Serena – Annapolis Portrait Photography

Sometimes it’s fun to just take photos of people you know, for no real reason at all.

Serena is an awesome photographer in the Baltimore area (check out her company: Love by Serena) and we’ve been hanging out ever since we hit it off at a networking event last year. Aside from being totally fun and a great partner in Rock Band, she’s also my new fashion consultant. Haha. (I’m totally not kidding about this part.)

And clearly, she’s beautiful! She was a much better model for me than I was for her. :)

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Libby & Jason – Belvedere Wedding Photography

What a fun wedding! It just what I needed to get me excited about all of my 2012 weddings. I had only one wedding in January (which I still plan on blogging about), then nothing for the whole month of February, so by the time Libby and Jason’s wedding rolled around at the beginning of March I was pretty ready to do some serious shooting!

This couple is the real deal. Their love was written all over their faces – I don’t think Jason could have smiled any bigger if he tried!
DJ: Dan Hawkins – Music Masters
Cake: Yias Yias
Florist: Floral Impressions
Makeup: Cara Gibson
Hair: Natalie at Padma Salon
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Marcella & Morris – Mount Vernon Inn Wedding Photography

The 100-hour wedding, as we all started to call it. Planned and executed in under 100 hours!

Morris and Marcella were already engaged, but decided to go ahead and get married during the week that Morris was supposed to be in training for work (but ended up having the time off) and Marcella was home for a quick R&R.; Their story is a unique one, chock full of “meant-to-be” moments and stories of faith after it began in Baghdad four years ago.

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This is just a friendly reminder that I do photography other than weddings too! Take these headshots for example. Who doesn’t love a great headshot? Not only can you update your Linkedin account, you can give one to your mom for Mother’s Day. :)


Danielle & Daniel – Chesapeake Beach Engagement Photography

When Danielle emailed me to ask about doing her engagement photos at SUNRISE, my first thought was, “Yeah! Great idea! It will be totally different and unique!” and the following one was, “In December? At what time?”

And if I’m being completely honest, they may not have been in that order. Ha!

If you know me at all, you know I’m not a morning person. As in, I have serious trouble stringing words together to form a coherent sentence before 8 a.m. Not to mention it’s been years since I’ve watched the sun rise.

But I really did love the idea, and I’m ALWAYS up for trying something new or different so I said, “Sure!” and next thing you know we were on the beach at 6:45 a.m. And it was pretty awesome! Yes, we were cold, and yes, it was early, but Danielle and Daniel’s great attitudes and total cuteness together made everything worthwhile.

Also, Danielle brought me a mug of hot tea! How sweet is that??

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How I Survived Vegas (or how Vegas survived me!)

I spent five days last week in Las Vegas at WPPI, the convention for wedding and portrait photographers. All of the nerdy photo people out there probably know that this is where 16,000 photographers from all over the world gather to learn, network, talk shop, and party. Everyone else has probably never heard of it.

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Letting Go and Being Me!

Before the title makes you think I’m turning into a hippie or something, I’m only talking about my engagement photos. (Yes, I mean the ones I took with my fiance!)

It was a few months ago (okay, like five) but I still want to blog about it.

My friend Kate (of Kate Fine Art) volunteered to take them for us, and I could not be happier! Our styles are quite similar, which made the transition from photographer to subject a little easier for me. I knew I could trust her to execute a vision that would be similar enough to mine that I would be happy, but still very much her own. Because let me just say, it’s pretty stinkin’ weird to go to an awesome location like ours for a photo shoot and not pick up a camera. So I of course had all these ideas about how I would shoot us, and how I would pose me, but I took a deep breath and let it go.

Or at least I tried. You’ll have to ask Kate how well I succeeded. Haha.

No, in all seriousness, being on the other side of the camera is a strange and unfamiliar experience (as I think it probably is for most people, unless you’re a professional model.) I can sum up the biggest take-away for me in one word: trust. I realized firsthand how important it is to trust your photographer. Only then can you begin to establish a connection and feel comfortable.

Relationships are personal. Trust me, I get it. It’s hard to let someone you may not know (and add in a big camera!) see the dorky, laughable, lovable you. But it gets easier when you stop worrying about how the photographer is framing the photo, or what your expression looks like, or if your hair is out of place, etc. Just stop, take a breath, and let it go.

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2012 Books I’ve Read

And just for fun, here begins the list of books I’ve read this year. I’ll update this regularly (assuming I get any reading done! Should be a busy year!) :)

12. One Second After – William Forstchen 7/10
11. The Drop – Michael Connelly 6.5/10
10. The Lincoln Lawyer – Michael Connelly 9/10
9. WordFreak – Stephen Fatsis 7.5/10
8. Mockingjay – Suzanne Collins 8/10
7. Catching Fire – Suzanne Collins 8/10
6. The Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins 9/10
5. Saving Fish from Drowning – Amy Tan 5/10
4. Love and Respect for a Lifetime – Emerson Eggerichs 8/10
3. Fine Art Wedding Photography – Jose Villa 8/10
2. A Clash of Kings – George R. R. Martin 8/10
1. A Game of Thrones – George R. R. Martin 8.5/10

Jessica & Chris – Westin Annapolis NYE Wedding!

What better way to wrap up a great year than to shoot a fabulously fun New Year’s Eve wedding at the Westin Annapolis? It was the perfect conclusion to my 2011. Jessica and Chris are insanely cute together, and their wedding was such a touching reflection of their vibrant, fun-loving personalities. From Chris vowing to pledge his love from the highest mountaintop (Facebook) to the dance they did down the aisle after the ceremony, this wedding was full of moments I’ll never forget!

Special thanks to Stephen Elliot (of Mud Productions) for helping me out! A few of these photos are his.

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Why I Do What I Do

Over the weekend, I got a short note from Sarah, one of my brides from this past May.

I just wanted to share with you how much your photos mean to me. My grandaddy passed away three weeks ago. I never knew how much pictures could mean until I looked back at the ones that you took of him and me at my wedding. You make a difference. :)

Wow! This is what it’s all about. Not gonna lie, I teared up a bit, because I never know when the photos I take might be someone’s last. How humbling is that?

I starting thinking about this and asked myself honestly, “Would I shoot differently if I knew the photos I took would be the last ones to remember someone by?” That’s a hard question, and I’m not sure I want to answer it. But it’s how I should be shooting all the time. And I try for that, I really do. Weddings are about the moments, the relationships, the LOVE for goodness sake! That’s what I want people to remember when they look at my photos.

Thanks, Sarah, for bringing this back into focus for me and letting me share your story.

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