Lucy + Seth • The Wedding •

Lucy and Seth were recently married at Kye’s in Southern Indiana.  Here are a few of my favorites from the day.  Lucy looked absolutely stunning in a dress that looked like it was made especially for her!  The weather wasn’t the greatest, but we did mangage to pull off a decent image with the Bentley.  It might be one of my favorites for the year!

Louisville Kentucky Wedding Photographer Kyes Kye's

Louisville Kentucky Wedding Photographer Kyes Kye's

Bridal Portrait

Wedding Rings Detail

Louisville Kentucky Wedding Photographer Kyes Kye's

Louisville Kentucky Wedding Photographer Kyes Kye's

Louisville Kentucky Wedding Photographer Kyes Kye's

Wedding couple in a Bentley

Louisville Kentucky Wedding Photographer Kyes Kye's

Louisville Kentucky Wedding Photographer Kyes Kye's

First Dance

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Engagement Photo Guest Books

After 17 years of moving my wedding guest book from house to house in the same box of unused items, I finally threw out out. I didn’t even open it. I honestly don’t think I ever have. Wouldn’t it be great to have a guest book that has special meaning to you, instead of just a plain white book with a list of names?

Fortunately times have changed, and artistic options are available. One of our most popular products in the last year has been the Guest Book from the engagement session.  I much prefer this option over a traditional guest book or a signature mat.   The main purposes of a mat is to provide white space around an image and put the focus on the photo.  Signatures take away away that impact and it is difficult to evenly space the signatures on a mat so that it looks nice.

Tips for getting the most from your guest book:

  1. Only use the pens that we provide. We have tested several pens and the one that works best by far is the Slick Writer from American American Crafts. I got my last batch from 123stitch.com
  2. Take your book to the rehearsal dinner and have your wedding party and family sign it then.
  3. Have a guest book attendant that can be responsible to getting the signatures, making sure the guests use the correct pen, and keeping it safe.
  4. Don’t allow the book to be placed on a table with food and drink.
Guest Signature Book Louisville (1)

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Guest Signature Book Louisville (2)

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Guest Signature Book Louisville (3)

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Guest Signature Book Louisville (4)

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Jennifer & Taylor • Engagement Session •

Here are a few of my favorites from the engagement session for Jennifer and Taylor last fall.  We had a perfect warm and sunny day at Bernheim Forest and these guys were awesome in front of the camera.  I’m especially looking forward to this wedding next month because Taylor is my almost-step-brother!  It should be a great time working with family.

Louisville Kentucky Wedding Engagement Photographer

Louisville Kentucky Wedding Engagement Photographer

Louisville Kentucky Wedding Engagement Photographer

Engagement Wedding Photos Bernheim Forest

Engagement Wedding Photos Bernheim Forest

Engagement Wedding Photos Bernheim Forest

Engagement Wedding Photos Bernheim Forest

Sunset Engagement Photos

Sunset Engagement Photos

Engagement Ring

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Widget Wednesday • The Vagabond Mini •

Shooting in bright sunlight can be difficult, especially with the limited dynamic range of DSLRs, and shooting toward the sun usually results in blown skies, desaturated images, and poor contrast. There are ways to work with the sun and get perfectly lovely images, like using scrims, reflectors, or avoiding it altogether, but these can sometimes result in artistic compromise. Yes, the sun can be a formidable foe and not easily overpowered. The solution? Bring your OWN light to the party.

The hardest part of lighting a scene in bright sunshine is the power required. It’s possible to use speedlights, but it would take many speedlights, with many, many batteries, to even come close, with questionable consistency and recycle time. A monolight with a portable power pack is perfectly suited for shooting in the sun. The Vagabond from Paul C. Buff has always been a popular choice for a power pack, and there many DIY solutions on the internet, but the additional weight (18.6 lbs!) is just a bit much to add to the gear bag. Enter the Vagabond Mini, announced by Paul C. Buff last September. My good friend Shanna Simpson had the foresight to order one early but it was on backorder for quite some time. It was finally delivered on Friday, so a field trip was definitely in order.

The Vagabond Mini is a pure sine wave power source, and weighs in at an unbelievable 3.5 pounds! It has two power outlets and a USB outlet, and can power up to four Paul C. Buff flashes. I took two Alien Bees: the B1600 and B800, and it had no problem consistenly firing them. Our playtime photos are below. We were too excited to bother getting a suitable subject…so we were our own models! As uncomfortable as it was being other side of the camera, it was a good experience to help to remind us how our clients feel.

All of these shots were taken between f14 and f20, with shutter speeds of 1/125 or 1/160, ISO 50, on the Canon 5D Mark II, 24-105L, with a split neutral density filter (although in hindsight I don’t think the filter was necessary). The B1600 was the main light, set on full power, with the B800 as fill at about 3/4 power. It was too windy on the river to use the softbox or umbrella and I was too lazy to bring sandbags. Our objective was to shoot straight into the afternoon sun and still get beautiful skies and great skintones. I was more than pleased with the results, especially for the first time taking my studio lights outdoors. The images required very little post processing.

Shanna rockin’ the shades.
Vagabond Mini Review Test Shoot

The image on the left is straight out of the camera. The image on the right is with some minor Lightroom corrections and Photoshop work.

The sun was sun was so bright that day it was hard not to squint, even looking away from the sun.
Vagabond Mini Review Test Shoot

Another one of Shanna.
Vagabond Mini Review Test Shoot

In case you were wondering…No, I didn’t fall.
Vagabond Mini Review Test Shoot

I know I really shouldn’t, but I love sun flare!
Vagabond Mini Review Test Shoot

The sun dipped behind the building so this image was taken in the shade.
Vagabond Mini Review Test Shoot


I’m definitely hooked. Since I’m pretty sure Shanna isn’t going to let me steal hers every time I shoot, I guess I’m going to have to break down and buy one for myself.

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