Wedding Series: Tips For Brides — The Family Shots

You’re getting married! There’s so much to do, and so many things to get done. Find a caterer, a florist, get the perfect dress, and then make sure you’ve hired the right photographer to capture all of your hard work!

Well, you’ve definitely taken the right step as far as a photographer goes [oh hey, we travel]! 😉

Every Thursday over the next six weeks, I will be doing a piece for our “Wedding Series: Tips For Brides.” It’s going to highlight tips and tricks for the bride when working with a photographer.

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WEEK FOUR: THE FAMILY SHOTS

There are really two types of family photos I’ve found people want — traditional or non-traditional. 

Traditional is typically done at the altar. After the wedding, everyone stays at the church. You line everyone up and get shots like this:

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Sometimes, brides who are fairly traditional (or come from families that are) want these types of shots. The only issue I ever run into with these is lighting. I always ask what it’s like inside their venue, because sometimes churches can be very dark, which make it hard for good pictures — even with lights!

If it’s a well-lit location, and this is really the style you like, then let’s go for it!

The second type of family portraits after the “I Dos,” are the non-traditional. These are ones we take outside. This is also where we can get those candid shots!

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But we can get non-candid, regular smiles, too!

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Or strike a silly pose!

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Make sure to talk with your photographer about the style of photos you are wanting. Do you want them at the altar? Do you want them outside? What’s the lighting situation inside? These are all things to think about!

Tune in next week!

Want to see the series so far? See the entire “Wedding Series: Tips For Brides” series!

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Wedding Series: Tips For Brides — It’s All In The Details

You’re getting married! There’s so much to do, and so many things to get done. Find a caterer, a florist, get the perfect dress, and then make sure you’ve hired the right photographer to capture all of your hard work!

Well, you’ve definitely taken the right step as far as a photographer goes [oh hey, we travel]! 😉

Every Thursday over the next six weeks, I will be doing a piece for our “Wedding Series: Tips For Brides.” It’s going to highlight tips and tricks for the bride when working with a photographer.

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Week Three: It’s All  In The Details 

You’ve been planning this wedding for months — maybe even years. You’ve put a lot of thought into the details, so make sure your photographer captures them!

Each bride puts different details into her wedding. For this country farmhouse wedding, the groom surprised the bride by writing on the soles of her boots she was going to wear walking down the aisle. That was clearly an important detail to capture.

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And while it’s important to capture those unique details, there are some that tend to be the same at every wedding. Make sure your photographer gets these:

  • The Cake

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  • The Rings

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  • The Table Decor

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  • The Bouquet

  • The Boutonnières & Corsages

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  • The Dress (Before it’s on the bride)

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These are some good basics to make sure to capture. If you’re the bride, make sure you communicate with your photographer which details are really important to you. If you’re the photographer, make sure you schedule a meeting with the bride to go over these types of details.

Everyone is unique and different, and these details are often incorporated into the wedding. I am always on the hunt for special things to the bride and groom that they felt important enough to work into their wedding decor.

See the entire “Wedding Series: Tips For Brides” series!

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Wedding Series: Tips For Brides — The “First Look,” / Bridal Reveal

You’re getting married! There’s so much to do, and so many things to get done. Find a caterer, a florist, get the perfect dress, and then make sure you’ve hired the right photographer to capture all of your hard work!

Well, you’ve definitely taken the right step as far as a photographer goes [oh hey, we travel]! 😉

Every Thursday over the next six weeks, I will be doing a piece for our “Wedding Series: Tips For Brides.” It’s going to highlight tips and tricks for the bride when working with a photographer.

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Week Two: The “First Look” / Bridal Reveal 

One of the first questions I ask at my meetings with brides: “Did you want to do a “first look,” or will walking down the aisle be the first time he sees you?”

Here is a first look we did before the ceremony, below. I was able to get this close and intimate specifically because it wasn’t done during the ceremony. It was a special moment set aside for just the two of them (and me … the third wheel photographer). 🙂

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If the bride asks what I prefer — it’s always that we do a special “first look.” It’s where I set the groom up, his back facing away. I bring in the bride. She puts her back against his, or reaches her hand around the corner. There is always so much tension in these shots — the can’t wait to see each other.

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From there, I snap the shots and either take the bride back to her room, or … we let the groom turn around.

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I prefer this because I can catch the intimate one-on-one response of the groom the first time he sees his bride. It’s special. It isn’t a moment that has to be shared in a crowd. It’s just the two of them. 

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Now, sometimes I can’t convince the bride and groom otherwise, and that’s ok. It’s your day! I can only speak from a photographer’s standpoint, because after that reveal, we can take the bridal party / bride & groom shots, etc. — all before the ceremony! After the ceremony, we can snap the family photos, and then send the bride and groom off to the reception and not have to keep their friends and family waiting.

That’s not to say we can’t get great photos if the first time the groom sees his bride is when she walks down the aisle.

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We definitely can, but if I am ever asked my preference — it’s to have a special first look. So I can get shots like this:

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Check back next Thursday for the next post in our “Tips For Brides” series. To read them all, click here.

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Our New Website!

I tried to log onto the Kansas City Photography webpage last week. I was met with an error message. I may have panicked a little, but I figured it’d be an easy fix. I reached out to my web person — but it was crickets. My face was probably equivalent to Miss Luna’s:

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My bells and whistles started going off — and here’s why. This happened one other time, with the same web person. I reached out to him (the same one, I never switched) and he responded saying I needed to pay him to get it back online. I was confused as to why, and he said it was a maintenance fee, and he had to re-build it. I actually lost a potential wedding client over this — they had seen my site, loved my work, and then got concerned when my site suddenly went down.

You’d think I would have learned my lesson then … but, long story short, I stuck with him and he put the site back up (after I paid him again *grumble*), and it has been sunshine and roses since then.

Then, the error (again). And no response.

Instead of waiting around, this time I decided to go ahead and just build it myself. This way I can make changes and add photos any time I want, without having to pay every time I want an update. It was really a long time coming, I should have done it a lot sooner.

Go check it out and tell me what you think! –> http://kansas-city-photography.com

 

On a side note, I recently tried to get Kansas City Photography published on Wikipedia, but I need some press coverage for that to happen. They have really strict guidelines, and I meet all of them but that one. Stay tuned!

A Creepy Car & Playing Around At West Bottoms: Dawn’s Family Photoshoot!

Tatiana here! It was a real pleasure to capture one of my dearest friends being so in love with someone who is also so in love with her! It’s been a long time coming and it just warms my heart that she has reached her “relationship goals.”

 

Dawn Family 18.jpgDawn’ son, Aidan, was the explorer for sure. He is so full of energy and kept wandering off, climbing on things and I just let him do his thing! He just started jumping on things and I was like, “WELP! Since you’re already there…” *snaps photos*

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This one below makes it seem like Lilly and Aidan are about to drop the next hot album in KC. And Aidan plays the drums, so who knows? Maybe this will be a thing!

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In this below, I specifically asked them to do a funny pose. I think the quote was, “act like you guys are in a street gang!” This is a perfect depiction of the Vieux clan ready to rumble! And also proof they could never be in an actual street gang.

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It took Miss Lilly a little bit to loosen up, but I think she enjoyed the pictures! She really liked the ones of just her, which is great, ’cause I would love to rock a senior shoot with her! Hint, Dawn, hint!

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Lilly was just standing on this rock trying to stay away from everyone, but me, being totally impervious just went, “Joke’s on you, ’cause you look cool on that rock!!!” *snaps photo*

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This is my favorite picture of Dawn and her kiddos! It also shows off some hidden treasures of this area known as “West Bottoms.” We just happened upon this hobbit door, it was super random!

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But you never know what you’re going to run into here, which is why we love this location! It even made it in our Top 10 Photoshoot Locations in KC list!

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Although, there was one bizarre incident — there was a black car at the end of the bridge with tinted windows. When we started to take pics, the driver revved the engine and opened the driver’s door … but no one got out! Later, the driver shut the door, and turned the car sideways. This is when I began thinking, “Am I gonna die?!” And Dawn is just like “what poses should we do next?!”

Anyway, no one died … so here we are!

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One Of My Most Important Photography Lessons: Shoot ‘Through’ Things

I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Broadcast Journalism from the University of Missouri. Broadcast works a lot with the camera —  and one of the most important lessons I ever learned was to shoot “through” things.

