“A hidden boldness. A pearl of wisdom. A deep resonator. For me, beauty is being confident. A quiet and stilled confidence that is rooted in something deeper. Growing up I never had the opportunity to dance along the water’s edge as I did this evening. Sinking my toes into the cool sand and raising my hands as if I were giving God a great big hug. It was as if it were just me and Him – where the world stopped and we got to dance the night away. It is a memory I’ll never forget” ~ Megan
After a wonderful few days in New York City with family (check out their beautiful wedding day here), Amanda and Matt moved the celebration to their home town of Virginia Beach. They filled the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art with love and amazing details that perfectly illustrated their personalities.
Amanda made their cake topper and display stands! Impressive.
The delectable cupcakes by Twisted Sisters Cupcakes.
Matt loves Minis. So of course his cake had to be one! (also crafted by Twisted Sisters)
Introducing the happy couple.
The shoe game = hilarious. If you’ve never seen it, it’s basically a fun version of The Newlywed Game.
Matt loves chocolate chip cookies so instead of a traditional champagne toast, everyone dipped mini cookies in milk!
Congratulations again Amanda & Matt and thank you for including me in your special day! It was a true honor to celebrate your beautiful relationship. May this be the beginning of many decades of love and happiness!
There are couples who go together like peanut butter & jelly, ice cream & hot fudge, or chips & dip. However, Amanda and Matt are in a compatibility category all their own. I have known these two for several years and cannot imagine them with anyone but each other. Their relationship has that magical spark. The love they share spills out onto those around them and the world is a better place because of it.
Matt loves her dedication to everything she does – from home decorating, to creating gifts for friends and family, she always puts her entire heart into it.
Amanda loves when he spontaneously breaks into his signature dance move while sitting at a red light.
They met many years ago thanks to a broken down car and it was love at first sight. Well, maybe not completely…but there was at least attraction at first sight! A relationship developed and although their hearts knew early on they had found completion, ‘life’ happened and wedding plans never came to fruition.
After years of building a life together, on the morning of January 25th, 2013, Matt finally got down on one knee and asked Amanda to be his forever. She happily said yes.
Surrounded by family and the beautiful Shakespeare’s Garden in Central Park, Amanda & Matt said ‘I Do’ on August 14.
Amanda and Matt chose the date to honor her maternal grandparents – it would’ve been their 64th wedding anniversary. They were absolutely there in spirit!
How adorable is this little guy?!
They chose the traditional route of not seeing each other before the ceremony, but decided to exchange gifts instead. This moment will be forever etched in my memory. Words cannot do it justice…this is why I love what I do!
There’s nothing quite like daddy-daughter time on a wedding day!
Amanda radiates beauty from within! She is absolutely stunning.
I love how Matt looks at Amanda. It is obvious that he adores her.
Blessings from family.
After lunch we took off to several areas of the city. I felt like paparazzi following celebrities as we walked along the NYC streets!
Even in the middle of a crowded Times Square, it was only him & her…
Carrying her over the threshold…of their wedding night suite. The first night of the rest of their lives as husband and wife!
Stay tuned for Friday’s post with images from their reception party in Virginia Beach!
Now that I have this amazing sparkly new website and blog, it’s time to show it off! Today I’m kicking off my biweekly blog posting…that’s right, twice a week (hopefully on Tuesdays and Fridays) you’ll be hearing from yours truly. *cue confetti and festive music* I am SO excited about the sessions I have lined up for the next couple of months that I already can’t wait to share the images with you! AND I’ll get to take a walk down memory lane to share images from the past year or so that haven’t had a ‘home’ for display until now. I’ll also be throwing in some helpful tips and information for photographers so if you have questions, please ask! I’ll do my best to answer them or will find someone who can
Enjoy these images from the Dancer In the Field session I shared about in my first post. If you haven’t had a chance to read it, you can find the story here.
Never in a million years would I have imagined this scenario to kick off the new season of Erin Kass Photography. But here I sit. Overwhelmed with awestruck wonder as I soak in the faithfulness and goodness of God…for so many reasons.
Not only am I finally seeing with my physical eyes what the eyes of my heart have seen for more than a decade with the launch of this new website and business direction, but for the past year I have had the honor and privilege of speaking life into the next generation of creative artists through Delight and Be. If you had told me even 18 months ago that I’d be madly in love with teenaged girls, I would’ve laughed and thought you were crazy. However, God has a sense of humor and His ways are higher than ours and I’m so thankful.
Over the course of last year God made it increasingly clear that Delight was to play a large role on the stage of my life. By the end of 2013, I knew I would be leading the first ever Delight East coast retreat in the spring of this year.
