Aaron + Katlyn 06.21.08

What a busy summer it has been so far!  I have another wedding today but I’m trying to get caught up on blog posts before I leave for my trips (Port Clinton, OH for the next couple days and then I’ll be heading to Louisiana at the end of the week).  Hope everyone’s 4th of July was fantastic!

Aaron + Katlyn got married on June 21st in the picturesque Kirtland, Ohio.  It is absolutely beautiful there and I really want to go back in my “off” time and just shoot for fun there.  I have NEVER seen so many churches in my life!!  Religion is a big deal here (the city was the headquarters for the Church of the Latter-Day Saints) and it is still a big destination for Mormans (I nearly got hit on the way to the wedding by a van-bus from Utah!!!).  It is just the neatest city and I ADORE all the historic buildings.

They got married at Aaron’s father’s church and the service was beautiful!  It is always that much more special when the person marrying you is a relation or friend.  This is my third wedding where a father has married the couple and they’ve all been wonderfully special.

As with almost every day in June, it was raining off and on but we got super lucky and were able to get some pictures outside with the bridal party after the ceremony.  Aaron and Katlyn had searched the area for a beautiful place for pictures that didn’t cost an arm and a leg and we ended up at the local library which was perfect!  We didn’t have a lot of time but we were able to work with what we had and it was perfect!

Enjoy their pictures!


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Amber + Andrew 06.14.08

I have known Amber for a few years through my personal journal, we randomly met on a Sex and the City group of all things ironically enough.  She’s been with me (at least virtually!) from my hobby and love of photography turning into a business and when she became engaged I was honored to be asked to be her photographer!  Her and Andrew got married in Wooster, Ohio at the OARDC Butterfly Garden and got VERY lucky with the weather.  This month has been quite the nasty one when it comes to weather and I think it has been supposed to rain on just about every Saturday since May.  The rain clouds cleared out just in time for their outdoor ceremony and it could not have been a more beautiful setting.  The butterflies were flitting around the butterfly garden and the flowers were all in bloom!  It was BEAUTIFUL!  I highly reccomend this location to any and all brides in the area!  The reception was just as lovely and I was VERY excited to see an old friend… the same cake from Adam + Anna’s wedding last year from West Side Bakery!  YUM!  It was delicious!  The bride and groom had a lovely time and the location again was perfect!  Thanks guys for letting me share in your special day!

Hairstylist:  Hairbenders
Ceremony Location:  OARDC Butterfly Garden
Reception Location:  Hilton Garden Inn
Florist:  Green Thumb Floral
Cake:  West Side Bakery
Dj:  JR the DJ


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  • […] Andrew and Amber June 14, 2008 […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Amber and I have known each other for years online through an online journal. She’s been with me really since the beginning and was one of the people that urged me to make a living with my photography and get away from the medical field that I loathed. She was one of the first to book me and I was honestly terrified since I knew her expectations were high. However at the end of the day I knew I had some great images and Amber was thrilled! Her ceremony was in SUCH a gorgeous location – a butterfly garden – that it was hard to NOT get a beautiful shot. Here is their original blog. […]ReplyCancel

  • […] year at Amber’s wedding, Trisha was Amber’s hairstylist. She had just got engaged and asked for a card… the […]ReplyCancel

Corey Talks: Formals, Tips to Make Them Quick!

I’m hoping to keep this a Sunday tradition over here on my blog…. so if you have any suggestions for topics please let me know!

Formals, Tips to Make Them Quick!

One problem I seem to run into again and again is that formals are taking a lot longer than the bride and groom budgeted time for and it is leaving less FUN time to play with me outside of the church.  Most of you have booked me for my photojournalistic approach to your day and not for the posed shots that your Mom and Dad had when they got married.  So, when your time gets cut short and we can’t play as much, I feel that you haven’t got what you paid for from me and you are sad at the end of the day because you didn’t get as many pics as you had hoped.  Keep in mind that I do everything I can to get through the formals and to our play time – but without help from the bride and groom I can’t always guarantee that we can do it without arriving later at your reception than planned.  So below are some tips from me to make sure we get our time together!

1.  Add 30 minutes at least to the time you THINK it will take for pictures!  Most brides and grooms think an hour after the ceremony ends is sufficient time to take pictures.  However, most fail to realize that even with a grand exit, people never leave as quickly from the ceremony venue as you think they will.  People get to chatting with friends and families and time goes by and you are still waiting for them to leave.  Also, if you are doing a recieving line, that takes a LOT longer than you expect it will.  I don’t think I’ve had a bride yet turn to me and say “gosh that went quick!.”  Same thing with the formals before the ceremony, someone is always running late, someone didn’t get the right tux etc.  You will be thankful for that half hour buffer! 

