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

Engagement pictures for a couple and their dog on a cloudy day at the Myrtle Beach State Park

I had another really nice couple for engagement portraits at the Myrtle Beach State Park this past week. I’ve got their wedding coming up later this year. This couple brought along their baby for the moment, their little dog. I can’t remember what it was exactly, I know it was a poodle mix of some kind. I have two poodles myself, they are very sweet dogs as long as they are used to being around people. My dogs both love when clients are coming by to discuss a wedding, I tell them people are coming and they will wait by the window.

You have to be careful when a couple is mixed race like this one and have extremely different skin tones.  His skin was very dark, and she had very fair light skin. If you were to have a camera on spot metering and only set the exposure for his face, hers could be overexposed.  Or the opposite if you metered the camera on her face.  Of course this isn’t really much of an issue anymore, modern cameras have so much dynamic range it’s hard to mess up more than a little adjustment in Lightroom will take care of.

Even as good as modern cameras are, I usually shoot on manual and just check every few shots on the screen, you really can’t go wrong doing it this way. Subjects backlit by sunlight are going to trick up a camera on auto exposure, and you get a lot more consistency on manual which helps for a quicker workflow later when doing adjustments. This was a very cloudy overcast day which made things easier, of course you also don’t get the nice look of the sunset, but it can be good in it’s own way.  I hope you enjoy the pictures below, please comment if you do.

Fall family pictures in North Myrtle Beach and the State Park

During the summer when I’m doing lots of family pictures I don’t have time to blog about them, most of my posts are about weddings and the occasional engagement session. But since it’s my slow time now I thought I would put up a post about a couple of recent family sessions.

The first was a family session I did up in the Cherry Grove area of North Myrtle Beach. They had the idea to bring out a bench which made for some cute shots. It wasn’t the greatest weather that day, but the happy family made the pictures work great anyway. It’s nice when brothers and sisters of that age will have fun with the pictures and not just act like their parents are forcing them. I do my best to make the pictures relaxed and easy, but if everyone in a family can just be positive it sure makes my job easier.

The second session was a cute large family I photographed at the Myrtle Beach State Park. We actually got about a 20 minute late start from when I wanted to begin, so I was in my rapid fire wedding mode where I’m shooting as fast as I can. But we pretty much got everything we needed, and it worked out so some of the last pictures were right at an amazing sunset. It was cold that evening, but this time of the year also brings really beautiful sunsets, you just don’t get anything that looks quite like this in the summer. Let me know if you enjoy the pictures below, getting likes or comments really makes it easier to go through the work of posting.

Cute engagement portraits at the Myrtle Beach State Park

I haven’t posted anything to the blog in a while so I decided I better make a post so everyone doesn’t think I’ve stopped working.  Actually, I’ve been extremely busy and it has made it hard to take the time to do this, and of course I’ve been playing with my new iPad 2 a bit as well :)  Being a photographer is a good excuse to tell your wife you need an iPad.  I’ve got some really great bridal portraits I’m going to be posting soon, I just have to wait a few weeks until after the wedding to make sure the groom doesn’t see what the dress looks like.

I thought I would put up some pictures from a recent pre-engagement session at the Myrtle Beach State Park.  This is a young couple that is not actually engaged yet but wanted to do some pictures.  They started out a bit shy and uncomfortable, the guy in the pictures was actually hearing impaired, but could read lips.  I find it amazing that someone can do that, I just had to be careful to speak towards him.  I try to be really easy going and make the pictures as fun as possible, I know it’s not easy trying to be romantic with someone pointing a camera at you.  I thought the pictures ended up being really cute and fun, I hope you enjoy some of them below.  And remember, many clients are nervous about getting pictures done, but it’s really not that bad.  It can actually end up being pretty fun, I hear that from a lot of clients after their appointment.

Pre engagement pictures with a young couple – Myrtle Beach State Park
Sunset light coming through the trees – Myrtle Beach State Park

Read post and view pictures Cute engagement portraits at the Myrtle Beach State Park

Overcast sky, soft light engagement pictures

I had another nice engagement session at the Myrtle Beach State Park for a young couple that are not getting married for a couple of years yet.  They are getting married back home so I won’t be doing their wedding.  It was a cloudy day with just a little bit of color from the sunset showing through the clouds. Actually, when the sky is cloudy, it can be one of the best times to get shots that look more like in a studio.  In a photo studio they use these big boxes over their flashes or lights called a soft box.  Basically it’s like putting a sheet in front of a light, it makes it soft and kind of disperses the light around.  That is similar to what an overcast sky does, instead of strong direct light you get a more soft and dispersed light without as harsh of shadows.

