Different Kinds of Headshots– Corporate Photographer, Jacksonville

Are you needing head shots of your employees or maybe all the executives in your company? Most companies need updated portraits, but often aren’t sure exactly what they need.

I did a session with Michael recently to update some business portraits for him and I thought I would share a couple of variations and their uses.

The above two shots are very common requests.

The left image is what I do for many companies who just need something quick for each employee. These types of shots are typically great for email signatures, ID badges, etc. It might also get used in casual usages and ads.

A horizontal head and shoulders is also a popular option for this type of headshot. 

I saw the above image on Pinterest. I wish I knew who created it. But it has some interesting information to think about as well for a standard headshot.

Three-Quarter Length Stance

The right is a little more formal and it crops down to about the waist. Not only does his outfit imply it’s a little more formal, but also because it shows more of his body. These types of portraits are more ideal for managers, relators, job seekers, etc. If you want an employee to stand out a little more, this option might be good.

Seated

The above example doesn’t show the seated example as good as say the next image, but he is seated. I like how it pulls him forward and makes him feel more inviting.

Seated poses definitely feel more warm and personable. They also usually give the person somewhere to put their hands, something to do.

However, it’s not appropriate for all portraits, if it’s done wrong it can make the person look bigger or frumpy in the mid section.

Full body

Occasionally, I get a request for a full body. And Michael had on red shoes, so I HAD to include those as it shows off part of his personality.

For executives and owners of a company, this is can be a good option. It can also be cropped in at waist level for a secondary look or use. These might be used for an annual report, or for a full portrait for the wall.

Environmental Portraits

There’s an image up a little higher where you can see a window behind Michael. That’s another “environmental” type portrait.

These can be done in your office, outside or on location somewhere. They help to show off the personality of you and your business.

For realtors this might mean near a house. The brick wall is popular.

A lawyer might use a library, or their desk.

If your office has great big windows or great architecture, those are all great places for this type of shot.

These usually are a little more custom and aren’t as ideal for name tags, or a large company with a 1,000 employees.

These are often used for formal portraits or prints to hang on the wall since they often have that extra bit of color or personality.

ABOUT

Christy Whitehead photography has travelled all over the US photographing employees and executives for news publications as well as internal use (uniform manuals, websites, etc). She has photographed companies that have one employee as well as those with multiple locations and 1,500 employees.

Email her to set up your own custom quote.

 

Featured Wedding Photographer: The Copper Lens

I recently photographed Susannah Moore, of The Copper Lens, creating some new headshots for her and wanted to share those photos and a little about her and her business.

When photographing a business owner, I like to take a look at their brand–usually their website. and see what their style is. Is it very traditional or do they have a different vibe? Usually it helps me pick out a color pallet to use.

For Susannah, her colors were very light and airy. She likes pinks and coppers.

I also try to do one look that is slightly different. Sometimes the lighting is more moody or the colors may not fit quite with their brand. For Susannah, when she came in she was wearing this cute little red dress with blue flowers and a denim jacket. So I pulled a blue background and started her with a one light headshot, creating a little more dramatic shadows and making a little more rich of an image.

Susannah has been in business for 3.5 years and has a great look. Her brand is very pulled together.

I got my start to photography when I owned a women’s boutique. I learned to shoot by taking photos of the clothing on models and slowly began creating styled look books each centered around a certain theme. I quickly learned that the creative side of the business and the photography was my favorite part.

Friends began asking me to capture all their special moments and occasions and as I began to dabble in photographing outside of fashion, I fell in love.

I decided to close shop and pursue photography full time. After a year of shooting a little bit of everything to get my feet wet, I found my passion in couples. Weddings, engagements, anniversaries, elopements, or even just because photos of two people in love is where my heart still lies today.

What drew you to photography?

Originally, it was the joy of creating something and also capturing a moment and being able to re-live it over and over again. I love putting things together to create something out of nothing but I also love the joy of just creating. Photography is art and art is a way of expressing yourself or your subjects. It’s always changing and I think I love that most of all.
How would you describe your style? Bright, Romantic and joyful! I love pretty light, pastels & people in love! You just can’t go wrong with that combination.

How did you come up with the name of your business?

