2017 Shoot & Share Contest Results! See which photos Beloved Sparrow Photography received recognition in this year's contest.Read More
Newborn baby boy in home photo session.Read More
Gorgeous Catholic wedding in Peachtree City, GA at Holy Trinity and Flat Creek Country Club.Read More
Our family was blessed with our 4th sweet baby BOY!Read More
Sweet moments from our son's arrival, the Fresh 48 session!Read More
Natural light, in-home newborn professional pictures of a baby girl.Read More
Emily & Jason had a beautiful, classy wedding that took place in Cleveland, Ohio! I was so honored to travel up to photograph their big day. The day began getting ready at the Hyatt Arcade in downtown Cleveland. The venue would also serve as the location of their reception later that evening and it is an incredible historic setting.
They didn't do a first look prior to the ceremony, so we had a lot of fun with the blindfolds and sneaking them around to avoid seeing each other too soon! It was sweet to see them exchange gifts and notes ahead of time, though!
The ceremony was held at Emily's childhood church and since they met at the Air Force Academy, they had the proper military sendoff with the arch of swords! We had about 5 minutes for some formal outdoor portraits in the town square en route back to The Arcade in downtown Cleveland.
The hall was decorated with colors of bright yellow and blue and Emily tied in a bird theme to give a nod to their Air Force history. I loved all the personal and detailed touches on the dessert table, at the bar, and sprinkled throughout the banquet hall!
What I'm most excited about is the gorgeous album I was able to design for them! I'm thrilled that they have their day encapsulated in a unique, heirloom album that is a work of art! I will certainly make a separate post highlighting their wedding album along with the additional beautiful pieces they ordered.
I also wanted to give a shout out to my second shooter, Desttany Groesser, for her help with photographing the guys getting ready and other angles throughout the day to help provide a fuller story of their wedding!
I was blessed with the opportunity to work with Christi of Kings Bridge Photography as an assistant photographer at a beautifully sweet wedding in Clemson, SC. My parents live in the Clemson area, so it gave me a perfect excuse to visit them over the Memorial Day weekend!
Hiring a second photographer frees up your lead photographer to take more time to be creative and not miss other details and events they would otherwise have to skip! This helps tell the complete story of your wedding day within your carefully crafted and designed heirloom album.
While Christi was photographing the bride and her girls getting ready, I captured the laughter exchanged among a nervous groom and his closest friends. I posed and photographed his formal portraits, which may have gotten overlooked in a pressured timeline. As a second photographer, I relayed rings, grabbed accessories, communicated messages, and captured another perspective of everything their special day entailed. While she swept the bride and groom away for their creative couple portraits, I ran ahead to grab images of all the little details the family invested so much time into creating before the reception hall flooded with celebrating friends and family. I hope all my brides see the importance of hiring an assistant photographer to have full coverage of their wedding day!
I have so much fun witnessing all the love and joy at a wedding, and Melody & Will had a beautiful and heartfelt ceremony.
This sweet family drove all the way down from the north suburbs of Atlanta for their family session at Line Creek Nature Area here in Peachtree City! I always love photographing families at Line Creek because there are just so many little beautiful nooks and the water glistening over the shoals is gorgeous.
Little Ethan is 17 months old and they realized it was about time to have their first professional family portraits taken of their little family! As any 17 month old is, Ethan wasn't still for long! He was so excited about all the rocks, sticks, water and anything else he could spot (and name!). My favorite images tend to be the ones of families playing together and Ethan was all about splashing in the creek. With it being early April, the creek definitely didn't feel warm, but he loved it.
With this being my second year entering the Shoot & Share Contest, let me just say how much FUN it is! The entire contest is quite a process, as it runs over the course of a month and this year had 10 rounds of voting, each round eliminating the bottom percentage of images from each of the 25 categories. Unlike most photo contests, it is completely anonymous and voted on by professional photographers and photo admirers around the world, open to anyone who wishes to jump in and see some incredible work. This year, at least 50,000 unique voters from over 130 countries participated!
The most impressive thing about the contest, I found, was that there were more than DOUBLE the number of images submitted this year over the number in the contest last year. In 2015, there were about 110,000 images. I was blessed, honored and thrilled to receive recognition that 5 of my images placed in the top 30% and I even had one make it to the final round as a FINALIST (top 7%). This year, in 2016, over 225,000 images were submitted! With the pool being SO large, I wasn't counting on making it as far as I did last year.
