Spring Mountain Engagement Session. JD and Weston’s spring mountain engagement session was so much fun. We started our shoot at Grimes Creek. Everything is so pretty in the spring. The grass is turning green and the threes have new leaves on them. The pine trees stand tall and magnificent. The second location was near Lucky Peak Reservoir. The foothills in Boise are beautiful this time of year. They are so green and the vegetation is gorgeous with wild flowers here and there.
JD and Weston have been together since high school. Their personalities complement each other and they know how to make the other laugh. Their shoot was full of laughter and joy. It was fun to capture. Each location gave a different look for their gallery. It is fun to shoot in two different locations in different outfits. It gave them a good variety and lots of images to choose from. If you need help planning your engagement session I have wrote a blog post and you can find it HERE. Which location was your favorite? Was it the foothills by Lucky Peak or was it the Mountain look of Grimes Creek? I am curious, leave a comment below.
JD and Weston’s wedding is in August in Weston’s parents backyard. I am looking forward to their wedding because I know it will be a day filled with joy and so much laughter. Plus I am looking forward to the warm summer light. There is just something magical about that golden light. I look forward to it each session. I am that crazy gal who will chase the light until it is gone.
Let’s talk about proposals! I have gotten the privilege to photograph two of them in the last month. They are one of my favorite things to photograph. The amount of emotion and excitement is so amazing to experience and capture. The Surprise Proposal at Wilson Ponds took place on Mother’s Day 2020. Brian and Isabelle’s story is quite unique. Brian met Isabelle over two years ago. I think they both knew right away however wanted to both grow together and do the thing we call life for a while. Fast forward to today, they have been together two years and Isabelle gave Brian a timeline. If he didn’t ask before June 15th she was taking matters into her own hands!
After asking for permission from Isabelle’s parents Brian was all set to go. He had already had the ring for a long time so it was go time. They had planned to do it in front of their family during a mock family photo. I was going to stage the photo and then ask them if I could take a few photos of them and then he would pop the big question. However plans changed and Brian just wanted it to be the two of them. I messaged both of them asking if they would still be willing to pose for some photos at one of my favorite locations, Wilson Ponds in Nampa. I posed them for a few shots and then asked them if they could think of any fun poses. Brian got down on one knee and Isabelle knew right away what he was doing.
Tears were shed and lots of laughs and at the end of the day Brian and Isabelle are now engaged. I wish them so much happiness. Happy wedding planning. Now the real fun starts! Congratulations Brian and Isabelle.
Planning a wedding is well….It’s a lot of work. With my experience in the wedding industry as a photographer. I have started to put together some tips for my brides that I have found useful over the years. Tips for choosing wedding colors to have a stress free planning process.
Where are you having your wedding? By this time in the planning process you most likely already have your venue and a photographer. You have most likely decided on an overall vibe of your wedding. Is it a classic, elegant theme at a downtown venue? Maybe its barn wedding with a rustic feel. It could be a simple outdoor wedding with a bright and vibrant theme. Knowing the setting of your wedding will help you choose your colors. If it’s in the mountain look around and draw from the setting. Deep Greens for the Pine Trees and tie in some rich colors with décor and lighten it up with your bridesmaid dresses.
I’m sure you have done some much Pinterest research and gained a vision on the overall theme of your wedding. This overall vision will help you in choosing your colors. Head to the local hardware store and pick up some paint swatches of shades that are the type of colors that you are drawn to. Lay them out next to each other and make sure they complement one another.
Spring, summer, fall, winter each season is unique. The flowers that are present in that season matter. Spring colors are full of light soft colors. Fall colors are rich and warm. Each season brings new colors to light. No matter the season there are always beautiful colors present.
Chances are you have been dreaming of this day a while now and if you are anything like I was I knew that colors that I wanted back when I was 12. Go with what you love and your wedding will be beautiful no matter the colors you choose. What colors set you heart on fire? What goes well with the season?
This is the most important tip. Do not let this consume you, this should not stress you out. There are a lot of colors out there. No matter the colors you choose at the end of the day you are marrying your best friend, your partner in crime. 20 years from now you are not going to look back and remember the stress you went through while picking you’re your wedding day colors.
How to ditch nerves and get an awesome engagement session. Creating an Epic Engagement Shoot We can chat all day about your engagement session. However no matter how much we chat you still get those nerves the day of your session. So many questions racing through your mind. How do I stand? What do I do with my hands? Do I look awkward? These are all common questions. That is where I come in. I have done research and education on posing and helping you create natural portraits while having fun in front of the camera. I can go on and on about the benefits of an engagement session but I have a post for planning your engagement session. You can find it HERE! As for the EPICNESS here are some fun suggestions that will help take your engagement session to the next level.
