Posts Tagged ‘(a) Engagement Pictures’

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The intent of this post is to prove the point : that sometimes you photograph for a while just to get the subjects prepped for that one epic moment.

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On another note I don’t think people come to me to get engagement pictures for that one wedding announcement picture.
That might be kind of silly… I think they’re hoping for a set of pictures that share all the aspects of their relationship. A mini-scrapbook of their love story.

BTW you can see 150+ images in this gallery

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In my mind their shoot is kind of like a third wheel Date with Jarvie – An expensive one

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The beginning part of the shoot is often just to find the rythm and be comfortable. I believe it’s an art to making people comfortable or even happy in front of the camera… to ignore them when they talk about being nervous or whatever defense mechanism they have… and just start having fun.

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Doing things like putting them in a tiny little alley way… mainly because you just are intrigued to see how it turns out. (And you think it’ll break down their pre-conceptions of what they’ll be doing)

OR… placing them next to a porta-potty … to make them laugh (or something like that)

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But providing plenty of moments to be tender

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And then of course what I’m good at… the joyful stuff

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Then seeing how they react when they’re all by themselves for some individual portraits… gives me a perspective of where they’re willing to go or where they’re naturally drawn to

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And then you’re at the END of the day and you bring out the fun lighting and things get a little more dramatic.

But by that time you’re all seasoned pros and they can handle a little more standing still and set up for lights and they’re comfortable and you know what their strong suits are… OR… they come up with something totally different and awesome

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(Originally written and posted by Scott Jarvie via Google+)

Yesterday one of the stops here in Tokyo was a popular park near Shinjuku station where thousands of people were gathered to see the cherry blossoms and have pic-nics.

About the couple
Jennifer and Tipp work for Google and are doing a sort of exchange in Tokyo for the year but will be back by the end of the year for their wedding in the Bay Area.

About the picture
I was doing a lot of my typical close up shots when Jennifer challenged me to try getting a shot that had tons of a tree. Well that proved difficult for a few reasons… the major one was that almost every tree was swarmed by dozens of visitors and doing a wide angle meant much more chance of getting someone else in it. I even thought it’d be impossible at first… but I kept searching for something. I took a bunch of other pictures with an attempt to get something but I didn’t enjoy the style of the picture and this one happened because the clients didn’t walk to the place I was thinking to try next. Well it was a great thing because when I saw where they were standing I knew in an instant the type of shot that would work… and it was nothing like I thought when I was originally given the challenge and perhaps nothing like they had envisioned. But it certainly tells the story of the cherry blossoms and puts them right in the thick of things.

I think the moral of the story is that it’s alright to let your clients give ideas and take them and roll with the challenge. Hopefully they are challenges and not specific requests because that can be pretty limiting to creativity. Don’t give up too easy… I might have thought the challenge pretty impossible given the circumstances but the only thing I really needed was to be more creative. Good thing I was able to stumble upon the solution.

More photo-shoots around the world
Yes I’m excited to do a few more out of the country photo-shoots this year and I’m hoping lots more come my way. I don’t charge for wedding travel so this is a real possibility.
Now engagements is a different story.
Because the location and the time of the year was so enticing I was willing to schedule in this trip to do the engagements at no extra cost but that of covering my expenses. Part of that was because it was later notice and I didn’t have anything scheduled between two Saturday weddings anyway. It was a lot of traveling to get here and it was a long photo-shoot that would make the most in shape person pretty tired but it was very very fulfilling and fun.

(Guest writer Keri Neal) Images by Scott Jarvie

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I don’t charge by the hour with my photoshoots.
They can go as long or as short as they want… which is nice because everyone takes a different length of time to get into the shoot and everyone fades at different times than others.

Ashley played it smart and said that since her fiance is no fan of pictures that she would use her good will on the wedding day in a couple months in Texas.

So we only shot for 30 minutes in pretty much one location of the library and we were done.

But hey we got a bit done didn’t we?

Full gallery here

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I’ve been doing this for a few years now and sometimes i’ve been more consistent than others…. but I’ve now done over 600 posts. Pretty Cool.

ABOUT THE SHOOT

I had this couple come up with a spot.

They choose the house that he grew up in and that they’d be moving into after they got married. The property is pretty deverse and it’s up on the mountain side in Provo Utah.

