Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter: Blog http://kporterphotography.com/blog en-us KP Photo BFS Key West info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) Sun, 12 Oct 2014 01:12:00 GMT Sun, 12 Oct 2014 01:12:00 GMT http://kporterphotography.com/img/s3/v24/u559315390-o928268849-50.jpg Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter: Blog http://kporterphotography.com/blog 95 120 Extra Love: Retouching for Albums and Prints http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/8/extra-love-examples-of-retouching-for-album-images As I sit here working on the retouching for one of my latest albums, I thought it would be a good opportunity to show some examples of what goes into this "behind the scenes" step of the process.  I often get the question "What is the difference between editing and retouching?" 

Basic editing, which all images receive before you view them, is a faster, strictly objective process.  

Full retouching occurs once the final selections have been made for the album, or for prints that will go on the wall.  This level of work is much more time-consuming and extremely detail-oriented, which is why we reserve it for these images only.

Rough Draft Album Design Pages Bride and Groom wedding album example Series of images arranged in Key West wedding album

BASIC EDITING (all images)

FULL SERVICE RETOUCHING (album/prints)

  • adjust white balance so colors render correctly
  • adjust crop to tighten the composition in a scene
  • cull out the "blurs, blinks, and blah's"
  • straighten horizon lines and architecture
  • correct image distortion caused by wider lenses
  • add the contrast that is indicative of Karrie's style
  • add vignettes to draw focus to center as needed
  • dodge and burn (brighten and darken) areas of interest
  • add detail back into sand and sky as needed
  • add minor teeth whitening and small blemish removal
  • sequence multiple cameras into cohesive story
  • renumber sequenced images
  • export raw images into readable format
  • uploading to client gallery and saving to client USB drive
  • sharpening eyes and shiny details
  • more extensive skin blemish removal as needed
  • removing makeup smears
  • removing stray hairs and "fly-aways"
  • cooling down sunburned skin
  • retouching out harsh tan lines
  • retouching out garbage or other distracting elements
  • removing outlets, exit signs, and other unsightly details
  • removing dirt, makeup stains, or sweat marks on clothing
  • straightening crooked necklace, candle, column, etc
  • fixing broken tile, missing patch of grass, scratches on car, and other "dangit"s
  • simple "vanity edits" like double chin, love-handles, tummy pooch, arm tightening, leg lifting, and other small fixes.

Mouse over images to see "Before and After" **

**(viewing this page from mobile device?  Mouseover will not work, but we've included some handy animated GIF's, ordered in special from Windows '95.  Ha!  

SCROLL TO BOTTOM OF BLOG POST TO SEE MOBILE-FRIENDLY BEFORE AND AFTER IMAGES.

 

This image was originally taken with the idea of cropping it to a square, so I wasn't so much concerned about the items on the left and right edges.  When it came time to do the design, however, the square format just wasn't cutting it, so we decided to use the full horizontal.  That meant working some retouching magic to tidy up the room.  And if I do say so myself, that left end-table is looking pretty darn good.  Do you realize how many layers and out-of-box ideas that takes to pull that off?

 

While I would have much rather had the time to tidy the room beforehand, I will say that Photoshop challenges like this are really good for me.  I've been studying, using, and teaching Photoshop for about 15 years now, and enjoy stretching the creative and problem-solving muscles it takes to cleanly edit an image like this.  I'm always learning, of course, but projects like this put me into a bizarre zen-like trance.  I get completely absorbed, and obsess over ever little pixel.  In a world of constant interruptions, it feels good to get work steadily on one thing for 45 minutes.  

These two (above and below) are those candid type of "in the moment" images, that a photographer has to grab unscripted, without much direction or interaction with the subject.  

Can you imagine how annoying it would have been for me to go "I know you're about to have this really iconic moment on your wedding day of putting on your dress, but can you - half naked - kick your shirt to the side instead of it being at your feet?  Oh and you there...yes...can you reach down - while you have a dress over your head - and move the envelope and iPhone charger sitting on the couch behind you?  Oh and everyone, tidy your buns, smooth over your hair.  Yes perfect...now you may continue".  

Um...no...take the dang picture and move on.  

 

This image was requested by a bride looking for a little "slimming action", and we were happy to help her enjoy her ideal vision of herself.  :)


 

This image was taken from an upper-floor balcony.  I asked the bride to turn and look up at me. 

It resulted in a sweet image, but ideally, given my vantage point, I should have turned her left shoulder forward just a bit to avoid it widening the amount of horizontal space her body takes up in the frame.

I realized it instantly, but like many times during a busy wedding day, we had places to be.

 

Anytime we can take 30 seconds to interrupt a moment and fix something distracting, we will do that. 

But rest assured that your album and wall portraits will never suffer as a result of a wayward plastic bag, an unruly piece of hair, or a clumsy guest who steps on or stains your dress.  

 

Article by Karrie Porter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mobile-Friendly Before and After Photos of Album Retouching

Viewing this page from a Smart Phone or Tablet?  Sorry...mouseovers don't work for you.  But here are some handy animations to show you the "before and afters" discussed above:

 

 

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) image editing karrie porter photography key west photography photo retouching retouching wedding album wedding photography http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/8/extra-love-examples-of-retouching-for-album-images Sat, 16 Aug 2014 23:53:07 GMT
Venue Feature: Pier House Resort in Key West, FL http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/7/featured-wedding-venue-pier-house-resort-in-key-west-fl

Here in Key West, one of the most popular wedding venues is The Pier House Resort and Spa, in the middle of downtown.  Combined with a great downtown location, luxury amenities, an onsite spa and salon, a spacious and beautiful beach (rare for Key West), waterfront views, and great staff, it's hard to beat.

Enjoy this visual tour of the Pier House, start to finish from the preparations, ceremony, portraits, and reception. 

PREPARATION AMENITIES

I have always found the rooms to be spacious, well decorated, spotlessly clean, and beautifully lit with sunlight streaming through the sheer curtains (this is something I personally like to see, as it makes the most flattering photographs that allow me to shape light on a subject without using artificial flash).  

Bridal suites at Pier House Resort are roomy and comfortableSweet SuitesBridal suites at Pier House Resort are roomy and comfortable

 

A bride's dress hangs elegantly in the window of her Pier House Resort suiteShow off the DressA bride's dress hangs elegantly in the window of her Pier House Resort suite

Soft lighting from a window at the Pier House Resort allows beautiful detail shots with lots of shape and detail.Details, DetailsLighting doesn't come to mind to most people when choosing a hotel for their wedding, but it does create opportunities for images that have a different look and feel than those created with artificial flash.
Bridesmaid wearing floral kimono wrap pops the cork on a bottle of champagne for her best friend's wedding in Key West.So Thirsty!Never worry that your champagne wishes will be ignored! Delivery to the room often includes everything from fruit, to mini sandwich wraps, and of course, your beverage of choice!

 

AN UNFORGETTABLE "FIRST LOOK"

When you see each other for the first time on your wedding day, the moment will already be special.  But since you will likely also have photos taken during this time, you want the surroundings to be stunning as well.  Thankfully, the Pier House has several nice places that allow you the space and quiet atmosphere that is perfect for this.  

Bride and groom see each other for the first time before their wedding at Pier House Resort.In the GardenPier House has a beautiful garden throughout the center of the hotel that allows snug little spots to see each other for the first time.
 
First look with LGBT couple at Pier House Resort, hidden among the foliage to give them some privacy.Privacy SettingsWith a moment like this, you want it documented, but you don't want your photographer to be in the middle of it.
Bride and groom exchange cards on their wedding day during a first look session.Happy ExchangesThe "first look" is also a great time to exchange cards or other gifts. The balconies overlooking the harbor make a nice area to do so. Bridesmaids sneaking a peek at a bride and groom seeing each other for the first time.Sneaking a PeekThe beachside covered patio area offers a shady spot where you can be perfectly alone...that is, until your bridesmaids find out where you are. :)
 

CEREMONY SERENDIPITY

People often think that getting married on the beach in Key West means you have to forego the amenities and full service of a resort.  With a wedding at the Pier House, you get the best of both. They have two primary ceremony locations on the property, both of which we see couples light up with delight when they see it all set up for the first time.  

The paved covered patio area leads out onto the white sand beach area, and offers a beautiful unobstructed blue sky background.Beach CeremonyThe paved covered patio area leads out onto the white sand beach area, and offers a beautiful unobstructed blue sky background. One area of their beach extends all the way to the water's edge, however because this is near the bar and the restaurant, and is where other hotel guests go to relax in their lounge chairs, it's actually better to have the ceremony a little further down, tucked in behind the beautiful sea-grape foliage, with a view of the blue water in the background.  

