est. 2008

Riverbed summer engagement

Mary Dougherty

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ABOUT mary

I'm a fine art film photographer living in the mountains and traveling to tell beautiful stories





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riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty01It was terrible timing. Rachel and Ryan met in Savannah, after both moving there from northern cities – Buffalo and Boston, respectively – and Rachel had just interviewed for a job back home. Sparks flew on their first date, and even though it was way to early to talk about, they both knew their relationship was one worth pursuing. They found a reason to spend more time together that first week and then Rachel stayed in Savannah, a big decision for such a pivotal moment.

They bonded over many things as they settled in to life in the south and their investment in each other paid off. Now engaged, they are planning a wedding for next June in Rachel’s home city.

Even though Rachel + Ryan  live a good 13 hours away and do as much as they possibly can when they are home, a few weeks ago they came to my house for their engagement session. I know, they came all the way to me. As if I could love them any more. Engagement session ideas are both plentiful and difficult to come by. It’s easy to fine ideas but hard to narrow them down to what fits. I had a long weekend of weddings and when they wanted to use the organic and rustic country that surrounds me I jumped at the chance to have them at the Mary Dougherty Photography studio (aka my house) . We set off on a Sunday evening to capture their engagement portraits.


Now, there are a few things about engagement sessions some people misunderstand. In the almost two hours I spent with Rachel and Ryan I not only had the opportunity to photograph them, but to talk and connect and hear about their life and relationship. I love that. We shared stories about finding jobs and when things don’t go as planned and at the end when Daphne stood on the porch and said goodbye (after they got in the car, she’s still shy) we felt like friends. Developing a relationship makes all the difference on a wedding day, and I think it’s what keeps me going, and arriving at each wedding genuinely excited to be there. Seriously, I am so happy for my couples and love witnessing their days.riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty04

So the benefit is twofold. Beautiful pictures. Building a Relationship. That’s kind of at the core of what I do. I’m so grateful Rachel and Ryan trusted me to photograph them – I can not wait to hear what everyone thinks and I’d love to connect on Facebook and Instagram with you!

All of the images in this blog post were shot on film! When we first set out for pictures I left my cards at home and started only with film. They were taken on the Contax 645 with Kodak Portra 400 and Tri-X 400 scanned by the Find Lab. I’m so glad I shot more with film because I love what we captured – but you can decide what you like best in the full gallery soon!riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty05riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty06riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty07riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty08riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty09riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty10riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty11riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty12riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty13riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty14riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty15riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty16riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty17riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty18riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty19riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty20riverbed_new_york_film_engagement_mary_dougherty21

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