For a decade or so, every year for Christmas I gave my dad a scrapbook of that cross country season’s shenanigans. When he retired from coaching, I worried that I’d have to find a new Christmas project, but realized I could do almost the same thing, just with our travels instead! I had to wait until March this year to give him his present since we had to postpone our annual trip until February, but I’ve always been the master of spreading out holidays.Read More
I loved giving people gifts. I love even more getting to make said gifts. From age 5 onward, whenever I could, I handmade all family Christmas gifts, starting as early as June to ensure that everyone’s was completed on time.
So, to be able to incorporate gift giving into my business has been a real pleasure. My favorite product that I started offering last year was a parent album, a smaller version of each couple’s photo album showcasing almost exclusively the images that the couple, the parents and siblings are in. This way, each parent gets their own commemorative album tailored to them, highlighting the moments that they were a part of.Read More
They loved so many of the photos that rather than try to narrow it down further, we decided to include near-duplicates (or at least photos in very similar poses/moments) which made for an interesting design challenge combining quite a few photos into one spread. I love the cinematic quality to their album because of this - as if each photo sequence is its own storyboard for a scene in their romantic flick.Read More
My goal was to make the two separate photoshoots blend together into one cohesive story about their lovely weekend, although we only spend about 5 hours total with them. As we ended our engagement shoot (see the full post here) with the most beautiful summer sunset leaving our couple in awe, I decided to set the scene with this opening photo of our Blue Ridge Mountains bathed in color. Photos-wise, from there I moved forward chronologically, ending our first day’s image showing Keya and Eric walking into the distance, alluding to their walk towards their future as husband and wife.Read More
The 5th anniversary gift is typically wood, so we spent Dee and Sam’s anniversary accordingly - hanging out in the woods! Dee and Sam had already planned a weekend getaway to Asheville. So, to help celebrate their beautiful milestone, Dee’s sister arranged a couple’s photoshoot with me so that they could commemorate their weekend. As we were in the middle of June, we chose the Botanical Gardens of Asheville as our backdrop to make use of the bounty of greenery highlighted by a brilliant sunny evening.Read More
I love Katie and Mario’s approach to their album: while we had over 1,000 photos to choose from they managed to narrow it all the way down to 100 (an impressive feat!) so that they could have as many large full-spread images as possible. They wanted to keep it simple, to let the emotional photos to speak for themselves, so we kept the text to a minimum as well, only including one Bible verse layered perfectly over a silhouette I made during their ceremony. I certainly keep the album in mind while photographing each wedding (in fact, I specifically shoot with the flower & layout of each album in my head) but sometimes things work out even better than I’d planned. Being able to pair the quotation “this is a profound mystery” with a silhouette is one of those moments!Read More
By far, my favorite part of creating Nicole and Chris’s heirloom album was interweaving each line of their vows throughout the book. Design-wise, adding text to a photo album presents its own challenges; namely, how to make it readable without distracting from the photos. I shoot each wedding with the album in mind, using compositional elements like leading lines or shallow depth of field to create negative space perfect for overlaying words. Typically, if I’m adding just a few verses or quotations in an album, I can choose which already-designed (by me, in a different program) pages to pair the text with based on the blurb’s shaping. With Nicole and Chris’s I needed to keep their vows in the order they wrote them, and somehow as I was creating the photo layouts for each page, the text seemingly just fit right in perfectly. A reflection of how easily Nicole and Chris work together as well, I think.Read More
Since somewhere around 2005, I made my dad a scrapbook of that cross country season every year for Christmas. Every single year, my mom would collect all of the newspaper clippings (because that was a thing) and I’d collect photos from teammates so that by the end of each season, I could put everything together to highlight that year’s triumphs and shenanigans. As you can see, I’ve always been all about curating memories into storytelling albums.Read More
