Silverman Family - Saturday Morning Session

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So you want photos of your family, but you want the whole process to feel like a casual Saturday morning at home where you get to play with your kids, snuggle with your partner and the whole thing process is more about giggles than perfect poses. Well then Saturday Morning Sessions are just what you are looking for!!! While these sessions don’t have to take place on a Saturday, the idea behind them is to capture your family in a laid back, casual way so that the images feel like you!

I got to work with the Silverman Family for a Saturday Morning Session at a beautiful studio space in Fishtown Philadelphia and I just LOVE how these turned out! From their two cute kiddos, to the snuggles and giggles on the bed, to the images of Nicolette breastfeeding her little guy…the session was perfection! These two parents love their kids so much and these images show that love!

Wanna book your own session? These are the perfect gift for Mother’s Day/Father’s Day and we’d love to work with your family too! Click here to contact us and make sure to mention you are looking for a Saturday Morning Session!

Ashley and Melissa - An Old City Philadelphia LGBTQ Proposal and Engagement Session

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I always have a little bit of nerves before a session but when a session is actually a proposal? Oh ya’ll, that is a whole different level. We met up with Ashley and Melissa for a Old City Philly LGBTQ couples shoot back in February and Ashley was counting on me to give her the cue to propose all while keeping her then girlfriend in the dark as to the real motive behind the shoot. And I am happy to say, it all went down perfectly! I could tell Ashley was nervous but as soon as she dropped to one knee on that chilly day and Melissa started giggling and bouncing up and down, it was like the nerves for everyone melted to joy. Melissa was so excited ya’ll. I wish sometimes that photos could convey movement because the entire session, she just bounced up and down and kept checking out the new ring on her hand and smiling over at her new fiancée. It was ADORABLE.

After she said yes, we wandered around Old City to capture some engagement photos and while it was definitely cold, I think these two barely felt it. Their joy and happiness and excited was keeping them warm and they were just so easy to photograph. We snuck down little alleys and wandered down my favorite streets and by the time we parted ways, I too couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. And thats what I love about my job…getting to be apart of such exciting, life changing moments that just fill your whole soul up with goodness and getting to be around people who are just so happy and in love.

I am super excited to say these two will be making some more appearances on the blog as they have asked me to be their wedding photographer and I am SO EXCITED to get to work with them again next year. I already know their day will be filled with the same kind of happiness and joy that their proposal day was and Ic can’t wait to capture it all! So look for these two again and enjoy some of my favorites!

Layla and Meg - An Old City Philadelphia Lesbian Wedding

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I usually can get the vibe of a wedding day from the moment I walk into the getting ready rooms of my couples and let me tell ya - I knew from the second I saw these two, their wedding day was going to be a PARTY! And it sure was! Layla and Meg had a beautiful winter wedding in Philly on the last weekend of 2018 in historic Old City Philadelphia at the Renaissance Hotel and they were surrounded by such much love and laughter! I adore Meg’s goofy self, the way she makes every thing feel like a party and I love that Layla is the perfect match for her. Layla is caring, down to earth and oh so sweet, evening feeding me snacks before their ceremony started because she know about my blood sugar issues.

These two decided to have a marathon of a wedding day by renting a party bus to go all over the city for portraits and it was SO MUCH FUN! I rarely get to ride in the bus with my clients and they blasted music, dancing and drinking champagne and it set such a tone for the fun to come! They had the most laughter filled ceremony I have ever been apart of and you know what they say! A Couple who laughs together, stays together and if that’s true….well Layla and Megan are going to be together forever.

I got to work with the incredible team over at KMT Event Group and I made an instant bff in owner Kia. Her team made the day flow perfectly, the details look just right and kept me laughing all day long. It so nice to get to work with vendors who love their jobs and couples as much as I do and it was obvious that they do!

Layla and Meg, thank you for allowing the honor of being apart of your beautiful and joy filled day! I had such a hard time narrowing this down to a few favorites because I loved it all! I wish you both a lifetime of the kind of laughter you shared on this day!

Sarah and Bryan - A Manayunk Brewery Winter Wedding

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When I saw the forecast for Sarah and Bryan’s day, I won’t lie, this girl squealed! It was in the mid 50’s and for a wedding that was on the last weekend of 2018, thats practically unheard of! And it was going to be sunny!! I started of their day at the Hilton on City Line Ave for getting ready photos and they both had such gorgeous spaces and light! Which is a photographers dream! Sarah decided to forgo the traditional white gown and had this stunning gold sequin dress custom made for her and it was gorgeous! And Bryan wore the most incredible Burgundy suit! Both of their looks were perfectly complimented by my girl Lauren’s florals (owner of Bloomsbury Floral Design) and those stunning, rich colors added that extra bit of glam every winter wedding needs!

