Tag Archives: wedding photographer

PHOTOGRAPHER SPOTLIGHT : KENNI VIAL

Business Name: Kenni Vial

Website: www.kennivial.com

Where are you based out of? Beaverton/Portland Oregon

Are you currently a part-time or full-time photographer? Part-time

What is your predominant photographic specialization? Wedding/Couples

What camera(s) do you currently shoot with? Nikon D3

How would you define your style?
My style tends to gravitate towards a lighter and brighter look. Living in the PNW my surrounding colors are green. Lots and lots of green!

 

 

What motivated you to become a photographer?
My husband started doing sports photography for our University and our friends started asking us to take their engagement and family pictures. After we graduated we didn’t do much at all with photography for a few years. About the time my 3rd baby was born I was looking for a creative outlet so I started taking more pictures of my kids! As I posted pictures to my social media my friends started asking me to do take their pictures and it snowballed from there. I’ve been very blessed to have a lot of support from the beginning.

What is it that you try to convey with your work?
Love. It’s such a cliche, but it’s true. I want people to be happy when they look at my photos. If you see love you feel happy whether you know the subject in the photo or not.

How do you accomplish that?
It’s all about the comfort for my subjects and for me my weapon to get people happy is to make stupid jokes. They’re usually jokes poking fun of myself that gets them laughing the most and more comfortable with me in general. If I can get the couple or families laughing at me then they’re laughing together and laughter means happy and if they’re happy they’re comfortable.

Have you had a photographer inspire your work, and if so, who and why?
I’ve always loved Ansel Adams from the beginning. He had such a way of capturing the beauty of things in the simplicity of black and white It’s amazing! My friend that has sort of mentored me over the years, Brinn with Almira B Photography, has always been an inspiration to see work and then see her work. She makes the most simple shots beautiful and is never afraid to try something completely new and different. She’s all about pushing the limits, I love that.

What is your most memorable accomplishment so far in your photography career?
Probably the first wedding my husband and I shot together. It was a family friend and we basically ended up paying to do it. She asked us to fly to San Diego and we were so excited to be a part of something that important. I was still so inexperienced, but we killed it. I was so proud of us, we poured in three full days of shooting between the bridals, wedding, and two receptions. Even after editing I put together a video for them, which I’d never done before (and haven’t done since haha) and for being so new to it all I was so happy with how it all turned out and the best part was the couple was beyond thrilled! They felt so important and they saw how hard we worked. It really put a spark in me that what I did, even if financially it wasn’t worth it, the response and love we got in return and how proud we were of our work ourselves was so wonderful.

What is one thing you have learned during your career?
To do what works best for me. It’s been tricky waters to navigate being a mom of 4 full time and trying to do add in photography without becoming too overwhelmed with the tasks for both sides. I love getting suggestions or reading what works for other photographers to see what could work better for me and that helps a lot, but in the end, I’m only part-time and ‘finding the balance’ is real. I do my best with what I can do right now and I’ve had some amazing clients and many of whom return for whatever next important milestone is in their lives and I love that. Over the years I’ve gotten a lot of support and feeling of community with my little gig and it’s been a real blessing for me.

Which Photographer Supply Company products do you currently use?
Right now I’ve been using the wooden USBs’ and the coordinating wooden magnet lid boxes. They’ve been so beautiful and my clients are always so impressed with the extra thought of the packaging.

How have Photographer Supply Company products helped your business?
The products that I’ve used from PSCo have been my all time favorite. You can’t beat the price and the quality. It doesn’t feel cheap and I love that, plus you can create whatever feel you like with the products.

