Kelli {BRIDAL} | CHARLESTON PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHER

Kelli {BRIDAL} | CHARLESTON PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHER

Congrats go out to Kelli and David who tied the knot Saturday at the Thomas Bennett House in Charleston!  It was a glorious day for their beautiful wedding.  There will be wedding pictures coming up at a later date, but I am always excited for the wedding to get here so I can show off the bridal portraits.  Here are just a few of the many shots we took all over the grounds and throughout the house.  The Thomas Bennett House is one of my favorite spots in Charleston, as you can see we have so much historical prettiness to work with.  Thanks for being so great to work with Kelli!...
Chad & Betsy {PROPOSAL} | CHARLESTON PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHER

Chad & Betsy {PROPOSAL} | CHARLESTON PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHER

It’s exciting to photograph a proposal…there’s this nervous anticipation of how the bride-to-be will react, the real and unposed reactions of the moment.  My favorite part, though,  is meeting such delightful and thoughtful young men who prepare so carefully for this moment that they even consider hiring a photographer to make sure the day is thoroughly documented.  I was charmed from the very beginning by Chad and his manners.  He was all “yes, ma’am…and thank you, ma’am” in every email he sent. Something I learned from my time with Chad was that Betsy’s dad is an accomplished architect.  He designed the house Betsy grew up in, and that her parents still live in on Pawleys Island.  It was important to Chad we use the house as the backdrop for the pictures.  Chad also made sure he obtained Betsy’s dad’s permission to marry his daughter.  He secretly drove from Florida to Pawleys Island one weekend to visit with Betsy’s dad, and he was the only person for quite some time who knew of Chad’s intentions to propose. On an otherwise normal weekday, Chad arranged for Betsy to get the day off without letting Besty know.  He called Betsy’s supervisor and cleared it with him to pick Betsy up and start the day of surprises.  The couple spent the day in Charleston eating and shopping before heading out to Pawleys Island.  Betsy believed that her parents were out of town on vacation and that she and Chad would be house sitting for them.  But Chad had arranged for their immediate families to be there waiting on them, ready to celebrate the...
from this side of the fence | CHARLESTON PHOTOGRAPHER

from this side of the fence | CHARLESTON PHOTOGRAPHER

It is time to check in, refresh the blog page and let you all know what I’ve been up to lately.  There have been bridal portraits (which can’t be posted until the respective weddings are here), weddings out of town and around Charleston, a gazillion baseball practices and games, a mostly “unplugged” spring break with the kids out of school last week, and Easter festivities.  I’m on the phone alot these days scheduling sessions and rescheduling sessions due to rain.  : )  The buzz is back and I’m not just talking about the bees.  Charleston is in full bloom.  But check out the hail we had last week!  There’s never a dull moment when you rely on the weather for your work schedule. Change has been the theme of 2011 for me thus far.  I’m creeping up on 40 and I keep checking for signs of wear and tear.  Oh, it’s there on the body, but my spirit and outlook are as comfortable and youthful as ever.  Maybe more than ever.  It’s changing the way I see life through the lens. It’s also changing the way I look at people, LOVE people, parent and love my husband.  God’s voice is louder and clearer these days.  I’ve got more purpose and direction and feel drawn to reach out of my comfort zone.  It’s such an amazing thing to match up the passion that’s always been burning inside of me with a direction and an action.  Let’s see…more changes…  The lease on my office space is up in June.  Luke and I are moving out and not sure where to.  I...
JENNIFER & BRETT, PART II {WEDDING}| CHARLESTON WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

JENNIFER & BRETT, PART II {WEDDING}| CHARLESTON WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

Jennifer and Brett are full of that contagious kind of laughter… plus the smirks, giggles and cute jokes.  They don’t take themselves too seriously, so the result is a truly laid back affair where everyone has fun.  Jennifer laughed going down the aisle!  They laughed as they exchanged rings.  Brett smirked and scratched his head all silly like when he realized they’d been pronounced “husband and wife”.  You know, I hope their children and grandchildren look back on these wedding pictures with a sense of wonder at all the joy shared by these two. Let’s be real now.  There wasn’t just a bunch of kissy kissy going on.  Jennifer and her girls can tear up a dance floor!  Oh, my!!  Darrell of The Connellys set up his very popular photo booth on the grounds for added entertainment.  Jennifer might have been in 99% of the pictures.  The camera loves her and she loves the camera!  Well, that is easy to see below. Jennifer and Brett, I wish you continued happiness and a long life...
JENNIFER & BRETT, PART I {WEDDING}| CHARLESTON WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

JENNIFER & BRETT, PART I {WEDDING}| CHARLESTON WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

When I look at my 2011 calendar, I am overwhelmed with this huge sense of gratitude for the clients I get to work with this year.  Happy, fun, artistic and altogether delightful people.  This wedding….well, this couple…they truly kicked off my season in a glorious way.  First of all, the weather was so unbelievably warm and sunny….it was on the miraculous side.  I mean, perfect weather in February?  So God smiled down on them from the start.  And speaking of smiles, Jennifer gives them out freely and liberally to everyone.  That would have to be one of the first things you’d notice about her.  She glows all of the time, not just on her wedding day.  So….Jennifer never gave me a list of pictures, not one request or order.  She just had the time of her life and let it all unfold to be documented naturally and easily.  Can I get an “AMEN”?!  : ) It’s not just Brett and Jennifer that made this wedding so special.  We had our dream team, a.k.a. Luke Wilson Special Events, involved from the day they were engaged.  Luke and Megan did what they do so well, that is, make it look effortless.  But even better, since they were such good friends of the bride, I got to photograph LWSE breaking it down on the dance floor later that evening.  It was a treat!!  Maybe they’ll forgive me for posting all those dancing shots later. All the event rock stars were in attendance.  The floral designs were by Katie Bell of Timeless Designs; Fish catered the event;  Lowndes Grove served as ceremony and...
NIKKI & JEFF {WEDDING} | CHARLESTON WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

