Real Couples // A Home-Grown Wedding: Erik + Ryan

In 2014, Erik officiated the first legal same-sex ceremony in Wisconsin. The next day, he and his partner Ryan came back to the courthouse to get legally married themselves. It took almost a year for all of the legal and political dust to settle when the Supreme Court finally weighed in making same-sex weddings the law of the land. After this momentous ruling, Erik and Ryan decided they would like for their family and friends to to take part in their marriage as well. Their ceremony was a simple and classy affair focused on their family and friends.

They started the day at the farmers market picking out the flowers for the wedding party and table decorations. Next they hit up their favorite coffee shop with some dear friends before heading to the church to get ready. Their officiant was a good friend and the whole event had a family reunion feel to it.  Rather than a cocktail hour, Ryan and Erik opted to host a mini-carnival for all of the kids present. It was a total blast with tickets prizes, popcorn, and laughter in abundance. 

At the center of the entire day was the incredible, deep love that Erik and Ryan have for each other. The day felt truly unique because everyone there — even the officiant, the caterer, and the photographer — were personal friends of the couple. The abundance of life and laughter that flow from their relationship was mirrored by the genuine warmth of all in attendance. 

Photos and Words by Brandon Brown of Roost Photography


Brandon is a photographer based in MKE and Chicago. He started Roost Photography in 2014 to capture love, laughter, and the moments that matter. Brandon photographs weddings, portraits, seniors, parties, families, styled shoots, landscapes, architecture, industrial projected and corporate events.