Sarah and Bryan had their first look right outside their venue, the gorgeous Manayunk Brewery. Watching Sarah come around the corner, it was so sweet to see Bryan’s whole face light up! These two so clearly love each other and they couldn’t stop smiling and sneaking kisses all day long! We wandered around Manayunk for some portraits with their wedding party before it was time to make these two officially husband and wife. Sarah’s dad sang a beautiful song that was apart of his wedding with Sarah’s late mother and there were tears all around. There was so much obvious emotion for Sarah in that moment and watching her and her dad walk down the aisle was easily my favorite part of their day.

And then it was party time! The Manayunk Brewery provided incredible cocktails and food, the couple danced, speeches were given and the friends and family danced the night away. Right before we left though, I captured one of my favorite images ever of Sarah and Bryan dancing through the window while I blocked traffic on Main Street in Manayunk. Anything for that perfect shot though and it was the perfect way to end a perfect day!

Oh, and can I just say how much I loved getting to work with this venue? Their coordinator Paris did such an incredible job and was so easy to work with, which as a photographer, is a dream! The venue recently underwent a renovation and its safe to say, its just an incredibly stunning space now! And I really hope some more couples bring me back there soon!

Enjoy some of my favorites from my second to last wedding of 2018! And a massive thank you to Sarah and Bryan for allowing us to be apart of your day!

Florist - Bloomsbury Floral Design

Venue and Catering - Manayunk Brewing Company

Day of Coordinator - Paris Rose, Manayunk Brewing Company

Hotel - Hilton City Line Ave

3 Ways to Have The Queer Wedding Of Your Dreams

I recently was chatting with a friend who is getting married and they asked me what my top three tips would be for them as a queer couple as they are planning. It took me a moment to respond because there are so many things I would say to a queer couples but I quickly narrowed it down to what I think are the three biggest tips and I thought it would be helpful to share them here too! While I don’t think this is an exhaustive list or the only ways to have the queer wedding of your dream, I hope it gives any couples out there feeling a bit overwhelmed a place to start!

1.) Do things your own way

Planning a wedding can feel like having to do a whole of traditions that don’t feel anything like the couple you are, but it doesn’t have to be that way.  Your wedding should be about the two of you, the things you like and traditions that matter to you, but there will be people that tell you that you have to do this or that thing.  You have to wait to see each other till the ceremony. You have to have a wedding party. You have to wear a dress. Or a suit. You have wear white. It has to be formal. Or cheap.  Don’t listen to them.  If doesn’t feel right, don’t do it.  Which leads us to number 2…

2.) Plan this thing together

Some of my favorite weddings have been the ones where the couple has brought together all the things and people they love for an epic party party celebrating who they are and how much they love each other.  And that’s what a wedding should be about right? The two of you. So plan this together and pull inspiration and ideas from the things that are you.  Love science and robotics? Have a robot ring bearer! Into craft beer?  Design your whole cocktail hour around craft beer! Was your first date at an art museum?  Maybe plan your wedding at an art gallery! Does your partner have a deep love of 90’s music?  Maybe have your whole dinner playlist be their favorite 90’s songs! Whatever it is you love, whatever things are the two of you, plan your wedding around that and its going to be a day that not only feels like the two of you, but planning it together will be a lot more fun.  


3.) Hire Vendors That Hella Queer

This last one might seem like a duh to some of you, but I hear from a lot of couples that they didn’t think it matter if their DJ/florist/photographer was LGBTQ and how much they wish they would have hired someone from within the community.  Its one thing to be LGBTQ friendly, its a totally different thing to actually be queer as fuck and the later means you are getting to work with people who already get it, not ones you have to explain why neither one of you is “the man in the relationship” or why you are deciding to forgo traditions to do your own thing.  They already get it and it means they are even more ready to help you have the wedding of your dreams, not the wedding that is expected of you.  And this goes for all part of your day. Outfits to DJ’s to caterers to jewelers to planners to florists to photographers to venues.


Are you a queer couple who has gotten married that has some tips of your own? I’d love to hear them! Leave me a comment with what you think are some of the top tips for LGBTQ+ couples tying the knot!

