A Match Made in Med School: Erica and Zach’s wedding at the Mandarin Oriental

Erica and Zach met the very first day of Harvard Medical School. The two quickly became friends, and Erica found herself wondering why the two weren’t dating. Then low and behold, Zach asked her out on a date. Just hours before the date she told her mother that she had a feeling this would be the last first date she would ever go on because Zach would be the man she was going to marry. Was she ever right! They were truly made for each other.

Erica and Zach are a perfect match, so it is fitting that they found a wedding planner that matched them perfectly in Holly. I always love photographing weddings that Holly has planned because I know they will be executed to perfection, have amazing details to photograph, and I will get to spend time with the awesomeness that is Holly Fawcett and her In the Pink Ink team. Speaking of teams, this time around mine included Shawn Black as my 2nd shooter and my husband Matt as my assistant and third shooter. Shawn did an outstanding job prepping Zach for the big reveal and used his 70-200 lens to beautifully capture Erica’s approach. He also made it possible for us to do the over 40 formal shots that Erica and Zach wanted within the allotted time by helping to set up each shot in a fun, quick and orderly fashion. Matt was super helpful as well. He was my motion activated light stand allowing me to get some shots that I’ve always wanted to get of the first dance with him directly behind the couple as I rotate around them, to make a beautiful hair light. And when he wasn’t holding lights for me, he was rocking our new 7D and getting great detail shots on his own.

Since the wedding was taking place at the magnificent Mandarin Oriental in Boston, Holly put together a subtle oriental theme that ran seamlessly throughout the wedding. This included live cherry blossoms, programs oragami folded into chinese fortune tellers, and pink chinese take out boxes for the candy bar. Erica added plenty of personal details as well. Somehow during her hectic schedule as a pediatric resident at Children’s Hospital, she found the time to draw out an elaborate Map O’ Love, that detailed all the locations in Boston that were important to their courtship. Yum Bunnies Cakery created a very unique cake topper for them. I asked Erica about it and she said that when she is stressed out, Zach tells her bedtime stories of a Type-A chipmunk and a laid back bear. She was thrilled when she saw Zach’s hilarious stories brought to life atop their cake. Last but not least, Erica had me create a guest book for them incorporating their photos from their engagement session. Their guests loved thumbing through our time at the Museum of Science where Erica and Zach embraced their inner nerdiness.

Throughout the night, I learned that Erica and Zach, as well as their friends and family, are extremely multi-talented. Erica was in an acapella group as an undergrad at Yale, and she beautifully serenaded Zach with the first song he ever downloaded onto her computer, Rascal Flatts’ God Bless the Broken Road. She was accompanied by the incredible Men In Black wedding band who provided OUTSTANDING music that kept the party going all night long playing a fab mix of classic wedding songs and current pop. They were so good that I seriously would go and pay to see them in concert just so I could hear them again. Jeff, their lead guitarist, also did a phenomenal job as the MC. The band was super accommodating to other guests who wanted to surprise Erica and Zach with performances. They even met up with one during the cocktail hour for a short rehearsal of his amazing rendition of Don’t Stop Believing, only with the lyrics creatively changed to fit the story of Erica and Zach’s lives. Zach’s brother Cody, who plays the base and was Zach’s best man, was incorporated into the band for a song or two as well. Then it was Zach’s turn to surprise us all. The guests took 10 napkins and created a huge jump rope. He showed off amazing feats of coordination and acrobatics. They found a way of getting everyone in on it by turning the jump rope into a limbo line. Then at the end of the night the band had all the girls get up on stage to perform one song, and then all the guys got up on stage for the next song. Zach and Erica gave everyone what they wanted — more cowbell! Erica’s mom, Zach’s mom, and Zach’s sisters sang and danced their hearts out. Erica’s dad even got up there to play the tambourine with Cody on the percussion sticks. The performances ended with Erica’s 97-year-old grandfather singing an old Polish folk song that got everyone clapping to the infectious beat of the chorus. Luckily In Focus Video was there to capture it all! You can see the highlight video here. It was certainly a night to remember!

In case you want a look like Erica’s on her special day, here are the details:
Dress: designed by Enzoani from Sabella Couture
Hair and Make Up: Blushing Brides
Flowers: A Wild Flower, June Rubin

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