Browsing Tag


Drag Pun Goes Here by +Raven

I’ve always been a big fan of make-up. Which is maybe a little surprising, considering I hardly wear any on an everyday basis. But I’ve always thought the ability to change people was SO AMAZING.

For a while, I even thought I wanted to be a special effects make-up artist. I’m still fascinated, and most of the time at shoots, I watch the make-up artist do her thing, because it’s rather transporting.

Intern Krista invited the lot of us out to Bukrhart’s Pub, home of the Best Drag in Atlanta. {Officially!} And it was TRIUMPHANT. Having really only ever been to one or two clubs in my whole life, and never a drag club, I was STOKED. And by the way, go read her post about the show. It’s fantastic.

Watching our ladies put on their make-up was mesmerizing. I felt taken back in time. I was watching MAGIC. I was watching geisha put on their faces.

{And in the back of my head, I was taking notes on liquid eyeliner – something I’ve always made a mess of}.

Even though I’d seen pretty much the whole transformation, I was still awestruck, jaw hanging agape, when each performer came out onstage. The change was astounding. Completely gorgeous! And then they all BLEW US AWAY with their performances.

And when I say performance, I mean it. I felt completely swept up in the excitement, the music {but who isn’t by Adele & Pink?}, the fun of it all.

Ladies, performers and interns alike, thank you.  It was a freaking blast.  You.  Are all.  Awesome.

Hannah & Tate’s Awkward Session by +Raven


Hannah & Tate approached me with the desire to do an “Awkward Couple’s Session.”  You know, like

And I said HELL YES.

What’s awkward photos without some spot coloring, tiny people, and Photoshopped wings?

So, not only was the session FREAKIN’ FUN, but it was also challenging, believe it or not. Because what you have to think about is that “Awkward Couple” is just a theme. Like anything else. Like our Bloody Wedding we did. Or a zombie-themed engagement session.

And it’s NOT an excuse to be lazy, or churn out bad photography. There’s a big difference.

They were such great sports. “Hey, we’re going to do that jump shot like five more times.” “Okay!” Yeah, awesome.

And we had so much fun, we couldn’t help but get cute and funny and HILARIOUS pictures.

Thanks again, Hannah & Tate!  You.  Are.  Awesome.

You Are Powerful by +Raven

You are incredibly powerful. Do you know that?

No, like, really. I know for a fact that you don’t tell yourself that enough. Start.

I finally broke down and started reading this book on the subject of love and positive thinking recently {which I won’t name, in the hopes that I come off less like a walking ad for the book and more like a real person, haha}. And before you get your skeptical face out, hold up.

I was skeptical. And honestly, was kind of reading it as a joke. Something to make fun of {well, it’s true}. But . . . it said some cool stuff.

Most of the book is stuff I already believe anyway, but it’s neat to see it laid out in such an orderly fashion, especially by someone else. Kind of gives you some support or validation.

There are a lot of quotes – from world religions, leaders, thinkers, all kinds of people – used in the book to support and fill in certain points. And I wanted to share some of those quotes, simply because I thought they were neat, or were “WOW” moments for me. And, I kinda like you, and I like sharing stuff with you. 🙂

“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one getting burned.” – Gautama Buddha

“In the beginning there were only probabilities. The universe could only come into existence if someone observed it. It does not matter that the observers turned up several billion years later. The universe exists because we are aware of it.” – Martin Rees

And my personal favorite:

“Even after all this time, the sun never says to the earth: ‘You owe me.’ Look what happens with a Love like that! It lights the whole sky.” – Hafez

You. Are. Awesome. Now start living like it.

Heather & Johnny’s Wedding Preview by +Raven

I love laidback brides.

In fact, I refuse to shoot anyone else.  You have to be laidback, all-around awesome, and most of all, understand that if, at the end of the wedding day, you’re married, all went well.

Heather & Johnny are a lot of fun.  Their wedding was early March, and as the old adage goes: IN LIKE A LION.

The winds were ridiculous.  So strong that Heather eventually just took off her veil during the ceremony.  Completely chill about it, too.

And speaking of chill, IT WAS COLD.  During an outdoor ceremony.  Again, Heather was totally relaxed.

Johnny had a mishap with some cake the night before the wedding, and didn’t feel well AT.  ALL.  But did they let it bother them on their day?


Because they’re awesome.

And so.  Are.  You.  Thanks, Heather & Johnny.

Collaboration by +Raven

All by myself, don’t wanna be all by myself, anymore. – Celine Dion

Shoots Featured: The Curtis Blackwell Band {bluegrass, and amazing} with Intern Matt & the Cherry Bomb Boutique with Intern Krista and Intern Marie-Alice

Atlanta Editorial Photographer |

I prefer not to shoot alone.  Like, REALLLLLLY prefer not to.

Atlanta Editorial Photographer |

Can I do it? YEAH. But I like people, so if I can help it, I try not to.

