Milwaukee Wedding at the Pfister Hotel

One word to describe this wedding we recently photographed in Milwaukee is “WOW”

In all the years of photographing weddings, it’s rare to witness such pure, genuine joy from a couple as lovely as Jessica and Matthew. From the first time we spoke on the phone, to their consultation and every interaction leading up to the wedding, we knew this wedding (and couple) was going to be special.


Day Prior to the Wedding/Travel Day:

We started our journey to Milwaukee by getting to the airport with enough time to allow us to ensure all three of us (Andrew, Heidi and our equipment) were able to easily make our flight. After standing in the seemingly never ending line for security, we finally made it to the front of the line where we were greeted by friendly TSA agents for a private screening. After 30 minutes of questioning and making sure we were not a threat, we made it to our gate with plenty of time to decompress before boarding the airplane.

After an uneventful flight to Milwaukee, we hit the ground running. Our plan for the 2nd half of the day was to visit the venues that would be involved in the wedding the following day. This included: the The Basilica of St. Josaphat, the Pfister Hotel and other areas where we were going to photograph. Both Heidi and Andrew were awestruck at the breathtaking architecture and the beauty of the locations where we were going to be free to create some truly magical art. Both of us were truly excited and couldn’t wait for the next day.

Day of the Wedding.

Getting Ready.

While driving to the Pfister Hotel where we would be photographing the ‘getting ready’ images, we stopped to pick up the largest coffee we could find. We were just starting a 12 hour day and needed to start with our gas tanks full (iced vanilla coffees with 2 shots of espresso, in case you were curious:)). With our prior planning and detailed coordination with our wedding couple, Jessica and Matthew, we had ample time to complete exactly what they were expecting, in terms of look and style. Jessica and Matthew loved our dramatic, storytelling style - it’s something unique and different from the average wedding photographer. Helping this day run even more smoothly was learning that Jessica and Matthew hired an amazing, detail oriented and caring wedding coordinator, Tara Buda. She was nothing short of amazing. As the wedding party headed to the street level to catch a trolley that would take them to the ceremony, Andrew and Tara secreted away with Jessica for a few minutes to create some amazing bridal portraits that incorporated the Victorian style windows at the Pfister Hotel.

Traveling the 15 minutes from the hotel to the church, via trolley, offered a fun time for us to capture both the nervousness and excitement of the bride and groom as they awaited their big moment.


The Basilica of St. Josaphat:

Walking into the cathedral, Andrew felt as if he was back in Italy touring the cathedral style churches in Rome. Inspired by St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, the architecture and pristine nature of this basilica had both Heidi and Andrew in awe. This was a traditional Catholic ceremony, so we had time to be creative and incorporate different angles, all the while maintaining a respectful presence within the sacred walls of the church.


The Fun Part.

Once Jessica and Matthew were officially married, it was our time to shine and do what we do best; creating art that tells the bride and groom’s story in a unique and dramatic fashion. We started inside the church because we had to incorporate the architecture of the Basilica and wouldn’t be able to sleep that night if we didn’t. There was a limited amount of time inside the church, so we also ventured outside to capture the tall pillars and grand steps that were part of the beautiful architecture. We then traveled in the trolley to a unique terrace the bride and groom had reserved for portraits. With its unique angles and breathtaking landscape, we could have spent hours and hours (maybe even days) creating memorable portraits. There were so many areas with interesting spots, this was truly a photographer’s paradise. Along with the landscape and scenery, there was plenty of laughter, kissing and showing of affection by the newlyweds. Jessica and Matthew were so easy to work with and just fell naturally into every pose, you can see this in every image we took. When we returned to the Pfister Hotel for the reception, there was one last surprise for the couple; a tin type portrait to be completed by a true tin type photographic artist. This was amazing to witness, as we had never watched the process involved with creating a tin type portrait - all completed right there, on location.

The Reception.

Again, WOW was the key word. The Pfister Hotel is a beautiful Victorian style hotel in downtown Milwaukee, it is known for its rich history and gorgeous interior. We escorted Jessica and Matthew around to different areas in the hotel, capturing true magic not only of them, but also of the hotel’s interior as well. It all worked together perfectly. During the reception, there was delicious food, tasty desserts and a beautifully designed cake. There was much laughter the whole night, and one could tell all the guests were having a lot of fun dancing and carrying on. Jessica and Matthew choreographed their first dance (she is a trained ballet dancer) and their very emotional father/bride and mother/son dances. At the end of the night, we walked across the street to capture some nighttime portraits of Jessica and Matthew. A great way to end the night and for them to have a nice, relaxing private moment away from the guests.

After the Wedding, the day after.

We knew we had been part of something special, and we knew we had captured some award winning images. Heidi and Andrew held the memory cards tightly on the flight home the next day. We couldn’t stop talking about the wedding and how much fun was had. Back in Mesa, Az, we were able to sit back and enjoy reviewing the images we had captured.

After a few weeks, Jessica and Matthew were able to have a Skype session with us to review their images and see how we were able to tell their story through our lenses of our cameras. As we had hoped, everyone was ecstatic and emotional. Heidi was the most emotional:)

Thank you Jessica and Matthew for trusting us with capturing the magical day that was your wedding!

If you have an upcoming wedding, and you’d like us to capture the story of your magical day, please contact us at 480-400-0212 or email at

Photographers: Studio 3 Images (Andrew and Heidi)