I have known Jess ever since she and my younger sister were on the same gymnastics team in college. I used to tag along to each gymnastics competition with my camera and photograph the girls during their meets. I always knew the girls liked the photos, but little did I know how much Jess did. When I arrived on the day of her wedding she announced to me and the room how excited she was that I was there. Why? Well because ever since I had photographed her crazy talented gymnastics tricks back during our college years, she had always dreamed of me photographing her wedding one day! Naturally this filled my heart and my eyes with some waterworks to hear such a compliment because looking back on those college photos when I first got my camera and started dabbling in photography, those pictures were not my best. But it made me so happy to hear this girl say that because to me that meant she believed in me and my potential as a photographer.
Not only was I impressed by her gymnastics skills in the past, but Jess also had another skill... She was building an amazing videography business and now she does some of the most beautiful wedding videos I have ever seen. I knew walking into her hotel room that day that this wedding would be planned to perfection with every detail perfectly placed and the lighting would be just right for every scenario. I was not wrong! Her stunning dress was hung by a giant window overlooking the city of Philadelphia emitting the most perfect soft light that complimented every bit of fabric the dress was made from. Her shoes and jewelry were displayed beneath creating the already perfect photo scenario I didn't have to stage myself. Needless to say, Jess made my job very easy that day. Regardless of all the perfect details and lighting, Jess and Alex were the perfect couple to photograph. It was endless smiles all day and each tear, laugh and smile was so truly genuine. They were in their own world and I was just there to photograph it, how lucky was I?
Their first look was one of the best of my career. As Alex stood facing City Hall in the middle of Broad Street cars were whizzing by beeping and people were cheering as his bride slowly walked up behind him. After moments of suspense, he finally turned around to see his soon to be wife and the expression on his face was one I will never forget. There was excitement, disbelief, the most ecstatic smile and then finally tears of joyfulness. People standing by on the sidewalks were cheering along with the wedding party and the amazing energy was absolutely flowing through every one. If I didn't know from the first ten minutes I was at this wedding that it was going to be nothing short of amazing, I certainly knew now. We took the wedding party for some photos in a few historic spots than stole away the bride and groom for pictures in Dilworth Park in front of City Hall where this courageous bride walked onto an ice rink for us to get the perfect shot. Like I said, they were nothing short of amazing.
Jess and Alex were married at the Lucy in a room so delightfully decorated with sheer white fabric draping from the ceilings and an aisle leading to the arch with handmade lanterns by her stepfather. I can't even begin to describe the perfection that was the handmade arch draped in winter flowers surrounded by subtle greenery handing from the lights above. Every detail was perfect, just as I had known it would be. From the moment Jess entered the room to walk down the aisle, the tears began flowing, even from me! Their vows were so heartfelt and true to who they were as a couple, I found myself getting so caught up in the moment I may have let a tear drop from behind my camera.
If you thought the beginning of the day was amazing, it got better. The couple entered the room as husband and wife with the most amazing choreographed dance I have ever seen. There were was the gracefulness of beauty and the beast as they dance in the ballroom. There were lifts and spins that reminded you of an old Hollywood musical and to top it off, they ended their dance with the most perfect dip with a canon explosion of rose petals that fell upon them. Truly perfection.
Throughout the night there was never a moment where the couple wasn't smiling, laughing or just truly enjoying their wedding day. Jess and Alex were the picture of a perfect wedding day couple. They went with the flow, they had fun, they truly enjoyed their day and everyone could see it. I would photograph the Diggory wedding 100 times over just to relive the energy and love that was there that day. This couple truly set my expectations for 2020 to a whole new level. I am challenging myself to bring their energy to each wedding I photograph and maybe even get some more brides to walk on ice, who knows!
To see their full gallery, click the link below!
Alex & Jess Diggory
Venue: The Lucy/Cescaphe Event Group
Photographer: Ashley Griffin Photography
2nd Photographer: Tyler Boyle Photography
Photobooth:The Yellow Mirror
Videographer: Video City Productions
Wedding Dress: Elizabeth Johns
Veil: Elizabeth Johns
Bridesmaid Dresses: Lulus.com
Flowers: Charity's Florist
Makeup/Hair: Elizabeth Jacobs
Caterer: Cescaphe Events Group
Cake: Cescaphe Events Group
DJ: Centerstage Entertainment
Officiant: Evermore Officiant Services