Michael Ryan Ballard - Wedding Photographer Guy - Nilas Photogaphy


Portland Wedding Photographer

I'm the Wedding Photographer Guy

Wedding Photographer Guy is an Alternative, all-inclusive, professional wedding and elopement photographer dedicated to providing a laid back and authentic photography experience.

Your wedding is a time to kick back, celebrate your love, your loved ones, and party your ass off. My job... well, it's more than just a job. I'm not in it for a paycheck. I love and feel beyond fortunate for what I do. I want to be right there celebrating with you and experiencing all the laughter, adventure, tears, nervous sweats, brews chugged, cake smashed, that one friend who really likes to shake it on the dance floor... all of it, right through the viewfinder.

With every click of the shutter, a memory immortalized.

I seek clients that don't feel like clients, but rather friends. In zero way do I want to feel like some strange dude with a camera.

I strive to create a comfortable environment, in front of and around the lens. So share that sense of humor, I'm impossible to offend. Let's crack a brew and swap stories. Ask me questions, if it's wedding related, I've probably got answers. I can tie a tie and bustle a dress, I'm there to lend a hand.


I'm down for anything. If you want to bushwack 10 miles to your elopement waterfall, let's go. If you're having a pirate wedding, I hope ye know I be dressin' up wit' ye. Pop the champagne in my direction, that shot will be wicked. Whether you're dancing with fire or wandering waist-deep in the ocean, I'm ready to be right there alongside you capturing every moment of your adventure.


A few Reviews

"Michael did a wonderful job at our wedding. He spent all day getting photos of us getting ready, the wedding, the reception and all the craziness that followed. He was great at blending into the background and capturing cute moments. What I loved is that he didn’t take over the wedding and hold people up to take photos for ages. The photos turned out gorgeous and I was so impressed with the colors and quality. Beautiful."


-Bianca Philips

"We had a destination wedding near Yosemite. It was a multi day event and I was looking for a photographer who was flexible, and whose pictures fit my wedding's style. Nilas Photography was it. He was initially out of my budget, but I couldn't find any photographer who fit my criteria, and adjusted my budget to make him work -- and I'm SO GLAD I DID. Michael was amazing. He was there to capture all of the little moments that were important to me in my wedding, without being obtrusive.


My husband is notorious for being a poor subject for photos -- he never looks like himself because he gets all stiff. Michael and my husband got along so well, it was like they were old friends. It's amazing how this made the whole wedding seem more at ease.


Michael's photos capture the essence of the moments -- the emotions that bring the wedding day back to life when you look at them years later. Things like a curious child, a father looking at his newborn baby (my wedding was very kid friendly), and my exasperated husband.


I also wanted "the photo" -- you know what I'm talking about -- the photo that encapsulates all of the reasons why you hire a photographer in the first place -- the quintessential photo that says -- "THAT was my wedding" -- and Nilas gave that to me. I'll forever be grateful for that.


Take a look at his portfolio, and if you like his photos, hire this guy. I totally recommend him. My family was so impressed with his pictures, in fact, that he's photographing my brother's wedding in July!"



"We hired Michael to do our engagement photos and I'm so glad we did! He was incredibly easy to work with from the very beginning. My (now husband) and I are not picture takers so we were really nervous being in front the camera. Michael felt almost like a buddy just hanging out taking our picture; he made the entire experience very comfortable and we actually enjoyed ourselves. The turnaround time on the pictures was quick! I absolutely loved the way they turned out and we ended up using two photographs to display at our reception instead of one. I am so glad we found Michael, his prices are very affordable, he was very flexible on traveling to various locations to get the right shot, and he was a lot of fun to work with."



A few more reviews...

The eye behind the lens




I'm Michael, also known as Nilas. 


I always prefer to meet in person, but I'll start with a pretty solid overview until we can get face-to-face. Writing about myself isn't necessarily a strong suit, so I'll just jot it down as it comes out.


I'm a dad, an artist, weirdo, and wanderlust.

Though, above all else, I'm a dad. My boys are the loves of my life. I've been through far beyond my fair share of hardships, struggles, and what we may as well just call "shit" in my life. My boys are my constant, my primary passion. If it weren't for them, I'd probably just be wandering with a backpack in the woods or jumping trains to nowhere. The biggest smiles that will dig wrinkles in my face and every tear worth shedding, it all comes directly from them. I find the most profound joy from being in their life as new experiences unfold before them. We do our best to appreciate the little things and love to wander, learn, and partake in our general shenanigans.   


Photography is something that I am extremely passionate about. I'm drawn to emotion in a storytelling fashion. Whether I'm shooting a wedding, lifestyle portrait, landscape, or surrealistic art, I simply feel home as I capture moments as they unfold naturally.


