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I capture the unspoken — the glances, the silences — drawing from New York's pulse and the richness of global cultures. Every wedding is its own intricate narrative. Rooted in theatre and life's everyday rhythms, I document moments both transient and timeless. 

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Sunny spring wedding at the Manhattan Marriage Bureau

Sunny spring wedding at the Manhattan Marriage Bureau

This sunny spring wedding at the Manhattan Marriage Bureau was everything I could ask for as a wedding photographer.  Sweet clients who were up for anything?  A visit to some of my favorite locations?  Several hours to create portraits?  Sign me up anytime!

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We started our day at the Manhattan Marriage Bureau, one of my favorite places in the city.  It’s a quirky space with a fantastic, only-in-New-York vibe. This bureau has a long history dating back to the late 19th century, serving as the go-to place for New Yorkers and out-of-towners alike to obtain marriage licenses and participate in civil ceremonies.

The Manhattan Marriage Bureau, located at 141 Worth Street, is an important institution for couples looking to tie the knot in New York City. The building is part of the Louis J. Lefkowitz State Office Building, which was completed in 1930. It is a classic example of the Art Deco architectural style, which was highly popular during the time of its construction.

The building’s exterior features a mix of limestone and brick, while the interior boasts an impressive grand staircase, terrazzo floors, and decorative metalwork. The Manhattan Marriage Bureau was relocated to this building in 2009, where it occupies a newly renovated and modernized space designed by the architectural firm Beyer Blinder Belle.

The renovation aimed to create a more welcoming and elegant environment for couples and their guests. The new space includes a stylish waiting area, private rooms for marriage ceremonies, and a photo booth area with the iconic backdrop of the “I DO” artwork by pop artist Stephen Powers.

The Municipal Building

After the Marriage Bureau, we walked over to the NYC Municipal Building to start the portraits of the couple together. I really adore photographing here becasue it’s simply just so uniquely lovely. It also has a fascinating history.

The David N. Dinkins Manhattan Municipal Building, commonly referred to as the Manhattan Municipal Building or simply the Municipal Building, is a significant and historic government building in New York City. Located at 1 Centre Street in Lower Manhattan, the building was completed in 1914 and was designed by the prominent architectural firm McKim, Mead & White.

The building’s architecture is a mix of Beaux-Arts and neo-Renaissance styles, featuring an elegant and ornate design. It has 40 floors and stands at a height of 580 feet (177 meters), making it one of the tallest government buildings in the United States. The building’s most distinctive feature is its iconic 25-foot (7.6-meter) tall statue called “Civic Fame,” which stands atop the central tower. Designed by sculptor Adolph A. Weinman, the statue is made of gilded copper and depicts a woman holding a crown with five turrets, representing the five boroughs of New York City.

The Municipal Building was originally constructed to house various city government offices, which had outgrown the space at the City Hall. Today, it continues to serve as the headquarters for multiple city agencies, including the Department of Citywide Administrative Services, the Office of Payroll Administration, and the Public Advocate’s Office.

The building was renamed in honor of David N. Dinkins, the 106th Mayor of New York City, in 2015. It is an important part of New York City’s architectural and civic history, and it remains a landmark in the Lower Manhattan skyline.  It’s also a really, really great place for wedding photos!

The Brooklyn Bridge–City Hall/Chambers Street subway station

After photos at the Municipal Building we walked a few steps over to my secret (well, not so secret anymore!) best-subway-station-ever favorite spot near City Hall.

The Brooklyn Bridge–City Hall/Chambers Street subway station is a complex of interconnected stations in Lower Manhattan, New York City. It serves several lines of the New York City Subway system, including the 4, 5, 6, J, and Z lines. The station complex is located near several important landmarks, such as City Hall, the Brooklyn Bridge, and the Manhattan Municipal Building.

The station has two primary sections: the IRT Lexington Avenue Line (4, 5, and 6 trains) and the BMT Nassau Street Line (J and Z trains). The IRT section, originally opened in 1904, is one of the oldest stations in the subway system. The BMT section opened later, in 1913. These sections are connected by passageways, making it convenient for passengers to transfer between the different lines.

