Liberty Mountain Resort Wedding Photographers: Clara & Pedram

This multicultural wedding was fun, vibrant, and even threw in a few Star Trek references, including this one…

Clara shared, “We chose Rhinehart Photography because you really capture the individuality of the couples you photograph and it never feels forced or posed. Working with you was fun and easy, you made it stress-free and reminded us to just relax and enjoy our wedding day. You really made us feel like we weren’t just another client and you sat down with us multiple times to discuss the pictures and make sure that we got everything that we wanted.”

She continued, “Lisa, you really care about your clients and it shows through your whole process-– from the consultation, to meetings and especially on the wedding day.  You planned ahead but were also accommodating and flexible always asking about my priorities, which was so important to me with all of these once in a lifetime moments.  You had as much respect for my wedding day as I did, and it meant a lot to me. We felt very well taken care of and had so much fun working with you, thank you so much!!!”

I love getting to know my couples and tailoring their photography to fit their interests, personalities, style and needs.  When they told me they were having a multicultural wedding (with Scottish, Persian, Afghan and Irish traditions) I was ridiculously excited.  One idea I had was to incorporate Clara’s family’s tartan in the ring photos– I love the simplicity and symmetry here, too…

The floral arrangements and bouquets were gorgeous and from Debby Glamb and Karen McCarthy of The Flower Company.

Clara shared, “I love color! For the florals, we wanted them to be vibrant and elegant– we were even able to bring in a bit of Scotland, hence the thistles mixed in among the roses.”

Clara smiled, “It’s funny because I was adamant about not wanting trumpet or mermaid style wedding gown, but the moment I put it on I went from ‘the dress is pretty’ to ‘I look amazing in this dress’ so I definitely learned not to write things off so early! We added straps and sleeves through lace appliques and we ended up with the most beautiful custom gown I will ever wear! I could not have been more happy with it.”

DC area wedding boutique, Love Couture Bridal in Potomac, Maryland was where Clara said yes to the dress!  The ribbon is almost tied…

Clara continued, “I also was very excited to get to wear the crown that was hand-made by my great-great aunt for my grandmother’s wedding day. The fur was a last minute addition from Pedram’s mom that I borrowed in case I got cold.”

Clara you are so beautiful!!!

Clara shared, “Pedram and I love colder weather and vibrant colors so having an autumn wedding in the mountains was really perfect for us.  We chose the Highland Lodge at Liberty Mountain Resort because it was the perfect location between our parents’ homes and just the overall scenery and look worked for us.  We wanted to go with a neutral color palette for the attire so that the flowers would stand out and to go along with the strong fall colors in the background.”

Mission accomplished 🙂

While I love more candid and natural photos I also enjoy posed photos that capture the best angles and lighting on the subjects and scenery– wow, ladies!

Pedram’s sister is thirteen years younger than he and his twin brother.  I pulled her aside and grabbed a few shots of just her while we waited for others to arrive.  I love all of the color in this one!  She’s rocking the dress and hair, too!

Now it’s Pedram’s turn in the spot light.  Clara shared, “He’s a man of few words but can be serious or a clown depending on the situation and I love that about him. ”

He was definitely more on the serious side in the morning as he prepared for the wedding. 😉

Here Pedram’s friends toast him…

When Pedram saw a few of the photos he had one word to say, “Magic.”  🙂

Here is a more traditional portrait of him– I love how distinguished and dapper he looks– navy blue suits are one of my favorites!

Clara shared, “Pedram and I really balance each other out.  He is relaxed and down to earth, I am more concerned about the details but also a dreamer. He brings me back to earth when I get too stressed, and I make him less serious.  Together we are both ambitious people and want to do well in our separate fields so we support each other in working to achieve goals.”

I love the architectural lines in this photo and think it captures his serious, driven side…

Pedram shared, “My favorite part of Liberty Mountain Resort was the scenery and the surrounding space.”  Here you can see that great big sky and the fall foliage on the mountains…

Here Pedram rests his arm on his twin brother!  I love this classic portrait of Pedram and his groomsmen– it looks so timeless and cool…

Time for the first look!

Clara shared, “When I first saw Pedram, I thought that he looked extremely handsome and that I was so excited to spend the rest of my life with him!”

He was so over the top happy!!!  The guy who barely spoke or cracked a smile all morning was absolutely beaming!

Pedram shared, “When I first saw her I thought that she looked very beautiful in her wedding dress, she looked so pretty!!!”

