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Destination Wedding Photographer: Rick+Anna Photography

Venue: Crossroads Weddings at Thomas Family Farms

Planner/Coordinator: Keelie of KLS Events

Florals: Carol Dunham

Bridal Gown: Olia Zavozina

DJ: Mobile Celebrations

Invitations: Merchant’s Invites

Hair Stylist: Tarianne Campbell

Makeup Artist: Reine and Jasmin

Catering: Honey! I’m Home! Catering

Cake/Desserts: Central Market Mill Creek

Rings: Green Lake Jewelry Works

Favors: Macdons

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Happy Wednesday everyone!  We’re excited about today’s blog, because we’ve decided to share something publicly that’s been going on in the background of our lives for quite some time now, and we’re ready to share it with the world in a more public way and to continue to grow this part of our business!

But first…a little background info…

When we first started our photography business, we remember feeling completely out of place and overwhelmed by the photography industry as a whole – and because we didn’t know any other professional photographers when we were starting out, we weren’t really sure where to turn for help when we needed it…in fact, we thought that all of the more established photographers in our area would only see us as competition…so we were scared to even approach them, let alone ask for them to mentor us.   As a result, we struggled through a lot of tough lessons in the beginning, and we had very little support or help.  Thankfully, our business grew faster than we ever could have dreamed in those first couple of years, and we eventually discovered that the photography community is actually a really inviting and supportive place to be!  As we gained confidence in our business and our photography, we also gained the confidence to make connections with other photographers, and making those connections literally catapulted our business forward in many ways.  We started swapping referrals with friends, we gained a support system to reach out to when we had technical or business questions, and we suddenly found ourselves surrounded by a community of like-minded business owners.  It was a turning point for us, and we’re thankful to have chosen a passion and profession in an industry where so many of our so-called competitors are also our closest friends and supporters.

After those first two lonely years in business, Rick and I sat down and made a private commitment.   We knew that we didn’t want any other new photographers to feel the way that we felt when we were starting out – so we decided to start giving back whenever possible…  It started simply enough….we started reaching out to newer photographers in our area to connect with them and offer help.  When we attended networking events, we would seek out the new photographers and invite them to sit with us.  We met up with as many photographers as possible for coffee to talk about  marketing, we hosted small get togethers focused on learning off camera lighting, we coordinated social events, and (most popularly) we sometimes invited them to join us on actual wedding days to gain hands on experience while assisting us and working alongside us (we still do this today!).  A few years ago, we had over 20 interns during one of our wedding seasons!  As our business has continued to grow and thrive over the years we’ve continued to intentionally offer support to new photographers behind the scenes, and one of the most rewarding parts of our business has been watching the photographers that we’ve invested our time into succeed in their businesses.

And that takes us to where we are today….

Like many of our friends in this industry, we began this journey because of our love for photography (and for working together full time!), but quickly realized that running a sustainable and profitable business that would support our family was much more about the BUSINESS side of things than it was about actually taking photos.  And over the past 3-4 years especially, we’ve seen many of the photographers who started their businesses when we did leave the industry because they were struggling financially in their businesses, or because they working too many hours for not enough pay and getting burned out, or simply because their business was fizzling out – and it always breaks our hearts.

Not only do you need to be a master at your craft as a successful wedding photographer, but you’ve also got to be a marketing expert, a social media guru, a professional photo editor, and website designer, a bookkeeper, a secretary, an album designer, a blogger, a professional networker, etc etc etc…the list goes on and on.

And so, at some point over these past few years, our focus has shifted slightly from not only helping only brand new photographers with the technical side of things, but also to working with more established photographers who are struggling with sustainability and profitability in their businesses.  There is nothing more exciting for me that getting a message from a photographer that we’re mentoring letting me know that they just booked another client, or had a wonderful sale, or exceeded their business goals for the month as a result of our help!  At some point last year, we maxed out with the number of photographers that we were able to mentor in our limited time, and it’s been frustrating for us to have to turn people down or put them on a waiting list when they reach out to us, because we know that if they’re reaching out, then they REALLY need our help in that moment, but unfortunately here simply aren’t enough hours in the day for us to help everyone and answer all of the emails!

So – a couple of months ago we started a private Facebook group that is all about “Business Coaching For Photographers,” and we’ve been able to open it up to all professional photographers who are interested in getting daily advice, encouragement, and business coaching from us for free.  We do live videos weekly, we answer questions and provide advice daily, and we are thrilled with how our little community has grown to over 500 strong and for the relationships that have been created as a result.  This group gives us the opportunity to assist WAY more photographers than we could possibly help via one on one coaching, to share things with the group that we wouldn’t typically share publicly, and we absolutely love the dynamics of the group and the honesty and realness that is shared on a daily basis about all things business.  So – if you’re a photographer looking for a little extra boost, or for pricing, marketing, or any type of business advice – we hope you’ll join us!  Click on the photo below to request to join…and we’ll see you in there!  Love, A

 

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Destination Wedding Photographer: Rick+Anna Photography

We were thrilled to travel back to Seattle this year to shoot Anna+Ryan’s wedding, and to team up with Alex of Taylor’d Events to bring together all of the details!  We started at the Bellevue Hilton where the girls were getting ready, and then spent the rest of the day before the wedding jaunting around Seattle in the party bus hitting most of the iconic tourist spots – including the bench at Alki Beach where Ryan proposed to Anna, Pioneer Square, Kerry Park with it’s sweeping skyline views, and Pike Place Market.  It was so fun to have such a great variety of locations to shoot, and we absolutely loved having so much time to work with Anna+Ryan and their bridal party!  Our favorite thing about the day was all of the emotion (and happy tears!) that we had the opportunity to capture during the first look, ceremony, and reception…

Anna+Ryan, thank you so much for being so awesome – we wish you all the best as you begin your journey as a married couple!

