• Oh, hi there…

    Welcome to my blog!

    Here you'll find my latest photography projects, life updates, and musings. May I suggest fixing yourself a yummy latte to savor whilst you peruse?

    Please contact me if you'd like more information.

    I hope you'll enjoy.

    xo
    Tennile

Christina and James | Chicago Courthouse Wedding Photography

These two beautiful people are in the process of planning their wedding (but, just between you and me, they kinda already locked it down).

There are plenty of really good reasons to seal the deal prior to having your big dream wedding, and there is something sweet about having an intimate ceremony first.

If you plan to have a destination wedding, sometimes it can be necessary, or easier, to have the legal ceremony at home. If finances are a factor, a city hall wedding may make more sense. Perhaps you and your love have a wedding date set, but you opt for a no-frills ceremony first, in order to include a beloved relative who may not be able to witness your nuptials otherwise. Or sometimes, two adventurers from different parts of the world fall in love, and can’t wait to commit to each other, even before their traditional celebration.

Whatever the reason, I can tell you from personal experience that courthouse ceremonies, city hall weddings, and elopements are definitely a good idea, and in no way inhibit you from enjoying a more grand celebration later. (And, from a professional standpoint, I can tell you that I love shooting all shapes and sizes of weddings!) :)

As Christina and James prove, courthouse weddings can be classy, stylish, and moving.

Bunnies and Birds | Chicago Nature Photographer

I love getting bundled up and going for long walks in the snow. It can be so great to get out in the fresh air, with your flip-top mitts on, and take pictures of adorable bunnies and birds. I’ll admit that sometimes Ken has to drag me out, or bribe me with hot chocolate, but in the end I’m always very glad I went. :)

xo

Tennile

Hello, 2015!

Happy New Year!

I think today I’ll do a round up of the personal moments, from 2014, that have helped me grow as an individual, and some that were just great fun.

The most personally significant thing I did in 2014 was to walk with, and fundraise for, The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. I have a lump in my throat just typing that sentence; it was an incredibly emotional experience. Initially, I registered for the walk, thinking I would make a donation, but not fundraise since I wasn’t sure I’d be able to raise much.

Instead, I decided to put my fundraising page out there, without any expectations, and see what might come. Together, Ken and I raised over $1400 in memory of my brother, Shelby, who is missed everyday. Thank you so much to all who donated! We are so touched by your compassionate support.

I think in 2015, we may be able to do even better. In fact, if you want to donate, it’s not too late! My page is still up and running.

And, here’s an iPhone photo of us at the walk.

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Ken and I love getting to spend time with my brother, Jordan. I cry like a baby every time he goes home to Ontario (doesn’t matter who might be there to witness it. Sorry Jord, I have no shame!). He is my friend, my critic, and one of my biggest fans in one adorable package, and I hope I’m the same to him. And, now for another too-honest Instagram photo, from our night of culture, seeing Iphigenia in Aulis (I voted for Looking Glass Alice, but Ken and Jordan outvoted me).

Oh, and he’s also my wonder twin (we are not twins but everyone assumes we are). See any resemblance?

#siblingselfie ???? #myheart

A photo posted by Tennile Sunday (@tennilesunday) on

We also had the opportunity to go to Panama together in December and January (so it still counts as 2014), and look what we saw while were there! Loads of white-tipped reef sharks! If you’ve read my about page, you’ll be aware of my deep affinity for sharks. This was basically a dream come true. I promise you, they were much, much larger than this image can convey! (Photo and video by Ken, and his amazing free-diving abilities.)

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Oh, and we also did an inexplicably frigid overnight hike of Volcan Baru, an intensely steep volcano. Here they are at the top:

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As I have for the past two years, I volunteered with the Chicago Photography Center‘s Outreach program, helping facilitate a photography workshop to help homeless, and formerly homeless people express themselves artistically and explore their creative talents. These photographers inspire me on every possible level — they do incredible work with the most basic of gear (think disposable cameras). They each have such unique ways of seeing the world, and they are all persevering and determined. I love every minute I spend with these creative souls and I hope they know how much they have all influenced me, and my work.

This year I helped curate the gallery opening to display the works of our program’s participants. It was an incredible experience, and wonderful to see the photographers receive the attention they so deserve.

Pictured here are three of our exceedingly gifted participants, and one very talented and dedicated volunteer.

Works by Renée Jackson:

Works by David Turow:

Works by Stephanie Riley (yes, these photos were taken with disposable film cameras, it’s unbelievable, I know!):

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I also offered my services to the Lincoln Park Community Shelter, for their yearly fundraiser, Taste of Fall, at which they raised several thousand dollars toward supporting the shelter. Look at all of those apartment doors just waiting to be unlocked!

