Mary + Stuart | a Mississippi River Sandbar Engagement

On the contact form on our website, I ask couples to list three words that describe them. This just gives me an idea of the bride and groom’s personalities before we even meet, and also makes them think about what makes them unique. When Mary filled out the form, one of the words she used was “rum.” I knew from that moment on that we were going to get along fabulously! She also listed “fun” and “kind” and after meeting and spending time with them, I couldn’t agree more.

I had to know right away how rum ties in to their relationship! Though they have been friends for over 10 years, they have only been an official couple for a little more than 2 of those. Mary jokes that it took some time for Stuart to “wise up,” but it’s obvious when seeing them together how much he loves her.

Stuart and Mary met and fell in love in Memphis, but now Stuart is living in Florida while completing his medical internship. Naturally, when Mary visits, they end up spending a lot of time at the beach. That’s what Florida is for, after all, right? They would make the most of their time together sipping tropical cocktails on the beach and deepening their love for each other before Mary had to return home to Memphis.

After the wedding, Mary will be joining him in Florida so that they can share cocktails on the beach whenever they want! To tie in their love of the beach, we just happened to find our own version of a Tennessee “beach.” Make sure you scroll all the way to the end for our epic river sandbar shots!

We met Mary and Stuart in midtown, at the little Mexican restaurant where they had their first date. We always suggest that our couples have a pre-shoot drink to help them relax a bit, if they want. After margaritas all around (see? I LOVE these two!!), we spent time roaming their favorite areas and getting to know each other better.

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They were pros right from the start! I’m sure the margaritas had nothing to do with it.

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I LOVED Mary’s teal dress. We completely agree on favorite colors!

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Another one of their early dates were spent in the Tennessee mountains. While we don’t exactly have any mountains here in Memphis, we wanted to incorporate the feel of the mountain trails and woods, so we moved on to Meeman-Shelby Forest State Park for the remainder of their session. The goldenrod and berry bushes were in full bloom, and it was a gorgeous time of year in the park!

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The park borders the Mississippi River, and we found this awesome spot on the river sandbar, right at sunset. I’m not sure I could find this spot again if I tried, but it made for some GORGEOUS photos! And hey, we got to include a Tennessee version of the beach after all! 😉

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Mary, you are stunning!

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My favorite! Seriously, look at that sky! But it doesn’t compare to these two!

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Mary and Stuart, thank you so much for spending a day with us (and chasing the sun for the perfect river shots)! We had such a great time with you, and I am a little sad that you will be leaving us after the wedding. It will be a beautiful day, though, and we can’t wait!

To see more Mississippi River engagements, click here, here, and here.


  • Theresa OBryan Wilson
    Posted at 06:12h, 21 October

    Beautiful ! Cant wait for the big day!
    Amy you are a wonderful photographer.

    • Amy
      Posted at 16:28h, 21 October

      Thank you Theresa! Mary and Stuart did all the hard work! 😉