Life Lately List: March 9, 2015

Happy March! Did you all remember to switch your clocks if your in the Daylight Savings Time Zone? I had to catch a flight on Sunday. Remind me never to book a flight the day of Daylight Savings Time. I made it with no problem but I was kind worried all night long that we didn’t plan it correctly.

Little updates:

  • We are still working on the trailer. This past weekend was a benchmark day because we were able to move furniture back into the bedroom and sleep in a bed, rather than on the floor. Im sure you can imagine the relief.
  • We are working on a Client Magazine, jam packed with our info we think you need for the best wedding photography planned wedding day. Im pretty excited since Ive been wanting to make this happen for years!
  • It’s been REALLY cold at the Outer Banks. I think it might even be the coldest winter they have had in years. Its a good thing we have a few Maine winters in our blood to toughen us up.
  • I forgot about NC winters though, they are very indecisive. Its goes from 25 degrees to 70 in the span of 24 hours. One day last week it was warm enough to wear a tank top, so I painted our porch ceiling a sweet light blue, on par with the southern tradition of blue ceilings. I love it so much!
  • Next month we go to Iceland. That is a crazy sentence to write. I am so stoked!

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Vendor Spotlight: Corrie of CW Drawings

Today we have the pleasure of featuring Corrie from CW Drawings! She has an Etsy shop that you most certainly need to check out since she creates beautiful pencil drawings straight from your wedding photos! Its a gorgeous way to showcase your wedding. When we first saw her work, we reached out immediately to talk to her since we thought you NEEDED to know about what she does. It’s that good. There is a coupon code at the bottom of the post so read on…

Meet Corrie of CW Drawings:


(photo by Dulet Creative)

Before we dig in, lets meet you! Can you tell us a little more about yourself?

My name is Corrie and I live in Chicagoland, which is where I was born and raised. I love the first cup of coffee in the morning while my calico kitty, Noreen, curls up on my lap. That first cup of coffee usually turns into a second and third fairly quickly! I’m a quality time girl, so spending time with the people I love and investing in those relationships is really important to me.

Amen Sister! We sound like kindred spirits. You do amazing work. How did you come to be so talented?

Thank you! I’ve always been a creative person. Growing up I was the girl entering all the art competitions, while on the other hand looking awkward in gym class, which I now know isn’t rare for creatives! It was my junior year of high school that I drew my first portrait, and from there on out I was hooked! I studied art in college and would turn any project into a portrait if I could. Coincidentally I studied painting, but I am now back to my first love, which is pencil drawings!

Nick&Claire3Tell us about your idea and how you brought it to life as a business.

I’ve taken commissioned portrait work as side projects since I graduated from the university (6 yrs ago) and decided to open up an Etsy shop in 2013 as a way to put my work on the web to have an avenue online to sell my custom portraits. I didn’t do anything to promote my work at the time since I had a full-time job elsewhere, but more-so took jobs as they came organically to me. Last summer I decided to take the leap into full-time business with a focus on custom pencil portrait work, specifically weddings. I’ve been intentionally working at growing my business ever since!

What is the process for a wedding couple to have one of your portraits?

Couples can get in touch with me either before or after their wedding day! If before, the couple books with me their portraits so once they’ve had their wedding & have received their photos from their photographer, we can get to work right away on choosing the best image to translate to a drawing. It’s important to me to connect with the photographer before I use their work, so either myself or the couple will reach out to get permission! It’s been really fun to also connect with wedding photographers through this process as well!

ClaireKolavo_EditedWhat makes the best photographic image for a portrait?

This is a great question, because there are definitely certain photos that work best! I’ll start out by saying that the typical “smile at the camera” looks great in a photo, but does not always translate well to a drawing. Candid, more serious photos work really well. They create a mood suited for drawing! If it’s a drawing of the bride & groom together, I love the photos of them looking at each other while they are “in a moment”. For individual portraits the same is true. A candid, more romantic photograph is great. I do specialize in portraits, so what that means is I’m looking for photos that are typically waist up since I give most of my attention to detail in the face.

