Laketown Golf and Conference Center Wedding

Jon and Laura had a gorgeous sunny day for their outdoor fall wedding at Laketown Golf and Conference Center last month!  In Michigan it can be a little brave to hold and outdoor wedding, but that didn’t deter Jon and Laura from planning their outdoor ceremony!  In the past we have had outdoor weddings that ranged from 40 degrees to 98 degrees.  I don’t know what the actual temperature was, but it didn’t seem too hot or too cold!
Laura started her day at her parents home in Holland with hair and makeup.  Laura and her bridesmaids enjoyed spending time together getting ready as Jon went out to lunch with his groomsmen.  After they both arrived at Laketown and finished their preparations, they had a special first meeting outdoors near the golf course.

The sun was shinning, the temperature was perfect for an outdoor fall day, and love was in the air.  After the first meeting, we spent some time photographing the bride and groom, wedding party, and family.
The ceremony couldn’t have been more perfect.  The sun getting low in the sky as they celebrated the Lord’s supper with their children for the first time as a family during the wedding ceremony. It was a touching show of their dedication to Jesus and their family.  They also showed a little fun for their sporting interests… with a little Ohio State and Michigan rival reference.  Agree to disagree with this divided house of loyalties!

After the ceremony we all headed inside Laketown Golf and Conference Center for the evening celebrations.  The food was wonderful.  The music and dancing was spectacular.  Jon and Laura danced the night away.

It was an honor and a privilege to be able to share with Jon and Laura on their wedding day.  We captured some amazing pictures!  If you would like to see more of them, make sure you watch their slide show here.  Congratulations to Jon and Laura and to their families as you start your new life together!

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Grand Rapids area Wedding

Mike and Fiona had their Grand Rapids area wedding at Saint Sebastian Church in Byron Center.  It was a beautiful sunny day for all their friends and family to gather together and witness the marriage.  It also brought family together from all over the globe!  Fiona and her parents are from Germany, and used to live in GA.  Her parents now live in California.    They had relatives attend the wedding from Germany and most of the wedding party was from GA!   After the ceremony, we spent a little time doing some family pictures in the sanctuary and then spent some time doing beautiful portraits in the old historic church on the property.

We then loaded up in the limo they had rented, and  headed to the covered bridge in Ada.  That is a fun place to take a wedding party…. we created some great pictures outside and also inside the covered bridge.  It was a busy day at the Leonard Park!  After spending some time at the park, we finished up with some portraits at Sunnybrook Country club.

The reception was perfect at Sunnybrook County Club in Grandville.  Good food and drink, good friends and family, and some music always make for a great night.  Congratulations to Mike and Fiona, as they start their new life together as husband and wife.  If you would like to see more pictures, watch the slideshow here, then wish Mike and Fiona blessings in their new life!

St. Sebastian Church Wedding Wedding Ada Covered Bridge Sunny brook Country Club wedding Sunny brook Country Club wedding

Bay Pointe Inn Wedding

Brian and Julie picked a fall day for their Bay Pointe Inn wedding on Gun Lake in Michigan.  We had been watching the weather all week…. with rain in the forecast.  As the day started, we were hoping the rain would pass!  We kept a careful eye on the sky.  As Julie and Brian were in the wedding preparations, a small storm went through.  Finally, the air cleared, and we were able to go outdoors for some outdoor photos!

Brian and Julie have a total of 8 children, who made up the wedding party! It was a very special day for the two of them to join their families. We finished up some of the wedding party photos, but still had to do our bride and groom pictures when the rain started!  We found some nice places that had a covering at and near the Bay Pointe Inn.

As the rain started and stopped, the question loomed in the air… Will the ceremony be able to be held outdoors as planned?  They decided to postpone the start of the ceremony, hoping the rain would break… Finally, there was a break in the rain.  So, we all headed out to the ceremony site… shortly after the bride walked down the aisle, it started to rain!  Everyone ran for cover under the pavilion, and we finished the ceremony in the tent!

Brian is a firefighter, so he had a little fun with a fire extinguisher when he came out to remove the garter from Julie.  They danced the night away as the rain finished up for the evening.  Congratulations Brian and Julie!  If you would like to see more, make sure you watch the slideshow here!

