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My mission as a wedding photographer is to help happy couples celebrate life's biggest joys with high quality photos and a dang good time. I believe the experience is just as important as the photos and that you deserve beautiful, lasting memories.

Hey!! I'm Gabriella.

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Wintry, Whimsical Buck Hotel Wedding

Meg & Chris need to win the world record for “most big life things accomplished in one year” for 2021 🤣 These two got engaged, bought a house, attended 5 billion weddings and had their own Buck Hotel wedding at the end of the year to cap it all off!!!

Meg booked me way back in January or February of 2021. We stayed in touch periodically, as she and Chris were on the fence about engagement photos.

Then I decided to have a session giveaway on Instagram in August, and lots of couples & individuals entered for a chance to win a free one-hour photo session with me of any kind. I entered all the names in a random name generator and was ECSTATIC when Meg & Chris’s names came up as the winners!!! We were going to do an engagement session after all 🤩 (You can see their free session riiiiight here!!!)

After getting to know Meg & Chris a little better during their engagement session, I felt even more excited and much better prepared to photograph their Buck Hotel wedding in December. I couldn’t wait to end my first full year of wedding photography with a bang!!!

Getting Ready

I arrived at the hotel where Meg was getting ready about 15 minutes early, as per usual. She introduced me to her bridesmaids and got my things together as Meg had the finishing touches applied to her hair while wearing her monster fuzzy slippers (that I was immediately jealous of lol).

I walked around the room to get a few getting ready photos of the girls. Then I asked a bridesmaid to help me carry Meg’s dress into the lobby where there was better lighting for the detail photos. (She was the first MVP of the day … stay tuned for the second bridesmaid MVP!!) Another wedding photographer was actually just leaving that area with a different wedding party and had left their speaker playing music while we were there. We hit the jackpot for detail photos!!

I’m pumped with what I was able to create in a short time with the dress pictures (hung up in a precarious position on the curtains of the lobby windows) and the rings & invitations (the comfy chair had a surprisingly nice texture!). As soon as I was wrapping up, I got word that Meg was ready to get into her dress!! Perfect timing 🙌🏼

Meg looked absolutely STUNNING in her dress. Like, wow. I photographed her mother & matron of honor buttoning up the beautiful lace buttons on the back of her dress and managed to get a few mirror shots of Meg observing the process.

As per Meg’s request, I got some fun photos of her bridesmaids being super dramatic and touching her dress with big smiles — she had done this picture at one of her friends’ weddings this fall and wanted to re-create the picture for her own wedding! Before we knew it, it was time to head to the church.

St. Martha Parish

I arrived at the church before the ladies so I could get some groom portraits of Chris before the ceremony … but he was nowhere to be found!! I made a mental note to make sure I got some solo shots of him later on before the craziness of the reception began.

Instead, I got a few scene setting photos of the outside of the church and met up with the gals as they ushered Meg into the back room to hide before the ceremony. There, I got some candid photos, some more portraits to show off Meg’s dress & flowers and orchestrated the first look with her dad!!

Suddenly, it was time for the ceremony to begin. I got in position and tested both cameras to make sure I had my settings correct right before Chris’s mom started walking down the aisle with the ring bearer and flower girl! I turned around and got a quick shot of Chris shaking the ring bearer’s hand before returning to my original position to photograph Meg’s family and bridesmaids.

Before she and her father walked down, I noticed the backlighting of where Meg & her dad were standing while they were getting directions for how to walk down the aisle and snapped a quick photo. I made another mental note to do a black & white edit to amplify the backlighting. Just photographer things 🤣

Catholic Ceremony

Then the music changed. Everyone stood up and turned around to witness the bride looking like a literal princess as she walked down the aisle toward her beaming groom. Chris had the BIGGEST smile watching his bride approach. Meg & her dad embraced, and she & Chris shared a quick kiss as they held hands and prepared to be married.

They had a Catholic ceremony, so I mostly stayed on the outskirts and used my zoom lens to photograph the couple while making sure I got some wide shots of the (beautiful) church to set the scene. I made sure I got at least one solid photo of each speaker they chose to be part of their wedding, and I tried to only use flash when it was necessary so as not to disturb the service.

One of the benefits of Catholic ceremonies is that because they are longer than the typical modern ceremony, it gives me the opportunity to get creative with my angles and composition — more time for the creative juices to flow!

“Introducing Mr. & Mrs. Waninger!”

