A Black and white image of a couple kissing at Doughton Park near Sparta, NC. Photo by Mabyn Ludke

Engagement

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Doughton Park

Selecting the right location for your session is way more important than one might think. It adds layers of depth and attachment that don’t happen with the pretty park down the road. We searched and searched for the perfect location for Casey & Andrew’s anniversary session. One night, Andrew told us a story of this amazing park his family visits every year. We knew immediately this was the perfect spot! Not only did it have epic views of the Blue Ridge Parkway, but it had immense personal value to these two. We even ran into Andrew’s father & grandmother while we were scoping out the best place to shoot! The love for this place is still strong with the whole family.
 
I got to meet Casey & Andrew for the very first time while visiting Wilksboro, NC this time last year. Daniel & Andrew have been friends & fellow musicians for years. After our encounter last year, I knew we needed to capture their relationship. These two are the perfect blend of silly & sweet and it’s easy to tell why they adore each other. Their photo shoot became a mini reunion where we caught up, told stories, and snag some awesome photos too! What a great way to spend a Sunday evening!

 

XOXOXO,
Mabyn

Couple walks hand in hand on top of a mountain at Doughton Park in the Blue Ridge Parkway, NC. Photo by Mabyn Ludke.

When we first arrived at Doughton Park, we hiked up the top of the hillside and were rewarded by this super cool tree. I couldn’t help but want to add his gnarled branches into the background. It’s such a great contrast to these two & their love.

A couple kisses a top the Blue Ridge Parkway near Sparta, NC. Mabyn Ludke Photography.

The day was so beautiful & clear, the perfect conditions to see mountains for days! Those Appalachian mountains get me every time!

A Black and white image of a couple kissing at Doughton Park near Sparta, NC. Photo by Mabyn Ludke

Wind always makes a beautiful photograph epic! Just a little ruffle of the hair and this moment just takes my breath away!

A couple hugs a top Doughton Park overlooking the Blue Ridge Parkway in NC. Mabyn Ludke Photography.

At first Casey & Andrew didn’t know how to pose or what to do with their hands. It took a little nudging, but once they realized that all they had to do was be themselves & love each other, well nothing else was needed!

Black and White photo of a couple looking over the Blue Ridge Parkway at Doughton Park in NC. Photography by Mabyn Ludke

Andrew & Daniel use to play in the band Hot Vegas together. I dubbed this shot Casey & Andrew’s album cover for whenever they choose to start up their own band. 😉

Married couple snuggles atop the breathtaking Blue Ridge Parkway near Sparta, NC. Photography by Mabyn Ludke.

Or they may choose just to snuggle each other for life in stead…I guess that’s okay too!

An excited couple celebrate their wedding anniversary at Doughton Park in the Appalachain Mountains of North Carolina. Mabyn Ludke Photography.

This is joy! Just beautiful, loving joy!

This married couple is jumping for joy in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Photography by Mabyn.

I saw this spot of negative space and I couldn’t help myself. I don’t have couples do the jump shot often, but if anywhere was a perfect spot THIS was it!

Mabyn Ludke Photography captured a sweet moment of a couple celebrating their anniversary at Doughton Park in the mountains of NC.

One of the funniest parts of this entire session was that Andrew directed the entire thing and not in the way you might think. He didn’t tell me what to do, but whenever we took our camera’s further away you’d hear him tell Casey things like “Okay now look into my eyes, now look over there and smile, now kiss me!” He did it over and over and the best part was IT WORKED!

A beautiful woman poses in an elegant red dress and floral crown in the woods of Doughton Park near Sparta, NC. Mabyn Ludke Photography.

Casey brought along this gorgeous red dress that she searched tirelessly for. It was a gorgeous pop of color against the sleeping brown of the woods at Doughton Park.

A beautiful couple embraces in the woods at Doughton Park near Sparta, NC. Photography by Mabyn.

Dark moody woods + gorgeous couple + the perfect light = Mabyn’s happy place! UGH!

An intimate close up of a sweet couple kissing during their anniversary session in the Blue Ridge Parkway of North Carolina. Mabyn Ludke Photography.

Casey has the florist hook up to make her an incredible floral crown! The attention to detail was fantastic and it was the perfect accent to shoot in the woods!

The woods in Doughton Park area beautiful backdrop for this gorgeous couple during their mountain anniversary session in NC. Mabyn Ludke Photography.

This shot is all Daniel! Isn’t he getting good? Dang! He makes his wifey proud!

Mabyn Ludke Photography stayed till sunset as this adorable couple celebrated their anniversary at Doughton Park in North Carolina's Blue Ridge Parkway.

And of course we had to stick around for that gorgeous sunset! This time it was a vibrant orange, the perfect contrast to those blue mountains in the background. Oi…I love my life!

A black and white of a sweet couple keeping warm on a cold evening in the Blue Ridge Parkway of NC. Mabyn Ludke Photography.

This time around the wind was a little quieter than our last mountain session. However, there was just enough of it to give us a beautiful wind blown tendril or two.

Couple kisses atop a mountain cliff in the Blue Ridge Parkway during their anniversary session by Mabyn Ludke Photography

The wind also obliged to give us a couple of epic dress shots! THANK YOU MOTHER NATURE!

An epic view of the Blue Ridge Parkway during this anniversary session at Doughton Park by Mabyn Ludke Photography

I love the contrast in this shot, the dark moody mountains & the sweet emotion in Casey’s “sleep face” as she likes to call it. I like to call it GORGEOUS!