From a photographic standpoint, this site is actually the best because the setup allows the sunlight to come in from the side, which is a very flattering effect.  

This spot also has a covered patio where the ceremony musician can set up in the shade, and a walled-off "staging area" from which you can line up with your bridesmaids, and give your dad a final kiss on the cheek before you make your grand entrance.

The other thing I like about it is that you have the entire area to yourself.  Beach weddings on Smathers or Higgs require you to jockey for position when you arrive, and other hotels have beaches that are so small, you don't really have much separation from other guests.  Here, the only people surrounding you are those you intended to be present.  

A large group of guests cheer for the newlyweds at a beach ceremony at Pier House Resort in Key West.Invite Them AllWhether it's an intimate gathering of your 10 closest family and friends, or you've got people flying into town by the dozens, the beach ceremony site at the Pier House can easily accommodate.


In terms of size, the Pier House excels again.  You have so much flexibility with how many guests they can accommodate.  Not only is their resort large enough that everyone can have a room on site, but their ceremony sites both can scale both up and down.  It's very common for us to see very small weddings with 10 to 15 people, and you don't want to be getting married in a massive, expansive space that feels empty.  At the same time, you don't want a venue that is so restrictive in its capacity that you have to worry if extra people show up.

The Pier House gives you a setting that is intimate enough for very small events, but scales easily when everyone is attending. 

The waterfront terrace offers another beautiful spot to get married, especially if your guest list is very small.Terrace CeremonyThe waterfront terrace offers another beautiful spot to get married, especially if your guest list is very small.

On the other side of the resort is the waterfront terrace ceremony location.  This is a large private open balcony-type area that feels as if it sticks out over the water.  It has wooden pylons that accent the corners, and a clean white railing that borders the area.  

While I do find it to be a very pretty spot to have your wedding, there are  few things to consider.  Because it is not as "tucked away" from the water as the beach spot, you are more aware of the activity out on the harbor.  There is a jetski rental company that departs nearby, so occasionally you'll see them zoom by.  On the flip side, this also means you have a better view of the historic schooner sailboats as they float past, often waving and hooting in congratulations! 

My biggest recommendation, however, when choosing this spot, is to talk with the coordinator about how the chairs will be positioned, and to be aware of how this will affect the images your photographer can capture.  While the sun going down behind the altar area sounds like a romantic idea, this means everyone else will be facing directly into the sun.  Guests will need to squint or wear sunglasses, or at worst will be holding up their hands to their eyes.  

Be aware of how the positioning of your ceremony in relation to the sun will affect the style and look of your ceremony images.Sun SplashThe terrace location, while very beautiful, is going to give you a different look in your photos. Light flares and sun that spills in from behind can have a romantic look, but is not for everyone.

Your images will have to be taken in such a way that either allows sunlight to splash into the scene, or the photographer will have to position herself at angles that aren't always ideal.  If guests are against the right railing, it limits images from that side, which is the direction the bride is usually facing.

If you have your ceremony on the terrace, maybe look into positioning the "aisle" perpendicular to the sunset, as opposed to facing it.  You'll have a shorter aisle to walk down, but the positives may outweigh these considerations.  

 

PORTRAIT PARADISE

Whether you choose to have your bride and groom photos taken before or after the ceremony, one area that Pier House Resort really shines is its beautiful surroundings, lush garden walkways, and variety of scenic areas to shoot in, all of which are mostly devoid of people loitering in the background or disturbing the session.  

In addition, the hotel is so centrally located to downtown Key West, that it is very easy to wander off property and incorporate the funky and colorful Duval Street attractions - all within walking distance - into your portraits.

Pier House beach shoreline makes a great place for group photos with the bridal partyJump for JoyPier House beach shoreline makes a great place for group photos with the bridal party
 
Married couple take pictures at a Key West resort with a burst of sunlight coming in behind them.Beam of CreativityWith so many nooks and crannies to explore throughout the hotel, it's easy to pull out creative effects like this.
The gardens throughout the resort give your photographs a true tropical feel.Perfect FitThe gardens throughout the resort give your photographs a true tropical feel.
 

RECEPTION TIME

Once the wedding ceremony is over and all the portraits have been captured, it's time to party!  Here is where you'll have a variety of options.  While we have seen receptions take place in the conference center, most happen on the terrace, with select smaller weddings being hosted on the restaurant veranda.  

Cutting the cake at an indoor wedding reception at Pier House Key West ResortIndoor SpaceWhile not used as frequently, the Grand Ballroom at the Pier House Resort is a great indoor space to have your wedding reception. Veranda reception setup at the Pier HouseSmall Party. Cozy Setting.The veranda makes a nice comfortable setting if you are just celebrating with a small group of friends and family and aren't hosting a full reception. They can set it up with one long table, or a few round 8-Tops. The terrace reception area is the most popular and spacious spot at Pier House to have your post-wedding party.  Under the StarsThe terrace reception area is the most popular and spacious spot at Pier House to have your post-wedding party.

The terrace has plenty of space for the band or DJ, some open areas for dancing, pretty overhead strings of bulbs or lanterns, a full service bar, plenty of tables for family, gifts, guest book, and even room for a Photo Booth or a custom Cigar Rolling Station, if you're up for it! 

Another option is to have your reception under the beachside patio.  The layout allows for a grand entrance and plenty of "room to groove".Make an EntranceAnother option is to have your reception under the beachside patio. The layout allows for a grand entrance and plenty of "room to groove". Bridal bouquet of flowers sitting on a sweetheart table during a wedding reception.All Taken Care OfThe wedding packages at the Pier House mean all you have to do is choose your preferences, and they will order and deliver.
 
Danny DiFabio with Rodriguez Cigars specializes in bringing custom cigar rolling tables and supplies, and will even teach guests how to roll their own.  Roll Your Own Cigar!Danny DiFabio with Rodriguez Cigars specializes in bringing custom cigar rolling tables and supplies, and will even teach guests how to roll their own.

In addition to the space and amenities, the Pier House also wins in its delicious catering.  Be sure to ask them to include their delicious conch chowder!  The staff is always super friendly and attentive, and the receptions always run very smoothly.  I've never had a bad experience as a vendor at this location, nor have I seen my couples run into any issues either.  

A photo booth is a really fun way to create memories without everyone feeling so formal and stiff. 1, 2, 3, Smile!A photo booth is a really fun way to create memories without everyone feeling so formal and stiff. Junior bridesmaid dancing at Key West wedding reception.Room to MoveThe fist pumping, macarena, YMCA, and cupid shuffling can go on all night long.
Dad and daughter dance during a destination wedding in Key West.Dance with DadWith a large open space overlooking the ocean, dancing with dad (and anyone else, for that matter) is no problem.

While there are many venues in Key West that can deliver a great experience for your wedding day, I have photographed enough events at the Pier House to know it is a solid choice for couples looking for a place to make their planning easy, and their event unforgettable.

 

 

Author: Karrie Porter

Karrie Porter Photography
Key West, Florida

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) Pier House Key West reviews getting married how to choose a venue key west wedding venue photos of Pier House pier house resort wedding ceremony wedding reception where to get married http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/7/featured-wedding-venue-pier-house-resort-in-key-west-fl Mon, 14 Jul 2014 03:44:00 GMT
Make Your First Year of Marriage As Beautiful As Your Wedding Day http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/6/make-your-first-year-of-marriage-as-beautiful-as-your-wedding-day From the moment he pops the question, you believe that it will be a fairytale wedding and you’ll live happily ever after.  But the truth is, you must put in a bit of work to have the story play out the way you intend.  Even though you may have had the most beautiful wedding ceremony, the first year of marriage can throw you for a loop if you aren’t poised and ready to deal with it effectively.  It is natural to have some misunderstandings as you learn more about each other, but knowing what to expect can help you live a happy and successful life with your new spouse.    

Bride puts ring on groom's finger during their wedding ceremony

 

 

  • Commit to your partnership from the very beginning and make an effort to work on that partnership every single day.  Just having this mindset from the get-go will put you in a better frame of mind when issues do come up.

 

  • Encourage, be proud of and show support for your spouse by building them up and helping their self-esteem.  Always make time for each other and don’t let other activities keep you away from home for long periods of time.  Quality time will build commitment, love and mutual support for each other.

