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Monday Mash-Up

Goooooood morning Vietnam! I always try to tailor that phrase to wherever I currently am, but it’s hard. The location you’re naming must have three syllables, and the emphasis has to fall on the last syllable. So if I were to try to use “Virigina” as the “Good morning ____” I’d just end up sounding ridiculous. Side note- did y’all know that Vietnam is a popular honeymoon destination for a lot of European couples?

As always, lessons learned/things that happened over the weekend:

  • I’ve been to Reston Town Center four times in the past five days. I’m now on a first name basis with the security guard who threatened to call the police if I come there to shoot again without the proper permission.:)
  • I’ve been to Anthropologie and Paper Source almost as many times as above. I think I have an addiction.
  • I for sure have an addiction to Anthro mugs [see below]. But seriously- it was too cute not to buy! And I had a gift card. So it’s totally fair. Right?
  • There’s a gelato place at Town Center that serves chocolate hazelnut gelato- OH MY WORD. It’s like eating a frozen Ferrero Rocher. So freaking good.
  • I finally started training for the Marine Corps Marathon… three weeks later than I was supposed to have started. Whoops! I did the same thing last time and was just fine, so let’s hope I’m just as fortunate this time. We did nine on Saturday and I felt great!
  • I keep buying new stuff for fun giveaways on the blog but then I forget to do the actual contest. Maybe it’s time for one of those soon!
  • This week on the blog is going to be pretty darn sweet. I have one, maybe two film shoots to share! Yessss.

Check out the latest addition to my addiction collection!

Anthropologie housewares mug

Happy Monday!

sarah b. - July 25, 2012 - 11:00 pm

love love love the mug! super cute!

Karen Field - July 23, 2012 - 9:00 pm

Did you know that there was a Pride and Prejudice “sequel” that takes place in Vietnam? And yes, I’ve read it! Love the mug!

Jean - July 23, 2012 - 9:57 am

Love the mug!

Janelle C - July 23, 2012 - 8:50 am

LOL! At the security guard knowing you by your first name! That cup is the cutest!!!!

caitlin elizabeth - July 23, 2012 - 8:43 am

so pretty :)

Mia Bjerring - July 23, 2012 - 8:43 am

The mug is so cute! And I have no idea that a lot of European couples have their honeymoon in Vietnam! Can’t wait to see the beautiful film shoots! Have a great week!

Stephen - July 23, 2012 - 8:40 am

Ah the bliss of security guards. Photographer does equal terrorist after all :)

Anna K. - July 23, 2012 - 8:40 am

I love the pattern on this coffee cup!

More random snapshots caught on film

When I first started shooting manually, I made myself bring my camera everywhere. And I mean EVERYWHERE. To the grocery store, to my parents’ house, out with friends, church, etc. It forced me to learn to shoot in all different sorts of lighting situations, and it trained me to photograph on the fly. It was one of the best possible things I could have done for myself as a photographer. So naturally, when I began to experiment with color film, I began the same practice all over again. This turned out to be quite a bit more expensive than it was with just my mkii, but it’s been so good for me! Because film + developing is so expensive, you have to be intentional about each and every shutter click. So I can’t shoot as freely as I did with my digital camera, but even the practice of pulling out my light meter and testing for settings is teaching me more than I ever knew about light.

I sent a few rolls from my Contax 645 into Indie Film Lab and I’m really pleased with how they turned out! All of these images are straight out of camera, save one or two dust spots that I clone stamped out.
Contax 645 Fuji400H photography

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These next shots are 35mm Portra400, developed at a local Ritz Camera. Apparently I have a subconscious preoccupation with taking photos of delicious food?

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Portra400 35mm film photography

Happy Friday!

Sophia J - July 31, 2012 - 6:55 pm

Thank thank THANK you for the advice on that “Film is Not Dead Book”. It is definitely encouraging me to try color film for serious now…I only learned and used film in my photo classes back in college.

And yes, I do know your hubby :) Not very well but definitely met him a few times at CRU. Also, you know a lot of my friends as well!!

Happy shooting!

Laura Gordon - July 20, 2012 - 2:50 pm

FREAKING gorgeous! Love these :) Yay for film!!!!

Rebekah Hoyt - July 20, 2012 - 1:03 pm

Ahh! That corn one is so cute! Love that you are getting so good at film!

