Fellow photographers are always some of my favorite clients to work with. They understand the importance of trusting the photographer they hired and their vision and artistic style, but they also bring their own experience and creativity to their shoot. Lately I’ve been working with other wedding photographers a lot, which is both humbling and exciting. Once of my favorites has been Caroline Joy, an incredibly talented photographer formerly of Dallas, now located in Austin Texas. I have always adored her work, so I was literally jumping up and down with joy when she first inquired with me! When I first met her, I thought to myself, this is the closest anyone can possibly get to a real life Disney princess. She is petite, beautiful, has flawless skin and perfect hair, is always happy and laughing, always supporting everyone around her, and generally just a wonderful person inside and out.
Unfortunately, the stars did not align for me to photograph their wedding, but we did the next best thing and headed to Keller City Hall Park to do an engagement and Day After session. Considering Caroline’s gorgeous photos, I wasn’t the least bit surprised that discover that she and Aaron have impeccable style. I especially loved her bright red lipstick and the vintage bridal hairpiece she wore with her wedding gown, as well as their brand new adopted whippet Steve Z (who is already so in love with them, he whined whenever they weren’t within arm’s reach), and most of all their amazing creme Stella scooter that they bought for their wedding day. In fact, I was so obsessed with it that I immediately put it as the #1 item on my Christmas list! Maybe Santa will be kind to me this year, so I can look as cool as Caroline and Aaron! Here are some of my favorites from their day.
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Melissa and Philip are pretty much the embodiment of my ideal clients. They are both gorgeous to look at, incredibly nice, warm, funny, easy to be around, they both have classic and sophisticated style, and most important of all, they are head over heels in love with each other. There’s a joy that radiates from them when they look at each other, and a feeling of love that is so strong it’s nearly tangible when they’re in each others’ arms. They’re also two of the friendliest people I know, and they have made me feel like an old friend since the day I met them. Publishing this session is bittersweet for me, because it means my time photographing them has come to an end, but luckily I still have plenty more photos of these two hot lovebirds to publish here! For now, here’s a look at some of my favorites from their Day After Session at White Rock Lake in Dallas:
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I do Day After sessions all the time, but I can honestly say this is the first time I’ve done one BEFORE the wedding! Paige and Uy wanted to have a large canvas of themselves in their wedding attire to display at their reception, so we met at the Japanese Gardens in Fort Worth to get a few quick shots of them together. The Japanese Garden is one of my favorite places to shoot, everywhere you turn there’s a new and even more beautiful spot. Here are some of my favorites:
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I try really hard not to play favorites with my clients… I’m extremely, EXTREMELY lucky to have some amazing clients that are kind, friendly, understanding, appreciative, and generally awesome in every way. I’m proud of the fact that I’ve never yet had a bridezilla – knock on wood – and I’m blessed to really enjoy every wedding I shoot. That said… When a couple tells you they want to fly you out to Paris and Venice to do some portrait sessions, and they happen to talk your boyfriend into coming along and proposing while he’s there.. Well, that’s a pretty tough act to beat. Abby and Zach will always have a special place in my heart, and I truly loved getting to know them more during our travels throughout Europe. You can’t ask for two better friends than these guys, something I’m sure their bridesmaids and groomsmen would echo in a heartbeat! I’m also very thankful that they’re both completely gorgeous and photograph so well! Here are some highlights from their Paris and Venice Day After sessions.
We got started at the Tuileries, a garden near the Louvre, and eventually made our way through the Louve courtyard and to the Arc de Triomphe du Carroussel. It was absolutely freezing but Abby was a total trooper in her little strapless dress and high heels!
As the sun set and the temperatures plummeted we hopped on the Metro (followed by more than a few strange looks) and managed to snag a few quick shots at the Eiffel Tower before the snow and wind got the better of us.
We finished the session on a high note and headed back into the warmth of our hotel. After a few days of sightseeing and a very interesting overnight train ride, we rose at the break of dawn to get things started in St. Mark’s Square in Venice.
I love Abby’s accessories in these shots. She had actually picked them up the previous day at Murano, a tiny island off the coast of Venice famous for its glass (which they use to make incredible and very pricey stemware, jewelry, chandeliers, and statues).
We finished the photos off with a really neat tradition. If you ever travel to the Ponte Vecchio in Florence, you’ll see hundreds of padlocks along the river, with initials scribbled onto the sides. As legend goes, if you write your initials and your beloved’s initials onto a lock, attach the lock to a city fixture, then toss the key into the river, you’re destined to be together forever. Abby and Zach loved this romantic idea, so they incorporated it into their wedding by handing out locks to their guests as favors. They also brought along padlocks for every city they were going to visit. As we stopped by a bridge on the Grand Canal, they decided to attach their lock there and toss the key into the famous waterway!
A & Z, Jason and I will always love you guys for giving us such a great opportunity to be your honeymoon paparazzi and for being part of such a special event in our lives. I’m so happy to have you as clients, and we’re both thrilled to call you both friends! Congratulations on your fabulous wedding, we know you guys are a perfect pair!
