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She once put a rotten banana on my chair, so I would splatter it all over my pants when I sat down to dinner. We would fight about who looked prettier in dresses; she’d never trust me to do her hair because I would make a knotty mess out of it, and I would hide her toys to make her miserable. Dad used to tell us to get along, because when he and mom weren’t around anymore, the only true family we’d have left would be one another.

As adults, my sister is one of the greatest blessings in my life. She is my closest friend and my girls adore her. So when I found out our second baby would be another girl, I was thrilled, I wanted them to have each other like my sister and I have each other. Exactly five and a half years apart, just like us, my girls can fight like it’s the coolest thing since ice-cream. They pull each other’s hair and scream at each other in frustration, they can even be mean when the other gets hurt and laugh instead of showing compassion (only sometimes). But I have also heard the most beautiful words spoken between them and seen¬†unexpected acts of kindness shared.¬†This weekend we were taking some shots and I got the most amazing display of sisterly affection. I may just print a couple and hold them up like peace flags in the middle of their next argument.

Click here to see the full slideshow.

I’m a wedding photographer based in Atlanta, GA. Please visit my wedding photography portfolio to view more of my work.

 

 

 

Back in June I was so fortunate to collaborate with some awesome vendors in the Atlanta area to put together this bridal photo shoot inspired by summers in the South.

My friend and talented designer Misty Smith created the rustic chic tablescape, with garden inspired accessories that gave the setting an airy, charming vibe.

This photo shoot was published by the fabulous ladies at Sparkle and Hay bridal blog, one of my favorite publications for rustic chic wedding inspiration. Enjoy!

Designer:  Misty Smith

Gowns and Accessories:  Etain Bridal Boutique

Hair and Make-up:  ST Hair, Sharon Tranter and Rachel Busbee

Cake:  Martha Arango

Violin: Music & Arts, Peachtree City

I’m a wedding photographer based in Atlanta, Georgia. Please visit our wedding photography portfolio for more of our work.

Vizcaya Gardens remains one of the most beautiful places to photograph in Miami, and it was the perfect backdrop for Arletty’s elaborate quinceanera gowns. Looking like she had hopped out of a storybook, she sashayed her way around blossom lines pathways and statues like a true princess. My favorites from the shoot:

Click here to see a slideshow of Arletty’s session.

I am a wedding photographer based in Atlanta, Georgia and available for travel nationwide. Please visit our website to view our Atlanta wedding photography portfolio.

On the car ride to her photo shoot location, Dany and I talked. She was wrapped in a cloud of fluffy while tulle; feeling beautiful and a little apprehensive like every  fifteen year old girls who gets to be princess for a day in the customary cuban fashion.

We talked and covered boys, college, classes, and friends in a short twenty minutes. Although it always boils down to the same topics; I love having a glimpse into these girls lives, their distinctive personalities and their fresh, reachable dreams. Dany in particular is kind of quiet and shy but has big plans, and I have a feeling she may just make them real.

Here are my favorites from her session:

I am a wedding photographer based in Atlanta, Georgia. Please visit my wedding photography site for more information.

  • Daniela Pinoah says:

    I loved all the pictures, thank you so much. Can’t wait to see the album. I had fun :) you’re the best <3

I love it when one of my sweet¬†nice couples refer to me their equally nice friends. Brittany, Justin and I hadn’t officially met in person before their engagement session today, and I was so glad to find that we hit it off immediately and had an absolute blast.

The chemistry between these two is off the charts! As I uploaded their images from our time together and worked them, I couldn’t help but feel the sparks flying between them.

Brittany and Justin: Thank you so much for allowing me to orchestrate and document this celebration of your commitment to each other, and be witness to your bond. Keep holding on to one another tight!

We started at the field where Justin coaches football. After a lot of persuasion, he has finally turned his better half into a Missouri fan…

Brittany you looked so cute in your Missouri¬†University tee it’s not even funny.¬†:)

I believe the following set is my favorite:

Then they glammed it up several notches for some shots out on the town.

There is more! View the complete slideshow of Brittany and Justin here.

I’m a professional wedding photographer based in Atlanta, Georgia. Visit my wedding photography portfolio here.

