Mark & Laura // A Savannah Georgia Elopement

Mark & Laura got married last Saturday on a beautiful day in Troup Square of Savannah. Troup is a gorgeous square that's a little off the beaten path, which means a bit fewer tourists! Plus there's some great "quintessentially Savannah" spots around  for your first portraits as husband and wife :-)

Thanks, Mark & Laura, for having me photograph your special day! You two are awesome and we wish you the absolute best!!!

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Blaze and John, a French Quarter Courtyard Wedding

I was thinking earlier...for the last 5 years I've been welcomed into many new families. From the moment I walk in on wedding day to the moment I leave, I am family.  That experience is one of the most brilliant aspects of being a wedding photographer.  To go to work and be surrounded by love... I am so grateful.

Blaze and John's wedding had no shortage of love. From the moment I first chatted with Blaze and her fiancee John on speakerphone I knew their wedding would be the kind of wedding that constantly made me tear up behind my camera. They spoke about each other in a way that made their love obvious. You could hear the warmth in their voices as they spoke about each other's quirks, strengths, and dreams.   As a couple, they love to travel and they're super involved in their community - they've created a local Mardi Gras krewe and even have two restaurants, Pop's PoBoys and Central Pizza & Bar. 

For their wedding, they rented a home on Royal St in New Orleans with a carriage house and courtyard out back. Everything about their day expressed their personalities and it made for such a charming setting! They got ready as their family and friends hung lights, created centerpieces, and lit candles as they got ready. John and the two families surprised Blaze with hand written notes of love she would see as she walked to the courtyard with her grandfather. All in all, it was a soulful celebration of love filled with laughter and tears and warm hearts.

-Brei
 

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Ivory & Beau

TODAY I really set my week of right.  I spent the afternoon with the girls over at Ivory & Beau - a stunning bridal shoppe in Savannah. We had a little mini shoot with a Blush by Hayley Paige gown and bridesmaids dresses in a beautiful mauve and rose palette.

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3 Tips To Being The Best Second Shooter for Weddings

Wedding season is upon us! Here in the South we have pretty good weather all year 'round, which means that wedding season comes a little bit earlier for us than it does for most other regions. January is usually a slow month, but with February comes more amazing weddings so I thought I'd do a post on what primary shooters are looking for in a second shooter, and how to be the second that the primary keeps around for the long haul. Here are my top 3 tips.

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1. KEEP IT PROFESSIONAL.

Keeping it professional is always a good way to go, and just an obvious element. Things like: being on time, bringing backup memory cards and batteries, making sure your gear is working and in check, and shooting on a camera with dual card slots are a given.  You should also do your best to memorize the schedule! It's almost inevitable that someone in the wedding party or family will ask you, "Where do I need to be right now?" at any point during the day... & you want to be able to help them! A huge part of being a killer second is to be a team player.  Not only does memorizing the schedule make everything easier on yourself and your primary, but it helps keep everyone else on track too. Plus the planners will totally love you for being like, the one other person who actually knows what the f is going on.    

2. SHOOT LIKE THE PRIMARY

It's totally important for the primary to deliver a seamless gallery from the wedding you shoot with them. Emulate their style and figure out what they like ahead of time.  If their style is more dark, then do not shoot overexposed images! Do some research by checking out their blog or calling them before the wedding and straight up asking. You don't always have to shoot exactly like the primary - we love when our seconds get creative! Most primaries also don't mind if you want to shoot an image or two for your portfolio, so go ahead and feel free to get a few images for yourself after you've made the images you need to make for the primary photographer. 

3. HAVE FUN & KEEP IT REAL
 

It's no secret that wedding days are filled to the brim with every emotion possible & I love when my second shooters really join in and become another friend to the couple. Being overly professional AKA "stuffy" makes people feel awkward and like they have to be perfect, which is NOT what we're going for! If we want them to be real and genuine, then we must lead the way.  Getting in with the bride and groom and experiencing their day with them is part of what makes being a photographer so amazing.  I can't tell you how many times I've teared up during a first look or laughed till I cried with the groomsmen! Don't be afraid to let loose a little and have fun.

