In the last year or so, I have had SO many people approach me and say, “I wish you had taken my wedding photos!” I’ve never felt more conceited in my life than when typing that sentence. I promise I don’t share that to make myself look like the world’s greatest wedding photographer because I am CERTAINLY not. Sure, it’s very encouraging to hear that, but I hate hearing stories of couples who had a bad experience with their wedding photographer. Because your wedding photos are the only material thing that will last past the wedding day, you should be IN LOVE with them! Sadly, this is not always the case, so today I’ll be sharing my 10 tips for picking the perfect wedding photographer!

1. Pick a photographer who you “click” with! You’re going to be followed by this person for your entire wedding day, so you definitely want someone you, your family, and your wedding party will get along with! If you have more of a serious personality, you shouldn’t hire the photographer who’s going to be cracking corny jokes all day.

2. Ask to see their complete portfolio. Many photographers will only post pictures of their bride & groom portraits. While these might be great, what do their pictures of the ceremony, reception, getting ready time, etc., look like?

3. Don’t feel like you HAVE to pick a photographer who lives in the city where your wedding will be. Most photographers will (and love) to travel. Just be prepared to cover their travel expenses.

4. Pick a photographer who has a similar style to yours & your wedding. This one is probably a no-brainer. If you & your fiancé are the type of couple who love quirkiness and a little oddity, you probably shouldn’t book a photographer whose portfolio only features serious faces. On the contrary, if you want your wedding photos to look like they could be in the pages of Vogue, you should pick a photographer who’s style is very editorial.

5. Discuss your expectations before you pick a photographer. If you’re expecting your wedding photos to be ready to be delivered to you within 2 weeks (not super realistic), make sure you book a photographer who works on such a quick timeline.

6. Carefully read over the contract. If you can’t wait to post your wedding photos on Facebook but never realized that your photographer’s contract prohibits you from doing so, you’ll end up being really disappointed.

7. Ask them why they are a wedding photographer! You should hire someone who LOVES their job (this should be true of all your vendors), and you can usually tell a lot by their answer to this question.

8. Make sure the photographer you pick will be able to offer you & your fiancé an engagement session. I’ve talked about this before, but engagement sessions are such a great way for you to get to know your photographer before the wedding day!

9. Ask them about their editing process. You should usually be able to figure this out by looking through their portfolio, but what do their finished photos look like? If you want clean and real looking photos, make sure you don’t book a photographer who airbrushes every face in their photos.

10. Reconsider your budget. No, I’m not telling you to throw your budget out the window, but the fact is that great wedding photographers are expensive. The saying “You get what you pay for” has never been truer than with wedding photography. If the wedding photographer that you & your fiancé have fallen in love with is $1000 out of your budget, consider moving some money around. Sure, that might mean giving up those Kate Spade shoes that you’d been drooling over, but after everything is over, you’ll care more about beautiful pictures than the shoes you wore that day.

Happy Wednesday!


Happy July! It’s so crazy that 2013 is halfway over! June was such an amazing month… I shot two beautiful weddings, spent a week in Jacksonville for my best friend’s wedding, had a mini-LU reunion in North Carolina, and spend a week in Destin for high school camp with our church! I’m glad that July will be a little bit more quiet cause I’m needing some rest after all of that.

June’s BUSINESS Goals

1. Finish reading Jon Acuff’s Start. Uhhhhh…
2. Invest in the Canon 100 2.8L Macro. Just bought it over the weekend!
3. Update all of my paper and marketing products to match my new logo. Still working on this. Slowly but surely!
4. Create custom instructions for clients explaining how to use PASS.
5. Shoot two awesome weddings in Virginia and North Carolina.
6. Continue blogging consistently. I’m crossing this off because I honestly did the best I could. June was SO busy, and I felt like I was barely home. I’m thankful for the next 2.5 weeks at home to get my routine back on track.

June’s PERSONAL Goals

1. Go to the gym at least 4 times a week and do alternating levels of 30 Day Shred 3 days a week. HAHAHAHAHA. Not even close.
2. Have an amazing week in Florida celebrating my best friend getting MARRIED!!!  Loved every minute of it!
3. Take a walk every night with Aaron and Noley. Again, wasn’t home a lot, but we did do this a lot when I was!
4. Celebrate Noley’s first birthday. Judge away, people. Judge away. (Insert sheepish smile here.)
5. Start going through our belongings and getting rid of everything we don’t need or use. Our lease it up at the end of September, and we will most likely be moving. Didn’t even think about it.
6. Unpack my suitcase the day after I get back from traveling.  High-fives to me!!!

And for this month…


1. Continue updating my marketing products with the new logo. I’m doing it a little at a time cause that stuff is EXPENSIVE!
2. Finish Jon Acuff’s Start. Yep. It’s here again.
3. Learn how to shoot with my new 100 2.8L Macro in live view mode. I hear that’s the way to go!
4. Blog consistently. I’m not going to say this is 4-5 days a week because I’ll be out of town at the end of the month, and we all know how that goes.
5. Shoot Josh & Anna‘s Jacksonville wedding with excellence.
6. Catch up on editing. I’m not behind any deadlines yet, but being out of town so much has slowed down the process more than normal.


1. Get a haircut. I understand that this isn’t really a goal, but I’ve been procrastinating on this for a few months now. My ends need some serious help.
2. Take walks with Noley everyday. I cannot believe how nice this summer has been. On Sunday, the high was 75 degrees! Weather like that does NOT make me miss Florida!
3. Clean out underneath our bathroom and kitchen sinks. I’m pretty sure I have a mini Bath & Body Works underneath there.
4. Find someone to teach me how to sew a pillow. It’s sad how much I’ve failed on this on my own.
5. Start a new book. I finished the Harry Potter series, and if I don’t find another fiction book soon, I’m probably gonna start HP all over again.

Here are two shots I grabbed on Sunday during Fireworks at the Crosses at our church’s Pinnacle Hills Campus. It was such a great day… Perfect weather, live music, over 100 people got baptized, lots of junk food (I love funnel cake.), and an epic fireworks show!

Happy Tuesday!

It’s true. In less than 3 weeks, two amazing families from our church will be moving their lives almost 10,000 miles away to Malawi, Africa to serve with Pure Mission. They will be working with an amazing platform at Esther’s House, providing locals with vocational training, agricultural and water development, church planting, widow ministry, orphan care, and medical care. It has been so exciting to see the Carneys and Jacksons prepare for this huge step that God is calling them to take. I try not to be sad when I think of them moving because I know they are following the Lord’s will for their lives. But confession time. I am sad and will miss them all so much. Not to mention that Noley is losing her best buddy Finn. :( Because of that, Aaron and I are already planning a trip to visit and work with them while they are in Africa. Fun fact: Aaron and his family were missionaries in Kenya, Africa for 3 years while he was in middle school, and he has been talking about going back ever since we met! I’ve never been, so I can’t wait to visit and maybe bring some babies home with me! :)

The Carneys and Jacksons designed these awesome shirts to raise money for their move to Africa, and I love them so much that I HAD to share! Each shirt spells out “LOVE”, and you can order them for you and your spouse, kids, friend, etc., so they spell it out perfectly! For example, Aaron has “LO” on the front of his, and I have “VE”! The shirts also happen to be the world’s softest fabric, and you will never want to take it off! If you’re interested in ordering a shirt, contact Lacey here. And yes… They ship! :)

The Carneys! Not pictured: Their SIX kids. And yes, they’re all going to Africa too!

I seriously think these are so clever!

The Jacksons… Remember them? :)

They’re a fun bunch. :)

Watch out for lots of fun stuff coming to the blog this week!

Happy Monday!