I can’t say this enough – I LOVE DAY AFTER SESSIONS! They are easily my favorite thing to photograph. It is everything I love about bridal sessions, engagement sessions, and weddings all rolled up into one. I especially love it when a couple as much style and personality as Jenny and Casey. I could photograph these two all the live long day and never get sick of looking at their beautiful faces and how loving they are with each other. Posting this session actually makes me a little sad because I won’t have any excuse to put them back on the blog after this! Here are some of my favorites from their Day After session at the Old McKinney Cotton Mill.
There are so many benefits to doing a Day After session.. For starters, you don’t have to spend much/any time getting these photos on the wedding day, so you get to your reception faster and don’t have to leave your guests waiting for as long. You can also go to whatever location you want, and it gives me much more freedom to pose you because I don’t have to be so worried about getting dirt on the dress or the tux. We’re not rushed at all, so we can take time to try new and unique things and get a much more diverse collection of images for you to choose from. Even though the session is called a Day After session, I rarely do them on the actual day after the wedding. Jenny and Casey’s session was done a week after their wedding, and many couples choose to wait until after they return from their honeymoon and have had time to relax and unwind from the flurry of wedding activity. I’ve even had a few couples choose to do their Day After session during their honeymoon – this January I’ll be traveling with one of my couples to Paris and Venice to do their session! If you’re interested in getting gorgeous images of you and your spouse-to-be, let me know!
Okay, so it’s sort of a Day Of Session.. Since Mark and Jaclyn’s wedding ended fairly early in the day, we went ahead and did part of their Day After session as soon as the reception ended. It happened to fall at the perfect time of day, just before sunset, where the light is the most beautiful. Since Kelly and I didn’t know the area at all, I had to rely on Mark‘s amazing-photo-op-location-scouting abilities for our locations, and he certainly knew how to pick them!
Our first major stop was in a little town called Helen, where everything is German-inspired, from the food to the architecture.
Jaclyn is definitely not the type of girl who loves to be the center of attention.. Wandering around in the middle of a busy city square wearing a huge wedding dress was not exactly her cup of tea, but we are so proud of her for toughing it out. Hopefully the photos are worth all the unwanted attention!
After scarring poor Jackie for life, we managed to find a secluded park where we could get some more romantic shots. I love parks!
The next morning we headed to an old abandoned building that we had seen on the side of the road. I love old worn-out warehouses almost as much as I love solid color walls!
Then Kelly spotted an amazing parking lot filled with old vintage gasoline pumps.. What a cool find! We didn’t stay long for fear of someone getting tetanus, but we did get a couple of really awesome shots.
The goal of this shot was to capture the lovebirds surrounded by “tree monsters”… Don’t ask.
Finally we finished the day at a small airport tucked away in the forest. We nearly got run over by a couple of planes trying to take off. Whoops!
Jaclyn and Mark, I cannot thank you enough for allowing Kelly and I to photograph your awesome wedding. We fell in love with the both of you, and I just wish you guys were closer so we could hang out more! If you’re ever in Texas, you know who to call!
Kelly Niemann, thanks so much for taking so many amazing photos and being the perfect second shooter. You’re awesome! Go check her out!
Dear Nikole and Chris’ parents,
If seeing steamy, sexy, awesomely hot photos of your two little darlings makes you uncomfortable… You should probably stop reading right now! I tried to keep it G-rated, but.. well.. newlyweds will be newlyweds!
Day After sessions are, hands down, my favorite thing in the entire world. No contest. One of main reasons I am a photographer is because I love making people feel beautiful and capturing that beauty in images, and I feel that everyone is at their most beautiful when they are dressed up all fancy-like with the person they love most in the world, which is exactly what happens in a Day After session. It also gives people a chance to be totally narcissistic and fill the walls of their home with amazing portraits of themselves, which I of course fully support.
As I mentioned before, I absolutely adore Nikole and Chris for many reasons, but I especially love them for taking some time out of their honeymoon to wander around Puerta Plata with me and roll around in the sand and water. Check out some of my favorites:
Nikole and Chris, thank you first of all for being so easy on the eyes, making my job ridiculously easy, and thank you for being so great to me and allowing me to have a blast with you both during your wedding and honeymoon. I’m just sad that you’re so far away now :( I guess I will just have to make the trek up north to come visit!
Random side note: I am seeing a lot of hits to this post via the NAPP forums, and a friend on those boards informed me that a lot of you all are discussing this post in regards to use of actions and plug-ins. I want you guys to know that virtually every image in this post, aside from the B&W/Sepia images, is pretty much SOOC, with minimal tweaking in Lightroom. In fact, only one action was used, and that is Totally Rad Action’s Old Skool, used on the last pair of images in this post. In the past I have been a big fan of actions, but these days I am leaning more towards the school of leaving images mostly as-is, and letting their beauty speak for itself. In the future, if you have comments or thoughts about my images, I would love to hear them in the comments section of this blog. Thanks! It’s always great to know that my work is inspiring discussion :)