Planning an engagement lesson should be fun! Do you have a location that screams EPIC to you? Could it be in downtown? Maybe in the mountains somewhere. Location is key and you should think about where you want your photos.
This goes hand and hand with your location choice. Plan your outfits around the colors that will be present with your location choice. Another helpful tip is to bring an extra outfit, one dressy and one casual. Have fun with your outfits but make sure that for the most part they are solid colors without busy patterns.
This should be a fun experience that helps bring out your personalities. Don’t be surprised if I ask your husband-to-be to whisper something in your ear to make you both laugh. Or if I ask you to share a kiss and smile afterwards. All simple tips that help make your photos magical.
Plan to be taking photos for about 90 mins. If we finish early that’s great but there is no reason to rush. Have fun! All this is preparing you for your wedding day. We will most likely do two different locations. To get good variety out of your shoot.
Follow the light. Light is magical and creates beautiful photos. Plan to have your session about 90 minutes before the sun sets. This will allow us to chase the light and create magical portraits. Golden hour gives an incredible glow. It is my favorite time to shoot. Sunrise is always a good time as well.
Getting ready day tips. Did you know that the average bride spends about 4 hours getting ready for her wedding day! Most of you may be thinking 4 hours really?!?! I am not shocked at all! The getting ready part of the wedding day is a fun time for you and your tribe of girls to hangout in a fun non-stressed environment. During this time there are laughs, maybe a few happy tears and most of making memories with your closest girls. It is not all hair and makeup! I have done my research and I have come up with some 5 simple tip for making the getting ready time smooth and less stressful.
Gather your wedding details the week of the wedding and place it all in one place. Things such as shoes, perfume, jewelry (most importantly those wedding rings) and invitation suite. By doing this I can come in and gather them up and begin photographing them as soon as I get there.
Sometimes it is easy to get caught up in the moment and forget to eat. It is always a good idea to have lunch or hors d’Oeuvres brought in. I want to make sure the bride and bridal party has something to last them through the big day. I always suggest lots of water and snacks.
Bring a Bluetooth speaker along for the day. It is always fun to have music playing during this part of the day. Music can help lighten the mood. It is fun to create a wedding day playlist of your favorite happy songs that sets to mood for celebration.
This includes gifts to bridesmaids, moms, dads, etc. and exchanging gifts between bride and groom. It’s such a special time and you do not want to be rushed.
As a bride or bridesmaid it’s always nice to bring an extra pair of comfortable shoes for during reception. After being in heels all day, having a comfortable option to change into is ideal. Please have this packed and ready to go so you don’t forgot them because you may want them sooner rather than later.
These are just helpful tips that I have come up with along the way. I know that planning and preparing for a wedding is hard work. Hopefully these getting ready day tips will help ease the stress a little!
Are you or someone you know affected by COVID-19? There is a lot that goes into planning your big day, no matter where the date falls on the calendar. Sadly today’s brides are faced with a whole new level of planning. COVID-19 is stretching across the entire world affecting everyone and everything in its path. It’s causing brides to change every detail or even postpone the day they have been planning for months and months. With the current CDC recommendations and the ever changing virus, there is so much uncertainty during these times. If your wedding is in the next 8 weeks there is so much to think about. Hopefully this post will help you during this stressful time.
I have done a lot of research in writing this blog post so that hopefully it may give you some tips and things to think about if it arises that you need to adjust your plans. Different planners in the industry and travel experts offer their biggest piece of advice. Be prepaid, follow the local new outlets and most importantly maintain an open conversation with your wedding vendors and guests. Also if you are able to you should book a planner to help you navigate this crazy time. My good friend Anna with Fancy that Idaho is offering a free consultation call for all brides that are affected by this pandemic. She is fantastic and very good at what she does. This is a fantastic offer and she is so willing to help. Problems arise all the time, and some way there is always a solution.
If the wedding is planned after mid-May go along and keep planning, but also keep open communication with your vendors and stay current on the news and CDC updates. You can find the CDC updates here.
Speak with your vendors:
Communication is key. They are there to assist you and help you plan for challenges that may arise. My best advice is to be transparent, 100 percent honest about your plans and your feelings. Revisit the contract that you signed (I hope you signed one). Most contracts cover cancellations and rescheduling. Chances are you have built a relationship with your vendors and they want to do anything in their power to help you.
Inform Your Guests:
Do you have a wedding website? Keep your guests current on any updates that you may have to your wedding. Maybe attach the CDC website so they can plan their travel accordingly. If they are worried about travel or you have many elderly that will be in attendance you could think about possibly setting up a live stream of your wedding, so they don’t miss the big moments.
Take Extra Precautions:
Help keep guests germ free by having extra hand sanitizer stations across your venue. Have signs that encourage extra hand washing. Let your guests know that you are taking these steps to help ease their worry.
