Sunday, April 26, 2009

Vocce Couture in Orlando

The Orlando Sentinel recently did an article about a new fashion venture based in Orlando. Vocce Couture is a great story about two Orlando women, Norma Allen and Thuy Nguyen, who met at a belly-dancing class in 2007. Five months later, they launched a small fashion design business together. In February 2009 they took their collection to Couture Fashion Week in New York.

Brooklyn Wallace was our model and she was great to work with. The shoot took place at the Enzian Theater, although the Sentinel wasn't looking for too much of the theater, so we made use of the great foliage around it. Brooklyn really did a great job making use of the surroundings and making my life easier.

I hope I get a chance to work with all of them again.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Fun with Wedding Professionals!

During a Grand Soiree, a couple weeks ago, to celebrate another copy of Orlando Wedding Professionals at the Global Gallery in Orlando. I had a chance to play around in a Photo Booth with a couple other awesome wedding professionals. These guys and gals know how to have a good time!

Ashlie Hampton

Lee Forrest

Heather Ahrens


Of Course Myself!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Happy One Year Anniversary Heather and Eric!

Congratulations on your one year anniversary! I included a few favorites with an updated look. Also Happy birthday Heather!

Heather and Eric were married at the Casements in Ormond Beach on April 19, 2008.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Putting West Volusia on the Wedding Map

I'm on a mission.

I've lived in DeLand for seven years now and I have found it to have some amazing venues for weddings and other events, but keep finding myself headed elsewhere in Central Florida to photograph them. I'm also finding myself going elsewhere for networking events.

One of my goals is to see Volusia (West Volusia especially) showcased for the beautiful place that it is. I would like to see more open houses at the local venues and I will be happy to help organize some of them. Open houses for vendors in other cities have been where I have been meeting a lot of the Orlando wedding professionals. The events also do an excellent job of showcasing what these people can do.

I am interested in finding venues who want to open their doors and other vendors (Like caterers and florists) who would like to show off their abilities and broaden their reach outside of just DeLand. I think the relationships that these events build can be invaluable during hard times and good times.

According to a 2009 survey by The Knot which polled 18k brides, they are looking for more unique venues. "Brides are Looking for More Unique Locations: Traditional venues, like reception halls and restaurants, dropped off slightly (10% and 11% respectively) as couples chose inventive sites, such as historical buildings, vineyards, and beaches. In 2008, 35% of ceremonies took place outdoors. "

I would also like to see an association for West Volusia (or Volusia) wedding professionals to regularly meet and to network.

One other thought is that after things get rolling we can start doing some open houses for the general public.

So if you are a Volusia vendor reading this, or you want to connect with Volusia County vendors, please contact me!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

25 Random things about me

25 Random things about me - (Ok 26...)
1. I planned our wedding in April of 2005. I had a ton of fun doing it and if the opportunity ever came to plan another event like that or events like that for other people I would jump at it. I love going to parties and I was planning one of the most memorable parties of my life. I didn't want it to be a wedding like anyone else has ever seen. The top of the cake was balanced on the same champagne glasses we did our toast with. We hired a live jazz band. Did I mention that it all took place on a dining yacht? To cap it all off we left by horse and carriage.
2. From the time I was a sophomore in high school I set out to be a professional photographer.
3. Rugby was my sport of choice until college
4. Before college I weighed 260lbs with a 44in waist
5. Now I am an amateur triathlete with sponsors (Rudy Project, Honey Stinger and of course I have to sponsor myself with Pilster Photography)
6. My two dogs are Cheya and Soma. They are both mixes, rescued from the Humane Society as puppies and weigh over 55lbs.
7. My computer of choice has been an Apple since I was in sixth grade. I think this makes me a nerd
8. I love independent films
9. My home is the Bay Area of California, I grew up and lived there for over 20 years, but I only applied for internships in photojournalism outside of the state.
10. Our home was worth every penny, even though we can only get half of what we paid for it. Although I do feel a little trapped in Florida. We made a good move and bought a house right when we got to Florida before the market took off and moved again before it crashed.
11. My haircut didn't change (Bowl cut with a part) until my college classmates gave me some divine intervention and showed me a great stylist to go to (Thanks Sara and Lexey!) After my haircut changed I felt like people paid more attention to me. It was a weird feeling!
12. Kids are definitely happening within the next few years. I get jealous of some of my friends who have them.
13. My wife and I met while I was on an internship in a town in town of 20,000 people in the middle of Kansas. We met on the steps of the house next door to the one I was living in and five houses away from hers. After I cooked her dinner the next night we practically started living together. This was October of 2001.
14. I've been in the middle of earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, tropical storms, blizzards, and monsoons. I don't think there are many natural disasters that I haven't been a part of.
15. I love helping my wife shop for clothes. Men have had the same style of clothes for 50 years and I'm a little bored with it.
16. When I was a kid I collected comics and still have them at my moms. It will be worth millions one day, right?
17. I worked for an internet company being paid well for chat hosting during the internet boom. It paid for most of my early camera equipment and computer equipment during high school and college.
18. Games are dangerous for me (Computer or offline). I can sit in front of one from dusk till dawn and not even realize where the night went. I love spades, but avoid putting any games on my computer because of the temptation.
19. When I was growing up, I thought about going into managing information systems before I fell in love with photography. I still can troubleshoot most computer problems, but try not to show this ability because I don't want to become everyone's 24 hour tech support.
20. Do what you can to help people, favors will come back to you. I am getting better at waiting for people to ask for help instead telling everyone the way it is (Even if I am right)
21. Knowing the names of bands has never been easy for me. I used to listen to the radio all the time growing up, but I'm a visual person. I didn't start learning band names until I could start looking music up on the internet. When I received a Tower Records gift certificate I bought a CD because of it's cool album cover. That CD was Iron Maiden and I actually liked it.
22. I can be stubborn. When I think I'm right about something, I will research it or push myself in that direction until I have to admit defeat or be able to say "I told you so"
23. Without a job in sight, I packed my car with my future wife, moved to St. Louis and started freelancing. I did it because I knew I wanted to be a photojournalist. I tried looking for other work after I left my job at the newspaper, but I still want to be a photojournalist and am doing whatever I can to continue making photos for a living.
24. We eventually want to move back to the west coast.
25. I'm cautious because I can be gullible. I'm an optimist. Everyone I meet starts out as my friend and can move in either direction from there.
26. I have to do lists, but I can be the worst procrastinator unless I have a firm deadline for something. (I think this took me six months to fill out)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

