Seattle Summer Farm Wedding

wedding photography

Bonney and David are a fun couple from Tacoma. I was excited to use their wedding as an excuse to take a vacation to Seattle! I had fun exploring Mount Rainier and downtown, and I shot their wedding in Tacoma. Fun fact, it’s where 10 Things I Hate About You was filmed!

The morning started off really relaxed as she got ready in one of the rooms of the church, which was historic and absolutely stunning. I love this candid I captured of her putting on her jewelry before the dress, which was her mother’s wedding dress.

Once she had her dress on, it was time to do the first look! They decided to do it in between the columns of the church, which created such a timeless look. I love the layers of her dress and how cute they look together.

This was one of my favorite parts. The planner helped them go up the steps of the church to the balcony so I could snap a few shots. It reminds me of Romeo and Juliet, so elegant and timeless.

This is when the day started speeding up. We had to shoot the wedding party photos, the details, and then the ceremony! I loved the pop of color in her flowers and how adorable the flower girls looked.

The ceremony went seamlessly and then it was time to head to their friend’s farm for the stunning reception. They made their getaway in a vintage red car, which was super cute and added to the elegant theme of the wedding.

Growing up as a farm girl, I love when I get to shoot farm or outdoor weddings. This one was no exception, and I loved the rustic feel with flowers picked from the garden and wooden logs placed as decor.

My favorite part of the night is by far when we got to go into a field around sunset and do this balloon portrait shoot! Their fun loving personality really shone through during this part, and we had a blast taking photos with their dogs.

Her dogs! Too cute, right?

I pulled Bonney aside to snap a few solo shots of her, because her dress was too stunning not to. I especially loved the added touch of flowers in her hair. The lighting was absolutely perfect.

Fairy lights strung around added to the mood of the reception as the sun set. We did one last shoot of the two of them before I left them to enjoy dancing and drinks. They started a bonfire for everyone to circle around, and it made for the best silhouette shots. Overall it was a wonderful wedding in Seattle and I had a blast shooting it. I can’t wait until I get to go back and shoot another!

If you like these photos, make sure to have a look at my website and follow me on Instagram! Feel free to drop me an email at gdeimz@gmail.com for any shoot requests, questions, or just to chat! If you’re in the NYC area, let’s grab coffee and talk lenses and shoot locations 🙂

Pixinity NYC Pop Up Photoshoot

Inspiration

It’s not a regular pop-up shop where you snap a photo for The Gram and leave. This is an entire art installation with a heartfelt meaning. The artist, Tianyu Qiu, decided to make his own pop up and partner with Autism Speaks. His sister was diagnosed with autism, and they use computers and iconographic symbols to communicate over verbal communication. He wanted to create a world where anyone could come interact with the art in an accessible way. I loved that concept, so I stopped by this week to check out Pixinity!

It starts out with a wall of shades of pink–my favorite. They told us that pink is the symbol for hope, so there’s a thread of pink throughout the entire show.

Then we moved on to the hallway of neon that transported us out of 2019 and into the digital, pixelated world full of pixelated people, food, and cities!

The blue room is filled with foam pixels for you to play around with and emojis with different expressions in pixel form. It kind of feels like you’re walking around a live version of Mario Bros, which was awesome.

I won’t give all the surprises away, but let’s just say there are some blacklight rooms that are very trippy and an infinity mirror you could stare at all day long (we did). What I loved about this pop-up is that it wasn’t just about photos. You could tell the artist spent a lot of time thinking of ways to make it interactive and interesting for the audience, and created a safe space where everyone was free to play in their own way.

This room, unsurprisingly, was my favorite. It was all about sending a love letter and there were pink paper airplanes flying around the room and this pixelated heart with wings. Not to mention the massive pink ballpit. This always brings out my inner child, and I had fun swimming around in a pixelated pink ocean!

The whole experience is filled with vibrant colors that correspond to different themes in the rooms. Here are a few other favorite shots, including one I took of the creator of the project, Tianyu. We had fun playing for a few hours and letting our inner child run around!

The Pink Ballpit!

This was honestly my favorite part of the entire shoot. It was just so pink. Aka my favorite. If you haven’t gone yet, definitely check Pixinity out this fall before it’s gone. I was really hyped to support a pop-up that had a deeper meaning and was partnering for an awesome cause.

