Wedding Season 2015 is (almost) in the books

I started this “little” side hustle in early 2013 without really knowing what to expect.  To say I am pleasantly surprised is probably a bit of an understatement.

30+ weddings later, Brooke and Bryn Photography is turning out to be a pretty legit operation.  We even have business licenses, insurance and pay taxes (none of which make me “happy” – since giving away money is sort of the opposite of what we’re trying to do! But they are definite indicators that we are playing with the big kids).

We are just wrapping up delivery on our last 2 weddings and family sessions, and already starting on engagement sessions for our 2015 couples.  Is this for real?

I had originally planned on posting my favorite pictures from every wedding this year.  And then I remembered, our pro blog is seriously neglected during the wedding season and could probably use a “best of 2014” post.  So instead, I decided to grab some of my fave non-wedding shots!  Enjoy!

I shot a sweet-sixteen party at a yacht club in Marin and brought Nick along as my 2nd shooter.  The cake was delicious.  We ended up getting quite a bit to take home.  Perks!

sweet sixteen san francisco marin photography This family just adopted a little puppy and wanted to document the puppy-ness in all its glory.  I can’t wait for the “now and then” re-shoot where she’s the same size but the boxer is 4 times as tall!  Cuteness overload for sure.

2014-Nick and Nicole-0096-2-X2 Senior photos underneath my favorite tree.

2014-Morgan-0007-X2 I had danced with Tory for a couple of years.  We were often “partnered” due to our similar heights.  I’m nowhere near as graceful and flexible as she, but was pretty pumped to do a ballet themed senior photo shoot!

2014-Tory-0115-2-X2 Took this shot at a friends wedding.  Succulents as bouquets = genius.

2014-Jen-Austin-0004 Little Sophie.  She never fussed.  But it took her quite some time before she finally closed her eyes and napped.  What a doll.

2014-Schmidt-1052-X2 Can you believe Lindsay has 4 kids?!  She looks amazing, right?!  Lindsay and I actually went to kindergarten together.  Yes.  Kindergarten.  Her beautiful fam recently moved to the bay area and I was so excited (and slightly nervous) to capture her family of 6!  The kids were amazing and so much fun!

2014-Soetaert-Family-0030-2-XL think this may be my favorite picture. So many stars had to align for this to work – and it was one of the last shots of the day.

livermore family photography And this little beauty from a wedding cruise around the bay (this time as guests!).

2014-Aubrey-Jonathan-0226-X2 And this last one just cracks me up.  I don’t always realize how I look to others when I’m taking photos.

2014-Aubrey-Jonathan-0040-X2 It’s been a really crazy ride thus far and I can’t wait to see what 2015 holds!

We’re Legit

Many of you saw this yesterday when I posted it on instagram.  But it’s worth a repeat.

Brooke and I are getting pretty serious over here.  We’re actually not too shabby at this whole photography thing.  So we decided to up our game a bit (well, we really just HATE burning DVDs…I mean, what year is it anyways?!).  So we invested in some fun USBs.  But not just ANY USBs, bamboo USBs.  I know.  Right?!  We so fancy!

I kinda can’t wait to send off our first wedding on these little guys.  Packaged super cute (because that’s half the fun of it!).

For those out there that have ever hired a pro photographer for one reason or another – what fun touches did they throw in that you loved?

Just Some Pictures

I’m in Albuquerque this week, eating more green chilis than any single person should consume in a lifetime. I’ve also been busy taking pictures so I thought I’d throw a few of my recent faves up!

This one showed up on FB a week or 2 ago. As tough as kids and pets can be, they can also provide some of the cutest photos ever. Give me a 5 year old and a bulldog any day of the week (not really, but it was fun!).

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This little girl is going to be turning 2 and will soon be a big sister! She’s the cutest.

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Speaking of adorable pets? How about a boxer puppy. Yeah. I know. Cuteness overload. Nick’s first comment was that they should recreate this photo in 5 years. I’m there!

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I guess this is how I look when I’m taking photos. Sorry for the close up, Nick.

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I’m not usually one for landscape photography, but was particularly pleased with how this one turned out. Golden gate is in the way back, with the bay bridge up front. You have to be on a boat to get this one! Happy Wednesday!

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Stylish Camera Bag

I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect, stylish bag for my DSLR.  A bag that doesn’t scream or even peep “I’m a camera bag.”  The bag needed to fit in seamlessly with my purse collection!  This was a tough task.

The Claremont, by Lo & Sons was on the short list, at $300! But it’s only available via a wait list, and I’m impatient.

camera_crossbody_783x485_spring2013 And I was also lusting over the Palma and the Chelsea by ONA – $329 and $369 respectively.

palma_front_590x420_1 chelsea_black_front_590x420_1 The Chelsea was probably the front runner – and most expensive.  Go figure.  I have expensive taste.  I think I get it from my grandma :)

The toughest part about finding a camera bag – especially a cute one – is trying it on.  These bags don’t seem to be offered in stores.  So you can’t see how your equipment fits.  My Camera is bigger than your average DSLR, so I wasn’t sure how it would fit.  I wanted to touch the bag.

So for the past 6 months I’ve hemmed and hawed over a handful of beautiful, expensive camera bags.

And then I went to the outlets on Friday.  And found the perfect bag! A Zac Posen bag no less!  It was the perfect size for my camera insert.  So I snatched it up!  And it was even on sale! When I showed it to Nick he said, “don’t tell me how much it cost!” It was the cheapest of the 3 :)

I have a timbuk2 XS Snoop and it holds my 5D MkIII with a lens and 1 extra lens without a problem.  So pumped for my new bag and excited to sport it at an upcoming wedding, have to hold down my reputation as the stylish girl!!