I love that you are looking for that “in a moment” photograph for your drawings, because that’s what we look for in a photograph too! Why do you think that works best for creating “a mood suited for drawing?”

It’s because those are the moments that display the most emotion. An expression caught in a moment is a lot different than a smile requested – it’s a moment unscripted that tells a story. It’s an over the shoulder glance, it’s a lingering look of a groom to his bride, it’s the moments that highlight the emotions going on inside as it comes across through a photograph, and from there can become a truly timeless drawing.

Why should a couple invest in this type of artwork?

What I love about these drawings is they truly become a family treasure, a true heirloom. Drawing in general is a timeless art, so with the portraits I create, it’s something to pass on for generations. I had customer say to me that if her house was burning down, she’d grab the portrait I drew for her and the quilt a family member made by hand. It was one of the biggest compliments I had ever received because it spoke to the exact reason why I do this type of work!


The images that these drawings were drawn from we taken by the following photographers: Aimee Mazzenga Photography,  Kate Weinstein Photography, and June and Jae Photography

If you want your very own original piece from Corrie, you can use this 10% off coupon code in her shop for the next two weeks! 

Etsy Shop:



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Blogging Workflow for Wedding Photographers

One reoccurring complaint I hear fellow photographers say is that they are backed up with their blog posts, not having kept up with blogging their sessions and shoots during the busy time of year. I am here to tell you how you can keep up! Our blogging workflow is really simple and I wholeheartedly believe that anyone can do it. All you have to do it commit!

The Golden Rule of Photography Blogging: The shoot is not finished until you have the blog post scheduled!

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Before the wedding:

1. Get the vendor information from your client. This is something you should already be doing so you can start to build you vendor relationships and reach out to them with a “virtual handshake.”

2. Start a drafted blogpost with that information, adding all the vendors and their websites. We also like to add links to any other posts that the couple was featured with already, like their engagement session. Don’t write the blog post content yet because you actually need to experience the shoot to sincerely write about it. If you try to get ahead with this one, your blog post will feel inauthentic and thats never ever good.

After the wedding is edited:

1.  Once you finish editing your images and they are uploading to your online gallery for your clients, go through the edited set again and choose your favorites. For a wedding with us, thats around 100 images. Copy those “favorites” images into a new folder. We use these images for submission and album design and portfolio reviews later on in the process.

2. Go through those “favorites” and choose your ABSOLUTE favorites that you would be willing to have on your blog, showing off your best work. This usually is about 30 images for us. Ideally we get the blog posts down to 15 but we are never successful at that. Now copy those images into a new folder called “bloggers.” One major mistake I see photographers make is posting a gazillion images in the blog post. Try your best to keep it to the best of the best and dont post images that are very similar to the other photos in the post. Make this your showcase, not a wedding album.

3. Open Blogstomp and import those “blogger” images. If you don’t have blogstomp, stop here and go get it right now. It is an indispensable tool for keeping your workflows fast. We really could not imagine photography life without it. Watermark all your blog images.

4. Open your blog platform and upload those watermarked images to your already drafted blogpost. Write a little bit about the day and your couple. If you don’t really love writing, you can make this short and sweet. Most people reading your blog are there for the photos anyway right? It’s completely up to your style and preference.

5. Choose the date and time you want you blog post to go live and schedule it. We are just starting to use coschedule which integrates multiple social media platforms into your very own blogging calendar, so your blog post will be shared multiple times AND in the places you want to share it. Its kind of changing my life.

6. The last thing I do is schedule the posts social media shares via coschedule and Latergram.

7. BOOM! You did it and you dont have to worry about getting backed up with sessions that are not blogged!!!

After the post goes live:

1. SHARE YOUR POST! If you are using coschedule, your blog posts is going to be shared on a couple of platforms wthout you having to log in and do that manually.  For us this includes Facebook, Google+ and Twitter. We also manually share the blog post on Instagram and Pinterest.