Then it was time!!! Meg’s maid of honor AND matron of honor fluffed her dress to fulfill their duties and got in position to watch their beloved Meg say “I do” to a lifetime with Chris. (Yes, she had two MOH’s and you should too!!!)

The wedded couple made their vows, slipped the rings on each other’s fingers and sealed their union. They had not one, not two, but THREE kisses before raising their interlocked hands and turning towards the congregation in celebration!!! Meg & Chris looked at each other and shared the biggest smile EVER before returning to their seats for the rest of the mass.

After communion, where Meg & Chris waved hello to some friends & family members, the newlyweds walked over to the statue of Mary to say a prayer while the vocalist sang Ave Maria. Chris rested his hand on Meg’s shoulder while she knelt in prayer, which made for a super sweet moment.

Then the mass was over – the priest gave some closing comments before sending Meg & Chris back down the aisle as Mr. & Mrs. Waninger!!! (And the crowd went wilddddd ahhhhhhh!!) Chris got a high-five in the aisle and I directed him to kiss his WIFE with the cheering congregation in the background! Congratulations to the Waningers!!! 🥳

We got through most of the family photos in the church right after the ceremony – I always find it’s near impossible to get formal photos once cocktail hour begins so immediately post-ceremony is usually the best time for these important family pictures!! After we got those taken care of, the wedding party loaded onto their school bus and I followed them in my car as we made the trek to Franklin Square for some Christmas-themed photos before the sun went down.

Franklin Square

I got right to work photographing the wedding party. I snapped some fun photos of Meg & Chris before Amy, the matron of honor, established her MVP status by getting us all onto the carousel in the middle of the square!!!! Now I can officially say I’ve ridden a carousel on the job 🤣

While we were in line, a BEAUTIFUL image popped into my head of Meg & Chris kissing with the carousel spinning behind them — I had to make that happen!!!!! I quickly got Meg & Chris together, adjusted my camera settings to make that picture come to life, instructed them to kiss, and made one of my favorite bride & groom portraits to date. No joke. Meg & Chris, thank you for following along with my spontaneous ideas!!!

Cocktail Hour at The Buck Hotel

We finished pictures just in time – I mean it was practically nightfall by the time we got on the road to head back north for the reception! I got to the Buck Hotel before the wedding party and photographed some scene setters & details before guests began arriving.

The space quickly filled up with people talking, laughing, drinking and eating delicious appetizers (I helped myself to a few cheese squares!). I bopped around from here to there, trying to photograph as many candid smiles as I could and even getting some cute shots of the kids interacting with each other!

Reception Entrances

Instead of the bridesmaids & groomsmen pairing up for individual entrances, they all walked in single file to super fun music and gathered around to cheer on the newlyweds. Meg & Chris entered to the sound of applause, hoots and hollers with their hands raised high and huge smiles on their faces!! They waved hello to their loved ones and shared a kiss before getting in position for their first dance.

The newlyweds twirled around the dance floor to a song by the Black Keys, a relatively unique song for a first dance which is always cool to hear since I witness so many first dances! Chris spun Meg out for the finishing move to show off her dress as the crowd stood in applause!!

Memorable Toasts

The DJ moved right into toasts as Meg & Chris took a seat at the beautifully decorated sweetheart table. (Take a close look at Chris’s socks here and you might be able to make out the Philly Phanatic!!!!)

Meg’s sister and maid of honor Kathleen led off the toasts by talking about how incredible of a human being her sister Megan is and how excited she was to welcome Chris to the family. She ended her toast with a welcome gift to Chris as a nod to the Simpsons — a pair of cufflinks!! Chris immediately put them on as his first best man stepped up to make the second toast.

It was obvious from the beginning that Chris was super tight with his buddies, and this first best man had the crowd roaring with laughter. He ALSO ended his toast with a gift to Meg & Chris … a massive bottle of Smirnoff Ice!!! (Marking this as a first for the bride & groom to be iced at their own wedding!! 🤣) Chris obligingly took a sip before hugging his first best man.

Then the second best man gave his speech. He echoed a lot of the first best man’s speech about how great Chris was and had the crowed in fits of laughter before making the final toast of the night. It was very obvious that Meg & Chris are well loved and are surrounded by a fantastic group of supportive friends!!

Parent Dances

We moved right into parent dances after the toasts! Meg and her dad sang together as they moved slowly around the dance floor, waving to the crowd as they finished their dance!