Think about eloping:
Eloping may not have even crossed your mind. You, your love and your closest family or friends and a wedding officiant, Save the reception until this whole mess is over. Maybe squeeze some extra money into your budget to have someone film your elopement to play at a later date when you are actually able to celebrate with all of your friends and family. This allows them to be a part of your day without actually being there.
Breathe…Take time to de-stress. This is a hard time for everyone around the country. So many uncertainties, you are not alone! Many people are in your shoes as well as so many vendors. Talk with your vendors. Hash out a couple of different outcomes just in case you need to adjust your plans. Know that I am always here even if you just need someone to listen. No one could have seen this one coming….well at least I did not. It’s not ideal but we will move forward and make it past this. If you are affected by COVID-19 things will workout.
Style of Photography Matters! Finding my style. It’s almost like an adventure discovering new places and new restaurants in a place you just moved to. Once I found it, it set my heart on fire. I know kind of silly but a photographer’s style added to her client experience is what sets us apart. Many hours of editing and developing my shooting style has brought me to where I am today. There are so many photographers out there and so many different styles. Dark and moody, light and airy, desaturated, orange tones and so much more. It is important when choosing a photographer that you fall in love with their style. The photos that they post and what is on their website is going to be the type of photos you will be delivered.
TIP ONE: Choose a photographer that sets your soul on fire. Most importantly you love the colors and tones of their photographs
My Style: My style is clean and classic and bright. I like to think of it as romantic. I do not use any filters, actions, or presets you know the magic one button click and done! Nope all the images that my couples receive are hand touched by ME yes Me! I love editing it is one of my favorite parts about photography. Let’s talk a little bit more about editing.
TIP TWO: Editing what I do and what I don’t. This is a very important questions to consider when hiring a photographer. I do color correct. If something isn’t quite right with skin tones or color tones I adjust that in editing. I do take away blemishes. Planning a wedding is stressful let’s face it sometimes you have the unthinkable happen and you have a breakout. I will take care of you. I had the worst one on my wedding and seeing photos still make me cringe. Times are different now and editing is quicker. It’s an easy fix. I DO NOT take away birthmarks, tattoos, or anything that is permanent. I CANNOT make you slimmer. I’m sorry there are services out there that will fix those type of things but I do not. You are beautiful the way you are and I want to capture you that way.
TIP THREE: The last important questions we will chat about is what you should expect in terms of your wedding day photography? What you should expect when hiring me as your photographer in terms of your images from your wedding day! I show up early usually to start with the detail photographs. I am there to fluff your dress and hold your flowers and so on. Let’s talk about the images I deliver 50-100 photos per hour I am shooting. I will let you do the math.
After you leave for the night I head home and upload photos, back them up and usually post one right way. From there I carefully curate a blog post with some of my favorite images throughout the day. You will have a sneak peek the week after your wedding. This consists of the blog photos and a few extras. After that I work on family photos. Once those are done I will then sort your catalog and select the best of the best to represent your day. You will have a finished gallery within 4 to 6 weeks of your wedding.
I hope this explains a little bit more about the photo aspect of your wedding day. Choose a photographer that you love their style! Photography is an investment remember that. That is the biggest take away from this post.
A winter wonderland sealing at the Provo City Center Temple. I received a message a couple of months ago that Emmalee and Sam were getting sealed in January. I was so happy for them ecstatic, I know the work that goes into this process. See we have some history and to be honest I feel like so much more than just their photographer. It started a long time ago at least it seems like a lifetime to me. Emmalee was my very first ever paying client. I shot her senior photos on my Canon Rebel T3i and my nifty 50 lens. Even back then she was perfect in front of the camera doing those crazy cheer jumps. Fast forward to August 2018 when they said I DO in a beautiful backyard ceremony in Utah. The next morning we took some of my favorite photos of all time at Alta Ski Resort at sunrise. If you want to see their wedding CLICK HERE.
At the time of their wedding I had told them if they ever had the desire to be sealed I wanted to be there. Not just as a photographer but as a friend. It’s such a special opportunity to witness the sealing of two people for time and all eternity. This sealing had another special event. The two of them were sealed to their handsome little boy Liam.
We started the day with formal bridals up Cottonwood Canyon. I had not been up that canyon before and it was beautiful. It is always fun to explore a new place. It was beautiful, full of knee deep snow and gorgeous snow covered trees. The sun was going in and out of the clouds making for some amazing light. You know how I feel about glowing light! I literally get giddy when I get to shoot in it. It is magical.
