WPPI Business Mentoring Sessions!

The end of February is quickly coming and March will soon be here.  You know what that means – WPPI!!!!!!!!!   Yes, we will be going, and cannot wait to see some of you again and meet the rest of you for the first time!  Ya gotta love big photographer conventions with thousands of other photogs! On our blog next week will be events & speakers that you do NOT want to miss out on including a few appearances and lighting demonstrations that we will be a part of!  Make sure to stop on by. Exciting WPPI News We have been asked by tons of photographers to host some sort of workshop while we are at WPPI.  We love doing big group events, but at the same time there is nothing more beneficial than one-on-one time with others.  That being said, we have decided to offer an exclusive amount of one-on-one hour and a half mentoring sessions while we are at WPPI!  We are opening three sessions for the first three photographers to sign up! These mentoring sessions will be a unique opportunity for you to have us all to yourself  for one and a half hours and talk about anything from marketing and branding, to social networking and pricing, to anything else you want to know about. Do you want to make a six figure income shooting weddings? Do you want to work with clients who LOVE what you do and make you excited about going to work? Do you want to have a business that you run, instead of having a business that runs you?  Do you feel... Read More

House Update!

A lot of you guys have been praying for us for our house and tweeting & emailing your support for us, so we thought that we would give an official update of everything that has transpired in the last week! Good News: As tweeted last week, we finally heard back from the seller’s bank the end of last week and we got verbal approval of the offer that we had put on the killer townhome we wanted to buy! Bad News: The seller decided he didn’t want to go through with it once he learned that he was going to have to pay taxes on the difference.  *Sighs* We decided we were done with the hassle of trying to make it work and wait for his realtor to try and convince the seller otherwise.. Good News: In the meantime an opportunity opened up to buy one of the townhomes just a block down that the builder has been trying to sell for the last two years.  We have decided to move on it and purchase that one!   It’s more than perfect (same floor plan & size though), we now won’t have to do any work on the home, and it’s brand new.  No stink from other people living in it :)  Funny thing is, we have had our eyes on this place for over 5 months now, and we are finally getting it.  We are set to close AND to move out Monday! Yay!  We are excited, and everything is good to go on Monday, we are just holding our breaths until it all actually comes to fruition. Now... Read More

Squint Recording Artists, Joel & Luke Photo Shoot

Last Tuesday we had our blog from our recent shoot of Squint recording artists, Joel & Luke and today we are posting some images from the rest of the shoot! We had an awesome time working with these guys and not only did we get some cool images, we had a fun time hanging out with good friends. We have known these guys for a few years now and this is the second shoot that we have done for them. You can see images from their first shoot we did for this dynamic duo here. This shoot was set up by the label to be an update to their already cool image. These shots will be used for new promo material while they work on their new record. You can check out Joel and Luke’s music by going to their web page! Enjoy the... Read More

Friday Fun – Battle of the Sexes

Zach I enjoy getting together with other couples and having some tasty dinner, hanging out and playing games… though it CAN get a bit competitive at times when I feel the need to beat Zach every now and then and keep him humble! :) One evening we went over to Paul & Laura‘s house, a former Bride & Groom of ours, for a delicious dinner and a round of the awesomely fun game, Cranium WOW.  We had a great time, though I honestly can’t remember who won… probably the girls :) At certain points in the game, there is what’s called a Club Cranium, where both teams compete at the same time (in this case it was drawing).  You have one person from each team sketching for the other player on their team trying to get them to guess what it is that they are drawing.  The only catch is the one who is drawing is doing so WITH THEIR EYES CLOSED. So get your game player big boy pants on and play along!! Here we go with a Club Cranium Senso-Sketch!! Hint: Character Drawing by the boys team: By the amazingly and artistically talented Zach “Flat Brush” Gray! Drawing by the girls team: By Laura “Colour Shaper” Morris! Obviously the girls won this one since Zach’s drawing looked like a vomiting mountain roach (I love you babe! :).  So, lets see who can guess the right answer!! What is... Read More

IN-CAMERA Photography Workshops are coming to Lansing, Michigan!

Jody and I are super pumped to be coming to none other than Lansing, Michigan in May for our next installment of the IN-CAMERA Photography Workshops!! Jody will be hitting her old stomping grounds as she grew up in Redford which is just outside of Detroit. Woo hoo!! We are really excited and cant wait to see family and friends and meet new photographers!! To see the class schedules and specific dates, visit the IN-CAMERA Photography Workshop Website. We will be hosting three workshops at Jason Aten’s studio including IN-CAMERA: Shooting & Post, IN-CAMERA: Light and introducing for the first time IN-CAMERA: Business! This new business workshop titled “Executing the Dream” is a bonus add-on for Michigan attendees only and is going to show you how we went from shooting our first wedding in June of 2007 for $500, to making a six figure income just one year later. We are going to take you through our entire business model that has allowed us to run the business that we want instead of having a business that runs us. Topics covered will be: Marketing, Branding, Standing Out, Pricing Yourself to Succeed, Investing in your Clients and Vendors to Work for You, Creating Balance, Dreaming Big Dreams and Executing Goals. This workshop is 3 hours in length and is priced so that you can attend the shooting workshops you want, and get the business workshop you need. Only $99! These workshops will sell out fast so if you know you want to come, don’t wait as we will not be able to add on any dates like we have done... Read More

IN-CAMERA: Photography Workshops are coming to Connecticut!!

