31 August 2015

Valerie + Lucas | Engaged

Lately the weather has been amazing, which is a bit odd for August. It's been in the upper 70s and low 80s and the evenings are making me long for those autumn nights sitting around a bonfire. I'm not complaining because my August sessions and weddings have been wonderful. Last weekend I met up with Lucas and Valerie and it was one of the best August days we've had. Yes, you'll notice cloudy skies and most people would call that unpleasant LOL, but I love it for so many reasons. We were able to walk around Red Bud and Lucas' family property and take pictures anywhere we wanted because the sun wasn't an issue.

Lucas is a lawyer in Red Bud and we met in town across from his office to take pictures at city hall. After a few shots downtown we made our way to Lucas' parents home. They live in the country and when we pulled up, right away I saw these beautiful pine trees, barns and sheds. Lucas had ideas on the areas he wanted to use too. We moved all around the farm and the last idea Lucas had was that he wanted to drive out by the pond and the bean fields. It was fabulous because the last few shots really showcased the beautiful skies and the fields.

I had a blast getting to know Lucas and Valerie. They are getting married in December and it's going to be fabulous. Until then, enjoy looking through their engagement pictures.

18 August 2015

Details Matter | Tips For Brides & Photographers

Today I'm talking about wedding details. It's one of my favorite things to shoot on a wedding day and it's usually the first thing I shoot when I arrive at the location where the bride is. I wanted to discuss a few things that can help you get better detail shots on your wedding day. And if you're a photographer, I've got a couple tips for you too.

1.) Accents and Elements From The Day For Styling

If you are having a rustic wedding and you're maybe using wood accents for table centerpieces or lace for runners, I would suggest keeping a piece of that wood and lace for details shots of the rings and wedding stationary. If you don't have anything specific, then I usually shoot details on a bridesmaid's dress or use some flowers to incorporate the color scheme of the wedding. I've even used the bride's dress and veil for detail shots too. The trick is to have sometime that ties in your wedding theme.

2.) Shoot For Vendors

This tip is for photographers only really. When you're shooting detail images on a wedding day, try to keep in the back of your mind the vendors. Shoot different angles and different depths of field for a variety of looks. Then once the event has been shared with the bride and groom, you can send the vendors the pictures so they have images for their marketing purposes. It's a great way to share your work with vendors and when potential clients come in to book with a florist or venue, your name could come up because of your photos.

3.) Keep One Copy Of Wedding Stationary For Pictures

This goes for invites, programs, etc. and the reason is because after something has been mailed, there's a good chance it's been bent and torn up through the postal service. It's really nice to have a fresh new invite to stage for a photo.

4.) Perfume Counts!

I know this may sound silly, but pictures of your perfume bottle are important too! When I mention to my brides that I want them to lay out everything that they are wearing on your wedding day, I want this too. Sometimes it's a simple body spray or it's a nice bottle of some top of the line fragrance. I think it's nice to remember even the smells you had on your wedding day.

5.) Shoot With Album In Mind

Another tip for photographers mainly, but this one is a biggy. I like to shoot my detail shots with the album in mind (even if the couple hasn't purchased one). Some of my brides come back after the wedding a purchase an album separately and others are DIY album makers. It's always nice to have a spread of detail shots and have the theme/connection of elements shine through. Here are a few examples below.

I hope you all have a wonderful week. Stay fabulous!

12 August 2015

Bryce + Jodi | A Beautiful Navy & Orange Wedding - Steeleville, Illinois

It's been a whole month since I last blogged anything and I'm a little ashamed of myself. I really don't like slacking on the blog simply because I love writing to you all (whoever actually reads these things). I never thought of myself a good writer but I love writing about love stories.

Bryce and Jodi were married on August 1 in the beautiful small town of Steeleville, Illinois. For it being August, the weather was actually quite awesome. It could have been a LOT hotter and a lot more humid but it was perfect. When the groomsmen aren't sweating to death in their suits in the middle of summer, you know it's a great day!

Bryce and Jodi were set up by Andy, Bryce's best man. Andy had been trying to set them up for a while and telling Bryce how amazing Jodi was and vice versa. It was never good timing I guess. So, after planning a family BBQ, Andy invited Bryce to come eat and hang out and told him that Jodi would be at the BBQ too. It didn't take long for Bryce to say, "When do we eat?" The rest is history pretty much and after buying a house and 2 dogs, they finally said "I do."

I'm so honored that Bryce and Jodi picked me to tell their love story through their wedding photos. It was a beautiful day shared with family and friends and I cannot wait to show you my favorites from their big day.

Check out these heels! Jodi made them herself!

Jodi's mom helping her get ready.

Cute robes girls!

There were charms with pictures on Jodi's bouquet with pictures of her grandfathers and Bryce's grandparents. Bryce didn't know about it and Jodi was going to surprise Bryce with it during the "first look."

Bryce is a huge Chicago Bulls fan (anything Chicago really.... even the Cubs) and Jodi gave him some Bulls cufflinks.

First look time....

As you can see.... Bryce was very happy.

Checking out the bouquet...

You two are just too cute!

Gorgeous, Jodi!

Was feeling a little creative with this shot LOL.

This was a very fun bridal party!

Ceremony is about to begin. Here are a couple detail shots.

As Jodi started to walk down the isle with her father, I turned around to look at Bryce...

and it was precious! I love looking at the groom when the bride walks down the isle.

One of my other favorite parts of the ceremony is when the hand off happens between the groom and the bride's father.

St. Mark's Lutheran Church is so beautiful and I love the natural light that flows in on ceremonies.

They were pretty pumped to be husband and wife finally.

Lucy and Lily! So cute! They even and cute little flowers on their collars.

Cutting the cake!

When Bryce moved to Steeleville a few years ago, he became the basketball coach at the high school. Well, that first year of coaching led him to a regional championship which the school hadn't seen in a long time. Here is a picture of him with some of the guys from that team.

Dancing their first dance as husband and wife :-)

I love daddy/daughter and mother/son dances a lot. So special.

Hope you all enjoyed!