I knew I wanted something more creative than just my name for a business name. I actually hired an incredibly business branding strategist to help me come up with the name! When I told her my favorite color was copper she put it all together for me! I absolutely love it.


Anything really funny ever happen while you were shooting?

Every time. I love to be active during sessions and will do anything to help my clients feel comfortable so they can be themselves. I hope every session has at least one moment that we can all look back on and laugh.

Other fun stuff:

What’s your favorite food? Potatoes. You can seriously cook them 100 different ways and they are all delicious! 
Favorite dessert? Cheesecake
Favorite restaurant? Any Hibachi/Sushi
Favorite place to hang out in Jacksonville? If Im being honest, my house! I am such a homebody and introverted. I could spend all day just chilling on the sofa watching Netflix!
What’s your favorite movie? Dirty Dancing

 

And some of her work:

Check out The Copper Lens:

IG: @thecopperlens
www.thecopperlens.com

Featured Guest: Sam Stitchberry with Ghost Tours of St. Augustine!

I was recently doing headshots for Saint Augustine based Samantha Stitchberry when I asked her where she works, she told me she had three jobs! One of those being a ghost tour guide in St. Augustine! (Oh and she works on vintage costumes and fixes them.)  I had to know more…

How did you get your start?

I started by answering a Craigslist ad! I was looking for a new job and I thought being a Ghost Host sounded like great fun!

What drew you to costumes and the ghost tours?

I grew up in theatre and I always loved playing in the costume closet. It was filled with clothing that I would never be able to wear in my everyday life. I knew that downtown tour guides usually had to dress up in some sort of period costume so I was even more excited about the job!

Anything really funny ever happen while you were out giving a tour?

Oh for sure. I get weird things almost every night. Last week I was interrupted by a guy in a pedicab, playing bagpipes. It was very weird but kind of impressive.

How about scary or crazy?

I always love when people are able to get a picture of a ghost on camera. James at the Tolomato cemetery has been very active and it’s a nice way for people to get that ghostly chill.

How long have you been doing the ghost tours?

8 months

What is your favorite thing to do around Jacksonville and St. Augustine?

The beach is always great but I love going to the pirate museum in St. Augustine. It’s so interactive.

When your family comes to town, what is something you guys always have to do while they are in town?

My parents actually live here! We like going out and trying new restaurants.

What’s your favorite movie?

Either Anastasia, Ratatouille, or Harry Potter. I can never pick. They are all very nostalgic

What’s your favorite song?

Currently Necromancer’s Lullaby by Bearfoot Monty. I love the work put into the lyrics. It’s haunting and beautiful.

What’s something you can’t live without (besides your loved ones)?

If my cat Pepper doesn’t count, I would have to say my IPad and planner. My entire life is on both of those things. I do a lot of editing on my iPad and I just love the convenience.

What’s your current obsession?

Kayla Nicholson Youtube video. She has a beautiful aesthetic. They have really been making me consider making some videos myself

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Doing a job I love in a small little beachfront property, surrounded by a variety of animals.

Favorite dessert?

Fruit salad. I know it’s healthier, but it’s something I will never turn down.

Favorite restaurant?

Anywhere that makes good Japanese food!

Find her on Instagram.

I don’t know about you, but I want to do a ghost tour now! Go ask for Sam over at Ghost Tours of St. Augustine.

Wedding Photographer Feature: The Veil Wedding Photography

Since I have stopped doing wedding photography, I have decided to partner up with some other wedding photographers in the area so that you know where to go! Every photographer has a different style, whether it’s light and airy to dark and moody. Some use a lot of off camera flash, others don’t use that at all.

Today, I’m featuring The Veil Wedding Photography, owned by Amanda and Landon Raulerson.

I’m not going to lie, their style is super consistent in it’s editing style (which is DEF what you want from a photographer) and light and airy.

Let me preface this, with a story about how I met them.

A couple of years ago when I got this studio space, I had A LOT of work to do to make it what it is. I made a call out on Facebook looking for some help to lay flooring and paint the walls. 2,400 sf is a lot of work and it was killing me to get it opened in time.

It was Amanda’s birthday and she showed up with her husband and kids in tow late that evening. They worked for hours. And neither one of them complained at all! They both smiled and just helped.

