Jamaica Wedding Photographer | A Celebration 21 Years in the Making

It’s fun to travel to places like Jamaica to photograph weddings.  Exotic landscapes, unseasonably warm temperatures, and new sources of inspiration are part of what make the allure of weddings like these so exciting.  But even when I’m wiggling my toes into the sand feeling the cool island breeze tickle my skin, I can’t escape that the joy of this job is the people I document.  Heather and Luke have been dating for 21 years.  How many couples, married or not, do you know who have been together that long?  It’s an astounding statistic, and the story behind it came alive over the few days I spent with them.  A story that began in 6th grade when Luke fell in love with Heather at first sight.  It continues through college, across multiple creative careers in places like Oregon, LA and Wyoming, and pauses briefly today to be formally recognized today by 28 of their closest family and friends.

Heather and Luke wrote their own vows for the wedding ceremony, which took place on a small beach outside their Coral Cove Villa in Discovery Bay, Jamaica.  They exchanged words that were honest and inspiring.  They talked about how much strength they had given each other over the years, how the arc of their lives was a path they could have only taken together.  It was simple and beautiful.  It’s these moments that inspire me as a photographer and business owner, and transcend venues and latitudes.  For me, it’s always about the people.

A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.

These invitations were handmade by Heather and Luke.  I am so envious of their PhD in DIY!

A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.

Luke and Heather rented 2 adjoining villas to host many of their guests and the actual wedding site.  It was beachfront and straight up beautiful. A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.

A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.

Heather’s friend, pictured above, made this dress for her wedding.  I love all the personal touches in this wedding!

A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.

The Coral Cove Villas were fully staffed, making renting a house an alluring option over staying at a resort.

A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.

Heather and Luke have a really unique connection and chemistry.  It’s beautiful and enviable.

A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.

Heather and Luke’s officiant and long-time friend, Ben, was with them when they got engaged at Machu Pichu last year.  He showed me the shots he got of Heather saying yes.  It’s so amazing that they have documentation of this moment!

A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.

From slow dance to a surprise synchronized performance, I’ve never seen any couple transition quite as well as these two.

A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.A bride and groom from the US get married in Jamaica.

Karen is a Boston-based photographer specializing in family history.  You can see more of her work online at www.kkpforlife.com or on Facebook.  If you’d like to contact her directly, you can find her at karen@kkpforlife.com.

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  • May 16, 2016 - 9:27 pm

    KLC - So great KKP! Lots of awesome moments captured and super natural and easy portraits. And its always pretty amazing to shoot in paradise!ReplyCancel

    • May 17, 2016 - 3:45 pm

      Karen Kelly Photography - Thank you so much KLC! Appreciate you taking the time to check it out, and a huge compliment coming from you! 😉ReplyCancel

  • May 17, 2016 - 3:28 pm

    Mark Sedgeman - Your photos were impressive in your intimacy with Luke and Heather…a very warm and thoughtful group of shots capturing the significance of their union. Thanks for sharing them with all of us.Your work illuminated little corners of each of them that captured their inner lives. Especially enjoyed the details that took in a fuller picture….the multiple shots that exhibited the same subject as,for example,shots of Heather’s wedding dress top to bottom (two shots).Since health issues made it impossible to actually be there it was a lovely visit to the obviously happy event. I also want to mention a few shots that were meaningful….the dances really gave a great example of the coordination and union of Luke and Heather. Thanks again.ReplyCancel

    • May 17, 2016 - 3:44 pm

      Karen Kelly Photography - Thank you so much for your heartfelt note Mark! I’m so glad to hear that the images gave you a lovely window into the intimacy of Luke and Heather’s nuptials. I appreciate you taking the time to check out my work and leave a note 🙂ReplyCancel

  • May 20, 2016 - 8:08 am

    Ben F. Espanto - It’s amazing how you not only captured these breathtaking images, you perfectly encapsulated the feelings we all felt during the event. I’m not going to lie. I got a little teary-eyed when I saw these. I keep coming back to this page to relive all the moments.

    You are a brilliant historian and an amazing photographer!ReplyCancel

    • May 21, 2016 - 3:33 pm

      Karen Kelly Photography - Ben, this means so much to me! Thank you for taking the time to leave me a note. I know how much Heather and Luke mean to you, and nothing could make me happier to know that the images captured the emotions of the day. In truth, I like to think of myself as a historian via the use of images, so when I read that sentence it touched me in the deepest places. Thank you. I hope our paths cross again sometime in the future!ReplyCancel

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