2.  Know your bustle!  Another huge time consumer is the bustle.  Practice it in the store at least twice and practice it again the day before or the day of so things run smoothly.   Have at least two people that know how to do it incase one person is too busy when you want bustled.  You may think it isn’t such a big deal now but that is probably one of the biggest time munchers! 

3.  Let Family Know Who is in the Pictures!   Make sure that everyone knows before the big day if they are wanted or expected for formal pictures and when they are needed.  This includes the bridesmaids and groomsman.  Make sure if it is before, that everyone knows what time they have to show up READY by  and if after, that they need to stay and not leave with the crowds.  Most often grandparents leave because they didn’t count themselves as “immediate family” and then you have a shot at the reception with them but it’s not quite the same.  So make sure EVERYONE knows that they are wanted.

4.  End Pre Ceremony Formals 30 Minutes Before Arrival Time!  Another huge time sucker is when guests start to arrive as we are taking our formals before the ceremony starts.  It’s a temptation to talk to you, congratulate you and then start wanting pictures with you, their family and their friends.  I am more than willing to take them – but each one of those shots you hadn’t planned on because Aunt Betsy wasn’t supposed to be there until an hour later will eat into your time you had set aside for pictures with your friends.  If you say yes to their request for a picture, I cannot say no. 

5.  Have a Plan of Action!  Going along with number 3 – have a plan of action of the set up of pictures that you want.  I do not accept shot lists (the ring, the ring in my hand, the ring in his hand, him picking up the ring type lists) but what I do like are the lists that let me know the groupings that you want.  Me and the bridesmaids, me and my parents type list.  This then lets me know ahead of time where we need to start and how things need to roll.  I will come up with how to pose you, but if I am already able to know that I need your family and the family dog, I will be that much ahead of the game making things run that much smoother. 

6.  Just Me…  I really hate to say this, but I’m going to have to say it.  To ensure that not only your formal pictures go fast but that also they are quality shots I do need to ask that you ask your friends and family to hold back their urge to take pictures alongside of me.  Not only does this take extra time from your formals by having to wait on up to 20 people to take their shot of the pose (no kidding, it’s happened many times to me and other photographer friends) but the other problem is that almost 100% of the time when there are other people taking pictures I do not have all eyes looking at me for the pose.  I can tell everyone to look at me but naturally you are going to most likely look at your camera, your best friend etc. than me – a virtual stranger.  If this request makes your friends and family upset, I do at least ask that they wait until I am finished taking my shot.  When they are shooting at the same time I am, their flashes can ruin my shot when my flash goes off at the same time making everyone ghost people. 

7.  Start Big, Go Small.  My main goal is to whittle down the people staying afterwards for formals by taking the largest group shots first and allowing those people to leave as I work through the group.  This way your guests can head on to the reception and it is less people to slow down the process.  So make sure everyone knows that they’ll be staying for shots but they will be free to leave as soon as they are over so to plan carpooling accordingly.  My goal is to end with just the group going out and taking the fun shots afterwards so if the bridal party is going with, let them know that they will be last for the formals in the church. 

8.  Ask the Expert!  When you are drawing up your timeline for the day, feel free to call me, shoot me an email or whatnot to ask me how long you think you will need for formals.  It all depends on your bridal party and family size for what I would suggest.   Typically I say 1 hour for formals, 30-45 minutes for the fun shots (again depending on what you want).  

Thanks for taking the time to read this and I hope that maybe this helps your day run a bit smoother and enables you to have time to enjoy your husband and have some fun times with me!! 

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  • MCJune 30, 2008 - 12:31 PM

    This is very helpful Corey!

    How do you feel about doing ‘fun shots’ and bridal party formals BEFORE the wedding? For our wedding, we were hoping to take some fun photos around the city with the bridal party a few hours before the ceremony starts so that the only pics we would need to take during the ‘cocktail hour’ were the larger family formals–not groomsmen/bridesmaids etc. and maybe more of bride&groom.

    For example–for a wedding that begins at 6:30 p.m.–photos with the girls from 3:30-4:30…photos with the guys from 4:30-5:15-ish. Then a break before…


  • CoreyJune 30, 2008 - 12:54 PM

    MC That is absolutely fine with me, I love that idea in a perfect world! However most brides are not so willing to go out into the world and have something happen to their dress! Sounds like a fun plan to me!!!!ReplyCancel

  • StephanieJuly 18, 2008 - 10:20 AM

    This is so well-written, and so true. If you don’t mind, I’d love to post a link to this blog entry on my blog. I have said many of these things before, but you’ve said it much better, and in much more detail. Kudos!ReplyCancel

  • CoreyJuly 18, 2008 - 12:13 PM

    Stephanie Thank you for your kind comments, you absolutely may post a link!ReplyCancel

  • […] have touched on this topic briefly in the past but after this (almost finished) busy season of weddings, I feel that I am going to need to make […]ReplyCancel