A beautiful woman watches the sunset over the appalachain mountains at Doughton Park North Carolina. Photo by Mabyn Ludke.

I of course had to get Casey up on that mountain top by herself for an epic dress shot. I love you Andrew, but you’re just not as pretty as your wife. 😉

A sweet embrace atop the Blue Ridge Parkway at Doughton Park by a couple celebrating their anniversary session with photograph by Mabyn Ludke

But we’ll add you back in anyway. 😉

The Appalachian mountains create a stunning backdrop for this couple's anniversary session with Mabyn Ludke Photography

This time I wanted to stay a little longer after the sun was gone to capitalize on that rich vibrant sky. We broke out the flashes and created some super cool night shots!

One last embrace at Doughton Park overlooking the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina during a beautiful anniversary session by Mabyn Ludke Photography.

These two were tired after our epic adventure, looking this good takes a lot of energy! Thanks Casey & Andrew for being completely amazing!

 

To see more epic photo sessions click here!

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A Doughton Park Anniversary Session I Blue Ridge Parkway I Casey & Andrew

Newly weds Nicki & Brad snuggle close with a breathtaking view of the appalachian mountains on the blue ridge parkway.

Adventures

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Western North Carolina Wedding Photographers Featured on Otterplan Connect

I am a big fan of community over competition. I spent most of my musical theater collegiate years fighting for a spot on the stage, fighting to be heard, fighting just to feel accepted. Those years were hard, but they taught me to never give up! Plus, I’m pretty sure that’s where I get all of my dramatic flair from in photography.

When I tumbled head over heels in love with wedding photography, part of my joy was finding a community of people who wanted to help me succeed. It was incredible to go from fighting the world all by myself to having a family of like minded photographers cheering me on. I am so grateful for each and every person who poured their time, knowledge, and sometimes even money into. I am forever grateful for your investments!

All of this mushy stuff is leading to a point and that point is I’m always on the look out for amazing communities to connect and invest in. If I can help just one other photographer reach a goal, get inspired, or never give up, then it’s all worth it! One such community that I was recently invited to join is called Otterplan Connect. Their motto is “Connecting wedding creatives. Growing together” and it’s specifically designed for North Carolina Wedding Professionals.

Otterplan recently reached out and asked to interview me for their monthly member spotlight! What an extreme honor! You can read the full interview here:

March Spotlight: Mabyn Ludke Photography

Interview sample from the otter plan connect spotlight blog on Wester North Carolina wedding photographers Mabyn Ludke Photography

Now that Daniel & I have settled in Western North Carolina, we’ve been looking for new ways to connect with professionals in the area. Otterplan is a great way to meet new people & they’re constantly revamping & implementing new connection strategies into their site! I’m looking forward to the network of amazing wedding creatives that Daniel and I will continue to connect with through this site!

XOXOXO,
Mabyn

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Western North Carolina Wedding Photographers! – Otterplan Connect

Burnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke Photography

Tips for Brides

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Burnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke Photography

You may recall a sweet little wedding nestled in the Appalachian mountains about 45 minutes from Asheville that Daniel & I shot last summer. Jenna & David are worship leaders and they contacted us to shoot their incredibly sweet & beautiful Burnsville, NC wedding. After most weddings, I send a few photos to the vendors who helped create such a wonderful event. We love lovin’ on our vendors and we appreciate all they do so the least we could do is share a few photos with them. Little did we know that this simple act would lead to quite the chain reaction!

Our images were shared from vendor to writer to magazine editor! We ended up getting a full page feature in Mountain Escapes Magazine! A completely unexpected and wonderful surprise! We also landed an invite to the 2017 Burnsville Bridal Expo. After all of that love, how could we say no?! So we packed up our photos in the car and headed to what is quickly becoming one of my favorite little towns, Burnsville!

Amelia Hoilman of White Falls Catering did an incredible job of setting the stage for all of the talented vendors to showcase their specialties. We had a great time introducing ourselves and getting to know the local community. I’m a HUGE fan of supporting local and this community sure knows how to do it right! On top of the beautiful setup in the Burnsville Town Center, they invited West Entertainment to get the party going, & had a hilarious cake smash where brides clawed through layers and layers of cake to find the ring hidden inside! It was quite possibly one of the nicest & most entertaining bridal shows I’ve ever attended!

As some of you may know, 2017 marks my 10th year as a wedding photographer. That means I’ve officially been shooting weddings for a DECADE! Okay, now if looking in the mirror didn’t make me feel old, this sure does! However, it’s a milestone I will gratefully celebrate! To work at something I love so much for so long, to have others support me, to be able to see hundreds of joyful brides and grooms as I scroll through my website look back at me, it’s a feeling of satisfaction and peace that I can’t aptly describe.

Most of the time when we attended a bridal show we give away an engagement session. This year however, I wanted to go big in celebration of 10 years! So we opted to give away a wedding collection! WHAT?! I know! We’re crazy! So it is with much joy & excitement that I get to announce that the winner of our Wedding Collection Giveaway is Margaret Casey & Jackie Sprinkle!!!!! Congrats!!!! We’ll be sending you an official “You won lets get our happy dance on” email and we can setup a time to discuss all the details! EEEE! YAY! This is so much fun!

Thank you to everyone who stopped by our booth. We can’t wait to shoot more beautiful weddings in the WNC area and have an amazing 2017 season!

XOXOXO,
Mabyn

Burnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke PhotographyBurnsville, NC Wedding Photographer Mabyn Ludke Photography

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And the Winner is… – Burnsville, NC Bridal Expo