After crazy, never ending weeks of selling our house, moving, and settling into our new home, I am finally getting Taylor and Matt’s dreamy engagement session on the blog! This was actually the first day that I met Taylor and Matt in person, and I knew that we clicked right off the bat. Well, really, I knew the first time I talked with Taylor over the phone, and she was so super sweet, but once we were all officially introduced, I could seriously picture myself hanging out with these two! I love how relaxed and laid back they were, and their chemistry is on fire. Pretty sure if you want to know what the definition of true southern charm is, you’re looking at it. I am so excited for their wedding day in January, and had SO much fun with them capturing their engagement photos!
Oh, Charleston. How sweet your are to my soul! Y’all, I seriously love this city. And not only because it’s absolutely beautiful right down to every single street corner, but it also holds a special place in my heart. My family and I used to take our yearly vacations there every summer, and Corey and I renewed our vows on Folly last year. So that makes it extra special!
Corey and I surprisingly had a weekend off together (which never, ever happens!) so we decided why not take a fun overnight trip with the boys to one of our favorite places? So, we loaded them up, and we headed down!
On Saturday, we spent the day walking through White Point Gardens, and all around downtown. The weather was absolutely gorgeous, and we couldn’t have asked for a better day to go exploring! The sun was shining, the perfect window boxes were overflowing with blooms, and let’s be honest, is there ever a bad day to peruse through Charleston? I think not! We started out at The Battery, and walked to Rainbow Row, soaking in all of the pretty. It was seriously the best!
Sunday, we decided would be all about the boys, so we headed over to the aquarium! We saw the fish and turtles, and pet the stingrays on our way in! They had the best time! When we were done, we cruised over to Brown Dog Deli for lunch. Y’all, SO GOOD! I had a BLT with the most delicious pepper jelly spread, and it was melt-in-your-mouth amazing! If you’ve never been there, I can’t recommend it enough!
Even if it was only for a night, I’m so glad that we decided to take this trip. Aside from our usual yearly family vacation, we love to take short, overnight trips throughout the year too, and Charleston is always on the top of my list. I miss it already, but we’ll be heading back in June for an engagement session, and I’m counting down the days!
Here’s a closer peek at our weekend!
PS, the aquarium pictures are definitely cellphone pictures! I tried to not have a bulky camera around my neck while we were running after the kids, and having fun!
Jennifer and Ashton are offically husband and wife! I’m a week late blogging their wedding this week since I came down with some kind of plague the night of their wedding, but better late than never, right?!
They had the sweetest, southern wedding, with the prettiest peachy colors, boots, and plenty of laughs to go around! Jennifer looked just like a princess in her beautiful Elegant Bridals dress and cathedral veil, and Ashton had me cracking up all day long! Make sure you catch his pose during his “groomals”.. this is what I’m talking about! Hysterical!
Their wedding and reception were both held at the Big Red Barn in Aiken, SC, and it was so fitting for the theme of their wedding day. Southern charm filled the room during their reception, along with unique details especially for them. On their cake display, there was a wooden crate with an elephant on one side, and the Batman symbol on the other.. two things both near and dear to Jennifer and Ashton! I love little hidden gems like these! Another highlight of their wedding day was that Ashton’s wedding gift to Jennifer was a map of the stars for their wedding night.. talk about goosebumps! So super sweet!
During the reception, Jennifer’s dad called her mother up for a dance, saying that they were both overjoyed for their daughter and new son in law, and that now all he wanted to do was dance with his wife. Cue the waterworks!!! I don’t think that there was a dry eye in the room, including my own!
I’m so excited to see where Jennifer and Ashton’s journey takes them next!
CEREMONY & RECEPTION SITE: The Big Red Barn | GOWN: Elegant Bridals | GROOM’S ATTIRE: Al Dixons Men’s Wear | BRIDESMAID’S DRESSES: Azazie | HAIR & MUA: Deanne Harvey | FLORALS: The Floral Bar | CATERING: Southern Bleu | CAKE ARTIST: Jennifer Hall (Mother in Law) | DJ: Dwayne Hopkins | Photobooth: JW Impressions LLC
Wow, y’all! If you’ve ever wondered what a photographer’s dreams are made of, this is it!
A little over a week ago, I had the pleasure of attending a styled shoot hosted by, once again, my very talented friend, Araka, of Birdie Lane & Co. We had met for coffee a few months back, and she ran this idea by me, and started telling me all of her ideas that she was so excited to bring to life, and how she wanted to host this gorgeous shoot for a handful of photographers to come out, have fun, and build community. She really knocked it out of the park! This shoot was so much fun!
I fell head over heels for this fine art, French wedding scene! There were gorgeous models, a divine cake and tablescape, beautiful, vintage details, and the most dreamy floral arrangements you could think of! I can’t tell you guys how excited I was to meet these incredibly talented vendors from our area and photograph their work.
I’m really happy that everything came together for this event. All week, there had been a forecast of 100% rain that day, even with strong thunderstorms, which did end up rolling through later on that afternoon! Tornado warnings and all! But even despite the intense weather, the rain held off long enough for us to get some incredible shots, and have a lot of fun doing it while getting to meet other photographers and amazing vendors!
Here’s a closer look at this dreamy day!
