October 20, 2020

Bigfork Family Photographer, The Nickels Family

This multi-generational family portrait session with the Nickels wasn't the first time I'd photographed people and their pets, but it was the first time I had someone bring their handsome feline outside for some photos. In true cat fashion "Duke" put up with the camera for exactly two photos before he made it clear he was done, but he was a consummate professional up to that point. I also got to meet Penny and her human, and the whole Nickels clan. We spent some time at their new residence and then headed over to Wayfarers State Park for the unrivaled views of Flathead Lake. It's always such a pleasure to explore new areas of the Flathead Valley I've not been to with vacationers and new residents alike.

October 19, 2020

Glacier National Park Portrait Photographer, Chacey & Asia

Having grown up in Texas, hearing a Texas accent can act as an odd sort of comfort blanket. And that is just how it was this chilly morning for these ladies hailing from North Texas. Another referral from the always too-kind Jennifer Vernarsky, Chacey and Asia were on a last-gasp-of-summer anniversary/birthday whirlwind vacation to Northwest Montana and Chacey wanted to surprise Asia with a photo session.

We met up at Apgar Village in Glacier National Park, and while the early morning clouds and fog obscured the mountains, it made the setting no less dreamy and surreal for a quick min-session. They were so fun to work with, and their smiles offered all the warmth needed in the upper-30s temperatures we were dealing with. We lamented the lack of decent Tex-Mex restaurants in Montana—and really anywhere but Texas—and other superior, non-Tex-Mex dining opportunities in the Flathead Valley.

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.

March 29, 2020

Sandpoint Family & Maternity Photographer, the Stuarts

Like a lot of states around the country, Montana is now under a 'stay-at-home' order in hopes of combatting the spread of the Coronavirus. Thankfully, prior to that happening I was able to escape with the family to the in-laws in Northern Idaho for some extreme social distancing and some maternity photos in anticipation of another nephew!

Family photos can be tricky with a rambunctious two-year-old and a brother-in-law who sometimes acts like a two-year-old (joking!) but here's a little secret. Silly kiddos are infinitely more stressful on the family—and let's be honest, the mom primarily—than they are for the photographer. Oftentimes my favorite photos from family sessions are when the kid(s) are just goofing off and not following my direction or the pleas of their parents.

Anyway, I can't wait to meet the latest addition to our family, with the hope all of this COVID-19 stuff is largely behind us in a few months and life has returned to some semblance of "normal."

January 21, 2020

West Glacier Styled Portrait Session

It's always a delight to get a call or text from a fellow photographer with an invitation to join them on a styled shoot, no matter how low-key it may be. And that is just what happened with this particular shoot.

Amber—of Amber Lynn Photography—texted me to see if I wanted to head out to West Glacier for a quick styled shoot featuring a cheapo $30 sheer sparkly dress, the Northwest Montana Snow, a fellow photographer—also an Amber—as model, hair, and makeup from Bridal Bliss, and florals from Farm-to-Market Floral. How could I say no?!

For my second time doing portraits of an individual in freezing temperatures in the middle of January, I'm really quite happy with the results.

January 17, 2020

Glacier National Park Engagement Photographer, Anna & Lex

Numb hands, full hearts, can't lose. This late December engagement session for Anna & Lex was appropriately chilly—considering the time of year—but that didn't stop us from having a great time. I always look forward to sharing Glacier National Park—if even just the tiniest slice of it—with my couples, especially when they've either not been there at all, or only once before a long time ago.

For this engagement session, we started in downtown Whitefish to utilize the postcard-perfect Central Ave. while it was still decorated for the holidays, and then made our way West Glacier and Apgar Village to take advantage of some of the most iconic backdrops in the state of Montana.

Thank you, Anna & Lex, for hanging out with me on the Saturday after Christmas, and I can't wait to party with you and your families this coming August at your wedding!

December 18, 2019

Kalispell Family Photographer, the Radabahs

There are few things more satisfying to a photographer when their clients refer friends and family to you. One thing that comes awfully close though is when a fellow photographer refers their past clients to you in an emergency. The amount of trust involved in such an act is something I take extremely seriously, so when my friend Kiralee texted me after being stricken with the flu to see if I was available to handle some family portraits for Sam and her family when they weren't able to reschedule I was extremely humbled and glad I was able to help her out. On top of that, Sam and her family were a hoot, and it was such a pleasure working with them for some late fall photos.

October 2, 2019

Whitefish Portrait Photographer, Windy & James

Did you know that you don't have to be recently engaged in order to get some portraits taken in a beautiful place? It's true! And Windy & James are here to prove it. They came all the way from a "small-town" in Texas—which just happens to be the same small-town my wife grew up in—to spend some time in Whitefish and wanted to commemorate their vacation with just the two of them. They were an absolute delight to work with as briefly strolled through downtown Whitefish and spoke of our favorite places in the Texas Hill Country.

June 25, 2019

Flathead Lake Engagement Photographer, Kelly & Adam

The nice thing about engagement sessions is it gives me a chance to meet the couple face-to-face. And after Kelly and Adam's session, I feel like we're old friends, and I can't wait for their intimate wedding at Adam's dad's house next year. We spent a couple of hours exploring the shores of Flathead Lake in and around Somers and Lakeside on the Northern part of the lake. They're such a fun couple, and Adam's dad is really turning his yard into a truly unique and beautiful venue.

We'll pick up this party where we left off next summer.

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

Copyright ©Matthew Wetzler 2008–2020