 

  • When planning for your wedding, it is important to plan for your marriage as well.  Discuss responsibilities with your fiancé, in addition to chore expectations, finances, children and other long term goals.  This is the opportunity to get excited about the great adventure with your new life partner.

 

 

Bride and groom enjoy a casual ceremony on the beach of Key West, with their wedding date written in the sand.

 

  • Always be honest with your spouse.  Discuss your needs and problems openly without complaining, but instead be truthful and discuss how you feel specifically. 

 

  • Remember that your spouse can’t read your mind, and always try to keep your relationship on track.  Problems can only be fixed with communication and not by turning to other people for advice or to “vent.”  Keep your marriage issues just between the two of you.  

  

  • If you find yourself struggling during the first year of your marriage, sit down together and look through your wedding photos.  It will take you back to that special day and remind you of all the great reasons you decided to marry your best friend.  Flipping through the images in your album will help you relive that happy day, and will help you to keep the big picture in mind, help you rediscover your spouse, and also bring back all of those fun newlywed butterflies.    

 

 

The first year is spent getting to know each other on a closer level, loving and encouraging each other.  While keeping these simple points in mind, you can spend the first year of marriage enjoying being with your husband or wife, and looking forward to a wonderful life together.

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) advice for newly married couples big picture first year marriage advice tips for newlyweds wedding photos http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/6/make-your-first-year-of-marriage-as-beautiful-as-your-wedding-day Mon, 30 Jun 2014 18:00:12 GMT
Getting Grooms Going. Using Key West's quirky energy into great groomsmen wedding photos. http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/6/getting-grooms-going-using-key-wests-quirky-energy-into-great-groomsmen-wedding-photos Unless you have a groom who is really outgoing, photogenic, and has a big personality, most brides at some point will worry about their fiance's attitude or behavior during the photography session.  The top concerns are usually one of the following: 

Karrie Porter Photography's image of bride and groom snuggling.

 

 

 

  • He will get impatient
  • He will feel awkward and uncomfortable
  • He'll be hot, hungry, and grumpy
  • He will be too self conscious to let loose and have fun

 

 

 

 

 

But fear not, my veiled taffeta beauty!  If you go about the photography session of the two of you the right way, it will be smooth sailing, and your man will be asking "Oh we're done already?"  The key things to keep in mind are:

Snuggling in the peace and quiet near the water's edge in Islamorada in the Florida Keys.

1) He might not realize it now, but after the stress and hubbub of the preparations, ceremony and family formals, it's going to be a huge relief to finally get some time alone with you away from the attention and the activity.  If you decide to see each other before the wedding during a "first look", you'll find those nerves dissipate even more.

Groom leads his new fiance in a silly frolic down the beach in Key West.  © Karrie Porter Photography

2) This is only a short segment of the day.  You might be thinking "big picture" and how the schedule will play out with the photographer over an entire day, but keep in mind that most of that is documentary-style capture of the moments as they unfold.  It's only during the more directed portrait sessions that he will even be conscious of the camera.  So don't fret that "there's no way he'll last 6 hours", because it's really only about 30 to 90 minutes (depending on the wedding, of course) total that the photographer will be asking for his direct and personal attention.

If you'd asked this bride if her man would play air guitar for the sake of a funny wedding photo, she probably would have guessed not.

 

3) He might not be normally that "into" pictures, but you'd be surprised how often grooms really amp it up on their wedding day.  Think about it...they're happy, they're excited, they feel good, they look good, they have people they love around them, they're in a beautiful space, they feel important, and they've just married the girl of their dreams.  All those endorphins have a way of energizing guys, and they often emote more readily, smile more genuinely, laugh more heartily, and play more enthusiastically.

Guys enjoying a float away on the Nautilimo in Islamorada, Florida  © Karrie Porter Photography

4) Finally, be sure to get buy-in from your fiance during the planning process.  If he's more of a "whatever you think" kinda guy, then just go ahead and plan for some fun activities for just him and the guys.  If you think he'll be stiff and awkward having preparation photos done at the hotel, schedule him to meet the photographer somewhere cool.  Tossing quarters over your head into a plastic fish's mouth hanging on the sign of Captain Tony's Bar will certainly make for some interesting pre-wedding photos!

Groom throws quarter into the mouth of the plastic grouper above Captain Tony's bar in Key West.
 
Groomsmen coming out of a Key West wedding on Higgs Beach in their linen slacks and coral bowties, holding custom engraved flasks.

If location or logistics won't allow for an off-property activity, then think about the kinds of things your man is into (short round of touch football with the guys during cocktail hour?), or maybe a gift he is giving to his groomsmen.  Something like custom-engraved flasks filled with a little "liquid courage" are a subtle but meaningful way to make the groom's photos unique and enjoyable to him.  

Groom jumps off yellow bench in old town Key West during wedding photo shoot.

 

It's very common for brides to express fear that their husbands-to-be will be cranky and uncooperative, but most of the time, that turns out to be a non-issue.  

If you're working with a professional photographer who is organized, thoughtful, and creative, they will help you come up with some great options to make the experience enjoyable for your guy, and they will have a way of making everyone feel comfortable, including people who don't traditionally enjoy being photographed. 

This in turn will translate into excellent images.  You never know, your man might just surprise you with how photogenic he can really be!

(PUBLIC NOTICE: NO GROOMS WERE HARMED IN THE MAKING OF THIS BLOG POST)

 

By Karrie Porter 

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) Key West wedding couples Tips for better images of the groom Using an experienced Key West wedding photographer how to get groom to smile http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/6/getting-grooms-going-using-key-wests-quirky-energy-into-great-groomsmen-wedding-photos Fri, 20 Jun 2014 00:07:57 GMT
What to Expect During Wedding Day Preparation Photos http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/1/what-to-expect-during-wedding-day-preparation-photos  

What does it mean when the photographer says they will include "preparation photos"?

Preparation photos are the images your photographer will capture when they first arrive for your wedding day.  Often, these images are used to "set the stage" for the day's events.  They give the viewer a sense of introduction, and set the tone for the style, colors, theme, and overall mood of the wedding.  

Fish eye image of wedding dressPreparation photos set the tone for the style and overall mood of the wedding.

Why do I want them?

While not vital to every wedding, whenever your photography schedule can accommodate it, it's nice to have those behind-the-scenes moments captured before the event begins.  There is beauty and emotion in those subtle nuances.  The bride in deep thought, biting her lower lip while she gets her veil put on.  The mother standing in the corner, looking on with that unmistakable look of admiration in her eyes.  The well-manicured fingers of the maid-of-honor prepping the latch on the back of the necklace.  Those subtle hints contribute bit impact on the overall story.

Tidying up the room before the photographer arrives will maximize the time ($) you have them there.Stay refreshed, but hide the bottles when you're done! :) Do I need to do anything special to get ready for these images?

If you want to maximize the photographer's time once she arrives, it can be helpful to have unsightly things out of view:

• empty water bottles and beer cans
• shopping bags and receipts
• dress tags and laundry
• and other similar "unmentionable" items stashed into a closet or designated corner. 

That's not to say that the room needs to be white-glove ready, but it generally makes for less fuss later, since a good photographer will take the time necessary to remove the soda can from your background as as your mother is putting on your bracelet. 

If the general flotsam and jetsam can't be corralled, a secondary suggestion would be:

• keep at least one area, preferably near the biggest window in the room, clear of "stuff"
• if nearby garbage cans and chairs can be removed, that helps too. 
• this will give you an area for window-lit portraits
• stunning "dress in the window" shots can be composed with minimal fuss.

Now...of course this can all be done by the photographer themselves, but because many packages are based on time, it's probable that the preparation photos get the smallest allotment of that schedule, so every moment taken to clean up the area is less time she can be actually taking pictures.

Discussing the wedding day scheduleGoing over the rundown for the day. What should I do when the photographer arrives?

When your photographer arrives, she'll generally want to greet you and your attendants and family.  She might give a general introduction to the room, or she might address each person to start learning names.  She'll likely give you a quick recap/rundown of what she'll be working on. 

Because preparation photos tend to be more candid, your photographer will usually work her way around the room, taking advantage of whatever little activities are unfolding.  It's not necessary to look at the camera every time you see it pointed at you.  Just carry on and pretend no one is watching.

Adjusting the bride's hair accessoryLet your attendants and family know that they are part of the day and don't need to hide from the camera.

Is there anything in particular that should be shared with the family and bridesmaids?

