Vanessa is just as beautiful inside as out. She is soft spoken and elegant in the way she presents herself. She has a heart of gold which was so evident in the way her friends helped and fawned over her during her session. Mom was there too as proud as a mother should be during such an exciting time. We went all over the gardens. Even though this was taken in March before the grass had even come in we were able to find some great locations so she could still have that beautiful environmental portrait most brides love. And what a dress! I loved how the train laid. No matter what we did it was so flattering. It was a great bridal session and Vanessa did GREAT!!! Enjoy!
Welcome to the Blog
I hope to show you a little bit of everything. Of course mostly awesome images. As a photographer I love to browse through great looking images too. But I hope to add some tips for those of you who are getting married, just had a baby or just want to become a little better photographer yourself. But I hope what comes through is my passion and love for photography and my clients. Please become a member, get the RSS feed or just bookmark us to check back and see what we are up to! OH and WE LOVE COMMENTS AND QUESTIONS!! :)
Trash the Dress is a growing trend in the Wedding photography industry, but what exactly is Trash the Dress. First of all, Trash the Dress should be called Celebrate the Dress (and so this is what I’m calling it!). It is a session where the bride can break loose and take all those wonderfully adventurous photos that they could not take during their Bridal Shoot in fear of getting their wedding dress dirty. Celebrate the Dress is a separate photo shoot where you, as the bride in her gorgeous dress, can sit on the rocks by a waterfall or frolic in the flowers! It’s a moment where you can CELEBRATE how BEAUTIFUL you look in your dress! The reason this shoot was nicknamed trash the dress was because some brides wanted to be adventurous! They wanted to go to the beach and lay on the sand, play in the waves, or in some cases that I’ve heard of throw paint!
These shoots do not have to be just the bride! Mr. and Mrs. Shoot transforms the Celebrate the Dress shoot into cute after wedding photos of the bride and the groom all dress up in great scenery like The Duke Gardens or around town. These pictures often become my favorite because the Bride and the Groom get to be together and they are relaxed because the stresses that come with their wedding are long gone! These photos can always be added to the wedding album, used as portraits to be framed around your house, used as the image on thank you cards, or even as your holiday card.
Don’t let the nickname fool you! This is a photo-shoot dedicated to celebrating your dress and your wedding! Be sure to pin the photos and ideas you like! If you want to hear more from us, add us on Facebook here or google + here.
I wanted to introduce Liz, one of our lead photographers. Liz is so much fun, talented and absolutely LOVES her job. She takes any opportunity to shoot a wedding whether for herself or as a 2nd shooter. She has shot probably close to 100 weddings. She just loves weddings. Like me she can’t wait to get home and look at her images. I am thrilled to announce her as Lead Photographer with over 3 years of experience. We have her portfolio on line and will be posting her bio soon. But I think when you see her work and meet her you will have no doubts that she is the one you will want to photograph your wedding. She not only has the skill (critical asset) and the talent she knows how to make it fun and enjoy every moment. Enjoy her beautiful portfolio and feel free to set up a consult to meet with her. Just email us at email@example.com.
One of the great benefits of hiring a photographer is getting to have a professionally done wedding album! All you have to do as the bride is choose what pictures you want in the album. The purpose of a wedding album is to tell the story of your wedding.
All the bride has to do is choose their favorite pictures to go into the album and pick between an assortment of albums you want! But what is the purpose of a wedding album? A wedding album is the picture book of your wedding. This is a keepsake not only for you but will be passed down to your children and grandchildren. I still have my mother’s wedding album and I treasure it immensely. Especially since she and my father both died young and are no longer with me. I design each wedding album individually and the albums come from all over the world including the US, Italy, and even Australia. I have very traditional, very modern and some in between so I can accommodate any bride’s specific style.
When designing a wedding album, I try to correlate images and arrange them so that with every flip of the page you are traveling further into the day of your wedding. Be sure to check out the wedding album pages below! If you love them, be sure to use them as inspiration when choosing from your wedding photos! For you Facebook addicts (like me) you can add my Facebook page by clicking here and share the images with your friends. For you Pinterest addicts, be sure to pin the pages you LOVE so that you can have them as inspiration forever!
