Millenium Park Engagement Session: Tina & Jonathan

Ok, engagement session fans! It’s time to give out a few Gold (Grid) stars. We reserve these for moments of true awesomeness, and this Millenium Park session meets ALL of the criteria! We spent an afternoon downtown in Millenium Park with Tina & Jonathan, had the best time, and can’t get enough of their fabulous photos. Take a look, and get to know this dynamic duo.

When we first met them on Instagram, their friends gushed about what a cool couple they were. Fun, outgoing, and full of personality! Your friends know you best, right? Well, we are official Jonathan & Tina fans. You can’t fake love, friends — and these two were all smiles and laughter. We just got to sit back and capture it all!

Tina & Jonathan are not just one of the sweetest and most adorable couples we’ve gotten to photograph (though they ARE that, too!). They’re also a master class in setting yourself up for engagement session success! Can we discuss how stylish these two are? Yes. Yes, we can!

Managing to be classy yet comfy, the soft romantic colors they chose were perfect for this Millenium Park session. Tina’s jewelry was breathtaking, and Jonathan looked dapper down to his pocket square. Looking crisp & clean, they were at home downtown. Were they on their way back from a fancy brunch, or on their way to a concert in the park? You tell us.

Congrats, Tina & Jonathan! We can’t wait to see your wedding day style!

Be sure to check out more fabulous Gold Grid couples!

Goose Island Wedding: Jordan & Joel

Goose Island Wedding Chicago

Jordan & Joel taught us an important lesson — when you’ve got an abundance of love, you might as well share it as much as you can!  After a holiday engagement session and an intimate San Francisco ceremony, it’s time for a Goose Island celebration in Chicago! It was an honor to capture this chapter in Jordan & Joel’s love story, and now we get to share it with you!

The day began at the James Hotel, a chic spot with so much natural light! As if the windows weren’t enough, can you please take a moment to appreciate this open staircase where Jordan & Joel did their first look? Absolute perfection! After some outdoor photos (yes, sunlight!) with the bridal party, we headed to Gallery 1028 on Goose Island.  Jordan fell in love with this gallery because of its exposed brick and industrial vibe. They contrasted that with warm lights and candles, creating a cozy atmosphere.

A big congrats to Jordan & Joel! From San Fran to Chicago, from the Mission District to Goose Island, it’s been such a joy to be on this journey with you. Cheers to you, lovebirds!


Meet the Team:

Ceremony/Reception Venue: Gallery 1028  |  Bridal Prep/First Look Venue: The James Hotel  


San Francisco Wedding: Jordan & Joel

San Francisco Wedding

Alright, midwestern friends! Get ready to have some major California sunshine envy! Before coming to Chicago for a big wedding bash, Jordan & Joel celebrated with a small San Francisco ceremony. It was just the two of them, a few close relatives, and their oh-so-cuddly fur babies! Set against the rustic interior of the San Francsico Swedenborgian Church, this was all about golden light and West Coast romance. And let us not forget the pop of that pink champagne, the perfect complement to Jordan’s sweet, soft dress.

We always say that the most important two people on your wedding day are you…and the person you’re about to marry. While we certainly adore a big wedding, there is something to be said for intimacy. Jordan & Joel will have a bigger bash in Chicago (and we’ll OF COURSE bring you all the details), but for today…Here’s to those who keep it simple, sweet, and focused on the most important duo of the day. Congrats, Jordan & Joel!



Take a look at more Jordan & Joel, and hear more about their engagement story!

What to Wear: Engagement Session Edition

When it comes to engagement sessions, the number one question is always “What to wear?” We know it can be difficult enough to find the perfect outfit just for you, so the challenge is doubled for an engagement session.   As hard as it might feel, and as much as you may just want to toss on your favorite fitted tee and call it done, I promise it’s worth going the extra step to coordinate and look like you’re having a wonderful, snazzy time!

Some general lessons that we have learned:

  • Avoid being too matchy-matchy, but look like you’re in the same catalog
  • Prioritize comfort and confidence. Wear something you know makes you feel fabulous!
  • Think about the head-to-toe look, from the hair to the shoes

Should we change outfits?

Sure! Bringing options to your session is a great way to get different looks. We can coordinate the changes into our plan for the session, to make sure everything runs smoothly. And keep in mind that minor changes (scarves, layers, accessories) are great, too! Lana & Mike decided on a few different looks that reflected their personality. Do you have a favorite?

Can casual work? 

Yes! Your engagement session doesn’t need to be a black-tie affair. You do want to look comfortable, relaxed, and at home in your surroundings. From the pop of pink in her dress to the close-up character in their choice of shoes, Amy & Jon look totally natural at the Chicago Botanical Gardens. For Mike & Phil, a walk around their neighborhood was the ideal session, and their outfits reflected how close they were to home.

Should there be a theme?

Sure! If it suits your personality (or the personality of your wedding), a theme can be a great way to get creative and show friends & family who you are! Erin & Alex are both artists, and their speakeasy-inspired session was an absolute blast! They even brought clown noses, which were the perfect touch to an already laughter-filled session!

Do multiple locations mean multiple outfits?

Not necessarily! One of the great things about Chicago is the endless amount of photo locations. Choosing different backdrops does not mean you have to keep changing outfits. Allison & Benjamin look smart and snazzy, whether they’re in front of architecture or the changing autumn leaves. The rich tones of Allison’s dress and the sleek color of Ben’s shirt and slacks go with everything!

Check out more engagement favorites in the Gold Grid Studios portfolio now!

The First Look: A Gold Grid Moment

Of all the important moments that create a wedding day, the first look is perhaps the most emotional. All of the planning and decision-making fall away for a bit. You’re able to focus on one thing: the person you’re about to marry. Well, maybe two things: the person, and how unbelievably perfect they look!

The first look is an exciting part of the day for your photographer, too.  It gives us an opportunity to help choreograph one of the most beautiful dances of the day.  We are able to scout the perfect location for you, and coordinate with the team to find the ideal time. Your venue may be a good option, or we can explore the surrounding area. We can make sure that this first look moment will be just for the two of you. No one else will be around, so you’re able to feel all of the feels!

Whether indoor…


Or outdoors…


Whether he gasps…


Or in case she cries…


You will want to see this moment from both sides…


And from every possible angle…


Because your first look is just for the two of you…and it’s just too good to miss!

The Rookery Building Chicago Wedding - Gold Grid Studios


Take a look at other parts of the wedding day on the Gold Grid blog now!