I had the pleasure of photographing Derrica and Shawn yesterday for their engagement photo. The weather here in New York has – finally! – taken a turn for the better, and Saturday was absolutely glorious.
Derrica and Shawn are Brooklynites through and through, and their engagement shoot was a celebration of their love for both each other and their neighborhood. We started off in front of the Brooklyn Museum, where several other brides had the same location in mind for a shoot. Taking full advantage of the space, we ventured across the museum’s catwalk and were able to avoid the crowds.
Walking along Flatbush Avenue, we then headed over to Five Myles, an art gallery begun by Shawn’s mother in 1999. The gallery focuses on fostering the community’s interest in innovative experimental work, and often exhibits the work of art rooted in non-Western cultures. By the way, check out the stripes: Shawn painted the front gate of the gallery.
And as New Yorkers, we would be remiss without including photos of our city’s preferred method of transportation…the subway. Derrica and Shawn have a subway theme to their wedding reception decorations and stationery, so I made sure to build photos taken in the subway into my shot list.
We then headed over to Grand Army Plaza, which I think is one of the most beautiful spots in Brooklyn. The fountain was going full blast, and sure enough, there were two bridal parties ahead of us at the park. But no matter, we got some great photos, and the lighting was perfect.
The final stop on our engagement tour was Mullane’s: Derrica and Shawn’s favorite local watering hole. The laid-back vibe of this bar is fantastic. Derrica tells me it only gets crazy during football season, so now is the time to visit. Note the warring jerseys: these two are fierce when it comes to football.
Of course you’re wondering how this lovely couple met in the first place? Think back seven years to the day before Derrica’s birthday, when she and her best friend visited the East Village restaurant, La Linea. There – owning the dance floor – was none other than Shawn. Derrica noticed his moves. As a lesson to all men out there, Shawn took the bold move of going up to Derrica and telling her she couldn’t leave the restaurant until she kissed him. She did, and then promptly had to leave with her friend, but Shawn’s bold move intrigued her. After a short vacation, she returned to Brooklyn and they got in touch. The rest, as they say, is history.
But while Shawn was brave that night at La Linea, he was a nervous wreck asking Derrica for her hand in marriage. It took some time to finally work up the nerve, but he asked Derrica to be his wife while they were both alone in the kitchen of her childhood home in Baltimore.
Derrica says her immediate thought after she said yes was, ‘now what?’ Well, you start planning a wedding! Look for more photos of these happy lovebirds when they finally say ‘I do’ at the Picnic House in Prospect Park on October 3rd of this year (#Mclane15).
For more recent photos by Brooklyn Museum of Art engagement photographer, Kelly Williams, please visit her website.
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