Abby - July 20, 2012 - 12:20 pm

absolutely beautiful.

Jean - July 20, 2012 - 11:52 am

Great photos, Abby. Cute, cute kid shots!

Sydni Jackson - July 20, 2012 - 11:52 am

I love reading about your adventures in film! My fave shot is the first one of the little girl on the tree stump – so dreamy

Christine - July 20, 2012 - 11:38 am

I love these! There is something about film that makes images that much more special. Great work as always Abby!!

BrotherEthan - July 20, 2012 - 10:40 am

Hey, look my Yellow Pants and bow tie are famous!

Love Everlasting- John & Hannah’s Richmond wedding

Their love began with a somewhat-of-a-joke proposal for a first date in the library at JMU. As she laughed and said, John remembers thinking Hannah was way too beautiful to be interested in him. Destiny has a way of giving us way more than we ever think we deserve, though, and three and a half years later John and Hannah found themselves atop a mountain at sunrise. As John knelt to the ground and uttered those words that every woman in love wants to hear, fireworks erupted in the distance. A little over a year later, John and Hannah sat calmly in separate rooms of the church, preparing for the biggest day of their lives. Neither nervous, neither showing a hint of anxiety. Both simply ready, excited and overjoyed at the blessing of marrying the one that was made for them.

John and Hannah, your wedding day was such a joy to witness. Seeing how each of your families adored you all, both individually and together, was such a testament that you absolutely belong together. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for the honor of documenting your memories! I hope the Dominican Republic treated you well:)

The day began at the Shady Grove United Methodist Church

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Oh Hannah, you are so stunning! So so beautiful!

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WORK. IT. OUT girls! It was something like 103 degrees outside (no exaggeration), and these girls were so awesome about it!

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NICE job, guys :).

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Married!

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The lighting in this church was divine. So warm and lovely! I was about to squeeze Hannah- we had almost an entire hours for just bride and groom portraits. Heaven!

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You guys!! You’re so adorable!

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Favorites.

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We headed over to the Monpelier Center for Arts & Education where we had time for a few more portraits before their big entrance…

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Love sparkler exits!

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Happy Thursday!!

Kari Jeanne - July 20, 2012 - 10:26 am

Love her smile!!! Beautiful job :)

Katelyn James - July 20, 2012 - 12:33 am

aww I love hannah!! and you got to hangout with KELLEY! One of my roomies! (she was a bridesmaid… the super pretty one:) haha j/k, they’re all beautiful. Especially Hannah! whew! You go girl!!!

Jean - July 19, 2012 - 5:14 pm

Simply beautiful!

Rebekah Hoyt - July 19, 2012 - 4:28 pm

WOW Abby! Those portraits are all SO natural, relaxed, and romantic. You really did a wonderful job capturing their sweet love. Beautiful!!! Congratulations Hannah and John!!

Hannah Rancourt - July 19, 2012 - 2:00 pm

So beautiful!!!!

Katie - July 19, 2012 - 1:36 pm

Abby! Another amazing post and wedding! :) they are a good looking couple.

molly - July 19, 2012 - 12:56 pm

they are the cutest!! I LOVE THIS!!

Janelle C - July 19, 2012 - 12:30 pm

Beautiful couple!!! I loved the church shots! Great job Abby!

Wendy {Weswen Design} - July 19, 2012 - 12:20 pm

Beautiful as always, Abby! Loving the green bridesmaid dresses. What a great shade!

Lessons Learned: loving your workspace (my home office!)

Our first apartment was something like 800 square feet with one bedroom, a sweet kitchen, and a small living room. Having no real place for a dining room table, we settled for a pub table with two chairs for our main dining space. We didn’t put into consideration that I was growing a small business and that I’d need a place to work, so when the time came for me to need a place to edit, I ended up taking over the pub table. I think we shared… four meals at that table? Whoops!

