Ryan Smith Photography's Blog

Welcome to my blog. Here you will find thousands of pictures from featured wedding, family, engagement, bridal, and senior portrait photography sessions. If you are undecided on a wedding venue, view some of my favorite weddings venues here.

First look with bride putting her hands around the groom's eyes - Folly Beach - Charleston

Intimate wedding with family at the Tides in Folly Beach, Charleston

Nicole and Adam found me through WeddingWire, back before we knew anything about Covid-19. They were having a small wedding ceremony on the beach, with just a few family and friends, on September 10th of 2020. This actually worked out perfectly, since most weddings in 2020 ended up being scaled back from the original plans. They were having a separate larger reception later on in NC. They only had me there to take pictures up until dinner time. I was actually glad to not have to stay late since I had another wedding in Charleston the very next day. This …

Read post and view pictures Intimate wedding with family at the Tides in Folly Beach, Charleston

Wedding in downtown Charleston with a reception at the Daniel Island Club

Since it’s my slow time of the year, I’ve been doing some updates to my website. Especially for some of my past weddings in the Charleston area. This was a beautiful wedding from back in 2013 that needed an updated blog post. I added in some ceremony pictures that were missing and did some extra adjustments as well. I was looking at the photo metadata to see what equipment I used back then, these were all taken with a Nikon D3 and Nikon D800. I’m still using the same Nikon 85mm f1.4 lens I used back then. So the main …

Read post and view pictures Wedding in downtown Charleston with a reception at the Daniel Island Club

Rainy wedding day at the Grand Dunes Resort Golf Club in Myrtle Beach

Like many recent couples, Mary and Inman had to make some last minute changes to their wedding plans because of Covid-19. The were originally supposed to have a big ceremony back in the bride’s home country of Venezuela. This ended up not being possible, with all the current travel restrictions. In just a few weeks time, they planned a whole new wedding in Myrtle Beach! They contacted me just a couple of weeks before the wedding date. Since their date was a Friday in February, I was available and happy to do it. Wedding at the Ocean Drive Church in …

Read post and view pictures Rainy wedding day at the Grand Dunes Resort Golf Club in Myrtle Beach

Host an incredibly fast WordPress website using WordOps on AWS Lightsail CDN

This is a really different post from my usual blogging about my photography. I actually did some web development long before I started my photography business, and it really helped me out when I started my business back in 2008. When I built my first site, I just used static html pages and had a separate blog running on WordPress. A number of years later, I switched my entire site to WordPress. With some page caching techniques, WordPress can be just as fast as static web pages. While you can find very cheap web hosting, for example around $5 a …

Read post and view pictures Host an incredibly fast WordPress website using WordOps on AWS Lightsail CDN

A great start to 2021 with maternity portraits at Caledonia Golf & Fish Club

Thinking back on 13 years of photography in Myrtle Beach It’s hard to believe it’s 2021 already. I’m entering into my 13th year as a full time photographer in the Myrtle Beach area. It doesn’t seem like that long ago, I was taking my first family beach pictures with a Nikon D80 and 50mm f1.8 lens. I still had a lot to learn at that time, but I always had a good eye for light and I was good with people so I got a lot of great shots. Thinking back to the most important knowledge I had before I …

Read post and view pictures A great start to 2021 with maternity portraits at Caledonia Golf & Fish Club

How to do an unforgettable surprise marriage proposal in Myrtle Beach

I photograph a number of surprise marriage proposals each year in the Myrtle Beach area, and so far everyone has said yes to the proposal! From taking pictures in the pouring rain to having the couple’s kids run out after to congratulate them, I’ve captured some unforgettable memories in 2020. I get a lot of emails asking for help in setting this up, so I thought I would make a blog post with my usual recommendations, and how I photograph the proposal and engagement pictures after. At the end of the post are about 50 pictures from a recent beautiful …

Read post and view pictures How to do an unforgettable surprise marriage proposal in Myrtle Beach

Sunset maternity portraits in Myrtle Beach

Now that things are slowing down, I have some time to go back and highlight some of my favorite photography sessions from 2020. This maternity portrait session was in September at the Huntington Beach State Park. This state park is about 25 minutes south of the Myrtle Beach city limits. I recommend making the trip because it’s an especially beautiful location. I had a lot of fun with this couple, they were originally from my wife’s home country of Colombia. We got some really beautiful maternity portraits before the sunset that evening. We started out doing some traditional portraits of …

Read post and view pictures Sunset maternity portraits in Myrtle Beach

2020 romance in Myrtle Beach – Favorite engagement pictures of the year

Covid-19 has messed up a lot of plans this year. But it didn’t stop many determined couples from getting engaged in Myrtle Beach during 2020. As things get busy during the summer, I don’t have as much time for posting to my blog. So I thought I would make a quick, end of the year, blog post highlighting a number of different Myrtle Beach area engagement sessions. You can also check out a couple of pre-lockdown engagement session from last Spring here. I had a variety of different, already engaged couples, coming to the Myrtle Beach area for pictures. As …

Read post and view pictures 2020 romance in Myrtle Beach – Favorite engagement pictures of the year

Beautiful riverfront wedding at the Kimbels in Wachesaw Plantation

It’s great to finish out the 2020 season with some amazing weddings. Even though the weddings have been a little smaller this year because of Covid, I’ve still had some of my favorites ever. The Kimbels restaurant in Wachesaw Plantation is one of the most beautiful locations in the Myrtle Beach area. Especially if you are looking for trees and moss instead of the beach. The Kimbels ceremony location, overlooking the Waccamaw River, is a beautiful spot for portraits at sunset. There is also a picturesque oak allee surrounded by large moss covered live oak trees on either side. When …

Read post and view pictures Beautiful riverfront wedding at the Kimbels in Wachesaw Plantation

Sunset ceremony facing the clubhouse at Pine Lakes Country Club

Intimate Beach House wedding Shannon and Lawrence had a lot of changes to their wedding schedule this year because of Covid-19. I first did bridal portraits for Shannon at Pine Lakes Country Club, back in February, before we had any idea how difficult things would get. You can check them out on my blog here. Their wedding at Pine Lakes was supposed to take place back in April, of course this is when all the Covid social distancing restrictions were at their strictest. They decided to go ahead and get married with a very private beach house ceremony. I actually …

Read post and view pictures Sunset ceremony facing the clubhouse at Pine Lakes Country Club


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