Atlanta Editorial Photographer |

I love bouncing ideas off of another person, chatting about the best way to do something, getting feedback, working together. Collaboration is AWESOME.

Atlanta Editorial Photographer |

And it’s important. You can’t live inside your own head forever. Sure, it’s a nice place to visit. Necessary, even. But you can’t stay there. You’ll stagnate. And that’s the death of growth. The death of art.

Atlanta Editorial Photographer |

It’s one of the reasons I love our internship program SO much. Every 3 months, I find new people whom I love working with, and who want to work with me. People who understand me and my photography and what I’m doing in a way that most of the people I interact with on a daily basis don’t.

Atlanta Editorial Photographer |

I like shooting the same scene as someone else and challenging them, and being challenged in turn, to come up with something different. To see it in a different way, a way that’s just me.

Atlanta Editorial Photographer |

It’s awesome. Kinda like you.

Being a Boy Scout by +Raven

Being a photographer is a lot like being a Boy Scout {or so I’m told}.  It means being prepared.

Always.  FOR ANYTHING.  Especially as a wedding photographer.

It’s happened before where I’ll bring a group of interns out to shoot in some crazy condition or another, and at the end of the session, when I ask if they learned anything, etc., they responded “well, yeah, but I wouldn’t bring my clients out in the pitch black/the snow/in full sunlight/etc.”

Which really, is ridiculous.  Your client has faith in you to make the best possible images out of even the worst possible scenarios.

Not two weeks after I took some clients out in the pitch black of night to shoot them, I shot a wedding in which almost every one of the formal pictures, including those of the bride and groom, had to be shot outside at 9:00pm.

I wasn’t worried; I had just practiced this type of situation.  And everything went swimmingly.

And personally?  I think it would be amazing to get married when it’s snowing.  And I would never, EVER hire a photographer who wasn’t willing to get into knee-deep snow to get those last amazing shots on my wedding day.  Because I know that I would do that for MY brides.  In a heartbeat.

We’re not a bunch of namby-pamby’s, here.  We get into waist-deep water.  We shoot in the snow.  We shoot in the dead of the night.  We lay down, we jump around, we launch ourselves off of chairs, we fling our cameras around our heads by the straps!  {Well, maybe not that last one.  But we would if it were required and we could do it safely.}

Break out of your comfort zone.  Stop shooting only in the Golden Hour.  You know what I’m talking about.  Is it beautiful?  YES.  Is it ideal?  YES.  Is it the situation you’ll always be given?  NO.  And I certainly hope it’s not.

Do completely wacky shoots, force yourself to branch, and stretch.  Shoot in conditions you don’t think you’ll ever be in.

Because guess what?  You’ll find yourself in those same conditions again.  And you’ll be prepared.

Don’t forget: You.  Are.  Awesome.

Meeting 2012 Head-on by +Raven

Well, my turn for a new year’s post.

Since joining Pinterest a few weeks back {and yes, I’m obsessed}, I’ve seen a ton of really awesome inspirational things. Words of wisdom, little reassurances, awesome images others have taken, etc. My favorite one by far, though, was this: “My 2012 New Year’s Resolution: Be Better.”

I’ve taken it as my resolution, as well. It really covers all manner of things, all of the things I want to – when you break it down – be better at or about. Fitness, my fashion sense {which is getting better}, my photography, how I treat people every day, how I treat myself, how I spend my time.

There are a lot of really awesome things coming up in 2012 that I’m so excited about. There’s going to be a lot of traveling, including South Carolina, New Jersey, Virginia, Connecticut, and even a bit back home in Atlanta.

I plan on exploding with awesomeness this year. So, watch out. <3

You.  Are.  Awesome.

Diana & Joey’s Wedding Preview by +Raven

– Posted by Raven

Diana & Joey were going to get married next June.  Then, they realized that a big planned-out spring wedding just wasn’t them.  So they moved their wedding up by SIX MONTHS.  Then, when they found out I was available on Dec 9th, they picked their wedding date based on me.  HOW CRAZY IS THAT?

That – among so many other reasons – is why I absolutely adore Diana & Joey.

This post is going to have way more than usual.  I just couldn’t narrow down.  I love these two and their love.

Their wedding was my last for the year, and what a note to end on.  Nick and I drove to Bowie, MD to stay with family in preparation for the Annapolis wedding.  Neither of these places was anywhere we’d ever been close to, so we were psyched.  Annapolis is, in a nutshell, so cute.  Downtown is just a huge wheel with off-shooting streets lined with shops and restaurants for the spokes and the capitol in the middle as the hub.

They got married at the Marriott on the waterfront, walked in their wedding finery to the historic courthouse, took us on a mini-tour of downtown Annapolis, began their reception at Harry Browne’s {home of THE BEST cheeseburger and fries we have EVER had}, and ended it in an afterparty at Pusser’s pub back at the Marriott.

Everyone was so warm, inviting, silly, sought to include us in every way possible, time and time again made sure we ate and drank, and just generally made us truly feel like one of the family.  It was amazing.