Yes!  It's very helpful if they understand that a photographer will be coming for preparations.  Often, they are caught off-guard, and worry that their pictures will be taken while they are not yet "camera-ready".  This is part of the process, and contributes to that very "behind the scenes" feel referred to earlier.  Some people, generally relatives who happen to be in the room, get an instant sense of being "in the way".  It's good to reassure them that they are part of the day, and they should be in the pictures.

Those who are more shy may worry that the photographer will be getting them in their undergarments.  While most professionals are sensitive to this and will reassure them of what they intend to shoot (or not), it's good to state your preference.  Some brides will drop-trou' without any hesitation.  Others are so conservative that they prefer to dress in another room.  Either way, just express your comfort level so everyone is on the same page.

Window-lit portraits are a beautiful and simple way to create great images before you get married.The window will be part of the preparation photos, so let folks sitting nearby that, at some point, they'll have to relocate to a new seat. Referring back to the clearing of an area...sometimes guests may be seated in an area that is the prime spot for pictures.  In a small room, it may be the only viable "scene".  No one likes to be kicked out of their comfortable chair, and if your photographer is human, they will feel bad asking.  But there is work to be done, so inevitably someone might have to be relocated to get the images needed.  With this in mind, it's good to just plant that bug ahead of time.  If the cleared window area is decided on beforehand, this helps anyone sitting in that vicinity know to expect they will eventually have to move.

How long should preparation photos take?

It depends on the size of the wedding, and how much is going on.  It also depends on whether your and your fiance's room are in the same building, or for that matter, in the same location.   But in general, about 20 minutes for the guys, 10 minutes of walking back and forth if you're both in the same location, 20 minutes allowance if driving between two locations, 30 minutes for the girls, and 10 minutes for bridal portraits before leaving the room, is reasonable. 

This, of course, assumes everything runs on time, which often doesn't happen.  A hair style may be uncooperative, an earring may break in two and have to be super-glued to your ear (yes...that has happened!), the flowers may have gone missing, a hem has unraveled, and a whole host of other "Murphy's Laws" should be accounted for.  In other words, if you can, it's good to buffer in a few more minutes juuuusst in case.  If you're planning on doing a First Look session as well, then throw in another 20 minutes for that as well (5 min walk down and setup, 10 min shooting, 5 min return to rooms).     

Groom adjusting his tuxedo before the ceremony.The groom may have less to do, but it's important to get his preparations also.

What are some of the types of images I can expect to see from the preparations?

• Full length and details of dress • Groom "primping", brushing hair, etc • Bride and mom  /  Groom with dad
• Arrangements of flowers, rings, garter • Getting boutonnieres pinned on • Bridal portraits / Portraits of groom
• Touching up makeup and hair • Groomsmen helping with jacket, cufflinks • Silly/fun bridal party images
• Putting on dress, jewelry, veil •  Casual guy moments, joking, roughhousing • Details of room, champagne, hotel motifs

 

 

 

 

 

 

While it's reasonable to expect that not every wedding will have every single type of image from this list (and frankly, you want a photographer who doesn't work off a "shot list" but has a general template from which they start, building onto it with additional creative images and original ideas), and not all will follow these exact steps, this hopefully gives you a sense of what it means to include preparation photos in your wedding day schedule.  

 

Article by Karrie Porter

 

 

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) getting ready groom getting dressed preparation photos types of images included in preparations wedding photography what to expect during wedding http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/1/what-to-expect-during-wedding-day-preparation-photos Sun, 26 Jan 2014 18:59:12 GMT
How 4 hours of Coverage Can Fly By http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/1/how-four-hours-coverage-can-fly-by

You might be thinking "I'm just having a really small Key West destination wedding; I could never use up 4 hours of coverage".

Large wedding party enjoying photos after the ceremony.Planning a big wedding is easy. You know you're going to need lots of time to include everything. Small weddings, however, can take more time than you think, so watch out for "little things" that eat up the day, regardless of how big the wedding is.

It's true, four hours does seem to be that magic starting number of many wedding photographers.  If you're planning an event with a handful of guests, it might be tempting to look past photographers whose packages start at four hours. 

Couple eloping on the beach in Key West.Elopement ceremonies are about the only weddings that can easily make use of only 1 or 2 hours of photography. Having photographed tons of "small weddings" (which are "average" sized for us here in Key West!), I can attest to how many brides struggle with this.  Sure, there are some events that really only warrant an hour, maybe two, but they tend to be teeny tiny, ceremony-only type weddings where it's just the bride and groom, the photographer, and the officiant.  Every now and then we'll see a few friends in attendance, but that's it. 

Beyond that, most weddings, even self-described "tiny weddings" (again, often "average" in Key West) can easily make use of the standard four hours of coverage.  I'll get to the breakdown in a minute, but in a nutshell, the timing blocks out into four major areas:

PREPARATIONS    |    CEREMONY AND FAMILY GROUPS

BRIDE & GROOM PORTRAITS     |     FINAL PARTY/TOASTS/COCKTAILS

In a very broad sense, each one of these makes up roughly an hour.  Now, before you scoff that there's no way you'll need "an hour" of getting ready shots, let me just say that I agree!  You don't need an hour.  But if you're going to have them, you will need about 30 minutes for the ladies and about 15 minutes for the groom.  And assuming you're not getting ready in the same room, you know that bipedal action it takes to get from one end of the hotel to the other...and back?  Yep...that's an easy 3 to 5 minutes each way. 

Okay, okay...so no, we aren't counting steps between rooms, but my point is that it is so easy to forget about all the little things that eat up the day.  Walking to and from, loading into the car, waiting for the elevator, and so on.  If 10 different activities each take "only five minutes", that's basically an entire hour right there.  And even if you are executing your wedding day with military precision, something will inevitably take longer than expected, so you have to account for some conservative "buffer time", just in case.

 

Cannon balls as part of your wedding portraits could be the next best thing.You chose a destination for a reason. Why not make use of it for your wedding photos? You can bet your best friend won't have cannon balls in her wedding album, now will she?

Here is one sample 4 Hour Wedding Schedule for a smaller event in which everything is taking place at a single location (assuming the couple are both staying at the venue where the ceremony will be held), assuming the bride and groom won't see each other beforehand, and aren't needing the photographer for a big reception.

20 min Check in, detail shots, makeup, flowers, and other "not-quite-yet-ready" preparation shots of the girls
  5 min Relocate to the guys' room.
15 min Preparations (guys)
  5 min Head back to the girls' room.
15 min Getting into dress / portraits of bride alone
----
10 min Walk down and line up for ceremony
20 min Ceremony
10 min Well wishes / Photographer sets up for groups
20 min Family groups / Formal bridal party
----
10 min Bride and Groom around hotel
10 min Drive to First Location
15 min Shoot at First Location
10 min Drive to Second Location
15 min Shoot at Second Location  *(times are estimated conservatively...often there is time for a 3rd stop, traffic and route permitting)
----
10 min Drive back to hotel, head back in to reconvene with guests
15 min Introductions, Toasts
15 min Mingling, Candids
10 min Details, food, place settings, rings
10 min Cake, Informal groups and couples, final shot of bride and groom
 
As you can see, no one single element takes very long by itself to cover, but when lots of important little details are combined, it makes it very easy to use up a 4 Hour Wedding Package without hardly breaking a sweat.   Good luck in your wedding planning!
 
 
Article by Karrie Porter Bond
 
 
 
 
 
]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) 4 hour wedding schedule getting married in key west how many hours do I need a photographer key west wedding planning ideas need help deciding ceremony time small wedding package wedding photo schedule wedding planning http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2014/1/how-four-hours-coverage-can-fly-by Sat, 21 Dec 2013 04:45:00 GMT
Yes, You're Getting a Wedding Album http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2013/11/yes-you-are-getting-a-wedding-album  

 

 

Is this what you want to keep you warm at night?THIS?Digital images alone do not constitute a well-delivered product from a photographer. OR? This is more like it.Or THIS?A professionally designed wedding album becomes a keepsake that stays with your family forever.
 
"I Don't Need A Wedding Album"
 
I hear this from couples a lot.  Conditioned by our digitally-connected world that is always on, always accessible, and oh-so-full of gizmo goodness, who wouldn't think that "the digital files" were all a girl would ever need to be happy?   But I'm here to tell you otherwise.
 
We love our gadgets.  iPads, Smart Phones, Apps, Social Networks... 
If it's in the Cloud, we love it.  I love you smart phoneIf it's in the Cloud, we love it.Conditioned by our always-on world, brides can't help but think that digital gizmo-goodness is all they need to be happy. (Image: 'The Suit Up' 3D printed iPhone case)
 
So, it's no wonder that many couples have a half-hearted perception of a wedding album.  
 
