Tag Archives: Raleigh

Real Life Happens

Words are not really something I struggle with.

Okay, occasionally, my vocabulary falls a little short, but I definitely can chat it up with the best of them.  A few friends would probably claim that I can talk to a brick wall (which is so not true – I can talk *at* a brick wall).  However, when events happen like the one outlined here, I have a hard time formulating the proper words on multiple levels.  I’ll try to just stick to a factual Reader’s Digest, so hang in here with me.  It’s worth it! 🙂

Being a photographer of people, especially weddings, is a part of your soul.  It is ingrained in you.  While I’m on a personal mission to attend a wedding as a guest with a good lookin’ man by the end of the year (no, seriously), I’ll probably chat it up with the photographers at the reception, anyways.  Though I don’t get asked to attend or capture all of them, I am acutely aware of what friends are engaged and when their weddings will be happening.  I seriously can’t help it.

And so, when I received a Facebook message at 10:58am on a Sunday from the about-to-be Katie Douros, asking me to call her ASAP, I already knew it was her wedding day.  By grace, I was sitting at my computer, with plans to process images for pretty much the rest of the day.  I called her immediately and a shaky voice answered.  Before she completed the entire sentence of “My photographer got the date wrong”, I was changing out of my yoga clothes and into wedding clothes and scouring the apartment for bobby pins to pull my hair back.  I am so thankful I keep my workhorse camera bag ready to go at all times.
Yes, their hired photographer got the date wrong.  As this person lived five hours away in South Carolina – and the ceremony was in five hours – all of the pre-wedding photos would have no photographer.  Katie was en route to get ready as we chatted on the phone.  I asked her for the address of where she would be and the contact information for the hired photographer, so that we could determine a game plan.

Not thirty minutes after I talked with Katie on the phone, I walked in to the room where her hair was being done.  And seeing me gave her permission to release the stress.  Cue all the tears.  We have a running joke amongst us wedding photographers that we are part photographer, part hair stylist, boutonniere pinners, stylists and therapists.  It takes a special person.  As I bear hugged that beautiful girl, letting her know we had it all under control, I had one of those fleeting moments of “This is why I do this”.

Jon + Katie’s bridal party was absolutely amazing.  Their radiant ladies and hilarious gentlemen helped the day move so smoothly, despite the speed bumps.  I cannot even begin to thank them enough for being such bright lights of support that day!  As I showed up to the groomsmen’s house, Jon looked at one of his groomsmen and asked what I was doing there.  “She’s not our photographer,” he said.  Knowing what had happened, his groomsman smiled and replied “Now she is.”

Through the power of social media, two other beautiful women came running to save the day.  The lovely and talented Lauren Jolly Thomas captured church details and onward while the beautiful Cindy Parkhurst Schepers came barreling up the interstate from the coast and met me for the first look and stayed until the very end.  Jon and Katie now had not just one photographer, but three!  As I had an evening session I simply could not reschedule, I gave everyone a rough play-by-play 20 minutes before ceremony and hugged them.  The original photographer had arrived (after much pleading on my behalf – and by pleading, I mean I’m pretty sure I could have been nicer) and those three ladies stayed for the remainder of the day.

As I strive to say only true and necessary things, let me just say the following.  First, Jon and Katie are incredible.  She really might be the sweetest person I’ve ever met.  Ever.  Despite the crazy and the overcast skies, this girl was BEAMING.  She was silly and dancing and loved every single second.  Going through their images has already been a joy. 🙂

Secondly, events like this are exactly why I operate our weddings like we do.  We are on board from day one working alongside our brides to answer their schedule questions, share our wedding vendor knowledge and work on their photography lists.  When things happen (and they always do) we already know the schedule and the plan and can step alongside to make the day the best it can possibly be.  We have served as wedding coordinators (when one didn’t show), flower delivery folks, bourbon suppliers, dress steamers, chauffeurs when taxis never came and the list goes on.  While we certainly understand budgetary concerns, if photos are important to you, look for someone who operates in a similar fashion.  No matter what your overall budget, your photographer should be communicative, knowledgable and a strong partner.

Wedding days are important.  They carry weight.  Images are so special.
I was so glad I was in town to be a part of the team to capture this one.

Jon and Katie Douros, congratufreakinglations!!!
We are so thrilled to have spent the day with you.

