“there are two things i should tell you about myself to help solidify this endorsement. i am a perfectionist (i know a lot of people think they are but i’m truly a textbook definition of perfectionist) and i live by two mantras… (1) to always under promise and over deliver and (2) to leave it better than i found it. and i always secretly hope that those i work with and/or those that i hire to work with me… have similar philosophies.
with that being said, ryan never under promised but he did 100% over deliver! he left my wedding capturing the day better than i had remembered it. my husband and i are incredibly fortunate that because of ryan’s talents we are able to go back to that special day and relive it as if time never passed. and that’s what i wanted (and assume most brides want)… timeless photos that no matter when you go back to look at them, tomorrow, a month from now, 25 years from now… those pictures would bring you back as if it just happened.
ryan was sweet, funny, attentive, on time (if not early), calm (which is good to have on your big day) and brilliantly, brilliantly talented! he has a way of looking through those camera lenses and not just see a bride and groom but a story… a shared moment… a love between two people. if you want a photography who can beautifully illustrate a celebration of LOVE… than he is definitely the ONE.
lastly, i will say this… when it comes to ryan southen, he shouldn’t be an option… he should be a bride’s only choice.”
- jackie ruppert | bloomfield hills, michigan
“photography was the one decision my husband & i went back and forth on for awhile before deciding to go with ryan southen photography and we could not be happier that we did. we heard about ryan from a co-worker and as soon as we met him we knew we had to go with him. we were so comfortable with him and he is the ONLY person i know that can get my husband to pose & smile for a photograph. we had so much fun during our subzero engagement session and even more fun together during our wedding. we joke often that ryan was basically another part of our wedding party rather than a vendor. he stayed much longer than we asked him to and captured every little detail of our day.
many people, especially those closest to us compliment us on our photographs saying ‘they can see US in them’ or ‘they can hear our laughs’ which to me shows what an amazing photographer he is.
another GREAT thing about ryan is he know detroit! as a fellow detroit lover he was able to make our detroit wedding stand out from the rest. he NEVER takes dublicate shots that you would see during someone else’s photo sessions. everything is tailored to the couple!
after all the wedding buzz wore off we realized we had a friend in ryan. i will not stop recommending his work and often joke that i want another big event so we can have him there to capture it”
- april spinale | detroit, michigan
“working with ryan southen for our wedding photographs was a wonderful experience! my husband and i normally do not spend a lot of time in front of the camera lens, so we were apprehensive in our preparedness for posing in front of a photographer who we just met. although engagement photos were not part of our original plan, we accepted ryan’s recommendation to meet for an engagement session. this activity turned out to be the best wedding-stress-reducing decision we made! it gave us the opportunity to get to know ryan (very professional & super easy to get along with), feel comfortable in front of the camera (his natural directions calmed our nerves & made it seem effortless), and obtain a strong sense of each other’s personal styles and preferences (the photos felt like us, were well composed, and not cliche).
with so many things on our minds the day of our wedding, it was comforting knowing that we did not have to worry about our photographer. ryan and his co-photographer showed up on time and were ready to capture every moment of our special day. thousands of photos were taken during the ceremony and reception, and yet we never felt like there was a photographer in the way; ryan’s presence was pleasantly inconspicuous.
as we look back on our wedding photos, we are extremely happy with how ryan was able to capture each memorable moment, as well as details we missed amidst all of the excitement. we were able to enjoy ourselves on that day, and continue to enjoy the memories captured by ryan. we highly recommend ryan southen as a photographer – he is highly skilled, has an eye for creative & classic image compositions, and is considerate toward all that goes into preparing for your special day!!”