We are super excited to announce that the next city we will be traveling to with our IN-CAMERA Photography Workshops is Hartford, Connecticut! To see the class schedules, dates, and to register, visit the IN-CAMERA Photography Workshop Website. If this is your first time hearing about our IN-CAMERA photography workshop series, you will actually learn how to shoot images that amaze right in the camera. We will show you how we shoot photos like the one on the right, below, with no Photoshop work and next to zero post-production time (you can see more images from workshops on the workshop web page). These workshops feature class time, hands-on shooting with professional models, on location studio lighting, post-production  and much more. These workshops are super fun, informative, and a great time to hang out with and meet other photographers who want what you want – great images without having to spend hours behind a computer screen editing. These workshops will sell out fast and have limited seating,  so be sure to sign up now to ensure a seat!! We are super excited to be coming back to this area! Last time we were in town we spoke at the CT PUG to a full house, had an awesome shoot by Justin & Mary Marantz and loved everyone who we met! We can’t wait to see you all again and visit!! Sponsored by: PS. As of now we have one more state in the books for Spring… Announcement will be made Thursday at noon!  If you are interested in bringing the IN-CAMERA workshops to your area, email us at... Read More

Advanced Studio Lighting

Today we are going to take a look at an image that I (Zach) shot for new Squint recording artist Joel & Luke. These guys are really amazing and shooting them was a blast! Joel (who is in the shot below) and his brother Luke are incredibly talented and have an amazing sound. We will do a full post on their shoot soon so stay tuned for that! The image below was a complicated shot done with 3 lights on-location inside Healthways company in Franklin. This is simply an office space that we turned into a studio for the shot. Here is the set up. HOW WE DID IT: As you can see from the behind the scenes image, there were offices, signs, and tons of junk in the background that we did not want in the shot.  Also, you could also see right through the chains, so just lighting it from the front would not have been sufficient. I knew that lighting the back of the gold chains would create this highlighted effect with light shooting around in the background and would make the shot look like it was right out of the studio. We set up one light in the front that was almost straight on (glamor lighting) and used a huge light source that makes the light super soft  and gives it that painted on look. The soft box above is 5 feet in diameter and that is why the shot has this look. We then added two kicker lights (or separation lights) at 45 degree angles coming in and hitting the background to light it... Read More

Photography Mentoring Session with the amazing Courtney Helton!

A little bit ago we announced our mentoring sessions, and thought that we would share the latest session we had with you! On Saturday, Jody and I had the awesome privilege of spending the day with Courtney Helton who is a photographer from Mount Juliet! We had a great time at the studio talking about business, relationships, photography, and how to balance all of those things while making them all truly successful. We love getting the chance to pour into other photographers and share those things that have helped us get to where we are today, and every time we do something like this, we end up learning a ton of things ourselves from those who we meet. We are all in a constant state of learning and growing into not only better business owners and photographers, but people as well. Courtney is amazing and has a real heart for her family first which is super important in this business. She also loves what she does and has been killing it already in only her first year of business and we cant’ wait to see now where she takes her business!  Courtney, you rock! Thanks for hanging out with us and we can’t wait to see you at our Shooting & Post workshop!! If you are a seasoned photographer who has a desire to take your business to the next level, want to get a great jump-start in your new business and don’t know where to start, or have a business that runs you, instead of you running your business, then check out one of our mentoring sessions HERE... Read More

Friday Fun – Fort Building Adventures with Camera Equipment

Earlier this week at 11pm at night we found ourselves bored. Bored our of our minds. We had caught up on all of our TV shows on Hulu.com, had watched all of our movies (our favorite way of vegging after a hard working day), didn’t feel like doing a puzzle, playing a game, making food (it was after 11…) … so what to do? Instead of just going to bed like normal people do, my brilliant husband had the idea to make an awesome, engineering feet of inhuman proportions super fort! When in the world was the last time I built a fort?  When I was a kid?  Babysitting as a teenager?  Regardless, it was a GENIUS idea!  We headed into the bedroom grabbing blankets and sheets and then Zach headed to our office using his creative genius picking out camera gear that would serve us well in our fort building adventures. 20 minutes later, there was little to no floor space in our living room and we had ourselves a killer fort (Christmas lights and all) and a bed fit for a King and Queen to sleep on…. ok, it was a thick airmattress with blankets and a down comforter, but if royalty were roughing it I can image this is what it might be like. Soooooo, with no further ado – we present to you our super fort!! We realized the cool thing about being photographers is we had great equipment that serves well in building a killer fort!!  So for those photographers out there who want some camera equipment fort building tips, this part is for... Read More

Nashville Photography Workshops Launched!!

