Tuesday, September 30, 2014

"Black Widow" Portrait Session

Sometimes it's fun just to do a "me" project -- and believe me, I have some serious pet projects in mind that I'd love to get going!

This one was, oddly enough, inspired by a hat.

I was shopping for Halloween stuff for my own costume (which is not scary in the least unless you have an irrational fear of colorful ballerinas) when I came across this awesome black hat with a veil on it.

Mentally, I started jumping up and down a little bit.  (Okay, okay...there was probably a little bit of physical jumping as well.  Or at least a fair amount of bounciness.  I admit it.  I'm not subtle.  When I get excited, I squeal.)  I decided that I absolutely, positively MUST have that hat!  I already knew what I would do with it, images immediately came to mind.

And thus the "Black Widow" shoot was born.

All I needed was a model.  And I found one, and she was absolutely wonderful!  (Seriously, you're gonna see her show up again.  I've got plans for this gal.)

We ended up doing some stuff for me and some stuff for her -- only seemed fair.  And what we ultimately ended up with was two completely different and complimentary look.

First, the "black" look. The stark, dramatic, somewhat-haunting-and-spooky look.  Obviously, that was mine.


Then we switched to a lighter, more playful little white dress for her.

I can't wait to work with this model again!  We can have WAY too much fun with future shoots.


Come see more of my portrait work here!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Wedding Wish-List Wednesday: The Breakers at Palm Beach

For me, nothing quite gets me so giddy as the beautiful elegance of an upscale wedding.  (Hello?  Elegance?  It's kinda my thing!)

For sheer opulence, luxury, and take-your-breath-away value...ladies and gentlemen, I give you my next "Wedding Wish-List" item, The Breakers Resort at Palm Beach, Florida!

This is what their wedding website has to say about what they can offer their brides:

"Whether indoors or outdoors‚ The Breakers has myriad of breathtaking locations to suit your personal taste. From stunning oceanfront settings and lush gardens to magnificent ballrooms‚ we can accommodate ceremonies and receptions for 25 to 800 guests. Our one–of–a–kind venues set the perfect stage for your once–in–a–lifetime celebration."

 Please note the plural "BALLROOMS."  That's right.  There's more than one.

And they're incredible.

Try the Venetian Ballroom for example.  "With stunning floor to ceiling windows overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, the Venetian Ballroom is one of The Breakers’ largest ballrooms. The 25-foot-high space glows with six chandeliers, custom fabrics and golden tones."  This gets a big ol' WOW! from me!  Gorgeous in the extreme, and I am itching to photograph a bride there.

Next, we have the Mediterranean Ballroom -- and a part of me just wants to cry.  "Modeled after the loggias of Italian villas, the Romanesque Mediterranean Ballroom was originally the hotel’s Grand Loggia. The elaborate fresco-painted renaissance ceilings portray paintings of the sky, with large Venetian-style chandeliers and tall, arched windows."  So basically, it's like a little piece of Italy right in the midst of Florida.  Um...yes, please?

And, let us not forget, the lovely Ponce de Leon Ballroom -- with its nine chandeliers and view of a tropical garden.

On top of all of this magnificence, you have the Gold Room (amazing); The Circle (wow); The Magnolia Room (so romantic); The Courtyard (nice)...or, why not try a full-on beach wedding at their Ocean Gazebo instead?

Soooo many opportunities here!  My mind just goes totally crazy.  I love it!


Planning a luxury wedding?  Looking for a photographer to perfectly capture that romance of your wedding memories?  Come and check out my website!  Simple Elegance By Laura

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Loving Autumn

Well, it's that time of year!  Welcome, my friends, to the first day of Fall!

Autumn really is one of my favorite times of year.  Personally, I think it has a great element of romance to it.  There is a charm about autumn.  And there's just so much to love about this particular season.

