Last September, I had the wonderful opportunity of photographing Nicholas and Samantha’s magical “summer” wedding at a gorgeous private estate in McCall, Idaho. I’m so happy I got to be a part of their big day!

Nicholas + Samantha’s September Wedding

Sam and Nick were planning their wedding long distance, so meeting up was not an option before the big day . This tends to happen with several of my couples. Meeting your wedding photographer on the day of the wedding can sometimes feel a bit intimating for a bride and groom, as they are entrusting one of the biggest days of their lives in the hands of a total stranger. But Sam and Nick made me feel like a longtime friend they just hadn't seen for years. You know, like when you go to elementary school with someone and then don't see them again until high school or college? It was like that! We hit it off right away!

Private Estate Wedding Photography

They had their wedding at Sam’s parents’ private estate in McCall, Idaho. Let's just say that when I showed up, I immediately started drooling. The gates of Wedding Photographer Heaven had opened! The gorgeous private estate was up on a hill with views for miles. On the opposite side was a stunning backdrop of mountains in the distance. They even built an extra barn for the wedding! Well, I think that was already in the plans, but holding the wedding at their home lit a fire beneath them to get it done. And it was the perfect place to have a dance party with a live band!

Back to Sam and Nick, because they are the main affair and couldn't have been more fabulous! Just two down-to-earth, beautiful souls whose love was palpable. Neither of them cared much for being in front of the camera (of which I completely understand) but you would have never known it. They looked amazing! We laughed a ton and shared sweet, intimate moments, like the first look, where they exchanged love notes before turning around.

We did their first look session out by the Jug Mountain Ranch, which has a rustic, perfectly-placed bridge for photos. Then we went over to a small lake surrounded by mountains before returning to their private estate for more photos and getting the party started!

My Quote to the Bride & Groom:

To Sam and Nick: The love you two share reminded me of a quote from one of my favorite visual artists, Christina Lonsdale. 

"Being authentic will radiate more pure energy than trying to be the ideal you."

This quote stuck out in my mind because from the moment we met, I could feel your authenticity—the energy and beautiful love you have for each other. Keep doing what you're doing and the adventures will be life giving and pure. Enjoy every moment of your journey together!

Kind Words from Sam & Nick:

“Since my first interaction with Maija it was so clear that she really loves what she does and the couples she works with! She took the time to ask all about us, how we met, and our lives together. This was so important to me, because how can you trust someone to capture one of the most important days of your life without knowing who you are and why you’re there?! We never actually met Maija before our wedding day but felt like we knew her and felt completely comfortable immediately upon meeting her! Neither one of us have ever been particularly comfortable in front of the camera but Maija made it SO easy, and honestly, even fun! I would do it again in a heartbeat! Her photos very clearly speak for themselves. Spend just a few minutes looking and you will understand! I was immediately drawn in by the beautiful, natural, candid, and artistic shots she took, so I wasn’t even surprised by the perfection of our photos. Going through them we were immediately brought back to the magic of that day; she captured all the moments that had passed us by too quickly. The smiles and laughs are so real and she captures every emotion so beautifully!! I planned my wedding from out of state and was so nervous not being there in person. Maija’s communication and organization skills made me feel so at ease, and while I stressed about some other vendors, I had not a single worry with Maija. I could go on forever about how amazing she is! If you’re still looking for a photographer, stop here!! You will NOT be disappointed.”

Featured Idaho Wedding Vendors

Coordinator: Tanya Neutze with McCall Weddings

Cake: Stacey Cakes

Band - Big Wow Band

Hair and Make-up: Shawna Hines

Catering: A Lively Chef Catering