Chelsea | Portraits

Chelsea turns 24 this coming week. It's hard to believe we've celebrated 6 birthdays together!! Chelsea is so much fun in front of the camera and her eyes are killer. Chels is one of those friends that graciously allowed me to constantly photograph her when I was just starting out & my work was less than impressive. I'm so thankful for her constant encouragement and sweet spirit. 

Thaleigha | Portraits

Thaleigha came back to Lynchburg this weekend for a visit. She'll tell you she loves DC, but I know she misses her old stomping grounds. We spent Saturday exploring some new places with a new friend, brunching and eating birthday cake. I don't know about you, but that's pretty much the perfect Saturday. 

Brian & Haley | Shooting Manual

Brian & Haley were the winners of an Instagram contest I posted a few weeks ago. We had originally scheduled their session for late afternoon because I love shooting into sunset, but we had to reschedule to early afternoon. The thing about early afternoon is, the sun is at its highest so there are tons of shadows and it's very harsh lighting. Thanks to manual, I was able to make the sun work for me! 

I tend to shoot underexposed, this lets me bring everything up while editing. Tip: It's easier to brighten a photo while editing than it is to darken it. I keep my ISO lower and my shutter speed higher, while almost always keeping my f stop at 1.4 because I love a pretty bokeh (the blur in the background). The higher your ISO, the grainier your photos. This lesson was hard learned for me personally - I loved seeing bright images in the camera because it was easier to see what the final product would look like. This made my editing process a lot harder. Shooting underexposed has allowed me to achieve the bright and airy look I always wanted. Manual can be scary and it's definitely an adjustment, but it's so worth it!! I encourage you to play around with manual, see what works best for you as a photographer.

Now let's talk about Brian and Haley - aren't they just the cutest! Brian and Haley's chemistry is every photographer's dream. They were natural with each other which made my job so easy. I can't help but look at these photos and smile!