January 13, 2020

Meet Michaela & Tim

We are Michaela and Tim (affectionately known to some as Mak & Timmy) and we met working at a wine bar, fell in love attending a wedding, and together, we believe in making an impact on your life. Why? Because we never believed in marriage until we met each other––it has changed us. We know that finding your person is not an easy task.

Furthermore, our wedding made us realize how important it is to have our favorite humans, our village, surrounding us as we made a leap of faith in each other, for everyone to see.  

Here’s the thing–WE GET IT. 

We’ve lived it, seen it, calmed it. We have taken a genuine interest in helping so many couples breathe through those last-minute jitters, wedding debacles, essentially all the trials and tribulations of what it means to get married. Wedding celebrations create a beautiful rainbow of raw emotion, and we are addicted to this gorgeous and chaotic arc. Most of all, our greatest gift to you is capturing it all on camera.

We have seen it all, from mountaintops to cathedrals to beachsides, Elvis officiants and City Hall ceremonies. It’s all a big deal––we take your story seriously. 

We believe in your love, and we believe you deserve to have the best day ever. And over the years we have been in business together, we have found that we are pretty fantastic at making that happen (Consider our own horns tooted).

Qualifications on Paper

We learned our photographic craft both in university and, more importantly, through mentorships with some of the most talented wedding photographers in the industry.

We work in both film and digital formats. Film is our favorite medium, and digital gives us the security of having everything backed-up, twice, with another backup on another card, and our external drive, etc. Yes––we are neurotic about protecting every single moment of your day. 

We have degrees in art and business with a focus in hospitality. Ask Michaela about the first wedding she “photographed” at age 14, and Tim about documenting NYC as a teenager.

Michaela Joy Photography is honored to have received national and international recognition, as well as earning awards from our peers in WPPI, Rangefinder, The Knot, Junebug Weddings, and many others.

Tim – As Told By Michaela

A common phrase in our family is, “oh yeah, Tim is Michaela’s unicorn”. After going through relationship woes and generally trying to put my life back together, I was told, “if you want to manifest something – write it down.”

So I did. I wrote down a person that I did NOT believe to exist. Turns out that person does exist––and it’s Timothy Gerald O’Shea. 

He’s as tall as he is kind, a crystal blue-eyed romantic, and as patient as any human could ask of another human. What hooked me – his sarcastic AF sense of humor. His inborn Irish heritage naturally lends him his dry wit and genuine charm. 

That’s right, Tim is Irish born, but he has an east coast accent (swoon). He was cut from that Connecticut intellectual cloth, and raised with values for the arts, and the finer things that every good New Yorker should be reared with… like wine, bagels, and pizza. In that order. Oh, and baseball. DON’T FORGET ABOUT BASEBALL. 

First and foremost, you definitely want him on your trivia team. He’s been trying out for Jeopardy and one of these times he’s going to make it, dammit. Also, don’t play fantasy football against him. He WILL win your money. 

There’s never a week that goes by where he doesn’t get a text message from someone asking for a wine pairing. His sommelier knowledge is far beyond passing all those exams. He truly has an understanding of other people’s palettes. Which is most likely why he is excellent at capturing portraits, he gets you, and he gets you quickly by asking you the right questions. 

A personal favorite moment at our weddings is when a groom or one of the bridal party will say, “Hey, your husband is awesome, hilarious, super-fun, the best, so easy to be around, kept us chill, made us excited, tall etc, etc.” I grin. 

Tim is obviously artistic, and also a true musician. He went to school for music composition and won all sorts of awards in the marching band playing the trombone. Before you say “nerd alert,” let it be known that he evolved his talents to percussion. That means he’s a drummer––more like “babe alert,” am I right?

He loves everything from jazz/blues to 80s & hip hop, pretends to also love my dream pop, and his favorite metal (black metal). Tool just released a new album for the first time in a billion years. Guess how many times he listened to it the first day it was released? Oh, and we go to the symphony a lot, let’s say our musical appreciation is well-rounded. His karaoke game? ON POINT. 

