October 14, 2020

Glacier National Park Wedding Photographer, Allyn & Nicholas

Allyn and Nicholas were my first of two wedding couples from Illinois in the span of five days, and my first wedding that actually took place inside Glacier National Park. Though initially, that was not the plan. Originally I should've been making this blog post this past spring. Of course, we all know what happened throughout the world in March. COVID lock-downs for everyone! Thankfully they didn't allow that to completely scuttle their dreams of a Montana wedding and they rescheduled for this fall and it couldn't have been more perfect. Yes, there was intermittent rain, yes there ominous clouds that obscured the mountains occasionally. But without rain, you can't have a rainbow. A rainbow that spanned Lake McDonald just as they said their wedding vows. If that isn't a sign of a blessed marriage, I don't know what is.

While they weren't technically eloping, they had a sort of 'deluxe elopement' with a total headcount of fewer than twenty people with a ceremony at the Apgar Amphitheatre, portraits in that general vicinity thereafter, and finally a dinner to close out the festivities.

I am so glad the pandemic didn't spoil my chance to hangout and get to know Allyn and Nicholas more, and can't wait for them to come back and visit—hopefully often—in the future!

Vendors

Venue(s): Glacier National Park Apgar Amphitheater, Grouse Mountain Lodge / Transportation: Montana Trolley Co. / Bakery: Delectable Desserts & Catering / Hair & Makeup: Brittany Brennan / Flowers: Southern Blooms Co.

October 12, 2020

Whitefish Wedding Photographer, Tasha & Korey

I was fortunate to meet Tasha at the My Montana Wedding Inspiration Expo last fall. She was planning a modest, largely D.I.Y. wedding at North 40 Resort between Columbia Falls and Whitefish, and convenient for me just five minutes from my house!

Thanks to the modest size of the wedding and being comprised of primarily Tasha & Korey's immediate and extended family they were thankfully able to avoid much disruption to their plans due to COVID-19, and everything went off without a hitch. It was so much fun to hang out with them and their families during what was a laid back, fun- and love-filled evening among the trees.

In the not-to-distant future I'm looking forward to traipsing around Glacier National Park with this super friendly couple for an epic adventure portraits session.

Vendors

Venue: North Forty Resort / Catering: Porteus BBQ / Bakery: Cakes by Debi / Dress: Mimi's Bridal / Jewelry: The Electric Buffalo

October 3, 2020

Whitefish Family Photographer, The Ahmad Family

I was fortunate to spend this chilly morning with the Ahmad family at Depot Park and Whitefish City Beach documenting their late-summer family getaway to Northwest Montana. Little A. wasn't super comfortable in front of the camera for a lot of the session, but once she saw the water at City Beach and got to take a little walk with her brother and grandmother she perked right up and started grinning from ear-to-ear. They mentioned that they are planning a potential permanent move to Montana, and I can't wait to welcome them if they're able to make that happen.

September 30, 2020

Alpine Theatre Project’s Operalesque 3

This month I was blessed to have the opportunity to document Alpine Theatre Project's "Operalesque 3"—a sexy combination of opera and burlesque—in the truly unique settings of the Viking Creek Wetland Preserve. As you might imagine with restrictions on indoor performances, the performing arts community here, and everywhere, has been hit particularly hard with no opportunity to perform in the concert halls, performing arts centers, and theaters they're used to.

The Operalesque performances at ATP's Garage were already something unique and special, and beyond anything, I ever expected to be able to experience, particularly in Northwest Montana. The creativity ATP has exhibited with this production bringing it out into nature was an experience I don't think anyone who attended is likely to forget any time soon.

Shoutout to the amazing cast consisting of Glen Seven Allen, Jessica Fishenfeld, Marcy Richardson, Melanie Long, Darren Stokes, and Billy Thompson.

This isn't the first time they've found to make sure that "the show must go on." This past spring the high school production of Mel Brook's "Young Frankenstein" was converted to the individual performers recording their parts on a green screen in isolation, which was then edited into a digital production.

September 30, 2020

Glacier National Park Portrait Photographer, Charlotte & Dennis

The great thing about the photographer community most places I've experienced, and especially here in the Flathead Valley, is that its generally a close-knit community where people are quick to refer out jobs when they're already booked. I have Jennifer Vernasrky to thank for the opportunity to hang out with Charlotte and Dennis. Though apparently, it was the inclusion of my Xbox Gamertag in my website bio that actually sealed the deal for Dennis.

