Ritz Carlton Fort Lauderdale & Hugh Taylor Birch State Park
Rabbi Melinda Bracha Bernstein
Janel & Rob tied the knot in an intimate ceremony under the most beautiful banyan tree in Fort Lauderdale at Birch State Park. This was Janel and Rob’s first time taking professional photos together, so I wanted it to be a fun and memorable experience on their wedding day and get lots of photos they would be proud of! Often times, our clients don’t know what they need to get great photos, but they know the difference when they see them. I always do a few things to ensure success. To start, I scout the locations we’ll be photographing whenever possible and come up with a photo plan for the session. This allows me some freedom to change it up if I see a great shot, but I don’t waste time coming up with ideas, especially if we need to work quickly. We had to walk a little bit, but I love finding cool spots like this bronze wall, the little park that gave us a great shot of the Ritz Carlton sign, and lighting up the seated area in the lounge!
I also offer direction for posing and facial expression, which really helps if someone’s never studied themselves in photos or learned how to pose with their S/O before. The expressions and poses I ask for always depend on my clients and how they look best. Janel and Rob were naturals on camera and were comfortable with some more serious posing, which looked badass! I also try to plan for at least one or two “epic” shots, especially when I have an assistant (which I did this time thanks to the lovely Tara!). This could involve special lighting or capturing the couple in an eye catching way. I want every couple to walk away with something unique and personal from their session.
Janel and Rob made tons of time before the ceremony for their photos, which made all the difference in covering lots of ground, playing with lighting, and getting some gorgeous portraits! I loved capturing their sweet wedding celebration.
Jennifer and John exchanged their vows on a perfect, sunny afternoon on the putting green of gorgeous and newly-renovated Quail Ridge Country Club. This sweet couple was beaming away at each other all day and we couldn’t believe how quickly five months passed from their engagement session in October! All of Jennifer and John’s hard work planning came together to create a beautiful and memorable South Florida experience for them and their guests–many from my beautiful home state of North Carolina.
Just Glam Events provided amazing planning services and made sure we maximized our scheduled time for photos by helping with all the logistics and details–from a small bridal gown snafu to ensuring everyone had the proper flowers. We cannot emphasize enough that planning is the antidote to stress on your wedding day! We’re here to help guide and calm you through the unknowns, and we love being part of an excellent team of vendors whose first priority is your wedding day experience.
What more is there to say about someone beautiful, creative and dialed into her personal mission? Maybe just: Victoria Langford has something to say. She is producing her first solo album from her home studio in Brooklyn, New York and it’s full of heart and grueling emotion. When she asked me to come to NYC for her album shoot, I was honored and excited to develop a concept to try and reflect even a small piece of how much of herself she’s put into writing. We collaborated on designing the shoot–from outfits and locations to makeup choices and expression. We ended up choosing to photograph at her writing spaces in Brooklyn and Coney Island–one of the signature songs on the album. We wanted to capture her renewed joy at coming out of a painful experience in her life, but also the isolation of enduring it for so long.
The album itself is a unique combo of instrumentation and what Victoria describes as “pop indie baroque.” She is multi-talented, playing trombone, keys, guitar, and singing on the album. We had a lot of fun moments (channeling her inner Gaga and Beyonce) and plenty of silly laughs, but I absolutely love the more artistic, pensive shots that match the vibe of her music. I can’t wait to see what’s next for this talented woman! Check out her music and design work at VictoriaLangford.com.
After one of the rainiest weekends South Florida has had in awhile, I met the Chang family on a perfectly cool and sunny afternoon for a session at McArthur State Park. The grandparents couldn’t get enough of their grandkids and I loved photographing the connections between everyone. The boardwalk provided great photo opportunities and a beautiful view of the water on our way to the beach, which has miles of untouched coastal habitat. I love finding new places to photograph, especially state and national parks that deserve our patronage and support for preserving such beautiful wildlife. It felt great to get outdoors and enjoy nature with this sweet family!
Working with artists is one of our passions. I was so psyched to take some branding images for my friend Christian who is also an extremely talented recording and mixing engineer working with some of the most talented musicians in the world. As he was transitioning out of the Marine Corps Band and pursuing a new dream of recording film scores in LA, we took some photos to capture it. After developing a concept with Christian, I knew I wanted to incorporate moodier lighting and energy than usual to convey the emotion of music and sound. We did three or four setups and Christian was a true artist on his own, pulling out so many expressions and poses. This was a joy to photograph and I love how the images capture the feeling of how he has become The Boy Who Sees Sound.
There’s something about a cold & rainy day that leaves DC feeling a bit magical. I love the soft quality of the light and there are always fewer pedestrians that way, making you feel like it’s a city all to yourself. We were battling the weather for Bethany and Mike’s New Years Eve wedding, but we traveled prepared and knew how to make sure we got some great portraits in the rain. The first look at Le Meridien hotel was SO cute. Then we ventured out for some bridal party photos around town before their sweet ceremony. Bethany ordered some fun umbrellas and Nick and I were all decked out with our protective rain gear. We give this wedding party mad props for how cool they were with the rain. We had a lot of fun and made the most of it! DJ Elizer kept the dance party going at Top of the Town (with some truly impressive dance moves) until the New Years countdown. Cheers to a great end of another fantastic year!
This is always a favorite post because we can look back over the year and see the variety of work we’ve gotten to do, and remember joyful and funny moments. We are so thankful for the many opportunities we’ve had to create photos our clients are proud of. In July, Nick was published in USA Today for his architectural interiors of the new Why Hotel and Erin photographed our first Fort Lauderdale wedding! We worked with many families, couples and took headshots galore. Proposal photography has also been a new area of business, mostly due to excellent weather and beautiful beaches! It’s been a truly wonderful year growing in our business and skill. Thank you for all of your support. We’re excited for what 2019 will bring!
Miami may just be paradise in the winter time and Danish got a perfect, sunny day for his sunset proposal to Sonya. I helped Danish map out his plan to navigate Bill Baggs State Park and plan the perfect proposal. Under the ruse of visiting friends, Danish had accomplices bring Sonya to the beach where a line of roses in vases and a letter from him were waiting. As she rounded the corner, he was standing in front of the gorgeous lighthouse on Key Biscayne. All of our planning and Danish’s hard work was rewarded when she said, “YES!”
Suzanne and Paul recently moved to Fort Lauderdale and achieved their dreams of living on the water and getting a boat, but have also undergone the difficult loss of Suzanne’s mother. To honor her mother who always asked her to do Christmas cards, Suzanne and Paul wanted photos at their house for their family Christmas card with their three dogs. Nick and I used our lighting equipment to make them look their best in the early afternoon and ensure none of their doggies would get lost in the shadows. The photos show their zest for life and love of being on the water. I hope this session also brought Suzanne a sense of peace and closeness with her mom.
I was thrilled when Jorge reached out about proposing to his girlfriend (now fiance!) Crista. He was very thoughtful about what he wanted the experience to be like. He wanted to propose at the beach at sunset somewhere intimate and more private, and he had a plan to lay out messages in bottles recapping their past, present and future together before proposing. We worked together to determine the best location would be Lauderdale By the Sea a little ways off the beaten path. Jorge sent his friend Casey to be my accomplice that day. We placed the bottles and were able to set up Casey’s iPhone to capture the proposal on video! He also held a light for me, so we were able to work later as the sun went down. And the sunset we got was incredible! Bright blues gave way to pink sky and ground. The best part was seeing our plan come together for their beautiful proposal.