I appreciated all their help so much. Especially from other photographers in our area that did NOT have to help, especially since they weren’t being paid and I was their competition!

For that, I have always been eternally grateful to them. Some people act nice and genuine and then there are people who actually ARE that way.

So onto their story:

Landon retired from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office to fulfill this dream

Here’s some info about them.

How long have you been in business? 6 years

How did you get your start?

We picked up a camera with plans of having a hobby to do together. I wish I had some cool story of how we have always loved photography, but the truth is this journey was never suppose to be a business, that was an unexpected blessing we received.

What drew you to photography?

We were looking for a hobby to do together. I (Amanda) had been a stay at home mother for 7 years and wanted something to get me out of the house more. Landon had the idea of photography. The rest is history.

How would you describe your style?

Simplistic, Elegant, Timeless

What has been the hardest part about working with someone else in your company?
The first few months after Landon quite his job as a correctional officer and began working with me from home full time was interesting (for a lack of a better word lol.), we had been married 7 years already and I was use to him going to work while I took care of the kids and home. To have him home every day, to be with each other constantly, it was like we had to learn each other in a whole new way. It was a learning experience.

We had to learn how to balance marriage, parenthood, and being coworkers, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. This business takes us both to run. His amazing talent, my business and social skills. We really excel in different areas and together make up a wonderful team.

Do you guys ever disagree on how things should be done?

Ummm.. heck yes! LOL! I’m a passionate person. When I decide to do something I jump in head first. Landon on the other hand is the voice of reason. He thinks everything through and makes the most logical decision. Sometimes being passionate is a good thing, but there are times I need him to bring me back to reality lol. So there are many times we disagree how situations should be handled. But we never handle them without first agreeing together on a solution.

 

How did you come up with the name of your business?

Interesting fact. Most people believes the name “The Veil” comes from a wedding veil. Actually that’s not entirely true. When we first started the name of our business was Amanda Jayne Photography. We had planned for me to be the main shooter.

It wasn’t until we both realized where our strengths were in our business that we realized Landon was actually the main photographer role and I was the second shooter and handled the every day running of the business.

When Landon came on to work full time with me I decided it only made sense to change the name of the business to something we both could be represented by, instead of the business being named after me.

We knew of course we wanted our industry to be represented in our name, but we also decided we wanted our faith to be represented. Landon and I are Christians and truly believe we have succeeded simply because of God’s grace.   We came across this bible verse and knew immediately “The Veil” would be a part of our name: Matthew 27:51 “then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split.”

Anything really funny ever happen while you were shooting?

All the time. But if I’m honest the thing me and my couples laugh the most at is when Landon is demonstrating to the bride how to pose for a photo. Watching him play the bride’s role always cracks us up. I really need to make a video of his moves lol.

What is a piece of advice you can give to newbies?

Never give up. Your going to get discouraged, or think your not good enough, or go through some ups and downs. We have all been there, but if you can push through those trials the reward is wonderful. You will meet the most amazing people and share in some of the greatest moments of their lives. It’s not a race it’s a marathon. Keep working at your craft, keep your head up, and the time will come that you look back and feel proud of the journey you’ve been on.

What’s your current obsession?

Obsession? Wow! We are parents of 3 Kids. It’s normally all about them lol. Hmmm.. I guess it’s Netflix. I know Netflix has been around a while now, but we didn’t jump on the band wagon until last year. We work so much and when we aren’t working we are being parents, so we have found enjoyment in binge watching Series on Netflix once the kids are asleep. First we went through The Office, then Friends. We enjoy not having to think and just laugh together for a few hours at night. Man we are getting old and boring lol.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 
In 5 years I see us expanding our business. We have already began to expand The Veil but I see more growth opportunities ahead. I’d like our business to be a career option for our children should they choose it when they become adults. We want them to follow their own dreams, but should their dreams be this industry we would like a solid foundation set.

(Amanda recently launched her own company to do wedding planning.)

What’s your favorite food?
This is hard. I’m a food lover. Though I will say Landon has 2 meals he makes that I think are better than anything I’ve ever eaten: Cajun Pasta and Italian Chicken Soup. He really could have chosen to be a chef, the man can cook!

Favorite dessert?
We both have a love for the French Pantry’s Wedding Cake. That cake is amazing.

