I was born and raised on the island of Nantucket, and for as long as I can remember I’ve been immersed in and inspired by the natural beauty of my home. I always had a camera in my hand when I was younger, chasing sunsets at the beach, at the horse farm where we spent most of our days and documenting my adventures with my friends in scrapbooks too numerous to count. I currently live on Nantucket with my husband Evan Schwanfelder and our adorable rescue pup Ziggy.
I spent many years abroad after college and then moved back to this lovely island. Living in such a scenic place and traveling the world to see other amazing sights has helped shape my perspective on photography. There’s incredible scenery everywhere, but it’s the special moments captured in those places that create lasting memories.
In 2009 I enrolled in the New England School of Photography for their two-year professional program and I studied photojournalism, wedding and portrait photography. After graduating I started my business on Nantucket. My photography style is natural and journalistic; my goal is to document the moments and experiences you’ll cherish forever. At your wedding I work within your day, meaning the flow of events is never interrupted and will never feel too directed.
I love wedding and portrait work along with the personal projects that I seek every off season. Last winter I spent time documenting an equine therapy center in Florida and pushing myself to exercise lessons gained at The Foundation Workshop in Texas. I’m always working to evolve my craft through workshops, attending conferences and pushing myself outside of my comfort zone. I believe that effort translates directly into the quality of the photos I make for you.
I am committed to capturing the human experience from the smallest elopement to the biggest wedding celebration, from every day life to the family vacation celebrating 60 years of marriage for the grandparents. The best part of my job is that each wedding, portrait session or engagement is a new artistic endeavor with a story to be told.
Katie was recently awarded a Fearless Award in Collection 44 in the ‘Real Moments’ category, won a Gold Award and Diamond Award from the Wedding Photojournalist Association and placed 2nd in the ISPWP Summer 2018 Awards in the ‘getting ready’ category. Katie is a Co-President of the Photographers Alliance of Nantucket, a member of Fearless Photographers, Wedding Photojournalist Association, International Society of Professional Wedding Photographers and The Nantucket Island Chamber of Commerce. She is also a board member of Petticoat Row, Women in Business and The Nantucket Arts Council.
Cary grew up in the mountains of Colorado and has a love for travel and all things outdoors. After high school he moved to Aspen Colorado to live an adventurous lifestyle. In 2008 he decided to take his passion for photography to the next level and enrolled in Colorado Mountain College’s Professional Photography program in Carbondale, Colorado. This is where he fell in love with photojournalism and the documentary approach to photography. Just after college he spent two years working as a photographer for the Aspen Daily News in Aspen, Colorado.
“I enjoyed my time at the newspaper very much but I had an urge to see more of the world so decided to make traveling a priority. In 2013 I moved to Nantucket for the summer to fund my winter travel plans and that’s when I met Katie Kaizer and was introduced to the world of wedding photography. I took an immediate liking to this new genre of photography and how the documentary style of photography translated so well to the wedding world. Making images of people on such an important day really means a lot to me. It’s now been 5 years of capturing moments with Katie, and after each summer I think back to all the families we get to meet and all the moments we get to photograph. It makes me smile. I really look forward to summers on the island and all the amazing people that we get to work with. I now spend my winters split between Aspen, CO and traveling in the winter.”
We go into every wedding celebration excited to see where the day takes us. We are happy to make the iconic and beautiful wedding portraits, but that’s just the beginning, from there we capture all that is unique to our couples and their relationships. It’s the pictures in between the scheduled events, the emotional moments you can’t plan for, that end up being the most valuable photos to my clients. We are happy to do some directing as needed, but my real passion is in making photos that will forever remind you of how you felt on your wedding day!
Our approach with the weddings starts long before the big day. We like to develop a relationship with couples from day one. I enjoy talking with you over the phone, meeting in person, hearing your story and getting to know your family. We’ll go over wedding details and talk about what’s most important to you.
My Nantucket Wedding schedule usually books up over a year in advance, so if you think we would be a good fit then don’t hesitate to get in touch soon!
Want to know more?
Family portraits on Nantucket Island are so much fun! I love working with couples, kids and extended families to get pictures that capture the happiness of the moment. If you love natural moments and a relaxed setting then we would love to work with you. Having grown up on Nantucket, I cherish those summer days and sun soaked evenings at the beach. I love encouraging everyone to enjoy the landscape and have plenty of fun throughout our sessions.
Much like our weddings I am happy to make a few more formal looking family photos but then it’s time to play. I love when kids let their personalities shine and families share moments of togetherness in the stunning backdrop of Nantucket Island.
Want to schedule a session?
Engagement and Proposal Sessions
We love photographing proposals! I’m always excited to work with people who want to document their whole story starting with the big question. There are many ways to capture a proposal, and we are sure to blend in so we don’t give away the surprise. After the ‘YES’ we love capturing all of the emotions that follow.
For our Engagement Sessions we reccomend visiting locations that are important to our couples, and we always plan for the best timing and light when picking our destinations. We encourage the couples to do the sessions in locations that they won’t be visiting on the wedding day, so they have photos all over the island and not in just one area. Engagement Sessions are a great way to be in front of the camera before the wedding, and as with all of our photography, the vibe is casual, fun and natural.
Ready to pop the question?
Personal Projects and Travel
After the Wedding and Portrait Season I love to spend my time photographing stories that are near and dear to my heart. Over the years I have worked with many nonprofits and humanitarian organizations all over the world. Photographing in new places and telling new stories is a source of inspiration to me, and keeps my work constantly evolving. If you have a project or story that I can help you tell then I would love to talk more. Let me know where and when you’d need my services and we’ll make it work!