Thursday, February 26, 2009

Cheryl & Deon-Adopting again!

I've known Cheryl's family since junior high; so when Cheryl & Deon asked if I'd take some headshots they needed for their "page" on their site, I was really humbled.

Cheryl & Deon already have one adopted son, Jalen, who is now two years old and they are ready to add to their family! This brings up another reason I am so fulfilled as a photographer; I am entrusted by a family to create an image of them that will be the first sight for the birth mother of the couple she will choose to give her child to?! It's SUCH an honor. You can view their page, it's here.

Adoption is an absolute miracle to me; I have several adult friends who were adopted and I know my own life wouldn't be the same without having them here with me. As a mom myself, I really can't imagine holding anyone in higher esteem as I hold birth mothers who make this most loving, selfless choice. Can you imagine? Knowing you can't give your baby the life that you know your baby deserves? Making the decision to change another family's life forever by blessing them with the ultimate gift-- your precious child. It's just mindblowing to me....amazing...kudos to all of you who are involved in one way or another in supporting adoptive families and birth mothers.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Dan & Nicole's Wedding!

Two thoughts come to mind when I think about Dan & Nicole's January 30th wedding; wow it was COLD OUTSIDE and wow how HOT was Nicole's bridal party?!!

I think I just shared this with my assistant, Amanda Mays, but I want to share it with everybody now. While Nicole and her bridesmaids were getting ready at the church, two of her bridesmaids came out to the foyer, dressed in these black satin floor length gowns, hair-BAM!, makeup-BAM! They were so stunning, that when they wisked past a couple of the groomsmen on their way back to the rest of the girls in the getting ready room, I observed the two guys to basically gasp with their jaws DROPPED at the GORGEOUSNESS that just breezed through their view. The ladies were on a mission so they were long gone and had no idea of the reaction they got. . . it was the coolest little moment, so now you know!

The day started off at Cherry Creek Hair Company (253.848.4775) in Puyallup. I thought they did an absolutely beautiful job on everyone and it was a great way to begin Nicole's big day ahead. . .

Smooches for pooches! Nicole's new pup!

It was a fun challenge to get a sweet shoe shot. This was done in a long, dark, hallway with a bit of light shining from the little window in the door. I slid the little table over, got down low, and voila!

A beautiful shot of Nicole. . .you'd never know it was below 40 degrees, but it helps to be wrapped up in the arms of your cuddily husband-to-be.

Dan looking so handsome!

Nicole sneakin' into the sanctuary to get a look at the decor at the altar!

On goes the garter. . . .with a little help from her friends :)
It's true. I love jumping groomsmen.

There was an Airstream on location at the church. I've always loved how futuristic they look and did a little dance inside my head when I saw it! There's at least two things that are sure to get a photographer excited; fantastic light, and unexpected awesome "props".

Did I mention the plentiful supply of cherubic, delightful children? I love this shot of Nicole telling the girls about what was going to happen. Chances are they will never forget being flowergirls and watching Nicole transform into at such a beautiful bride!

Okay so I love this one Nicole, where your brother George is giving you away. . .I can't even look at it without feeling the emotion from this moment surrounding me. And your rose balls look great, BTW! lol

It's here. For real.

How a guy looks when he's soaking up the most amazing woman he's ever met.

The minimalism of this shot puts all the focus on all the right things, I think...I've always been a fan of negative space. The story isn't always told the best including EVERYTHING in a shot.

He was dropping her flower petals, then putting them back in. Seriously, could they be ANY CUTER?!! I LOVE her little folded hands and how sweetly engaged she looks in what he's doing!

Happily Married!! Let the celebrating begin!

Good lighting isn't always about having tons of's more about having it in the right place, aiming the right direction, and the right amount of it. This is a great example of that. The only light was coming from Dan's dome lights in his truck.

The Reception Begins!

Nicole was pretty clever with incorporating the floral decorations from the ceremony into the reception. And just in case you ever need to know, these are much heavier than they look and do require some beefy fishing line!

Here is how Nicole used their wacky engagement photos as reception centerpieces! I think they were a huge hit!

This one cracks me up. Future bridesmaids, you may want to preview the slideshow your friend is putting together for her wedding reception. Just a thought. :)
This was the first time I had worked with Brian Wyatt of Sound Beam Productions (206)371-9577. I can't stress enough how much influence an experienced DJ can have on the enjoyment of your guests at your reception. There is an art to assessing the ebb and flow of a crowd, and interacting with them in ways that are truly entertaining. I have such a respect for DJs that have this ability. You may not know, but the DJ and photographer need to have great communication, most of the time with just nods and "thumbs up" from across the room...before he can announce the cake cut, I need to be on my way over to the cake table...before the first dance, I need to be all dialed in for my remote flash. When the DJ and photographer are in sync, the reception flows beautifully and naturally.

With DJ Brians help, I was able to grab this awesome shot below!

I love this shot of the moms. . . after the "formal" shot of them together, they just got down to business reveling in the countless notable moments of their children's first day as husband and wife! How proud it must feel to be them!

Dan and Nicole had a photobooth which was also a huge hit. Guests and friends could immediately stick their images onto a scrapbook page and write a special message. At the end of the night, how could I resist???

There were so many great moments that day...Dan & Nicole I love you guys!!! I wish you two the BEST!! To see their entire slideshow, click here!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Dan & Nicole's Hilarious Studio Shoot

The story of newlyweds' Nicole & Dan's January 31st wedding really begins back in December when we shot their super-secret studio engagement shoot.

I almost always do engagement shoots on location at a fun spot either special to the couple, or that we come up with together. Nicole, on the other hand, came with with a specific VISION for a variety of different photo centerpieces for her wedding reception. Fun concept shots that fit their personalities shot in the studio with striking colors....shots that would really get the guests started in conversation and mingling about!

This was RIGHT up my alley! I love being able to take clients' ideas and make them a reality. The resulting images were TOP SECRET until they were unveiled on their wedding day....are you ready to see the images??

I would be remiss at this point not to post a couple of teasers from their beautiful wedding!

Nicole is a hairstylist so naturally she wanted to do Dan's hair on their wedding day. However, she didn't want him to see her before their formal "reveal" to each other...The solution? Easy! Dan just had to keep his eyes closed when hey was brought into her dressing room! Isn't that hysterical?! It was the cutest thing ever, shooting Nicole style him up without him having any idea of how absolutely stunning she looked as his blushing bride. . .

This was a fun wedding....more pics and a slideshow to come!