Do you have a dog, cat, or even a bunny?! Are you getting married?! Have you thought about including your beloved friend in the ceremony? This new trend has been catching fire on Pinterest and Google +. Because of this, I decided to give you the pros and cons of having your cute pets in your wedding.
We have had 3 weddings with we have shot with furry friends, two from my lead photographer’s weddings and one I shot in which the bride and groom had their dog walk down the aisle with them. It was SOOO cute and she was extremely well behaved!! That is not a ton of pet weddings considering we have literally shot hundreds of weddings… As for other pets, I have never seen a bunny rabbit or a cat in a wedding but it would be interesting. However, I have shot several bridal and engagement portraits where my brides bring their doggies and puppies along.
1)Having your dog in your wedding is cute!
2)You get to share your special day with the animals you love!
1)If you do not have extremely well behaved animals, they may not form schedule.
Dogs need to be potty trained, good with people, and commotion. When some animals are surrounded by a lot of strange people and things, they can become scared and/or aggressive. This will make them more of a liability. You can fix this though by hiring a dog walker or sitter and having them chaperone your loved one during the wedding or even take them home after the ceremony.
2)Cats and bunnies do not listen.
I have never seen a cat in a wedding ceremony for the exception of a Fancy Paws commercial on TV. I honestly would not advise having your cat in your ceremony because cats are harder to control and they love to explore. So if your cat escapes, they may be hard to find. Bunnies have the same issues.
3)Most Churches and venues don’t allow pets.
If you do have your pet in the ceremony, be sure to ask if your venue will allow pets. Most churches do not allow pets and have specific rules when it comes to weddings. At the one wedding I’ve shot with the dog, the ceremony was at the bride’s sister’s house.
Another way you can involve your cute pet in your wedding is by having your bridal portraits with them. If you don’t think your pup can withstand the long crowded wedding, and then have him in your portraits! Then you can have one of these photos put in your wedding album or even framed for your house. This way, your lovely pet is still a part of your special day!
Be sure to leave a comment on whether you would have your pets in your ceremony? Why or why not? We love to hear your feedback!
But REMEMBER, this is your wedding! Be unique; don’t worry what everyone else thinks! This is your day! And most of all HAVE FUN!
So your boyfriend just proposed and now you’re engaged! Now what? One of every girl’s dreams is to plan their wedding and guess what?! YOU MADE IT! You get to go dress shopping, cake tasting, and put your decorating designing skills to the test! But have you thought about your invitations yet?
Every bride wants their wedding to be perfectly unique and we want that too so we wrote a blog, just for you! Not only have I photographed tons of weddings, I’ve been a guest at several too! One of the most common invitations I have seen has been the monogrammed initials of the couple with a “Hope to see you there message.” These invites are not only beautiful; they are classic. I have also had a bride who used their engagement portraits as invitations for their rehearsal dinner. I have always thought this was such a cute idea! Not only do you have an excuse to go out and take pictures with your future hubby, but you also have a unique one-of-a-kind invitation. Another benefit to this is that your guests can hang these invites on their fridge and the photo will help the invite stand out so it does not blend in with the other schedules and etc on the fridge.
My favorite part of engagement shoots and using those photos as invites or save the dates is that they open up a whole new world of creative options for your shoot! You can now aim some of your photos towards the goal of inviting your guests. For example, you and your hubby can hand-make shirts with a cute message or even just the date! I have also seen couples bring a chalkboard and write not only cute messages to each other through the pictures but to their guests too!
Just remember that planning your wedding is supposed to be as fun if not more fun than the wedding itself! Take some time to be creative and let your personality as a couple shine through!
Be sure to check out our blog on what to wear for your engagement shoot!
DON’T FORGET! Thank you letters!
We know that you are going to look at your gorgeous wedding pictures and want to put them everywhere so we have an idea for you! Why not turn your wedding portrait pictures into thank you cards? That way all of your lovely guests will have one photo of the new happily married couple! It is normal in these cases to have a very simple thank you as a subtitle to the photo. For example in some of the photos below it says “Thank you for sharing our special memories.” This leaves you the inside to write whatever genuine thank you, you want.
Need more tips? Check out our blog on WEDDING CAKES!