As the voting rounds pushed on and the pool was culled to so many stellar images, I'd anxiously wait for my little "favorites" indicator to go up just to know I had at least ONE photo left in the contest. This little feature allows other voters to "save" images that they love so they can go back later to see the camera, settings, and see more of that photographer's work. I knew I had one photo make it to Round 8, but once they released the final results, I was floored!
No, I didn't make it to the Finalist round that I did last year. However, I had a total of 19 images that received the honor of making it to the top 30% or better of the images submitted!
Top 10%: 5 images
Top 20%: 5 images
Top 30%: 9 images
I know I've grown immensely in my art over the past year and it is so reassuring to see others perceive that growth as well. So a big THANK YOU to my beautiful clients who have allowed me the privilege to capture your memories and transform them into art.
And now, I'd like to proudly display the images that received recognition!
This girl arrived for her one year session and brought a bag full of smiles with her! Mila has an adorable little crinkled-nose smile when she decides to really crank the cuteness up a notch and it totally works for her. We began the session with some sweet family photos and then headed inside for her cake smash session.
Her mama had told me that she would be wearing a gold and black shirt, so I pulled together some cute gold pom poms on a white backdrop for something simple, yet fun. I introduced some over sized gold confetti and she just thought it was the best stuff to chew on! Quick outfit change and we moved onto the cake & smashing part of the session. Her mama picked this gorgeous teal cake up from Publix and I was so tempted to eat it because they make the BEST cakes. Mila stuck her finger in it but wasn't sure what to do with it until her mama tore a little chunk off to give her a sample. After that, Mila dug in and managed to get her fists in her mouth, enjoying it immensely! She has so much personality and her little icing covered hands and face are just priceless.
I was honored when this sweet baby girl's mother reached out to me in the months ahead of her arrival to schedule a newborn session. Her mother and I have known each other since middle school and it is always such a blessing to see the transformation of my peers into parents.
I adore this little lace bonnet I purchased for her session, as well as the textured purple blanket. I found a lovely spot in their home to set up my backdrop that had lots of gorgeous light filtering in through the windows. I really should have gotten a pull back for some behind the scenes of what all goes into creating these beautiful shots. Packing up all my equipment, throws, props, etc. isn't easy, but I do love going to the homes of new parents to make the entire process easier on them.
The rolls, the little toes, the mouth-open slumber...I just love it all!
Jason & Emily have been together for years and are finally tying the knot in July! We squeezed in a quick engagement session on an empty lot in the neighborhood, which ended up making a stellar last minute location! They are a relaxed and fun couple, which you can totally tell from their session! They're planning a July wedding in her home state of Ohio and I'm so looking forward to celebrating with them and photographing their special day!
Pinwheels & balloons...happy 1st birthday to this sweet little guy! Reid was slow to start the actual smash portion of his portrait session, but he eventually got the hang of it! For most of my cake smash sessions, this is the first real opportunity they've had to dig into this much sugar and I guess its intimidating!
Messy face, fingers, toes, & floor adds up to a successful cake smashing.
Mandy and Jeff had a beautiful intimate winter wedding that was held in her parent's back yard. They incorporated fresh pine garlands and Christmas lights to create an elegant candlelit atmosphere. Since the ceremony was held outdoors on the back patio, they provided blankets for their guests to bundle up in, which I thought was a clever touch!
The ceremony was officiated by a close friend of the groom and they were surrounded by their closest family and friends. Mandy was an absolutely stunning bride and it was such a joy to witness their love and the beginning of their journey through life together!
We had a gorgeous fall evening yesterday for the Williamson family's photo session. God was gracious to have the tornado warning and heavy storm pass through the day before. Their littles were so full of energy and are just too cute. The kids' first language is German (Mama is from Germany!) and they were kind to put up with my silly remarks that are probably barely even slightly funny in English. Haha! Many thanks to the folks of Shady Oaks farm, who Linda is friends with, for allowing us to enjoy the Autumn evening on their gorgeous property spoiling their horses with apples and carrots! One of my favorite family sessions to date!
I'd like to share a personal story with you.