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It completely changed my perspective behind the lens. It was one of those “ah-ha!” moments. Shoot “through” things. Things other people may not look at — it completely changed how I view the world.

Apply it to photography. See a cool shape? Shoot through it.

A fence or netting? Shoot through it.

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A bride’s veil? Shoot through it.

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How about a beautiful blooming flower? Find a space between the leaves and shoot through it to the subjects in the background.

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And it can be subtle. I was squatting down in some tall grass to get this shot!

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It’s not that every shot needs this “shoot through” treatment, but it should be a component to think about at every shoot. If you see your photographer squatting in the grass, or rolling around on the ground … they’re likely using this technique!

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Wedding Series: Tips For Brides – Portraits

You’re getting married! There’s so much to do, and so many things to get done. Find a caterer, a florist, get the perfect dress, and then make sure you’ve hired the right photographer to capture all of your hard work!

Well, you’ve definitely taken the right step as far as a photographer goes [oh hey, we travel]! 😉

Every Thursday over the next six weeks, I will be doing a piece for our “Wedding Series: Tips For Brides.” It’s going to highlight tips and tricks for the bride when working with a photographer.

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Week One: The Bridal Portrait Session

This week, I’m giving tips for the bride during her portrait session! I always set aside time from the chaos to make sure I get shots of just the bride. You’ve gotten your hair done, your makeup perfected, and spent weeks (maybe even months!) picking out your perfect dress. It’s so important to get shots of you as you are in that moment — ready to marry the love of your life, about to walk down the aisle surrounded by your closest friends and family members. There’s so much excitement shining through your eyes — and a world of possibilities in your future.

There are a few shots I always love to get: 

The Eyelash Shot:

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It’s a classic shot, your head tilted slightly, gazing down, capturing your perfect lashes.

The Silhouette: 

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Definitely one of my favorites. I love playing with the light. I had one bride call me a “lighting wizard.” I’ll take it! These are so pretty and fun to do.

Just The Dress: 

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You spent so much time (annnd probably money, if we’re being real) to find the perfect gown for your big day. I like to get details like this!

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Lacing It Up: 

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Some of the most important people in your life help lace up the dress. It’s usually a mom or Maid of Honor. Although, I’ve had to step in to help countless times when they couldn’t figure it out! I’ll never leave ya hangin’!

Full-Length: 

You’re in the dress, it’s almost show time!

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My last little tidbit to mention is the bouquet.

Where To Hold Those Dang Flowers! 

As every bride will tell you whose wedding I’ve shot — the one thing I repeat over and over and over is: “Hold the bouquet at your belly button!”

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I say it to to the bride and bridesmaids at the beginning of the day. I repeat it before every shot. Sometimes I turn it into a question and ask them, “Now, where do you hold the bouquet?”

I get that chime of a teacher lecturing her class, “At the belllly buttttton,” they repeat back.

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I remind them right before they walk down the aisle when I stop them to take a shot before they continue the rest of the way down. This way you don’t get shots with the bouquets all over the place!

Let’s review! Here are some important shots to make sure your photographer gets!

  • The eyelash shot
  • The silhouette
  • Just the dress
  • Getting “into” the dress / lacing up
  • The bouquet / holding the bouquet at the belly button

Check back next Thursday for the next post in our “Tips For Brides” series. To read them all, click here.

 

The Easter With 8 Baskets & Too Much Candy

My girls somehow managed to get 4 Easter baskets a piece this holiday. I’m not complaining, and I am grateful to those who thought about our kiddos, but I am pretty sure I have eaten about as much chocolate as I do on Halloween … you know, poison control. 😉

We woke up Sunday morning and hid Easter baskets with our cousins Caley and Ezra. Lily and Ezra are little besties, it’s so cute!

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From there, we went to my grandpa’s house. Grandma Karen told me every time I went over there that she had dreamt of hosting an Easter egg hunt on their big, gorgeous yard, but had never done it — and then all the kids grew up. Good news! The kids had kids, and now she was finally able to host her egg hunt!

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My two girls, Lily & Luna, were dolled up in their Easter dresses. Lily’s favorite color is purple, but pink is a close second. When they didn’t have purple, I knew it’d be ok to go with pink!