It wasn’t ideal by any stretch- I spent hours every evening and on weekends sitting in a wooden, straight-backed chair, hunched over my keyboard at a too-small table that had space for nothing but a computer. I had nowhere to store things like hard drives, card readers and notebooks, and as for the rest of my business-related stuff? It took over the bottom tier of the one bookshelf we owned. It started out being mostly ok- since I wasn’t doing too much business, I didn’t own a lot of business-related property. But as the year passed, my collection of capital grew and I slowly began to take over the living room. Things were always cluttered, always disheveled, and I was SO ready to have my own space. When we began searching for our next apartment, we knew we needed a second bedroom for me to turn into an office. We found the perfect place for us about twenty minutes from our first apartment, so come moving day I was READY! I had boxes marked “Abby’s office!!” and made sure I was the one carry everything into my new space. That night, after our friends had gone home and we were flat exhausted, I still managed to pull myself into my new office and begin to unpack. Getting things settled in my office was even more important to me than getting my clothes unpacked!

The office has been a work in progress over the past six months, but I think I’m finally happy with it! During my last few months at the day job, I sat dreaming about spending hours working in my new office, and when June 1st finally rolled around I was positively SQUEALING with delight that I get to work in this awesome space, a room just for ME to do what I love! This office is my favorite place in our apartment, and it’s hard to close the door to it every night. Enjoy the tour of my personal space!

I’m a morning person- I LOVE getting up early and starting work as soon as I can. So it was really important to me that my office be full of light in the AM, because a) I love light and 2) I love mornings. We lucked out- my office is full of sunshine by the time I reach my desk at 8 am!

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I first saw the idea for a huge client organizational board here, and my favorite graphic designer Wendy helped me come up with one perfectly tailored to my needs, as well as a smaller chart to track progress on each individual project! Now I just need to update it with my new logo.:)

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I LOVE my desk. It belonged to my Mimi and sat in my parents house for the longest time, and my dad (being the lover-of-throwing-things-out that he is), offered to let me have it when we had a space big enough to allow for it. Antique desk for the win!

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My favorite Anthropologie candle and the air plant my best friend Sarah gave me for Christmas- feelin so SoCal.

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Another gem from Anthro- I bought this mug last December and wouldn’t let myself use it until my first day as a full-time photographer. Let me tell you- that was the most glorious cup of tea I’ve ever had. Also, check out these rad cork coasters! I’m definitely doing a giveaway of these sometime soon!

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This key from Williamsburg, VA was given to my Granny by her mother some 40 years ago, and when I was visiting last week she gave it to me!

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How sweet is that bookend??

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A slightly different take on a DIY project I found on Promise Tangeman’s blog

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I freaking LOVE this shelf. I found the wall brackets at Anthropologie and knew right away that I wanted a thick piece of dark shelving to sit on top of them, so I contacted Brian at Concepts Created and he made one for me out of reclaimed wood from a bank built in the 1820′s.

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Can you tell I’m slightly obsessed with this display?

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We’ve reached the favorite part of my whole office- my loveseat! I searched for MONTHS to find the perfect loveseat (you wouldn’t believe how hard it is to find a PINK couch), and I finally stumbled upon this gem at World Market. Well then a sales rep went and broke my heart and told me it was no longer in production (then WHY is it on display on your website??), but I kept checking back and they finally had it in stock again. Them sales reps be cray cray.

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Lily hangs out on the footrest of our squashy brown leather chair all day. I love it:)

Washington DC Virginia modern wedding photographer home officeWashington DC Virginia modern wedding photographer home officeThe end! Happy Wednesday!

 

Alli Cain - July 20, 2012 - 11:07 am

Haha great taste! That button love seat has been on my wishlist! :-) Your office looks wonderful! Perfect mix of business/professional, relaxing, and comfortable.

Rici - July 19, 2012 - 2:44 am

What a nice home office and yes you have a reallyyyyy coooool shelf! jealous over here! ;-) Saluti from Tuscany!!!

Laura Gordon - July 18, 2012 - 11:25 pm

Um! Freaking LOVE your office space Abby! I am obsessed with all of that light and THAT DESK… ah… AND that GOLDDDDD key! So many pretty things in one space :) It’s perf <3

Ashley Link - July 18, 2012 - 8:27 pm

congrats! it looks beautiful! so so exciting! i love your office! it’s so you! :)

Faye Bernoulli - July 18, 2012 - 6:49 pm

I’m currently doing the living room takeover :) Luckily my husband doesn’t mind, and at least I have a comfy chair and big desk to do work, but I can’t wait until we finally move into a house to get my own office!

