A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of filming a commercial project in New York City with some close friends. During my visit, I was able to meet up with Kim & Nuno for their engagement session. We spent a beautiful afternoon exploring the streets of Brooklyn and I had such a great time documenting their love for one another. These two will be tying the knot later this month in Roxbury, NY.
To say that I am excited for Nina & Graham’s wedding later this year is an understatement. I shot their engagement party back in December at the Chevy Chase Club and they were both are so sweet and a lot of fun. Meeting Nina & Graham’s families, and almost their entire wedding party was fantastic too, as it is so nice to be acquainted before the wedding day. Nina & I talked a lot about shooting their engagement session once the Cherry Blossoms bloomed, but unfortunately with the weather we have been having, it did not happen, but instead we had the most beautiful light to work with and I could not have been more thankful. I also had my good friend Jen Jar along to load film for me & capture a few digital images. We started with a walk through Georgetown and ended up near the Jefferson memorial at sunset. I had an amazing time working with these two and I cannot wait for their wedding later this year!
January to April is always a little bit different for me, but this year it has been particularly strange. Since I started my business five years ago, every single year has run into the next without some sort of “off season” or break, but this year I actually had one (I should say that loosely as we are always planning something new). We wrapped up all our edits from 2013 in February thanks to an additional editor, and it has been refreshing to take a break, regroup, and strategize for 2014 & 2015. I’ve made some changes that were sitting in my notes for years that include a new logo/branding (rolling out soon), a better packaging experience, and a redeveloped commercial & wedding portfolio. In the midst of this, I planned a trip back to Las Vegas for WPPI with a few amazing friends that I met last year.
There is nothing more special to me then getting to know a few fellow artists as close friends. This year I roomed with Serena, Jen, & Katie in a huge suite at The Signature, and it was an incredibly fun time, which basically translates to eating amazing food + going to two crazy parties (people..I’m not a party person & neither can I dance, but I tried). My favorite DJ, Ninja Dan & his fiancee Leslie were there to learn + hang out at In-N-Out with me at 1:20 in the morning. Maybe we had a little too much fun at times, but it was definitely an experience I will not forget. A few video classes were added to the roster of classes this year for WPPI, so I was sure to hang out with Joe Simon, Kevin Shahinian, David Robin, Ray Roman, and Adam Forgione (his class was invaluable). Each provided excellent insights to their workflows and quite a few lessons on life. The life lessons really resonated with me personally, as being a business owner 24/7 is a particularly difficult task to handle on your own. My overarching goal continues to strive for a team, and that is something I have been working on for the last year. One of the biggest highlights was a huge party called Silver Rush, that was organized by CineStill Film. It was a basically a huge party for film shooters, and almost all of the major film photographers were there. I was particularly excited to meet Chris Weeks, whose worked I have followed since the days of DeviantArt, and who honestly inspired me to look at photography again with his incredible street work. Plus I got to hang out with Vicki Grafton, Jordan Baker, Elizabeth Messina, Kirk Mastin, Ryan Muirhead, and all my favorites. What is awesome about the film community in general is that there is a real humbleness and passion for art that everyone seems to share & I love being a part of that.
Amidst all of the networking, I really wanted to do a few shoots while in Vegas & we were able to squeeze in two major shoots. The first was with my roomies at the Venetian and the second was an organized shoot in the middle of a desert near Vegas. The desert shoot was organized by a few photographers from a group on Flickr & we were lucky enough to be invited a long by Tommy Huynh. Two gorgeous models, Morgan Venter & Skye Bibby, were styled by Cheriene Galley for the shoot in the desert, and the terrain/light could not have been better. I was not going for specific themes with these shoots, but really trying to work on my direction & posing. One thing you might notice in my work is that while there are many consistencies, there is a lot of change between each shoot or production. I know things will never be perfect & there will always be something missing, but it is what fuels me to create work that is different & hopefully better than the last. A never ending challenge..
For the last few years, Becca & I have collaborated on a variety of personal shoots locally and in London. We always try to do a different concept each time to keep things fresh. We have both reached a point where we need some edgier imagery in our portfolios, so we decided to try something more boudoir with a moody feeling. After going to Masters in Motion in December, I really wanted to try lighting some of my images the same way I would as if I were lighting a film. This resulted in me struggling to put together a 6×6 silk in the attic, but it was well worth it. I want to thank Jen Kidd for being so awesome and letting us use her studio space. The fine folks at Photovision & Indie Film Lab did such a beautiful job with the scanning. Becca and I are already planning our next themed shoot in Paris. :]
Lauren & Nate’s wedding is one that I had been looking forward to capturing the entire year, and it just so happened that it was also the very last one we filmed in 2013. There are many reasons why this wedding was awesome, and its mostly that Lauren & Nate have such fun & amazing personalities, my amazing friends Kristen Gardner & Ali Hebert were in the wedding, Ashlee Singleton & Tricia Christine of Ashlee Virginia Events planned it, and that everything was completely gorgeous. I even took my most popular instagram shot ever on that day (then I kicked myself for not grabbing Lauren & Nate to do another shot there). The wedding & reception were both held at Verulam Farm, a gorgeous venue outside of Charlottesville, Virginia. The property is unbelievable with a large mansion, rolling hills filled with a few horses, and an incredible cider barn that can hold over a hundred of your closest friends + your favorite band. With Fall in full swing, everything had such a rustic look. I had a few rolls of Super 8mm left over from a previous wedding, and decided to surprise Lauren by shooting my last two rolls of Kodak 50D film. Its no secret that I’m obsessed with film, but I believe it compliments the incredibly fun personalities Lauren & Nate have, as well as the elegance of the event. My favorite part of the day was the hilarious first look overlooking the mansions gardens and our stroll around the gardens. The ceremony was held under a large oak tree that sat on a hill in the middle of the property, and it was stunning. Lauren is a photographer too, so she must have planned this, but everything was beautifully backlit by the sunset as the two said their vows to one another. After the heartfelt ceremony, guests headed to the barn where they witnessed one of my all time favorite first dances ever. Lauren & Nate switched up their slow dance into a full blown choreographed dance routine set to Justin Timberlake’s “Mirrors”. By the end, everyone was standing and clapping..it was epic. Afterwards, The Jangling Reinharts got the party started, and everyone danced into the night. I hope you enjoy Lauren & Nate’s film below!
Music licensed through Marmoset
Venue | Verulam Farm
Event Coordinator | Ashlee Virginia Events
Bride’s Hair | Amanda Jones with Reflections of You
Bride’s Makeup | Jeanne Cusick
Bridesmaid Hair & Makeup | Jeanne Cusick
Flowers | Everlasting Flowers
Cinematographer | Josh Gooden
Photographer: Kristen Gardner
Band | The Jangling Reinharts
Caterer | Glorious Foods
Cake | Hot Cakes
Graphic Designer | Clarke Ross Designs