The Brooklyn Bridge–City Hall/Chambers Street station has several entrances and exits that provide access to various nearby destinations. Some of these exits are connected to the nearby City Hall Park, the Manhattan Municipal Building, and the entrances to the Brooklyn Bridge pedestrian walkway.

The station’s architecture and design reflect its age and history, with features such as mosaic tilework, ornate metalwork, and vaulted ceilings. The station has undergone renovations and improvements over the years to maintain its functionality and appearance.

For such a busy space it’s always surprisingly lovely and easy to photograph it with a seriously private, old-world vibe.

Oasis Park at the Battery Park City Esplanade

Next on our NYC elopement adventure, we grabbed a quick Uber and went over to wander around Oasis Park.

Oasis Park is party of the Battery Park City Esplanade.  This is  a picturesque waterfront promenade located in the Battery Park City neighborhood on the west side of Manhattan, New York City. Stretching for about 1.2 miles (1.9 kilometers) along the Hudson River, the esplanade offers spectacular views of the river, the Statue of Liberty, and the skyline of Jersey City.

Designed to provide a serene, green space for residents and visitors alike, the esplanade features well-maintained gardens, lush lawns, tree-lined paths, and several small parks and plazas. As you stroll along the walkway, you’ll come across various art installations, memorials, and sculptures that add to the visual interest of the area.

The Battery Park City Esplanade is a favorite destination for jogging, biking, and walking, as well as for leisurely activities like picnicking, reading, or simply taking in the views. Along the path, you’ll find seating areas and lookout points that allow you to pause and appreciate the surroundings. The esplanade also connects to several piers, such as Pier A and North Cove Marina, which offer additional recreational and dining options.

The esplanade forms part of the larger Manhattan Waterfront Greenway, a 32-mile (51-kilometer) pathway that encircles the entire island of Manhattan, offering a continuous route for walking, jogging, and biking along the waterfront. The Battery Park City Esplanade is an excellent example of urban planning that successfully combines natural beauty and recreational spaces in a bustling city environment.

Oasis Park is my favorite part of the Esplanade.  I love the arched steps and the curved bridge!

South Street Seaport

We finished our tour of lower Manhattan with a visit to the South Street Seaport for some final photos.

South Street Seaport is a historic district and cultural hub located in Lower Manhattan, New York City, along the East River. The area is known for its rich maritime history, beautifully preserved 19th-century architecture, and vibrant atmosphere. South Street Seaport is bounded by the Financial District to the west, the East River to the east, and spans from roughly Fulton Street to the Brooklyn Bridge.

The South Street Seaport Museum, founded in 1967, is an essential institution in the district, dedicated to preserving and celebrating the area’s maritime heritage. The museum showcases exhibits on New York City’s maritime past, historic ships, and the city’s role as a major port. Some of the museum’s notable historic ships include the Peking, the Wavertree, and the Ambrose.

In addition to its historical attractions, South Street Seaport is a popular destination for shopping, dining, and entertainment. The area is home to various shops, ranging from small boutiques to major retailers. A number of restaurants, bars, and cafes can be found in the district, offering diverse cuisine options and waterfront dining experiences.

South Street Seaport also hosts a variety of events and activities throughout the year, including outdoor concerts, food festivals, and art installations. The district’s cobblestone streets and unique atmosphere make it a favorite spot for both tourists and locals, providing a charming escape from the hustle and bustle of the surrounding city.  It’s why it’s one of my favorite spots for portraits, whether it’s for a wedding day, engagement session, or family session.

In conclusion…

This sunny spring wedding at the Manhattan Marriage Bureau provided an unforgettable experience for the couple (and myself!), as we ventured through some of the most iconic locations in New York City. From the historic Marriage Bureau and the grand Manhattan Municipal Building to the picturesque Battery Park City Esplanade and the charming South Street Seaport, this wedding day was filled with beautiful backdrops and such charming moments.

This sweet day serves as a testament to the undeniable allure and magic that New York City has to offer, making it a perfect destination for couples seeking a truly remarkable wedding experience.


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