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Recently, I got together with Heidi, the master knitter and maker behind Hands Occupied. I photographed a fundraiser she hosted at the cutesy wool shop, Nina, in Chicago’s Wicker Park. Heidi’s “Make the World Better with a Sweater” party was in support of Save the Children. A most excellent party, for a very good cause!

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I ran the following short races:

– Chicago Spring 10k (ran this with a bad case of the flu)
– Ravenswood 5k (head cold)
– Bucktown 5k (healthy!)
– Hot Chocolate Run 15k (can’t even express to you how many problems. ;) I’m a mess!)

I couldn’t run for three weeks leading up to my 15k. If you’re a runner, you know that a three week pause is a horrible idea.

I didn’t set a new PR. Actually, I think I set a new PW. That’s a thing, right?

But, I ran the full race, when I could have cut it short and ran the 5k with Ken. I kept a reasonable pace, had fun, and reminded myself that it was a beautiful day for a run, even though it wasn’t going according to plan. I’m normally extremely hard on myself when I don’t meet my own expectations, so this new-found relaxed attitude was not only a complete shock to me, but also a very welcome change.

In 2015, I plan to get myself to a state where I can safely run longer races, and take on more challenging training.

Here I am, eating my 15k finisher’s medal (I’m all about the hopelessly honest iPhone shots Ken takes).

And, as always, I’m so thankful to have such amazing clients. It means so much that you trust me with your memories. Here’s one of my favorites, from my recent post of Andrea and Colin’s wedding reception:

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I feel really lucky to have spent 2014 with people I love, and people who inspire me, doing things I enjoy, and things that may have made even the smallest positive impact in the world around me. I’m looking forward to what 2015 brings.

Here’s wishing you all a great new year!

xo

Tennile

 

 

 

 

Andrea and Colin | Sofitel, Chicago | Wedding Photographer

Most of the time, wedding receptions don’t get much love on the blog. It’s sad, but true. I try to keep my posts from getting too gargantuan, so only a few photos from each part of the day make the cut.

That’s why I’m excited about this particular post! You may remember that Andrea and Colin were married in an intimate courthouse ceremony back in March — well, the fun didn’t end there! They threw a fabulous party in August, to celebrate their nuptials with friends and family. I don’t use the word “party” lightly, either.

Prior to this event, I had never witnessed a bride do the limbo, while rocking 4-inch Manolo’s (and not spilling even a drop of her red wine!). Colin, and his groomsmen, wore socks featuring his favorite muppet, Animal, and once the dancing began, the significance was abundantly clear: These men are wild — particularly the groom!

This was one of the most outrageously fun wedding receptions I’ve ever shot/danced at, and I’m happy to have the opportunity tell the story of the evening, and to feature both the sweet, and hilarious moments. I hope you’ll enjoy!

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A little bribery never hurts. ;)

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Andrea and Colin, you are a blast, and I absolutely loved shooting your party!

xo

Tennile

Dress: MLV
December 19, 2014 - 9:12 pm

Amy Sheeder - What a beautiful wedding and family, no doubt they will create a beautiful life. Beautiful photography!

Wildflower Wedding Inspiration | North Pond Wedding Photographer

Today is my blog’s second birthday! That is, it’s the second anniversary of my first post on this blog. I wanted to share something pretty, and special today, and this wildflower inspired wedding shoot is just the thing!

I had the idea for the shoot while Ken and I were walking through North Pond this summer — I love the pond year round, but it’s hard not to love summertime best. The flowers totally take over, and the light seems to make everything shimmer — sometimes, I find myself thinking of what a perfect place it would be for a wedding, so I went ahead and put together a shoot to bring my ideas to life.

The talented Kpoene, from Mignonette Bridal, dressed our model, Meg, in her gorgeous “Andrea” gown, and adorned her in delicate, flowered accessories, and a goddess-like leave-motif crown — it was exactly the beautiful, understated style I was dreaming of.

It rained during the shoot, which cut short our tablescape shots, but added to the atmosphere, giving it a fresh and uncontrolled look – I think it really complemented the dewy makeup and weightless hairstyle that the amazing Kisha Lemons and Carrie Driscoll Mueller thoughtfully crafted for our gorgeous model, Meg Rudovich.

We just had fun with it, used umbrella’s when necessary, got a little rained on when we had to, and treated ourselves to some delicious cake and champagne at the end. It was a blast, and I loved every minute of it!

I hope you like it!

And, then it started to pour, and we all dashed for the umbrellas and waited for the worst to pass. Here is our talented hairstylist, Caryn Driscoll-Mueller, staying dry:

xo

Tennile

Credits:

Dress and Jewelry:
Kpoene, of Mignonette Bridal

Hairstylist and Makeup Artist:
Kisha Lemons

Hairstylist:
Caryn Driscoll-Mueller

Rentals:
Rent Vintage Chicago

Cake and Desserts:
Bittersweet Pastry

Florist:
Bunches

Model:
Megan Rudovich

Location:
Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

C o n n e c t