I love taking on challenges of places that have meaning to clients but aren’t the proto-typical… but in the end this place was pretty awesome. A little more rustic and the color pallett was pretty distinct and fun.

Because it’s on the west side of the mountain we were able to shoot in shady light for a long time until the shade finally hit.

MY ENGAGEMENT SHOOTS

We work together as a team. I try to foster their personality and creativity and they allow me to do the same.

This way it becomes more like a day of hanging out and having fun and being creative… and Never painful pictures.

We go until the shots are gotten and we are happy.

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We use what is at our disposal and they trust that with whatever we choose I will be there to make sure they get the best pictures possible.

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I try new things that I don’t normally do… like the shot below. Because the lighting was just right and the idea seemed appropriate for them.

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I put my bright style of colors and contrast into my work

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These are both pictures for THEM and for the many people that they will be sending announcement to. So we need to see who they are and the interaction between them.

I get Close ups

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Or Scenic Pictures

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And I get humorous pictures that are very them

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I encourage creativity. I don’t stifle it by acting as if only the photographer knows anying.

You Like sunflowers… well your image might not work, but let’s roll with it and do something a bit different with the same theme.

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Love has many sides to it… among them are tenderness and joy

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And as you can see they can be done in the same places

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I also get solo shots

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And As you’ve seen… Even a good mixture of B&W choices

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We did find lots of places to get out of the rain… but we got plenty of wet.

To see the full gallery go here

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Right to side of the road on our way up to Park City

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Our very first shots of the day… back when we were kinda dry.

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Bridevale falls… one of the only times I’ve done pics there.

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Thought I’d try something interesting up in park city.

And below – More rain.

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And you always need one for the grandma to see their faces

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While sometimes I pick on themed shoots for a few reasons… the truth is I wan to do more.

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Mannequins for my idea… no

I’m not gonna ask my clients to dress up like alice in wonderland, a disney princess, the newest most popular movie character.
I also won’t insist they need to go with a desert, beach, stadium or race track just for the heck of it and make it very themed based on those locations.

It just doesn’t work for what I’m doing… if their friends look at the picture and ask why are you on a beach towell at utah lake having a pic-nic. You hate Utah Lake, you two have never been on a pic-nic and that’s not even your beach towell nor does it have anything to do with you or your wedding.

I don’t want a mannequin for some idea i have… “you go stand here and put your hands just like so”
I want to use the location and light and their personalities to create something that works just for them.

I create art around them… I don’t just put them into the art I create.

I know there are plenty of photographers that do this other way… and I think it’s cool and they come up with great stuff… it’s just not me.

Collaborate

So when I do more themed it’s because the client was also creative… and we collaborated.

What usually happens is they have an idea that they think shows off their personalities and their relationship… and I… adapt it to make it look photographically much more appealing.

That’s the way I pose… you do what you would normally do and I’ll tell you when it sucks and adapt it to make it much more photogenic.

I communicate a ton with my clients and give them what I consider lots of instructions… and yet they always tell me they feel like I didn’t pose them. That I’m not a poser.

So with themes they say:

  • Our first date was …
  • We love to…
  • Our favorite location is…
  • Our favorite music… our favorite store…
  • Our favorite activity together is…

I say: Let’s run with that… I have some good ideas that will work for that. Such as…

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PERSONALITY

My photography is about personality.

I want my clients and their friends and family to say “Oh my heavens that’s so ‘Bobby and Susie’ ”

  • Does it reflect them?
  • Does it reflect their wedding?
  • Does it reflect incidents in their dating history?
  • Does it reflect things they like? (at least)

I do want to do more themed shoots

  • They get lots more attention
  • They are more creative and artistic (in general)
  • I like the challenge.
  • Even the challenge of making the repeated theme fresh and new in my own way.
  • They are better for business. (the attention they get)
  • They are more desired by wedding magazines and blogs

Why I have sometimes been hard on themed shoots.

Well it’s not because I’m against themed shoots or think they’re bad for photography.

It’s because I worry that people don’t do a good job of distinguishing creative direction for photographic skills.

I think a picture can be a great picture while being a poorly taken picture.

The key is to appreciate each are for what they’re worth!