As the 2013 holiday season ended and I turned my attention toward planning, I searched through rental property listings on the hunt for the perfect location. I came across a 200-year-old restored barn house and added it to my favorites list. After other properties fell through, I came back to the listing of this old barn house and looked through the pictures again. The house is on 25 acres of land in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. Next to the house is a huge wide-open meadow. As I prayed for clarity, God gave me the vision of a dancer in the meadow by the house. Decision made.
I am passionate about seeing people live in the fullness of who they were created to be. I believe we all have certain gifts and talents that make us come fully alive. My heart for the retreat was for every girl to discover who she is in God and to have the freedom to live and worship from that place. Creative individuals are often seen as weird and don’t fit the mold of what’s considered ‘normal’. But there’s beauty in our weirdness and purpose for our unique quirks and personalities.
The dancer in my vision was worshipping God through dance because that is her gifting. It wasn’t a photographer or a writer who just happened to be dancing in worship…it was an act of worship from the heart of a dancer.
Weeks passed and the vision of the dancer continued to visit my thoughts as we finalized plans. Girls registered but we still didn’t have a dancer…even once we hit max capacity.
Two weeks before the retreat, we suddenly had three cancellations and a list of girls who could only come if a scholarship was given. Within a couple of days, all three spots were filled thanks to two generous donations. Who was the last girl to sign up, less than a week before the retreat? A dancer. Of course she was. Because God is always right on time…not too soon or too late but in His perfect timing. And she is a liturgical dancer…one who worships God through dance. Of course she is.
I still had no clue how this vision was going to come to fruition but at least I knew God had brought a dancer. That alone would’ve made my heart happy but God had more…
The retreat started on Thursday evening and over the following two days, God showed up in ways that are beyond anything I have ever experienced. I’m not even going to attempt to put a lot of it into words because it just isn’t possible for the human brain to comprehend.
As I got ready on Sunday morning, I realized the vision hadn’t happened yet. I figured it must’ve meant something more figurative vs. literal or that maybe God would reveal something different than what I expected because I didn’t know how it was going to happen at that point. Sunday was our last full day together and it was to be our ‘victory celebration’. God brought freedom and revelation of who we are in Him from Thurs to Saturday and so Sunday was the first day of the rest of our lives, so to speak. It was a day to take ‘newborn pictures’ of each other as we celebrated this new season of living in the knowledge and confidence of who God says we are.
The morning passed and as I sat down at the table for lunch, Angie Urban, one of the amazing women I had the privilege of leading alongside, was telling a couple other leaders about a vision God had given her that morning. I’m sure my eyes grew three sizes as her words computed in my brain. God had given her a vision of a girl dancing in the field in worship. WHAT?!?!?! She proceeded to tell us that she had already made plans with Grace, the dancer, to go out in the field later that afternoon after our structured shooting time.
The vision was going to happen. THE VISION WAS GOING TO HAPPEN. One of the girls was going to be dancing in the field as an expression of worship from the heart of a dancer. (You can read Angie’s side of the story here)
Even as I’m writing this, I can’t wrap my mind around it….And it gets better.
I had not picked up my camera at all over the weekend. But I knew I had to shoot this.
Angie directed Grace to walk out into the field and start to dance to the lyrics in her heart. I stayed in the background and was overcome with the weight of what unfolded before me. We were standing on holy ground. At a holy appointment. Joining the great cloud of witnesses as we worshipped God through the gifts He has given us – Angie and I with our cameras and Grace in dance.
I savored the moment and then attempted to wipe the tears from my eyes enough to see through the lens of my camera (Thank you Jesus for auto focus!) And I began to shoot.
We spent a few minutes photographing and then stopped while Angie encouraged Grace to press in further and really release what was in her heart through movement. I used that quick break to scroll through the images I had just taken. One image left me breathless. There on the camera screen was the vision God had been showing me for months. Not only did I get to experience it first hand, but God also gave it to me in concrete form.
As if that wasn’t enough, I later counted which image it was in the sequence of shooting. It was the seventh image I shot of Grace dancing. Seven. The number of completeness and perfection in the Bible.
This is obviously not your typical first blog post for a new website. It’s not the typical way to kick off a business. But I’m not typical. I want the foundation to be built on the goodness and faithfulness of God. He gave me the vision of a dancer in the field and then brought it to life without me having to do a thing.
I have had the passion, heart and vision to be working full time as a photographer for more than a decade. Photography is not just what I do, it’s a part of who I am. May I always remember that my responsibility is to simply be true to who I am and to where He leads…and I can’t wait to see where He leads.
This is the seventh image…the vision of the dancer in the field.