If you like these photos, make sure to have a look at my website and follow me on Instagram! Feel free to drop me an email at gdeimz@gmail.com for any shoot requests, questions, or just to chat! If you’re in the NYC area, let’s grab coffee and talk lenses and shoot locations 🙂

Plaza Hotel NYC Engagement Photoshoot

Inspiration

Jersey and Luis are the most adorable couple. They’re born and raised New Yorkers who run a wellness Instagram together where they coach others and help people on their fitness journey. They’re also foodies who love cooking elaborate dishes together in their Upper East Side Apartment.

I asked them if they’d want to do a quick couple shoot near The Plaza Hotel and Central Park, and it just so happened that the day we shot together was their four year wedding anniversary! It was meant to be. From the second we met, they were all laughs, high energy, and so sweet. You could tell from their infectious smiles that they’re best friends and have so much fun together.

I tried a variety of poses and angles with them on this shoot. Walking together, sitting, crossing the street, facing each other and holding hands are all great options for couple photos. In some shots, like with the walking and crossing the street, I like to add a bit of movement, so I had Jersey move her skirt so it flowed a little bit.

The Pulitzer Fountain and trees made a great backdrop and bokeh, and for some of the shots I also tried a technique where I laid on the ground and angled up so The Plaza was directly behind them. As always, we had the best time shooting and I can’t wait to collaborate more with them. We’re planning a fitness shoot for them soon, so keep an eye out for that.

What are your favorite poses for engagement shoots? Also, are there any places in NYC that I just have to shoot at?! Drop a comment below with your thoughts and tell me what you think! And check out my favorites from our shoot at The Plaza below:

If you like these photos, make sure to have a look at my website and follow me on Instagram! Feel free to drop me an email at gdeimz@gmail.com for any shoot requests, questions, or just to chat! If you’re in the NYC area, let’s grab coffee and talk lenses and shoot locations 🙂

The Color Factory NYC Photoshoot

Inspiration, photography tips

My friend Cameisha modeled for The Color Factory for their opening last year, so she asked me if I wanted to go back and take some fun fashion shots! I knew that the pop up was filled with dozens of colorfully painted rooms with awesome activities, so I was super excited to explore with her and shoot some photos.

One of the first rooms we walked in was bright ombre red and orange. There are all these balloons that are blowing around with words and phrases on them (my favorite was “a lot of pizza”). We had fun trying to make the balloons stay still long enough for a quick photo.

Another cool thing about The Color Factory is that all the walls have stripes, rainbows, and colors galore! Literally every hallway, door, room, and corner are covered with colors, murals, and art pieces. It makes the entire experience a prime spot for all photo taking. Of course we had to do a quick outfit change with her fun sequin pants to match the vibrant walls.

My personal favorite room is the Disco room! It’s covered in sequins, a dance floor, neon, and is blasting with music. You feel like you’re in a nightclub of color. Cameisha’s black feather coat and neon pink bodysuit made for the perfect combination.

We went a little crazy and even had Cameisha lay on the disco lit floor for a few shots. People did stare, just a little bit. That’s the only downside of shooting in a public place–you have to be okay causing a bit of a scene. Fashion shoots in public are not for the faint of heart!

The last room is definitely the best–a massive blue ball pit filled with literally thousands of balls to jump in, play with, and of course, take photos with. To get this shot, I had to dive in with her so I could shoot from a little bit of an overhead angle. I highly recommend flash for these types of pictures, because lighting was a little dark. The last thing is to be patient, because there were a lot of people also playing in the ball pit, and the last thing you want in a fashion shot is random strangers in the background.

Overall, we had a blast, and I highly recommend you check out The Color Factory, or maybe The Pint Shop, or the newest pop-up in NYC, Pixinity. Pop-ups are a such a fun way to take unique photos and get creative!

If you like these photos, make sure to have a look at my website and follow me on Instagram! Feel free to drop me an email at gdeimz@gmail.com for any shoot requests, questions, or just to chat! If you’re in the NYC area, let’s grab coffee and talk lenses and shoot locations 🙂

Best Graffiti Walls in NYC to Photograph

Inspiration, photography tips

When my cousin asked me if I’d shoot some fun engagement photos for her and her fiancee, I was immediately excited. They’re a super fun couple who hate the traditional cheesy engagement shots, so I knew our shoot would be fun and totally out of the box–something I’m always down to try with photography.