He especially loved her hair, which I thought was adorable… 

Clara shared, “The fall view was perfect!  So colorful and more than we could have ever imagined!”

They really wanted a Scottish feel to their romantic wedding photos and I kept that in mind.  Here I got down low, nearly in the water haha, to really emphasis this minding stream and lush green mounds of grass.  (I had actually traveled to Scotland recently and knew just what to be on the lookout for…)

I knew how much Clara and Pedram love color and how key it is to both of their cultural heritages and wanted to bring in a ton of red from the fall foliage into this portrait.  I love their expressions here– how happy are they?

Pedram opened up a little, “I wanted to make Clara my partner because I love her and love spending time with her.  I love making her laugh and also bothering her which she makes too easy for me, haha!”

He continued, “She is pretty, I love her smile and eyes and she’s also smart, except not as smart in math (we started hanging out when I tutored her in calculus).”

He went on, “She can be strong-willed and high-strung.” (Clara is now laughing hysterically).  He concludes, “Clara is just Clara, and I’m looking forward to continuing our lives together.”

I love to play with unique perspectives, leading lines, saturated color and reflections…  This shot captures a bit of each:

Clara reminisced a little, “I fell for Pedram slowly, (since I thought that him asking me out in high school was actually a joke and didn’t realize he was serious until a month later. This is why you don’t ask people out over facebook everyone, haaa).”

She continued more seriously, “I fell for him because he’s kind and relaxed and balances my personality well, even though he can be a pain sometimes. He’s very laid back and relaxed most of the time.  I also really appreciate that he is responsible, driven and a good cook!”

She smiled, “He always makes sure that I feel comfortable, and is always making me laugh and slow down a little to enjoy life.”

It’s interesting for me to see how many of my couples say that exploring the grounds together as I capture photographs is one of their favorite parts of their wedding day!  Clara and Pedram shared the same when I asked them to look back on their day.

Clara shared, “Our favorite parts of the wedding day were taking pictures alone together and hanging out with our friends. Taking pictures together was nice to just get to enjoy some quality time alone and get an opportunity to talk to each other.”

I knew they were all about the epic scenery and fall leaves so I incorporated both in to my photos often!

Haaaa!  Now this one started out as a sketch that I created before their wedding– I knew they would have a bagpiper there and envisioned really bringing Scotland into their photos by having them framed in a colorful scene with a bag piper!  When I saw that he had arrived I asked him if he would mind serenading the couple before the ceremony started– he agreed!

Clara shared, “The moment with the bagpiper is something I never would have thought of or expected but it added so much to the day!   I used to step dance so I used some of that with what I know of highland dancing (which is not much). It is something I think is totally unique to our day and always makes me smile when I think of it.”

So far my photos have really showed the Celtic side of things, but the ceremony and reception incorporates a rich, Persian and Afghan flavor!   Pedram laughed, “As one of our guests said, attending our wedding was a total U.N. event!”

Clara shared, “I was excited to see the finished Sofreh table since we chose come pieces, but hadn’t seen it all together yet.”

This is another idea that I sketched out prior to the ceremony.  I knew there would be a mirror on the table and wanted to somehow capture their reflections in it!  Wait until you see all of these amazing traditions!!!!

As guests arrived to the sounds of bagpipes, they also arrived dressed in traditional attire.  There were kilts and tartan garb along with chic, modern Persian attire, too…

Clara’s father wore a kilt with the family tartan as he gave Clara’s hand to Pedram.  I love the look on Pedram’s father’s eyes as he watches the exchange.

And this is why they call it the Highland Lodge— wow, spectacular!

Clara explained, “Women hold a cloth over the couple, sprinkling sugar over it to sweeten the marriage and protect from evil.  The women are chosen as important women to the couple.  These are traditions that are both Afghan and Persian.”

Here Clara and Pedram’s sisters hold the cloth as one of the bridesmaids rubs the sugar cones together.  Many others participated in these parts of the ceremony.

Here guests from Pedram’s family watch as Clara and Pedram partake in the wedding traditions.  I could not get over the beauty of these women, they were all stunning!

Clara explained, “Holding hands for me was a way to quietly show my excitement about finally marrying him after almost 8 years but also reassuring that it was happening, finally here, and we had actually pulled it off.”

Pedram shared, “It felt nice to hold Clara’s hand.” 🙂

Clara shared, “Traditionally those gifts are part of a dowry to follow the couple throughout their marriage.  The necklace was from Afghanistan and is beautiful pieces of Lapis Lazuli with gold veins running through!”

