Potok's World Photography

As you plan your wedding celebrations, picking the right location for your ceremony and/or reception is obviously critical. Your nuptials should be a celebration of you and your future spouse. As such, they should reflect your personalities and highlight the things that are important to you. If your religious beliefs are a key part of who you are as a couple, then a ceremony in your house of worship is a must. If you and your intended love nature, then an outdoor wedding is probably the best fit. If you fell in love over your shared support of a sports team, then picking a location that celebrates that is a lovely idea.

Finding places that suit your religious and personal preferences will help ensure that your wedding has the right feel and atmosphere. As DC wedding photographers, we would suggest that you also pay attention to how the venues look. By that, we mean that the locations should have a visual aesthetic that appeals to you and your beloved. They should look beautiful, obviously, and should help make you look beautiful. But more importantly, their look should help convey the feel and atmosphere of your wedding to the viewer. In 20 years, the pictures that we take for you will be among the most important tools you have for remembering your wedding day. If the setting does not accurate reflect how things felt at your nuptials, the photos will be less effective.

In our time documenting Washington weddings photographically, we have obviously photographed at just about every kind of venue. This was hardly a surprise to us coming into this business. We knew that we would be photographing weddings at churches and other houses of worship, of course. We also imagined ourselves taking pictures of brides and grooms at the numerous luxury hotels in the Nation’s Capital. Given that we ply our trade in Washington, we also looked forward to nuptials in museums and other historical buildings. We were also quite familiar with the broader DC metro area and knew what to expect in the suburbs. Though we had not been to Northern Virginia’s wine country, we knew that that region had some beautiful outdoor venues.

We have been surprised, however, to have documented numerous nuptials at country clubs. When imagining the locations where we would take pictures of weddings, why did we not think of golf courses? Frankly, we are not sure. After all, country clubs have everything that you and your intended would want in a venue. For starters, they offer both indoor and outdoor facilities — a big selling point for many future spouses. If you want a ceremony inside, most golf courses have swanky clubhouses equipped with banquet and reception hall spaces. Those rooms are great for elegant and classy indoor marriage ceremonies and receptions. Any Washington, DC, wedding photographer can tell you that most indoor country club nuptials look just as good on film as any luxury hotel.

Country clubs also have acres and acres of outdoor spaces if you and your beloved want Mother Nature to host your wedding. Not all of those are available for wedding celebrations, of course. Few DC-area golf courses would allow you to exchange their vows in the middle of a fairway! But most of these wedding venues do have other outdoor areas in which fiancés can tie the knot. And in the opinion of these DC wedding photographers, those are great spots for ceremonies! The care that goes into the groundskeeping of a golf course guarantees green surroundings pretty much year-round. And that makes for gorgeous photos of you getting married!

The photograph featured here shows that the natural beauty of most golf courses is ideal for couples portraits as well. DC-area newlyweds who want rustic portraiture sometimes need to hop in their limos and drive a bit to find them. This is especially true if your nuptials take place in downtown Washington, DC. Though the Nation’s Capital does have some nice green spaces, it can be hard to locate truly rustic settings. And those that exist are not always close to some of the downtown venues where couples tie the knot. That means that precious time must be set aside to get to and from these couples portrait locations. Getting married at a country club solves that problem nicely. You just need to step outside the clubhouse to find as much natural beauty as they need!

That is what this particular pair of newlyweds did after their wedding ceremony. They got married at her father’s swanky manor house in southern Delaware. Though the location was a bit of a drive from Washington, we were happy to make it. The opportunity to photograph this lovely couple tying the knot on a massive, terraced back lawn was well worth it. No Washington, DC, wedding photographer would pass up the chance to take pictures in such a beautiful setting!

Following the ceremony, the entire wedding drove to Baywood Greens, an opulent country club in the area. That is where the newlyweds and their guests danced the night away during the wedding reception. Before the fun started, however, we took the new husband and wife out for their couples portraits. We used the opportunity to explore Baywood Greens exquisitely manicured grounds. We brought the bride and groom to a garden area filled with exotic plants and somewhat reminiscent of a hedge maze. We took cool pictures of them posing at the entrance to a small tunnel for golf carts. Our favorite shot of the day, however, was the one posted here. We had them stand between us and the sun setting gorgeously over the course. That made the background the deep blue and orange sky you see behind them in the photo. Though they are largely silhouetted, the light spilling around them gives a bit of definition to what is facing the camera. That allows you to see the bride smiling, for example. It also shows her bouquet, which brings a very visually interesting element into the foreground. The result is one of the most visually striking portraits we have ever taken. A photo that perhaps would not have been possible if it had not been shot at a country club!

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