Picture of Nick

He’s my model. Grudgingly.

Last year, when my new camera came in the mail – at o’dark thirty – he posed for a few minutes outside so I could see how it performed in low light.  Yeah…..that was a really nerdy thing to say.

When I wanted to practice sunset shots, I made him stand outside and pose.

But every once in awhile, I get a keeper.  I think this is a new fave.  He said he didn’t like it.  But I think he’s being too critical.  And for anyone with a good memory and a keen eye, you might think this is all he wears – it’s a common cold weather outfit!

2014-Cabin-0075-2 copy And in case you want more than just a picture of Nick on this Monday morning, here’s a picture of Mochi and Willie.  Ooooh, and if you need an easy way to remember how to pronounce SOCHI, it’s just Mochi with an S!

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So….I got a new camera AND I was the luckiest girl ever!

As part of my new side hustle, I upgraded my camera. Big girl style. Not messing around anymore and can’t be happier with the results!

Had a quick photoshoot with my favorite little boy over the weekend, and was pretty pleased with the results!

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Oh, and that part about me being the luckiest girls EVER?! Guess who started walking. Yep! That’s right, not many kids get their first steps documented! I think it was the new camera :)

I don’t wake up looking this awesome

Do you like my title? Thought you would :)

I’ve been busy playing photographer the past few days, but decided that a photography related post would be good!

I took a few photos of my friend’s little girl this past weekend. She (my friend, not the baby) was interested in what my SOOC shots looked like. SOOC = straight out of camera. Which is horribly embarassing. Because the shots SOOC look like poop. I have a friend, Will, and his pictures look nearly perfect SOOC. To be fair, he plays with a lot of the settings and I just wait and mess with the image later.

So here you go! Like the title of the post implies, the SOOC RAW image is akin to rolling out of bed sans makeup and lots of bed head. After a little lightroom makeup, increasing exposure, contrast, and playing with a few other settings, voila (if you’re truly interested, let me know….I’m choosing not to bore most people).

2013.9.13-Birthdays-0226-2-2 For anyone interested – I shot this on my Canon 60D with a 50mm lens. For those of you who went out and bought a DSLR to make your pictures look better, do yourself a favor and buy the 50mm f/1.4. It doesn’t zoom but it will change your life.

So I’ve been a little busy lately…..

Can you tell?

The good news, is that it’s for a super good reason.

You all know how much I like taking photos.  Right?

And you know how much I like my friend, Brooke.  Right?

And we all know how much I love weddings.  Right?

Do we see where this is going?

…….drum roll…….

Brooke and I started our own little wedding photography biz!

Yep.

Crazy, right?

We actually don’t suck at it.  I swear!

For anyone interested, we started a website (it’s basically a blog) to help get our name out there.  So far we’ve done 4 weddings together and a couple more separately.

http://brookeandbryn.com/

We’ve got another 5ish this year and are already getting booked for 2014.

We even attended a wedding fair as vendors – huge difference between these and engineering career fairs.  Let. Me. Tell. You!

It was at Wente.  Super swanky.

We even setup a facebook page.  And if you feel so inclined, I’d love it if you “liked” it.

https://www.facebook.com/BrookeAndBrynPhotography

So far it’s been lots of hard work – more than I think either of us anticipated – but it’s also been a ton of fun!  Not planning on quitting the day job anytime soon, but it’s a definite side hustle.

It’s now the peak of wedding season, so my evenings are spent either photographing or editing.  Which leaves minimal blog time.  But don’t worry, I still plan on posting at least a few times a week.

The weeks already half way over!  I sure love holidays on Mondays!!

Seattle for Grandma’s Birthday

My grandma turned 92 a few weeks ago.  Yeah, 92!  Like a boss!

We (Stace and I) decided to take her to the symphony for her birthday, so I was back in Seattle over the weekend.

Since neither Stace nor myself are avid symphony goers, we opted for the Cirque de Soleil version.  A partial orchestra plays while some cirque acrobats do their thing.  Very entertaining!

Here are some of the highlights.

A (blurry) pic by the usher at Benaroya, but it’s really cute so I still wanted to show you.

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And then a selfie.

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And then another one where we told her to make a funny face.

photo 5 She’s so funny!

Back at grandma’s place, we looked at some old photos.  Here’s the g’master on her wedding day.  She can’t remember who the best man was.  Haha.

And we ended the night with Stacey showing us her crazy toes.

My toes can’t do that.  Can yours?

Best grandma-ism of the weekend:

After I told her how much my haircut cost. “I could cut that in 2 seconds and wouldn’t cost you a cent.”  And while she’s saying it, she’s making little snipping motions with her fingers.  She’s the best!

My First Photo Walk

While at WDS, I attended a meetup.  This is huge for me, folks.  I went totally alone.  Thankfully I had my trusty camera to throw in front of my face in case I needed to be anti social.  Don’t worry, I ended up meeting more people on that 1 walk than the entire weekend combined (well, almost).

The meetup was put on by Darlene, of Digital Photo Mentor.  Free camera advice and an evening enjoying the sites?  Count me in!

So here’s the thing.  I don’t really “get” photo walks.  To be fair, this was my first.  I have a hard time taking pictures that don’t include people, but I also have a tough time taking pictures of people I don’t know.  I feel like I need to ask their permission, but once you ask, the moment is lost.  Such a dilemma!

Here’s what I ended up with.

2013-Portland-3 2013-Portland-4 2013-Portland-2 2013-Portland-1 2013-Portland-5 2013-Portland-6 This last one was my fave.  Why can’t I get more girls in hats to stand in pockets of sunlight by random food carts!