Like most women living in NYC, Meghan had long given up on the idea of meeting a guy at a bar. No matter how movies and TV shows like to portray it, living and working in the city is hard work. The hustle and bustle, while exciting, is also kind of exhausting. After a long day at work, the last thing Meghan wanted to do was go to a bar and try to find the one nice, good-looking guy in a sea of not-so-nice ones. And though she is far too modest to say it, Meghan is gorgeous and probably spent most of her time in any bar trying to politely turn away guys she wasn't interested in.
So during a particularly a long day at work, Meghan was looking forward to a quiet evening in her apartment, relaxing and de-stressing, when she got a phone call. It was her friend who had recently moved to the city from across the river in Hoboken asking if she'd like to go to dinner and possibly grab some drinks afterward. Not willing to dash her friend's hopes that living in the city involved a night out on the town every day of the week, Meghan agreed to join her. So she quickly stopped at her apartment, changed out of her work clothes into something more casual and threw her hair up in a pony tail. After a leisurely dinner, they decided to end the night at a wine bar nearby. A few glasses of wine later, Meghan and her friend decided to call it a night. As they were walking out the door they were greeted by a group of men who were walking in. One in particular caught Meghan's eye right away.
Marc, like a lot of men in the city, had no doubt that he could meet a woman in a bar. Whether or not he could find the woman he wanted to marry, well that was another question altogether. So when one of his friends suggested they stop by a wine bar that evening, Marc was skeptical. But, much like Meghan had earlier in day, he decided to go with it. What did he have to lose? He didn't even have to fully enter the place before he spotted her, about to leave. He had to do something to make her stay, he wanted to at least find out her name. So he started up a conversation.
They ended up talking for hours. Meghan says that they always had such an easy time talking together. Even from that very first conversation, nothing felt forced or awkward. It just felt right. When the evening came to an end, Meghan and Marc each walked through that door again, this time with plans to meet again and a renewed sense of hope. All of a sudden they knew that it was definitely possible to meet the person you want to spend the rest of their life with at a bar. In fact, they were each pretty sure they just did.
* * *
Since New York City was where Meghan and Marc met and fell in love, there was never any doubt that it was the perfect place to photograph their engagement session. We had plans to meet in Central Park and possibly hit up their old stomping grounds over on the Upper East side, but the weather had something else in mind. Like torrential downpours, all day long. This was the kind of rain that even an umbrella couldn't protect you from because it was coming sideways. So we decided to go with Plan B: the New York Public Library. A historic city landmark, it still gave us the quintessential New York vibe while providing us with two very key things - a roof and heat (because even though it was May, you definitely couldn't tell).
The library doesn't exactly encourage photo sessions so we had to keep our voices down and never stay in one place for too long. Oh, and one other thing - we are not allowed to use any additional lighting whatsoever, not even a flash. And although there are several windows, this building is pretty park inside, like most libraries. We weren't concerned about this because the lighting was very similar to that of most churches we go into, where the "no flash" rule is pretty much the norm. We have learned how to make the most of the light available. We have found that it encourages us to think about the light source in each room and how to use it to our advantage.
After exploring pretty much every room of the library - from the reading room to the basement stacks, we decided to finish up the session by heading out into the street for a few final shots. Because really, what is a NYC session without some shots with some traffic going by?
We love photographing on stairs because we they are filled with natural lines (the steps, the railing) that create so much more interest in a photo and draw the eye in.
So while these steps may seem empty now, they weren't like for long. It's NYC after all! Meghan and Marc just went with the flow sitting on the stairs, waiting for each person to walk by.
A chance meeting in the middle of the stairs, not unlike the night they met - she's walking out, he's walking in.
As far as staircases go, this is probably one of the coolest ones we have ever seen. Four sets of stairs in different directions?! (Are they sets of stairs? Would that mean eight staircases? Anyone know?)
Meghan and Marc are pretty much constantly laughing together. While by this window, Meghan was telling him not to make her laugh. Thankfully, it didn't work.
Isn't Meghan gorgeous? You can totally see why Marc didn't want to let her walk by.
Like pretty much other room in the library, the reference room was pretty crowded as well. Thankfully we were able to head over to this little corner and take advantage of the large lights on the tables and have some fun with that giant dictionary.
This is the reference section. Super quiet. The perfect setting for some snuggling, which makes no noise at all.
We knew we couldn't stay long in the Rose Main Reading Room without attracting much attention so we kept it on the move.
One of our favorite things is incorporating the surrounding people into any session we photograph in the city because that's one of the things that really define the city - all the people around you at any given time.
This was our final stop in the library, the stacks all the way in the basement. Pretty sure all of the people doing actual research in that room thought we were a little bit crazy.
Didn't do this on purpose but gotta admit I was pleasantly surprised to see that Meghan's hand (with the beautiful ring!) was resting on the New Jersey archives!!
You can't quite tell it in this shot but it was really coming down here. Thankfully we had found a scaffolding that Meghan and Marc could stand under and stay somewhat dry.
In this one you can actually see the rain coming down! But we couldn't end a NYC session without a cab whizzing by. Doesn't get more New York than that.
Meghan & Marc, thank you for trekking out in the rain with us! We had a great time with you both and can't wait to see you again in July!