However, an overcast day can make for a pretty boring flat look to the images with eyes that are kind of dark and lifeless.  Everything is kind of a trade off trying to work outdoors, you do the best you can with what you have to work with.  One thing that helps, you will notice there is a little sparkle in the clients eyes.  This is because I’m using a some fill flash.  Flash is very important even when shooting in plenty of light outdoors. In the future I’m actually going to experiment with more off camera wireless flashes to see if I can get a more unique look to the images.

I was really happy with the way the shots turned about, I ended up with about 150 shots that I liked, so that was a really good session.  I hope you enjoy some of the pictures below.  If you like this post, please try out my few Facebook comment system at the bottom of the post after the pictures.

Couple laying by the oak trees - Myrtle Beach State Park
Couple having fun on the oak trees - Myrtle Beach State Park

Read post and view pictures Overcast sky, soft light engagement pictures

Engagement portraits at the Myrtle Beach State Park

It’s getting hard to find some pictures to blog about this time of the year, I did have some brave families do pictures even in the cold over the holidays.  I had one family that wanted to do pictures indoors as well as down on the beach in the cold, which turned out nice.  Of course I could tell the guys were not too happy about it. It’s really not that bad though, I try to work quickly and just snap a lot of different shots and things really move along fast.

Now about the pictures in this post, this was a really nice couple I did engagement pictures for over the holidays at the Myrtle Beach State Park. Their wedding is going to be in another area, so sadly I won’t be doing a wedding for this couple. It was quite cold, but at least the weather was clear and there was a nice sunset.  The guy liked goofing around and I got a lot of funny shots, they seemed to stay smiling most of the time which is what is really important.  I hope you enjoy some of the pictures below.

Couple in the Sunset silhouette
Couple laying by the dunes

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

Nice smiles at the Myrtle Beach State Park

My wife and I are both terrible at smiling at the camera, most people really don’t look very natural when they try to smile, so I really feel for clients trying to get their pictures taken. I always try to shoot fast and joke about things to keep it relaxed, the worst type of picture is when someone makes you wait for the shot.  Don’t you hate it when people pull out their point and shoot camera, count to three, then still wait a few second for the shot.  That is a good recipe for getting the worst possible shot.  Still, even with a fast DSLR, most of the time my favorite shots are when the couples are looking at each other or just catching natural smiles when they happen.  This couple though just seemed to have naturally great smiles, that is why I picked to post below a number of pictures where they are looking at the camera.  They were up for anything and seemed to really enjoy the pictures, I’m looking forward to doing their wedding next year.  I hope you enjoy some of the shots below.

Read post and view pictures Nice smiles at the Myrtle Beach State Park

Engagement Pictures from the Myrtle Beach State Park

I haven’t posted anything on the blog in a while, so I just decided to quickly put up a few of my favorite pictures from the past few weeks.  It seems like I’ve had a number of engagement sessions recently, more than usual.  It’s especially nice if I’m also doing the couple’s wedding, it gives them a bit of practice.  It’s always easier when things are rushed and stressful at a wedding if the couple basically knows what getting their pictures taken is going to be like.  From what I’ve noticed it seems like everyone always has a lot better time than they think they will going into the session.  I hope you enjoy some of the pictures below.

Read post and view pictures Engagement Pictures from the Myrtle Beach State Park

Third year with family – Myrtle Beach State Park

I just wanted to make a quick blog post about this recent family session. This is my third time working with this family. They were one of the groups I photographed back when I was really just getting started, I’ve learned quite a bit since then, but they always seem happy. It’s nice to see the same faces over and over again. Every year I seem to get the cutest shots with the kids. They both have really big eyes that just seem to reflect the light perfectly. The family wanted something a bit different this year, so I took them around the oak trees in the Myrtle Beach State Park, and that seemed to work out really well. I love some of the shots of the girls looking through the trees. I could have put up a bunch of pictures, but I tried to pick just a few of my favorite below.

Read post and view pictures Third year with family – Myrtle Beach State Park

Engagement pictures of the Myrtle Beach state park.

It’s been a while since I’ve done just engagement pictures without having a wedding involved. I had two couples this past week, both of them were great to work with.  I’ll post a few pictures from their sessions below, I think that I’m actually getting very good at getting couples to relax and have fun with the pictures.  I hope you enjoy them.

Read post and view pictures Engagement pictures of the Myrtle Beach state park.