Midwest Wedding Photographer

A Simple Guide to Help Wedding Day Portraits Go Smoothly | Pennsylvania and Tennessee Wedding Photographer

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Let’s be honest, family portraits on a wedding day is probably the least favorite part of the wedding day. If is not organized and there is no direction, it can take a lot of unnecessary time and can be quite stressful for everyone involved. Here’s the thing though, it doesn’t have to be that way! While it may not be your favorite part of the day as a bride or groom, there are a few ways to make it more enjoyable and fun!

As a photographer, I’ve learned from a few wedding day family portraits not going the way I had hoped: they were chaotic, unorganized, me + the bride/groom + parents scrambling to find family members, and everyone being stressed out. I’m putting myself out there right now to say it was partially my fault and learning and growing as a photographer.

I took what I learned from the not so great experiences to make wedding day family portraits a fun, stress free, organized, time efficient and (hopefully) enjoyable experience for everyone! When I meet with each of my brides/couples before the wedding, there are a few things I ask/strongly encourage them to do to help with family portraits.

  1. I ask them to make me a Family Shot List. I ask them to include names of every family member that will be participating in family pictures. People like being called by their name, not just “Hey, Bride’s grandma”. This list is the first thing you need to help family portraits run smoothly and efficiently.

  2. I strongly suggest the couple to assign a good family friend or extended family member from both families to help with the family portrait time. Ideally someone who knows or is somewhat familiar with names and faces of the family. During family portraits, I give the Family Shot list to this designated person. It is their job to read off the list, find those people who are needed for the current picture and the one following it next. This has been a game changer. It not only saves time, but it saves from me, my couple, or their immediate families from tracking down everyone. Now what was chaos (sometimes is organized chaos — LOL), but that one change suddenly makes family portraits way more enjoyable for the couple and their immediate family. They can focus on the pictures being taken and being present instead of half smiling while working about who is and isn’t around for the next picture.

  3. When at all possible, I always ask my second shooter to help me arrange family members. People want to feel taken care of. They want to feel that they are truly important enough to take a moment and tell them where they should stand to flatter them in front of the camera. Having my second shooter around to be another pair of eyes and help me make everyone feel taken care of really changes the whole experience for everyone involved. Win win — always!!

I hope these three little tips are helpful to you, whether you are a bride or a photographer! I know they have really helped me and wedding day family portraits end on a happy note! <3

xo, MK

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A-Simple-Guide-to-help-wedding-day-portraits-go-smoothly

2019 Personal and Business Goals | Tennessee and Pennsylvania Wedding Photographer

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As I sit down to write this, we are only two days away from 2019… Like, What?! How did that happen? Some times it feels as if a year goes by so slowly, but before you know it, a new year comes out of nowhere. This year I made a decision to go full-time with my photography business. Phew. It certainly hasn’t been easy, but I am really happy I did. It forced me to be 150% trusting and reliant on God, my Provider. As I reflect over this past year — the ups and downs, triumphs and failures, mountains and valleys, I can confidently say that through it all God was by my side. There were moments I questioned if He was really there, if He could hear my cries, my prayers; if He would provide.

Darlings, not once has He let me down. More often than not, the way He would show Himself to me looked differently than I expected, but isn’t that how He works? He surprises us and what He gives us is far greater than what we could ever imagine. I’ve been learning how to be still, listen and simply talk to Him. This year I walked through His Refiner’s Fire. It’s taken me a whole year to understand that, but that has been my journey for 2018. Here’s the thing, no one really tells you that your twenties are really ten years of figuring yourself out and becoming confident in who you are, what you believe in, and what you want to do with your life. The teenage years feel like that, but honestly, it’s a whole new level in your twenties. It is ten years of growing into yourself, realizing who will walk beside you on your journey and striving to be the best version of yourself and the legacy you’re going to leave behind. I will tell you that I am not the easiest person to love some times. I’ve made plenty of mistakes this year, but I will not let those mistakes define me. 2019 is my last year in my twenties. Turning thirty is a tad terrifying, LOL, but at the same time, I am so excited for this last year and the ways it will prepare me for thirty. In some ways, for me, thirty feels kind of like a new beginning.

Sitting down, praying and writing out what goals I have for both myself personally and for my photography business, these two phrases stuck out to me and I am running with it: “Just Ask” and “You Got This”. I wrote down 15 goals — a mix of personal and business — that I am going to share below. While I have many more, these 15 have the most significance. :) My hope is that by sharing them, you can keep me accountable. If you see me, ask me about them! If you’re reading this, I’d love to hear from you!

Most importantly though, if you’re taking time to read this, if I have worked with you in any way this year, or if you pushed me to dream big, prayed for me or with me, encouraged me, supported me: Thank you. Thank you for supporting my business — this dream. Thank you for helping make it possible for me to do something I love while also making it possible for me to provide for me and my son— that is such a humbling fact!

Much love, MK

Here’s to 2019 and all the Lord has!

-Learn to shoot film

-Read my Bible daily

-Exercise daily

-Journal

-Send written notes to loved ones

-Take a Mommy and Me trip with Mark

-Learn Photoshop

-Organize a Styled Shoot

-Get my work published

-Knock out debt

-Declutter my life / live with minimalistic intention

-Be intentional

-Pray often

-Drink more water

-Give myself permission to say “No”

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Alyssa & Griffin | Engagement

"You must allow me to tell you how how ardently I admire and love you." - Mr. Darcy

 

When I think about these two, I think about a Jane Austin novel.

When I first met Alyssa, I immediately knew we would become friends. My heart's desire is that will be the case for each of my MKS Brides and that became pretty clear rather quickly once we started talking. Alyssa has the sweetest, most genuine and sincerest heart. Griffin has a steady, genuine and reserved confidence. Together, they are perfectly adorable -- full of laughter, sweetness and joy. They are so in love. (It also made photographing them so easy. *heart-eyes*)

Alyssa and Griffin met at a Redbirds baseball game through a mutual friend back in 2014. Together they love to watch scary movies, attend sporting events - specifically basketball (Go Grizzlies!) and traveling. Weekend getaways are a priority for them when it is possible (Alyssa is a nurse at Le Bonheur). They also have two cats and two rescue pups, which they say surprisingly, all the fur babies get along great! 

I am so excited for their September wedding! It is going to be absolutely beautiful!