Independence Seaport Museum Wedding Photographers: Evan & Sheri

This nautically inspired Philadelphia wedding took place at the Independence Seaport Museum on Penn’s Landing.  It was vibrant, emotionally-charged and took it’s red-white-and-blue theme even farther with a blessing from a wedding guest who is also a national hero!

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Evan and Sheri contacted me looking for a photographer that they could trust to provide unique, artistic images and custom tailor the wedding day photography coverage to fit their needs and desires.  Following a friends’ recommendation, they looked at my work and knew immediately that we were the perfect fit.

Their nautical theme incorperated navy blue and white stripes with pops of red.  Sheri’s shoes were adorable and had little bows that tied in the back.  They chose red roses because they really stood out against the navy bridesmaids dresses and gray tuxedos.

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Evan and Sheri’s wedding bands were stunning– they were both very ornate and  really shimmered and gleamed in the sunlight.

I wanted to show off those elements by contrasting the bright ornate rings against a dark, solid background where they could get all of the attention.

I found a surface that not only did that, but was also reflective, intensifying the effect…

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One of the reasons that Sheri and Evan chose the Independence Seaport Museum in Penn’s Landing was its proximity to the iconic Ben Franklin Bridge.

I noticed this black and white photograph of the bridge on the wall and if I stood at just the right angle I was able to see the reflection of Sheri and her wedding gown.

I thought it was a unique way to bring the Ben Franklin Bridge indoors and into their photography…

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I really like photography’s ability to freeze time.  here Sheri’s make-up artist is applying a finishing spray.  I snapped this photo just at the moment before the spray touched her skin, illuminating it against the dark window curtain of the Hilton Philadelphia at Penn’s Landing.

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Evan shared that Sheri is the most amazing woman that he has ever encountered.  They first met in high school, Sheri was “the new girl” and had been in Catholic School up to that point.  They had classes together, but she was very quiet.  They both had secret crushes on each other, but nothing really came of it until after they graduated.

While Sherri is quiet, Evan shared that she has more drive, perseverance, strength and determination than anyone that he knows.  She is physically strong as well and invests time on her fitness, too.  I like this photo because it shows her quiet side as well as her strength.

Her body language conveys her more demure and humble demeanor, while the dramatic lighting and positioning of her arm shows her strength, all the while showing that she is absolutely gorgeous :).

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Evan went on, “Sheri is extremely smart and excels in everything she does.  She is so beautiful, she goes out of her way to help so many people. Her heart is bigger than the world.  She is so supportive of me and has backed me since day one… I feel so blessed and lucky to now be able to call Sheri my wife!”

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Here Sheri stands in front of the Ben Franklin Bridge.  I told her she should totally be on the cover of Philadelphia wedding magazine.  🙂

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The bridesmaids joined in.  They were so such fun and so excited for Sheri and Evan!

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One of the highlights of Evan’s day was arriving at the Independence Seaport Museum by boat.  His friend piloted his boat past the Moshulu and other historic ships that were docked at Penn’s Landing.

If you look closely at the next photograph you can see Evan arriving with his groomsmen along with Philadelphia’s skyline and two historic ships.

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Evan went straight from his arrival to the “First Look” where he saw Sheri for the first time on their wedding day.   He was looking very dapper and was eager to see his bride-to-be!

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Sheri said, “We went back and forth about doing pictures before or after the ceremony, and I personally struggled as it is tradition for the groom not to see the bride until she walks down the aisle. Eventually we decided to have a first look, so we could enjoy cocktail hour with our guest. I had no idea what to expect with the first look, but Lisa and Kris made it such a beautiful, special, and private moment for just the two of us.”

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Evan shared, “The first time I saw her on the wedding day I honesty almost cried. Standing in front  of me was the most beautiful and amazing woman I have ever seen. It almost felt like a dream. I’ll never forget it.”
His face says it all…

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Sheri felt similarly and said, “The first time I saw Evan on our wedding day I was in awe.   I was filled with happiness that we would be life partners and that he chose me to be his wife! I am looking forward to many more memories and years of happiness together, living our life together, and one day starting a family of our own.”

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Evan and Sheri’s relationship has grown over the last *ten* years.  Sheri said time has really helped them to grow as individuals and as a couple.   She said that they work well together probably because of thier support and encouragement of each other.  Evan was a huge support to Sherri when she went back to grad school, and Sheri supported Evan starting his own business.

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Evan and Sheri both live active lifestyles.  They love mountain biking, boating, kayaking, really just enjoying each others company, especially on the water.

They were looking for a wedding venue that would be different and unique and when they came across the Independence Seaport Museum everything just clicked.

Evan was particularly interested in the historic boats harbored in Penn’s Landing.  Here you can see them strolling along the waterfront…

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Sheri said she was impressed with the way I was able to accommodate for their unique needs as a couple.  I was able to have a strong creative vision of my own while also being collaborative and even laid back at times, too.

She was especially appreciative of the way I took time to understand their priorities so that I would be on the same page as them throughout the wedding day.

