Engagement portraits at Litchfield Plantation in Pawleys Island

It’s been a several years since I did a photography session at Litchfield Plantation in Pawleys Island. My last wedding back in 2011 at Litchfield Plantation was really beautiful with the bride arriving on a horse-drawn carriage. I was told they were no longer booking events and that they were turning the area into a housing development, but I guess that decision was changed. The recently engaged couple featured in this post had family that owned a home inside Litchfield Plantation, so we were able to do the engagement pictures wherever we liked. I notice on their website that anyone can pay …

Read post and view pictures Engagement portraits at Litchfield Plantation in Pawleys Island

Conway River Walk engagement pictures with the flooded Waccamaw River

We knew going into these engagement pictures that the Conway River Walk was completely flooded and inaccessible because of hurricane Matthew. We knew going into these engagement pictures that the Conway River Walk was completely flooded and inaccessible because of hurricane Matthew. it was even a foot and a half higher than the record flooding we had last year. This couple really wanted to do pictures in Conway, so we had to find some other locations besides the River Walk to do the portraits. They suggested doing pictures on Oak Street, I wasn’t really familiar with that area but I …

Read post and view pictures Conway River Walk engagement pictures with the flooded Waccamaw River

Having fun with long exposure, flash, steel wool and getting started with the Myrtle Beach season

With the beautiful spring weather in Myrtle Beach, it’s the time of the year my photography business starts really picking up. Of course that also means lots of pollen and traffic at the beach, but you have to take the good with the bad. I thought I would do a quick blog post highlighting my first spring engagement session and some long exposure light painting fun I had this winter. My photography friend Hannah Ruth and I wanted to experiment with some long exposure light painting shots using wedding sparklers. Painting with the light from sparklers can be as simple as putting your camera …

Read post and view pictures Having fun with long exposure, flash, steel wool and getting started with the Myrtle Beach season

Engagement pictures at the Myrtle Beach State Park after the flooding

I’m sure everyone has heard about the severe flooding we had in SC about a month ago.  Myrtle Beach wasn’t hit as hard as some areas, but we still had flooding in many locations. You might have heard me complain that in the Myrtle Beach state park they are extremely particular about photographers getting anywhere near the dunes.  I guess they don’t have to worry about it anymore because the front slope of many of the dunes are completely gone.  The dunes are now just cliffs with the roots of sea oats sticking out of the sides.  The water must have come …

Read post and view pictures Engagement pictures at the Myrtle Beach State Park after the flooding

Surprise engagement proposal with the whole family at the Myrtle Beach State Park

I’ve been doing a lot of these surprise marriage proposals recently. I think it’s because I’ve blogged about it a number of times and clients must be seeing my posts. Whatever the reason I always really enjoy doing these so I hope I keep getting more. I believe this engagement proposal really was a surprise, she was under the impression we were just doing couple portraits of the whole family.  I took some pictures of the 5 different couples including parents and grandparents up by the oak trees, then some down by the dunes. When it was the about to be engaged couple’s turn …

Read post and view pictures Surprise engagement proposal with the whole family at the Myrtle Beach State Park

Fun engagement pictures in Garden City on a cold afternoon and Storyboard 3

I haven’t had a chance to blog about engagement portraits in a while. Things are getting slow so I thought I would post some pictures from this recent cold weather engagement session down at the southern tip of Garden City Beach. I’ve done many photo sessions down in Garden City, but this one was unusual because they live in a private neighborhood that I normally can’t photograph in. The southern end of Garden City is very pretty, it’s a short walk from the beach to the board walks that go out and over the marsh. It’s not very often I get to shoot …

Read post and view pictures Fun engagement pictures in Garden City on a cold afternoon and Storyboard 3

Cold and windy day for engagement pictures at the Myrtle Beach State Park

There are always a couple of winter months where no one is looking to have portraits done outdoors or on the beach. During those months I always have some things to do like wedding album layouts and catching up with clients about orders from the previous year, but it’s nice to be getting busy taking fresh pictures again. I seem to be getting an early start this year with not only some engagement sessions but even a wedding this coming weekend.

The engagement session I’m highlighting this time was for a couple with an upcoming wedding I’m photographing this summer. It was a very cold and windy day at the Myrtle Beach State Park. I guess because the ocean temperature is so low right now, it seemed much colder on the beach then it did a little bit inland. Thankfully I brought along a sweatshirt, but I was still really cold even with that on. As cold as I was I felt really bad for the couple because they were just freezing in what they were wearing, I felt a little guilty in my sweatshirt. They wanted to go for it anyway, and I think we managed to get some really good pictures even with the wind and cold. In fact, the sky had an unusual look that day that I think gave some nice interest to the pictures, and we were the only ones on the beach which was nice. I guess a girl knows she has a pretty good guy if he will stay in a good mood through the cold and even three different outfit changes :) It makes me look forward to the wedding knowing a couple is easy going and will make the best of things.