After doing weddings for 10 years I have definitely learned the do’s and don’ts to keeping the dress clean during a bridal portrait. I was prompted to write this blog after doing a bridal portrait recently only shortly after it had rained and was able to make sure not a spot got on the dress during the shoot. A point which has proved my opinion that shooting outdoors is much safer for the dress than shooting indoors.
The first thing that will shock most of you is that it is actually easier to keep you clean outside versus doing an indoor portrait. There are all types of hazards that come with indoor shooting rather than shooting in a garden. The first is small doorways. They seem very innocent but dirt hides in those cracks and here you come through with a dress that let’s face it is larger than the doorway itself. This point leads me to the floors. I love shooting in old homes with the beautiful staircases and gorgeous doors but when a house has been around for 80+ years it is pretty hard to get those floors really clean. Rather than shooting in these homes (with the exception of an always needed rain plan if you aren’t able to re-schedule) I prefer going downtown and shooting in those amazing old gates and arbors of the old historic government buildings which are so amazing and leave PLENTY of room to spread that dress out. But before I move on to how to keep your dress clean outdoors let me provide the first caution. Whether inside or out you will want to get dressed at the location you are shooting. There is nothing that can get a dress dirty faster than smashing that huge train into a tiny car. You never wash the cracks of your car between the door and the frame and trying to pull that dress in that tiny spot (or even a little larger SUV) is just an accident waiting to happen.
So if we shoot outside how on earth do you keep your dress clean?
#1 Putting on the dress:
Your first guess would be to get dressed in the bathroom but I actually do not recommend this for several reasons. First we have those small doorways I talked about earlier but even worse could be puddling water on the floors or counter tops that can cause water stains. So instead I recommend a sheet laid on the ground to stand on while putting on the dress. Then a 2nd sheet for your photographer and friend or mother to hold around you while you get dressed. Keep in mind you aren’t getting ‘naked’ while dressing. I always recommend a button down shirt and jogging shorts that slip easily off after you have on the dress. So with your shorts and shirt unbuttoned but still on and closed slowly step in to the dress without shoes. The photographer and your mom or one of your maids can hold the other sheet around you just in case maybe the shirt opens just a little or really more to make you feel a little more comfortable. Using the car as a shield is also easily used. Once in the dress have your friend hold the dress up while you slip off the shirt. And then a REALLY good friend or family member to dive under there and get those shorts! Now put on your sneakers. Yes, sneakers. I take my brides all through the gardens and not only do I not want to ruin her shoes, I don’t want her twist her ankle or be uncomfortable. For most shots you never see your shoes unless you have a an uncharacteristically short dress. We do bring the shoes with us for any sitting shots that we may see the shoes so we can put them on temporarily for the shot.
#2 Let ‘em live!
Bugs LOVE white dresses. The white reflects the light and it much like the moth to the flame analogy. So small bugs will occasionally want to hitch a ride but whatever you do DON’T SWAT THEM AWAY. We don’t want disgusting bug guts smashed into the cloth of the dress. So shake the dress, blow him away or just don’t worry about him unless he seems to be crawling closely to your skin. Most of my little travelers are very small nats that are EASILY photoshopped away from any final portrait so it isn’t worth risking the dress to rid yourself of that little pest.
#3 Protect the dress:
As your are walking through the gardens or getting close to a beautiful flowering bush that will be the back drop for your portrait you will want to protect the dress from bushes and other obstacles. The first and most important way to protect the dress is to take the sides of the dress and pull them up and around you so that only the underside of the train and dress are exposed to the nearby offenders. You should always walk this way throughout the shoot except when you stop at your next shoot location. And never drop the dress until the photographer and friend are ready to help you and ensure that it does not touch any close by bushes or flowers. It will probably take you and a friend to do this as your friend more than likely will carry the dress from behind wrapping it around you will you take the front and pull it up your front to keep it clean. We don’t really worry about the crinoline as that is easily cleaned and no one will ever see it anyway.