Favorite restaurant?
We have several. Though our tops favorites right now would be Bentos, The Burrito Gallery,   Timoti’s, and Chuys.

Favorite place to hang out in Jacksonville?
Wedding venues. Is that an option? Because on weekends that’s pretty much where you can find us. On a serious note we have started really loving beach trips.

What is your favorite thing to do around Jacksonville?

We have found a love as a family for searching for sharks teeth. We enjoy all going to the beach and searching for them. Yesterday we found four in one trip. It excites the kids, but poor Landon has yet to find one.

My son felt bad for him and brought a sharks tooth from home to place in front of Landon so he would see it and get excited he found a sharks tooth. Sadly Landon is so bad at it he can’t find sharks teeth we put right in front of him lol. But then again he is pretty much good at everything else, so we were shocked to find one thing he wasn’t good at.

What’s your favorite movie?
I would have to say A Walk To Remember. It is the movie we were watching when we had our first kiss. It will forever be my favorite.

What’s your favorite song?
I’ll Be- Edwin McCain. It’s our song.

Follow them here:

 IG:@theveilweddingphotography
 www.theveilweddingphotography.com

Featured Vendor: Sweets by Staci Cakes

I met Staci Glover several years ago. She’s done quite a few smash cakes for me over the years for the first birthday photo sessions I do in studio. So today I’m featuring her!

Official business name: Sweets By Staci

How long have you been in business? 5 years

Where are you located? On the Northside of town. (However, she will deliver your cake to the studio!)

How did you get your start?

It was a lot of trial and error and using my friends and family as guinea pigs. YouTube and Pinterest helped A LOT!

What drew you to make cakes? 

I went to a local grocery store bakery to order my son’s first birthday cake. Being a fairly young mother, I couldn’t justify spending the amount they were asking on the cake I wanted so I decided to take a stab at it. I always loved to bake, even as a kid, but making his cake made me realize that maybe there was something a little more there so I started making cakes for friends and family and now here I am.

What’s probably your most favorite cake you’ve ever made?

That’s a tough one! There’s multiple that I love for different reasons. I would have to say either the blue teapot or a the dream catcher cake. 

How about craziest?

The tequila in the ice bucket. That took FOREVER!

Anything crazy ever happen while making or delivering a cake?

Nothing really crazy. I had a cupcake catastrophe once where I was driving down my road and a guy towing a trailer all of a sudden pulled out in front of me. I had to slam on my brakes and cupcakes went flying. Ironic thing is that they were flamingo cupcakes. I ended up being late because I had to go home and fix all of them. 

What’s your favorite flavor? Or do you hate cake now?

Amazingly enough I do not hate cake. My favorite cake is either a lemon cake with lemon curd (that sounds amazing!) or a coffee infused chocolate cake with a chocolate ganache filling. 

Do you prefer icing or fondant?

Icing for eating but fondant for decorating.

How would you describe your style?

Pretty laid back and casual. I’m a mommy of 5, I don’t have time to get all prettied up all the time. LOL

How did you come up with the name of your business?

My original name was taken so I asked friends and family what they thought would be sound good. Then I held a voting on facebook of who thought what name would be best out of all of the ones given to me.

What is a piece of advice you can give to newbies?

Know your worth and don’t budge on your morals. Always show your clientele how much you appreciate them because without them you are nothing.

What’s something you can’t live without (besides your loved ones)?

My cell phone/laptop. It’s how I keep in touch with practically everyone and keep track of everything.

What is your favorite thing to do around Jacksonville?

Anywhere the kiddos and I can go hang out. They love to explore new places and usually we hit up the local preserves and plantations. Their favorite right now is Bird Island. 

When your family comes to town, what is something you guys always have to do while they are in town?

Go get sushi! 

What’s your favorite movie?

Top Gun.

What’s your favorite song?

My Wish – Rascall Flatts. I cry every time I listen to it because it reminds me of my children and believe it or not God Bless the USA by Lee Greenwood. 

What’s your current obsession?

My skin. I’ve aged a lot in the last 5+ years. 

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Hopefully with a store front and on Cake Wars!

What’s your favorite food?

I love too many to list but I could always go for sushi, pizza and of course fried chicken!