Let me tell you why I propose against axing the wedding album. 
 
For a long time, we did albums, because "that's what you did".  Then with the digital revolution, we got 'hip', and moved to just providing the digital image files. 
 
I did that for about 5 or 6 years, because that's what brides started asking for, and I wasn't clear enough on the consequences of my acquiescence.  I rationalized that with all the technology available, all the options clients had for creating their own products, that it was no longer necessary for me to provide them. 
 
But you know what happened?  Of all the brides during that time who did not opt for any products, no album, no prints, just the digital files, only ONE ended up doing anything with them.  One!  The rest were too busy with careers, marriage, babies, hardships, and just life in general, to ever have the hours and hours it takes to successfully plan, lay out, design, edit, and order, a nice album. 
 
A Source of PrideBooks from our Italian Graphistudio line.
 
 
 
 
 
I began feeling heartbroken for all of my couples who'd invested a good amount of money, energy, and time out of their wedding day, to have me create these amazing photographs for them, only to find out that I'd done them a complete disservice. 
 
 
 
 
 
Sure I'd given them what they "wanted", but as a result, the images had sat cold and unloved on a silver disc, stuck in a drawer in the computer desk.  I had abandoned the images for an "Easy Yes".
 
Hands working on a photo albumAlbum craft in progressThe work of talented artists and skilled craftsmen goes into each album.
 
But then I realized why it bothered me.  I am a full service photographer.  I plan, create, capture, edit, retouch, and otherwise give lots of love to your images.  So why jump ship at that point?   After all....
  • A commissioned artist doesn't spend hours on an initial sketch, only to hand over a rough draft to the patron with a brush and "paint by number" grid. 
  • An architect doesn't draw up a blueprint, send it off in a tube-mailer to the client, and leave him to figure out how to build it.  
  • The composer doesn't create the measures of an original score, simply to give to the concert benefactor to hum pleasantly to himself. 

But this is what was essentially happening with weddings.

 
OK...OK...Enough with the self-deprecation.
 
 
Let's also talk about the real danger this "digital only" phenomenon is taking us...
 
Album compileCare and Closure First of all, when you think of the rapidly-changing digital environment, there is no way to guarantee the long-term viability of a digital image.  If you have parents who've been married a long time, you may have well pulled out the album and gone back through the day with them.  Once the images exist in print, they are real, they have life, and they will last practically forever (with certain limitations of course). 
 
I appreciate a digital and sharable file as much as the next person in our tech-savvy generation, but I've also watched floppies turn to laser discs, get shrunk down to CD's, and further still into Thumb Drives.  Some laptop manufacturers don't even incorporate CD drives anymore because it is a fading technology.  We still have hard drives and flash storage, but they crash, USB's lose the electrical charge that stores their information, and file formats become incompatible as programs upgrade and operating system change.
 
Floating on clouds?  Cloud-based storage is indeed a very useful thing.  But the technology is new, and untested.  We live in a very connected world where somewhere, in a land far-far-away, there is an IT guy fixing whatever glitch is currently plaguing a system that we benefit from.  But what about a global virus?  I'm not one of those "Doomsday Preppers", but can you imagine how devastated you would be if you relied solely on cloud-storage for everything that made up your digital life...Facebook, Flickr, Pinterest, Picasa, Google Drive, DropBox...and one day it was all wiped out? 
Album bindingLongevityOnce your wedding images exist in print, they take on new life. They are real, and will last practically forever.
 
So, I decided to go back to the "right way" of doing things, and that is providing the service, start to finish, and delivering something beautiful and tangible, that you can pick up with your two hands, flip through fondly, and display proudly.  While I pretty-much-almost-never will say the ugly two-letter word ('no') to my brides, this is something I feel responsible to save you from mis-guided advice. 
 
Engagement bookDelivered with a kiss(figuratively speaking)...The feeling of fulfillment returns every time you look through it.
 
 
Couples will ask, but my answer will always be the same.  A lonely existence as a sequence of 0's and 1's is not what I want for your wedding photos.  Let me give you an amazing day, beautiful images, and a fun time.  And when it's done, let me post your images to your gallery, share them with you on Facebook, send them to you on a disc and in a proof book, AND THEN, deliver you a nicely wrapped, beautifully crafted, custom designed, wedding album.
 
It marks the final stage of our long journey together.  It is the final note of the symphony, the last brush stroke on painted canvas, and the remaining corner stone in an architectural masterpiece.

 

 

Article by Karrie Porter Bond

Google

 

 

 

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) do I need an album only want digital files shoot and burn should I design my own album what to expect from a professional photographer why you should want a wedding album http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2013/11/yes-you-are-getting-a-wedding-album Sat, 30 Nov 2013 21:45:00 GMT
Plan a Long Weekend Engagement Getaway http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2013/11/plan-a-long-weekend-engagement-getaway Scheduling a long weekend in your destination wedding location is one of the best things you can do leading up to the big day.

Engaged couple near mosaic wall in downtown Key West RECONNECT

It's easy to get caught up in the details and planning of the wedding.  Instead of seeing your fiance as your future partner in life, they begin to take on more of a role of co-organizer, co-pilot, and at times, co-conspirator!  There is so much work that goes into planning any event, but a destination wedding adds unique stress in that you have less control. 

Having a few days of fun helps remind you of why you're together and why you chose the destination you did.  Having perspective of what's important helps you not sweat the small stuff.

 

Bride tries on a hat during a fun engagement portrait session on the beach at Fort Zach REVIEW

You've likely perused tons of photos of the venue, flowers, ceremony site, video samples, photography examples, and seen beautiful displays on stunning websites from all of your favorite vendors, but there's a lot to be said about seeing those products and people in person. 

It's often easier to make a decision when you have something tangible to see, touch, and experience.  Even if you have narrowed down your remaining vendor choices to a single florist or photographer, decisions will need to be made on styles, sizes, quantities, and other details that wrap up the order and finalize the booking.

A couple shows off their engagement rings while enjoying a sweet moment together in Key West.

RE-GROUP

In addition to booking your remaining vendors, having a few days to visit with those professionals you've already hired can resolve any remaining concerns you might have, gives you some valuable face-time with the people who will have an integral part of the success of your wedding, and gives you an opportunity to make any changes if needed. 

It's a good idea to pre-schedule these meetings, and if possible, get it all done in one day.  You don't, after all, want the trip to be all work and no play!

 

Article by Karrie Porter Photography

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) destination wedding tips engagement ideas engagement photo examples engagement trip plan a trip sample engagement portraits visit wedding destination wedding planning, what to do before your wedding http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2013/11/plan-a-long-weekend-engagement-getaway Sun, 17 Nov 2013 18:18:39 GMT
WHY VIDEO SHOULD NEVER BE “ON THE CUTTING ROOM FLOOR” http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2013/8/why-video-should-never-be-on-the-cutting-room-floor Wedding video shouldn Yeah, the economy can be tough sometimes, but that doesn’t mean your wedding memories should take a back-seat.  There are so many ways to remain cost-conscious for your wedding, but too often we hear that a wedding video is considered a “luxury” that most couples forego.

Many couples see the photographer as a necessity, and the video as something they would like, but can ultimately live without.  Really?  Let’s see….budget…budget…where to spend the budget?....on one hand, upgrade to some exotic flower that no one – aside from maybe the florist – has ever heard of…or, relive one of the biggest days of your life in vivid detail for years to come?

A professionally produced wedding video is not the same as Uncle George carrying around his camcorder. A professional video will showcase moments of the wedding from perspectives not shown in the photography, and in ways that (het hem…Uncle George) don’t intrude on the photographer’s shots.  In addition to the emotion and subtleties of a moving image, the video will also share the sounds of the day…a faint sniffle during the ceremony, the cheers and excitement during the pronouncement, and the best man giving his speech. Professionals who use wireless microphones will produce a video with the best sound quality.