- jessica green | detroit, michigan
“ryan is the most creative and professional photographer! photography was a big decision for our wedding. we are from michigan and got married in jamaica, meaning we needed to find a photographer to take engagement pictures here who was willing to fly across the country for our wedding. combine that with being picky about the quality and style of photography, you can imagine the difficulty! well, ryan was our guy. he was flexible and responsive from the first inquiry – we are so happy to have had ryan as our wedding photographer!
for our engagement pictures, ryan was able to capture the love between my husband and i as well as capturing the beauty of detroit’s architecture and life. our wedding took place in jamaica and ryan’s artwork shined as he was not only able to capture our wedding but the memorable surroundings. if you’ve ever been a bride, groom, or guest in a destination wedding, you know how much time you end up spending with the photographer, and how crucial it is for the photographer to “mesh” with your family and friends. ryan fit right in, like one of the family!
finally, the actual pictures: they were INCREDIBLE! not only that, we received them within 2 weeks of returning from our trip! my husband and i were in awe to see our photograph shipment come in the mail a few weeks later with specialized packaging and presentation.
from the initial meeting in which ryan was able to grasp all of our desires to the final presentation of his photos, everything was done with such attention to detail. ryan was not only able to capture our moments but tell a story from the beginning to the end. the passion he has for photography shows in his work. i would recommend ryan southen to anyone who is looking for quality photography to capture important moments in your life. we look forward to our continued friendship with ryan.”
- valerie ziegler | montego bay, jamaica
“ryan was our photographer, both for our engagement pictures and our wedding day. it’s hard to put into words, how pleased and happy we are with all of the photos. ryan has a unique way of capturing each moment, maximizing whatever setting you are in. he literally captured each and every moment on our wedding day. we with with the ‘two’ photographer package. ryan brought his assistant, and she was spectacular as well. having two photographers, literally captured each and every angle of the wedding day, and gives you a unique perspective on the moments you want to capture forever. all that being said, ryan is fun to work with, and we laughed, smiled and just had a blast working with him. i think that is very important; to enjoy each moment and like who you are working with. ryan is easy to get along with, and he makes taking pictures a lot of fun. but at the end of the day, the product is what we all want to be perfect, and ryan’s style, and quality of work are second to none. not only that, but in my opinion he is reasonably priced, and it is well worth every penny!”
- josh + kelly sager | clarkston, michigan
“ryan was the only choice we considered when hiring a wedding photographer. i’ve been following his work for a few years and have consistently been blown away by his talent. aside from natural talent, ryan is unique in simultaneously capturing both landscapes and portraits. my husband and i have an affinity for architecture and detroit is home to many stunning structures. ryan shares the same affinity and has a keen eye for capturing lighting, perspective, and detail. i absolutely love the was he juxtaposes architectural landscapes with people and he did just that on our wedding day. our photos look natural, not posed, and convey our love, humor, quirkiness, and raw emotion against an urban landscape. i’m so thankful to have a visual reminder of our wedding day that tells our story beautifully, intimately, and artistically.
as a person, ryan is delightful to work with. he’s enthusiastic, friendly, playful, patient, and honest. he took care to make us feel comfortable and built a relationship with us leading up to our wedding day; we met on several occasions for coffee, lunch, and to scout potential locations. he was flexible, confident, and personable. i’m grateful for his professional skills and happy to know him as a person! thanks, ryan! you’re the best ”
- nicola mucci | detroit, michigan
“as we had a detroit themed wedding, we knew the vendors we hired had to embody the detroit spirit we know and love; hard working, creative, down to earch. ryan was the perfect fit for our big day. he was recommended by a friend of mine and once we saw his portfolio, we were sold. as a photography student in college, and previous 2nd photographer for weddings, i knew i was going to be picky and a little uncomfortable being in front of the camera. ryan put me at ease instantly, and we could not be happier with the gorgeous photos. i cannot wait to share our photos with our family and friends!”