The only element of the evening that wasn't according to plan was the smoke from wildfires throughout Northern California, Washington, and Idaho blowing into the area the week they were here. No matter. Smoke or no smoke, Glacier National Park is still a dreamy landscape in which to spend time.

September 4, 2020

Glacier National Park Photographer, Adventure Portrait Styled Shoot

Styled shoots are a great way to build ones photography portfolio. One thing I discovered when I first moved to northwest Montana was I had trouble convincing prospective clients I could take the epic Montana photos they craved when the only examples of photos I had were of the hills of the Texas hill country filled with oak trees. That is nothing against the Texas Hill Country mind you—after all my own wedding took place in a hill country setting and it was an amazing, low-key party enjoyed by all—but the central Texas is lacking in the amazing mountain vistas and alpine forests.

So naturally when I got a call from fellow photographer Cammi of So Striking Studio inviting me to tag along on a styled shoot she'd put together at a couple of iconic Glacier National Park locations how could I say no?!

While it was a tad breezy and our poor model got a little chilly was the sun began to set, I truly don't think it could have gone any better than it did. It was one of those photo shoots where I just couldn't wait to get home to get the images downloaded to start working on them.

Special thanks to Cammi for putting this shoot together, Bridal Bliss Hair & Makeup with Lana for hair & makeup, and The Re-Finery in Kalispell for the stunning vintage white dress you see in the first batch of photos in this post.

September 2, 2020

West Glacier Family Photographer – Fisher-Malle Family

I do a lot of talking about how awesome it is to meet folks from all over the country who come to Montana for weddings, family reunions, or just your standard vacation. What I don't often talk about is hanging out and documenting the lives of the friends we've made here in Montana. But no more! Nick & Skotti's daughter was in my daughter's first- and second-grade classes and they've become good friends. So naturally when Skotti hit me up for some potential family photos I naturally jumped at the chance. Of course it was chillier than expected—it was in the mid-40s on this late August morning—which made it necessary to just power through, but we all managed!

August 21, 2020

Glacier National Park Engagement Photographer, Meredith & John

Meredith & John came all the way from New York to escape the crowds of the city and to document their engagement in the last best place, Montana. It's a shame they only had a few days in Whitefish, as we could've spent so many more hours traipsing around to Glacier National Park's copious amounts of epic views. Alas, with the limited time we had to "make do" with sticking to West Glacier and Lake McDonald. I don't think anyone will take pity on them for that 'restriction.' Meredith and John, thank you so much for choosing me for your engagement photos, and best of luck as you begin the in-depth process of wedding planning. And if that gets overwhelming come on back to Montana and elope! 🙂

August 19, 2020

Kalispell Family Photographer, The Brown Family

I probably sound like a broken record, but one of the perks of being a photographer in an area that is such a destination for so many people is I get to meet and hang out with people from all over the country. The Brown family contacted me in hopes of getting some photos to document their trip that took them literally all over the western half of Montana, and culminated in a visit to the Flathead Valley. They made the trip from Mississippi, which was funny because it was the day after Shona & Bradley's wedding, and they live in Mississippi. It's as the song from the Disney ride says, "it's a small world after all."

August 17, 2020

Whitefish Wedding Photographer, Shona & Bradley

Like just about everyone in the wedding business this year, my summer bookings were all made prior to the worldwide pandemic created by COVID-19. Naturally, this placed a lot of wedding plans up in the air, and while Shona and Bradley were traveling from out-of-state, their plans were always for a more intimate wedding in the glorious outdoors that can be found at Lone Pine State Park and the beautiful grounds of Conrad Mansion in Kalispell. Also, any wedding where a friendly game of bocce ball breaks out is a successful wedding in my book. Congratulations to Shona & Bradley, thank you so much for including me in the festivities.

Shout out to this awesome group of vendors who coordinated on an amazing evening: Planner: Wise Wedding & Event Planning / Venue(s): Lone Pine State Park, Conrad Mansion Museum / Hair & Makeup: Alexis Raab / Florals: Memories in Blossom / Jewelry: Albriton's Jewelry (Jackson, MS) / Catering & Bakery: Delectable Catering and Desserts / Band: Eric Alan Duo / Rentals: The Party Store

Prints & Canvas

Matt Wetzler is an editorial, motorsport, portrait, and destination wedding photographer based in Northwest Montana.

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