NIKKI & JEFF {WEDDING} | CHARLESTON WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

I want to offer a quick congrats to Nikki and Jeff!  The newlyweds are a spunky couple who have enough attitude to share, which you can see below.  Their dinner conversations must be very interesting!  Jeff is deploying this week for a whole year to Afghanistan.  Nikki is newly in the nursing field.  There are teenage children in the household, too.  This blended family was a hoot to photograph.  Here’s a small sampling of the chemistry and laughs they share....
Romeo & Juliet {WEDDING} | CHARLESTON WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

Romeo & Juliet {WEDDING} | CHARLESTON WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

Not every story is easy to tell.  Some stories leave such an impression that words don’t seem adequate.  It’s every photographer’s hope to help tell these stories with meaningful photographs.  This couple briefly stepped into my world and I can not stop thinking about them.  Their story is still somewhat of a puzzle to me, one where I have only a few of the pieces. First, they are the youngest couple I have ever photographed being wed. He is a sailor.  Old enough to serve our country but too young to celebrate the marriage with even a champagne toast. She is a college freshman living on the opposite coast from her beloved, still at home with her mother. She wore an anchor charm around her neck and came down the stairs barefoot to meet her groom, not a bit of makeup on her clean face.  He never uttered a word until he was asked to give his vows, just stood there with his hands folded and face a little red.  I’ve never seen a young man so nervous or hold his breath so long. Her mother was in attendance and their only witness, other than the officiant and myself, to the wedding. I’ve named them Romeo and Juliet for a few reasons. His father does not approve of their relationship….too serious at too young an age.  He is someone of importance in the film industry in Hollywood, and I imagine he has his own expectations for his son. They intend to keep their marriage a secret until they feel it is appropriate to announce it.  Or to recreate it...
A SUNDAY STROLL | CHARLESTON STILL LIFE PHOTOGRAPHER

A SUNDAY STROLL | CHARLESTON STILL LIFE PHOTOGRAPHER

Sunday afternoons are meant for something other than work.  Reflection.  Family time.  Recharing the batteries.  Taking time to be thankful for all the things you hurry past during the week.  It’s been several years since I took the time, or considered it worth my time, to photograph spring flowers.  Today I took the first lap around the block with my daughter on her tricycle, soaking in the sun and blue skies, listening to birds sing as they busied themselves building nests, dodging honey bees drinking up the jessamine nectar….it was rather surreal.  I stopped by the house on the second loop around the block to grab my camera.  My old friend JD would be smiling at me right now for taking some “me” time, whether it was behind the camera or not.  Charleston in the spring is magical and starts earlier than most places.  It’s a joy to call this place...
THE LANGSTON FAMILY {PORTRAITS} | CHARLESTON FAMILY PHOTOGRAPHER

THE LANGSTON FAMILY {PORTRAITS} | CHARLESTON FAMILY PHOTOGRAPHER

Lori and her family have known my family since our children were in school together at Montessori.  And then at the next school.  And then living in the same neighborhood.  And then we found ourselves a part of the same church.   The many intersecting circles of our lives.  It’s such a joy “doing life” together! As her twin children find themselves heading off to high school, Lori knew family photographs were in order.  Time to “stop time” with some memories to hang on the walls.  This brother and sister are definitely siblings.  Plenty of love/punches, smiles/snarls, giggles/screams.  I loved being a part of their afternoon and playing right along with...
SUNIL & HEIDI {WEDDING} | CHARLESTON WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

SUNIL & HEIDI {WEDDING} | CHARLESTON WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

PART 2 OF 2: The personal touches and the family stories really made this intimate wedding special.  Heidi had beautiful miniature wedding cakes designed, one for each guest, instead of the traditional single larger cake.  Heidi’s mother is an excellent seamstress.  She crafted a hair piece, bridal purse and bouquet adornments from the extra rosettes left over after Heidi’s dress was fitted.  Sunil’s parents spent almost 24 hours in airports and on planes traveling from India to be at their son’s wedding.  The families met here in Charleston for the first time.  It was interesting to see the cultures and family traditions mingle in such a sweet way.  And I fell head over heels for Heidi’s little boy, who reminded me so very much of my own little red-headed freckle-faced son. The couple started off with a “first sight” before the ceremony so that we could utilize the grounds for pictures before the sun set.  I love having that freedom beforehand to spend time with the couple getting all the portraits their hearts desire….without missing a moment of their reception! The Wentworth Mansion served as ceremony site and the guests moved their celebration over to Circa 1886 for the dinner reception.   Nancy Russell was the officiant.  Heidi’s hair and makeup were courtesy of Whispers on Wentworth.  The Cake Stand provided the miniature cakes and created the cake display.  All floral arrangements and the bride’s bouquet were created by Ginny Severs of Charming Inns....