As an art-lover I was fascinated by the stone and intersted to learn that it is the same type of stone used to carve Faberge Eggs and King Tut’s funeral mask, among others!  Here Clara giggles as Pedram’s parents help with the necklace.  It was stunning!

Pedram shared, “I chose to have a Star Trek opening because it seemed fitting.  It was a unique way for me to share a vow and I pulled it off.” 🙂

Clara explained, “Pedram’s twin, Noveed made sure the music turned on and then off at the right moments, which Clara also thought was great since they have all known each other since freshman year of high school.”

She continued, “I wasn’t expecting it, but he had told me that he was going to do something nerdy and if that was okay, and I said it was. Then the day of he said he wanted to do it to music, and I asked if it was necessary and it was not, so I asked if it would enhance it, which it would, so I said sure.”

She concluded, “I was totally not expecting that, but he has been trying to get me to get into Star Trek since we started dating and I didn’t seriously start watching it through until right before the wedding. I thought his reference was just perfect.”

Pedram shared, “I chose the Celtic wedding band.”  Love it!

Clara and Pedram were wed by a close family friend of Clara’s.  She had seen her grow up and beamed throughout the very personal ceremony.

The kiss! For this photo I really wanted to emphasize the detailing of Clara’s dress, the moody sky, the expressions on the bridesmaids and father’s faces as well as the moment of the kiss as well…

Husband and wife…

Table photographs following the wedding ceremony are a tradition on both sides of Pedram’s family.

Clara explained, “Each household comes up to congratulate the bride and groom, share their gifts and take a picture with the bride and groom and the ceremony table.”

I’m not sure how many total posed Sofreh Aghd photos I captured but it was a lot!  This candid photo was one of my favorite as it showed members of both Clara and Pedram’s family and they were interacting together so beautifully.  It has an authentic, UN feel to it.  😉

Then a group of Celts joined the Sofreh!  So freaking cool…

Pedram was welcomed into the family with a matching patch.  

Geese passed overhead.  There is something so universal about migrating birds and their movement with the changing seasons– no matter where you are in the world you will see this…

Wow, what a sky!!!

Karen Rodkey outdid herself again with this masterpiece!  She is so talented and I love seeing how unique each one of her cakes is!

Clara shared, “We wanted to keep the Scottish theme, so we asked the baker to use colors of thistle when decorating it and she came up with that simple, beautiful design.”

Clara shared, “We chose ‘Fly Me to the Moon‘ because we both love Frank Sinatra and Pedram, being in the aerospace industry, has always joked about getting married on the moon, which Clara has always shot down. So it seemed like a good compromise, haha!”

Clara shared, “I always associated our father-daughter song with my summers spent with my dad’s family and his parents, who passed away a few years ago.  It felt like a good song to remember them, celebrate them and this great event, and brought back memories of good times growing up. And it’s just such a great song.”

Pedram added, “Journey is my mom’s favorite band, we listened to them together on road trips growing up.”

Here Pedram’s mom kisses his cheek and Clara sings with her father…

Now that’s a cake!  I love how you can see both the thistles and traditional Persian and Afghan candles and honey!

Party time!

Model United Nations wedding Dance Party!!! A few of my shots from the dance floor– how much fun are these people having?

Watch out this might make you a little dizzy, haaaa!  

Clara shared, “The dance party was fun and only so much was planned by us! The Hava Nagila was unplanned and thrown together by some of Pedram’s oldest friends, but definitely added to the night and the experience!” Also the U.N. feel!!!  Here Pedram’s twin is up on the chair…

It was raining at the end of the night, Pedram and Clara stepped outside and cooled off a little bit!

I really liked this intergalactic look, especially for a Star Trek loving aerospace engineer and his wife!  Fly me to the moon!!!

Clara and Pedram– you two are such total individuals and I loved capturing all of the unique elements of your wedding from the fun cultural elements to all of the beautiful colors and scenery, wow what a day!  I’m so glad that you thought working with me was easy and fun– thanks for choosing to have me by your sides!  I hope that these photos are just as vibrant, fun and individualized as you had hoped!   I can’t wait to hear what you think!   Please do comment below!  🙂

Clara O’ShaughnessyDecember 21, 2017 - 10:55 pm

Lisa, these are absolutely beautiful and we love them so much!! Thank you so much for capturing all of these amazing different elements of our special day!! We can’t wait to share these!!!

Vietnam Wedding PhotographerJanuary 9, 2018 - 11:10 pm

The photos are excellent

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