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.

Bride and groom with their three leg doggie ring bearer  - 21 Main Events at North Beach

Wedding at 21 Main Events with a cute dog ring-bearer and unusual sunset

21 Main Events at North Beach is becoming one of my frequented wedding venues for photography. It’s a great combination of a sheltered courtyard area that keeps the guests out of the sun and wind. As well as a beautiful nearby gazebo and beach area. My wife Lizeth was assisting me as a second photographer at this wedding. She went up with the groomsmen to their suite above the main restaurant and got some great shots of them out on the balcony. I usually like to stay with the bride myself and take the pictures of all her details. Such …

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Spring wedding at Wachesaw Plantation with a large bridal party, fun dancing, portraits under the hanging lights and sparkler exit

Annika and Ronnie were one of the many couples in Myrtle Beach that had to move their wedding from its original date because of Covid-19. They even had to change from their original venue to Wachesaw Plantation. Wachesaw Plantation is located a little south of Myrtle Beach is the Murrells Inlet area. This venue change ended up being for the best. The Kimbels in Wachesaw Plantation is one of the best venues in Myrtle Beach for photography. Sunlight filtering through the moss on the bank of the Waccamaw River is one of my favorite backgrounds for pictures. I started out …

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Real estate photography and 360 walkthrough for a classic house in Florence, SC

I’m still pursuing my expansion into doing some real estate photography. I find it fun and relaxing, it’s similar to doing the detail shots and venue pictures at a wedding, which I always enjoy. My main problem is that I’m very particular and take too many pictures. It ends up taking me too much time for the typical prices people are willing to pay for real estate photography. I’m going to have to learn to be faster and more efficient at taking and post processing the pictures. This is the same thing I had to learn for weddings and family …

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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 …

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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 …

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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 …

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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 …

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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 …

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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 …

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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 …

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