I would totally hang out with them next time we’re in the area.

Photographer | +Raven of
Venue | Harry Brownes
Floral Design | Gateway Florists
Make up | Amie Decker Beauty
Hair Styling | Alexander Day Spa


Natalie & Robert’s Wedding Preview by +Raven

I met Natalie & Robert through a couple we had the pleasure of meeting last year, Chris & Chastity.  Since the two couples know each other through church, and therefore both chose to get married there, Nick & I had the complete and utter pleasure of shooting at the Abundant Life Church in Lithonia for the second time.

There is something so unbelievably cool about returning to a venue to shoot, especially when it means seeing past couples {hey Chris & Chas!} again.  We knew exactly where and how we wanted to shoot, and had so much fun with everyone.  At the risk of sounding like every other wedding photographer, there was so much love at this wedding, and it was just beautiful.

I teared up during the ceremony.  And parts of the reception  My tearing up isn’t much of a feat in itself, but with weddings, it’s different.  It doesn’t happen terribly often.  {I’m picky about crying at work, haha.}

This wedding, like all others, came with its own share of unique challenges.  Ones that we were only too happy to overcome.  And I don’t think that it’s a coincidence that just a few weeks before, I was shooting a couple with Intern Sooji in PITCH BLACKNESS and then I found myself shooting 25% of the formals and pretty much all of the couple’s pictures in the same situation for this wedding.  Everything is practice for something else, even when you think you’ll never use it in “real life.”  It’ll happen.  Trust me.

Natalie & Robert are ridiculously in love, completely perfect for each other, and it was a B-L-A-S-T to be a part of their wedding.

Also, Robert & his mom started their mother/son dance with tradition, then broke into a dance montage started off by Thriller.  Momma has some moves.  I’m just sayin’.

Thank you guys again, so, so, so much.

Natalie & Robert, you.  Are.  Awesome.

Miami | 2nd Shots by +Raven | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding

– Posted by +Raven [First Wedding Preview by Mark] | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay WeddingWhen I was in High School, I was a theatre geek. Still am, actually.

Though I never made it into the production classes {those which put on performances people actually attended}, I dutifully took Acting I, II, and III. I’m not going to lie, I was pretty good. My teacher always complimented me, as did the other kids in the class. | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding

But one time, we got to partner with some of the kids from the production classes. It was my first on-stage kiss, and my first kiss ever, come to think of it. A Neil Simon scene. The guy I was working with was someone I greatly admired, someone I looked up to, someone with acting chops. Our performance came and went, but the comments from my teacher always stayed with me. She said it was the best I had ever done. And she’d seen me work through scenes for four years. | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding

I remain convinced that the better the people you surround yourself with, the better you are. I felt challenged when I was acting with him. Felt like I could be even better. Felt myself BE better.

And it was the same when I worked with Mark for the first time, down in Miami, Florida for Liz & Cristina’s wedding. Wait, first time? I know, it’s hard to believe. But Mark and I hadn’t ever shot a wedding together until Miami. Wouldn’t know it from how we worked together, though. | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding
Working with Mark for the first time was a pleasure. I love seeing how other people run shoots, especially weddings. And Mark? He’s fast. I mean damned fast. I got to see how he works a wedding. How those shots come to life.

It seems weird, I know, but I’m still learning. I don’t ever plan on stopping, either. | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding

Liz & Cristina are . . . how can I put this? FRAKKING AMAZING. Even before we met, in fact as soon as she found out I was shooting her wedding with Mark, she contacted me, listing the things we have in common and the reasons we should be friends. I fell head over heels for these two. And she introduced me to The Supersizers, something for which I shall always be grateful.

Recently, I found myself wondering what to call my partner, Nick. “Boyfriend” seems almost contrived, and really doesn’t even begin to scrape the surface of our relationship or my feelings for him. After meeting Liz & Cristina, I decided on “partner”. To see the two of them together is to completely and utterly understand how love is supposed to work. | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding

I know, love isn’t “supposed” to be anything. But they are it. They were more than together. Even before they were symbolically united as one person, they were two halves of a whole, and it was so radiantly obvious. They knew each other to an extent I was blown away by. Just being in the same room as them – hell, just in the same room as ONE of them – you feel brighter. They really are partners in life {and in crime!}. | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding

As we photographed the wedding weekend, I was a lucky witness to how they complemented each other, matched perfectly, worked together. The wedding was so beautiful, so well put together, so orchestrated while still being incredibly laidback.

Their wedding was one of the most absolutely happy events I’ve ever seen. Everyone was amazing. And I almost cried, TWICE. And although I’m a crybaby, weddings just don’t tend to get me often. Except this one. | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding | Miami Wedding Photographers | Gay Wedding

Thank you, Liz & Cristina. Thank you. I wish we could hang out EVERY DAY. Because you’re that awesome.