 

  • Choose a videographer whose style fits your personality.  Like the photographer, he or she will be intimately involved in every event throughout the day.
  • Consider whether you want a videographer that is more one-on-one, offering direction and setting up shots as the photographer would, interacting with guests for impromptu interviews and inviting on-camera feedback, or one who will work more in the background, capturing moments as they unfold.
  • The videographer and photographer often work hand-in-hand, coordinating shots and conversing about lighting. Some photographers have a videographer on staff, so it’s wise to check with them first to see if video is something you can add to your package.  But if you have already found a videographer you love, it is okay to book them separately as well. 
  • Just because your photographer’s camera can also shoot video these days, that doesn’t mean you should task your photographer with this additional responsibility.  If you want a wedding video, plan to have someone dedicated to the job.  Otherwise, you’ll end up with moments captured as stills that you wished were video, and video clips that you later wish you could put in your album as still images.  The photographer can’t do both (at least, not well!).

Discuss your style preferences with your videographer

Although we live in an increasingly digital world where people capture photos and videos on their smartphones, a wedding video captured on professional equipment and expertly edited into a story of the day becomes a unique keepsake.  The best wedding videos incorporate short, bite-sized clips of the day, highlighting the most interesting and memorable features in a way that keeps the viewer excited and interested.  So, no long drawn-out shots of every bridesmaid’s walk down the aisle…just the wait at the end of the aisle of one girl, a few strides of the next, a bashful smile of another, and the arrival to the altar of the last.  In other words, you want something with an upbeat tempo that doesn’t have you turn around to a room full of viewers who are half asleep three minutes into watching. 

A few other benefits to consider:

There are some moments during the event that are even better on video

  • When else is it possible to get all the most important people in your life together in one place (and looking their best!)?
  • Although no one wants to think of it, some of the older friends and family who attend your wedding will eventually pass on to a better place, and the wedding video often becomes a very cherished way of seeing them smile, dance, laugh, and hug you one more time.
  • There are many things happening outside your immediate surroundings that will come as a great delight later on, such as the gasps of wonder upon guests walking into the reception room, or the tears on the face of an aunt who was sitting too far back in the church pews. This is where a wedding video can prove invaluable.

When discussing your video options, state your preferences on how you like to look, and even fears about being filmed, and the videographer can no doubt find solutions that will accommodate your needs.

Modern videographers offer high-resolution, edited movies that can be watched both online and shared digitally with friends wherever they are, but also on a hard-copy DVD or Blu-Ray, so you can enjoy it on your home TV. 

Although there will always be things that have to get cut from the budget, the longevity and value offered by a beautiful wedding video should be something that are carefully considered before ruling it out completely.

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) Weddings & Romance do i need a wedding video key west key west wedding should we hire a videographer wedding budget tips wedding photographer wedding photography wedding video ideas http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2013/8/why-video-should-never-be-on-the-cutting-room-floor Thu, 29 Aug 2013 03:47:11 GMT
Beach Wedding Tips from the Knot http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/11/beach-wedding-tips-from-the-knot couple gets married in Key West with photographer Karrie Porter When I was getting married, I was constantly glued to my Knot.com account.  Now that I'm on the other end, I often find myself answering questions that I once had myself, and I still rummage through the pages of the Knot to see what's happening. 

I came across this article they wrote about tips when planning a beach wedding.  Since we service so many beach weddings, I thought I'd share!

The main points you'll learn more about relate to scouting locations and arriving early, ways to guide your guests to otherwise hard-to-find areas once they reach the location, staying flexible, and working with local experts, such as your wedding photographer or coordinator who is familiar with the Key West area.

We hope you find the information useful!  Read on!  http://beach.weddings.com/articles/beach-wedding-planning-basics.aspx

 

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) beach wedding tips destination wedding karrie porter photography key west wedding key west wedding ideas married in key west things to think about wedding planning what to do http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/11/beach-wedding-tips-from-the-knot Sat, 24 Nov 2012 04:06:15 GMT
Top Ten Timing Tips http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/11/top-ten-wedding-timing-tips Bride getting ready for the big dayHow can you know how much time you need with your photographer if you've never planned a wedding before? While some of your schedule will be dictated by how long you have access to the reception venue, what times of day your church allows ceremonies to be held, religious preferences that determine how long your ceremony will be, and (especially in Key West) the timing of natural elements such as the sunset and the tide, there are ways you can maximize your timing so that you get the most of your photographer's time.

So, to take in my Top Ten Wedding Timing Tips, continue reading...

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) destination wedding planning how to schedule wedding day karrie porter photography key west wedding photography tips wedding schedule wedding timing http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/11/top-ten-wedding-timing-tips Mon, 05 Nov 2012 20:44:17 GMT
What will my photographer wear to my wedding? http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/11/what-will-my-photographer-wear-to-my-wedding What a wedding photographer wears to a casual outdoor Key West eventIf you're getting married in Key West, you might be curious how the overall laid-back atmosphere translates to photographer dress code. While it is true that Key West is more laid back, and our dress code is, in general, less formal than most places you'll visit, a wedding is still an important event and your photographer should dress with respect to the level of formality of the wedding.

Since the majority of the weddings we shoot down here in Key West tend to be smaller, more casual, typically outdoors, typically with very few guests, and often on the beach, our dress code is understandably less stuffy than you'd find at a black-tie event in a big city ballroom.

I wanted to have some fun, so for the "official-unofficial" attire you can expect at a typical Key West wedding, continue reading.....

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) karrie porter photography key west key west photographer key west photography photographer dress code wedding attire wedding location ideas wedding photographer http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/11/what-will-my-photographer-wear-to-my-wedding Sat, 27 Oct 2012 19:45:00 GMT
Black and White in a Colorful World http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/11/black-and-white-in-a-colorful-world Sunlit bride in historic Key West home before her weddingDo photographers still shoot black and white wedding photos? As you’re planning your wedding, the question of “color versus black-and-white” may come up at some point, and it’s a good question to ask. While most modern brides are hip to the idea that their wedding images will be captured on a digital camera, it’s often uncertain as to how that affects your ability to have some of the photos “taken” in black-and-white.

To read about ways of incorporating black and white photography into your wedding, continue reading....

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) Weddings & Romance key west key west photographer key west photography wedding photographer http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/11/black-and-white-in-a-colorful-world Fri, 12 Oct 2012 19:30:00 GMT
Unique Wedding Ideas http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/8/unique-wedding-ideas I love it when I find creative stuff!  Here are a few cool ideas I stumbled across....

fingerprint wedding bands

Fingerprint wedding bands from Brent and Jess.  Check out their store at http://www.etsy.com/shop/fabuluster.  

 

paper lanterns to adorn beach weddingPaper lanterns that make great (and affordable) decorations for an outdoor beach or resort wedding here in Key West!  You can order them from www.jadetime.com . 

 

souvenier shot glasses as Key West wedding favorI was perusing the Off Beat Bride blog and came across this cool idea...especially down here in Key West where...het hem..."consumption" is....mmm hmmm....a little bit of a pasttime.  :)  You can check out more at http://offbeatbride.com/2012/08/literal-save-the-date-montage

 

chic lace veil for destination weddingAnd finally, if you're wanting a little tradition but a lot of flair, check out these stunning fashionable lace veils from Ruche!  It makes me want to have another wedding!  (to the same guy, of course! lol).  http://shopruche.com/bridal.html?utm_source=homepage&utm_content=bridal&utm_campaign=mainnav

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) Weddings & Romance karrie porter photography key west wedding ideas wedding photographer http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/8/unique-wedding-ideas Mon, 27 Aug 2012 00:54:18 GMT
A Key West Honeymoon with Ivan and Lina http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/4/A-Key-West-Honeymoon-with-Ivan-and-Lina I love watching two people in love, so when I met Ivan and Lina for the first time, I knew we were going to have a great time on our shoot.  They live in South Carolina, and wanted a weeklong getaway in paradise, so naturally they ended up in Key West!  Originally from the Ukraine, Ivan and Lina told me they’d known each other much of their lives.  It was sweet the way they shyly told me of how their friendship had blossomed into romance, and now they had made the committment to one another for the rest of their lives.

We spent about 2 hours shooting along the south end of the island, visiting first a long dirt road typically used by city service vehicles, but was a great starting point since the sun was still a little higher than ideal.  The road is lined with palm trees, so we made use of those for some nice images I typically refer to as “warm up images”.  There is always that threshold of comfort I have to cross when first working with a new client.  Down here in Key West, we so often don’t get to meet with our clients beforehand, so taking a few minutes to chat, start with some basic poses and simple directions, often helps the client feel more at ease, and gives me as the photographer a chance to get a sense of how they move and interact with each other. 

Some clients are more playful and silly, some are more laid back and chill, some are very formal….it’s important for me to shoot images that draw out the best aspects of someone’s personality and not be too far outside their comfort zone with what I ask them to do.  For example, Ivan and Lina were very sweet and affectionate, but not overly boistrous, so I found a happy medium and got them running down the beach together and standing up on top of some rough rocks for some dramatic “sky background” photos.