  • Ron says:

    Missouri University – Missouri State is in Springield!!!!! GO TIGERS!!!!!!! OH THE PICTURES ARE GREAT My favorites are the black and white’s

  • Odalys says:

    Thanks for the correction Ron! Goes to show you how much I know about college football ;)

  • Ron says:

    Oh I just viewed the slideshow favorite picture is the one where you are sitting down.

I feel like it’s Christmas morning every time I get a shipment of wedding albums. Maybe it’s the fact that I am an avid reader and books appeal to me. Seeing the¬†story of a wedding told through a beautifully bound leather book makes the memories tangible and ever-lasting. I love the feeling of picking up a fat, heavy, luxurious volume and sitting down with a cup of tea to look through old memories.

I believe a great wedding album should be timeless, so I keep mine clean and simple. I want my brides to be just as proud of their investment twenty years from now as they were when they received it. This one was a gorgeous Italian gray leather with a modern square layout and lettering.

The inside design is as streamlined as the exterior. I avoid busy collages that take away from the main focus: beautiful images that tell the story of the day.

A companion album is a smaller, more portable version of the wedding¬†book. It can easily be taken with you to work or¬†get-togethers to share with wedding memories with your friends and family.¬†They also make excellent thank-you gifts to parents. They are classic and chic covered in buttery leather and engraved with the bride and groom’s names or a special quote.

I am a wedding photographer in Atlanta, GA and other places too. Please visit our wedding photography portfolio for samples of our work.

It was colder than usual for a May afternoon yesterday, when Marie, Shane and I met for their engagement session. But the chilly weather was just the perfect excuse to snuggle up for these two lovebirds. Shane has this remarkable ability to make Marie laugh and I was delighted to see them interact and capture their undeniable chemistry.

This couple is extremely crafty and detail oriented. Every time we get together I get exponentially more excited about their wedding, that is going to be packed with thoughtful details and tokens of their relationship. I have a feeling it will also be a very emotional, special day and I can’t wait to document it.

Here is their very sweet sneak peek.

To view Marie and Shane’s engagement session slideshow, click here.

I am a wedding photographer serving Atlanta, Miami, and other places too. Please visit our wedding photography website for more fabulous wedding photos.

  • Marie says:

    It is true, Shane and I had a great time despite the weather. It was 60¬įF (or lower) in mid May which is very odd for Georgia. Odalys was easy going and relaxed making the experience wonderful. She not only encouraged me to post her slide show, she told me how to do it.

    We cannot wait to work with Odalys again!

  • Kevin Smith, DC says:

    Great photos! You both look great. Best wishes for a wonderful life together!

Whether you are a bride about to walk down the aisle, have an upcoming engagement photo shoot, or your are attending a wedding this year, many of us feel clueless when it comes to posing and looking our best in photographs. You do not have to be 5‚Äô9‚ÄĚ and 130 lbs to look fabulous in your wedding photos. As a professional photographer I can assure you that for every great photo of a model you see in a magazine, there were twenty or more not-so great images, and the ones that make the final cut went through extensive retouching and Photoshop maneuvering to eliminate blemishes, bulges, and enhance the model‚Äôs features. You can look absolutely ah-mazing on your photos by following a few simple tips and letting your photographer create magic :)

Face

  • The #1 piece of advice I can give all brides or anyone about to have a major photo shoot is to have your hair and make-up done by a professional. These people are trained specifically to know facial structure and color theory to compliment your natural beauty. Most reputable hair stylists and make-up artist can do a complimentary trial run so you can rehearse your look before the important date.

 

  • Do your hair in a way that looks elegant and polished, yet it is not a complete departure from your every day look. Remember you are supposed to feel confident and beautiful. Ditch super-rigid or slicked back do‚Äôs or tight, corkscrew curls in favor of soft, silky waves and more relaxed up do‚Äôs. Avoid an over-abundance of mousses and sprays that can weigh your hair down and make it look stiff and unnatural.

 

  • Use enough makeup to enhance your features, without overwhelming them.

 

  • Go for foundations that have a yellow or beige-tinted base rather than a pink base. We all have some yellow or beige in our skin and choosing foundations in this color gamut gives us a healthy glow, while pink foundations cast a dull, unhealthy look to our complexion.