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Amway Grand Plaza Wedding – Sam and JoAnna

Amway Grand Plaza Wedding – Sam and JoAnna were married last month in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  The morning preparations were done in the suites at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel.  It was a perfect location for their large wedding party. (14 bridesmaids and 15 groomsmen!)  The morning was full of activity as the preparations continued.  After getting ready at the Amway, Sam and the guys spent a little time outdoors having some of their groomsmen pictures taken, while JoAnna and some of her bridesmaids headed to her house for her to get her wedding dress on.   As JoAnna walked down the stairs for the first time in her dress, and her bridesmaids and father saw her, they smiled in delight!

The ceremony was held at St. Nicholas. It was a beautiful ceremony filled with tradition and God’s blessings.  The beautiful sanctuary was so stunning, and was fitting for such a beautiful wedding.

After the ceremony, the guests were transported back to the Amway, while we spent some time in the church doing group photos, then we headed to downtown Grand Rapids for a few more outdoor wedding pictures of the wedding party.  We stopped at the famous blue bridge, and also did some photos outside by the Amway.

The guests were spending time at the cocktail hour, as they waited the grand opening of the reception room.  It was absolutely beautiful.  Bellisario Florist took care of the beautiful decorations.  The floral arrangements were stunning, as well as the lighting, candles, and place settings.  A fairytale wedding for sure.

Make sure you take a peek at the slideshow HERE to see more pictures from Sam and JoAnna’s special day!Amway Grand Plaza Hotel Wedding St. Nicolas Church Wedding St. Nicolas Church Wedding Grand Rapids Wedding Bellisario Florist Wedding Amway Grand Plaza Hotel Wedding

Grand Rapids Michigan Wedding

Grand Rapids Michigan Wedding – Kim and Ryan held their summer wedding in Grand Rapids earlier this month! The girls all started off their day by having their hair and makeup done at Pure Salon in downtown Grand Rapids.    It was the perfect setting to accommodate the bridal party, with beautiful natural light windows!  From there, we headed over to Brookside CRC.  The sun shown brightly, with blue skies abundant!  The ceremony was perfect… they had a candle lighting ceremony with all the guests.  This is something I have not seen before, and it was beautiful, as the friends and family of the bride and groom participated in this.

After the ceremony, we headed over to the beautiful “Sem Pond” at Calvin College.  The sun was a little lower in the sky, giving us gorgeous lighting for our post ceremony portraits of the wedding party, and the bride and groom.

After leaving Calvin College, we headed over to The Bluff Banquet and Conference Center for a fun filled reception.   The food was incredible, complete with a mashed potato bar… served in martini glasses!  We were able to slip outside twice for pictures at the Bluff… once just as the sun was going down for some outdoor evening shots, and once after it was dark for some fun with sparklers.

It was so fun working with Kim and Ryan and their families on their wedding day!  If you would like to see more of their portraits, make sure to check out the slide show here:

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Weaver House at Pine Bend Wedding in West Michigan

We could not have asked for a more perfect day in West Michigan for an outdoor wedding at the Weaver House at Pine Bend! The sun was shining through the hazy thin clouds that were spotting the bright blue sky on Saturday May 21st. The birds were singing as a gentle wind blew through the trees overlooking the storybook setting for Eric and Sarah’s outdoor wedding at the Weaver House at Pine Bend (close to Lake Michigan in West Olive). The historic home built in 1901 was the perfect backdrop for this couple’s vision of a classic 1920’s themed wedding. From the soft hued roses and gold rimmed china place settings gracing the tables under the tent, it was a picture perfect setting.

We started the morning greeting Eric and his groomsmen as they arrived (while the ladies were at the salon finishing up with hair and makeup). The estate boasts a cute little one room cottage next to the wedding pergola, which was an ideal spot for the men to gather and prepare for the day ahead. We took advantage of the beautiful grounds and wrap around porch surrounding the home, and saved the inside of the home for the girls to dress and prepare once they arrived. The home has been meticulously maintained over the past century and is filled with period furniture and antiques, perfect for creating timeless wedding photographs! Once the ladies arrived they were whisked upstairs to the private bedrooms for dressing and adding the finishing touches before the big day was to begin!

The ceremony went off without a hitch, and we enjoyed photographing both the bride and groom’s families (which even included a grandmother who travelled from Holland (the country) to attend the wedding! Guests were treated to a delicious meal catered on site and presented beautifully, followed by an assortment of cupcake flavors… strawberry, chocolate, and lemon. No detail was overlooked, and the 1920’s theme continued on the tables with tins of roses, candles and strings of pearls joining the gold rimmed china and crystal glasses. The Bride and Groom shared a table for 2 with their jar of customized lollipops they shared with guests after dinner.