Penny Praline - A Queer Philadelphia Plus Size Boudoir Session

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Tattoos + a badass queer babe + a gorgeous penthouse = you better believe some serious magic! Penny was such a delight to work with during her shoot and she was game for anything! Her gorgeous tattoos and outfit choices really shined in her session and this Fishtown Philadelphia penthouse was the most ahhhmazing backdrop! We had all the fun laughing and rolling around and getting wet, but more than that, Penny is the kind of person you just wanna hang out with because she is so down to earth and sweet and funny. And she is a photographers DREAM to shoot! I also love that she didn’t wanna hide her body and was all about loving all of it! Not every client who walks through my door is down for this and thats ok, but when I get to work with a babe thats like nah, all of me is amazing, its awesome!

A huge thank you to Penny for hiring me for this shoot and allowing me to share some favs with all of you! Wanna schedule your own shoot? Click here to learn all the details and send us a message!

Jenne and Julian - A University of Penn Intimate Queer Wedding

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Jenne and Julian had one of the most unique weddings I have ever been apart of and to be honest, I loved it! We didn’t do a big first look, there was amazing vegan food, square-dancing that was taught by an instructor during the reception and a ton of time for portraits through out the day. The University of Penn was the most incredible background for their intimate wedding and they were also just so sweet to be around. Jenne wore the most lovely short lace dress that looked incredible on them with beautiful handmade flowers by another one of their partners! Both Jenne and Julian had their other partners support layered in through out the day and it was beautiful to witness and photograph! The couple also went to great efforts to ensure that their guests could enjoy the food, even getting. cake that catered to a few of their friends dietary needs and it was so so beautiful to see this sense of community and love through all of it. Oh! And Julian even made a Ring Bot to deliver their rings during their ceremony! How fun is that?? And while I had a hard time narrowing it down, here are just some of my favorite images of the two of them as I wanted to share this wedding without infringing on the privacy of their guests! Enjoy!!

Amber and Natalie - Fells Point Baltimore LGBTQ Engagement Session

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On the first snow of the year, it felt appropriate to blog this summer engagement session that was full of sunshine, warm weather and the cutest of couples! Amber and Natalie hired us for their lesbian Baltimore wedding next year and ya’ll let me tell you, from even just the first five minutes with them, I knew they were going to be a favorite of next year. For their engagement session, we wandered around the beautiful Fells Point neighborhood Baltimore and we found so many cute spots for photos. Amber and Natalie brought along their sweet puppy and one of their mom’s and they just were so easy going and sweet. These are the kind of sessions I live for, the ones where a couple just is themselves and laughter abounds and they just fall into poses so easily because they just genuinely love being around each other. And their photos show that!

Get excited to see these two again next year and for now, enjoy just a few of my favorites from their engagement session!

Farrah - An Andro Queer Philly Boudoir Session

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While I love me some lace body suits and satin, I also really love when clients show up with wanting to create images that feel different. And Farrah (Or as some of you may know her, Tara) definitely brought a cool vibe to her shoot in downtown Philadelphia with me last week and I am just obsessed with how these images turned out. While my style is often bright and full of natural light, we shot at night with the city lights behind her and I love the editorial vibe the whole session had! This queer babe is a kickass hair and makeup artist by day and sickening performer by night and so she wanted something that felt a little more androgynous for this session, which lets be real, I LOVED. From her amazing green lipstick, to the suite we shot in, to her fun to be around vibes, the whole thing was gold! And I decided to share my favorites in only black and white for this shoot because I love the story and editorial element that black and white brings!

Ps! Need a new stylist? You can hire this babe at the South Philly Ulta for amazing cuts, colors and makeup! Book your appt with Tara online or by calling the store!

Ala and Roy - Old City Philadelphia Engagement Shoot

Old City Philadelphia Engagement Session with Ala and Roy

I have shot engagement sessions in Old City Philadelphia so many times but Ala and Roy brought such a new perceptive to one of my favorite places! These two are historians, 18th century historians to be exact, and so it felt appropriate that we shot their engagement session in one of Philly’s neighborhoods that is rich with history and to start their sessions in the historic 18th Century Gardens! Roy is one of the most easy guys I have ever gotten to work with. He has such a sweet demeanor and was totally down to love on his beautiful fiancé for their session, something that some guys aren’t so into. It was darling the way he would pull her in for snuggles and kisses and because of that, their session was just perfection! As we walked around, I learned tidbits of history, both theirs and Old City and it got me so excited to work with them again next year at one of my favorite Philadelphia wedding venues, The Maas Building. I just know that their day will be every bit as vibrant as their engagement session and that to me is what I love about this job - madly in love couples, celebrating love! Enjoy some of my favorites!