The sealing took place at the Provo City Center Temple. This used to be the tabernacle until it caught fire. It was rebuilt into the beautiful temple it is today. The exterior is gorgeous brick and is very unique looking. It has a majestic and timeless look to it. We did quick family formals and then a few more photos of the bride and groom here. It was the weirdest weather. I actually caught some of it on video. When we exited it was sunny and beautiful. While we were waiting for the couple the fog rolled in. It came out of nowhere and within a half hours’ time the whole setting was engulfed in this dense mist that made seeing Moroni nearly impossible. Reminded me of one of those scary mist movies. This is when I am thankful for my knowledge of using my camera and my investment in a good camera body. I was able to stay true to my style and still create images that my couples are used to seeing. It was a tad cold but lets’ face it Emmalee and Sam are pros in front of the camera.
They helped me create magical portraits. I am so glad to be a part of their special day. Utah is a gorgeous place to take photos and I hope that one day soon I will be able to go back and shoot again really soon.
Bouquet done by the talented Courtney with Posies Floral design
Dress Latter Day Bride
What is in my gear bag? When I first started my journey in photography I thought all it took was the push of a button to create these magical images I would see. Quickly I learned that there is so much more to that. Different camera modes, different lenses that create different looking images. A manual mode that lets you have complete control of your images and the way they look. I learned quickly that in order to create images that will be high quality and last generations I needed to LEARN.
Quickly I learned I needed to devote a mass amount of my time learning not only learning the ins and outs of my entry level DSLR, but learning how to create a perfectly exposed photo in camera. Thank goodness for my Canon Rebel t3i that started it all. It’s harder than you think. The perfectly exposed photo has to fall right in the confusing ISO-Aperture-Shutter speed triangle.
This brings me to the topic of this post. The gear I carry on a typical wedding day. My favorite gear and what lens I love for portraits. First I will start with my camera bodies. You will find me carrying two bodies every wedding and a backup body that never comes out. I carry two cameras because often times I have different situations where I need two different lenses and I do not want to have to stop and change the lens and take that chance of missing a moment of importance. My main camera body is a 5D Mark VI with my second body a 5D Mark iii. Just in case something happens to one of those cameras I have a backup 6D. All of these cameras are full frame and produce wonderful photographs.
My goto lenses! Lenses are my weakness. I have way to many of them, I keep telling myself that each one serves a different purpose. Most used lens is my Canon 85mm 1.4. This lens is a gorgeous portrait lens. The compression this lens offers is amazing. It is a toss up between my Canon 50mm 1.2 and my Canon 24-70 2.8 lens. I would have to say I use my 24-70 more for ceremonies and family formals. For those ceremonies that I have to be pretty far away, I bring out my Canon 70-200mm 2.8. This lens is a BEAST but it really helps me be able to stay away and let the couple have their moment without me taking away from it. My final lens is a Canon 100mm 2.8 macro. The sole purpose of this lens is for ring photos.
Kinda of silly I know but it takes killer ring shots.
Random gear you find me using. I use two flashes, one is for off camera flash. This one is always on a stand with an umbrella. It helps really fill the light on those dark dance floors. The other is always on my camera. You never know when you are going to need it. It usually will have a MagMod diffuser on it. If you are a photographer you should check them out. I carry all of my gear in a Pelican 1510 rolling case. However, I have a bit of a camera bag problem. Almost as bad as my lens problem. My love for The House of Flynn bags is totally noticeable. I have a couple of those as well. On smaller shoots I will typically have one of those.
I also have a styling kit that I carry to aid me in photographing the details. In this kit I have a styling mat, trays and ribbon that I often use when photographing wedding day details. Hopefully this provided some insights on what is in my gear bag
Below are some images with the settings that I used to achieve the look.
My gear most of it anyways….
Last but not least! The most stylish camera bags ever found at The House of Flynn
Snowy winter engagement shoot. Ruth and Alex’s engagement was full of deep snow and pockets of sunshine. When Ruth had contacted me and said that they were hoping for a snowy feel to their photos I was so excited. Our winter here in Boise, Idaho has been well…. lacking. I was not even sure if we would have snow in the Mountains. Thankfully the week of their shoot storm after storm was scheduled to blanket the higher elevations with the beautiful white stuff.
The light was magical we had the sun peaking between the clouds a time or two allowing me to capture that amazing glow! Then it stayed hidden away for the rest of the session. It was nice because they got the best of both when it came to light.
I am so excited for their wedding Alex and Ruth are part of the local Basque culture here in Boise. They actually had a family function for Alex’s family of making sausage. Their wedding is going to be so unique and full of traditions. I am always so intrigued about seeing different traditions brought into weddings.
If you are on the fence about doing an engagement shoot my advice is DO IT. It helps so much come the wedding day. Not to mention you really get to know your photographer and learn to feel comfortable with them. Thanks for venturing into the mountains. Even trampling through knee deep snow in some places and putting up with my craziness and posing ideas!