We’d love for you to see more of our favorite images from Eric and Sarah’s beautiful wedding day… feel free to watch their slideshow here!


The Weaver House at Pine Bend Wedding by Kari Douma Photography

The Weaver House at Pine Bend Wedding by Kari Douma Photography

The Weaver House at Pine Bend Wedding in West Michigan by Kari Douma PhotographyThe Weaver House at Pine Bend Wedding by Kari Douma Photography


The Weaver House at Pine Bend Wedding in West Michigan by Kari Douma Photography

Thousand Oaks Wedding in Grand Rapids

It was a perfect spring day for Mike and Kalie’s wedding at Thousand Oaks in Grand Rapids last month.  Spring was in the air… warm temperatures, gentle breezes, blue skies, set the scene for a beautiful wedding.

Kalie arrived at Thousand Oaks Country Club mid morning after she was finished having her hair done.  The girls gathered in the clubhouse to have their make-up done as the happy chattering bride and bridesmaids prepared for the event.  Mike arrived shortly after, and was ready to see his bride.

Before the days activities started, Kalie had a meeting to see her father.  It was a touching moment, when her father looked at his baby all ready for her special day.  Then, it was time for Kalie and Mike to have their first look.  We love to photograph this moment!  It is a special time between the bride and groom, and they always cherish those memories in the form of pictures!

The next few hours were spent photographing the bride and groom, the wedding party, and the family before the ceremony started.  The small ceremony was held in the clubhouse, and was a beautiful confirmation of Mike and Kalie’s love for each other.   Kalie carried her grandmother’s Bible in the ceremony, which was a beautiful testimony of her love for her grandmother and her faith.

The evening was completed with a great meal and party at the reception.  The open outdoor deck allowed for guests to mingle and visit with each other, while other guests enjoyed the photo booth and dancing indoors.  Congratulations to Mike and Kalie!  If you would like to see more of Mike and Kalie’s wedding day pictures, make sure you check out the slideshow here!

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Welcome to Kari Douma Photography!

Kari and Jayne

Welcome to Kari Douma Photography
If you are just finding our website and blog, we’re happy you’re here! It’s been awhile since we’ve introduced ourselves here on the blog, so we’d like to take a few minutes to tell you who we are and how we choose the profession of Photography! 

Kari’s passion for photography grew from a love of capturing the fleeting moments of her four children growing up, and has since grown into an exciting and successful career! She decided to launch Kari Douma Photography out of her home based studio over 12 years ago, and since then the business has continued to grow! In 2009 she decided to move the studio out of her home, into a professional studio with more space, located in Downtown Grandville, Michigan. We’re located just 7 miles west of Grand Rapids, which is famous for gathering artists from around the world for the annual Art Prize competition, and also known as Beer City for it’s famous Founders Brewing micro-brewery (among many others). West Michigan is also home to the largest freshwater lakes in the world, the Great Lakes… the beautiful, sandy beaches of Lake Michigan are only 20 miles from our studio!

After moving to the new studio, Kari also hired an employee. Kari mentored multiple interns over the years, and in 2009 she decided to hire Jayne (after she completed her one year internship with KDP). Jayne graduated with a minor in Photography from Central Michigan University, and after years of always being the “unofficial photographer” for every family event, she decided to further her education to become a professional photographer (and has felt blessed to work with Kari ever since)! We really enjoy photographing weddings together (people always ask if we’re sisters) and love meeting with new clients to create the custom photography experience and beautiful portraits each one is hoping for!

Over the past decade Kari’s passion for learning and striving for excellence has taken her all over the country learning from the top photographers in the world! She earned her Master of Photography degree in 2012, and her Craftsman’s Degree in 2014. Kari has used her vast knowledge and unique skill to create award winning images that have earned her accolades too numerous to mention (in the categories of portrait, wedding, landscape and commercial). A few of her most recent awards are the ASP District Elite Award (covering 12 U.S. states and 4 Canadian provinces) as well as being named Michigan Photographer of the Year (2016) as well as Photographer of the Year (2012-2016) by the Professional Photographers of West Michigan. She has also earned many national awards and honors over the years. Kari absolutely loves to compete in Print Competition, and that passion shows through in the portraits she creates for clients also!

