2017 Year In Review – Florida Wedding Photographer

2017 was my best year yet!  Both personally and in my business.  First of all, I GOT MARRIED! (which if you’re interested, you can see more of here, courtesy of my amazing photographer Jenna who is the only person after countless hours of searching that I felt totally comfortable with handing over the memories of my big day to.  Obsessed with her.)  Back to the thankfulness – I really owe it to all of these people pictured below.  I’m so lucky to have some of the sweetest, most down to earth clients who let me in to their big moments – don’t think for a second that I take it for granted.  From beach weddings in Florida all the way to the Bahamas, to weddings up in New England and engagements everywhere in between, to maternity sessions early on in the year and newborn sessions with the same family later in the year – all of these moments, at least pieces of them, I now share with these beautiful people and for that I’m so grateful :)

2018 is going to be a big one!  So far it includes work in Florida, New Jersey, North Carolina, South Carolina, The Bahamas and The Caribbean, and we haven’t even begun yet!  I can’t wait for all of the moments I’ll be able to capture and to spend more time with all of my kickass couples.  I’m the luckiest.

Last but certainly not least, I’d like to give a HUGE thank you not only to my clients, but to my friends and family who time after time after inviting me to weekend things (knowing I probably can’t go) invite me anyway.  Thanks for pushing girls nights to weekdays so I can be a part of it.  Thank you to my husband for pushing me to be better, go bigger, work smarter not harder, and really push to make my dreams come true.  He’s behind me every step of the way and I’m so happy I get to do life with him!

I’ve got some big plans for 2018-2019 which I can’t wait to start developing more so I can tell you guys :) but for now, I’m just so stoked for all thats to come!  And to follow suit with my new blogging resolution, my 2017 takeaways are as follows:

Bride and Groom Takeaway: this one comes from both personal experience and watching my couples plan and carry through their big day.  When it comes to spending, it gets out of control.  FAST.  Like, so fast.  For some reason in the world of weddings everything becomes relative and before you know it you’re saying things like, “oh wow that’s only 200 bucks lets do it”, when in reality $200 is still a lot of money!  It’s weird, but it happens.  My takeway is this: spend on the bit ticket items that add VALUE, not just a photo to a pinterest board.  When I say value, I mean either adding value to the day-of experience for you and your guests, or value in the terms of something fulfilling a big-wish item.  If your heart is set on a certain flower, and it’s important to you, thats personal value.  If photos are a main priority (which, obviously, they should be! they’re the only thing that lasts from your day!) then spend more there, and maybe less elsewhere.  For me, it came down to the fact that custom cocktail napkins were just something that people would wipe their faces on and throw away and although I found a super cute one on pinterest, it didn’t add enough value to be important enough to spend $200 on.  To recap: Prioritize.  Recognize the value.  Go from there. :)

Photographer Takeaway: This one sounds silly but try not to rely on locations as a crutch.  It’s super easy to backup and get a wide shot on the beach and have it be pretty enough to print a canvas out of.  But I’ve really found that it’s so important to get closer and really interact with your couples in order to get the real stuff.  Also, something little like taking multiple photos of the same pose, but at different crops and from different areas in relation to the couple (i.e. one in front, one from a higher angle using live view, one from behind and maybe a closer side crop) can help give you diversity in your shots without stumbling over different pose ideas anymore than you need to.  It’s basic, but it’s an easy quick tip that you’ll appreciate when you’re culling :)

I hope everyone has a safe, healthy happy New Year!  Be thankful.  Be present.  Be positive.  Spend less, give more.  Wake earlier, get active.  Cuddle.  Say I love you.  Pause to be happy.

Love you all!

x, Chels