He’s definitely a night owl and loves a fancy, I-spent-way-too-much-money-on-that coffee and a classic donut. He’s forever seeking that NYC slice… in California. Always positive that it’s going to be amazing pizza and forever disappointed. Because we live in California we don’t live in New York City. This adorable trait proves his eternal optimism, and I love him for that the most. 

Did I mention he is also THE BEST CHEF. Absorbed from years in the restaurant industry, the man makes great food. I am so spoiled. Deep down, I am afraid there will be a time in the future that I forgot how to make toast.

He is also really amazing at surprises and throwing surprise parties. Hell, he managed to propose to me while we were snowboarding, on a mountain top, on his birthday (Valentine’s Day), and I was shocked. 

Ultimately, my favorite thing about Timmy is that he makes me want to be a better person. He allows me, you, and our friends, to be who we are, and to be our best selves.

Michaela – As Told By Tim

When you marry someone obsessed with cameras, horses, wine, and travel, you are in for quite a treat. I always did my best to flirt with her whenever I had the chance, and in 2011 she finally went out on a date with me.

Backing up a little bit, Michaela and I became friends while we were working together. Neither one of us could completely focus on our task at hand when we shared the office though. We always ended up talking about our dreams; living on a winery in Bordeaux, traveling the world with a Leica 35mm around our necks, owning a couple of Great Danes (or something smaller and easier to clean up after).

Sometimes we would make the tongue-in-cheek exclamation, “If we are both 40 and single, we should just make it happen. I’ll meet you in France!” In hindsight, we were subconsciously setting the foundation for a REAL life together. 

It turns out that these dreams we have ARE achievable, and she inspires me to make them happen! She returns the favor tenfold, listens to my goals and my dreams, and helps us lay out the plans to achieve them. Her excitement, enthusiasm, and willingness to take the next adventure are so attractive to me. It’s an energy that she carries around with her everywhere she goes. 

Oh, and her laugh is contagious. I promised that I would make her laugh every single day, and although it can be hard on some days, she has come through for me 3,032 days straight and counting. If it truly is the secret to longevity, Michaela will live to be 120!

Her taste in music, food, and culture is ever-expanding. That sounds pretentious, so what I mean here is that she loves Star Wars, mezcal, cured meat, and Radiohead. But it also means that she loves Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Côte-Rôtie, shakshuka, and Camille Saint-Saens. I’m the luckiest man alive!

Trust. This is a word that should only mean one thing, and should not have a barometer. I knew I had met the woman of my dreams when that came into focus. I trust Michaela with all of my being.

She allows me to be vulnerable. She keeps her promises, she loves me every single day, she strives for the best for both of us. Working together on a marriage and a small business simultaneously is an enjoyable challenge, and I could not be happier that I get to embrace that challenge with this amazing soul. Michaela’s friends know that she is the rock that they can depend on. I learn from her daily, and now I bring her compassion and empathy into my relationships as well.   

What impresses me most when we work together is her ability to instantly form a bond with the client, whether it is our client or the client of another photographer we are working with. Her warmth and understanding immediately translate to the bride, or the groom, or maybe the panicking Maid-of-Honor, calming their nerves and getting them focused on what’s most important that day: the love for their partner.

So, I guess I’m saying that you have come to the right place––and your wedding is in great hands.

Thank you to our fellow creatives!

Photography  // The Ganeys // @theganeys

Hair & MUA // Carrie Aldous // @carriealdous

Florals // Rust & Flourish // @rustandflourish

Her Style // Rent the Runway // Anthropologie

His Style // Hugo Boss // @boss

Shoes // Ally Shoes // @allyshoes

Bow // La Tavola Linen // @latavolalinen

Film & Scans // Kodak Professional // Richard Photo Lab

Couple & Styling // Michaela Joy Photography // @michaelajoyphotography

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