Family Video Makes Memories Sparkle- Lask Family Picnic

I’ve started offering video as part of Family Portrait Sessions. Video is unlike any other medium in that it captures movement, expressions as they change, and interactions that can’t be transferred in to still photos. I look back on old family videos that my parents got transferred to DVD from old film reels in wonder. It fascinates me to see my grandparents and watch them as they play with tiny versions of me and my brother. Moments that I have seen only in photos are now coming to life before me. They seem so real, so tangible. I feel I know them more. It’s memories like these that I am so passionate about capturing. And that’s why I LOVE the power of video. I am now bringing that power into Family Sessions.

Nothing will ever be as sweet as looking back 20-30-50 years down the road and remembering how your kids moved around on unsteady feet as they were growing as a toddler. Or the playful, silly things your 7 year old does, and the faces they make. Or the brooding, ever growing intelligence that is incubating under a teenagers skin. These are all moments that are going to fade with time…unless you capture them. And that’s what these family videos will do.

During my session with Shannon and her family, I decided to experiment with capturing some of these small moments. And I LOVED the results. I’ve been doing it with weddings for years! Seeing how photography and video can combine to create a total picture of the days events. But I had never done it with other portraits before. Now, I can capture some of those special life moments between family. And I’m so excited to share it with you!

It also serves another purpose. Rather than sending family and friends a link to an album, this is a more personal, and involved way to share your photo experience with them. At the click of a button they are transported into the session, seeing the video clips and some of the favorite shots from the session come to life.

Thank you so much to the Lask Family for allowing me into their amazing lives for one day. May these memories bring you closer together with laughter and smiles.

I’d love to work with you and your family! Contact me today!

To see the blog post with the Lask Family photos, click HERE.

Lask Family - A Family Portrait Session with a Winter Picnic Outside

This was a truly special photo session. Shannon planned a family outdoor picnic (IN THE WINTER!) with food and decor to rival Martha Stewart! It was amazing. And it celebrated her beautiful family now, as well as the year anniversary of her dearly beloved’s passing, Mike.

Luckily we planned it on a not TOO freezing day, so we were able to enjoy being outside. Darwin was running around with a very large stick, which whacked a few heads and fingers, but I got the greatest shot of him looking like a world-wise wizard, or avid hiker, take your pick. Well worth it! Elanor was so full of energy and spirit. We had a great time jumping, and posing, and her foot always wound up in the air with her tongue out. Very cute, and I love capturing the true personality of the kids in my photos. That way, when you look back on them 10-20-30 years from now, you can say “Yup, that was them, always with their tongue out!”. She showed me the locket with a picture of her daddy in it; Always close to her heart and dangling in the middle of the group photos, which was so perfect.

It was so easy to capture the spirit and loving energy between this family. Hugs passed around, bubbles being chased, Darwin stealing grapes and sushi through the shoot, and Elanor running around in her dress and tights, which had such a cute hole in the bum. I wish I had gotten a shot of that.

Thank you Shannon for asking me to be a part of your family this day! I hope these pictures bring you joy and peace throughout your lives together.

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I loved this series of Eleanor. She has so much radiant personality.

I saw her touching the locket all the time, opening and closing it, swinging it up as she jumped. I asked her what was inside, she said “My daddy.”

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How do you keep everyone’s attention throughout a family group photo? BUBBLES! Although sometimes the adults are more crazy about them than the kids :)

How do you keep everyone’s attention throughout a family group photo? BUBBLES! Although sometimes the adults are more crazy about them than the kids :)

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Rebecca + Connor - St. John in the Wilderness & Black Tie Afterparty

I would have to say that no two wedding videos are ever the same. There’s no cookie cutter recipe that I use, and from beginning to end it totally depends on the couple and the events that unfold. Nothing could be more true than this one! It was a perfect duo of sentiment and classic beauty mixed with uninhibited joy and fun. So how to tackle the video and make ONE highlight? I decided it simply had to be….both!

They had a beautiful ceremony planned at St. John in the Wilderness, with an impressive bridal party: 10 on the bride side and 13 on the grooms. Each bridesmaid held a gorgeous bouquet of flowers. These flowers were everywhere, bathing the ceremony and reception in beauty and color. Every pew was packed full of elegant wedding guests, laughing and crying along with the ceremony.