After everything I learned last year (read more here), I realized that it’s the “helping others” part that I want to focus on most in the coming year(s). This is the first year that my goals will look quite different than they did in the past; traditionally mine have read something like: “more weddings”, “more family photoshoots”, etc. Not that there was anything wrong with that approach, I did need to augment my bookings for my business to be sustainable. However, its the experiences I’m creating through those photoshoots that I want to focus on most.Read More
I like to use the changing of the calendar year as a start- and end-point to evaluate my metrics and to reevaluate my goals. This is the first time that I ended the year with a very different sense of achievement than I began: I entered hoping to bolster my bookings and set my goals accordingly. But I ended having learned the true “why” behind my drive to do each of these types of photoshoots. In essence, my work has become not just about the end product (typically a storybook photo album) but the entire experience of the session, and by extension an enjoyment of life.Read More
I’ve been printing my photos since I first got into photography 15 years ago. In fact, I decided I’d pursue the art further when I won a local photo contest in 6th grade - I’d entered a print of a butterfly. Photographs and collections of photographs have been a part of my life for a decade and a half, and have been the focus of my business from the very beginning. So, to be able to curate my work into our own family heirloom was pretty special.Read More
Among many other reasons, one of my favorite things about elopements is the amount of time I get to spend with each couple taking photos of simply the two of them. As we had over an hour of time for just couple's portraits at the North Carolina Arboretum, Allie and Eric's photo album is a beautiful showcase of their joy in becoming one!Read More
I mentioned in Ashli and Dustin's wedding day blog post that I loved working with them because they were so down to earth, well this translated into the creation of their beautiful heirloom photo album, too. They went my personal favorite route and chose just enough photos to tell their full story, but few enough that their album displayed more than a few full-spread images spanning a breathtaking 24 inches wide.Read More
Each year, right around Christmas, I evaluate my goals from the ending year and then write out my goals for the coming year. I them let them sit for a few weeks while I evaluate other metrics - making sure that these are the goals that really resonate - and eventually come back to them during the first week of the new year to write this blog post. This year I've been so busy that I'm just now getting to it!
Nonetheless, I'm more than a little excited about this coming year. While each of the past 6 years has brought be a step closer to my ultimate career goals, this coming year is the first one where I feel like I'm really on the right track towards doing exactly what I want to be doing. It took me a while to figure out that exact intersection where my skills, enthusiasm for the work and ability to help people all coincide to create my "calling", but I'm only 24 so it's hard to complain. So, without further ado, here are my intended plans for 2018!Read More
New Year's Eve has always been one of my favorite holidays. Not for the parties or the food (okay, maybe the food) but because it's a collective time of reflection and refocusing. I've always been a very goal-oriented person (which is both a blessing and a curse) so for my business, this gives me a very specific deadline to analyze not only the growth and financial status of my business, but also gauge my passion for the work I've been doing and decide what I want to pursue further. I'll discuss in my next post what my goals are for the year, but as it's still 2017 for a couple hours, I want to look back at the goals I set for myself this time last year and reflect on just how beautiful this year was for me.
So here, in the same order as I wrote them last year, are my 2017 goals and how well they played out:Read More
As the theme of the day had been "Just say yes," from Snow Patrol's same-titled song - and their first dance song - we began the storybook album with their phrase. From there, as they'd focused on enjoying time with their friends and family, I dedicated a majority of the spreads to group photos, both the few formals and the wide array of candid shots.Read More
Next to capturing your big day, creating the photo album to memorialize your special moments is my favorite part of the process. To aid you in our creation process, I've put together some step-by-step directions for choosing the specs of your album.Read More
In putting together this album, my focus was to tell Morgan and Mike's story of excitement (particularly in their first look), personality (especially through the personal touches in their decor) and pure happiness at saying their forever vows surrounded by friends and family, even family from across the ocean. Because they did a first look (one of my favorite parts of the day!) we spent the first hour relaxing and taking couples portraits and group shots with their maid-of-honor and best man.Read More