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Sheri was eagerly anticipating their wedding ceremony.  Not only was it a decade in the making, but they would be surrounded by thier closest friends and family at the Seaport Museums’ rotunda overlooking the water.  The site was absolutely breathtaking.

While I’m not nearly as physically fit as Sheri, I make sure to keep in shape so I can capture photographs like this.  I literally ran from the ceremony site to climbing a few sets of stairs to a deck that was quite a distance away.  Kris covered for me at the ceremony site in case anything out of the ordinary happened.  😉

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I was back with plenty of time to spare– here you can see the ring exchange.

I love their expressions here:

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The ring bearer was adorable.  While the wedding officiant spoke, he eventually sat down and played with flower petals, haaa such a cute moment…

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The kiss– I love all of the energy in this photo from the kissing couple to the clapping bridal party and guests to the wind and waves in the background there was so much movement and excitement!

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To say the bridal party was happy for Sheri & Evan would be a huge understatement.  😉

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Their cocktail hour was held on the deck of the museum.  It provided a view of the Delaware River Waterfront and Penn’s Landing as well as an interesting view of several tall buildings surrounding the museum.

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The gathering felt very hip and luxe, part of that was the atmosphere above, but part was also the music.  Sheri mentioned, “Chris Dougherty, Steve Watkinson, and Carol Borelli from Keystoned played our cocktail hour, we loved that they incorporated a variety of some of our favorite songs from Dave Matthews Band, Bob Marley, Jack Johnson, and more!”

I liked the look of the Edison Bulbs, with the Ben Franklin Bridge in the distance.  The band was tight and really created some real ambiance.

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I moved inside to prepare for the bridal party entrances and noticed Sheri through an open door.  She was chatting with her guests and enjoying her time t cocktail hour.  I like the way the pains of glass break up the frame and the open door and white dress draw attention to the bride…

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The bridal party entrances were fun and far from ordinary.

One of the bridesmaids was escorted in by *two* groomsmen and she totally embraced her inner diva while the groomen danced around her.  Another bridesmaid, who I effectionately called Elsa hehe, embraced the red white and blue theme and waved an American flag while perched upon a groomsman’s shoulders…

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Sheri & Evan  decorated the Seaport Museum with blue up-lighting which gave it an almost underwater feel.  I captured that unique lighting during their first dance.

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The flower girl *loved* Sheri and during the first dance when van spun Sheri, the flower girl ran up to her to give her a hug and dance along.

Evan and Sheri smiled and kept dancing.  Evan said, “Sheri is so great with my nieces and nephews, all kids really.  She will be the best mother someday.  We already have names picked out, haha!”

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Remember how I mentioned the guest of Honor?  It was actually Evan’s grandfather.  He is 93 years old and like a second father to Evan, and also a true American hero.

While fighting in World War II with the Army Airforce, the B17 plane he was in was shot.  The plane split in half and only his grandfather, Horace Hosbach, and the radio man were able to parachute out, the rest lost their lives.

Touched, Sheri went on, “After the plane was shot down, he was immediately captured by the German Army and was a POW for 14 months and held in several POW camps in Poland and Germany. It is amazing this man is alive to tell his story today. We were honored that he was able to give a blessing on our wedding day, as both Evan and I and the whole family love him and look up to him so much.”

You can see all of that in Evan’s eyes…

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The guests were a lively and fun bunch.  They enjoyed the speeches and toasts and were very participatory in everything.

Here you can see them raising their hands in agreement when the best man brought up some of Evan’s recent Facebook posts, haha!

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The speeches made Evan and so many of the guests laugh out loud.  Here you can see Evan’s nephew, who was such an awesome kid, he seems to be looking up to Evan…

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Group hug!  This happened following the best man’s speech!

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Cake smash!!!   Sheri had every intention of giving Evan a polite little bite of cake.  That is when the crowd began egging her on (I told you they were feisty) and she went in for the all out smash:

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Haaaa this has to be one of my most creative compositions ever!    If you look closely you can see that Evan snapped the garter, as if he was hiking a football.

You can see it hovering between his legs as several men watch and one springs into action.  I love the expression on his face hahaha!!!

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Sheri hit the dance floor with confidence while guests resourcefully incorporated props from the photo booth…

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There is something about this photo that I really like– it captures the fog machine as light beams through it.  You can also see a cocktail illuminated the the light and the crowded dance floor.  The ladies are looking fabulous :).

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I’ll end their set with a romantic photo from the end of the evening.  I liked the lights from Penn’s Landing and allowed them to create patterns of light in the background while silhouetting Sheri & Evan against the dark sky and making them pop with a bit of rim-light.

Everything about this image says that they lived happily ever after…

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Evan and Sheri, thanks for inviting me to spend one of the greatest days of your life by your side.  It was a pleasure to capture you and your family and friends– your event was unique and a lot of fun!  I hope this text and these images do it justice!

Thanks for your kind words, “We instantly knew we wanted Rhinehart Photography to capture our day. Lisa was very thorough throughout the entire planning process, which was great since Evan and I had no idea what to expect. We are so glad we chose Rhinehart Photography to be a part of our day.  They were very accommodating– anything we asked, they found a way to make it happen!”

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