Areas of impact to consider

Locations, creative ideas and selecting photogenic subjects are all GOOD things (needful things)… but then there’s that other pesky little thing… taking good/skilled pictures (light, emotion, composition, processing, the moment)

People can be praised in the picture for many items

  • The Location
  • The Idea
  • The Subject
  • The Photographic Skill

I guess what I desire is that people can look at a picture and see where each of those skills came in.

Examples

Part of this came from thinking about typical Orange County or NYC weddings where they’re spending crazy amounts on the weddings. There is so many pretty elements on the wedding day that I worry potential clients are seeing all the pictures of the pretty things and confusing it for pretty/skilled photography. (Yes they can certainly be skilled photographers as well as pretty items/locations/subjects of course.)

I myself have been fortunate to have taken pictures of a lot of typically pretty people. I have also taken pictures of couples at nice places (a lot of LDS temples) and a few more exotic locations.
I don’t do the fancy very expensive receptions (not like OC or NYC) … in fact often I do cultural hall weddings.

I have tuned my skills dealing with mid day light and crazy colors of a church basketball court for many a reception. (I am thankful for that tough teaching)

Making up for deficiencies

You deserve it all

A client deserves all those things we can offer, good ideas, good locations and good photographic skills.

I think the Photographic Skills can make up for possible deficiencies in the other areas.

  • They can make a boring or “ugly” place look great.
  • They can bring out the most beauty in the subject
  • And they can portray the idea/theme in the best possible way.

THIS THEME

Here’s the deal on these pictures.

They had a long distance relationship.

He would fly up from California almost every weekend. He had graduated BYU and had a job in California and she was still going to BYU living in Provo.

So they said Airport and we rolled with it.

We then threw in some other pictures… Like these Memory Grove pictures.

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I really just wanted a self-portrait .. (Which I did) … but then I figured why not get his Fiancee in there too. haha

Good reflective glasses… I shoulda had her a bit closer and made her larger.

But yeah it’s pretty fun lil’ idea and we were just standing there on the bayou and he had his glasses like that so i thought… “Why Not”

Many of my best stuff comes because inside my head i say “Why not” and then take it on as a challenge.

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We started this series a week or two ago… I need to keep on the ball.

As I’m leaving for a couple of weeks I’ll keep shorter on what I write so I can queue up a bunch of posts for your viewing pleasure

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OK the story:We just got done walking through the campus and doing some sunrise shots then we went for breakfast… this is as we walked back to the car… I said wait up a minute lets do a couple more pics.

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I love alleyways like this… and they don’t even need to be dirty or grungy (though those can be fun)

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I woulda loved to have lighting with me but I made due

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After the walk through campus (As seen in the previous post) we did a little walk through down town Annapolis (after having dinner at a fun Italian Restaurant who’s name escapes me)

I love the above picture because as they picked me up from the airport earlier that day and we drove to town I talked about how it’ll be cool to get pictures of them in front of buildings all covered in Ivy… there weren’t as many as I thought… but we did get this one in an alleyway that we were walking through.

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She wanted to look at the nice jewelry and so I said do it again but this time let me be prepped in the right spot… haha

It was hard to get an angle with the stuff inside and still have them in the frame and still be using my f/1.4 lens to blur all the people around so we just did a few but I like them… and I know Kristen enough to know she was really checking out that jewelry for realsies.

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Random cool buildings and sidewalks of brick.

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Hey you guys! I yell and see how they respond when they look back.

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Cool little set of stairs that lead to I’m not sure where.

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I’m remembering the power of Silhouettes these days and making them happen more often.

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This all brick enclave really warmed up the picture.

And I didn’t even yell at them this time to look back.

This time we get to hear a few words from the Groom talking about how they found me and then sharing what went down on the engagement picture experience… on another day we’ll get a different perspective from the bride and see what pictures she talks about.

I’m really happy to be doing Robbie and Jesse’s wedding in November they care so much about capturing the character of their personalities and their wedding. And it’s a big plus that they both have developed and dynamic personalities.

Jarvie Engagment Pictures Experience

When I first saw Scott Jarvie’s work, it was of the Sego Festival that was held in Provo. The pictures were of my brother’s band Eyes Lips Eyes. As an aspiring photographer, I really liked his style and had kept the name in my mind. The photos that caught my eyes were these:

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The colors and lighting in these were amazing and really brought the energy that the band had during their performance and that’s something I strive to do when I take concert pictures or pictures in general.