 

The couple were great to work with, and were very open to suggestions and ideas.  For the most part, there wasn’t anything that they weren’t up for.  Lina bravely battled the wind in her hair, which was whipping up a lot more than usual!  It did make for some great veil shots!  Her dress was very pretty, with rouching in certain places that gave it some nice texture, with a nice fit over her slender frame, with conservative touches that fit her personality perfectly.   It was a nice break from the strapless A frame we’ve seen so commonly in the past few years, regardless of its suitability!  ;)

One nice thing about this shoot was that the couple had already gotten married two days before, so Lina was not worried if her dress got a little smudged from the sand, or a little wet from the waves.  One of my biggest fears when shooting is asking a client to do something that ends up with them getting dirty or injured, so I am always mentally walking a fine line between getting unique shots without pushing the envelope too far.

Our session finished out further down the beach, utilizing a cool stone building, some bent palm trees, the seawall, and the local beach greenery.  Check out these and more in their gallery at www.kporterphotography.com/ivanlina!


]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) Weddings & Romance beach photos karrie porter photography key west key west photographer key west photography wedding location ideas wedding photo locations wedding photographer wedding photography http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/4/A-Key-West-Honeymoon-with-Ivan-and-Lina Sat, 07 Apr 2012 08:13:47 GMT
Not seeing each other – the least useful of the wedding traditions. http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/2/Not-seeing-each-other---the-least-useful-of-the-wedding-traditions- History Once upon a time, in a land far away, a girl’s family toiled for months trying to find a suitable husband for their not-so-attractive daughter.  Having no luck with the local boys’ families, who felt for sure the homely-looking girl would produce homely-looking children, the girl’s family decided to seek a suitor from villages farther away.  They heard of an eligible young bachelor, contacted his family, and the deal was done.  The boy, curious as he was, however, decided to take a trip to the girl’s village and upon arriving, caught a glimpse of her, returning home and refusing to go forward with the marriage. 

In another time and place, a father watched in frustration as his beautiful daughters ruined their chances of marriage with respectable men by cavorting with the first male specimen that they laid eyes on.  They were very beautiful indeed, and enjoyed making light of teasing the boys, which of course tempted lascivious thoughts and actions! 

So, in the interest of preventing the flight of suitable bachelors from their marriages with plain-faced girls, and preventing the unwanted coupling of unsuitable bachelors with the fair and pure – but naive – maidens, the great minds of those bygone eras decided it would be quite reasonable to instill policies that prevented potential mates from ever seeing each other.  And that is how the rule of the bride and groom not seeing each other before the wedding was born.

Ok, history lesson over.  You’re thinking “Wow, how crazy!,” or “I would never get married to someone I’d never met!”, or “Marriage is about love and respect, not looks!”  But, this is the way it was back then.  Fast forward a few hundred years.  Now, we meet our future spouse usually in college, at work, or in some other mutual social circle.  We meet, we date, sometimes we “take a break” and then get back together, we have mutual friends, common interests, and often know more than any other person about our significant other.  For some it is even more serious….we move in together, get a dog together, and live together for several years, effectively (if not consciously) “testing the waters” to see if we can really be with this person for the rest of our lives.  And while religious or spiritual beliefs keep a good number out of the pre-nuptial bedroom, it’s pretty obvious that many couples do not, and some even have – either by accident or by choice – children before deciding to marry someone. 

 

Traditions such as memorable keepsakes and a young male family member bearing the rings, add something special to the ceremony. We do all of this in today’s society, yet still, somehow, for some reason, when it comes to our wedding day, we hang desperately onto this “tradition” of not seeing each other before the wedding.  Why?  I’ve been very patient in trying to understand it, and after 10 years of shooting weddings, and seeing firsthand the difference it makes to the wedding day – not just in the photography, but in the whole demeanor of the people and the nature of the event – I can’t say I’ve come much closer to a good reason.  Now, I’m not saying I’m not a fan of traditions.  I LOVE them, and am even a tad superstitious and will knock on wood if the need arises.  For weddings, there are SO many awesome traditions that are based on some true and still-meaningful reason.  The rings, the old-new-borrowed-blue stuff, cans behind the limo, throwing rice and petals, circling the fire, the chuppah, the henna, the drums, jumping the broom….and on and on and on.  So, why do I have beef with the tradition of not seeing other before the wedding?  Probably because of all of them, it’s this one that causes more harm than good!  The other traditions contribute to the festivity, the meaning, or the sacredness of the event.  And for me as a photographer, they also contribute some great photo opp’s.   But the practice of not seeing each other before the wedding seems to have no other positive contribution toward the wedding other than being able to say “We had a traditional wedding and didn’t see each other before.”  Big woopidee doo. 

On the flip side, let me share from experience what happens when the OPPOSITE practice is followed, and the couple DOES see each other beforehand.  First, all the planning and anticipation has turned you into one big bundle of nerves come the morning of the big day.  Even the smallest ceremony with just the two of you eloping on the beach will generate feelings of jitters and nervousness, and for a grand affair hosting hundreds of people, you can multiply that by ten.  Even if you’re “calm”, your subconscious is still running wild.  So what happens first when you see each other?  You’re instantly reminded of why you’re there and who this is all about.  And when that happens, you gain perspective, all the little details fade into the background, and you can finally focus on just being there.  I’ve watched it time and time again as brides go from answering three cell phones all morning, stressing over every little nuance, asking a million question about what’s not yet done, who’s not yet arrived, which thing is still left to deal with….and suddenly, she sees her fiance, spends some time with him, and while she may still go back to check on other matters, she’s like a whole new person, much more relaxed, calm, and happy. 

The modern bride and groom should have no hesitations about seeing each other before their wedding.

Second, when you see each other before the wedding, you open up a whole new spectrum of logistics that otherwise are not possible.  Maybe you thought taking a trolley ride around town with all your bridal party would be a fun activity, but the trolley only runs until a certain time of day.  Maybe you had originally wanted to get married in one location, but for whatever reason – be it budget, availability, amenities, size, or whatever - it made more sense to go with the venue you ultimately chose.  So instead of getting married at the quaint little garden that wouldn’t fit your 100 guests, you take a morning stroll there instead.  Or, instead of dealing with the weather concerns of getting married on the beach, you ask your photographer to make a 20 minute stop at a romantic beach nearby.  The other logistical problem it solves is timing for the photography.  You’ve just spent months planning, thousands of dollars making it happen, and hired the best person you could find to capture it all.  Why limit yourself to the rushed, cookie-cutter, boring family group shots and a much shorter wham-bam session of the two of you together afterwards?  Of all the money you’ll spend on your wedding, the fee you pay to the photographer is the only one that keeps giving back for years and decades later.  If you see each other before the wedding, you allow your photographer more time to get creative, take you to some fantastic hidden gems in the city or at least make use of multiple locations on the property, and give you a huge variety of images using their utmost in artistic talent.  It also allows you the ability to concentrate on having fun, looking good, taking your time, fixing your hair and makeup ten times if needed, including your bridal party in some fun shots, and all without the mental stress that exists when you know you have people waiting on you.  EVEN when I shoot weddings where the bride has allotted an hour or even two hours between the ceremony and reception, I still ALWAYS get those nervous sidelong glances at the clock in between the amazing smiles and laughs you see in the final proofs.  Sure, we’re on a schedule even if we shoot before the wedding too, but even that includes a 30 to 45 minute buffer to still allow time for final primping before the big moment, and the subconscious effect that has is huge.

During a "first look" session, a bride stands atop a stairwell calling down to her love "Romeo and Juliet style", cracking up in the process.

Finally, seeing each other before the wedding benefits your guests.  For many of the same reasons I discussed above, the end-effect to all of this is a happier bride, a more relaxed groom, a much more opened up schedule, a day that is running smoothly and on time, and photos that aren’t rushed.  So, after the ceremony, if necessary, we can be done with family groups in ten minutes and the couple can be on their way to their reception.  What does this do?  It delights the guests that they actually get to spend time with you at your wedding.  That time you would have otherwise have been spending taking pictures can now be used for mingling at the cocktail hour, having a receiving line or going around and hugging every single person who spent the time, money and energy to be with you on this day.  Even you choose to skip those things, the least you can do is get the reception started quickly so your hungry guests can eat!  Having also been a guest at a wedding, it’s easy to admit there’s nothing more frustrating than having gone out of your way to be at someone’s event, only to be staving off hunger with party mints and club crackers for longer than should be reasonable.  So even if you don’t care about beautiful pictures or being calm or creating a smoother timeline, at least do it out of love and respect for your guests. 

