Thoughts From a Client : Tips for Finding a Photographer and LOVING Your Images!

Okay, I’ve told you OVER and OVER again how I have the very best clients…and HERE is a prime example! Rachael reached out to me a few weeks ago and told me that she would be open to writing a blog about her experience working with me – of course I said “YES”! These are HER words. Unedited…You’re going to love what she has to share with you!

Hi! I’m Rachael, wife to Michael & mom to my sweet Oakley girl. I reached out to Kelsey a little over two years ago to photograph my wedding and here I am –  a forever Kelsey Lynne Photography client! I have now done 7 shoots with her + Kyle since that very first inquiry.

That being said – I have had a lot of major life events happen since then…engagement, wedding, & baby. You’re probably thinking this girl is crazy and REALLY likes to get photos taken of herself…..well actually I do LOVE it! Not because I feel comfortable in front of the camera, or that photoshoots are easy or inexpensive, or even end up being perfectly how I imagined them to turnout…but because they are important and some of the best memories I could every wish to have hanging in my house or have in albums on my bookshelves.

Get out there and get some photos taken! Don’t wait for a birthday or a Christmas card or a wedding, take photos with the people you love. And don’t just do it once!  Do it every year –  or every two years. It’s so easy to be satisfied with iPhone photos, which honestly can turn out great sometimes. But there is something to be said about getting dressed up and spending a half hour or hour once every year and documenting the love and happiness that your growing family is today. 

Don’t get me wrong, getting ready for a photo shoot can be stressful! I always stress about wanting to have the PERFECT outfits for an upcoming shoot, and honestly I’m happy every time if I follow these few simple tips.

  1. I try and find the most over the top outfit for myself (wife/mom) and then coordinate everyone else around me. I don’t think that spending a lot of money on clothes is important as long as it’s a little bit dressier then what you would wear on a daily basis and most importantly that it makes you feel comfortable and beautiful. I believe that starting with the wife/mom’s outfit first is best because it gives you a place to begin and “coordinate” around. 
  2. Men and boys are easy to dress, once I pick out what I’m wearing I just have to find a button up and shoes for my husband to match. Again I always recommend dressing up for the occasion, you can find my husband in dirty jeans and a Carhaart shirt any other day of the week but he is comfortable wearing a button down as well. I usually put my husband in a button down shirt he is comfortable in and honestly if I could convince him to wear a sport coat too I think that look is classic. 
  3. Then, I dress my daughter last because finding kids clothes that are dressy and inexpensive can be quite easy.  
  4. Last, and MOST important don’t try and match each other’s colors/patterns/styles perfectly. That being said, don’t get too crazy but mix it up a little and don’t be too plain…. Kelsey has a great blog post on dressing for a photo shoot (linked here)

Now comes the day of the shoot…. this is where I get stressed if I don’t plan a little ahead the day or two before. It only takes a few minutes to gather everyone’s clothes to iron and hang in one spot and you will thank me for this tip! Shower, do your hair, makeup and you won’t even have to worry about “finding” your outfit….it will all be laying out and ready to go.

If you’re still reading, this right here is the NUMBER ONE most important thing I could possibly recommend to someone when they are thinking about getting photos taken…

Find a compatible photographer that you can be comfortable, calm, and have fun around. Find a photographer that you want to sit and chat with once your pictures are done being taken until it’s too dark to talk anymore. Find a photographer that’s more like a friend and that you can’t pull your husband away from talking too just to actually take the pictures. THIS you guys, this is the most important.

This is why I have done so many shoots with Kelsey and Kyle, because they are this photographer for us. They are our friends and our supporters and give endless encouragement and compliments when getting in front of a camera. My husband HATES taking photos, like ‘beg him to take a selfie on a night out’ kind of hate for photos….but he doesn’t fight me when it comes time for our yearly or occasion shoot with Kelsey. This isn’t a sales pitch for Kelsey Lynne Photography at all (although if I haven’t sold you by now I’m disappointed in myself…haha!) but more a reminder how important it is not to just find the most convenient or inexpensive photographer, but one you are comfortable with. I PROMISE you will like your photos so much more!  

I found Kelsey because I thought her pictures were gorgeous when I saw a friend from high school’s wedding photos she did…but I go back to her because she is my friend and that in turn gives me the most beautiful pictures I could ever ask for! I believe that personal recommendations are the best way to find any type of service so I hope this helps anyone reading!


Do We Need an Engagement Session?

The Engagement Session.

Do you need one? Do you even WANT one? What’s the big deal? Is it something you can live without?

Let me break down the reasons why the Engagement session is one of the best ways you can ensure to LOVE your wedding photos!

#1 : Get to Know Your Wedding Photographer

Every photographer works (shoots) differently. I have photographer friends, and they are wonderful! But we each have our own style and way of doing things. Your wedding day is one of the MOST important days in your life and the photos are going to be something you care about for years and years to come. Having a photographer there who you click with is very important.

This is one of the reasons that I highly recommend using your wedding photographer to photograph engagement photos. Even if you have a friend who has offered a free session – take it! But, don’t use it in replace of a session with your wedding photographer. Getting to know how YOUR photographer functions, photographs, & communicates will make you feel comfortable with them on the wedding day!

Your photographer is with you from when you are putting on your makeup & getting dressed – all the way until you are saying goodbye and getting in the car to drive away. It’s important you WANT them to be with you for these moments. If your photographer doesn’t make you feel comfortable? BAD SIGN. On your wedding day, you want to be surrounded by family & friends – your photographer should be one of them.

#2 : It allows you to get comfortable in front of the camera.

It is not uncommon for my clients to express a little anxiety about being photographed. Even us photographers can get a little nervous about being in front of the camera. The engagement session is like a trial run. It allows you to get used to how it feels to have a camera on you for more than just one photo at a birthday party.

It also allows you & your fiancé to get comfortable with a little PDA while being photographed. On a wedding day, there are family & friends around – this is the perfect time to get used to giving a kiss, or being snuggled up while having photos taken. The engagement session is very low stress & provides a way for you to be affectionate without an audience. Then – once the wedding day arrives, you will have seen just HOW good the photos look & will be eager to get snuggled up because you know just how sweet it is!

#3 : GREAT Pictures!

-Weddings are full of details. Guest books, invitations, thank you cards, wedding websites, bridal showers, and the list goes on! I have found that a lot of my brides like to use engagement sessions as “Save the Dates” or even in their invitations! I have also had brides use photos as decorations around the wedding, in slideshows, and they even have made an album of their engagement photos for friends to sign as a guestbook. By having some pretty photos of you and your fiancé, it could help out with little details. Who knows when you might need a beautiful photo!

#4 : It allows the GROOM to feel comfortable on the wedding day.

Most of the time – it is the bride who is doing the communicating with me regarding the wedding day. But grooms also feel nervous about being photographed, even if they don’t always show it. This is a way for the groom to get some time to know me in a relaxed setting & will make him feel better about the wedding day!

5.) You Will Learn What STYLE of Image You Love The Most

Each couple is different and the favorite images vary in style. Some of my couples love a candid photo where they are laughing. Others prefer a sweet and romantic photo that involves being wrapped up tight in an embrace. The engagement session will give you a variety of images so that you can see which style of photo you gravitate towards. I love when my clients tell me “I LOVE WHEN……” so that I can make sure to give them images in the style they prefer the most!

Now that you know the details! Let’s see the results! Here are some of my FAVORITE engagement photos!

So, let’s get YOUR engagement session on the calendar! Fill out the Contact Form on the website & I’ll get some open dates over to you!