3rd Place in Bella Pictures Monthly Photo Contest

I just picked up 3rd place for March, in the photojournalism category, for Bella Pictures ( internal monthly photo contest

Monday, April 13, 2009

Central Florida Networking

Wow, the past few weeks have been busy, but not with weddings. I've been making the rounds and trying to meet some of the other local wedding professionals in the area.

The events have taken me all over central Florida. Here are some of the highlights.

Central Park Weddings in Lake Mary. This is the startup of a group with a great idea to bring wedding professionals from every category under one roof. They will have a storefront which brides can go to and do all of their wedding shopping in one place. Right now they are only going to showcase a single professional from each category, but hopefully in the future they will have multiple vendors.

Orlando Wedding Professionals is helping start a Lake County Wedding Professionals group. They held a gathering at Lake Receptions a gorgeous venue in Mount Dora.

• All this time I've been working with James Schaffer, an amazing graphic artist and wedding album designer, to design a new sample Louvre album for me. Check out the preview. It's going to be gorgeous when it get's back from Italy.

• Last week was an awesome vendors event put on by the Perfect Wedding Guide at the newly remodeled Highland Manor in Apopka. Highland manor has a great classic look to it and the people who run it are awesome.

• To wrap it up last Friday I took my wife for the grand opening of Unique Option Event Partners new location. If you are ever looking to furnish your event, or even your home temporarily, these are the people for cool and modern furniture. We enjoyed lunch with them and checked to make sure the couches were comfortable. They got two thumbs up!

This must be the season for events, because I'm looking at the schedule and seeing even more coming up. I have met some amazing people so far and I look forward to working with many of them.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

What 18k Brides have to say about their wedding expenses

Some new survey results are out. The Knot polled 18,000 newlyweds and asked them a series of questions about the budget for their wedding.

You can find a summary of it here.

There were some interesting things. According to the budget the top three priorities for brides were the venue, the band and the photographer.

The average paid for photography was $2655.

One other thing to note is that "Photography Is Editorial and Digital: Almost all (93%) brides chose “documentary” style photographers, and 90% of photographers shot in digital."

So if you are looking for average, this is probably a good price point to start and if you want better than average, prepare to spend more. I would definitely be wary, and ask a lot of questions, if a photographer charges less than this.

One thing to remember is that this is your special day, and when you go back in 20, 30, 50 or more years to remember it, you will be looking at the photos.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Bottle Picture Frames

I want to thank @intimatewedding on Twitter for this tip.

I am always looking for something Weird, But Cool even when it comes to my picture frames. These ones are awesome and different.

Now I am going to have to go find some cool bottles and start printing some pictures. Can you imagine putting a mobile together with these. You could create a picture frame wind chime! This could be fun
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