I hope you enjoy the pictures below, please let me know if you do by liking or sharing the pictures, as well as commenting below.

Read post and view pictures Cold and windy day for engagement pictures at the Myrtle Beach State Park

Two engagement photography sessions at the Conway River Walk, one with a Poodle

Penny Smith

I really like during this slower time of the year to do engagement sessions for my upcoming weddings.  I had two sets of weddings clients recently that wanted to do engagement pictures at the Conway River Walk, so I decided I would just combine pictures from both their sessions into one post.  The first set below I’m a little partial too because they had a poodle that looks almost just like my dog Penny.  You can check out her Facebook page here, she needs some more friends. Their poodle was a little nervous especially up on the railroad track, just like my dog would be with the tail tucked down tight.  The very last picture in the first set below was cute. He was trying to be good and sit while we did pictures, but he was so happy when they finally called him over.  I thought both the engagement sessions turned out very nice, the Conway River walk is a great spot this time of the year.  I had a little trouble with getting the guys to smile, but I understand because I can’t smile for pictures myself.

The two engagement photography sessions below can give you an idea of the difference between a sunny and a cloudy day.  They both have a different look, but I can’t say one is better than the other.  I like the soft look of a cloudy day, especially in a black and white. Of course, when you can get the sunset filtering through a tree in the background, it is always great as well.  I don’t get to choose if it’s going to be cloudy or not, so I just had to learn to make it look good either way.  I’d say if you are a beginning photographer try for a cloudy day, it’s a lot easier to get an acceptable picture, I see a lot of photographers make a mess of things with the sun.  I hope you enjoy the engagement pictures from the Conway River Walk below, let me know in the comments box if you do.

Read post and view pictures Two engagement photography sessions at the Conway River Walk, one with a Poodle

Surprise engagement proposal at Broadway at the Beach in Myrtle Beach

This was another surprise engagement proposal I was asked to photograph, this time at the Ripley’s Aquarium in Broadway at the Beach. I was contacted by the young guy to hopefully get some surprise pictures of the proposal to his girlfriend, it’s usually hard for the girl not to know something is up by the time I spot them.  I’ve done a number of these type of surprise proposals recently, they are always really fun to shoot, and so far the girl has always said yes!  So maybe it’s a good idea to have me there :).

I’ve actually been to the Aquarium once for a wedding reception and one other time actually inside for engagement pictures.  For this young couple, they just wanted to do the pictures around the outside of the Aquarium on the lake and the walkways of Broadway at the Beach.  I believe he had told me they had first met, or possibly had their first date at Ripley’s Aquarium, so that is why he wanted to propose there.  Most of the year I would want to avoid that area for pictures, in the summer it’s just packed with people and it would be very difficult to do anything romantic. However, at the beginning of December, it’s a really off season time, and hardly anyone was around so we pretty much had the place to ourselves.  I thought the pictures turned out really nice, let me know in the comments below if you enjoy them.

Read post and view pictures Surprise engagement proposal at Broadway at the Beach in Myrtle Beach

Engagement pictures with an emotional marriage proposal on the beach

I had another fun couple that hired me for their engagement pictures as well as a marriage proposal on the beach. This one was a bit different than my last couple of proposals because his girlfriend knew that he was going to propose. This actually made it a bit easier for me because I didn’t have to try and be sneaky with my pictures of the proposal.  I also got to set the position of the couple up a little bit so there wouldn’t be people in the background.  We started out doing just my typical style engagement pictures around the oak trees and sea oats in the State Park in Myrtle Beach. Then he proposed to her near the end of the session before sunset.

I was just thinking about how a lot of photographers get really caught up in trying to be artistic with their pictures, things like color effects or unusual composure and tilting of the image. Something you learn after a while, just capturing a clear picture of something emotional happening is so much more important than anything else.  For example, in one of the pictures below, his ‘about to be fiance’ is starting to cry as he shows her the ring. When I put this one on Facebook it immediately got a lot of likes, more than most of my pictures that I would consider more artistic.  This is just a clear, in focus picture using a high quality lens that captures the moment.  I hope you enjoy the pictures below, please comment if you do.

Read post and view pictures Engagement pictures with an emotional marriage proposal on the beach