Then followed by the reception at Rebecca’s parent’s home in Flat Rock, NC. She had given me a tour of the reception site (her ) many months before her wedding date. She pointed where the white tents were gonna be set up, and described a “ladder dance” of which I had never heard before. How can there be so many people on the dance floor you would need a ladder? Post reception….it became clear. This was a rockin’ party with everyone busting a groove on the dance floor and not stopping until late into the night. Rebecca and her Dad started it off with “Who’s That Lady?”, with Connor and Mom jiving to “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)”. Not to be outdone, Rebecca and Connor’s first dance was to “Give It To Me Baby” by Rick James. The AMAZING live band, The Black and Blue Effect, was one of the most talented and spectacular bands I’ve seen at a wedding in my career. The singers, the musicians, the amount of songs they knew, their energy! and an OUTFIT CHANGE halfway through the performance! Never seen that before! Rebecca had requested NO slow songs for the reception, and they kept up the pace keeping everyone partying along with them.

So here is my highlight video for this amazing couple. Thank you for choosing me to be your wedding videographer! Rebecca wrote me after her full wedding video and said, “We quite literally laughed and cried our way through it.” That’s the greatest compliment I could ever receive. May you laugh and cry (tears of joy of course) for many more years to come. And I hope you eel the love, joy and happiness of these moments every time you watch your videos. Many happy wishes to you both!

Amazing Vendors

Ceremony Site- St. John in the Wilderness

Flowers- Bloom Room

Caterer- Colorful Palate

Cake- 50/fifty

Hair/Makeup- Lola salon

Band- Black and Blue Experience with East Coast Entertainment

Classic Event Rentals

Photographer- Jeremy Russell Photography

Event Coordinator/Planner- Katy Nevel

Family Photos and Senior Portraits at Christmas in Asheville, NC

It is so important to capture the memories of FAMILY! Years go by so fast, and before you know it you have no up to date photos of your kids, your dog, your grandparents…the important people in your life.

I was so happy when Jill and Jacqui contacted me to work with them. We had a DOUBLE goal for our photo session; Family Photos with everyone AND senior photos of Nathan, the soon to be grad! I’d like to say we met on a sunny warm afternoon catching the golden light of sunset, but actually it was cold and raining LOL. Being right at Christmas when everyone was together, it was time to brave the conditions and go for it. I’m not afraid of a little sprinkle, and luckily, they were ready to go as well. 70% chance of percipitation can’t scare me off! No really, through my experience over the years I have been able to work with the moment and make it work. Also knowing the best spots to work in where weather conditions might be spotty.

We got some great shots of everyone together and then Nathan let me to lead him around (in the light cold sprinkling rain) posing him here and there. Thanks for trusting me Nathan! I think we got some great shots.

Don’t forget to capture the memories in your life that are important to you. Family is such a beautiful thing and I’m honored to document these wonderful moments. Thanks Heck Family!! Congrats to you Nathan and best of luck in your college adventure.

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Amanda + Jessie Wedding at Forge Valley Event Center- An Autumnal Wonderland

The colors were at their peak just in time for the wedding of Amanda and Jesse at the beautiful Forge Valley Event Center in Mills River, NC. In a season with many an outdoor wedding foiled by weather, this was a picture perfect day; Cool and breezy, perfect for a lake side wedding surrounded by red, yellow and orange foliage.

Amanda’s gorgeous dress got two reveals, with a Father First Look and then a Bridesmaid Reveal. Then on to her First Touch with soon to be hubby just before they headed off to the ceremony. They exchanged letters and had a touching and love-filled moment where they held hands and read their special words side by side. I’ve had plenty of First Looks, which I LOVE, but this was my First Touch. They got to share a special moment without seeing each other, and we got more opportunities for photos. It’s a win win!

This was an amazing Wedding Venue. The ceremony was gorgeous outside with the lake and mountains surrounding it. Then off to the reception for dancing, festivities and a super fun photo booth. Amanda and Jesse danced the night away, shared their first piece of cake together, and were surrounded by their beloved guests with sparklers on their way out, excited to start their lives together.

When I first met Amanda and Jesse they were so excited that adding wedding video to their day was a possibility. I love working with couples to make sure that their vision can come true. I believe so passionately in wedding video as a way to capture the memories. I still watch mine almost 12 years later. So enjoy! Laugh, Love and feel the Joy.

Vendor Love

Venue - Forge Valley Event Center

Hair- Kristen Exum

Makeup- Jill Robinson 

Bridal Dress/Details- Aurora Bridal out of Melbourne Florida 

Groom’s Attire and/or Groomsmen- Thomas and Sons Tuxedos

Catering- The Ugly Pig BBQ 

DJ- Paff Daddy DJ and Entertainment 

Photographer- Crystal Pafford 

Event Planner- Ashley Clayton

Day of Coordinator- Ashley Clayton

Sarah + Joey in a Misty Mountaintop Wedding at The Cabin Ridge in Hendersonville, NC

Sarah and Joseph got married at an amazing hilltop wedding venue, The Cabin Ridge, on a foggy and chilly day in October. This is my second time at this venue and it’s amazing every time. It was beautifully, magical how the mist covered the landscape and hung around like a giddy wedding guest.

The ceremony took place inside, in front of a warm and cozy fireplace decorated with flowers and lights. The bride and groom were the warmest in the room for sure, from standing right in front of the fire, and I think by their undying love for each other. Exchanging of letters and personalize wedding vows made the ceremony feel special and touched the hearts of everyone attending. After family photos, where everyone DID brave the cold and wind for one large group photo outside, it was dinner and speeches. The bride and groom greeted each table, which I always think is so wonderful, and then first dances began.

Sarah and Joey started at opposite sides of the venue, and met in the middle for a super sweet choreographed dance. Not to be outdone, the love that beamed during the Father/Daughter dance brought a tear to my eye for sure. It always gets me. I think of my dance at my wedding more than 11 years ago now. Gosh I JUST LOVE WEDDINGS!

The sparkler exit was particularly magical with all the mist and fog accumulating in the night air. This amazing couple took their first steps towards a new life of love, commitment and devotion to each other.

Thank you to Sarah and Joey for choosing me to be your wedding videographer! And for choosing me and my partner, Myriah, with Falcon and Wolf Weddings, to do both photo and video for your special day! May you smile and laugh for many years to come watching your memories unfold again and again.

Vendor Love

Wedding Venue - The Cabin Ridge
Hair and Make-up- Marie Churilla
Flowers- Choy’s Flowers & Ikebana
Bridal Dress or details- The Lily Rose Bridal Shop, dress is Heather by Watters
Groom’s Attire and/or Groomsmen-  Men’s Warehouse
Catering- Hubba Hubba Smokehouse
DJ- Pol VanRhee
Day of Coordinator- Andy Owensby
Photographer- Myriah Wood with Falcon and Wolf Weddings

Cake- Sweets of Lake Lure - Ennis Julian

(Studio Misha is Co-Founder of Falcon and Wolf Weddings with Myriah to provide photo and video together)

Karyn and Kyle- A Playful and Loving Wedding at Highland Lake

Karyn and Kyle were by far my most playful and fun couple of the season. I was so excited that they chose me to be their wedding photographer. They didn’t want a big to do. So it was a day that was all about family and concentrated on the simple ceremony that started it all.

A beautiful handmade wooden arbor was center stage in front of the lake at Highland Lake Cove in Flat Rock. The color had just started bursting, with orange, yellow, and a little bit of red sparkling like fireworks in the tree tops. While Karyn was getting ready with Mom and other family, flower girls were princessing around with silver crowns and practicing for their procession. And that’s how it all began. The little gents came bearing rings, and flower girls sprinkled their petals paving the way for the beautiful bride. After her dad walked her down the aisle, he imparted some special words to her, whispering in her ear, causing surprising tears to flow. It was a special moment for sure. Her brother facilitated the nuptials, vows were exchanged, and rings were given. Time for cake and champagne!

We went out in the autumn leaves for bride and groom pics, out by the lake for some tender moments, and ended it all with a bridal piggy back ride back to the venue. It wasn’t in our original plan to do more photos but when Karyn and Kyle told me they wanted some photos downtown and there was ALSO a mural that was really important to them, I felt like it was just super important to capture it. Especially once I saw the pic of their favorite mural. “Play Every Day” I mean it doesn’t get any better then that! When you’re a wedding photographer, and you are blessed with a couple that wants to do crazy, fun things….you take every advantage!

So our downtown bride and groom photo session was born! Starting at the mural, then going to some crosswalks on the way to downtown center. On the way back, I was inspired by Karyn wearing her new hubbies jacket and the secret flask that was brought out. I gave them the idea, and the Tossing Bouquet in the Air Like A Rockstar photo was born. It was so EPIC!

Thank you to Karyn and Kyle for going along with my crazy photo ideas. And for being so loving and vulnerable in your bride and groom portrait session. It was an honor to be your wedding photographer. And even though you wanted a small ceremony with no fuss, no muss, you still valued capturing these special moments with photography. I wish you many joyful and playful years ahead. Enjoy each other and remember to PLAY EVERY DAY!

Vendor Love

Venue- Highland Lake Cove

Cake- Sams Club

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There were so many family photos I had put in a slideshow.

Because it was just family at the ceremony, we took plenty of extra time capturing everyone together. YAY for family photos!

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Angela + Katie - Seasons on Love at Oglebay

I felt SO honored to be able to take part in this wedding between Katie and Angela.  I was privileged enough to photograph their engagement session when they were here visiting Asheville last year.  We really had a great time.  Super early shoot in Dupont State Forest where the mist was rising off the water at Hoooker Falls, making it so ethereal.  We laughed about coming up with poses and then abandoning those poses to play and have fun, showing off their love style in the setting of the fall leaves.  It’s always the best when I get to have an engagement session with a couple. #1 you get to know them which I think allows for better photographs, and #2 We learn how to communicate in “photo speak”.  Meaning I get to learn what works and what doesn’t, good sides to the camera, angles, and verbal cues that work best with our flow.  So ALL that aside, let’s just say we had a blast and I was bummed when their wedding was out of town and I wasn’t going to be their wedding photographer. HOWEVER, the stars aligned and I was able to fit them in, between my FOUR other weddings in September! And traveled out to work with them on this SUPER special day!  (Some of our amazing engagement session is here for you to peruse as well!)

The venue was really nice, and I have to say, the deer walking around was like magic. Since I was staying there I got to meet and help out a lot of the family during rehearsal, setting up the venue, and snapping some pics of the festivities. It was nice to see it all happening before the official day. The wedding day was perfect! Weather was perfect and the temperature decided to take a nice dip so we were all cool and loving it. Angela made Katie cry when she sent her a beautiful ring with a compass on it during her early morning makeup session. Katie said, “That’s three already today!” And that’s how the morning went. It was one sentimental loving moment to the next. These two ladies just couldn’t wait to get married! The love was infectious and so wonderful to witness.

Katie surprised Angela with a “Seasons of Love” serenade from the group during the ceremony. It’s one of Angela’s favorite songs, and it held a deep meaning which played in well with the ceremony. Bubbles and applause carried the newly married couple out of the ceremony, and Mrs. and Mrs. Dunn started their lives together as one forever. We partied on into the night, sharing epic dances (yes, there was Uptown Funk as Father/Daughter Dance!) and many, many loving kisses stolen between the new couple. 

Thank you again Angela and Katie for bringing me on this journey with you as your engagement photographer and THEN your wedding photographer. I was so happy to be there and see it all unfold. May these memories bring you endless joy through the years, as you share this amazing life together. I wish you a wonderful Season of Love!


Vendor Love

Venue- Oglebay Resort

Hair and Makeup- Vanessa Sogan Beuty FX

Catering - Bad Axe BBQ

Cake and Cupcakes- Mama C’s Bakery and Deli

DJ- Soundtech DJ Services

Photography- Studio Misha


Engagement Session 2017

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Wedding Day 2018

I don’t think I’ll ever get a Bride hand feeding a deer again. It was so magical and fit with the day so well. This resort is home to A LOT of deer that are extremely friendly as you can see.

I don’t think I’ll ever get a Bride hand feeding a deer again. It was so magical and fit with the day so well. This resort is home to A LOT of deer that are extremely friendly as you can see.

As we were taking these photos in a field by her getting ready cabin, Angela, the bride to be, drove up to drop someone off. It was unexpected and we dove for cover!! I literally almost fell on top of her while I was holding my hands out and shielding her from view and she was crouching in the grass. It was crazy and made for a laughable moment we got to talk about later on. And NO, Angela did not see her!

As we were taking these photos in a field by her getting ready cabin, Angela, the bride to be, drove up to drop someone off. It was unexpected and we dove for cover!! I literally almost fell on top of her while I was holding my hands out and shielding her from view and she was crouching in the grass. It was crazy and made for a laughable moment we got to talk about later on. And NO, Angela did not see her!

My first wedding in the round! This was really cool and made a very intimate and special circle around these two special people tying the knot.

My first wedding in the round! This was really cool and made a very intimate and special circle around these two special people tying the knot.

They walked in together on either side of the circle. They couldn’t take their eyes off of each other.

They walked in together on either side of the circle. They couldn’t take their eyes off of each other.

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The Father/Daughter dance was to “Uptown Funk”. It was pretty epic.

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Anna + George - A Backyard Wedding of Blooms, Family and True Love

A backyard wedding is such a wonderful way to celebrate the sanctity of Marriage. Especially when the mother of the groom is a master gardener and flower arranger! It was so beautiful! Hydrangeas were hung in great bunches over the arch, white folding chairs were laid out with a little aisle in the middle, and a harpist play softly off the side, all awaiting the happy couple.

Purple dresses of varying shades and flower crowns made these already beautiful girls of the family look like woodland princesses. They joy of getting ready in the bridal suite was palpable. Hugs flowed warmly all around as the beautiful bride put on the final touches to her look. With nothing but close family in attendance it was really all about the family photos! When do you get everyone together dressed nicely and all photo ready? We took great advantage and had fun doing it.

George watched Anna come down the aisle with a glowing smile on his face. The ceremony was full of loving words from everyone, talking about how much they all meant to each other, and what this life held for them moving forward. For me, this is what a wedding ceremony is all about! I feel so privileged to be a witness to true honest love in this world, and not only to witness, but capture it for them to cherish forever. It just fills a special place in my heart.

After many a tear and laughing through tears (my favorite emotion!), smiles and hugs, and vows that sealed their lives together in this life, cheers and hugs abounded. Champagne was popped and of course, I had to break up the party to get more family photos LOL. The photographer has to be the buzz kill sometimes to get the photos, right?

Congrats to George and Anna, and the loving families that will be there for them on this journey. I am so happy that you asked me to be your wedding photographer. May the love and happiness you feel today shine through the years.

Hunter + Luke - Cabin Ridge Mountain Top Wedding

 
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This is one of the many weddings where I paired up with my partner and friend, Myriah Wood, to shoot together as Falcon and Wolf Weddings. We team up so we can offer photo AND video packages together, and Hunter and Luke are proof that our couples out there are enjoying the benefits of this partnership. I was so happy when Hunter wanted to add a Wedding Video to her day as well as a Ceremony Video, so we had full all wedding day amazingness covered!

Here’s a little wedding day teaser video for this amazing September couple, Hunter and Luke. Their wedding, a top a beautiful mountain at The Cabin Ridge Wedding Venue was full of fun and joy despite the hurricane looming just around the corner! They handled it like a seasoned wedding couple…together and with a smile. Then after some amazing BBQ (Alle, Heather and Shelbi rocked it out!), tear-jerkingly touching dances, a cake shmoosh, and some fun games put on my DJ Seven One, there was a grande (someone sprinkly although you’d never know it) Sparkler Exit! So much fun.

Congratulations and may you always weather the storms of life together, and preferably cuddling by a warm fire :)

Vendor Love

Wedding Venue - The Cabin Ridge

Catering- Moe’s Original BBQ

Wedding Cake and Cupcakes- The Baker’s Box

Flowers- The Flower Market DJ - DJ Seven One

Makeup- Lisa Haney Hair- Julia Vargas

Wedding Dress- Fabulous Frocks (Huntersville, NC)

Groom and Groomsmen Suits- Men’s Wearhouse

Videography- Studio Misha working in partnership with Falcon and Wolf Weddings

Photographer- Myriah Wood (Assistants - Cody Brown and Eric Schmiedecke