- cris frendo | detroit, michigan
“ryan is a great wedding photographer for two reasons – 1) he takes exceptional pictures and 2) he is a pleasure to work with.
as to the pictures, they turned out wonderfully. our favorite pictures are the candid shots and the more “artsy” pictures. as to his candid shots, ryan always captures the mood, which makes his pictures more than “just pictures.” take for example the cake cutting pictures. many photographers will wait for you to cut the cake then come over and pose you exactly how they think you should look. this leads to pictures that look fake and are, in my opinion, quite dull. by contrast, ryan is there taking picture after picture as you cut the cake and interact with your significant other in a natural way. ryan’s method results in pictures that capture you and who you are, not just boring staged pictures. that isn’t to say that ryan doesn’t pose you and get the staged pictures also. he takes both, so you can decide which you prefer. as to his “artsy” pictures, ryan’s use of light is impeccable and his photographs are very dramatic (in a good way!). his pictures aren’t just hanging in our house because they are our wedding pictures, but also because they are beautiful pictures. in addition to the candid shots and “artsy” pictures, the staged family pictures are also very good. overall, ryan’s ability to capture the mood and take very dramatic pictures is what sets him apart from the average photographer. from his pictures, you can tell that ryan is a true artist.
in addition to the fact that ryan is an excellent photographer, ryan is a pleasure to work with. ryan is very easy going and up for anything. if you want a specific picture, ryan will make sure he gets it. ryan isn’t a photographer that lurks surreptitiously taking pictures. rather, he is involved with everyone in the wedding party and has a great time with you and your friends. it is my opinion that ryan’s ability to become part of the wedding leads to great photographs that would otherwise be missed. ryan also manages to become part of the wedding without missing any pictures. he sent us just under 1,900(!) finalized pictures and captured the entire day wonderfully. above all, your wedding photographer is someone you are going to spend a lot of time with on your wedding day. your wedding day can be stressful and people that don’t mesh well with you and your guests can be quite frustrating. ryan is NOT one of these people. he has a schedule to which he adheres to ensure that he captures the entire day, but he is flexible and works with you to get the pictures that you want. he is always there for the perfect picture, but is never demanding or in the way. best of all, ryan doesn’t take himself too seriously, and is honestly there to (in addition to taking pictures) enjoy your day with you.
in sum, i would without hesitation recommend ryan to any of my friends (or anyone for that matter). with ryan, you get wonderful pictures and a person that you enjoy having at your wedding.”
- alissa mathews | dearborn, michigan
“we were referred to ryan by a friend that had seen some of his work. after viewing some of the photos that he took, we knew we wanted to work with him. ryan brings an artistic and unique element to his work and this is something we were looking for. my wedding photos do not look like the same old wedding photos. we also did a post wedding session with ryan. this is when we did many of our more formal pictures and got to run around detroit taking pictures. ryan had some great ideas of additional places to go and get some great shots. he worked with me to get some amazing pictures that i had wanted. ryan was helpful throughout the whole process and made this as easy as possible. thanks ryan!”
- adrian trombley | detroit, michigan
“what makes ryan such a great photographer isn’t just his beautiful photos or his style, but his laid back personality and flexibility. two weeks prior to my wedding, i had a major nervous breakdown and thank goodness i could rely on him – i don’t think i would have made it through that by myself. he makes you feel at ease and encourages your personality to shine. he listens to what you want and knows how to direct without being bossy.
it seems a little silly to review his personality moreso than his photos, but remember that your photographer is going to be a part of your special day. a poor attitude or clashing personality could easily ruin such an emotional day. book ryan for your wedding – you will thank me!”
- aiman rauf | detroit, michigan
“ryan was great to work with during our wedding. he arrived on time and had everything going smoothly. he’s a very friendly person and instantly made everyone feel comfortable. he is very professional and cares about his work. this was obvious to us when he suggested we meet up prior to working together to get a feel for each other. he asked us what sort of shots we were looking for and more than delivered a great product.
during our wedding he was a great asset to us and helped us out more than you would expect from any photographer. we had paid for wedding coordinators who at vital parts of the wedding were missing, ryan jumped right in and helped out letting my wife know what was going on with the rest of the party and helped move things along. we opted out of too many posed pictures and were worried about having anything look awkward or staged. i can say that without a doubt all of our pictures look natural and capture the day perfectly.
if you’re looking for someone who can put you and your wedding party at ease in front of the camera, get all the shots you want, achieve the “look” you’re going for, and finally provide a great product then ryan is absolutely the guy you are looking for.”
