always been

But I never set out to be a photographer. I was (and still am!) going to be a writer. And then as I worked toward that writing goal, someone put a camera in my hand and asked me to try telling stories with something besides words. So with an English nerd's love for character and tone, a romantic's love for poignant beauty, and a realist's love for imperfection, I dove in.

meet LAURA

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always been a

That was back in 2010.

Since that time, photography has changed much of my life. It's brought me some of my dearest friends. It's reshaped the way my husband Danny and I view serving others. It has even literally taken me around the world. One thing that hasn't changed: my soul-stirring desire to tell stories that feel so real you're sure you knew them before you heard them. Or saw them. It's my privilege to tell those stories for my clients, and for the generations of their families still to come.

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Denie + Tyler – A Casements Wedding | Daytona Beach Wedding Photography

Tuesday, September 10th, 2013

She said she couldn’t wait to be called Mrs. Staley.

On their wedding day, Denie had to wait for a bit longer though, because a storm blew in at the exact time they were supposed to exchange their vows in front of The Casements, the place where she had always dreamed of getting married. But, symbolically, the rain dried up and the clouds rolled on past, and Denie and Tyler met on the steps in front of the river on an afternoon just as sunny and beautiful as their engagement session the month before. Just as they were supposed to. And then they were introduced: Dr. and Mrs. Bride and Groom. Forever a part of each other.

Denie had poured so much love and energy into making this day a beautiful one for all their family and friends. Beautiful is just the word for it.The Casements — John D. Rockefeller’s winter home on the Halifax — was the perfect backdrop for the elegant, vintage celebration Denie had in mind. Everything about it was just right: The antique furniture, the warm hardwood floors that reflected the light spilling in through the windows. It was heavenly.I thought Denie’s gown was just perfect for her.
So were the elegant Badgley Mischkas.As for Denie herself . . . well, I’m not sure beautiful is quite a strong enough word for how she looked that afternoon. Just a couple rooms away, Tyler got ready with his groomsmen.Once everyone was ready and the rain headed out to sea, the ceremony proceeded under a suddenly sunny sky — and it was beautiful, too.I got the feeling that Tyler was kinda ready to marry Denie. . . .And Denie left no one wondering whether she was ready to marry Tyler. There is nothing better than a bride beaming down the aisle.I just love this picture of Denie and Tyler with her parents in their first moments as a family!As the guests headed back to the tent, we spent a little time with the incredible bridal party.LOVE!Were those bridesmaids polka dotted dresses, cardigans, and pearls not the cutest bridesmaid style you’ve ever seen?!We had to get a few shots of just Tyler and his brothers. (Side note: Danny decided the Staley boys have so much fun together that we need to have five sons, too. . . .)Once we wrapped up with the bridal party, it was time for Denie and Tyler to get their modeling on. Because, really, these two. They are perfect together, and what happened next were some of our very favorite bride and groom portraits ever.Oh, Denie. Wow!This is, hands down, one of my favorite images that has ever come out of our cameras.You never know what kind of weather you’re going to get in Florida, but one thing is for certain: Stunning sunsets often follow rainstorms. Denie and Tyler had the most beautiful sunset to celebrate the first evening of their marriage.When we wrapped up the portraits, the prettiness wasn’t over. It was off to the reception tent, where Denie had poured her heart into some of the most lovely, vintage-inspired decorations I’ve seen at a wedding. Earlier in the afternoon, we had captured all the details.The cake from The Pastry Studio was, as always, stunning.Denie and Tyler made their grand entrance and went right into their first dance. Complete with happy tears.And then, of course, there was a party on the dance floor!And then the newlyweds bid everyone good evening and headed off hand in hand.See even more in their slideshow:

Denie and Tyler, we wish the two of you every imaginable happiness as you begin your life together!

~ Laura + Danny


Venue: The Casements
Bride’s Shoes: Badgley Mischka
Flowers: Details Flowers & Photography
Cake: The Pastry Studio
Catering: Frappes North
DJ: DJ Man Joe

  1. […] It feels more lasting, and it feels like a real accomplishment, and not only for us, but for Denie and Tyler, too — it was their gorgeous, mostly handcrafted wedding, after all, that got chosen as one […]

  2. […] The Casements I grew up driving by The Casements in Ormond Beach every week, loving the grand old house built by John D. Rockefeller and the beautiful garden overlooking the Halifax River, and now I believe it’s one of the prettiest settings for weddings in the Daytona Beach area. The bride and groom can get ready with their attendants inside the (oh-so-photogenic!) grand house, while the garden lawn provides a wonderful backdrop for the ceremony and reception; smaller receptions can be held indoors as well. To see Denie + Tyler’s vintage-inspired Casements wedding, click here. […]

  3. Tyler Staley says:

    Danny and Laura – you are the best photographers ever! Thank you so much for capturing the feeling of that day; marvelous!

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