My experience shooting an outdoor wedding at the Alta Resort, Utah


First Look

I had the privilege of shooting Laura and Kevin's wedding at Alta, UT a couple weeks ago. I was stoked to be able to be a part of the experience and capture the beginning of a new chapter in their life story. The Alta lodge, nestled at the top of Little Cottonwood Canyon, was the perfect outdoor venue to complement this outgoing and active couple. It's a local favorite for skiing during the winter and offers incredible hiking trails and views during the summer months. Laura and Kevin are avid climbers and spend a lot of time exploring the surrounding peaks and hiking trails. Devil's Castle and Mt. Superior set the perfect backdrop for the first look and wedding party images. My shooting style is photo-journalistic, choosing to shoot the in-between moments rather than traditional poses. Because of this, one of my favorite things to shoot is the first look. It's a time for the couple to share their initial time together without all of the distractions of the day. Although it only lasts 10-15 minutes, it's often the most memorable part of the wedding. While shooting Laura and Kevin, the wedding party made their way up the canyon along with clouds and a bit of rain, creating the perfect backdrop and luckily cooling down the temperature (which had been in the 90's all week). 

Luckily the Alta lodge had provided us with about 20 umbrellas to keep wedding party dry. Everyone was happy to work with the elements and weather. I couldn't have asked for a better wedding party with which to work.

The ceremony began shortly after on the patio at the lodge, which sits below Alta's classic, High Rustler ski run. Alta is an intimate, classic ski resort with old school amenities that give a rustic, but refined feel while being surrounded by the granite peaks of Little Cottonwood Canyon. Honestly, It's pretty rad venue if you're looking for one.

Wedding Party with Devil's Castle in the background

The ceremony had all the necessary elements, vows, a couple short talks, and a great backdrop without any extra fluff that tends to bore participants and couples.

After the ceremony, a quick cocktail hour and dinner began. Clouds began to roll in thicker as the sun began to set behind Mt. Superior, casting a shadow on the venue and allowing the string patio lights to set the mood for dancing and celebration. After the Father-Daughter and Mother-Son dances, a live folk blue-grass band started the evening festivities off right, getting everyone dancing and celebrating. This is my favorite time of the evening, all the major stress-inducing components are over and it's time for everyone to just relax and celebrate the Laura and Kevin. Eventually the storm got the best of the band and they moved inside, but the couple and many guests continued to brave the weather and stayed out as long as possible. The storm, in a way, forced people to "let their hair down" which was a lot of fun to shoot and work with.At last the weather finally won and guests moved indoors for the final few songs of the night.

If you're interested in having me shoot your wedding, drop me a line, I'd love to see if our styles match up. Here are a few key points on how I shoot weddings:

Photojournalistic: I keep posed and standard shots to a minimum, focusing in-between moments instead.

Outdoor: I love juxtaposing couples in formal wear in rustic or mountainous backdrops.

Second shooter: Every wedding I shoot is with a second shooter, my very talented and lovely wife. This ensures that every critical moment is captured.

All-Inclusive Cost: My rate is based on an all-day rate for two photographers. Typical weddings are from around noon to 10 at night; that's the approximate that time I bill for. 

Although, I'm based in Salt Lake City and love shooting Utah weddings, I'm open to and enjoy shooting destination weddings or elopements! Contact me and let's set up a time to sit down and discuss your unique day. -Lane

Ceremony at Alta Lodge

Festivities on the patio at the Alta Lodge

Dance party in the rain on the patio at the Alta Lodge


Additional Photos, click on any image to expand