Tons o’ Love,
Your Dream Team

Queen Bee Note:
As the schedule speed bump threw the day off quite a bit, time was short (and it was pretty frigid) for bride and groom portraits.   So, on a really sunny Sunday a month later, they got back in their clothes and spent the day with five of us photographers – including me, Cindy and Lauren!  Some of the images below are from that day.  We just couldn’t narrow their blog post down to the one day.  🙂

 

 

 

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An incredible Christmas miracle.

The (new & improved!) Bell Family.

The (new & improved!) Bell Family.

Miracles happen.  It’s true.

Like, how I spent half of 2013 in 16 other states and 3 other countries, racking up nearly 30,000 miles on my car and yet there are families that stay in touch through a variety of ways.   They ask me to do really really fun things when I do find my two feet on Carolina soil.  The Bell’s are one of those families.  Their first two kids, Noah & Hannah, graced my camera nearly four years ago.  This whole team is fantastic.  When Mom, Kathy, reached out and asked me to capture their newest addition, I was so excited.

Because miracles happen.  And through a lot of petition and prayer and provision, they are officially a family of five!  The rambunctious Josiah Cole joined their ranks in the eyes of the state just this week.  Read (and see!) more about the new & improved Bell Family by visiting Kathy’s blog here:
http://charis30.wordpress.com/2013/12/20/introducing-josiah-cole-bell/

Adoption has been something I believe in for years.  I am always happy to capture new additions, whether through biological or adoptive birth.  There’s something about spending time with families as they come closer to completion.
Maybe it’s the miracles.

May you go slow enough in this season to notice them.
In Love,
amaris

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New seasons are like fresh air.

Welcome!

If you’ve been around for one hour or one year, I hope you feel welcome here.  This is something I’ve always wanted to say about my work and my home.  My extrovert personality and hospitality wiring means there’s a good chance we’re going to get along.  I love people.

It was this personality and wiring combination that led me to here, I’d say.  Photography began as an elective at college so I could transfer into NC State University.  Once at State, a professor saw my work and believed in me.  My parents did, too.  And then friends who were willing to stand in front of my lens as I figured out what I was doing.  I was a design minor and anthropology major at State and the business officially “launched” while I was still in school full-time.  A study abroad program in photography in Prague, six months at a job that was a bad fit, and here we are.  So far, the plane has (mostly) flown.  And it has all been a result of a lot of grace and a lot of people believing in me.  It’s not something I take lightly.

If this is your first time here, I hope you find something you love.  Creating art, for any artist, is like taking this little piece of ourselves and putting it out on display for anyone walking by to criticize.  Or praise.  Or ignore.  It can be a difficult place.  But, photography gives worth to people.  It never fails when I walk into a living room or an office or watch someone’s wallet open and I am brought face to face with images I captured.  They’re printed and tangible and alive.  The owner of these loves them and cherishes them and I am always a bit speechless.  It’s incredible to create something that has such an effect on others.

We’ve got a ton of new things for you to discover!  All new galleries that are brighter, cleaner, and easier to navigate.  If you are a previous client, don’t worry, your links and passwords still work. 🙂  This blog has been created specifically for all things business related.  You’ll find us bragging about our clients, other artists, and tips on lots of things.  Later this week, I’ll give you a few ways to take better photos when you’re standing in front of the camera.  I’ve got a couple of my favorite tricks that nearly every client deems crazy at the time – then they see the results.  On the whole, we want this to serve as a place where we can connect with you and share with you!

Part of the new season is an addition of a permanent administrative assistant.  Please welcome Alison Kendrick to the team with all the kindness you normally extend to me.  You’ll see her around a little and, if you email us, you’ll certainly talk to her a lot!  She is an absolute firecracker and I am so so excited she’s here!

Say hi, Alison!

Say hi, Alison!

All things going well, we will be moving into our very own studio space in downtown Cary by the end of the month!  Keep an eye out for the open house party announcements (can we say food trucks?!) so you can come meet Alison and see some other great local artisans.  Unfortunately, I (Amaris) won’t be able to attend, so y’all – please go in my place.

However, the reason I must miss it is kind of incredible.  All things going well, I will be somewhere in Europe as I travel to Milan, Italy to capture this amazing couple’s wedding day.  World, meet Fabrizio & Alice.  Yes, as of this fall, we are an international photography studio.  I cannot wait for these images.

There’s some other amazing things happening this fall, as well, but we’ll save them for another time.  It is a new season and I am trying to take it all in one day at a time.  Thank you for cheerleading!  It means everything in the world.  This plane flies because of your investment and adoration and I am unable to properly put my gratitude into words.

We are so glad you’re here.
Let’s get started, shall we?

xoxo
amaris

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