- rick + alicia hetu | rochester, michigan
“ryan southen is not only an amazing photography but SO easy to work with! he’s super fun and creative and takes extraordinary photos. he likes to think outside the box and not always take the most traditional of photos. he listens to your wants and desires for your big day and does just that! as a bride, it’s hard to remember every. single. detail, but thankfully ryan did! we had some special things in our wedding like a charity table for the orphanage we are active in, my “in memory of” photo of my grandmother around my bouquet, our rings, special moments with friends and family, all the centerpiece and decor details, etc. and ryan didn’t miss a single one. we love our photos and greatly enjoyed working with ryan. he’s fun, easy going, and professional in all he does. i would recommend him to anyone!”
- erika miller | plymouth, michigan
“ryan was a no-brainer when it came to who my husband and i wanted to photograph our special day. he photographed my best friend’s wedding so we already knew he was solid gold at capturing gorgeous pictures. ryan’s pricing is a bargain when you consider he spends the entire day photographing every moment, no annoying time limits here! he is laid-back, hilarious, personable and truly an artist at his craft. having someone who truly seems invested in not only creating beautiful portraits and candid moments as well as enjoying your day is priceless. there are packages to meet all your needs. if you want to have zero anxiety about anything on yoru wedding day, ryan is the way to go! P.S. he actually stayed more in contact with me than i did him during the planning process. ”
- alina macc0nni | orion township, michigan
“of all the decisions we made for the wedding, deciding on using ryan as our photographer was pretty much the easiest & first decision we made (aside from setting a date). from the engagement photos to the wedding day, ryan made us feel extremely comfortable and was able to capture some wonderful moment between my husband and myself. needless to say, all of our photos were excellent! if we were to get married again, this is one vendor i would definitely choose all over again with no hesitation! thanks ryan for capturing so many great memories of such a special day in our lives ”
- ashley chumbley | detroit, michigan
“ryan is absolutely amazing!!! i honestly can’t say enough good things about him!!! not only is he a great guy, he is an amazing photographer. he has an eye for catching you not just looking your best but looking like you. he made my husband who hates pictures feel comfortable and even enjoy doing both the engagement and wedding sessions! he is totally reliable and professional and his eye for photography is just unparalleled! he is worth every penny!!! ryan is the type of photographer you end up friends with when everything is all said and done. i couldn’t recommend him more highly! i honestly could go on and on, if you are looking around and unsure, definitely contact him, you will be glad you did!”
- melanie depcinski | saginaw, michigan
“after a few photographers didn’t work out due to scheduling and not finding the right package, ryan was referred to us by another person in the business and we were amazed with his work, talent, professionalism, experience, and adaptability.
our rate included an engagement photo session, and he drove out to chicago for the cost of gas, and ALL DAY photography and immediate digital rights to all of his hand edited images!!
please consider ryan for your photographer, you will not be disappointed!
- lauren jeske | detroit, michigan
“ryan is simply the best. he made the whole process from engagement pictures to the last hour of the reception effortless. my husband is a bit camera shy and self-concscious and ryan put him at ease. i highly recommend ryan to anyone, and hope we can continue to work with him through the years!”
- amanda woods | birmingham, michigan
“when i was looking for a photographer for our wedding i could picture the style i wanted but didn’t know of anyone through word of mouth. i found ryan southen photography on the knot and i was so glad that i did! he does excellent work and has a unique style. he was great at putting me at ease during a stressful time the day of our wedding. we loved the end result of our wedding photos and engagement photos too! even down to the packaging the pictures were sent in. i highly recommend him. he is a true artist, easy to work with, and is reasonably priced for the style and high quality.”
- kelly pappas | plymouth, michigan
“our wedding photos were something that i always knew were going to be near and dear to our heart. i didn’t care about many of the other services that i was going to pay that much attention about… except photography.
ryan southen has an amazing way of capturing your day, and doing it in such a nice and laid back way, that you never even notice he’s there. we had a few demands that we ‘had to have’ for our wedding… and he was able to pull these photos off and capture exactly just what we wanted.
every time i go through our photos, its like telling the story of that day, and replaying it back over and over again.
if i was ever to go back and do this over, i would have no problem hiring ryan again. the product he delivers, the style of photography, and just how he is able to present it to you.
my summary? simply amazing.”
