Published: Real Maine Weddings magazine and giveaway announcement

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It's that time of year when last year's wedding glossies are moved aside to make room for fresh inspiration and editors' hand-picked trend alerts that all newly engaged couples clamour for when starting their wedding planning (that was my first move when I got engaged. I'm not the only one who did that, right? The most important "wedding binder" was soon after!). We're pleased to be featured in the region's finest magazines and will be sharing those with you this week.

In addition to seeing Kate and Dave's Kennebunk River Club boat recessional, Erin and Peter's reception decor, Amanda and Dimitri's cake and Geri and Eric's birch tree cake in Real Maine Weddings magazine, there is also a call to action for a fantastic opportunity we're excited to share with you!!

We were delighted when RMW editor Melanie asked us to be the exclusive photography studio for their annual wedding giveaway, taking place in Portland on November 2, 2012! Yes, that's right, a f-r-e-e wedding for one lucky couple! To register, you just need to upload a 2 minute video to YouTube sharing why you wanted to be married in this city that we adore. Readers will help pick things like your invitations, flowers, rings and even your honeymoon over the upcoming months. We'll be there to photograph it all, including your rehearsal dinner at The Regency and your ceremony at Grace! Intrigued? Click here to learn more. The deadline for registering is coming up quickly: Friday, March 9th.

Winter engagement session at French's Point in Stockton Springs, Maine

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French's Point recently ran a Facebook sweepstakes offering four engaged couples the chance to win a weekend getaway at their cozy farm accommodations, cocktails on the patio (with heaters and blankets!), a lobster dinner, and the next day, an engagement session! Our whole team was supposed to go, but sidelined by a snowstorm decided it was best if just J made the trip. Each couple rotated through 30 minute time blocks and we love what he came up with. French's Point is offering the same contest again this weekend, so be sure to like their page on Facebook.

What J had to say:
Each of the ladies had a make-up session and then I started with each couple taking natural light portraits in front of the windows to get everyone a little used to being photographed. It was terrific light! Since it was 25 degrees and snowing outside, we went out couple by couple and posed under some covered overhangs for some cuddly, intimate images to start. What was great was that all four couples were very adventurous and not at all afraid of the cold, so we explored the property more than I would have thought given the weather! We used some of the signature French's Point landmarks including the gazebo, but because of the weather (a whiteout!) I searched for spots with more definition in the background as well. To engage the engagees, I offered some direction and silly prompts as needed early in each session. I find when I'm a little goofy couples tend to loosen up and relax with each other. It's not easy being photographed! When things are more light hearted, they tend to (almost) forget the camera is there. By starting with some close proximity poses and then moving further back, each of the couple's personalities really came out. Like most couples who may be hesitant to be photographed at first, everyone was a ham by the end! Congratulations, everyone!

Portland, Maine, winter engagement session

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We're working on a design update for this here 'lil blog. After 7 years, I think it's time. :) Once ready, it will feature the voices of all of our photographers who are excited to share their recent work, photography tips, and random little visual nuggets from their personal lives. For now, I'll be sure to alert you when it's someone other than me writing so as to not confuse you.

Image manager and second photographer for the last two years, Denise is now shooting as a principal photographer and has a very full calendar of weddings coming up. Below she recounts a recent engagement session. You can read more about the experience from the bride's perspective today on Love and Lobster here.

Take it away, Denise!


I had prodded this couple about doing an engagement shoot no less than four times when I finally nailed them down on a chilly Sunday afternoon earlier this month.  It wasn’t that they were against the idea. They just had so many other things to do and there would always be time later, right?  I even heard that the groom-to-be, Nick, was hoping to get out of the shoot that day to have a video game marathon with his friend!

How would I know this?  Said friend happens to be my husband, Jon.  And the bride-to-be is my twin sister, Jackie.   I assured Jon that he needed to be unavailable for the afternoon and finally got Nick and Jackie to get in their most stylish cold weather clothing and head to the Old Port.  At this point I felt a little like I was dragging them there and was concerned that it would show in their images.   But, as I looked for my framing and did some test shots I noticed they were getting rather snuggly.  Yes, I had asked them to sit together but I don’t think I had said they needed to be THAT close. 

As I guided them in their poses and moved them into pretty doorways along cobble stoned streets these two had no trouble looking adorable in front of my camera.  They may have been joking about how their feet were freezing or how Jackie’s hair wouldn’t stay out of her face, but in the images I just saw so much love.  At one point I told them I was going to scoot across the street and shoot them from farther away, and would they please do some smooching for these ones?  Well, when I turned around on the opposite sidewalk, they weren’t waiting for me to be ready with my camera.   

As the winter light was quickly fading we hurried over to the Eastern Prom where these two had gotten engaged.  I asked them to stand at the top of the hill, silhouetted against the last remaining light, as I ran to get in position for a wider shot.   Even though I felt like I was racing against time I had a feeling these images would be special.  They turned out to be some of my favorite photos of the day.

It may have taken some prodding to get them here, but I was so glad I did.  Their engagement session gave Nick and Jackie time to just enjoy being together and in love at such a special time in their lives.   I feel lucky to have been the one to capture it for them in images.  As a photographer I ended the session feeling fulfilled, and as a sister I felt so utterly grateful that these two found each other.  


A little silly outside of where they ate the night of the proposal, Fore Street.

Little Will up on skis

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Have you met my husband J? If yes, this post won't surprise you. He can rattle off the number of days he's skied (I personally can't remember but it's definitely over a thousand- and on the west coast, he'll be sure to clarify), the details of the best runs like he's telling you what he just ate for breakfast, and one knee surgery to remind him of his passion for this fun winter sport. Me? I started skiing when I was five and much preferred to go straight down rather than waste my time with turns. But once I graduated from college and moved to DC, my skiing days dwindled. I'm sad to say I haven't been since becoming a business owner- something about getting older and adventure sports that seems too risky. Clearly that will be changing in the years ahead as our little guy took his first spin around the house on my family's well-worn children's skis this morning. He loved it! As did we. Skiing before walking? Now that's something to surely note in his baby book.   


Sweet Caroline

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Sugar and spice and everything nice, that's what little girls are made of.

2008 couple Joanna and Joel are parents to sweet Caroline, and are expecting a little sister to join the family in the spring. One morning while daddy was at work, mommy- the one often behind the camera- had me over to capture their little bond and Caroline's curiosity.

Brothers

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Sweet. Smart. Polite. Interesting. I'll be one lucky mama if my son grows up to be as lovely as these two boys. Kudos to you, dear Judy.

Imperfect perfect family portraits

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When I was little, we had a family portrait taken every year. I don't recall liking it until I was old enough to understand that outfit changes were actually fun, sometime by the tween years, I'm sure. Before that I had a scowl in every family portrait and it wasn't just from the super bowl cut I was sporting. I definitely didn't want to be told what to do, and honestly, is there any other time in a child's life when the pressure is on to be as adorable as possible on demand? Because in real life, wasn't I always?

Lifestyle portraits lend themselves to capturing real life, in all its unpredictable candid awesomeness. From the attempted formal poses that often illicit the most protest from even the cutest three year olds, to the more relaxed playful "playdate with a camera" posture, you never quite know how it's going to go. And for me, that's what keeps it interesting and always up for the challenge. Thanks Justin, Jess, Nate and John for the invitation. xo

When a formal pose turns into tickling baby brother's toes. And gathering the children together on the arm chair just isn't what one had in mind. Somehow the imperfect portraits always end up perfect anyway.
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