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Social Art, the Language of Memories, and Branding

Yesterday, I had the privilege to attend the amazing PDN Photoplus International Conference at the Javits Center in Manhattan. After jitters of excitement and tears of encouragement, I left so very inspired that I wanted to share what I learned with you. I attended three seminars by three of the most inspiring photographers I know. Here is a bit of each of their presentations – I hope what I learned can inspire you, too!

Chase Jarvis: Creativity and the New Social Art of Photography

Chase Jarvis has impacted the photography industry in countless ways. The main focus of his presentation was the idea of “social art,” a concept he admits is difficult to explain, but described as art that is “incomplete without the participation of the other.” He stresssed that we have a moral obligation to create and share how we created it with others, because it is simply more beneficial to everyone for the world to become more creative. He featured a panel of photographers who shared their stories of success (and failures) and who are not afraid to expose their “secrets of success” with other rising artists. I was inspired by Chase’s transparency and honesty in all that he has experienced to be where he is today. Although initially he was shunned by peers in the industry, his openness has only made him more successful. Chase features several videos and articles on his blog to help photographers through his own experience, and he often features other photographers and professionals to share their experiences as well. Chase also launched CreativeLive, where he broadcasts free live courses for photographers and artists over the internet. I have personally gained so much from these courses, and I hope that other photographers will take advantage of the resources made available by Chase. For more about Chase and his work, please visit his blog here!

Elizabeth Messina: Getting to the Heart of Wedding Photography

“Photography is the language of memories.” I know of no photographer who exemplifies this better than the person who said it, Elizabeth Messina. I was so privileged to hear her speak yesterday about the idea that as wedding photographers, we are storytellers not just of someone’s wedding day, but of their life. She challenged us to find bits and pieces of a person’s life on their wedding day and to photograph the story, not just the event itself. Elizabeth has exemplified this in her own work. I’m warning you, once you visit her blog you will be addicted. She is a very talented (and famous) film photographer, but she is also a mother of three, a wife, and a sensitive and loving person. After seeing her in person for the first time, I immediately saw her personality in her photos – soft, sensitive, warm and personal.

*Images by Elizabeth Messina

Jasmine Star: Developing Your Wedding Brand

Last but certainly not least, I finally met the one person who has influenced my photography the most – Jasmine Star. Jasmine is an inspiration for so many reasons. She built her business from nothing and became one of the top 10 photographers in the world within three years of launching her business. She believes deeply in transparency and in sharing her experience with others, which has made her a HUGE name in the photography industry. Recently, she shot an entire wedding LIVE in a project put together by Chase Jarvis just to be a help to photographers around the world. Yes, this means Jasmine is giving away her “secrets” to her competitors, yet she still manages to be amazingly successful. Jasmine attributes much of her success to the way she branded her business. In a time and place where photographers over saturated the market, Jasmine was determined to find a way to stand out without a budget to advertise, without fancy equipment, and without the experience other photographers possessed. Jasmine used the skills she had, namely writing, her personality, and her blog, to stand out among other photographers and as a way to connect with potential clients in a medium that was new to the industry. She encouraged us to use our own assets to bring out who we are to clients, and she emphasized the importance of branding as an essential element of a successful wedding photographer. Visit Jasmine’s blog for a daily dose of humor, education, love and gorgeous images!

Happy Weekend!

The Art of Cinematography

Photography has opened my eyes to appreciate various art forms I’ve never previously explored, one of which is wedding cinematography. This is not surprising considering that photography and cinematography have many common elements. I’ve been awestruck at the art of wedding cinematography and the way it has evolved in such a short time. I recently came across this beautiful, dramatic, mind blowing, unforgettable wedding video from Americana Cinema. I’ve watched it, oh, a mere gazillion times, and I still get chills down my spine every time! I am simply amazed at how technology and art can work together to preserve such beautiful memories in an artistic form. Hence, my deep passion for photography and my new-found appreciation for cinematography.

Grab yourself some popcorn and a box of tissues and enjoy this epic short film of, you know, the typical supermodel’s wedding set at a historic French castle. =)

Diana - You know, I found the MOVIE?! It’s like 25 min long…and this model has been popping up everywhere ever since you showed this to me! hehe

admin - I just watched it last night! lol

gabrielle - i saw something to this affect awhile back and immediately decided i had to re-do my wedding. coco rocha is amazing!