Megan Roldan - July 18, 2012 - 12:37 pm

Your home office is adorable! Love all the accents and decorations, it is so you!

Alyssa Noble - July 18, 2012 - 11:18 am

Girl this is soo cute!! This office is totally you! and I loveee this post because having a good place to work/study/do crafts etc is very essential. I’m a clean and organized freak a lot of times and I can’t function if stuff around me isn’t neat and organized. I like how you are writing blogs about lots of things lately! I always love to hear what you have to say <3 Lyssa

Marisa - July 18, 2012 - 11:11 am

Love the office! Mine is still in that “work in progress” stage. But, I have a vision and slowly its coming together. I absolutely LOVE the organizational board. Do you just have a regular cut of glass (that came with the frame) over top of the board that you write on with dry erase? I desperately need to update my organizational system and this could be the ticket item!

Jean - July 18, 2012 - 10:30 am

What a nice office. I hope I can see it in person some day. I love the whole thing.

Natalie Young - July 18, 2012 - 10:29 am

Beautiful office Abby! Where did you get that peach cushion with the buttons from?? i love it!

Abbey - July 18, 2012 - 10:25 am

Love your office Abby. Makes me wanna come over and hang out on the couch!!

Hannah Rancourt - July 18, 2012 - 10:18 am

OHMYGOSH! I have been looking forward to this since you mentioned having an office, so like 6 months???? It’s SO YOU!!!!! I love what you have done with the space and I love that you get to hangout with your sweet pup all day too! Even though you are working there is something about being home all day with your animals that makes them feel loved.

Elizabeth - July 18, 2012 - 10:16 am

your office is so cute! i love it!

Mia Bjerring - July 18, 2012 - 10:10 am

Your workspace looks amazing Abby! I understand why you love being in there! :)

Clarisse - July 18, 2012 - 10:08 am

What a gorgeous place for you to do all of your gorgeous work!

Currie - July 18, 2012 - 10:05 am

Ahh I love it Abby!!! This is awesome!

Rebekah Hoyt - July 18, 2012 - 10:03 am

OH. MY. GOSH. Where do I begin?!! I ADORE your office! It’s so YOU!!! So here are a list of my favorite things:
1. The whole thing
2. Your production wall
3. All the KEYS!
4. The terrarium!
5. Cameras galore!
6. The cotton? Glorious!
7. The string of pictures
8. The shelf with the AG and the cameras and the brackets – AMAZING!
9. Your loveseat!!!
10. Lily – of course :)

Gabby Tuesday- Finding Balance

For some reason, I find it incredibly difficult to come up with topics for Gabby Tuesdays. Maybe it’s because I actually have to prepare else I sit in front of my camera for an hour doing take after take, whereas with a blog post I can simply go back and edit whenever I feel like. Who knows! Today’s Gabby Tuesday is about trying to find balance for those of y’all working a full-time career + wedding photography. I did this for two years, so while I’m definitely no expert (AT ALL), perhaps y’all can learn from my mistakes!

Lily stole a key piece to my tripod so I ended up attaching my camera with painter’s tape. So ghetto fabulous. Enjoy!

Happy Tuesday!

Rebekah Hoyt - July 18, 2012 - 9:07 am

Ahh – this is something I am most definitely working on! Not biting off more than I can chew. Thanks for the reminder to set healthy boundaries to find balance!

Stacey Dinch - July 17, 2012 - 10:22 pm

Great advice Abby! What’s the name of the app you can use to schedule Tweets & Facebook updates? I would be so much happier if I didn’t have to keep watching over my shoulder for my boss when I take the time to update my social media ;)

Jean - July 17, 2012 - 9:45 pm

I love your enthusiasm. Love your videos.

Jill Samter Photography - July 17, 2012 - 6:44 pm

Abby, I LOVE LOVE LOVE your new header and layout! Beautiful job! Congrats on all the things you have learned already going full-time!

Blessings,
Jill

Elizabeth - July 17, 2012 - 1:33 pm

Love your outfit! Great advice, too; thanks for sharing your words of wisdom :)

Julie Flury - July 17, 2012 - 12:14 pm

AMEN girl! I can totally relate to a lot that you said. Thanks for sharing!

Wendy {Weswen Design} - July 17, 2012 - 8:56 am

Great post! Finding balance is the key to success and happiness!