I LOVE print competition! I usually am not a competitive person by nature, but for some reason print competition is different. I am not competitive in the way that I want to beat everyone else, but rather a personal goal… I want to do well. I love to watch print competition, and hear what the judges say about the prints. I feel it has really helped me grow as a photographer. I have been entering print competition for the last 4 years. Again this year I entered the International Print Competition from Professional Photographer of America. Yesterday they published the results of the competition. I had 3 (out of 4 that I entered) prints that were accepted (merited) and one that was accepted into the Loan Collection! I was THRILLED with the results! They haven’t released all the statistics yet of how many prints were entered and accepted… but last year there were over 4300 prints entered. about 30% were accepted, with the top 12% making it to the loan collection. They will be on display in January next year at the Imaging USA convention in San Antonio TX. Here are the two of mine that were accepted (merited)…
And this is the one that was accepted into the Loan Collection!
Everyone wants tips for their wedding day, don’t they? Quite often I have brides who ask me questions on wedding day beauty! So, I thought I would share a few quick tips here!
1. Pamper yourself with professional hair and makeup! One thing that ALL brides love is to be beautiful on their wedding day. No matter how low-maintenance you may be, you should consider hiring professional hair and makeup artists to help you look your best on the big day. Experienced hair and makeup people know just how to emphasize your very best features so your ready for your close up picture time.
2. Don’t do any extra tanning. Not only is it bad for you, but getting too dark of a tan can look unnatural in your wedding portraits. Spray tans and self tanning lotion can also go horribly wrong! Nothing is worse than those orange streaks for your perfect day!
3. Don’t get your hair cut or colored, get a facial, or eyebrow wax less than 2 days before the wedding. Make sure you get them done at least one to two weeks before the wedding, so that if there are any “oopsies” you have time to get them fixed!
4. Make sure you are getting plenty to eat and drink the week of your wedding. Don’t try to starve yourself to loose those few extra pounds. Make sure you drink plenty of water, so you don’t get dehydrated! It will help your skin look beautiful, and keep you from passing out on your wedding day!
5. Make an emergency kit for the wedding day. Items to include: make up, scissors, a laundry pen, deodorant, Band-Aids, tissues, nail clippers and file, sanitary supplies, sewing kit, tooth brush and tooth paste, wipes, bobby pins, hair spray, extra stockings, straws (for drinking without messing up lipstick) safety pins and anything else you can think of!
Why do so many brides opt for a first look? Let me share with you why!
Back in the days of arranged marriages, brides and grooms were not allowed to see each other before the wedding at all. This was so the groom wouldn’t back out of the wedding if he found the bride unattractive! That tradition turned into the superstition that seeing each other before the wedding was bad luck. Now, more and more brides and grooms are taking control of their special day! They are getting rid of that tradition, so they can have AMAZING wedding portraits! Scheduling time before the ceremony gives us the time we need for the most important photographs of the day… the portraits of the bride and groom!
Here is how it works: The bride and groom will get ready separately, just like “normal”. When both are ready, we will take you to a predetermined place for your first look. While the bride and groom lay eyes on each other for the first time, we blend into the background and capture every look, every kiss, every tear. These images will be your most cherished from the day. You will still have that special moment of seeing each other for the “first time”. Bad luck? I don’t think so!
Now you can have all the time you would like for the most important photographs of the day. We will have plenty of time for those fun, romantic, and creative photographs that you have always dreamed of! There will be no rushing, no waiting guests, no missed cocktail hour. The best part of a couple seeing each other before the ceremony is that it lends to a much smoother layout for family portraits and cocktail hour. By capturing formal photos before the ceremony, it frees the family and bridal party to mingle, catch up with out of town guests, and simply enjoy the mood of the day. Some couples opt to spend cocktail hour with their guests as their time is so limited during the reception, or some opt to enjoy some time alone or celebrating with the wedding party in the limo.
I love it when a bride and groom choose to see each other before the ceremony. But, more than anything, I want my brides to be happy. I simply explain options because I know they’ll make an educated decision. Often times brides think there are rules to weddings (Cannot see groom before hand, Must throw garter, Cannot be seen as a couple until the Grand Entrance), but I believe there should only be one rule: Do What Makes You Happy.
Here are some First look images: