South Carolina | Family Vacation

Hello my lovelies! 

How's everyone's Summer going? It's really hard to believe August is just around the corner and that Summer is winding down. How is that even possible? It is so true what they say, "the days are long but the years are short." 

This has been a wonderful, crazy Summer for me and my little family. I thought I'd share a little recap. My husband, Nick, has been away for several weeks playing guitar in a worship band traveling around the country. I've been here holding down the fort, working, shooting weddings, and running around with my toddler, Mark. 

Last weekend, Mark and I were invited for an impromptu trip to go visit Nick and the band for a long weekend in South Carolina. Ohhh, let me tell you, it was the best thing for my soul. The band has been playing at a summer camp at Hilton Head for the past two weeks. It was so wonderful to get out of town, see the beach (for the first time for me since 2012!), and visit Nick! While we were there, we visited beautiful Charleston - that place is simply DARLING and full of so much history. I'm pretty sure I walked around all day with major heart eyes. Charleston is filled with so many historical architectural buildings, cobble stone streets and alleys, gorgeous cathedrals with majestic steeples, pastel colored homes and palm trees - lots of palm trees. :) 

When plans had finalized for me to go to Hilton Head, I had decided I needed to try and make it to Savannah, Georgia, too! Savannah is so picturesque and only just shy of an hour from Hilton Head. Perfect! I also wanted to check out the famous, eery and beautiful Wormsloe Plantation, specifically the Oak-lined drive. It stretches a mile long, being the longest oak-lined drive in the world. The scenic drive from Hilton Head to Savannah is totally worth it, too. After checking out Wormsloe, which had me totally mesmerized, it started to downpour. It rained the hardest I've seen in a long time, so sadly, I didn't get the chance to walk around downtown Savannah like I had planned, but the drive was worth it just to see Wormsloe. 

Last weekend was the best, quickest long weekend ever and was exactly what I needed. Nick and I are already planning a trip to go back to South Carolina for some day. <3 

*Photos were taken with both a 5D Mark iii and iPhone*

Until the next post. 



Taylor Carstens | Senior

Her Time

"She has been feeling it for a while now-- that sense of awakening. There is a gentle rage simmering inside her, and it is getting stronger by the day. She will hold it close to her-- she will nurture it and let it grow. She won't let anyone take it away from her. It is her rocket fuel and finally, she is going places. She can feel it down to her very core-- this is her time. She will not only climb mountains-- she will move them too." - Lang Leav

I've been dreaming of doing a session with miss Taylor and when the day finally came, I was ecstatic! Taylor recently graduated with a degree in Music Business from Visible Music College. Taylor is an inspiration to me, though she may not know that until she reads this. ;)  She is fearless. She has gumption. She is so kind. In her kindness, she will also tell you the truth, even if it's not everything you want to hear. She is real and genuine. She pursues her dreams with a full heart and lots of passion, but holds them with open hands. Later this Summer, Taylor is taking that fearless gumption, following her heart and dreams and moving to LA to continue pursing a career in the music business industry! This girl is going to change the world and I am so excited to watch her do that. I have a feeling I will continue to learn a lot from her, even from LA. :) 

Aside from capturing Taylor's senior session, we sat at Muddy's Grind house coffee shop, chatted about life, marriage, weddings, dreams for Mary Kate Steele Photography and her LA goals. I'm gonna miss this girl when she moves. Thank goodness family in Memphis will bring her back to visit from time to time. 

Taylor volunteered to be my guinea pig for a new project I am starting at MKS Photography. It's a little something fun, something to inspire others and myself. I don't really have a name for it (yet), but the idea is to spend a morning or afternoon or evening with different people and capture their personal fashion style and personality. Fashion is a huge interest of mine, along with meeting new people or getting to know someone better. I have a feeling this will be a fun journey and we'll see where it goes! Shout out to Taylor for collaborating with me on the idea! If you would be interested in participating in this new project, please let me know! I would absolutely love to hear from you!! :D - Email me:


Mary Kate 

 Isn't she just adorable and such a babe all at the same time?! <3 

Yellow floral romper: Stock & Belle 

Calvin Klein hat: Urban Outfitters

Sneaks: Puma Match Basic Sports Lo Sneakers