March 6, 2019

Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer

I’m Stephanie Messick, a wedding and lifestyle photographer based in Warrenton, VA. Whether I’m by the mountains in Virginia or the ocean on the Florida Gulf Coast, my soul feels right at home, surrounded by rural living and the raw beauty of nature. I genuinely love what I do, and feel so passionate to share the enthusiasm and joy of these celebrations with you!

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Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer

When I have a couple who lives out of the state, sometimes it is easier for me to fly to them for engagement portraits! That was the case for Anthony and Kathryn. Between their crazy schedules making a session happen in Virginia was veryyyy limited! Not to mention, their careers are pretty demanding on time. On the other hand, I find it very special to take photos in a meaningful location like where a couple is currently residing. 🙂 We did just that this past weekend! I left in a snowstorm and flew down to sunny Fort Lauderdale for a night! It was a fast trip, but it was an incredible experience getting to know Anthony and Kathryn on a more personal level. 🙂 This makes me want to do destination engagements for every couple so we have that opportunity to relax and enjoy the genuine time together!!

Anthony and Kathryn made reservations at a sushi restaurant (YUMMM!!!) Friday evening allowing me to see a little part of downtown Fort Lauderdale! I was so grateful to be somewhere warm to enjoy a nice dinner outside with new friends because it was FREEZING back home!! I understand why older people move down to Florida. Does this make me old that I want to stay away from the cold weather? Probably. 😉 But Anthony and Kathryn warmed my heart by their welcoming hospitality!!! After an incredible dinner with popcorn, sushi, and a bite of surprise cotton candy (??? HA!), we made our way to their favorite gelato place. Can this be my weekend every weekend?! Hahaha! They almost tempted me in a 3 AM rocket launch after our Friday adventures… I should have said, YOLO! 😉

The following day was only a continuation of the fun! Kathryn spent the morning/afternoon pampering herself (because everyone deserves to have some personal time!!!) and we met up to head to the gorgeous Vizcaya Museum and Gardens in Miami, Florida for their engagement portraits!! As soon as we arrived, we noticed a wedding starting to set up, but we were able to wander and explore the property around the event. And, GOODNESS. The place was incredible and HUGE!!!! Anthony and Kathryn have impeccable taste, and I’m so incredibly honored to be their wedding photographer!!!! I loved seeing Anthony open up in front of the camera as he pulled Kathryn closer to him and the way he made her smile. These photos below are such a sweet representation of their love! I was so sad to leave, but I cannot WAIT to photograph and hang out with them again at the beautiful Great Marsh Estate in October!!!!

Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer

Anthony & Kathryn’s Love Story

“I’ll never date a law student.” – Kathryn E. Modugno, circa 2015.

Like most good love stories, theirs began in a courtroom. Sort of. They’ve told most people that they met at Barrister’s Ball—on April Fools day—and fell for each other a week or so later. But that’s really a half truth.

Kathryn was Anthony’s judge in the Emory Law moot court competition. Her notes on his performance looked something like this:
– Basic understanding of the law
– Average advocacy
– Horrible suit (is it green? Or grey? Grey-green?)
– Takes instructions well, has potential to learn

By the Ball he’d upgraded to a black three button jacket with a slightly European cut. Kathryn didn’t like that one either. His approach at the ball was deliberate. She was wary at first—she thought he was still trying to get on the moot court team. Fortunately, it quickly became apparent that they had quite a bit in common. Happily most of their similarities had nothing to do with law school. So over drinks that evening, and more refined drinks again a week later, they began to fall in love.

Their courtship was a whirlwind. Fast forward three weeks, and Anthony was helping Kathryn hobble around as she had managed to sprain her ankle a day before final exams. Three more weeks and Anthony was skyping his sort-of girlfriend while she hobbled around D.C. for her summer internship while Anthony completed his in Atlanta. The calls were never long enough.

After finishing law school, Kathryn moved to Florida (one of two states that Anthony said he would never live in). Anthony took up dog walking to raise money to come visit. Anthony wrote Kathryn letters during his classes (spoiler alert – he ended up ok and graduated in May). By Christmas, they were looking at engagement rings.

Exactly two years after the Ball, Kathryn boarded a plane heading toward Atlanta, knowing that it would be the most exciting flight that she had taken in her life. Upon arriving in the city in which they began their love story, Anthony met her with a full (matching, well tailored) suit on and a dozen red roses. Kathryn was freaking out inside because even though she knew the proposal would be that weekend, she explicitly asked Anthony if she needed to dress nicely for any plans that evening. She was wearing sweat pants because he said “Be comfortable.”  As already established, though, he is good at taking directions, and the proposal was made the next morning. They sat together in Lullwater Park, and Anthony, never more sure of anything but beyond nervous all the same, asked Kathryn to be his wife. She said yes, even though he put the ring on the wrong hand.

So Kathryn will end up marrying a lawyer. And Anthony proudly displays his Florida drivers license. And they fall in love more day by day.

Anthony and Kathryn, thank youuuuuuuu so much for an unforgettable and personable time!!!! I’m so grateful we had the opportunity to really connect beyond a distant phone conversation. <3 Your warm welcomes made the experience something I’ll cherish going into your wedding day and far beyond! I hope to come down to Fort Lauderdale again in the near future to hang out and eat sushi in the near future!!! 😉 For now, enjoy this preview from our wonderful time together!!! CONGRATS!!!! XOXO!!!

Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer

Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer

Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer

Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer Anthony & Kathryn | Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida Engagement Photographer

CONGRATS, Anthony and Kathryn!!!! XOXO!!!

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