This boy. Oh goodness. He belongs to me and is the sweetest, most content little guy. But after an entire Fall of rainfall, gloomy weather, and coming down with a stubborn cold (resulting in an ear infection) while cutting 3 molars at once, he just wasn't bringing his best to this intricately designed styled birthday shoot I planned for him!
After waiting for over a month for the skies to clear, ground to dry, and this guy to get better, I had run out of opportunities to squeeze in my birthday boy's session before his big Circus birthday party just days out.
So, I packed up my three little boys and headed to an open field to capture what was sure to be an adorable setup. I had a plan, since I was wrangling all three solo (Daddy was at work). I gave my big boys jobs. My 4 year old was to video record his baby brother during the session (lots of airplanes in the sky, people walking by, and grass covered shoes) and my 2 year old was to click the shutter remote trigger for my backup camera mounted to a tripod (the tripod didn't stay put). And my 1 year old was supposed to strike his handsome smile, growl with the stuffed lions, and just rock his photo shoot.
Well. This is how it went:
Everything how I had envisioned it. Except that precious boy was nothing but tears. So, the session didn't go as planned. But I still adore these images of him. These images capture my memories of everything that transpired to create this. Years from now, I'll be able to recall all those little details that likely would have slipped my mind because I created moments and captured them.
And, as a side note, the evening was highlighted on our way home when a deer leaped out in front of our van, which ended up being a total loss!
Grant's first birthday party was a lot of fun! I'd like to share a few snapshots from the day! I spent hours making this Month by Month Ferris Wheel out of hula hoops and wooden dowels along with tons of other fun details.
Ethan just turned one! He is just 8 days older than my baby boy (I photographed his newborn session just days before my little man arrived!), and it's hard to believe that a year has already passed. This little guy already has his Mom & Dad chasing him on foot! He's been walking exclusively for well over a month and had the cutest little "cowboy" walk you ever did see. He loves cars (can you tell?) and food and I think might be *more* laid back and easy going than his parents (is that even possible?!).
Ethan, it's been a treasure watching you grow over the past year, even if it's been at a bit of a distance! <3
I had the pleasure to meet the Paul family at their farm, which made a beautiful backdrop for their family portraits. It was a bit of a drive south from my home base in Peachtree City, but was totally worth it! There was discussion of what to do if the weather didn't hold out for us Friday evening. Fortunately, there was a 6 hour break in the rain showers that just so happened to fall within the time frame of our session. We couldn't have asked for a prettier Fall evening. This seems to be a common theme for my sessions lately--God is good!
We started off in the back yard with the pups, who didn't really seem interested in a photo shoot at all. I utilized my Photoshop skills and pieced together several photos for the perfect shot---I even caught a smile from one of the dogs! ;)
Their sweet little 5 month old daughter loves tickles from her Mama and Mr. Owl. Our session wrapped up pretty close to her bed time (Daylight Savings isn't easy on any of us!), but I captured so many little smiles & expressions out of her before she decided to call it a night! I just love how the sunlight filtered through the trees that over looked the cow pastures. The Paul family & scenery was just picture perfect.
Just wanted to share a personal post to highlight one of my family's favorite things: dressing up for Halloween! My husband is *slightly* excited about the upcoming release of the newest Star Wars, so we decided to do a Star Wars themed family costumes. I always have fun creating and making the costumes. Much to my husband's dismay, sometimes it involves construction paper.
This year, I managed to pull most of our costumes together from Better Way Bargains, a local thrift store that benefits a local ministry. The day I shopped (it *may* have been the week before Halloween!) all clothing happened to be $1, which was an awesome deal! Construction paper wasn't involved this year, but tinfoil and foam sheets were! I made my baby boy's hat out of a trick-or-treat bag that was a frog head...just turned it inside out and cut out some Yoda-shaped ears!
Often times, a photographer struggles to find time and energy to capture moments in their own life. I really challenge myself to keep up with all the memories we make together with our boys and have my camera in tow, but also try to make sure I am a part of the moment. Most of the time, Mama doesn't make it into the frame except for a snap or two. I look through pictures from when my oldest was toddling around and can actually visualize clicking the shutter. The images really do bring back those memories, which is what motivated me to grow and learn as a photographer in the first place!