#4 Setting the dress for the shot:
This one is a little delicate and requires practice from a photographer who knows what they are doing but a skilled photographer knows how to fluff the dress so that it floats down where only the underside is touching the ground. Again no one is going to see the underside of your dress and unless it is wet most dirt will not stick to the dress without motion to create friction to grind that dirt into the dress. So you should not move while your photographer is setting the dress. Depending on the material of the dress I may be able to float the dress myself or in other cases I will use our lovely handmaids (mom or friend) to help me float the dress. We always count to three and float up and hold it all the way down.
#5 What about the rain?
Although I do not recommend shooting after it rains there are times such as my last portrait where the bride had flown in special for the portrait and really wanted some outdoor shots. We were very very careful. First rather than laying the dress directly on the ground we laid out the sheet first then tucked it under the dress slowly so it would not show in the shot. If you have a thin material this may not work leaving the dress bumpy and not practical for shooting in which case I would re-schedule or go ahead move it indoors with caution. But if possible re-schedule for a better day. You spent a lot of money for the portrait and you want it to be the portrait you dreamed of and moving it indoors may seem like a good idea at the time but may leave you feeling a little unsatisfied later. With that said, if the make up and hair have been paid for and there isn’t another option you can use one from the indoor shoot for the reception then just ask your photographer to take some more the day of the wedding so you can still get some of you in that great dress outdoors.
#6 Watch out for the flowers:
This can be applied to both the bridal portrait and the wedding day as well. There are two hazards with that beautiful bouquet of yours. The first is water. You will probably have it in a vase of water so it stays fresh. Don’t forget to dry the stems before holding the bouquet over that $xxx investment you just made. And second, watch out for the stamens. Most florists remember to remove them but once I had a florist who forgot leaving a small stain on her dress when she held it close to the dress. Good news, the cleaners got it out and it was SILK! A testament to what a good cleaner can do and a good learning lesson for me as a photographer. I have many brides who make their own bouquets for the portrait so if you are one of those you won’t want to forget to remove them.
In 10 years I think I have had maybe 3 people get something on their dresses and in all cases but one they were cleaned and perfect for the big day. The other bride opted not to clean it so I will never know. If for some reason you do get something on your dress DO NOT TRY TO CLEAN IT YOURSELF. Don’t touch it. Most stains occur because the dirt gets into the material. Most things can easily be blown off before they have time to set and if it does get into the material you can make it worse by adding water. So use a professional wedding dress cleaner in the event you have a little accident. Most bridal shops have a cleaners they can refer to you if they don’t do it themselves.
I hope you found this helpful and will take a little of the stress off of you about getting your dress dirty during the portrait!
This was the location for Melinda’s rehearsal dinner so it was very fitting to have the bridal portrait taken here. The Oaks of Salem house was BEAUTIFUL and had the most amazing porches. Melinda was of course beautiful… More to come from her wedding but here is a peek at her beautiful dress. As usual it was SO hard waiting to post these to the blog. Enjoy!
What can I say??? Kasey is absolutely stunning. But not only is she stunning she is one of the nicest people you would want to meet. She is so laid back but at the same time has such attention to detail. Those qualities seem kind of funny to go together but somehow she does it. I had the best time photographing this bridal portrait. Mom and Grandma (in law) came along for the portrait session. They were so fun and we all had a blast. We shot it in Charlotte and I LOVE shooting in new places. It always gets the creative juices flowing. It’s like clay to a sculptor or a new canvas to a painter and Kasey couldn’t have been a better subject. I have been DYING to post these bridal pictures since we shot them and FINALLY today I get to post them since we had their AMAZING wedding last night. THAT was a blast but more about that later when I get to post those too! Thanks Kasey for trusting me with such a special time in your life and thanks Mom and Grandma! It wouldn’t have been as fun without you!! : )
All you need is an unbelievably beautiful dress. A bridal party that loves you and makes you laugh all day long. A family that couldn’t be more overjoyed for you.
All you need is a beloved grandfather to walk you down the aisle. A groom who finds a way to fit your favorite Harry Potter paraphernalia…under your dress. An incredible toast from one brother to another. A great cake smash! Ending the night surrounded by friends, family…and sparklers.
Or maybe, as one very wise man once sang, All You Need Is Love.
So from one Beatles-loving heart to another, congratulations, Megan and Daniel. Your wedding day was perfection from beginning to end…set to really great music.