Favorite dessert?

A hot brownie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and chocolate drizzle.

Favorite restaurant?

European Street.

Favorite place to hang out in Jacksonville?

I don’t hang out anywhere except church and home!

 

Instagram: www.instagram.com/sweetsbystaci

Facebook: www.facebook.com/sweetsbystaci

Website: http://stacilglover.wixsite.com/sweetsbystaci

Vendor Feature: Unicorn Tea Party Jax

We recently did a portrait session with a bunch of little girls dressed up like princesses (dresses are available to borrow upon request from the studio!) and a unicorn. 

For a little fun this week, we’re interviewing Luna, our little unicorn.

My name is Luna the Unicorn and I am 11 months old and only 30” tall. While horses grow until they are 4 years old , I’m a miniature unicorn and am nearly done growing , even before my first birthday! 

 I am owned by Miss Kate and live with my best friend , a Doberman dog named Lyla. Miss Kate named me Luna because my silver dapples make me look like the moon and Luna is the Latin word for moon.  Which I guess makes me a Lunacorn! While most people will think all unicorns should be big and white , I love the fact that I am different by being small and silver. I have a long white mane and tail though , and little girls just love to brush and braid it! 

Miss Kate thinks I’m too cute to keep all to herself , so she thought that she would like to do animal therapy work by taking me to hospitals and nursing homes. Unfortunately , I am still too young. Therapy animals are required to be older and more experienced working in public , so Miss Kate came up with idea to start allowing me to attend birthday parties and posing as a model in order to meet the requirements for future therapy work. Miss Kate also practices with me at home. She has looked very silly trying to scare me with loud sounds and weird sights , but I always get a treat at the end so I don’t mind! 

To keep me pretty for birthday parties and photos, I have to get a regular haircut. So while I look beautiful, I am no longer able to be outdoors when it gets really cold. On mildly cold nights I sleep in my stable with a mini horse blanket that fits me like a coat. But on really cold nights Miss Kate lets me sleep in the house! You read it right, I sleep in the house. Miss Kate builds a little pen in her parlor and makes me a soft bed out of hay. I don’t cause any trouble at all and go right to sleep! 

I love going for rides in the truck! I am no bigger than a large dog, so I fit in the backseat of Miss Kate’s truck just fine. Even though the windows are tinted, people can somehow always see me inside! So if someone sees me at a stop light, Miss Kate will roll down the window so I can say hello. You should see the smiles when someone realizes a tiny unicorn wants to say HI! 

I just started my career as a Birthday Party VIP guest, and I must say, I LOVE IT! I get plenty of attention at home, but nothing compares to getting lots of hugs, kisses, and pretty hairdos from the children at a party. Even adults like to join in the fun! I also get to have my picture taken…..a lot. Now that’s what I really like! 

 I really want to be a model. I love getting washed and brushed and camera ready. I like seeing the girls in their pretty dresses posing for the camera. I know that meeting me will be a memory they will never forget, and I will never forget them either! I don’t have any children in my life, so the children I meet while I am working  fill my days with smiles, giggles, and love. And that makes me one happy unicorn. 

Want to book your own unicorn session with Luna?

We hope to book her again soon. Email Christy to let her know you want info!

Social Media Links:

You can find Luna on Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/unicornteapartyjax/

And Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/unicorn.tea.party.jax/

Featured: Ashley Morton Photography

I met Ashley Morton about a year or so ago and we hit it off fairly quickly. I recently did some headshots for her and I wanted to feature her business on my blog. She’s a photographer, a military spouse and a mom.

Every photographer has their own specialties and styles. Ashley doesn’t photograph newborns and she prefers a more story telling approach to photography, where as I’m more traditional.

How long have you been in business?

I officially launched my photography business 6 months after moving to Jacksonville and I’m going on my second full year in business.  
How did you get your start?

Having a child was the catalyst for my photography passion but I actually got my start through blogging. In blogging, it’s crucial to have engaging and interesting images in your content, especially when partnering with brands. So I found myself working hard to better my photography for work, which spilled over to my kids and the here I am today!
What do you photograph?

I specialize in families, engagement and weddings.
How do you define your style?

In my photography I combine traditional portraiture with documentary and lifestyle work. My images are vibrant in color but lean toward the light and airy.