Planning/Coordination: Alex of Taylor’d Events

Venue: The Foundry by Herban Feast

Florals: Fena Flowers

Hair/Makeup: Anne Timss

Transportation: Butler Transportation

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  • August 19, 2016 - 4:19 pm

    Butler Transportation - We had such a fun time driving around Anna, Ryan, and their entourage for these gorgeous iconic Seattle locale pre-wedding photos! Magnificent images Rick+Anna, you really captured the fun and love between these two and the day. And congratulations to the happy couple, we loved helping celebrate your special day and wish you a lifetime of happiness! ~ Butler TransportationReplyCancel

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I feel like we haven’t had a chance to share many personal or behind the scenes posts on our blog these past few months, and I really want to change that!  I’ve always loved blogging the more personal stuff, but the busy-ness of this year and welcoming another baby boy into the family definitely caught up with us at some point and it kind of fell off, so I’m making a conscious effort to bring it back as I prep my blogging calendar for the next month!  We’ve been working so hard this past year to grow our business here in the Atlanta area, and these past few months we’ve also been putting a lot of time and effort into our “Business Coaching For Photographers” group and working on other (still top secret, but details are coming soon) projects behind the scenes – and one of the ways that we’ve had the opportunity to connect in person with photographers and top tier vendors here in the Atlanta area is by hosting group styled shoots (join our FB group here for details on how to join us at the next one), like the one we’re featuring today on the blog.
When we first started our business, the thought of reaching out to more established photographers intimidated and terrified us – and I’m so thankful that at some point we started making friends in the industry, because these days our photographer friends have become our biggest cheerleaders, referral sources, and supporters.  At this point we’ve been lucky enough to have had the opportunity to meet and work with photographers from all over the world…and we’ve discovered that it’s one of the friendliest and least cutthroat industries in existence.  The photographers who may appear on paper to be our biggest “competitors” are some of our biggest supporters (and vice versa of course!), and we’re so, so, thankful for that – because spending most of your days sitting alone behind the computer can be a lonely gig if you don’t have a community to support you and lift you up.  Hosting these styled shoots has been a goal of ours for almost a year, so it’s been really special to see them come to life with the help of the vendors who have participated – and to cultivate growth and community amongst the photographers in our local industry.
All of that being said, we love our local Atlanta photography community, and we’ve been more than thrilled to host them for these group shoots!  Today we’re sharing a behind the scenes look into our recent “Modern Sophistication” shoot!
A huge thank you to the AMAZING creative team (and our sponsors!) who worked so hard to bring this shoot to life:
Hosts: Rick+Anna Photography – www.rickplusanna.com
Planning/Design: Savannah Kilpatrick – www.savannahkilpatrick.com
Venue: Ventanas Atlanta – www.ventanasatlanta.com
Hair/Makeup: Evolve Beauty – www.evolvebeautyatl.com  and Rel Artistry – www.relartistry.wix.com/relartistry
Florals: Blooming Hites – www.bloominghites.com
Bridal Attire: Elite Pour La Vie – www.elitepourlavie.com
Grooms Attire: The Modern Gent – www.themodern-gent.com
Models: Lauren Basilone(Bride), Justin Boykin(Groom), A’shirell Cunningham(Bridesmaid), Courtney Dietz(Bridesmaid)
Videography: Michael Mangum – www.vimeo.com/user46587218
Stationary: Sarah Ingram – www.sarah-ingram.com
Cake/Bakery: Confection Perfection – www.confectionperfectioncakes.com
Jewelry: Rebecca Minkoff(Fashion Jewelry) www.rebeccaminkoff.com, Swarovski Crystal – www.swarovski.com
Chair Rentals: Clear Chair Atlanta – www.clearchairatlanta.com
Chargers, China, & Glassware Rentals: Event Rentals Unlimited –www.erultd.com
Linens: I Do Linens – www.idolinens.com
Flatware, Acrylic Tray & Acrylic Holder: West Elm – www.westelm.com
Bridal (detail shot) Shoes: Gucci – www.gucci.com
Ceramic Ringholder: Grice Grove – www.gricegrove.com
Sponsors: The Knot – www.theknot.com, 17hats –www.17hats.com, Miller’s Lab – www.millerslab.com, Profoto – www.profoto.com, Spider Holster –www.spiderholster.com
PS. Registration for our upcoming September shoot just opened on Monday and the seats are already almost filled – join this group to get details and grab your spot!
Group shot!
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Lullwater Park Engagement Photos: Rick+Anna Photography

We were so excited when Ann+Ryan suggested Lullwater Park for their engagement photos because we had never shot there before – and it did not disappoint….with its woodsy trails, pond area, bike paths, bridges, and creeks – it was the perfect setting for a diverse gallery of photos.  By the time we’re publishing this blog, Ann+Ryan are already married (can’t wait to share their wedding day with you!!!), but we loved reliving this session as we prepped these photos for sharing.  Ann+Ryan are super laid back and fun to be around, and this shoot felt more like a walk around a park with old friends with a few photos sprinkled in than anything else.  Enjoy!

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