HOST: Birdie Lane and Co | PLANNER: Riner and Company | FLORAL DESIGN AND TABLESCAPE: Into the Fields Floral Design | CAKE ARTIST & MACARONS: The Maker and the Baker | TABLE LINENS AND RIBBONS: Thistle & Twill | ANTIQUE FURNITURE: Riverfront Antique Mall | GOWNS: House of the Bride | EARRINGS: A Pocket of Posies | TIARAS AND HAIR PIECES: Eden Luxe Bridal | INVITATION SUITE & CALLIGRAPHY: Birdie Lane and Co
Hey, y’all! I’m going to change things up today, and share a blog post for photographers! Today, I’m going to share with you what’s in my camera bag, when I use each piece of gear, and my #1 favorite lens that I can’t live without. Let’s hop right in!
Canon 5D Mark III (Primary Body)
Canon 5D Mark II (Backup Body)
Canon EOS 3 (Film Body)
I use a Canon 5D MK III as my primary body, and a MK II as my backup body. I absolutely LOVE my MK III. The MK II was my first full-frame camera, and it was so good to me, but upgrading to the MK III was one of the best investments I’ve made in my business! I love the image quality, and the colors are so much smoother and creamier. All of the extra focal points don’t hurt, either! I still pull out the MK II when need be, but for the most part, it stays packed away in my bag.
When I want to shoot film, I have my EOS 3. This is a 35mm film camera, and allows me the option to attach my digital lenses, which I love! I do hope to upgrade to medium format in the next year or so, but for a 35mm camera, I really do love this one!
35mm Sigma Art 1.4 for Canon
50mm Canon 1.2L
85mm Canon 1.8
100mm macro Canon 2.8
35mm Sigma Art 1.4: This is a really great lens for tight spaces! I use this mostly for indoor lifestyle sessions, when there is limited space, or if there is a large group that I need to squeeze into the frame. It’s also great for getting a lot of landscape in, if you want a wide shot!
50mm Canon 1.2L: This is my absolute FAVORITE LENS EVER!! I love my 50mm so much. If I’m being honest, this lens stays on my camera probably 98% of the time. I love everything about this lens! It’s sharp, it’s accurate, and you can use it for almost anything.
It stays on for the majority of wedding days, pretty much all of my portrait sessions, and if I can get away with using it for indoor lifestyle sessions, I do. If I had to choose one lens to use forever and ever, this would be it! It’s totally worth the investment!
85mm Canon 1.8: This is another favorite lens of mine. I am an all prime lenses kind of girl, and this is one that you need in your bag if you’re a prime shooter, too. The 85mm is great for tighter shots, portraits, and during wedding ceremonies! It also gives a super creamy bokeh in the background! When you’re shooting a wedding, and standing at the end of the aisle, it gives you that extra bit of focal length that you need, without having to zoom in and out.
Being a prime shooter requires more footwork, but I personally don’t mind it!
100mm macro Canon 2.8: This is one of my newer lenses, and I really don’t know how I ever lived without it! I love my macro on wedding days! It gives the most beautiful ring shots, and is a must have when you’re shooting wedding details. That’s really the only thing that I use it for, but it’s so worth having, just for these purposes alone. I opted for the cheaper option, and didn’t splurge on the L glass, but it’s still a GREAT lens, and it saved some money!
Canon Speedlite 430EX
This poor flash has been through it! I’ve had this flash for so long, and it has been a workhorse for me. A new flash system is going to be another 2019 investment, but for now, this little baby is getting the job done just fine!
Let me start off by saying this: I love my expodisc. However, I haven’t always been a believer in this handy tool! Some people prefer to shoot in auto white balance, some people prefer to shoot in Kelvin, and that’s absolutely fine if that’s what suits you! I have shot in all three, and I truly do love what the expodisc does for my images. It nails white balance every time, and it’s so, so easy to use! It only takes a few seconds to get it set when you’re starting your shoot, and it’s so worth it when you’re editing later on!
A funny little backstory- When I first ordered my expodisc, I read the directions, and figured it sounded easy enough. Went through the steps (or, so I thought), and found that I could tell zero difference in my images. What the heck?! I was so upset that I had just wasted money on this thing! When I took the Amy and Jordan Shooting and Editing course, everyone raved about it, including them, so I figured I’d give it one more shot. Maybe I had done something wrong! I looked up a YouTube video with how-to instructions, and I realized that where I went wrong before was 100% user error. Oops! (In my defense, I’m a visual learner.. you gotta show me!) Ever since then, I learned how to use it correctly, and I love it! Definitely recommend this tool!
The bag on the left is my Kamrette Lyra backpack. I use this bag on wedding days, and it fits all of my equipment nice and snug! There’s also a ton of pockets for extra storage for batteries, memory cards, rolls of film, lens caps, etc. I’ve had this bag for about a year and a half, and it’s still holding up so well! It is much bigger than my shoulder bag, but even considering its size and being full of equipment, it’s comfortable to carry on your back!
The bag on the right is my Kelly Moore Luna bag. I use this bag when I’m doing portrait sessions that don’t require much changing out of lenses and extra equipment, but it also has some inside pockets for extra batteries and memory cards! I love that this one is so much lighter, and I can pick it up and go!
I hope that this post has been helpful! Although I do have my favorites when it comes to my equipment, I would recommend any of the items on this list!