engagement photography isn't always easy. This spring and summer the entire city is pretty much under construction. Woodward is torn up for the rail project and orange barrels are everywhere else in the city. The beautiful grass that I so love in front of the old train station has been cut down to nothing and the Town Pump vinery on the front of the building is covered with scaffolding. To top it off, at the time of their session Belle Isle was being set up for the Grand Prix so there were grandstands and barrels everywhere! What started out as a one hour session turned into a four hour tour of the city. I have to tell you though, I had the absolute BEST time with these two! When I think of a couple who can roll with the punches I am thinking of Kristen and Ryan. It didn't matter how many orange barrels we ran into or how many locations were baracaded off - they just smiled and said - oh well - let's just have fun! And you know what - that's what we did. We ended up still hitting the main spots - but we just took a different view photographically speaking. I still shot awhere I normally do - but because of the obstacles I was forced to really think about the light and think about the connection between Kristen and Ryan. Because of that I think we were able to get a bit more artistic than I usually have time for. The construction slowed us down in a good way! Join me in congratulating Kristen and Ryan on their engagement and wishing them safe travels to Houston. I am so excited for their wedding next year!
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Payton + Janiris

Payton + Janiris

Birmingham Engagement Pictures
Jun 21, 2018
Engagement Pictures in Birmingham with Payton and Janiris were taken by Kellie Saunders, a Birmingham, Michigan wedding photographer. Okay I can't tell a lie here, in all the years I've been in business, I've probably never laughed so much during an engagement session as I did with Payton and Janiris. I admit that I sometimes bust out in song while working with couples (yes I sing to my people), but for some reason I just couldn't stop singing on the day I photographed Payton and Janiris. They were so welcoming, down to earth and lively that I couldn't help myself. When I started singing Payton actually cheered me on! Honestly, as silly as it sounds, it was just good old fashioned fun and it helped create authentic laughter and energy between the two of them and soften the photography process. We photographed at some of my favorite spots in Birmingham. If you are looking for some Metro Detroit engagement picture location ideas Birmingham is a great option. There are plenty of beautiful local parks that are quiet with soft light and gentle foot traffic. In addition to that the downtown area is really fun and lends a hand to some great opportunities for a different look. I really enjoyed getting to know Patyon and Janiris during their engagement session and I can't wait for their August wedding at the Madison Building in Detroit. It is going to be simply amazing with two lovely people, inside and out!!!
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Ann Arbor Peony Garden

Ann Arbor Peony Garden

Lauren + Adam | Arb Engagement Pictures
Jun 20, 2018
Engagement Pictures at Nichols Arboretum Peony Garden in Ann Arbor with Lauren and Adam were taken by Kellie Saunders, a Birmingham, Michigan wedding photographer. Peonies only bloom for a short time and there is no better place to celebrate their beauty than Ann Arbor's Nichol's Arboretum Peony Garden. There are many different varieties of this special flower at the gardens and they are lovingly cared for by expert master gardeners. People come from all over to see the blooms and their lovely splendor. Photography is welcome, but to catch these sessions, it's not for the faint of heart. You have to battle weather changes and be very flexible. These delicate flowers bloom for such a short time and because the success of a peony session is really weather dependent (in my opinion that is), I've found more often than not, that we have to move dates quite often when planning. Luckily Adam and Lauren were fantastic, fun, flexible and up for the challenge! We ended up hitting the garden on one of the very last days before the flowers lost their blooms but we still made it work and wow - what an amazing session we had. I had so much fun working with Lauren and Adam and getting to know them. I don't think we stopped laughing the entire time, as you can see from some of the images below. I am so excited for their upcoming wedding!!! Here are a few of my favorites from their engagement session at the Arb. Want a session like this one? Because of the short window of the delicate blooms, I can only book one or two sessions like this each year. These are only available to current wedding clients on a first come basis and book about one to two years in advance.
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JESSICA + ANTUAN

JESSICA + ANTUAN

SPRING ENGAGEMENT PICTURES
Jan 29, 2018
Michigan Engagement Pictures with Jessica and Antuan taken by Kellie Saunders, a leading Detroit wedding photographer. I'm going to keep it real here and just tell it like it is. Oh my gosh how much I loved working with Jessica and Antuan! They are a brilliant couple and so perfect for each other. I'm almost lost for words. At the time of this blog post I've actually already photographed their wedding, so I have so much more to say about them as a couple, as I've spent an incredible amount of time with them, but I want to keep this post on point and just regarding their engagement session. It's hard though to keep my excitement in check, because I LOVED their wedding especially Antuan's face as he exchanges vows with his bride. Okay back to the engagement session. Well, Jessica and Antuan are both dog lovers so of course we had to include their babies in the session. They are also avid health and exercise enthusiasts (cycling is their fave!!!) and both have hearts that light up the room when they are together. They are just good people! They are so easy going and genuine. They are kind, compassionate and loving with one another and with those around them. I had the best time laughing with them and getting to know them and their fun and loving spirit during their engagement session. We worked at their house for the first part of the session so they could include their pooches and then drove to a local park where we finished up. I learned so much about them and couldn't wait for their wedding at the Royal Oak Farmers Market. Love, laughter and light - that's what I think of when I think of this couple. They love hard, they laugh loud and they light up the room when they are together!
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Downtown Detroit Engagement Pictures

Downtown Detroit Engagement Pictures

Z Lot Rooftop Engagement FUN with Nikki + Pete
Mar 21, 2017
Z Lot Downtown Detroit Engagement Pictures with Nikki and Pete taken by Kellie Saunders, a leading Detroit wedding photographer. Now that the sun has FINALLY  arrived in our fine state of Michigan, it's time for some spring engagement session blogging! I wasn't able to blog everything last year as I did a lot of traveling with my family and a few destination weddings, but I'm happy that I have some time to catch up now. I was just finishing up Nikki and Pete's wedding album design and thought this would be a perfect time to revisit their engagement session, especially in case some other couples want to see how much fun you can have at the Z Lot in Detroit! Even though this session wasn't that long ago (technically only about a year), I've heard rumors that the Z Lot may require special permission or a permit these days. At the time of this engagement shoot they did not require a permit, but things are quickly changing in the city and the places we were once able to use for engagement photos are not always available. It's important that no matter who you are working with for your wedding and engagement photos you double check your locations in case permits or permission is required so you aren't disappointed if you get turned away. What I loved the most about Pete and Nikki was their fun spirit and ability to just go with the flow! They wanted to bring their cute pooch - who I LOVED by the way, but my advice is to always make sure you have a dog handler with you. The part of and engagement session with dogs is usually only a small portion of the entire session, so you'll need someone to hold onto the doggie while we are working on all of the other photos you need. Pete brought his best man with him to the session who was our "dog handler". He did a great job too! We started our photo session on the roof top of the Z Lot parking garage. The sun was out at full blast and I wanted to try out my new lights to see how much power I could draw from them. I had recently made the switch from Nikon speedlights to Godox and I can say I absolutely LOVE them. The reason for the switch (for any photographers reading this) was simply because Godox offers a wireless remote inside their flash unit for about a third of the price of Nikon units and they work flawlessly with their other lights. I only use Godox now. The first couple of photos were taken with one speedlight, bare bulb and I think it did a great job for me! The rest of the session was natural light which I prefer if possible, but I also like to jazz things up with light once in awhile. We stayed close to the Z lot since we had the pampered pooch with us but we still had a great time!!! I'll post photos from their wedding in the upcoming weeks so you can see what an amazing wedding day they had!!! Congrats Pete and Nikki!!!! Thanks so much for working with me and for the wine and chocolate! I absolutely loved it!!!!
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