PHOTOGRAPHER + VIDEOGRAPHER SPOTLIGHT | THE COMPASS POINTS HERE

Name: Courtney & Michael Kent

Business Name: The Compass Points Here

Website: www.thecompasspointshere.com

Where are you based out of? Traverse City, Michigan

Are you currently a part-time or full-time photographer? Full-time

What is your predominant photographic specialization? Weddings and Editorial food and lifestyle

What camera(s) do you currently shoot with? Canon 5DMKIII

 

How would you define your style?
Fun. Happy. Centered on people and relationships. We want our work to be beautiful of course – but going beyond just pretty imagery, we are hoping to capture the heightened emotions and incredible joy that takes place on a wedding day. We also greatly prefer natural light to artificial sources and want to shoot outside as much as possible!

What motivated you to become a photographer?
When I was young I loved photographs and spent tons of time looking through albums that my mom would put together. I also discovered boxes of much older photographs at the homes of my grandparents and great grandparents, and I would ask them about the images – many of which documented the immigration of my family to the United States from Denmark. I would ask my great grandfather questions about his family and the fishing town he grew up in, and it felt like I was becoming a little family historian at the age of 10. It wasn’t until high school that I started to love actually taking pictures myself.

Michael has a fairly similar connection with videography. He has always loved movies and would spend hours analyzing them with his two brothers – comparing shooting styles, directors, soundtracks, dialogue, etc. Good storytelling has always been important to him. So you can see threads in our current work that go all the way back to aspects of our childhood.

Michael and I met at the University of Michigan’s School of Art & Design, so the beginning of our professional development really began there. However, there aren’t courses specifically for wedding photography and videography; that has been largely self-taught. Ultimately, we both have a strong desire to live creative lives and make things!

Lauren & Michael // A Wedding Trailer from THE COMPASS POINTS HERE on Vimeo.

What is it that you try to convey with your work?
While we love the flowers, the food, the details that make someone’s wedding day truly their own, we firmly believe that the most important part of the wedding day is the relationship between the couple and their family and friends. Our hope is that when a client looks back through their collection of images or watches their wedding video, they will see connection and emotion running throughout; the quiet moment when a grandmother sees her granddaughter in her dress for the first time, the big emotional moment during the middle of the vows, the hilarious joke told by a best friend during cocktail hour, the crazy multicultural dance party at the end of the night. Unique moments like this happen at each and every wedding we have the privilege of being a part of. We want to bring our clients back into that space every time they see our work.

How do you accomplish that?
This might sound obvious, but I honestly believe it starts with taking a sincere interest in each of our clients. We spend a lot of time preparing for each wedding we shoot. Our planning questionnaire is detailed and extensive. We truly believe that a lot of our success comes from attention to detail and preparation. You also have to find a balance between letting things unfold naturally and stepping in to direct a situation when necessary.

What is your most memorable accomplishment so far in your photography career?
Being asked to travel is honestly so flattering. There is so much talent in this industry, so when someone seeks you out specifically it feels so gratifying. We’ve had clients change their wedding dates to work with us or use airline miles to fly us to their wedding. That is still so amazing to me! In 2012 I was also asked to go to the Dominican Republic to document the work of the underwater archaeologist Charlie Beeker. That work has since been published in Discover, New Scientist, Sport Diver and American Archaeology magazines. I’ll always be incredibly grateful for that opportunity.

What is one thing you have learned during your career?
There is so much more to being a professional photographer & videographer than just taking photos and making videos. Customer service needs to be a huge priority for continuing success. Your clients are important and they need to feel important. So if I’m feeling overworked to the point that I’ve neglected communication or some other aspect of customer service, I always try to figure out how to remedy that quickly.

Which Photographer Supply Company products do you currently use?
We currently use – and love – the custom branded USB’s in the light wood.

How have Photographer Supply Company products helped your business?
As soon as I received our first order of custom branded USBs – I immediately felt more professional. And no one is going to take you seriously unless you take yourself seriously.

Maryal & Chris // A Wedding Trailer from THE COMPASS POINTS HERE on Vimeo.