2. Email your clients that their blog post is live.

I betcha that if you do this process while your images are uploading to your client gallery, you’ll finish this long before they are done. This way when your shoot is ready to hand off to your client, you already have their blog post ready to go. Sometimes I can even get the shoot submitted to a blog before they are done! Can you even imagine getting all that done and never being behind?? No one is perfect but this will definitely help you to get more things done efficiently as far as blogging goes.

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Meet Our Couples: Meg and Devin

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First Names: Meg and Devin
Hometowns: Devin – Guilford, NY; Meg – Weymouth, MA
Occupations: Devin – Director of Software Engineering; Meg – Product Manager

Wedding Date: 05.30.2015
Location: Central Bistro, Downtown Crossing, Boston, MA
Colors: Lavender and Yellow
Vibe you are going for: Whimsical with a fun dance party

Let’s hear your love story! Devin and I officially met when we began working together in 2008. We had seen each other around the office previously (we worked for the same company, but different divisions). Although I don’t remember this, Devin actually interviewed me for my position with his division. We didn’t work closely together until 2010, when Devin joined my project team.

While working together on this project, I went over to Devin’s desk to ask him a question. While I was there, I saw he was listening to the band Phoenix on Pandora. We started discussing our mutual love of alternative rock and this led to other conversations where we realized we have a lot in common.

Shortly after, we went on our first date, at what was my (and is now also Devin’s) favorite restaurant, Toro. We were seated at an amazing table in the front corner right by the window. There was an immediate connection. We shared tapas, a bottle of wine, and a lot of laughs. We had an amazing time.

And, the rest, as they say, is history.

What’s your favorite thing to do on any given Saturday together? We love to spend the morning lazing around – I watch my guilty pleasure, trashy reality shows while Devin plays his video games. We then like to spend the afternoons wandering around the city, sampling new bars/restaurants and window-shopping. We then round out the evening with a tasty dinner and dance the night away at one of our favorite live music venues.

What is one trait that you love about in your fiance? Just one?! One of the many things I love about Devin is his adventurous spirit. He is always up for anything. And he is always finding us something new to try – whether it be a new artist to listen to or a new restaurant to try.

How did you/he pop the question?  Our engagement took place at Toro. It happened on May 3, 2014, which was a beautiful Saturday in Boston. I had spent the day at my friend Shayna’s spa, and came home in a great mood. Devin suggested we go to Toro for dinner, which I never turn down. We watched the Kentucky Derby together and then headed out for dinner. There was (of course) a wait when we arrived at the restaurant, but we were able to be seated at the bar after not too much time. Devin surprised me by popping the question after dinner. I immediately burst out in tears and was finally able to say “Yes!” (after asking a few times “Are you sure?”).

Who was the first person you told about your engagement? I immediately emailed my parents and my 4 sisters! Devin’s parents were already aware it was happening, as he had told them ahead of time.

How did you decide where you wanted to get married? We decided on Boston since this is where we currently live, and this is the city where most of our guests either live or are familiar with. We wanted a venue with after-party options and hotels nearby. We decided on Central Bistro because of its central location and theme that is very much our style.

What has been your favorite part of wedding planning? I am a planner, so I have loved most of the elements of wedding planning. My favorites are the aspects of wedding planning that have offered moments for Devin and I to spend together – such as our dinner tasting, cake tasting, and our engagement photo session.

What do you look forward to the most about being married? I can’t wait for all of the adventures that lie ahead of us! And for being officially a two-person team with my favorite person in the whole world. I couldn’t be any luckier.

 See Meg and Devin’s Engagement Session Here: Meghan and Devin


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Featured: Maine Magazine Wedding Issue 2015

We are really proud that two of our weddings last year were featured in Maine Magazine’s Wedding Issue this month. Being featured in print is so satisfying and feels like we really are doing good work that people enjoy. As artists thats all we can ask for. Liz and Chip’s Blueberry fields soiree, and Emily and Kate’s backyard bash were coincidentally both held on the same little lake in East Orland, Maine. Maybe we should go take a dip in it for good luck for next years issue. We will wait until summer of course.


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