Jheri's Bridals at Nottoway Plantation

I was in full swoon mode as soon as I walked up and saw Jheri's in her amazing dress by Hayley Paige.  It was a perfect match for her classic, elegant look and for the beautiful Nottoway plantation where we shot.  Jheri's step father was an architect on the restoration of the historic plantation, so Nottoway is very close to her and her family's heart. 

For those of you who aren't familiar with Nottoway, it is a GORGEOUS plantation home on the Mississippi River in Southern Louisiana.  It has a uber famous all white room that has been photographed a zillion times.  Fun fact!: did you know that the room was made all white by the original owner because he felt that white showed off all of the womens' beautiful ball gowns the best? Jheri's step father told me that and I thought it was just the coolest thing. Like super cool. Oh the days of ball room gowns!

Bridal sessions are some of my favorite photos to make because it gives my bride a time to be in front of my camera before the big day which is perfect to get rid of those in-front-of-the-camera-nerves, and it gives us a chance to hang out with each other and get to know one another a little better. Jheri, in particular, was totally amazing because every idea I had she was totally game for! That's always so exciting to have a bride down for anything - it really let's me get creative and produce some of my best work.

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A Short and Sweet French Quarter Engagement Session

Noelle and John came in from Los Angeles for a friends wedding and decided on a whim that this would be the perfect place for their engagement photos. So they called me up and I had no choice but to say yes to these two super sweet people. We packed a whole lotta love, laughs, cocktails, and wandering around New Orleans' beautiful French Quarter in just 30 minutes! Here's my top picks from their session. Enjoy!

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Penn & Sally

While working on a piece for Country Roads Magazine about Madewood Plantation, I ran into Penn and Sally.  They were guests of the house and they happened to be celebrating their wedding day!

As Sally was freshening up, Penn told me the story of how they ended up together. It's a sweet story of these two kids who initially met in college but lost touch as life took them different ways. Fast forward about 40 years and, in a moment of serendipity, Penn and Sally found themselves in the same room, standing next to one another.  It's been four years since that fateful evening, and here they are now!

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Lacy & Bobbi Sneak Peek

It poured on Lacy & Bobbi's NYE wedding, but that didn't stop them from enjoying every moment of ringing in the New Year with their closest friends & family. I can't wait to share the rest of the photos... their love is truly one of a kind. 

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY TO YASI + PETER!

We photographed Yasi & Peter's beautiful wedding 3 years ago.  It was a cold cold day, but they had a beautiful wedding surrounded by friends and family from *literally* all over the world.  The love surrounding all of us helped everyone to forget all about the whistling wind and to-your-bones chill.  Now Peter & Yasi have two beautiful babies! Oh how time flies.

Cheers!

KAITLIN + ANTHONY // A ROMANTIC BATON ROUGE WEDDING

We had such a great time celebrating with Kaitlin and Anthony at their wedding! From the beginning they totally trusted my vision for their day, making it extra fun to create beautiful imagery for them.  I can't wait to see these in their custom album

Location: Hilton Hotel Baton Rouge
Flowers: Poppy & Mint
Cake: Les Amis Bake Shoppe
Dress: Bustle Baton Rouge
Planning and Decorating: Truly Haute Weddings

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BLAZE + JOHN // SNEAK PEEK

Here's a sneak peek from Blaze & John's totally stunning, completely love filled, French Quarter courtyard wedding.  Feeling the black & white today, so that's what I'll share :-) Enjoy!

This Boot is full of water...

Louisiana, my home, is currently underwater. Luckily my family and I are all safe and dry, but many of my friends were not so lucky.  Louisiana is the earth beneath my feet, the air I breathe, and the blood in my veins. It's the place that's given me incredible life for the past 24 years.

Life has gone on here in New Orleans, but I know just an hour away my neighbors are struggling - and they need our help.  That being said, for every single Wedding Collection booked by 9/30/16, we will be donating 20% to victims suffering from the flood in South Louisiana.

This incredible community has helped to build this small business. Now it's time to show you that we have your back too.

Interested in having us photograph your wedding or elopement? Contact us HERE.