We immediately started scouring Instagram for the best spots in NYC with the coolest graffiti. I’d walked by a lot of cool spots in passing, but I had never really put together a definitive list on the best spots to keep track of. So, after we ran around shooting all day–and I do mean the entire day–we had tons of good spots that I would recommend for you guys to try if you’re looking for good shooting spots. Here they are:

  1. Freeman Alley

This spot was perfect for them because they don’t love having to take pictures while an audience of people watches. Freeman Alley is pretty hard to find if you don’t know that it’s there, so there’s never a ton of people hanging around, which makes pictures easier. The graffiti in the alley is always changing, but theres a diverse selection to choose from. Also, while you’re there, grabbing a bite at Freeman’s is never a bad idea!

2. Houston Bowery Mural

This is one of the more known spots downtown, but that doesn’t make it any less photogenic! The mural gets changed every few months, so there’s always something new to shoot with. Queen Andrea is the most recent artists selected to decorate the wall, and it’s filled with vibrant colors and a massive “Believe” script over the top. It’s massive, so you’ll have plenty of room to get your shots for The ‘Gram. Just be careful though, because it’s right next to the busy street.

3. NOMO SOHO Graffiti Wall

We saw this wall in our inspiration pics, but didn’t know exactly where it was, so it was a huge surprise as we were strolling down Crosby Street and came across this piece and the ivy archway. It’s definitely a great spot for pictures, and the pastel tones on the brick come across beautifully in camera. Just note that this is an entrance to a hotel, so people will probably be walking back and forth, but don’t let that stop you from getting your shot!

4. Dumbo Love Wall

I told you we went everywhere–we even made it to Brooklyn before the sun set! If you’ve walked around NYC, chances are you’ve probably seen some heart murals. Those belong to JGoldcrown, a British graffiti artist based in NY and LA. We shot at the Dumbo one, but he has murals up in Freeman Alley, Mott Street, St. Marks, and Williamsburg. This is such an iconic NYC graffiti stop, and I think it’s a must for your graffiti photo list.

5. Wandering!

My last tip for you: wander around. Here’s just a few other places we went that ended up having super cool or cute graffiti. The coolest part about NYC is that it’s constantly changing, and a piece you love might be replaced next week with a totally new one. Definitely pick out your spots, but make sure you plan in some time to wander around and see what you can find in the city. If you do happen to stumble onto some great spots, let me know and I’ll add them to the list!

Special thanks to A and Ty for such a fun day in NYC and trusting me with their pictures. And if you like these, make sure to have a look at my website and follow me on Instagram! Feel free to drop me an email at gdeimz@gmail.com for any shoot requests, questions, or just to chat! If you’re in the NYC area, let’s grab coffee and talk lenses and shoot locations 🙂

UES. Ice Cream Photoshoot

Inspiration

One of my favorite things to do in NYC is bring my camera to places that have cute backdrops and cause a huge scene doing a mini photoshoot in a public place with lots of people staring at us.

Okay, I’m joking, but seriously, sometimes restaurants, graffiti walls, and NYC popups are too cute to just snap a pic with my iPhone. So I get all dressed up, trudge to the location in heels, bring my wide lens and a flash, and just have a full-on photoshoot wherever we are. Pro tip: You can’t be embarrassed by this in NYC. Everyone is doing mini photoshoots for The Gram, so I just go with it and act like it’s perfectly natural to be staging a shoot in whatever public place we’re at that day.

A few faves: The Pint Shop. It’s a pink paradise with larger than life pints of ice cream and sprinkles. The Gucci photo pop up. It’s a room filled with hundreds of old photographs and Polaroids. And most recently, UES. ice cream shop, well, in the Upper East Side. This place has a twist, though. You have to say a codeword to the shop manager, and suddenly the wall of hundreds of pints of ice cream opens to reveal a secret door that leads you into a hidden speakeasy in the back!

WHAT! Pretty sweet, huh?! When my friend told me about it, I was excited to go and check it out, but I knew that I wanted a cute photo in front of that adorable ice cream wall, so we rounded up a few girlfriends and met outside the shop to get our ice cream and drink on.