-ken jacoby | detroit, michigan
“we couldn’t be more proud of the collection of memories ryan has magnificently captured for us. from the first meeting, ryan’s cool, calm and collected demeanor set him a part. ryan has an amazing gift to make his clients feel totally at ease as he quietly works his magic. we were countlessly surprised by how an everyday landscape could transform into such unique, emotionally connected photos. but most importantly, we were impressed by his “do anything” willingness – something we didn’t find with many of the other photographers in town. we would personally recommend ryan to anyone – and you can ask him – but I think we hold the recordfor keeping him on his feet the longest. if you’re willing to put your trust in one person on your wedding day, ryan will deliver.”
- kim luebke | dearborn, michigan
“my experience with ryan was amazing.
as a bride, there are so many details to plan, organize, micromanage… ryan alleviated all my concerns as soon we met. a simple meeting to meet and discuss my vision of our day and i was set at ease. ryan and his team did a fabulous job capturing the beauty and emotions of all the pre-wedding functions, wedding and reception. he even took the extra effort to scout our wedding location beforehand to determine the best locations for our photos. ryan’s dedication to detail & expertise showed all of this in our photos. we will be able to relive our entire wedding day for years to come!
i would highly recommend ryan to anyone!”
- dayna franklin | oxford, michigan
“ryan was fabulous! he was so great to work with and put myself and the groom at ease. he is such a good value considering how much work he does and he doesn’t charge by the hour. i would definitely suggest him to anyone looking for a photographer!”
- soo karber | detroit, michigan
“ryan was exceptional from start to finish! he is professional, creative, and one of the most passionate photographers i have met, and it shows in the quality of his work – the poses, angles, editing, and quality were all wonderful.. looking at the photos for the first time all my husband and i could think about was how ryan was able to capture the happiness and joy that we felt on our wedding day. ryan is not only a great photographer but he is a really awesome guy and genuinely cares about the couple he is working for. i say this because, with deciding to have a short engagement we only had about three months to plan our wedding and let me tell you.. ryan made everything so easy and stress free for us. even with me calling him having a mini nervous breakdown he was nothing but understanding, calm, and had a reassuring “how can i help/make it better” attitude. seriously, we could not be happier. your search ends here for a photographer!!!”
- brittany holguin | oxford, michigan
“there are truly not enough wonderful things to say about ryan, both as a professional and as a person. he is extraordinarily talented with a magnificent eye for architectural detail, and for the well of human emotions (and facial expressions!) that are an inherently beautiful part of weddings. his creativity, passion and expertise are evident in each and every one of the photos he took for us during our engagement shoot and wedding. what’s more, unlike some vendors, he took the time to listen patiently and attentively to our vision for both shoots so that he could bring that vision to life. it was a pleasure to spend time in ryan’s company and have him be a part of our wedding. we really could not have asked for more in a photographer. although we don’t plan on getting married again … ever, we do look forward to working with ryan again whenever possible. we enthusiastically and without any reservation would recommend him to any bride (and bridegroom) far and wide!”
- the mitchells | detroit, michigan
“working with ryan was more than a pleasure! his ideas and directions were both warm and comforting. i’d recommend Ryan for any moment you want captured. with a creative eye like his, behind lenses so sharp, you’re sure to preserve every memorable moment in a beautiful still portrait.”
- emma henson | los angeles, california
“ryan captured our big day so beautifully i can’t stop looking at the pictures. they are professional, creative, inspiring, gorgeous shots that depicted everything from the smallest detail to the biggest moments. our first kiss is like a flip book that brings me back to that moment so completely and always makes me smile. i feel so lucky that i was able to have him as my photographer and still believe it was the 2nd best wedding-related decision i made (beat out only slightly by my choice in groom!). with ryan as your photography you are guaranteed a worry-free day and amazing pictures.”