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New Orleans Elopements: Important Document Checklist

Dreaming of an Elopement in New Orleans? Whether you say "I Do" in our historic Vieux Carre, or under the magnificent live oaks of City Park, here are less fun, but very important documents you'll need to remember to bring along with you.

MARRIAGE LICENSE NECESSITIES:
- Current state ID, passport, or driver's license
- Certified Birth certificates & Social Security numbers
- Nonrefundable $27.50 for a marriage license in Orleans Parish. CASH.
- $5.50 for a copy of your Marriage Certificate
- Must be there in person to apply
- Certified Final divorce decree, if previously married
- Certified Death certificate, if widowed

THINGS TO CONSIDER:
- Louisiana residents have a 72 hour waiting period between the issuing of a license and the wedding. This may be waived by a judge - call the First City Court for more information: 504.407.0400.
- Non Louisiana residents 72 hour waiting period may be waived by an Orleans registered officiant upon application citing "serious and meritorious reasons."
- License is good for 30 days.
- Plan to get to the Second City Court by 2pm at the latest.
- Certified copies of your Marriage Certificate are not included, you must purchase a copy at a cost of $5.50.

IMPORTANT ADDRESSES:
ORLEANS PARISH MARRIAGE OFFICE
1450 Poydras St, 4th floor
NOLA, 70112
HOURS: 830-3 M-F, except holidays
PH: 504.593.5100
www.oph.dhh.state.la.us

SECOND CITY COURT - ALGIERS POINT COURTHOUSE
225 Morgan St
NOLA, 70114
HOURS: 9-3 M-F, except holidays
*arrive by 2!!!*

THIS IS 24

Self portraiture has always been a form of self discovery for me. Sort of like acting, I always thought of playing and expressing different parts of my personality as a fun challenge.

It's been over a decade now since I started teaching myself the nuances of portraiture this way, and I still do it. No pressure experimentation is fun, plus it's led to some of my favorite techniques to use with clients. And I'm gonna have a pretty kick-ass archive of self portraits to look back on when I'm old

This is twenty-four.

a little bit of southern posh

Little details ...of the tablescape variety... styled by Southern Creative Co.

 

Anna & Torey's Engagements // Love & Emotion workshop

Sunday, Mark Eric held his awesome Love & Emotion workshop at Melady House in Alexandria, Louisiana. I often shoot for Mark's brand so I decided to go to meet new photographer friends, hang out with old ones, and learn from everyone! We had a total blast and some AMAZING sets to photograph. 

When we all got settled in, Mark told us that he'd be shooting a real engagement session for one of his clients.  I had no idea this was happening when his wife, Heather, recruited me to shoot some frames as well. Little did she know, she was throwing me into the deep end! This was my first workshop and I am a people watcher by nature until I can get a feel for everything. & now, right off the bat, she wants me to shoot in front of 35 other photographers, & for an actual client!? AH. 
But that's one of the things I love about Heather. You can be a nervous wreck and she's still bouncing around forcing you to get in there and take charge. She's pretty balls to the wall & watching her taught me to be more assertive in my approach. I still take time to hang out in the background during weddings & events, but now I do take the initiative to work with the couple/subject to create the images I want.  (*Also, a pro tip for shooting with Heather.... she talks a lot while she shoots. When I learned to shut my mouth (I like to talk to...heh) and listen to her, I learned a LOT.)

Anyway, all of that aside, here are the couple photos I shot in my style & edited for me. Of course I worked in Mark's style too. None of those shots are pictured here, but maybe one or two will make it onto Mark's blog! I can't wait to see what Heather does with em ;-)

ALSO a special thanks of course goes to Mark, for all of the opportunity and knowledge he continuously gives me. I am so thankful for you!

 

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Lake Martin, Louisiana

Lake Martin is a fresh water lake in southeast Louisiana about 20 minutes from where I grew up.  While home for Spring holiday, I went out with my brother and dog & was greeted with a beautifully eerie landscape that was somehow much, much more beautiful than I'd remembered.

It was the moment I realized I truly am a swamp kid at heart.