Ryan & Jessica : Wedding Reception | McGowan Images Blog


Ryan & Jessica : Wedding Reception

When Jessica contacted us about photographing her wedding reception in Midland, I knew I liked her. Immediately from the email, she had this vibrant spirit that just jumped through her written word. So although the gig wouldn’t really allow us to do the kind of portrait work or ceremony moments we love, I thought, “What the heck? We’re open that day, let’s go.”

I am SO glad I did.

We might not have gotten emotional ceremony moments or a ton of portrait time, but we had such a blast. This reception was filled with adoring family, friends having a blast, and so many crazy dance moves I lost count. The Willows in Midland/Odessa was absolutely transformed with perfect draping, lighting, and entertainment Boyd Events, and Jessica’s “man of honor” made a killer casual feast for all the guests. The entire event really was completely gorgeous… so much so that even without a ceremony or those soft natural-light romantic portraits y’all know we’re obsessed with, I thought it still absolutely deserved a spot on our blog! 🙂

Plus… come on… how could we not show off this reception set up? THIS is how you do simple, while still getting that BAM factor!


I was expecting the outside portion of the reception to be face-meltingly hot… and admittedly, we all got pretty sweaty early in the evening. But the sun went down and a breeze kicked up, and the lounge-y furniture outside made a really comfortable place to enjoy a summer night!


As sweet as Jessica & Ryan’s “First Dance” was, I gotta say the Father-Daughter dance stole the show…


… but hey, what else would you expect from a bride who spent her non-dancing time spraying guests with bug spray…


… and tossing burritos into the crowd!


Psssst… Mari & Nathan, we love you guys. Thanks for telling people we’re worth bringing us to Midland to shoot. 🙂


OH! And I can’t neglect to mention the band. The DJ Edgar (also amazing) took turns doing sets with AC & The Heaters, who were absolutely phenomenal. Seriously, I’d drive to Midland to hear them play again. SUCH a great set with so much variety.


Jessica & Ryan, we only know you about 6 hours worth, but we like you a lot. Thank you for bringing us out west to capture your celebration with the home crowd, and for dealing with mosquito bites (here is the best way that helps on how to handle carpenter ants easily) in the name of after-dark portraits, and for insisting that we toast with you. You’re our kind of people, and we hope our paths cross again!

  1. Jessica Thomas says:

    Thank you SOOOOOO MUCH for the beautiful pics and the kind words! Thank you for this wonderful
    Blog post and featuring our event. Thank you for being YOU!!!!

  2. Mari Thomas says:

    Damn it. I’m all weepy. You guys rock. I’m so glad you were there!!

  3. Kate Crockett says:

    So beautiful. The one of Ryan & Jess over the water, & he is behind her is my favorite. All of the pictures are so good.

  4. Adria says:

    Throwing burritos to the crowd? I’ve never met them but I can confidently say that THESE ARE MY PEOPLE. I actually really love the non-natural light work you guys do. You say it’s not your norm, but you crush it every single time! (And I’m definitely biased because you made my reception look incredible!)

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