- liz nienhuis | petoskey, michigan
“ryan southen photography is simply wonderful. the flow of a wedding is unpredictable and it’s hard to determine what unforgettable moments will occur. but every time those moments occurred, ryan was there. as we look through our wedding portraits our hearts ignite with the love we felt that day. we are forever grateful to you and your team. thank you.”
- molly + tom weaver | mayville, michigan
“during the long search for a wedding photographer, every photographer started looking the same and we knew we couldn’t have a traditional photographer to capture our nontraditional wedding. our wedding was going to be modern, interesting, different, and epic. naturally, we needed a photographer to match our style, and well ryan is just that. we loved that he was young, dedicated to his work, and committed to us. he did a great job adapting to the environment and instinctively was able to capture who and what was important to us. the pictures are simply breathtaking and I think they attest to ryan’s artistic talents.”
- fatima foflonker | detroit, michigan
“ryan is a photographer that cares deeply about his clients. it is obvious from the first time you meet him that ryan is determined to tell the unique story of each couple that he works with. we appreciated ryan’s ability to be flexible and to overproduce on everything that he promised us. our pictures tell the story of our day and convey the emotion of our experience. we are extremely happy with ryan’s work and have already recommended him to our friends!”
- lisa anga | birmingham, michigan
“ryan is hands down one of the best photographers I have ever seen. not only is he professional and flexible, he produces absolutely breathtaking photographs. my husband and I could not be happier with our engagement and wedding pictures! I cried when I saw them. he is a wonderful person in general and I cannot wait for him to shoot sessions for us in the years to come.”
- katelyn sands | rochester, michigan
“from the moment we viewed his website, we knew we wanted ryan to photograph our july wedding last year (2009). his photographs transcend those of traditional wedding photos and function as works of art in their own right. it is his creativity and quite obvious natural talent for finding subtle moments that set his work apart from that of others. furthermore, ryan was flexible and willing to take our wishes into consideration. in fact, he welcomed all our suggestions throughout the entire process. we definitely recommend ryan southen photography to all our friends and family!”
- julie rains | rochester, michigan
“my husband had been following ryan’s art photography for years, so when we got engaged we knew we wanted ryan to shoot our wedding. he had exactly the artistic vision we were looking for and we couldn’t have been more excited to work with him. not only is ryan incredibly talented, but he is patient, accommodating and a joy to have around you on your wedding day. he is able to capture moments on your special day that will take your breath away and leave you speechless. we would definitely recommend ryan to anyone who wants their wedding day documented in not only beautiful photos, but by a true artist.”
- amanda + josh goldstein | plymouth, michigan
“ryan was an excellent photographer. he made every effort to understand what we were looking for and was very well prepared for the wedding day. we gave him little direction, except that we wanted less formal and more photojournalistic style shots, and he came through with fantastic results. not only is he a talented photographer, as you can see from his portfolio, but he is also a great person to work with. i would highly recommend him to anyone looking for more than just your average photographer.”
- ted whitehead | ann arbor, michigan
“we were truly excited to have ryan as our wedding photographer after being very impressed with his portfolio at our initial meeting. ryan was very professional and well prepared, having researched each shooting location prior to the wedding. we were drawn to his talent because of his photo journalistic approach and attention to detail. despite the rain and clouds, ryan was able to tell our story and capture countless beautiful, and sacred moments that will last a lifetime. we absolutely love our photo’s and are continuously asked who shot our wedding. we have highly recommended ryan to many people and continue to sing his praises!”
- caitlin + steve card | grosse pointe, michigan
“hiring ryan southen to shoot our wedding was on of the best decisions we made in planning our wedding. we were impressed that ryan took the time to scout sites for our engagement session, and that he spent the day before planning the shoot and looking over our ceremony and reception venues. he was very personable and professional, which really put us at ease. despite a number of problems with other vendors, ryan southen made everything look great! a perfect ’10′ for our wonderful 10/10/10!
a heartfelt thanks!
-joseph and nancy hoffman | leesburg, virginia