Get to Know US – FAQ!

When you invest with Arte de Vie to photograph your wedding, you’re starting a new relationship with us and we look forward to getting to know you guys better before your wedding! All of your couples get a questionnaire from us to help acquaint us all. We thought it only fair that we answer it as well to let you guys get to know us a bit better 🙂

As answered by Doug…..

  • Q. WHO: Tell us a little bit about yourselves! What do you do for work? for fun? for charity?
    A. Doug- I’m a really easy going, always the optimist, and always wanting to throw a great party kind of guy. I have one of the greatest jobs in that I get to document one of the happiest days in a couple’s life as they celebrate with their closest friends and families. To think that decades from now, they along with their children and grand-children will be looking back through their wedding album and remembering exactly what they were thinking and feeling on that day is just such an incredible thought, and I’m so happy that this is my gift.
    For charity, I’ve worked with March of Dimes as an honoree for their Spotlight on Success Gala. We donate our time and photo shoots to several other fundraising events in New Orleans, most recently the American Cancer Society. I really hope to start up a team of people to volunteer time working with Habitat for Humanity to help rebuild this wonderful city that serves as such a dynamic backdrop for our photo shoots!
  • Q. WHAT: What are a few things about each other that you just absolutely love! What are you most looking forward to on your wedding day?
    A. Wow, where do I start on this one! She is just the sweetest, most thoughtful girl you could ever hope to meet. She wears her heart on her sleeve and is always giving of herself. I absolutely love this one crooked little tooth she has when she smiles. So much so, that I even mentioned it in our vows! She is also one of the cheesiest people I know, which I usually don’t go for, but with her I just can’t get enough. I wish I was able to have a video camera on her all the time to record all the silly things she comes up with.

    On the wedding day, the thing I was most looking forward to was the First Look, even though I knew I was gonna cry like a baby, and getting on stage with the band at the reception since she played the drums and I played guitar and performed Shook Me All Night Long by AC/DC! Oh, and the 2nd Line, which turned out to be truly epic. And marrying the woman that exceeded my dreams 🙂

  • Q. WHEN: When did you know this was the person you wanted to marry?
    A. Hmmm, this is a tough one. We were together 9 years before I popped the question and the first several years with us we were quite on and off. One could easily argue I wanted to marry her in year 2 despite her turning down several of my proposals, one even being at the prime dining table of a restaurant with the perfect view of Niagra Falls at night! Then of course we had our ups and downs and after finally being in the same city and living together for a length of time, we both got on the same page and it’s been incredible ever since. I wish I could pinpoint the exact time when I knew in my mind that it was finally the right time, but I do remember the night I couldn’t sleep and the idea of how to propose came to me!
  • Q. HOW: How did the proposal go?
    A. While my brother Kevin was in Iraq I attended a fundraising concert at Tipitina’s where I bid on, and won, a one-hour solo acoustic set with Fred LeBlanc, lead singer of Cowboy Mouth. I knew my brother would be retuning in December right around the time of his birthday so I thought a party with Fred playing would be a great way to welcome him home and wish him a happy birthday. As the plans for the party started to develop, it went from a small gathering on our condo’s rooftop to a 3 hour event at Nola Brewery and ending with a surprise brass band appearance. I eventually realized that would be the perfect opportunity to propose without her even considering that it would happen that night, and with one of her best friends and her husband already being good friends with my brother, it wouldn’t look strange to invite them so she would have at least someone very close to her as part of this special occasion. Even though I was funding and throwing the party for my brother, I still made sure to ask him before he made it home permanently, if he minded me doing it that night because I certainly didn’t want to take away from welcoming him home, etc. He thought it was a fabulous idea, and so that phase of planning began.
    The schedule of the party was to have mingling and greeting of Kevin for the first hour, Fred playing the 2nd hour and the brass band blowing out the brewery for the final hour. Towards the end of Fred’s set, he was to play the song “New Orleans”. As the song nears the end, the chorus I mentioned above starts to repeat. Just before starting that chorus I casually walked over to mic and interrupted Fred, at which point CheyAnne is trying to figure out what the heck I’m doing! I started to explain to Fred and everyone there that I loved that song and it holds a great deal of meaning to myself and CheyAnne and the history of the song for us. I went on to explain that while I loved that song, I thought the lyrics weren’t quite right and needed a bit of tweaking. Rather than saying “I might love you yeah, but I love me more,” they should go more like “I might love ME yeah, but I love YOU more!” It was then that I dropped to a knee to propose to the most incredible woman in the world.
  • Q. WHERE: Why did you choose your particular ceremony/reception locations? Engagement and/or bridal shoot locations?
    A. The ceremony location was all CheyAnne’s idea. I was editing a wedding that I had photographed in the Square and when saw the photos on my screen she quickly said that’s where I want to get married! It’s in the heart of the city that we both love so dearly, and such a great backdrop for photos. Also, with all of her family coming in from out of state, it was a special treat for them to have a great New Orleans experience. The Bourbon Orleans had a great location being right just one block from the Square and the size of the ballroom was perfect for our 150 guests.

    French Quarter for the engagements……again, I’m fairly certain that was CheyAnne’s call, but we really wanted that old New Orleans charm and character of the French Quarter.

  • Q. WHY: Why did you guys choose Arte de Vie to document your special day!?
    A. We chose Stacy Reeves to photograph our wedding for many reasons (aside from the fact that we couldn’t photograph it ourselves!). CheyAnne came across her website several years prior to our engagement and really liked her style back then and just continued to follow her blog ever since. Once it was time to start making decisions she showed my her site and I really liked what I saw as well, but just to be sure we did shop around and check out a few other photographers’ work and had meetings with two others, but in the end it was Stacy without a doubt. Our personalities all just matched so well and her style is really similar to ours in that, she has a really good documentary eye, really solid in her portrait work, and her reception lighting style was really solid which was important to me since I had a guy come in and set up lighting in the ballroom and I really wanted to keep that ambiance in the photos.