PHOTOGRAPHER SPOTLIGHT | BOKEH STUDIO

Name: Abhishek & Payal Patel

Business Name: Bokéh Studios

Website: www.iambokeh.com

Where are you based out of? Chicago, Illinois

Are you currently a part-time or full-time photographer? Part-time photographers

What is your predominant photographic specialization? Weddings and Engagements

What camera(s) do you currently shoot with?  Canon 5D Mark III

How would you define your style?
We would define our style as lifestyle photography for weddings and engagements. It’s candid, yet done so with some direction and styling and it also has an approachable feel and a relaxed result. We also like to capture candid and spontaneous photos of people, décor and the action as well! We look for intimate spaces for portraits and prefer to learn about the couple prior to their wedding day so that the interactions the day of are seamless, which ultimately enables us to create lifelong moments.

 

What motivated you to become a photographer?
We got our start in photography after being avid photographers at events, family outings and just enthusiasts, which eventually led to an opportunity shooting a friend’s engagement photos in Chicago. Since then, we’ve grown into a full studio specializing in weddings, however, we also capture occasional family sessions.

What is it that you try to convey with your work?
We know how important a couple’s day is. And we know how important it is to trust your photographer or videographer. You get one shot at this—it’s important to do it right. We are here to guide couple’s through the process and we love getting to know people, what’s important to you, how you met, etc. Getting to know the couple’s story allows us to incorporate their personalities into their event and make their images unique.

How do you accomplish that?
Telling a special story is a gift and an art we cherish. Through our passion for creativity, we uniquely capture couple’s stories about one of the biggest days of their life: their wedding day. We thrive on building relationships with our couples through our recognizable photography and videography so we can showcase their distinctive personalities. When you work with Bokéh Studios we tailor their experience to fit their vision. Create your own story is our tagline.

Have you had a photographer inspire your work, and if so, who and why?
We have been very fortunate enough to watch our friend’s photography businesses’ grow throughout the years so that has helped alleviate any major struggles. We have spent an exquisitely long amount of time behind the lens, but our initial love of the camera came from getting our own photos taken by remarkable photographers that have all turned into great mentors and friends and helped us turn into a successful wedding photography and videography business.

What is your most memorable accomplishment so far in your photography career?
Our years of dedication to the art of professional photography and videography has been noticed and awarded on national and international levels. We’ve been featured in the Daily Herald, Gay Bride Guide, Wedding Guide Chicago, Borrowed & Blue, Love + Wander, Windy City Media Group, The Big Fat Indian Wedding and more!

What is one thing you have learned during your career?
Chicago is a strong and vibrant city and provides a great starting point for remote businesses, however, it is a very competitive landscape. There are a lot of very talented photographers that vie for the same attention when seeking potential couples, but there is a lot of opportunities to learn and grow. The architecture and history of the city also provide a great landscape for capturing the essence of what it means to live in an opportunistic area and there are also many big businesses and small businesses to connect and collaborate with.

Which Photographer Supply Company products do you currently use?
We use the wooden 4GB and 8GB USBs!

How have Photographer Supply Company products helped your business?
We wanted to provide our clients with a unique offering with our USBs and Photographer Supply Company were able to deliver the perfect solution. We can’t wait to share our client’s photos with these!

THE DSLR TO MIRRORLESS SWITCH – ARDENT STUDIO

There is no bigger thrill to me than documenting a couple’s big day as they spend it with their family and loved ones.  I’ve been shooting wedding photography for almost 10 years now.   About 6 years ago, I started to get an interest in documenting my own life.  In this age of social media, photographing everything we do is so easy with the technology available to us.  The problem was, in order to get the same professional quality photos you were used to giving to your client, you would have to carry around your big body DSLRs.  I don’t know about you, but after taking my Nikon d4 with the smallest fixed lens I owned on a night out with my friends bowling and bar hopping, I lost interest in that idea pretty quickly.  

I started researching point and shoot cameras.  I was ready to compromise the DSLR quality of my images for something more portable.  The idea was to find something that was smaller than my DSLRs but had better image quality and control over my cell phone camera. 