Deyla HUss Photography - Love this! its beautiful! I poped over to your blog from Jasmine’s and glad I did, amazing work!

admin - Thanks Deyla! I just took a look at your blog and love it too!! Keep in touch! =)


christine - I’ve never seen anything like this! I have ginormous goosebumps!!!!

Dianne & Alin: Portland Wedding

Dianne and Alin are a very special couple in so many ways. As Alin would say, Dianne has a sweet, kind spirit and a smile that lights up anyone’s day. She is beautiful yet humble, simple, and is just a joy to be around! Alin is admirable for his strong character, ambitious spirit, and dedication to charity. Alin is the US representative for an organization called Grain for Pain, which provides sacks of grain to villagers dying of starvation in Southern Sudan. Dianne and Alin have both spent time in Africa serving the people there, and now they are able to serve together as husband and wife! I’m not sure which one of them has a bigger heart, so you can only imagine what impact such loving people will have in this world!

The wedding took place at the beautiful Oregon Golf Club, which just happened to be blooming with roses!

The golf club was surrounded by beautiful, colorful fields perfect for photos. A photographer’s dream!

You cannot even imagine my excitement when I saw this field of daisies!

The reception was full of adorable and thoughtful details.

In addition to his many talents, Alin is also a gifted musician! He surprised everyone at the reception with a fun song which he wrote for his new bride.

One thing I really appreciated about Dianne and Alin was how much time they allotted for photos of just the two of them. Personally, these are my favorite photos because I love capturing the interaction and romance of a couple on their wedding day. Luckily, the golf club and surrounding area provided endless locations to photograph!

Since the lighting after the reception was much more conducive to photography, we headed back to this gorgeous field to get a few more shots!

Dianne, you are stunning! My camera LOVED you!

Click here for a slideshow!

Anca - lovely! just lovely! i love everything about this!

Diana - Love every single picture. Wonderful work sweets! You totally rocked it out!


Wow, what a privilege I have to be able to share such an exciting journey of life and photography with friends, clients and everyone else who may have stumbled across this blog! I’ve been anxiously waiting for this opportunity for a while now, and I am so very blessed that God has put me in a place where I am able to document my growth as a photographer. I am also thankful for those who have encouraged me along the way to pursue what I love even though it didn’t seem to make any sense at the time. Discovering my passion for photography in the middle of law school was a bit of a challenge, but I can say with confidence that photographing love has brought me more joy and satisfaction than any other career. The ability to capture special moments in an artistic and beautiful way is more satisfying than I ever could have imagined. If you would have told me a few years ago that I was going to become a wedding photographer, I would have looked at you and laughed. And that’s what makes it so special – I’m not even sure exactly how it began or why this passion developed in me. But God brought it into my life at the perfect time and I couldn’t be more thankful.

I am a strong believer in adding a picture to every post, so here is a photo of my dream come true at a wedding I shot this past weekend. I’ve always fantasized of taking a dress shot in a tree, but never found the perfect branch at just the right height.

Well, I’m proud to say that I finally accomplished it (with Adrian’s help, of course)!

If you haven’t already, please stop by my newly designed website here!

Andrea B - Congrats on launching your blog! Looking great so far, and the shot is lovely!

Diana Lupu - YAYYY!!! I’m your OFFICIAL first comment! I would just like to say that i’m so beyond proud of you and happy for you! I love you and can’t wait to see you SOAR! And I’m happy to add another blog to my list of daily visits. :)

Lindsay L - And to think a certain “wedding coordinator” almost hindered this to-die-for shot from happening! Gorgeous!

Christine Lucaciu - What a beautiful platform to document your journey. Love your first post and the dress in the tree. :) So happy for you!!!

Candee - gOrrgeous shot!!
So glad Diana Lupu referred your blog, definitely adding it to my list!

Anca - LOVE the blog, Lauren! Beautiful shot/dress!

Ozzy Garcia - Lauren, love the new blog and site!!!!

Eileen - Beautiful work! I am so bless to see your very first wedding post… actually I got here through Diana Lupu’s blog… I am so grateful she shared it! All the best!