What drew you to lifestyle photography?

I’m passionate about capturing children as they are and documenting the moments and relationships that matter in our lives. I felt like traditional portraiture doesn’t leave a lot of room for this story telling experience and that’s what drew me to lifestyle photography. I didn’t realize it at the time but beginning my photography journey was the culmination of my life’s passions: I’m a storyteller, a historian, a joy seeker. and a travel addict. Photography allows me to do & be all of those things. I believe in love & in family. I believe in documenting experiences today so that one day our grandchildren will open old & worn photo albums to learn about the history of people they love and where they came from.

What is a piece of advice you can give to newbies?

Pick up your camera every day, for yourself and for your business. Try everything. You will never know what genre or style is going to speak to your heart.

What’s something you can’t live without (besides your loved ones)?

Soda. I’m an addict and I’m pretty sure it’s running thru my veins. I also can’t live without travel. Which sounds so cliché but it keeps my life from feeling stagnant – which is why my family jokes that I was made to be a military spouse. I’m always up for the next adventure.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?|

We’re in the military so it’s almost impossible to tell but I’m hoping someplace overseas! I’m pushing hard for us to get stationed over there.

What’s your favorite food?

I’m a pasta addict. Actually, give me all the carbs. Bread, pasta, and pizza for days.

Favorite dessert?

My favorite dessert is homemade strawberry rhubarb pie but when I can’t get that I’ll settle for Key Lime Pie at Poe’s Tavern or the Cheesecake at Maggianos.

Favorite restaurant?

That’s so tough! Jacksonville has so many great options. The last place we visited was Hawkers, it’s never a bad choice!

Favorite place to hang out in Jacksonville?

We love bike riding at Hanna Park and my favorite beach is Big Talbot.

What is your favorite thing to do around Jacksonville?

Definitely beach days. We live a mile from the beach and I try to get down there as often as possible. I grew up in a state where it’s cold about 8 months out of the year so I try to take advantage of living in Florida.

When your family comes to town, what is something you guys always have to do while they are in town?

First, we always take them to Poe’s and then head around the corner to Whit’s Frozen Custard. It’s becoming a tradition that on their first visit we take them to Poe’s. Then they request to come back each time.

What’s your favorite movie?

Bridesmaids is always my first thought when I get asked this. I’m a HUGE Melissa McCarthy fan. But I’m also a big fan of 80s coming of age movies.

What’s your favorite song?

I grew up on country music but right now I’m loving on Ed Sheeran and almost everything he does. It’s a toss up between Galway Girl by Ed Sheeran or Marry Me by Thomas Rhett.

You’re a military family. Where are you from originally?

My husband and I grew up, got married, bought our first home and had our first child in Michigan. It’s still my favorite place on earth during the summer months and we go back every year. But I hate it the other 9 months of the year, which is one of the reasons we joined the military and moved to Florida! We just celebrated the 3 year anniversary of our move to Jacksonville and we love this city so much. It’s definitely a place we see ourselves coming back to once we’ve seen some more of the world.

What’s the biggest difference between your hometown and here? Any surprises?

The difference between our hometown and Jacksonville is night and day. I grew up in a town of less than 3,000. There was no such thing as delivery. The closest major retail store was a good 20 minute drive and getting to the mall involved a day trip. Needless to say I’ve fallen in love with all the little luxuries that come with living in a major city and I don’t think I could ever go back!

And Ashley was kind enough to send me this as well. So if you’re wondering about the headshot experience:

Having my headshots done with Christy was an awesome experience. As a photographer, I’m so often behind the lens that I forget what it’s like to be in front of it. Especially because when I do hand my camera over to someone to snap a photo, it’s just never the same! Needless to say, I was so nervous showing up for my headshots. Especially because I have some insecurities (don’t we all)? But Christy was great about addressing my issues head on and posing me in the most flattering angles. I haven’t got to see all of the images yet but the sneak peek I did see took away all of my worries!

 

You can find Ashley here:

http://www.ashleymorton.com

http://www.instagram.com/ashleymortonphotography
https://www.facebook.com/AshleyMortonPhotography/

 

Studio Announcement: Wedding Photography

I’ve been doing wedding photography in the Jacksonville area for probably 15+ years. I started my career as a journalist (both writer and photographer) and had so many people ask me to photograph their families and weddings that I eventually started doing that full time.