Right before we were engaged I found his photography page, ‘Jarvie digital’ on facebook and became a fan. After me and Jesse were engaged, our thought was to get a great photographer that was different and took amazing pictures. She being an artist and me loving photography, we both wanted something special. We were ok skimping on other things, but our engagement and wedding pictures we wanted someone that we could trust with the memories of our wedding; someone that could do much more than me taking the pictures myself. While discussing the options, I mentioned that I really like this one photographer that I had recently become a fan of on facebook and that I really liked the Sego pictures that he took a while back. We met him and discussed our options and what we were looking for with him and felt really comfortable. He was open to the ideas that we had and let us know if they were feasible. We were really excited about the possibilities. We wanted somewhere that not many people had been to and that was out of the way a bit. We (me and Jesse) both wanted to do something that was personalized. Me enjoying photography, I wanted to include cameras in my pictures. I brought older cameras to match the older, run down areas we were in.

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Jesse really liked the movie “The Red Ballon” and wanted to include that in the pictures.

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I beg to differ.

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OK so I guess I don’t here this too often these days since most people are realizing new ways to come up with new stuff.

Yes obey the rule usually, but when you got a handle on the typical reason why not to do it, then go ahead and try breaking it.

Try 14mm on a portrait… specially one where you want some landscape.
This isn’t the only one i’ve taken with this lens of people… I’ll do it often, but I really know my lens and what will be problematic.

Don’t rely on it… but play around.

I’ll also make sure to show off some portraits I’ve done with the fisheye that haven’t been the Jarvie Window

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So just finished a pretty awesome photo shoot. (Up in American Fork Canyon)

I skimmed some of the pictures real fast (there were a Ton)

I thought to myself I could put up a quick teaser.
That would either be very nice to do so they could have something ASAP long before their expectations.

Or on the other hand it could be very mean to give them just a small bite and leave them hanging for a while til the rest of them are done.

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So is it mean or nice?

I’m not really sure, I kind of just want to put these up so people can ohhh and ahhh and make me feel good about the pics.

P.s. Marco (one of the student-interns) came and assisted with lighting and took some pictures for himself. He learned lots about fun lighting and learned it’s all about setting stuff up fast in shoots like this. I made him work hard, but in the end I hope that helped him really know his stuff.

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(Above) I’m pretty happy with this picture because they wanted a picnic look and had these grand aspirations of the prototypical look, and when I saw this bright and yet rustic fence I thought this will be different and fun. They trusted me enough that their awesome idea would work in a grungy street in the middle of no where on a patch of here today gone tomorrow green grassy-weedy with a couple of surprise flowers. No big fancy set up needed… just plop down the blanket and basket and say, hey by the way we’re doing your picnic picture here now have yourself a little romantic moment while I lay down on this sidewalk.

A continuation

Last week I posted a teaser of some of the pictures I had taken at night of a couple in front of the Golden Gate Bridge.

The Rest

Today I share the rest of the pictures taken throughout the day and throughout the city.

They get married in July in Idaho but she lives close to San Fransisco and I was already there doing a wedding, so he came down and we spent a few hours trying out dozens of locations throughout the city.

You want good pictures?

What makes for a great engagement picture session? a whole bunch of enthusiasm… and this couple certainly had it and it led to me trying out a bunch of new things. If a couple is good with “whatever” then that’s what happens, and if they want amazing and are willing to work for it, then that’s what we’ll strive for.

see the gallery of many many more pictures

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No… no one is a pilot… but we saw it from the freeway and all thought it looked so scenic… and we were right!

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(Above Right) – “Sitting on the dock of the bay -Watching the tide roll away - I’m just sitting on the dock of the bay - Wasting time”

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Recently I’ve started to take a lot more individual portraits at the engagement (and other) shoots.

Figure they (and parents and friends) would appreciate them.
The parents can put them on their wall next to their senior pictures and they can even use them on facebook if they like.

Why not… just takes a few seconds… kick the fiance out and see their personality by themselves not in their comfort zone with their love.

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Then I’m able to tag them as such and in SmugMug make a smart gallery that will pull all these shots into one album… like so