Are you planning a short-notice, small wedding or elopement?

Many couples don’t want to wait. They are planning to get married in the very near future, eloping, or rushing a small ceremony with their photographer, some close friends, and family but dispensing with or postponing the reception party. 

View WPJA photo stories from smaller weddings - WedElope | Choose love, not fear!

Charlottesville Wedding Photographers

Wedding Photographers of Charlottesville, Virginia

Charlottesville Elopement Photographers

In recent days, some of our United States photographers have expressed their desire to accommodate couples who don’t want to wait to be married and are rushing the ceremony.

Many brides and grooms around the globe are planning to elope and deciding to reschedule their original ideas for a big event. They are getting wed on a whim, but dispensing with or postponing all else.

The WPJA has an abundance of top-ranked, documentary-style elopement photographers who are available right now who understand that some weddings can’t wait. Find yours today!

Most Recent WPJA WedElope Story Awards
May 26th, 2020
Rockville, Maryland Elopement Photographer | Quarantine - Social Distance Front Yard Wedding Sign - on a warm Saturday at the beginning of May the bride and groom had the most beautiful wedding in the front of their home
May 26th, 2020
Namib Desert, Namibia Elopement Story Photography | The wedding ceremony took place overlooking the vast openness of the desert
May 26th, 2020
Sea Horse Beach Club, Oludeniz, Fethiye, Turkey Elopement Picture Story | The wedding solemnized on the beach at sunset was visually magnificent

Elopement Photographers for Small Virginia Weddings

Shooting an elopement or small Charlottesville wedding event is a wedding photojournalist’s dream: a fairly open schedule with lots of breathing space for creativity – it’s just the photographer, the couple, the officiant, and perhaps a few select companions.

Members are ready to document any themed, justice of the peace, courthouse, or elopement wedding, even if it is a Monday-Thursday ceremony. Search for the “Can Shoot Weddings on Short Notice!” message on the listings below.

We are anxious to create a picture story chronicling your modern, boutique, casual, small wedding from beginning to end. In this sense, it is no different from any other event that we have covered. The emphasis is on documenting key moments, capturing spontaneous displays of emotion, telling your real love story, as well as creating artistic portraits and details.

Map of Wedding Photojournalists Serving Charlottesville Couples

3 Documentary Wedding Photographers...

Heather Hughes Ostermaier was a newspaper staff photographer and has a passion for great wedding and elopement photography in VA.

After eight years as a newspaper staff photographer and a lifetime passion for photography, Heather moved into weddings full time in 2008. Her husband Rob (still a staff photographer) is often a second shooter and photographs a few on his own each year. They both LOVE to travel and currently call Virginia home so they stay around the DC, Eastern Shore, and Outer Banks area most of the time. Heather limits herself to 20-30 weddings a year (and Rob does less) so they can provide the personal attention to every couple that they are known for and artistically capture the unique moments & details that make every wedding special alongside fun and often candid portraits. True photojournalists at heart, they work unobtrusively so you can be free to enjoy the day instead of "smiling for the camera." Heather Hughes Ostermaier (formally Heather S. Hughes) has been published in USA Today, People, The Knot, and the "America 24/7" & "Virginia 24/7" books to name a few. She has captured hundreds of wedding stories since 2003. Both are graduates from Ohio University's prestigious Visual Communications program (where they met at the school's newspaper), taught at Truth with a Camera, and were accepted to attend the Eddie Adams Workshop in consecutive years. Heather was named Virginia's Small Newspaper Photographer of the Year and has won numerous awards for her lifestyle, sports, and wedding photography over the years. [Newport News Wedding Photographer]

Starting Price:
2999 (USD)
VA Wedding Photojournalism by Eva Russo with a background in newspaper journalism