Here's a list of some of my own favorite things about Autumn:

*Hot chocolate    (loaded with mini-marshmallows, of course)
 *Halloween    (I mean, come on -- fun costumes and free candy! What's not to love?)
 *Hayrides    (say what you want about how cheesy hayrides are, I think they're AWESOME!)
 *Thanksgiving dinner    (bring on the mashed potatoes! Oh, yeah, and the turkey and stuffing...)
*Pumpkin pie    (don't forget the whipped cream!)
*Pumpkin pie ICE CREAM    (all hail Baskin Robbins!)
*Sweaters    (talk about cozy and comforting)
*"Punkin' Patches"    (it's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!)
*Crisp fall air    (it's just beautiful this time of year, no doubt about it)
*Carving jack-o-lanterns    (even if it's kinda yucky working with all those seeds)
*Scarves and peacoats    (I love autumn fashion!)
*The start of the Holiday Season    (nope, I don't care how much you nay-sayers want to whine about how long the holidays last...I eat it up!)
*Pumpkin bread    (what can I say?  I love my pumpkin products!)
*Jumping in piles of leaves    (the only way to make up for having to rake them)
*Caramel apples    (just...yum!)
*County fairs    (can we bring back this tradition BIG-TIME?! We don't get enough of this pastime anymore!)
*Holiday candy    ('nuff said)
*Scary movies    (what better excuse to snuggle with your sweetheart?)
*Rainstorms    (I LOVE rain!)
*Apple butter    (Oh.  My.  Gosh.)
*Campfires    (roasting marshmallows!)

And, of course...FALL COLORS!


So, what's YOUR favorite thing about Autumn?

Friday, September 19, 2014

"Yo Ho! Yo Ho! A Pirate's Life For Me!"

Thought I'd take a break from lots of wedding posts and enjoy a bit of fun on this festive Friday -- or rather, TALK LIKE A PIRATE DAY!

This is one of those random silly holidays that I just really love.  I think it's important to find things in life to celebrate and enjoy, and if it takes a bit of pirate-ese to make that happen, I'm not one to argue.

So, since we talked about Disney World earlier this week, I thought I'd put up some favorite shots of the classic Disney ride, "Pirates of the Caribbean."

(Incidentally...there are some little spots throughout this ride that I often think, "Oo!  That'd be a cool place to photograph a bride!"  Yeah, I know.  It's a compulsion, what can I say?)

At any rate, AHOY, MATEYS!  What say ye to a bit o' piracy?  Say goodbye to the landlubbers and welcome aboard, them what wants the life of the high seas!

Drink up, me hearties!  Yo ho!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Wedding Wish-List Wednesday: Disney World

Everyone out there has dreams.  Photographers are no exception!  We all have places we'd love to go to photograph a wedding, or vendors we'd love to work with.  We all crave new inspiration, new concepts, and new experiences to broaden our own horizons, challenge ourselves, and keep the creative juices flowing.

This particular photographer has a whole lotta dreams.  As not only a photographer, but also a travel addict and a hopeless romantic to boot, there are so many things I'd like to do, so many places (literally and figuratively) that I'd love to take my business.

To that end, I begin a new series of blog posts: "Wedding Wish-List Wednesdays."  These will be filled with my hopes and dreams -- some of them possibly rather far-fetched, but you can do that in dreams...


So, remember that awesome wedding I did in Disneyland back in May?

Disneyland Wedding

Well, now I'd like to move on to the next big Disney adventure and tackle the Magic Kingdom at Disney World!

Seriously?  Photographing a bride in front of this iconic castle would be a literal dream come true.  "A dream is a wish your heart makes," right?  Isn't Disney World where you are supposed to believe in dreams coming true?  :-)

And this is one I have had for almost ten years now, virtually since I started as a photographer.  I want to be part of the dream weddings that happen at the Happiest Place On Earth.  (Seriously...for those who know me, can you imagine anything more perfect?!)

So here's to dreams!  May we all keep wishing them!


Come and peruse more favorite from my portfolio!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Portraits of a Classy Lady (Part II)

Remember that awesome model from the last post?  Well, we did more than one series of her in this fabulous photo shoot.  We decided to really let the model come out in her, and we tried some artistic things later on in the session.

This "blond bombshell" is just stunning and I hope I get to work with her again sometime.  It was one of those sessions in which both of us played off of each other really well, bouncing ideas and working in tandem to create the best photography session we could.  And I must say, I am thrilled with the results!

I'll let you in on a little secret -- my favorite shots from the entire series are near the end, when we were playing with a little bit of sparkly chiffon I brought with me.  It was originally intended to accent the creamy tones in her skin as well as the gold in her hair, but when I played with the settings a bit, I went more for a look to augment her astoundingly blue eyes.  (Seriously, the girl has amazing eyes!)  What happened in the end resulted in one of my personal favorite shots, with these haunting blue tones to go with the look she gave me around the folds of the scarf.


Come check out lots more from my online portfolio here: