Two Badass Wedding Venues in Houston

Two Badass Wedding Venues in Houston

These two badass wedding venues in Houston are very different from each other, like in my previous blog. I love featuring venues that are totally different, so you get a good idea as to the variety across Houston. Both of these venues have a totally different feel, one in the downtown area and the other in College Station. I love them both for completely different reasons!

Peach Creek Ranch

Peach Creek Ranch is located in College Station, so it is a bit of a drive from Houston. But honestly, it’s worth the drive. It is a barn-style venue that has a ton of awesome amenities. My personal favorite is that there is a cottage for both the bride and the groom to get ready in. A lot of times, unless you are in a hotel, the groom gets the sloppy seconds when it comes to getting ready. I love that there is a designated space for him and that it is really nice. It makes it easy to capture pictures in that kind of atmosphere.

I also love the waterfront ceremony area that can be decorated in different ways, for different vibes. It’s a big space that can hold up to 275 seated people, which is great for big weddings. From my experience there, it has never felt overly crowded, regardless of the quantity of people invited. Also, the chandeliers in the barn are freakin gorgeous and make first dances look elegant AF. If a barn venue is your jam, you seriously need to consider this place!!

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Houston Family Photographer | Wacky Fun Family!

Houston Family Photographer | Wacky Fun Family!

When you meet a family as fun and wacky as Kayla’s, you know their portrait session is going to be awesome! Kayla confessed that they hadn’t had family pictures “in forever”. Considering her family is large, unconventional and awesome, she preferred a location as unique as them. We were hoping the blue trees would still be around, but sadly they had faded, so we went to plan B. And plan B was awesome: graffiti walls!

The Walls

We started off at the Houston wall because the light was hitting it perfectly. Plus, it’s iconic, ok? I love the sets when they are walking towards me, looking iconic. Then we went across the street to the zipper wall. We all loved the wall because of its vibrant colors. Right beside that wall were two other walls with vibrant red and purple shades, so obviously we had to do pictures there too!!

I think my favorite moment is when they all tried to jump in the air at the same time. It reminded me of one of my favorite scenes in The Office when the group trips to nail the jump. It is perfectly imperfect, and makes me laugh every time!!

When looking all this fun family photography, which moment is your favorite? Is it the group shots of them walking towards the camera, the jumping photo, or did something else jump out at you?

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Two Awesome Wedding Venues in Houston

Two Awesome Wedding Venues in Houston

two awesome Houston Wedding venuesI have not written nearly enough about the awesome wedding venues in Houston. Today this stops!! With Houston being so big, there are a ton of venues to choose from. And honestly? If they are a bit of a blank slate, you can transform a lot of spaces into the look that you want with draping and flowers. But then, then there are other spaces that have a ton of character and leave a lasting impression. In this blog post I am highlighting The Dunlavy and The Farmhouse.

The Dunlavy

I found out about this venue from a friend, and at the time I had no idea it was also a wedding venue. It was just a cool place to have brunch and ogle all the chandeliers. Then I was commissioned to photograph a wedding there with another photographer and my perception of the venue changed. It grew! The venue is located on the banks of Buffalo Bayou and Lost Lake in Houston, with glass walls that surround the dining room, so you see all the natural beauty during a ceremony or while you eat. The chandeliers are what make this space so unique, and as a photographer I just love how they add ambiance to all photos taken there.

This space is meant for smaller weddings, with a max of 150 people for capacity. As someone who had 75 people at their wedding, I have a place in my heart for smaller wedding sizes. It allows you to splurge on awesome things like a cool dress or bitchin’ flowers! On top of wedding looking baller here, I love the food!! Every dish I have had at a wedding there has been creative and delicious. (more…)

New Orleans Wedding Photographer | Keeley + Eric

New Orleans Wedding Photographer | Keeley + Eric

I have been to New Orleans once before, but never as a wedding photographer! So when Keeley and Eric said they were getting married there, I was stoked! And then she said the magic words “French Quarter”. Thank you, yes. For Keeley, New Orleans is home. It’s where she grew up, this she wanted to be married there. Eric, being awesome, was like “let’s do it!”.

Personality Plus

When they were deciding on locations to be married, Keeley was thinking about how the spaces would reflect their personalities. Being a bit of a nerd, Keeley loves anything Harry Potter, The Office, Parks and Rec, to name a few. Thus, when she found a venue called Tomas Bistro, she knew it was “the one”. You know why? Because in Parks and Rec there’s a Tom’s Bistro!! I, being the enabling nerd photographer that I am, was thrilled.

Keeley also showed her passion for other fandoms in the signs she peppered around the venue. Signs that said “After all this time? Always” or a bar sign that referenced guests solemnly swearing they were up to no good. You know, classy Harry Potter touches! She also wore Harry Potter socks, which made me want a pair of my own! As well, there was a sign at the start of the ceremony aisle that read “until the very end”, which is something that instantly makes me tear up!

Keeley and Eric are passionate about their dogs, so they walked Keeley down the aisle with her brother. It was super cute, and I was kind of hoping they would stick around for the reception but that would be impractical ha ha!

Other Beautiful Details

The details in this wedding were beautiful and touching. Keeley’s mom made the pipped arch in the ceremony site, and spent tireless hours making the flowers on it look perfect. She also designed and made Keeley’s bouquet! As a big fan of reading, I loved the tables at the reception, as they were peppered with books. The books displayed the personalities of both Keeley and Eric, and when paired with the flowers and other decor touches, it looked gorgeous!

Keeley, being an awesome pragmatist, wanted to be comfortable throughout her wedding, so she found lace converse shoes and wore them all day. She also had two wedding dresses–her main gown and then a second dress she changed into for her reception. She looked fantastic in both, and the second one afforded her more mobility to dance!! Which, when you look at the photos, she had a blast!!

Arcade Ending

At the end of the night, Keeley and Eric “wound down” at an arcade night club. They played a few games as husband and wife and then danced the night away!

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Houston Family Photographer | Studio Wardrobe

Houston Family Photographer | Studio Wardrobe

In late 2018 I decided to invest in clothing for family portraits. I knew that clothing was probably one of the biggest stressors going into a session for the entire family, but especially the mom. The goal is to make family portraits a totally different experience for the families that invest with me.

To start building this wardrobe, I hired Ashley Kahn Wardrobe Stylist to get the perfect pieces. She understood my vision and helped me get the most beautiful things!

What’s in the Wardrobe

I invested in clothing for toddlers to teenagers, for all genders. Sizing for adults range from small to plus size {up to size 24}. It was important that the looks that coordinate between siblings and parents and I might have found a few important pieces for moms to makes them feel special. Because, let’s be honest, it’s the mothers who put the most work into these sessions. So I bought a few pieces from BHLDN!

For colors, the goal is to have the outfits work in my studio or in a park. Both places are where most sessions happen. The clothing has to go with the greens and browns of the park, and also have some pizzaz for the studio. Cream, soft pinks and blues, tulle skirts and suspenders. They look amazing in both spaces!

The only items I don’t carry are pants for the men, but I do send you a list of pants that will match perfectly.

The Looks in Action

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Houston Branding Photographer | Alicia Femi

Houston Branding Photographer | Alicia Femi

When a fun, quirky virtual assistant needs badass branding photos, that’s where I come in! When I received Tanesha’s inquiry, I got excited. She wanted color, she wanted balloons, and she sounded so fun! She knew exactly what she wanted her photos to look like, and it my job super easy. As well, she confessed that she was super nervous, as she had never had a photoshoot before. So I made it a goal to make her feel confident for her session.

Studio Story

Tanesha wanted photos of her “in action” at a desk. She saw in her head a mood board behind her, like her creativity had come to life. She wanted photos of herself on a laptop or iPad, so that on her website people could put a face to the name, and see her working for them. As well, she had already made an amazing mood board with her ideas, and it was clear and concise what she wanted. And if you look at the pictures below, you will see how well all this worked out!!

Tanesha In the World Story

Tanesha also wanted photos of her around Houston being fun. She wants to appeal to female entrepreneurs who are creative, so showing off her fun side, with balloons and well known places around Houston was important. I love how we were able to get photos before the Sugar and Cloth color wall and stairs were removed. This stairs were my favorite and I am sad/pissed they have been repainted. But I digress!! We got some great photos that were fun and showed off her personality. And it included confetti, so how can you go wrong?? Exactly! You can’t!!

You can check out her website and see how she can up-level your life HERE!

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You’d Never Guess My Secret to Awesome Engagement Photos

You’d Never Guess My Secret to Awesome Engagement Photos

awesome engagement photosRaise your hand if getting your picture taken makes you feel awkward and uncomfortable ?? And keep it raised if you feel more awkward when it comes to engagement photos! I remember when Robert and I were getting ready for our engagement pictures, I was worried about looking as dorky as I felt inside.

Now that I am on the other side of the lens, I realize all couples feel awkward in front of the camera. In fact, I find men to feel more awkward than the women. Which is why they are typically vocal about not wanting to take pictures, and a lot of times dread it.

But you know what? I have some tricks up my sleeve! In fact I have a few tricks to make you feel less awkward. So let’s dig into my secret stash of tricks!

1. Strike the Right Vibe

Are you and your fiancé more private in nature? Does the thought of having people watch you during the engagement session make you uncomfortable? If you don’t want to be taking photos in front of bystanders or pedestrians, I highly recommend avoiding grafitti walls or murals on a weekend when the lighting is perfect. Instead, let’s go somewhere a little more remote and private. But, if you don’t care, then let’s incorporate that grafitti wall into your session!

Below you can see two examples, one in a gorgeous bar and another at a private park. Both are exactly the vibe the couple wanted.amazing engagement photosamazing engagement photos (more…)

Destination Wedding Photographer | Sarah + Russell

Destination Wedding Photographer | Sarah + Russell

You know, it blows my mind that I get to say I am a destination wedding photographer! And that Sarah + Russell hired me to capture their gorgeous, intimate wedding in the Dominican Republic. It’s actually a funny story, one of my planner friends posted on Facebook that she had booked her first destination wedding and I jokingly wrote a comment under her post that I was going to sneak into her luggage. If you know me, you know I would write that on anyone’s post! So Brandi reaches out about the wedding, and faster than you can cast a Harry Potter spell, I was part of the adventure! And I didn’t need to hide in Brandi’s bag!!

To add onto this awesome, is the fact that Destination I Do has published the wedding today on their blog!! After looking at my pictures, you should head over there and check out their feature!

Sarah + Russell

Sarah and Russell have had a passion for travel, the beach and are in love with the Caribbean islands. When people say it’s a no-brainer about a decision, the location for this wedding was exactly that. Sarah and Russell got this killer deal for the location, Villa Cocomar. It is a sprawling piece of land that has a huge house with several bedrooms plus two other buildings to house more people in hotel-style. The pool was huge and the perfect temperature {I would know I swam in it lots!}, and the bar was right beside the pool. The ceremony site overlooked the beach, so all the pictures have ocean in the background. Sarah + Russell couldn’t have picked a better place for their wedding!!

My favorite thing though is that Sarah + Russell had such a relaxed, amazing time going into their wedding. I loved watching them love on each other the days going into the wedding, relaxing in the pool or taking walks on the beach. If you want to hear more about them as a couple, check out their engagement session.

Favorite Details

This is hard because I loved all the details for this wedding. But, there were some details that really stuck out to me. First off, Sarah had two dresses, and both are gorgeous. But her ceremony gown? That was a work of art! All that detail and lace was an inspiration to photograph! And her shoes? They looked like shoes a Disney Princess would wear, with those crystals at the top.

I also loved the boutonnière’s the men wore. I mean they were freaking tiny pineapples!! They looked awesome on the blue suits the men wore. The ceremony site was everything you think of when you think “destination wedding”, the chairs were tropical in nature, the flower arch framed the ocean behind them, and of course there were the palm trees. Lastly, I loved their dining table. The blue and white vases filled with flowers were such a cool touch, that tied in neatly to the linens on the table.

But my absolute favorite detail? Sarah + Russell. You can feel their love for each other every moment they are together. The loving glances, inside jokes and their emotional first dance! They are what made the day special.

Rad Vendors

Stylists & Coordinator: Laced with Grace & Dominican Wedding Planner
Hair & Makeup: Juan Pablo Taveras
Bridesmaid Dress: Lulus
Invitation Suite: Minted
Calligrapher: Hey Bernadette
Videographer: 8k studios RD
Hair and Makeup for Your Engagement Session–Is it Worth it?

Hair and Makeup for Your Engagement Session–Is it Worth it?

As a supporter of couples doing their own thing, I find that hair and makeup for your engagement session can be seen as a “nice to have”. And honestly? I could go either way. It really depends on what you are doing for your engagement session…but I am getting ahead of myself!

What’s Your Style?

I have had brides that love and wear makeup daily and it makes them feel comfortable in their skin. Then I have brides who are uncomfortable in makeup and are minimalistic. Both are 100% ok. I fall more into camp B, I wear eyeliner and eye shadow with lip gloss, but you throw foundation or mascara at me? Then I get uncomfortable. And don’t even get me started on contouring! But other women, that’s their jam!! If you are passionate about makeup and want to not worry about that aspect of getting ready for your engagement session, then I say do it. Get professional hair and makeup done. You will feel pampered and confident.engagement session (more…)

Houston Branding Photographer | Sprinkle Pop

Houston Branding Photographer | Sprinkle Pop

One of my favorite things as a branding photographer is to capture products small businesses have poured their heart and soul into. Sprinkle Pop is one of the most fun Houston companies I have paired with. I found her through my friend Jennifer, and it was instant love. Her sprinkles are colorful and whimsical. They inspire bakers to create amazing things! Also, she made a Canadian mix two summers ago and I might have bought more than I needed!

The Session

Liz, the brains behind Sprinkle Pop, hired me to capture her Halloween and Christmas setups. She brought in cakes, cookies, cake balls and her festive sprinkles. We did lots of setups and they showed off the fun additions Liz puts in her sprinkle mixes to make them unique. A personal favorite of mine were the snowmen and spiders. I want to have a favorite setup, but when I look at them again, it’s impossible. You can see how Sprinkle Pop inspires bakers.

After you look through these images, I would love to know which setup is your favorite!

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