Chris and his mom began with a slow dance (during which his mom may have shed a few happy tears) ended with an all-out dance party that some of his family members joined in on in the middle of the dance floor!! I’ve photographed a few parent-dances-turned-dance-parties, and let me just say, I am a massive fan!!!

Right after the music ended, it was time to cut the cake!! Bredenbeck’s Bakery did a freaking fanTASTIC job on Meg & Chris’s 5-tier cake with figurines that looked just like them and hidden Philly Phanatic on the back!!!!

Buck Hotel Wedding Reception

As the entrees were beginning to be served, I asked Chris if he wanted to gather his family together for a “formal” photo since we weren’t able to do one at the church. He said yes! So we made our way down to the photo booth in the back, where I took lots of photos of Chris with his friends and a massive family picture that more and more people trickled into until finally the last person slid in on the floor to complete the picture!!!

Mr. & Mrs. Waninger, congratulations on your marriage and on accomplishing an insane amount of big life events in 2021!!! I wish you lots of joy & happiness in the years to come and a less busy schedule in 2022!! Lol 🤣 It was an honor to document your big day!! Cheers, y’all 🥂💛

Vendors who made this day as special as it was:

Photographer: Gabriella Marie Photography

Venue: The Buck Hotel

Dress: Sposabella Bridal

Men’s Wear: Indochino

Hair: Beauty FX by Leann

Makeup: Underground Artistry

Florals: Your Poppy Flowers

Cake: Bredenbeck’s Bakery

DJ: East Coast Event Group

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- Melissa & Johnnie

“Gabriella was absolutely amazing!!! Words cannot even describe how perfect she was, but I’ll try my best. Right from the beginning, I knew she was the one. She was so caring, calming, organized, and just a genuinely happy person. She made me feel even more excited for my wedding. She was so helpful throughout the entire process right down to the big day. AND THE PICTURES - OH MY GOD. They are absolutely breathtaking and she definitely tells the story of your day in the most perfect way. She captures every precious moment while having a smile on her face the whole time she’s with you. I can’t say enough amazing things about her. I would absolutely recommend her to anyone looking to have the BEST photographer for any occasion. We had such an amazing experience with Gabriella and we can’t thank her enough!”


- Aaron & lydia

Gabriella is the BEST photographer and we could not have asked for anyone better to capture our proposal! I had intentions of interviewing multiple photographers, but after seeing her work and talking to her over the phone, I immediately booked with her. Her passion for photography is so evident. She goes above and beyond to make your shoot about YOU. She does a great job of taking control and guiding you with poses that you will love, and her candid shots are unbelievable. She had a smile on her face the entire time and we felt like a close friend was there doing this for us. Would recommend her 100 times out of 100!

Gabriella was absolutely amazing. She made the photography session so easy and effortless. Her personality is so warm and inviting, she made us feel so so comfortable during these pictures. Gabriella went above and beyond for us and I’m so grateful my significant other found her as a photographer. I would highly recommend!


- Alex & mike

Gabriella is not only an amazing photographer, but she is an amazing person! She was incredible to work with and made everything from our engagement photos to our wedding day extremely easy. She really understands your vibe and does everything she can to help make that come true! My husband is extremely camera shy, but he was so comfortable with her and the photos were amazing!


- kevin & riya

Gabriella is the BEST photographer and needless to say she went above and beyond our expectations! She was hired by my fiancé for our surprise proposal and she did a phenomenal job at capturing every single detail of it. She made our lives easy by understanding us, our personality, the way we wanted to be captured and she did just that! From showing us every beautiful inch of Longwood gardens to telling us about different poses to capturing the beauty and essence of nature! She made my dream come true with these beautiful pictures. We spent 2 hrs with her and there was sign of rush of ending the session and it was more like whatever we felt in the moment which is what I truly enjoyed. She sent us our sneak peak pictures the day off just several hours later and needless to say not only did our jaws dropped but every single person who viewed those pics while asking who the photographer was! We proudly share her information with every member of our family and friends because she truly deserves the best❤️ Thank you Gabriella for capturing the most beautiful and intimate moments of ours and We can’t wait to work with you again!


- brandon & nasia

Gabriella captured our special moments perfectly! She photographed our proposal, Holud night before the wedding, and wedding day. She was very easy to work with and always communicative and responsive. She was able to handle a 300 person wedding with ease and always got the shot. I've only seen the sneak peek from our wedding weekend but I am already in love with the pictures. She truly captured the joy and happiness of the weekend through her photos, which I will treasure forever. She is also just a genuinely kind person, which makes working with her even better :) Highly recommend.