More than any award, at Kari Douma Photography we just love people! Part of the reason Kari has earned so much national recognition is due to the amazing clients we have been blessed to photograph over the years! The weddings, newborns, children, families, and seniors we photograph become dear friends, people we grow to love over the years! We can’t explain the joy we feel when a family we’ve photographed for years sends their child off to college with the portraits we’ve created displaying their story along the walls of their home. We’re thrilled when we’re asked to to photograph the wedding a few years later, and then beyond excited to meet and capture the amazing details when they welcome their first baby into the world. There are no words for how abundantly blessed we feel when each family chooses us to record all those precious memories over the years, and we love creating those priceless images that will be cherished for generations to come.

We absolutely love what we do, and we can’t wait to meet you! Please don’t hesitate to call or email Kari to set up a time to meet with us at our Studio… we look forward to getting to know you, and anticipate creating a beautiful photojournalistic story to tell your family’s journey too. You can reach us at our Studio by appointment: 616-437-5603 or email Kari at .


Kam and Sara | Ballroom at the McKay Tower Wedding

Kam and Sara had a Ballroom at the McKay Tower wedding on New Year’s Eve!  What better way to spend the New Year by ringing it in with friends and family at a Grand Rapids wedding.  It was a perfect day that started at the Amway Grand Plaza hotel.  Kam waited as Sara approached him in the lobby for their first meeting.  I love that time when the groom turns around to see his bride for the first time!  Such a special time, and I love to photograph it!  After Kam and Sara’s first meeting, we stayed in the hotel lobby for some bride and groom along with wedding party portraits.  The Christmas tree made for a perfect accent to their wedding portraits.
Amway Grand Plaza Hotel Wedding

We then went outside for a few short minutes to photograph the wedding party.  It was cold!  But, they were tough, and we quickly took off jackets to get some beautiful outdoor portraits across the street at the DeVos Place.  The girls were cold, but put on their smiles as they tried not to look cold!  (The guys never do too bad when outdoors… the at least have jackets with their tuxes!)  Next we went to Rosa Parks Circle to get just a couple more bride and groom pictures.
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The beautiful Ballroom at the McKay tower in Grand Rapids was the location for the ceremony and the reception.  It was absolutely stunning.  I love the colored chandeliers and the led lighting for the reception. The colors really make the pictures pop! This is a top notch wedding venue if you ask me!  We were also able to sneak out to the Blue Bridge at twilight to catch some evening portraits with Grand Rapids skyline as our backdrop.  Congratulations Kam and Sara!  If you want to see a few more of their wedding day pictures, watch their slideshow here!

McKay Tower Ballroom Wedding

Emily and John! | A West Michigan Wedding

Emily and John and a gorgeous day for their West Michigan wedding!  The sun was shining, and the fall colors just started to turn.  We started the morning at Design One Salon and Spa in Grandville.  After Emily and her bridesmaids’ hair was perfectly done, they headed to Emily’s family home to finish getting her makeup done and dress on.  Emily’s dress was beautiful!  We couldn’t resist photographing it in the large window overlooking the scenery outside.

West Michigan Wedding

The ceremony was held at St. Joseph Church in Conklin, Michigan.  John’s face was priceless as he saw his bride coming down the Aisle.  After the ceremony we headed back to the scenic property that Emily’s family lived.  There was a gorgeous overlook from the back of the house that had beautiful fall colors.  It made a perfect backdrop for John and Emily’s wedding portraits.

West Michigan Wedding Photography

Then, to make things more perfect, there was an orchard on the property right next to theirs.  I LOVE photographing in orchards!  Photographing in-between the rows, and using the trees in the foreground and background just makes the photo-geek in me get excited!  As you can guess, the pictures of John and Emily in the orchard are my favorite.  Th sun light was getting low in the sky, and the way the sun skimmed across the leaves was stunning.

West Michigan Wedding

After spending some time for wedding portraits at Emily’s family home, we went to English Hills Country Club.   After toasting, cake cutting, and a fantastic dinner, they spent the evening visiting with their family and friends.  It was such a fun evening for family and friends to visit and socialize with each other.  Thank you to John and Emily for letting us share in your special day.  We are truly honored!  If you would like to see more pictures, don’t forget to watch the slideshow here!

English Hills Wedding


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