The first time I met Ryan, we were traveling to Chicago to document a wedding, I was shooting pictures, and he was shooting video with Mike Varel.  Ryan and Mike insisted on carrying our heavy bags of eqipment through security in the airport.  My first impression of Ryan was that he was a guy who was dedicated to doing good for others.  A gentleman.  Fast forward a few years, and I get an email from Ryan saying that he is in love with a girl named Krista,  engaged, and that they had chosen me to document their wedding.  I was completely honored and I have been anticipating Ryan and Krista’s wedding all year.

Part of Ryan and Krista’s story is that they were bonded by grief.  Within the same period of time, Ryan lost his dad, and Krista lost her mom and her dad within a short period of time.  Both Ryan and Krista had come form loving and strong families, and this loss of their parents was devastating.  This was a bittersweet wedding day.  It was a celebration, with a massive community of loving support around them, celebrating their marriage.  It was also very difficult to get through at times.

I have loved getting to know Krista.  We all had dinner a few weeks before the wedding and she said something like, “whenever I get overwhelmed, I just want to be in his arms”.  That was a unifying theme throughout the day- that Krista found comfort and relief in Ryan’s presence.  I have so much respect and affection for these two.  I am honored that I got to get so close.  Here is a look into their wedding day…

Krista wore her mom’s wedding ring her right hand.  I loved this moment when she explained it to her flower girl

A kiss from her aunt

Krista needed some space and took some time to be alone in her big walk-in closet.  Her aunt Carla met her there and talked with her and prayed with her.  Shortly after, her sisters and friends came in and the tears turned to laughter.

Jewel’s photos of Ryan below.  Here he is with two of his brothers

This was hilarious.  There was a huge party bus of girls celebrating their quimceanera.  They were pretty enamored with Krista.  Jewel’s picture below

The time before the wedding was hard for Krista.  Here her sisters comfort her and then quickly their conversation turns into laughter as they think about what their dad would be saying if he were here.

Jewel’s photo below

Ryan’s mom and sister talk with Krista’s aunt

Krista’s uncle walked her down the aisle

Mattie, Krista’s younger sister, was wearing their dad’ s ring

Jewel’s photo below

Jewel’s photo below



  • Becca…I love the authenticity of this post. You didn’t try to manipulate or change the feel of what really happened that day. I really love the image of Krista and her aunt sitting in her closet. I also love the image of Krista laying on her sisters before the ceremony. And, there is just something about that first portrait of Krista in her home (with the natural light) that is so telling of her. I’ve looked at this post several times over the past few days letting it sink in. And every time that portrait speaks something very genuine to me. Some people look at the camera wanting to just look good, but there is real emotion in her eyes that evokes a lot in me when I look at it. . . Anyways, I appreciate the way you told this story in this space.