 

Remember, people back in the day had good reasons for invoking this practice of not seeing each other before the wedding, but the modern couple has yet to prove to me any equally good uses for this “tradition”.  Do yourself, your wedding photos, and your guests, a favor and plan to see each other before the wedding.


]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) better wedding pictures florida keys get more out of wedding photography history behind wedding traditions key west key west wedding photography lower stress on wedding day maximize wedding photography budget wedding photographer wedding traditions http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2012/2/Not-seeing-each-other---the-least-useful-of-the-wedding-traditions- Sun, 26 Feb 2012 20:33:31 GMT
Eleven, Eleven, Eleven – Victoria and Michael - a Key Largo destination event http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2011/12/Eleven--Eleven--Eleven---Victoria-and-Michael Victoria and Michael at their Key Largo wedding in November

 Key Largo wedding photography at this gorgeous private residence.  

As do most triple-digit days, 11/11/11 gave couples around the country a reason to celebrate – their wedding that is!  Rob and I were excited to be involved in one such wedding, that of our clients Victoria and Michael.Panorama photo from the balcony of the Oceanside Drive residence where we photographed Victoria and Michael

Leaving our newest little photographer (our newborn 9 week old daughter!), for the first time, we traveled up to Key Largo for their wedding, arriving mid-afternoon to a beautiful private residence with a fun “Miami Vice” kind of flair.

Bride in Nieman Marcus for Key Largo wedding The property was amazing, featuring a lush hidden driveway leading back to a grand home on its own private peninsula jutting out into the ocean.

The bride wore a fun feathery skirted A-line strapless dress with a fun black sash.  The guys were handsome yet casual in their tan suits, and the girls looked amazing in their shimmery tropical green knee-length bridesmaids dresses.

Despite some unexpected delays, we managed to make the most of the long walk to the ceremony site by stopping en route several times to capture shots of the bride and her bridesmaids, integrating the beautiful furniture and architecture of the home.

Since the ceremony was taking place right at sunset, it was dark immediately after, so Rob and I did some fancy footwork capturing timed-exposure images of the bridal party with the water in the background, using a remote flash to fill in each person in the frame.

The reception was a lot of fun and gave us great opportunities to get some photography of the girls making a grand entrance dance, the bride doing her famous backbends, and the newly wed couple schmoozing in the glow of a flood light.

Finally, the night ended with sending up “wish balloons”.  This miniature hot-air balloons are completely biodegradable and environmentally safe, are made of a thin paper-like material over a thin frame to provide support, and when the base is lit, it fills the space up with warmed air….and….LIFTOFF!  Sure there were some duds that ended up skidding to a stop in the top of the mangroves, but those that went airborne made a beautiful site floating away over the Atlantic ocean, carrying the dreams and hopes for this new couple on the wind!


]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) Weddings & Romance florida keys photographer florida keys photography florida keys wedding karrie porter photography key largo wedding key west key west photographer key west photography key west wedding photographer key west wedding photography oceanview drive wedding places to get married sunset wedding ceremony wedding photographer wedding photography http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2011/12/Eleven--Eleven--Eleven---Victoria-and-Michael Fri, 02 Dec 2011 13:02:23 GMT
Come visit us on Lazy Way Lane! http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2011/7/Come-visit-us-on-Lazy-Way-Lane-  
RentGoPros.com (aka BFS Rentals) of Key West is now available on Lazy Way Lane at AER Photography

Lazy Way Lane near Key West Bight, where the Fury, Sebago, and several other charters leave from every day. Come by and rent a GoPro underwater camera for the day! (Image courtesy of www.conchscooter.blogspot.com) We are located in the fine art gallery for our friend Alicia of AER Photography.

Summer is in full swing, and it’s time to rent a GoPro HD camera!  Down at the Key West Bight near Schooner Wharf Bar is a little road affectionately referred to by the locals as Lazy Way Lane, and there you’ll find things like jewelry stores, an amazing pretzel place (ask for our good friends Jan and Dave), and our friend Alicia of AER Photography.  We are helping her with her shop while she’s out of town (shooting in Mexico…lucky dog), so we will be operating the GoPro rentals from there for the time being.  If you would like to rent an underwater camera, call us up (305-517-3051) to reserve one, and then stop by before your snorkel trip, scuba diving trip, fishing or spearfishing charter, to pick it up.  These are high definition cameras that do underwater photo and video.  The cameras are compact and easy to use, and prevent you from risking your own expensive camera to the salt air and moisture. 

For more information on how to rent an underwater camera for your day in Key West, go to www.rentgopros.com, or email us at rent@bondfirestudio.com.

We are also booking photography tours on the island of Key West from this location.  If you are interested in exploring the island with a professional guide and photography instructor who can help you get the best shots, show the best locations, and answer any technical photography questions, call us at 305-809-8500, go to www.keywestphototours.com, or email us at tours@bondfirestudio.com.

 

]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) For Photographers Key West Photo Tours Water Adventures best shopping key west camera captains corner fine art underwater imaegs by aer photography fury fury key west go pro camera key west key west photo tours key west photographers key west photography lazy way lane photography tours rent camera rent gopro schooner wharf scuba diving key west sea eagle sebago snorkeling key west things to do key west underwater camera underwater photography underwater photography rentals waterproof camera http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2011/7/Come-visit-us-on-Lazy-Way-Lane- Fri, 01 Jul 2011 16:30:01 GMT
Key West Underwater Camera Rentals – GoPro HD Hero http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2011/6/Key-West-Underwater-Camera-Rentals---GoPro-HD-Hero Did you know? If you are visiting Key West and will be partaking in any kind of water-related activity (that covers just about everyone right?), check out our affiliate site, www.rentgopros.com, for information on renting a

www.rentgopros.com Waterproof Camera Rental in Key West waterproof and underwater camera, the highly popular GoPro HD Hero, for your trip. You can rent one for the day, several days, or an entire week. If you’ve been thinking about purchasing a GoPro, but aren’t sure if it’s right for you and want to demo the camera first and try it out before you buy, we offer that luxury as well. Brand new, the GoPro set goes for about $300 and can be purchased downtown at Diver’s Direct at the corner of Greene and Simonton. But if you just want to use it for the day to capture your dive trips, snorkeling adventures, jet ski rides, kayak tour, or kiteboarding lesson, this is a great option. The basic rental starts at just under 30 bucks if you have your own SD card and don’t want the insurance waiver. With a 16GB SD card (more than enough space to capture everything you could possibly want to do), a chest, head, or wrist mount, a lanyard, and the damage waiver, you’re looking at about 20 dollars more.

We will gladly deliver and pick up to your hotel, charter boat, or other location of your choice. Go to www.rentgopros.com for more info and booking.


]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) For Photographers Gopro hero Key West Photo Tours Water Adventures bfs rentals bond fire studio dive photos dive the vandenburg diving key west gopro rental key west key west camera rental key west photographer key west photography kiteboarding photos photography rent rent a camera rental scuba camera snorkeling camera snorkeling photos spearfishing photos underwater camera vandenberg waterproof camera http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2011/6/Key-West-Underwater-Camera-Rentals---GoPro-HD-Hero Tue, 21 Jun 2011 11:55:38 GMT
Karrie Porter Photography featured in Bridal Magazine http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2011/2/Karrie-Porter-Photography-featured-in-Bridal-Magazine Check out the most recent edition of the Key West Citizen’s 2011 Bridal Magazine , a publication dedicated to the Key West wedding market, for an article about “How to Add Life to Wedding Photographs” by Key West photographer Karrie Porter Bond, and images from previous weddings sprinkled throughout the publication.  Your image just might be in there!

Karrie Porter Photography featured in 2011 edition of Key West Citizen Bridal Magazine

See page 15 for "Add Life to Photographs" article in 2011 Key West Citizen Bridal Magazine by Karrie Porter Bond


]]>
info@kporterphotography.com (Key West Photographer - Karrie Porter) Weddings & Romance bridal photography destination wedding florida keys key west key west photographer key west photography key west wedding wedding photographer wedding photography http://kporterphotography.com/blog/2011/2/Karrie-Porter-Photography-featured-in-Bridal-Magazine Wed, 16 Feb 2011 13:07:30 GMT