Meet Jackie

Welcome to the Ardensea Blog! I’m Jackie Watson, owner and wedding photographer of my south Florida based studio. I hope you find this space a great resource to explore my work, find inspiration, and see if we’re the perfect fit for your own special day.

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Is having a Second Wedding Photographer Worth It?

Why having a second photographer on your big day can make all the difference.

Sparkler Exit Alternative Ideas

Photo-friendly ways to have a wedding send off without sparklers.

Common Regrets After Choosing The Wrong Wedding Photographer

Real couples share their post-wedding photography regrets.

5 Reasons To Do A First Look

Should you have a first look on your wedding day? Disclaimer: YES you should, but let me tell you why.

Wedding Day Tips for Florida Brides

It’s become an essential part of my client experience to educate my brides on what works and what does not work for beach weddings in Florida. And now, I am sharing the knowledge!

Planning Your Wedding Day Photography Timeline

Here’s a sample of our wedding photography timeline we suggest to all our Ardensea brides and grooms!

Making Bride & Groom Portraits a Priority on Your Wedding Day

Running out of time is the biggest reason why couples skip over the bride and groom portraits, so it’s important to plan for at least 30-minutes to an hour for newlyweds to step away and capture wedding day pictures.

Best Detail Shots for Your Wedding Day

When it comes to planning out your wedding photography, consider the little details that have a surprisingly big impact. See which shots are absolute must-haves on your wedding day.

Downtown Tampa Catholic Wedding

Pia and Andrew


A JW Marriott in downtown Tampa wedding celebration of love, elegance, and timeless beauty.

Pia and Andrew’s love story is one of serendipity and connection. Pia and Andrew first met at a mutual friend’s dinner party in Chicago. Both initially reluctant to attend, they were pleasantly surprised by the spark they felt upon meeting. Over shared laughter and deep conversations that night, they discovered a mutual love for travel, fine dining, and art. This initial meeting blossomed into a whirlwind romance that took them from exploring the vibrant streets of Istanbul to savoring quiet moments in cozy Chicago cafes.

After two years of creating beautiful memories together, Andrew proposed to Pia during a sunset walk along the Seine in Paris. It was a moment straight out of a romance novel, with the Eiffel Tower shimmering in the background as Andrew got down on one knee. Overwhelmed with joy, Pia said yes, and the couple began planning their dream wedding shortly after.

The Wedding Venue: JW Marriott Tampa

For their wedding, Pia and Andrew chose the JW Marriott in downtown Tampa. Known for its luxury and elegance, the JW Marriott provided the perfect backdrop for their timeless celebration. The venue’s grand Ybor ballroom, with its spacious and sophisticated ambiance, was ideal for their 140 guests. Downtown Tampa’s vibrant and picturesque setting added to the charm of their special day, offering numerous scenic spots for memorable wedding photos.

Downtown Tampa: A Wedding Destination

Downtown Tampa is a gem for wedding celebrations. With its blend of urban sophistication and waterfront beauty, it offers a variety of venues that cater to different wedding styles. The JW Marriott, located in the heart of downtown, is particularly popular for those seeking a luxurious and spacious setting. Its grand ballrooms, exquisite decor, and top-notch service make it a sought-after venue for couples looking to create an unforgettable wedding experience.

In addition to its beautiful venues, downtown Tampa boasts numerous attractions and amenities for wedding guests. From fine dining restaurants and trendy bars to cultural attractions like the Tampa Museum of Art, there’s plenty to see and do. The Riverwalk, a scenic waterfront pathway, offers a perfect backdrop for pre-wedding photos and leisurely strolls. For those seeking a bit of adventure, boat tours and water activities provide a unique way to experience the city.

Wedding Theme and Color Palette

Pia and Andrew envisioned their wedding as a classic, elegant, and timeless affair. They chose a black-tie theme, with a color palette featuring ivory and champagne. The light, airy tones complemented the sophisticated ambiance of the JW Marriott’s Ybor ballroom, creating a serene and ethereal atmosphere. The decor was simple yet luxurious, with ivory linens, champagne-colored accents, and lush floral arrangements by 2birds Events enhancing the beauty of the space.