However, in the last year or so, I’ve been changing how I run my business and what I focus on. And I really love working in the studio with families and babies.

And with that, I am saying goodbye to weddings.

Don’t get me wrong, if the right wedding came along, I might do one every year or so, but for the most part, I’m done.

This industry has changed so much since I started. Not just from film to digital (yeah, I remember taking 20 rolls to get developed from a wedding!) but also the vendors and how they react to each other. Social media has turned grown adults into drama llamas.

Not only am I tired of giving up all my weekends away from my family, not going to funerals, and aching for days after, I’m also tired of the drama that goes on in the wedding industry. And it’s not just here. It’s everywhere.

But there are people who make this industry great. Who are what they seem to be and are loyal. And those are the types of people I want brides to use!

One of the things I always recommended to my brides was to get a wedding planner. Not a venue coordinator (99% of the time they are only there until you walk down the aisle and they don’t help you with any issues that don’t involve their venue), but a REAL wedding planner.

Someone who, when the crap hits the fan, can save your day. Tuxedo come up missing? Caterer wrote down the wrong date and now you don’t have food? Zipper on wedding dress or bridesmaids gown breaks and won’t zip up? Yep, this stuff happens. And all of it has happened to Tanya Hendricks over at Southern Charm Events.

(The first headshot of many I did for Tanya, 9 years ago.)

I met Tanya about 10 years ago maybe. With vendors, you’re always trying to make a connection, build off each other, I’ll help you, you help me. Most promise it, but it never happens. The relationship is always one sided. Tanya and I hit it off immediately. Maybe it was our similar backgrounds, but ultimately it was the fact we were loyal and did help each other out.

This is a rare quality for a vendor in any city. But when you meet someone like that you stick with them.

Tanya was the only wedding planner in this city who made the effort with me and for that I have to commend her. I would think as a bride, you’d want a planner that is loyal and is a friend and is genuinely concerned about you.

So to Tanya, I say, THANK YOU. Thank you for showing me that not all vendors are only concerned about themselves and say one thing and do another. I hope I have helped you out as much as you have helped me.

(The first of several headshots I did of Susan Kass, over the years.)

When I met Tanya, she also introduced me to Susan Kass, with A Fantasy in Flowers. We haven’t worked together as much as we used to, but I appreciated her faith in me early on and how kind her words were about me to other vendors. I can only hope I helped her as much as she helped me. BTW, her staff is fantastic. Super sweet and so genuine.

So with that, I hope to see all my past brides and their new babies in the studio. I love photographing newborns and families.

I will be making recommendations for wedding photographers in the area in upcoming blog posts, so stay on the look out!

Featured Vendor: Tanisha Campbell of Shades, Colors & Coils

I met Tanisha recently when she inquired about some product photography. When she came in, I immediately liked her. Not only was she young, smart, super sweet and driven, but she impressed me with what she was doing with her business.

She’s only been in business for 11 months, but her website looks professional and she was seeking out professional photographers to make sure her products looked right for her website. She was def. on the right track!

Tanisha is only 25, and not only is this her first business venture, but she’s also an active member of the military. I had to know more!

Where can people buy your products at?

Online (www.shadescolorscoils.com). Etsy is coming soon!

How did you get your start?

It actually all started on a cruise ship. I was on a cruise with my best friend and I wasn’t have the “perfect” hair day on the cruise due to the products that I was using on my hair. So the gears started turning and I decided to start thinking about the hair products I needed and then I started thinking of names for the products. Once the cruise was over and I got back to Jacksonville I went to a health store called “Grass Roots” and I began to purchase ingredients to mix to start making shampoo! And that’s how it all began.

My brand Shades, Colors, & Coils, LLC was built off diversity and individuality. I don’t want my brand to be “JUST” portrayed as a hair care line. I want everyone to recognize that this brand is based off confidence, diversity, and individuality from all walks of life! Whether you have a lot of hair or a little bit of hair or whether you’re a man or woman this brand is here for you! 

How did you come up with the name of your business?