Upon researching for smaller, portable cameras, I ran across the Fuji x100 mirrorless camera. I was immediately in love with this camera already for its old vintage film body look.  After researching for a few weeks, I finally pulled the trigger on my first mirrorless camera.  The Fuji x100 promised the same picture quality as any DSLR and it came with a 35mm equivalent f2.0 non-interchangeable lens.  

I was super excited taking this with me on a night out.  It was small enough to fit in my pocket and I was blown away with the quality when I loaded up the photos.  The only problem was the autofocus sucked so bad.  The EVF (Electronic View Finder) was also really weird.  I loved the old analog film body feel when I was dialing in my exposures, but everything else felt a little too electronic for me.  I went through 2 generations of the Fuji x100 series before I called it quits and went back to my DSLR.  

It wasn’t until a few years later when a videographer friend of mine was raving about his Sony mirrorless.  I kind of ignored the conversation until I heard it was the first full frame mirrorless camera.  After a few weeks or researching, I was sold on the Sonys, but a $2800 price tag for a camera and one lens combo was kind of steep for a “play camera”.  After another week or two of debating, I told myself that as long as I can use this smaller setup for my sessions, it would warrant the price.  That was what I sold myself on before pulling the trigger on a Sony a7s + a 55mm 1.8 Zeiss lens.   

As soon as it came in, I took it out for a session the next day.  I remember telling my clients that my big cameras were in the shop for repairs, so I had to use this little camera for today.  I remember the look on their faces before I told them I was kidding.


Fast forward to the end of the session, I rushed home to load the images on my computer.  I was absolutely blown away by the quality.  There’s a quote going around that says, “Zeiss is nice.”  I now understood the full meaning.  The sharpness and contrast from that lens just blew me away.  I decided to take it as my second body for a wedding that weekend.  At the time, I was a one body and change lens kind of guy.  I just couldn’t carry two DSLRs on my side anymore.  I decided to dig up my dual strap and have my Sony on the side of my hip.  It was a little confusing at the beginning of the day because I shoot from the LCD screen when I use the Sony.  I kept waiting for the live view to show up when I switched back to my Nikon body before realizing I needed to look through the viewfinder.

I was amazed at how well the camera focused.  The church wasn’t that dark, but it shot like a champ at the reception.  What shocked me was how clean the ISO was.  I knew from my research that the Sony a7s had amazing ISO capability.  It was labeled the ISO king at the time, so I pushed some extra high ISO on purpose to compare later in post-production.  I swear 6400 and even 12,800 iso looked like 3200iso on my d4.  Needless to say, I shot 90% of my shots from the Sony the following wedding.  What started off as a play camera ended up being my work camera.  I did a fire sale on all of my Nikons and made the complete switch to the Sony system.  A lot of people asked me why I didn’t buy a Nikon adapter and save myself from buying Sony lenses.  I wanted to go smaller and be more portable, so buying an adapter and keeping the big heavy DSLR lens defeated that purpose.  I loved how small all the lenses for the mirrorless lineup was.  

I shot exclusively on the Sonys for 2 years before recently making another complete switch to a different mirrorless camera system.  All of the Sony lenses were starting to be the same size and in some cases, bigger or heavier than DSLR lenses.  This defeated the purpose of why I made the switch to mirrorless in the first place.


The next step I took in the mirrorless camera world was investing in the Fuji X-T2 camera. I love how small and fast and decently price the Fuji XF lenses are.  I also love how simple the controls are as the Sony’s were a bit menu driven.  I will say I miss being able to push my ISO to 12,800 on my Sonys with full confidence that I will not have to deal with any noise issues.  I’ve shot dark ceremonies in hotel ballrooms with no natural light at 25,000 ISO on my Sony’s and came out with awesome images.  But with all that being said, I absolutely love how light my bags are for my sessions, my weddings, and yes… my travels.  



The only Sony body I still own is my Sony rx100iv.  It is literally the size of a point and shoot camera that offers professional quality.  It’s awesome when I just want to throw it in my pocket knowing I probably won’t shoot anything, but it’s nice to have just in case and it’s small enough to where it doesn’t feel like extra weight.