I love telling stories through creative imagery, both fictional and non-fictional. The majority of my experience comes from shooting weddings/commitment ceremonies and just couples in general. Which is perfect. I love to witness love. Immortalizing memories for a couple is one of the most satisfying and rewarding feelings, and I'm very humbled that so many people have chosen me as their storyteller.


Humor is great, both censored and uncensored. Whether we're telling dad jokes, acting out, or telling tongue-in-cheek tales, I just love having a good time. 


I'm a bit of a geek, perhaps an oddball. I've always been sort of an extrovert amongst outcasts. Weird, but in a good way.


Life is too short to pass judgment, and we should never judge a book by its cover. I'm open-minded and accepting of the beliefs of others.


I'm an artist and believe in art above monetary value. If I can earn enough to make a humble living and maintain stability for my boys, I'm beyond happy. I travel cheap, I make do with what I have and I always try to smile at the little things. I have no need for extravagant things. 


I'm all about adventure and I'm not afraid of any trek. I'll travel anywhere, trail or not. I'll swim under icy waterfalls, hike under the blazing sun and bushwack the unknown. I welcome and love any adventurous challenge.

Motorcycles, pizza, brews, and tattoos. <3 

Dark surrealism and darker concepts have always been a very strong interest of mine. If I had to choose a specific subject matter to photograph for the rest of my life, hands down, I would shoot the eerie, alternative, and avant-garde. That's what sparked my love for photography in the first place. Oh, the days when DeviantArt was a thing and I spent all my hours bathing the darker art subjects. What am I talking about? Click here to check out my dark stuff.


I love the people I've met and the places my job has taken me. It really has been a dream come true. With roughly 100 weddings and countless other sessions captured, I am beyond grateful. This path has brought me so many great memories and new friends (hell, even family), I can't wait to see what and who lies ahead!

Nilas the portland wedding  Photographer

The Process & What's Included



So you're here and you're interested. Awesome!


Where do we go from here? 


On our first contact, I'll deliver my pricing sheet and answer any initial questions you might have. The basics. What comes after the first contact is far more important. If I'll be attending an event as important and sentimental as your wedding, I shouldn't just be another suit with a camera. I aim to be more than just a service provider and I seek clients that I can befriend. So let's really chat. We can get to know each other in person or over a call/video call. At this time I can fill you in on how I work as well as who I am. I hope you'll share a bit about yourselves as well.


All right, so you dig the portfolio, we get along great and you and the other half are ready to lock down the date!

What next?

So after we've had the chance to chat and we've decided on the ideal package for your needs, I'll request a 25% deposit to lock down the date. The remainder won't be due until the day of the wedding. After the deposit, I'll email you 3 forms to complete that outline the specifics of your package and give me important details about your big day. One of the forms, the wedding questionnaire, will give me just about all the information I need on the big day. Providing me with further information beyond the questionnaire is purely optional, but definitely welcome. You can leave me with just a start time and the basic information or send me detailed lists, Pinterest boards, itinerary and more. Whichever makes you comfortable!

On the big day, there is no need to stress. I've shot countless weddings of all kinds and know exactly what to do. All you need to worry about is having the time of your life. I'll be right there to capture every precious moment ( and maybe a piece of wedding cake... muahahaha! ). Candids, creative shots, group shots with family and friends...

I've got you covered.


What about after the wedding?


After the wedding, I'll get editing ASAP. I'll put some sneak peeks on my website within a few days and send out the remainder of the images within two weeks. Something I do a bit differently than other photographers is that I've removed the limitation on the number of images you will receive. I will go through every single image and edit all of the best shots. You are guaranteed a minimum of 200 images, although most couples receive between 250-500, depending on the length of the wedding, package type, and amount of activities and guests. Images come in full resolution via USB or via an online gallery.  I offer print packages, albums and more, but you are not obligated to print through me.  Once you have your digital images, you can print and/or post them anywhere you'd like. They're one-hundred-percent yours to do with as you please!


Post-delivery, I hope to stay in touch. We can chat online, watch each other's families grow and perhaps even share a few additional adventures together.

I look forward to meeting you!  





Based in Portland, Oregon, I most commonly service the Portland metropolitan region, Oregon coast, and throughout the Pacific Northwest, and throughout California, especially in and around my hometown of Tehachapi.

I am beyond willing to travel anywhere around the entire globe and often provide incentives for weddings both near my hometown and in beautiful scenic destinations. 

Engagements are typically captured within the Pacific Northwest. but I have been known to conduct sessions during my travels, so don't hesitate to inquire if you're looking to shoot elsewhere!


Packages + Booking 

To recieve current package pricing and promotions based on your wedding/elopement date, please fill out the contact form and I'll be in contact with you with further information promptly.


Don't forget to tell me about your partner, your visions for your commitment celebration, your likes and dislikes. Let's make sure I'm a great fit.