When we got there, we realized that the shop was tiny, and only about 4-5 people can fit in there at a time. It was a tight squeeze, but we managed to get a cute waffle cone with sprinkles and snap some fun shots (with strangers onlooking, but you can’t be bothered by that in NYC) before saying the secret phrase: “I’d like to volunteer for your storage room.”

Then suddenly, an attendant whisked us to the back, revealing the speakeasy! We spent the rest of the evening in ice cream bliss, enjoying our sweets, ice cream flavored drinks, and the excitement of the hidden secrecy of the place. If you’re in NYC, it’s definitely worth a visit for the delicious ice cream and drinks in the back.

Check out some of the photos we took below:

Brooklyn Bridge Engagement Sunset Shoot

photography tips

Just as I had written a post last week about my Brooklyn Bridge shoot, a couple contacted me wanting to do an engagement shoot of sorts on the bridge at sunset! They had lived in NYC for a few years but moved to Boston for medical school, and wanted to come back to do a shoot before they got married. I was super hyped to help them capture this moment, so I said of course!

I was excited to shoot again on the bridge, but this time I shot on the BK side, so the shots had a little bit different feel with the Manhattan skyline in the background. I’ve decided that either side works perfectly, and it just depends what time of day you’re shooting to which side you might want to shoot from.

Evening was the only time that worked for them, and I knew that would be a little tricky with all the people, but we managed to still get some adorable shots even with all the tourists walking the bridge! If you have the time (and don’t mind getting up at dawn) then I’d definitely say go for sunrise or early morning shots. The benefit to this is that hardly anyone will be on the bridge, so the background will look a little cleaner.

We ended up having a few breaks of people and I had enough time to snap some shots without anyone in the background, which was lucky because there were hundreds of people crossing the bridge! But sometimes you have to be crafty with your angles and just make it work.

The other tip I’d say is that Ela was wearing heels and I had forgotten that it’s a pretty long trek to get to the archway of the bridge (at least a 10-15 minute walk on the BK side) so definitely bring a change of shoes if you’re planning on wearing heels or something that’s not too comfortable for a mini hike. Besides that, the weather was perfect and we had a great time shooting!

You can check out my favorite photos from the shoot below:

If you like these, make sure to have a look at my website and follow me on Instagram! Feel free to drop me an email at gdeimz@gmail.com for any shoot requests, questions, or just to chat! If you’re in the NYC area, let’s grab coffee and talk lenses and shoot locations 🙂

Brooklyn Bridge Sunrise Wedding Shoot

wedding photography

I met my good friend Stanley when I first moved to NYC. He’s the sweetest guy in the entire world, and his wife is even more adorable! Stanley and I are both photographers, and through some of the wedding shoots we did together, he told me that he didn’t hire a professional photographer for his wedding!

As a photographer, I was like, “Dude, you’re crazy!” A photographer not getting high quality pictures at his own wedding?! I knew we had to remedy this. So when we got the opportunity to shoot some new Hayley Paige dresses in NYC, I thought, THIS IS IT!

Dress by Hayley Paige

I pretty much insisted (and wouldn’t take no for an option) that he and his lovely wife model the looks, and get some much needed gorgeous wedding photos. We decided to shoot on the Brooklyn Bridge at sunrise. It was a substantial undertaking, because we knew that to be *at* the BKB by 5am, we’d have to get ready, do makeup, etc. wayyy before that.

We ended up meeting around 3am to start the project (Stanley was late per usual). There were some very sleepy eyes and tired brains involved. But everything was worth it once we got to the bridge. There was nobody on the bridge, besides a few cyclists here and there. It was the perfect setting, and the sun was just about to rise.

Sunrise on the Brooklyn Bridge

And they turned out to be the MOST gorgeous photos I’ve ever taken there. Stanley and his wife looked absolutely stunning, and the backdrop of the city was even better than I could have hoped for. They were so natural together, and the intricate detail of the dress matched perfectly.

The second we started shooting, we knew that waking up in the middle of the night had totally been worth it for the shots. We shot everything in about 45 minutes, and just like that, the sun had risen and people started to wake up. Tourists began walking on the bridge, and we headed home for a nice nap.