So to close out this article, mirrorless cameras do not produce better quality photos than dslrs.  Your images won’t magically look different.  The main thing to me is it is the same quality as the bigger DSLRs.  The lenses are smaller.  The comparison of my Fuji xt2 with a 35mm equivalent lens to a Nikon 750 + a Sigma 35mm Art is Day and Night.  We’re not even comparing to the flagship bodies such as the d4 or d5 bodies.  Going smaller has also allowed me to shoot with dual bodies now so that completely eliminates the need to change lenses now.  The EVF has improved so much since the Fuji x100 days.  You see exactly what your final image will be.  It is such an invaluable tool for sunny days where you can’t chimp the back of your LCD to check your exposure without having to do the under the shirt trick.  

My favorite thing about mirrorless camera now is I can find birdseye angles and low ground angles so easily because we shoot from the LCD screen instead of the viewfinder.  If I want a high bird’s eye view, I simply tilt the top of the screen down and raise the camera high above my head.  If I need a low angle, I flip the bottom of the screen up and just crouch down a bit.  No more laying in a bush of poison ivy, (yes, it happened to me twice), to get your shots.  


If you’ve been wanting to make the switch from DSLR to mirrorless, the technology has absolutely caught up.  In some cases, the technology is better than DSLRs.  Go smaller and still bang out the highest quality images.  How can you say no to that?  I couldn’t. =)


PHOTOGRAPHER SPOTLIGHT | STILL CO

Name: Roxanne & Trent

Business Name: Still Co.

Website: www.still-co.com

Where are you based out of? A small town in South Carolina near Aiken, SC

Are you currently a part-time or full-time photographer? Full-time

What is your predominant photographic specialization? Weddings and elopements

What camera(s) do you currently shoot with? Nikon d750

How would you define your style? A good mixture of “moody” and “classic” + candid

 


What motivated you to become a photographer?

I’ve had a passion for photography since I was around 10 years old when I would film my family’s Christmas gatherings. So my mom bought me my own video recorder and a film camera. I’ve been hooked ever since.

What is it that you try to convey with your work?
We try to capture the natural emotions from the wedding day so that our client’s love for one another is preserved through our work.

How do you accomplish that?
Less posing + more of them hanging out together and enjoying alone time on their wedding day.

Have you had a photographer inspire your work, and if so, who and why?
A mix of many people. I follow a lot of great photographers on Instagram and I love keeping up with the Photobug Community Facebook page.

What is your most memorable accomplishment so far in your photography career?
Just being able to continually book new clients is a great accomplishment. We are so honored to work with so many exciting couples!

What is one thing you have learned during your career?
Don’t get caught up in other people’s work. Push yourself to try new things. Surround yourself with great photog friends who help and encourage you.

Which Photographer Supply Company products do you currently use?
Engraved wooden USB drives and the wooden boxes. We just tried out the Chiffon Gauze Ribbon and it’s awesome! Such beautiful products that our clients always love. Also, shipping is so fast!

How have Photographer Supply Company products helped your business?
The presentation of our product delivery has been taken to a new level as well as helping define our brand!

PRODUCT ANNOUNCEMENT | NOIR SLIM BOOK CLOTH 4×6 PRINT + USB BOX

One of our most popular products has a new fabric option available in our store now! We are pleased to introduce, Noir. You can select our newest option by selecting “Noir” under the ‘Color’ drop-down menu in our Slim Book Cloth 4×6 Print + USB Box listing.

Our Slim Book Cloth 4×6 Print + USB Box are a perfect solution for the photographer looking for a box that holds prints for packages that include 25 to 75 prints. The Slim Box holds approximately 75 4×6 prints or 5 of our 4×6 Fabric Matboards.Complete your presentation with one of our Wood or Mirror USB Drives, available in capacities ranging from 4GB to 128GB.