You all have been anxiously waiting, so wait no further!  The IN-CAMERA photography workshops have once again been launched in Nashville, TN and this time with a BRAND NEW class, IN-CAMERA: Light 2!! Everyone signed up for our newsletter was able to begin registration yesterday and the seats are selling lighting fast! To view the brand spankin new website and to Register, CLICK HERE or on the below image. These workshops will cover not only how we are able to achieve the look of our images without the aid of Photoshop, but our Light workshop will cover on location one light strobe skills so you can nail some shots like the ones below taken at our Southern California workshops! Due to the demand, we have ADDED for the first time ever  an additional lighting class called IN-CAMERA: Light II.  This class will be more extensive and take lighting to the NEXT level. We will cover on-location multiple strobe techniques, and equip you with reception lighting techniques and skills that will make your images stand out.  Sometimes dark lit receptions are the biggest challenge to a photographer (or how about those end of the evening exit shots with NO light and everyone blowing bubbles?…) and we will equip you with the knowledge to rock a reception so that you have no problems handling any lighting situation ever again. We are also going to show you how to shoot those tricky detail shots fast and efficiently so that they look like they are right out of an ad. Why do we do these workshops? Because we love photographers and love business... Read More

Nashville Wedding Photography with the amazing Marc & Alex!!

We had the awesome privilege of shooting for Marc & Alex recently and even though it was one of the coldest days we have shot in (22 degrees!), we all had an absolute blast with these guys! The wedding was at Belle Meade Plantation and everything went off without a hitch! Marc is a bad to the bone director out in in L.A. (<— click on the link to view some of his killer work) and sought us out because he was drawn to the lighting side of what we do (he definitely knows his lighting!) and wanted it done right when it came to his wedding. We love it when we get to shoot couples who have a real eye for photography it’s a big priority for them on their wedding. These guys are exactly our type of client and it was fun spending the wedding day with them and shooting! To sign up and view all of their wedding images once available online, click here!! Check out the shots from the day below!! Marc & Alex decided to see each other before the ceremony so we set up a private moment for their first look. This was great because we then had tons of time to shoot some awesome shots of these two! Just before the ceremony,  Marc & Alex wanted some time with grandma and grandpa. They were sooo sweet!! Marc & Alex had a really cool Jewish influenced wedding ceremony.  The Rabbi conducted the ceremony in a really unique way and explained the how’s and why’s of the Jewish wedding traditions.  It was very personal... Read More

Friday Fun – A Little Nashville Wedding Vendor Married Love :)

On January 21st, we had our married wedding vendors get-together and it was a blast (literally)!!!  With Laser Tag and Food, we had over 38 people come, and it was a crazy time of shooting each other, food, and talking until late into the night :) We began by chatting our heads off (trying desperately hard to avoid talking about business :) and then the games began!!  It was every man for him/herself and there were so many people we had to split up into two game playing groups.  Afterwords, we all made our way over to Maniac’s to get our grub on.  We ate and talked, and then even after the restaurant, we all were talking outside for quite some time!  lol.  It was a great time of fellowship and fun and meeting new people and forging new friendships with others.  Love it! MARK YOUR CALENDARS: Thursday, March 18th is our next hangout!  Stay tuned for more info :) FRONT ROW – L to R Lori & husband Jason (Nashville Cake Artist, Crumb de la Crumb) Tiffany (photographer) and husband Jonathan Kristine (photographer) and husband Cliff Jennifer (wedding videographer, Dynamic Video 7) and husband Christian Above their heads is Sarah Maria (Nashville custom clothing designer) and fiance Grant BACK ROW – L to R Jonathan & Blakley (Photographers) Mandy Whitley (Photographer) and husband, David Amy McNeil (Graphic designer including wedding invitations, 4th Leaf Design Studio) Heather & Eugene (Wedding Videographers) Hillary (Wedding Planner, Your Day Fairy Tales) & fiance James Rebecca (Wedding Cake Design) & hubby David & Tammy (Photographers) Jessica Rai (Photographer) and hubby Brett Kristen Steele... Read More

We Would Love Your Vote!

We were so honored to find out yesterday by someone tweeting that out of over 200 entries, we made the top 25 for Show It‘s Best of 2009 Photographer of the Year!  We are honored and super thrilled!  There are so many great photographers in the running not only for the category we are in, but in the other categories as well.  Sooooooo, now the polls are open and the voting begins! If you choose to accept this challenge…. it would be awesome!! CLICK HERE to submit your vote on Facebook for us or click on the image below! For those who are unfamiliar with ShowIt Sites, you are missing out BIG time!!   Show It Sites is a simple drag and drop platform for you to design your own sharp looking website and update and change things at ANY point.  It has rocked our world and we cannot recommend it enough for photographers, venues, videographers, etc!  Some other local vendors who have Show It sites are killer Nashville wedding videography team – 2Duce2, as well as Williamson County Weddings & Events, just to name a few!  The options are absolutly ENDless with Show It and you will never have your site looking like someone elses.  You can be totally unique and bring in your own personality and do WHATever you want.  It’s great :) Thanks for your vote!  We will shake hands and kiss the babies after... Read More