 

  • Avoid overly-glittery shadows and lip glosses, especially if your event is in daylight, these can make you look garish and reflect light unfavorably. Go for soft shimmery or matte shadows and lipstick instead. Another reason to use lipstick rather than gloss, the latter seems to be a magnet for loose strands of hair at the most inopportune times, like while saying your vows. Stay away from lip liner that is darker than your lipstick and use a nude liner to keep color from bleeding into your skin instead.

 

  • Line and define your eyes with a soft liner or dark shadow; brown, plum or navy look best. Stay away from black as it can look too severe, unless you are going to a rock concert :)

 

  • Blend, blend, blend the contours.

 

  • If your wedding is outdoors, keep your makeup as natural as possible.

 

  • Avoid alcohol the night of and before your wedding, it can make you look flushed and make your skin and eyes look tired, and your body bloated. Instead, drink plenty of water during the two days prior to the big day and get rest. They call it beauty sleep for a reason ;)

Posing for the camera

  • Posture is crucial. Stand up straight; it takes pounds and years off your appearance. Wearing heels has a very positive effect on posture; they automatically straighten your back and help you look more streamlined and elegant.

 

  • Turn at about a 45 degree angle to the camera, with your weight on the front leg. Bend your front knee slightly in front of your other leg and relax into this stance. Give your arms something to do that bends them at the elbow, like holding your bouquet or placing your hand on the groom‚Äôs chest.

 

  • Tilt your head sideways ever-so-slightly while pushing your chin out and down SLIGHTLY. This eliminates double chins and gives your face a flattering angle.

 

  • Don‚Äôt smile ALL the time, you will end up with a frozen, artificial expression and your face will start shaking after about half an hour of doing this, trust me, it has happened to me. Some of the most beautiful, dramatic, and emotive photographs are of peaceful, relaxed brides. Part your lips very slightly or for a natural smile, think of your last romantic date with your beloved.

 

  • And the most important thing: RELAX, you are at your most beautiful and this is a fun experience! If you feel stressed or nervous, try this: close your eyes, and take a deep breath by inhaling while counting to three, and exhaling for six counts. I call this, smelling the roses, and blowing out the candles. Repeat for as long as necessary. It calms you nerves and leaves you feeling reenergized.

Practice these posing tips in front of the mirror several times. On your wedding day you may not remember this article, but standing and smiling for the camera will be more familiar if you have practiced. I offer lots of guidance and direction during a photo shoot, and I tailor and stylize the shots specifically for the couple I am working with, so no two images are the same, but knowing these basic tips will help you feel more confident while being photographed.  

Next week’s article will focus on different photography styles and how to choose a wedding photographer. I will also be having several featured guest bloggers about other aspects of planning your wedding. Stay tuned!

Feel free to share this article with your friends and family, or on Facebook.

To view our work please visit our weddings website, or click here for our portrait site.

Today I went on a little expedition with one of my 2011 brides to visit her venue: Meadowlark Gardens in Griffin, GA. The place is beautiful! Even with all the naked trees and ice covering the walkways I can just see how gorgeous this¬†venue will be in the spring and I can’t wait!

This is an awesome group of girls. Ever since I booked this wedding last year Meagan and her family have been so welcoming and sweet, I feel like I’m part¬†of the family. I’m thrilled that I will be shooting this wedding and can’t wait to share!

From today:

Yesterday, someone very close to me called to tell me they had received a check for just enough to pay an outstanding debt that was about to go to collection and they had been stressing about. This is someone who has gone through a rough time, and doesn’t have the strongest faith. This friend’s words to me were: “He truly gives you exactly what you need when you need it. It’s incredible, He never abandons us and is always bailing us out.” :)

This incredible Source that we call God, our source of love, faith, hope, and everything else good, is limitless in His generosity. Thousands of years ago tomorrow, we received the greatest gift of all from His greatness, an extraordinary Son to bring us closer to Him and remind us of that goodness that still prevails in our hearts, of the awesomeness we are capable of, and the bountiful universe we live in, one of unlimited resources. A light to remind us of where we come from, what we are part of, and where we are going.

Tomorrow morning when my kids’ eyes sparkle as they open their presents I will smile and my heart will jump with joy. This is the best time of the year… a season of giving, a celebration of generosity, of the plentiful world we live in. Although we give more love, give more food, give time, and give presents, the more we give, the fuller our cup is, we never run out. And for that gift, I thank you Lord.

Cheers to giving!