Three time Pulitzer Prize nominee Eva Russo is the owner and main photographer for Photo Lady Love, Inc. She was born in Chicago, raised in Italy, moved to France and then settled back in the United States. A graduate in photojournalism from the prestigious Newhouse School at Syracuse University, Eva uses still photography, video and audio in her photographic storytelling on both short and long-term projects. Eva received two nominations for the Pulitzer Prize for her two-year-long project documenting living and working conditions in the Richmond City Jail. Her work focused on the daily life and struggles of the inmates as well as mental health and recidivism issues. Her third Pulitzer Prize nomination was for her work documenting a Vietnamese community in New Orleans East as it recovered from Hurricane Katrina. As a staff photographer for the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Richmond, Virginia, Eva covered daily assignments ranging from little league games to political campaigns to the Queen of England’s visit to Virginia. However, her passion for social documentary projects has always been what makes her tick. Her accolades and award-winning coverage for the Richmond Times-Dispatch include coverage of the Winter Olympics, the aftermath of the Virginia Tech shootings, the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in Mississippi, the 2009 Presidential Inauguration and the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. In 2010 Eva decided to embrace an exciting new adventure in her life and she founded Photo Lady Love, Inc. Applying the same storytelling concepts to a wedding day as she would to a newspaper story, Eva has devoted increasingly more time over the past few years to documenting joyful, tearful, momentous and exciting occasions in people’s lives. From wedding days to first babies, engagements to anniversaries, documenting love and joy has contributed a refreshing balance to Eva’s career and the stories she loves to tell. This new chapter in Eva’s career became an opportunity for further growth when, in the summer of 2012, Eva left her staff position at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, married her love and moved to the Washington, DC area. Eva now divides her time between documentary wedding and lifestyle coverage, freelancing for newspapers such as The Washington Post and The Washington Times, mentoring and teaching photography workshops with Momenta Workshops, documenting the work of local nonprofits and pursuing her love of food and food photography. Never letting the grass grow under her well-manicured photographer’s feet, but always stopping to smell the roses, Eva considers herself one of the lucky people who loves her job. [Alexandria Wedding Photographer]

Starting Price:
3400 (USD)
Spotsylvania, Virginia wedding photographer - Josef Sullivan

I was born and raised in New York, but I now reside in Spotsylvania, Virginia. I've lived in 4 out of 5 boroughs, and somehow we've landed here in Spotsylvania. I'm a husband, and a father of two boys. My wife and I were married in our early-middlish (←I made that word up!) twenties. We were married at a court house in Maryland, and have been married for over 10 years. Ironically, we have NO wedding photos, as they were taken with those disposable cameras, and the developer destroyed them! I caught a bit of a photography bug about 2-3 years later, and I've been shooting ever since. [Fredericksburg Wedding Photographer]

Starting Price:
3500 (USD)
WPJA Communiqué: Features
Not everyone has a lagoon or glacier next door, but there's no rule saying you can't have a small wedding in the great outdoors. Take advantage of natural sunshine and that open, airy feeling and give your guests some room to breathe! LESS IS MORE Instead of hemming your guests in on all sides, give them some elbow room, and legroom, too. There's no need to induce claustrophobia when you've got a wide, open space. Let your guests take in the view, especially if you've got a spectacular one. You...Read more
WHAT EXACTLY DOES IT MEAN TO ELOPE? If you look up the definition of “elope” in the Merriam-Webster dictionary , you’ll find a plethora of meanings making it quite clear how polarizing the word has become, and how it has transformed and evolved with the passage of time and even personal preference.Read more
Steven Herrschaft, of Hessen, is a wedding photographer for -
While some of us were fortunate enough to be born as extroverts, not everyone feels the same way. For a good chunk of the population, any number of the typical wedding day traditions can inspire anxiety and existential dread. This day is all about you, yes, but does that mean all the attention has to be on you as well? FROM VOWS TO CHITCHAT, WHICH REMAINS SACRED? Traditional weddings often require some degree of performance on the part of the couple, whether that is in the form of reciting...Read more
jperlman elk cove inn ceremony
Everyone always says that your wedding day is all about you. But let’s face it; that’s not always actually the case. Many couples stress over guest lists, planning, expenses, and all the frills and traditions of your standard large wedding that they may or may not even be interested in. Fortunately, though, the concept of small weddings is becoming increasingly popular for couples who either want to be able to completely customize their day where and when they want with the option...Read more
Lauren Lindley, of California, is a wedding photographer for -
While some people live for the hustle and bustle of a big wedding with extravagant décor and an impossibly long guest list, others find these kinds of weddings to be too much hoopla, preferring instead something simpler and quieter, allowing for more intimacy between them and their fiancés on this special day. So how do you infuse your wedding with all the romance but none of the fuss? ALONE AT LAST Many couples these days are opting to elope rather than planning a large wedding. For the no-...Read more
It’s no secret that these are strange times we’re going through right now, and there are many couples out there with weddings set in the near future who are left feeling uncertain and concerned about their futures. While that’s understandable, it’s also important to remember the reason you’re getting married in the first place; not for the grand celebration, but because you love each other and want to be together. REMEMBER WHAT'S IMPORTANT You’re in this position now, about to get married, for...Read more

RAVES, REVIEWS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS

Laura & Bryan

Photo by Heather Hughes Ostermaier

Hi Heather! Thank you!! We are so excited to see the pictures. Thanks you so much for being a part of our day and capturing all our special moments. We will treasure these forever. Feel free to share any photos you'd like. Thank you again so much! I hope that one day our paths might cross again. Until then, I wish you and your family all the best!