Jackie and Kit - A South Philly Lesbian Engagement Session

South Philly Lesbian Engagement Session

South Philly Lesbian Engagement Session

The number of times I field emails from couples telling me how nervous they are for pictures because one of them is just so awkward are too many to count.  Almost every couple I work with at least one of them is apologizing for the fact that they don’t know what to do or will be awkward, and within minutes, I am showing them just how NOT awkward they are!  Jackie was def one of those people. But a few minutes into her and fiancee Kit’s engagement session in South Philly, she exclaimed, “Hey! This is more fun than I thought it would be!” And this photographer’s heart rushed with joy! Having couples who are up for anything and trust you AND think it was actually fun? A dream ya’ll!

I know first hand the nerves of having your picture taken and how especially as an LGBTQ couple it can feel overwhelming to be totally yourself and not worry about someone judging you. Its why I spend so much of my sessions talking to my couples from behind the camera. I want you to be yourself, whoever that is, and feel like being photographed by me is a safe, fun, and affirming experience. And I love when that comes across to my clients too! I loved what Kit wrote on her facebook page after they got their gallery - “Considering how much I hate PDA and having my picture taken, the fact that I don't hate my face in every one of these tells me we picked the right wedding photographer. Thanks Amanda Swiger!”

I am so excited to get to work with these two again next summer at one of my dream venues, Power Plant Productions, right in Old City. I just know their day is going to be the perfect celebration of their love for each other and the big gay party they are dreaming of! Enjoy my favorites ya’ll!

Marianna and Josh - Old City Philadelphia Engagement Session

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Old City Philadelphia has quickly become my favorite location for portrait sessions and elopements! And not only because its the part of the city I call home but also because there are SO many different vibes and colors and unique spots within just a few blocks of each other. I love that this place I call home also allows my clients so much variety in their engagement sessions and Marianna and Josh’s Philly engagement session is no different. The rich colors and history, the stunning views of the Ben Franklin Bridge from atop Bridge on Race, and these two getting lost in each others eyes…well ya’ll, it was perfection.

I am so happy that more and more unique, unashamedly themselves couples are finding their way to me. From tattooed to queer couples, non-traditional weddings to offbeat elopements, one common thread remains and that is how much love my clients have for each other and the trust they have in all my crazy ideas! And it makes me love my job even more!!!

Josh and Marianna, thank you for asking me to be apart of this incredible season of your life and I am already excited to spend your wedding day with you next year. Jordan and I had SO MUCH FUN hanging out with ya’ll and your momma and sister and I hope that these images are exactly what you hoped for! Enjoy my favorites (or many favorites in this case!!!) and get excited to see these two on here again next fall!

Jimmie and Chris - An Old City Philadelphia Rooftop Elopement

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From my very first email exchange with Jimmie, I knew I would like these two. From her sense of humor, to the way she wanted their wedding day to be a celebration of them, to her openness to ideas, to the way she described her and Chris’s relationship, I knew they were the kind of couple I had to work with. Together we planned a weekday afternoon wedding a top Bridge On Race Apartments (where Jordan and I live) and for them to get ready at Lokal Hotel, which is right around the corner and then end the evening with some portraits.

The day of their elopement there was not a cloud in the sky. Their suite at Lokal Hotel was bustling with their friends and family and Jimmie and Chris getting ready. After taking some photos of each of them getting dressed we did a little first look in a gorgeous alley right beside their hotel. This was my favorite part of the day…watching Chris see his beautiful bride for the first time and to see him cry with joy, it was just so beautiful. These two really love each other and it was so evident in that moment as well as in their vows a few minutes later.

They said “I do” 18 floors high overlooking the Ben Franklin Bridge with 6 of their favorite people around them. They chose to self unite, or have a Quaker Ceremony, which allowed them to not need an officiant. This made their wedding ceremony so perfectly them. Their vows were long and sweet, giggles were shared, her mom took photos and with a kiss it was all official. They were married! After pausing to take some photos of them with their guests, we headed down the street to the Painted Bride for some photos of the two of them. I loved this time with the two of them, the way they just laughed and made jokes, the way they were just so completely themselves. And it shows in their images, which made my initial thought true…I really did like these two!

Jimmie and Chris, thank you for allowing me to be apart of your start of this next new adventure. You two are so much fun and even though this blog post is far too late, I couldn’t not share your incredible day! Enjoy a few of my favorites!