I wanted a name that would help reflect people’s diversity and individuality. I wanted a name that everyone could be apart of. My cousin Kymeshia also played a big part with helping with the name and tying everything together. Shades- (Means to be comfortable with the color of your skin no matter how light you are or how dark you are! Be comfortable and confident in your skin! Colors- (No matter what color, race religion, or gender you are you will always be represented within this brand) Coils- (Everyone has unique hair and sometimes straight hair is always seen as the norm but no matter how curly, coily, or straight your hair is these products will benefit you!)

What product of yours can you not live without?

Hydrating Conditioning Cream (Deep Conditioner)

How do you come up with the scents?

I always loved tropical and fruity scents. So I always aim for scents with peach & mango in them (My favorite fruits) and I like soft scents like vanilla. I like these types of scents because they are not over bearing.

Do you think you’ll have a storefront soon?

Not sure about soon but that is definitely my goal in the future!

Where do you see your business in 5 or 10 years?

I see my business thriving based off the individuality and diversity my business has to offer! My brand is for all walks of life no mater what color, race, religion, or gender you are! My plan is to have my products in stores for all people to be able to purchase! I also plan on having a storefront that allows you to make your own hair products that cater to your individual needs!

(I can’t remember what happened to get her laughing, but I loved the images!)

Now, some fun questions:

What is your favorite thing to do around Jacksonville?

The beach Duhhh (:

When your family comes to town, what is something you guys always have to do while they are in town?

Spend quality family time together! Game night, cook out, shopping, and making a trip to a theme park!

What’s your favorite movie?

Menace II Society

What’s your favorite song?

Bob Marley – Is this love

What’s your favorite food?

Brown rice! Peaches and Mangos!

Favorite dessert?

Molten lava chocolate cake

Favorite restaurant?

Burger Fi (I love the veggie burgers)

Favorite place to hang out in Jacksonville?

(Downtown Jacksonville) I love the scenery, food places, and the different scenery!

What’s your current obsession?

I love to travel and see the world! I’m obsessed with seeing the world and meeting people I have never met before to learn different cultures and customs!

 

 

Southern Studios comes in for Headshots

I recently had the opportunity to photograph another set of photographers who needed updated headshots.

Brittany and Whitney own Southern Studios. They have a very light and airy style of photography. They use natural light. For this reason I wanted to photograph them on all white as well as in a more natural environment.

How long have you been in business?

    We have officially been in business since January 1, 2017! Hooray for celebrating our first year recently.

Where are you located?

    We are located in small town USA aka Keystone Heights & Starke, FL

 

How did you two come together?

    Funny story actually! Brittany contacted Whitney about photographing her son’s birth story several years ago and at the time, Whitney was only photographing them for family or close friends. Fast forward to Brittany buying a camera & contacting Whitney about showing her how to use it. We quickly realized that our personalities were seamless & we both worked extremely well together. A solid friendship was made and YES! Whitney photographed Brittany’s second child’s birth story. . unny how God works things out! 

Do  you guys have pretty similar styles? Or do you each have different things you like to photograph?

    Brittany loves weddings & birth stories. Whitney loves weddings and Senior sessions the most. Our styles are extremely similar which helps us work together so well. Light, classic & airy is what we both love and adore.

How did you come up with the name of your business?

    We knew we didn’t want to use our names and also wanted something unique. Brittany thought of ‘Southern Studios’ and we both fell in love with it.

Anything really funny ever happen while you were shooting?

    We are always laughing really! Typically at each other or with our hilarious clients. We love to have a good time.

How did you both end up shooting Canon? Why do you prefer them?

    Whitney was taught to shoot Canon & has always loved it. Never shot Nikon before but don’t really see us switching anytime soon! We love it.

What is a piece of advice you can give to newbies?

    Find what you LOVE & make it the best you know how. Never stop working and continuing to make your craft the absolute best! They say “your first 10,000 photographs are your worst..” which is so true. You can look back at your work 5 years down the road, or even 5 months & should be able to see some positive changes. 

What’s your current obsession?

    We are currently OBSESSING over us traveling to Nashville in March! We get to attend Julie Paisley’s photography workshop there for two days and couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

    Healthy & thriving! We love photography and what it has done in our lives. We are excited to see where SS will go!