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Luna’s favorite color seems to be yellow (she’s 2, so it’s hard to tell, but she gravitates toward that color and uses it a lot). My favorite color is orange, so when yellow wasn’t available …

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It had started drizzling, but that certainly didn’t slow anyone down! The egg hunt was really clever — each kid was assigned a certain color of egg. This way, they all got equal!

We also made sure to get a shot of grandpa with all four of his great-grandkids!

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After that, we went over to Bryan’s (my hubs) uncle’s house for his family get together. More eggs to hunt! Luna considered herself an old pro by this point. Lily also killed it at cornhole. That’s the game where you throw the bean bag into the hole on the other side of lawn. Am I making sense? Haha.

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It was a great Easter weekend, I only wish it was mandatory to take Monday off, too!

Want to read more fun stories with our family? Did you know we have a pet pig?

Photo Fixing / Restoration Services? Yup!

The phone rang last week. It was a Kansas number, so I went ahead and answered it since it wasn’t a random number from Florida or Connecticut (anyone else feel like their cell has been extra spammed lately?!). It was a woman asking if Kansas City Photography does photo restoration services. Yes, we sure do! It’s quite the specialty!

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But don’t take our word for it. Let’s show you some more examples! I had a friend come to me a couple of years ago. She said she had no photos of her mom and dad together (her mom passed away years ago), but she did manage to find a photo of them in the same picture … just not standing by each other.

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I did do some digital restoration on the original, but what I ended up doing was more than that with Photoshop magic. I removed the person in the middle, and then cleaned up the rest, added in some fun clouds, brightened the colors (the photo was taken in the 80s I believe), etc.

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I’ve also had several people come to me to “fix” their photos. Not necessarily restore, but fix the coloring, make it look better, etc. Or, in Emily’s case … fix that nail polish! 😉

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Another time, I had a friend reach out to me about a bride who was just devastated with how her wedding photos turned out (I’m telling you, going with the cheapest option for a photographer is a big mistake … there’s a reason they’re cheap) — I took them and edited a handful for her. Once I reached out to the bride with the edited photos, she said she nearly started crying from joy after seeing them.

(Keep in mind, I don’t own these wedding photos. I did not take them. I just fixed them.)

Another time, I had a friend message me on Facebook to ask me to remove her bra strap that was showing in a fun picture of her from a wedding. I get these requests all the time, but until that phone call last week, it never occurred to me to advertise it as a service Kansas City Photography can do.

I recently had an old friend reach out to me. This was the last picture ever taken with her grandma before she died. She really wanted the shot of just her and her sister:

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If you’re looking for photo restoration, or fixes to your photos, make sure to contact us!

 

A Nature Trail Family Photoshoot

Burr Oak Woods in Blue Springs is such a lovely place — it’s full of trails, nature, and perfect photo spots. We love it so much, it made our Top 10 Photoshoot Locations in KC list!

I met with Kody & Kate this Sunday at said nature center. I’ve known Kate for years — it started way back when she came to a Halloween special I was doing in 2012 (I’ve come a long way since then):

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But Mr. Konner is much bigger now!

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Since that very first photoshoot, Kate discovered I am also a Scentsy consultant and fell in love with the Havana Cabana scent. Now, here we are, years later — still friends, Scentsy companions, and photoshoot pals.

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Kate’s family has grown by one since we first met — meet Miss Kaylee.

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Kaylee loves “Hello Kitty” and anything musical! She took a tumble off the bed just a few hours before the shoot and had a nice, big bruise under eye. That’s what Photoshop is for, right? Bruise removal. 🙂

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Kaylee just loves her big brother. She likes to follow him around and do what he is doing! Konner certainly doesn’t mind!

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Konner is so full of energy and fun! He loves to run, climb, find random sticks … 🙂

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He informed me at the shoot he’s having a “Harry Potter” birthday party and I’m invited. He also loves “Power Rangers” and dinosaurs.

I wanted to make sure to get some great pictures of Kate and Kody. These high school sweethearts have been together for 10 years this November — Kate’s nickname for him is “pookie.”

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Right after the shot above, I yelled, “Quick! Kate! Do something ornery!” She didn’t even skip a beat. BOOM. Tongue by his face. This was Kody’s genuine reaction, it wasn’t posed at all.

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Glad to have these two as inspiration in my life — they keep the fun in their marriage, and are so in love!

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