Wedding Day Details

The wedding day began with Pia and her bridesmaids getting ready in a suite at the JW Marriott. Hair and makeup were expertly done by Femme Akoi, ensuring that Pia looked radiant as she prepared to walk down the aisle. The bridesmaids wore dresses in complementary shades of ivory and champagne, adding to the cohesive and elegant look of the bridal party. Meanwhile, Andrew and his groomsmen got ready in a separate suite, donning classic black tuxedos from Nordstrom.

The ceremony took place at St. Lawrence Catholic Church, a beautiful and historic venue that provided a reverent and intimate setting for Pia and Andrew’s nuptials. The church’s grand architecture and elegant decor set the stage for a touching and traditional Catholic ceremony. One of the highlights was the wedding lazo tradition, where Pia’s grandparents placed a lazo over the couple after their vows, symbolizing their unity and everlasting love.

Capturing the Moments

As a luxury wedding photographer, capturing the essence of Pia and Andrew’s day was a true delight. The timeless beauty of the JW Marriott and the historic charm of St. Lawrence Catholic Church provided stunning backdrops for both posed portraits and candid shots. From the emotional first look to the joyous moments during the ceremony, every detail was meticulously captured to create a lasting memory of their special day.

Reception at the JW Marriott’s Ybor Ballroom

Following the ceremony, guests were transported back to the JW Marriott for the reception in the Ybor ballroom. The ballroom, with its high ceilings and elegant decor, was transformed into a romantic and ethereal setting. Tables were adorned with ivory linens, champagne-colored accents, and lush floral centerpieces, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere.

Pia and Andrew’s reception was filled with heartfelt moments and lively celebrations. Their first dance, choreographed to “Next to Me” by Rufus du Sol, was a highlight of the evening, showcasing their love and connection. Guests enjoyed a seated dinner, followed by toasts, a father-daughter dance, and a mother-son dance. One of the special moments was a Peruvian “huayno” dance performance by Pia’s aunt and uncle, which added a personal and cultural touch to the celebration.

The couple also incorporated the vibrant tradition of Hora Loca, energizing the guests and keeping the dance floor packed. The evening was capped off with a beautiful cake by MoniCakes and plenty of dancing, with music provided by VB Music’s Oscar Larios. Throughout the reception, the bride made a stunning outfit change into a dress by Retro Fete, perfectly capturing the timeless and elegant theme of the wedding.

The Perfect Match for Our Photography Style

Pia and Andrew’s wedding was a perfect match for our classic, elegant, and slightly documentary-style photography. The beautiful settings, the thoughtful details, and the genuine emotions of the day allowed us to capture a series of stunning images that tell the story of their love. The elegant decor and timeless moments were a dream to photograph, and we are honored to have been a part of their special day.


Pia and Andrew’s wedding at the JW Marriott in downtown Tampa was a celebration of love, elegance, and timeless beauty. If you’re planning a wedding and are drawn to the idea of a luxurious ballroom setting in a vibrant urban location, the JW Marriott in downtown Tampa is an excellent choice. With its grand spaces, top-notch service, and beautiful surroundings, it offers everything you need to create an unforgettable wedding experience.

If you’re looking for a photographer who can capture the elegance and timeless beauty of your special day, we would love to hear from you. Our style is all about highlighting the genuine moments and creating images that you will cherish for a lifetime. Reach out to us today to discuss how we can capture the magic of your wedding day.


Photo/Video: @ardensea

Planning: @confettieventstampa

Ceremony: @stlawrence_tampa

Reception: @jwmarriotttampa

Gown Designer: @ritavinieris

Gown Boutique: @isabelbridal

Hair/Makeup: @femmeakoi

Florals: @2birdsevents

Rentals: @achairaffair


Transportation: @AmbassadorLimousines

AV: @insignia_events

Cake: @MoniCakes

May 21, 2024

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florida wedding photographer ardensea

Hello, from the Ardensea Blog! I'm Jackie Watson, owner and luxury fine-art wedding photographer based in beautiful South Florida. I hope you find this space a great resource to find all the resources you need to plan the perfect wedding, view my work, and see if we're the perfect fit for your own special day.