To this day, they are still some of my all-time wedding photos I’ve taken EVER. Because, look at how adorable they are! When I do styled shoots, I almost always like to use real couples as the models, because you can tell how authentic their love is in the shot.

Tips For Shooting On The Brooklyn Bridge: Go for sunrise. Hardly anyone will be there, which will mean you can grab the perfect shot, and get the gorgeous golden hour tones. Walk over from the Manhattan side, I’ve found that the lighting is better this way.

Check out the rest of my favorites from the shoot:

Should You Credit Your Photographer?

Uncategorized

Matt Healy of the popular British rock band The 1975 has sparked a huge debate online this week with an Instagram post and a question. He posted a photo of himself at a concert, taken by music photographer Robert Gallardo, and asked his followers how they felt about crediting your photographer. Healy stated that since he personally knew the photographer, he felt the need to credit him for his image, but that in general he thought it was not necessary for the artist to credit the photographer if it was an image of himself. You can read the full text of his comment below.

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There were thousands of comments from artists, musicians, and fans chiming in on their opinions. An overwhelming number of people responded in favor of crediting the photographer, due to the fact that it’s an original artwork that they have created and therefore should be credited as such. Photographer Ashly Nicole compared the scenario to other mediums and forms to make her point, saying, “You had people share your art and say it was created by you, and it should be the same for a photographer or even an illustrator. Just because it’s not the same medium as your art, doesn’t make it not art nor extinguish the hard work put into the art. Give credit no matter the medium,”

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As a photographer myself watching this unfold, I was pretty shocked. I know how it feels to put in a lot of time and effort for a photoshoot only for it to be posted by a media outlet or someone online without proper credit. For someone with such a big platform and voice in the industry, it’s disheartening to see Healy take that stance. He might not realize it, but he has the power to impact the entire career of a photographer by posting one photo that they have taken.

In this social media age, your work being shown by accounts with millions of followers holds a lot of value. When someone like Matt Healy posts your photo, the digital currency of your work increases. By not tagging the photographer, you’re effectively robbing them of potential opportunities, future jobs, and exposure. To me, that’s stealing.

No matter the medium, when people put in hard work, they deserve to be credited. There’s a reason that there are credits at the end of a movie and the back of a magazine. It’s to acknowledge when someone has participated in a production. The same goes for photographers, and makeup artists, and designers, and painters. I’m a photographer, so I might be biased, but I think credit should always be given.

Healy updated his post later, stating that he “lost the debate” and tagging Robert Gallardo in the post. What are your thoughts? Comment below what you would have done, or how you think this impacts the industry standards of crediting photographers.

Having a Career You Love

Inspiration

My parents wanted me to have a practical career. Something stable, with normal business hours and a steady salary. And then when I was twelve, my mom handed me a camera to take to a concert, and that concept went promptly out the window. Luckily for me, throughout high school and college, my parents realized that my passion for image making wasn’t going anywhere, and they were not only supportive but insanely helpful in making sure I had opportunities to develop and cultivate my craft. They helped me get my first photography internship, and agreed that I should study photography in college. 

Fast forward five years and I’m living the dream in Manhattan. And by “living the dream” I mean I work three part time photography jobs, often work nights and weekends, and haven’t slept since February. But guess what? I love it. I can’t imagine doing anything else. It’s the most rewarding career I could have imagined for myself.

I’ll be honest: having a career you love is hard. You’re 100% invested. You live and breathe it every day. You wake up thinking about it and answer those last few emails before bed at the end of the day. It’s not going to be the easy route, because the hustle is just as important as the passion. That whole “Get a job you love and you won’t work a day in your life” phrase is quite honestly garbage. I have to work hard day in and day out to further my career, and all the weight and responsibility of that is solely on my shoulders. It’s intimidating, but that makes it even more rewarding when there are successes. 

If you are ready for a challenge, if you’re ready to get to work, if the unpredictability excites you, then take the leap and go for it. Lately my office has been in a Chicago airport, the Rocky Mountains, a coffeeshop in Manhattan, a farm in Missouri, and who knows where else in the world I might be. There’s not a lot of stability, and there are no guarantees, but it’s what I love. It takes a lot of work and a lot more self discipline, but the challenge is part of the excitement. So get out there and make that dream a reality. I promise it will be worth it.