She said yes - Myrtle Beach State Park

Surprise engagement proposal on a beautiful winter evening in Myrtle Beach

I always love the Myrtle Beach State Park at sunset in the winter. This time of the year the sky just seems clearer and the water is more blue. I don’t know if it’s perhaps the lower humidity or just the difference in the angle of the sunset. We had one of those perfect winter …

View post Surprise engagement proposal on a beautiful winter evening in Myrtle Beach

Guy getting a really big hug after surprise proposal - Myrtle Beach State Park

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 …

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

Putting on the engagement ring in front of the pier

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.

Couple sitting on the oak tree Couple standing behind the dead oak in the state park

View post Engagement pictures with an emotional marriage proposal on the beach

Couple laying together in the sand - Litchfield Beach

Engagement pictures at the Litchfield Golf and Beach Club

I had the opportunity to do engagement pictures for this very nice couple staying at the Litchfield Golf and Beach Club. I’ve done weddings in this area before, but I’ve never been there just for engagement pictures. I’m glad they suggested doing them there because it is a really pretty area. I knew some of the spots I liked out in front of the club from previous weddings, it’s always great when you can get some nice light coming through the leaves of oak trees. Using a really good lens turns blurs out the background sunlight in a really pretty way. The fallen oak is a very popular spot to do pictures as well, it can just be challenging to get shots without any cars in the background.

After doing pictures out in front of the club we went back to some hammocks that the couple had noticed. Then we went down to the beach at the beach club area. The weather was just about perfect and the water looked really blue that evening. Of course, if they weren’t staying in the area we could have done the pictures out front, but you need to have a pass to actually get into the area where we went on the beach. At the end of the session we even did a little pretend proposal just for fun. This was a really beautiful evening and a fun couple, they had been together for over 10 years but were still up for being romantic.  I’m sure you will enjoy the pictures below.  Please comment below or share these pictures if you like them.

Couple on the walkway in front of the Litchfield Golf Club Couple kissing under the oak trees in front of the Litchfield Golf Club

View post Engagement pictures at the Litchfield Golf and Beach Club

High contrast black and white under the pier

Secret pictures of an engagement proposal again!

I recently had another chance to do pictures of a wedding proposal along with engagement pictures after. This client actually saw my last blog post and wanted to do something similar, so I guess people do read my blog sometimes. Something cool about being a photographer is you can count all your camera gadgets as a business expense, which if you are like me is where a lot of money goes anyway.

Olympus OM-D E-M5

I mentioned before that I recently got a small Olympus OM-D mirrorless micro four thirds camera, mostly to take hiking and for fun, but I’ve actually been able to incorporate it into my work a bit as well. Getting a good macro lens for a full frame camera like my Nikon D800 is extremely expensive, and I only use it very occasionally so it’s hard to justify. But I got a 60mm (equivalent to about a 135mm in a full frame lens) macro lens for my Olympus camera and I’ve done some amazing closeups of bride’s rings and things like that recently.

Macro of Bride’s ring using Photoshop focus stacking

However, I wanted to be stealthy for the proposal and not look like a big photographer with a huge camera, so I decided to try using my OM-D and the 60mm lens to get some candid shots. It did quite a nice job, the only problem was that I meant for him to take her further away from the pier to propose. There ended up being a bunch of people right in the background. Oh well it’s hard to be perfect. When I asked later, his fiance did say that she saw me taking the pictures, so I guess I wasn’t quite stealthy enough. But I didn’t notice her looking at me and it didn’t seem to bother the moment at all as far as I could tell.

Then of course after the initial proposal I went to my usual gear of the Nikon D800, Nikon 85mm f1.4 lens, and my off camera flash. Of course when you switch to expensive big camera gear you are going to notice a difference in the quality over my little Olympus camera. I actually listen to some podcasts where they seem to think that photography will be moving to these smaller mirrorless cameras. I can tell you they are nice, but they in no way compare to a big camera with a big fast lens. When it comes to camera sensors and lenses, for portraits bigger is always better. Without going into too much detail, the bigger a sensor and lens is, typically the better the blur or bokeh in the background will be.  I hope you enjoy some of these pictures below, please don’t forget to like and comment below if you do, or pin some to your Pinterest board.

Candid pictures of marriage proposal at the Myrtle Beach State Park

View post Secret pictures of an engagement proposal again!

Couple smiling at each other in front of the pier

Secret pictures of marriage proposal and engagement portraits after

I got to do something fun last week, trying to do marriage proposal pictures without being noticed. The man’s family, including his daughter, were hiding by the dunes while we waited for him and his girlfriend to arrive at the beach. There are always a lot of photographers down at the state park so it was pretty easy to blend in. I don’t think his girlfriend actually noticed me until after he proposed, so I thought I did a pretty good job. Then they just did engagement pictures on the beach together. It was a lot of fun, and easy to get some romantic pictures right after a proposal like that.  I guess you would only want to do this if you were sure she would say yes :)  I hope you enjoy some of the pictures below.