Trinity Overlook Park Portrait

Bishop Arts District Engagement | Dallas, TX | Ashley + Tim

I was thrilled when Ashley and Tim told me they were interested in having their engagement session done in my hometown of Dallas, TX and even more ecstatic when they picked the shooting itinerary that I secretly was the most excited about: a romp around the Bishop Arts District in Oak Cliff.  I’d been wanting to photograph a Bishop Arts District engagement session for years because of it’s quaint shops and bright colors and textures.  I had a feeling that it was going to be fun, urban and colorful and it totally paid off.  I always like to start sessions off with an adult beverage and this one was no different.  Unfortunately, our original plan was to meet at the uber colorful and outdoor space of the Foundry but I arrived to discover it was closed for a special event.  Womp, womp.

Instead, we ended up at the beginning of the district at Parker Barrows, which had fantastic open windows, local beers on draft, and cool subway tile.  We wandered our way through the district, stopping when inspiration struck and sampling chocolate (a must do!) at Dude, Sweet Chocolate, where the employee went above and beyond to let us sample almost everything in the shop.

We finished up at the Old Kemp House where local artist Eric Mancini has given it his colorful make-over and created a work of art.  There was a swing!   Finally, we drove over to the nearby Trinity Overlook Park to capture some golden hour goodness and the Dallas skyline.

No trip of mine to Dallas ever goes without a stop at Fireside Pies for dinner, usually in the company of my mom and her sisters.  My aunts weren’t available but Ashley and Tim accepted my invitation and we had an awesome evening over amazing pizza and great wine!

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Austin Family Portraits

Austin Family Portaits | The Hilder Family

Sometimes the stars align and shit just works out.

The day before I was set to fly to Austin to photograph Lisa and Michael’s Mercury Hall wedding an old friend and former co-worker reached out to me on facebook, asking when the next time I was coming to town was going to be.  They wanted family portraits while their youngest, Ranger, was still a roly-poly mess of adorable babyness.  Conveniently, I was basically en route and we scrambled together to find a time to meet while I was there.  When the world feels totally random and chaotic, there’s a sort of beautiful poetry in everything coming together just like that.  I guess that’s fate.  I am so thrilled I was able to see Stephen after so many years (10?!?) and meet his amazing rockstar wife and accommodate their request some awesome Austin family portraits for their family.  I had a blast!  Their eldest son, Maverick, is a spitfire of spunk, sass and hilarity.  He was pure entertainment the entire morning: hooting like an owl, spraying like a skunk, and generally just strutting his stuff.  When the internet has me feeling dismayed and sorrowful, all it takes is a few glances at the photos of this family to make me smile.

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Trois Estate Wedding

An Enchanted Rock Trois Estate Wedding | Aaron + Ellen

Nestled in the shrubs and mesquite trees of central Texas, just past the vast pink granite domes that make up Enchanted Rock State Park is a bed and breakfast that is EVERYTHING a traveler looking for a quite respite wants in their bed and breakfast.  The Trois Estate is quiet and picturesque; it’s an eclectic mix of quaint Southwest, comfort, and the downright bizarre, all the while surrounded by the expansive beauty that this part of the Texas hill country has to offer.  The estate’s cathedral is a sight to be seen, with an antique fireplace and wooden pews underground, but what’s really interesting is the attached hidden heated grotto, perfect for a midnight skinny-dip.  You didn’t get that idea from me!

The resort offers an intimate, relaxing experience in one of the most beautiful parts of Texas and I can’t imagine a more perfect place for Aaron and Ellen to wed at.  Aaron has been a prolific climber for as long as I’ve known him (which is a long time) and Ellen is a climbing convert and an avid trail runner.  They were seeking an cozy private venue for a small wedding and the Trois Estate was the perfect location.  Most of the guests were able to stay on-site (we had the run of the place).  The ceremony was held in an enclosed tree-filled outdoor patio, a cocktail hour on an upper outdoor deck overlooking the landscape as the sun set and the dinner in a private interior dining room filled with large overbearing furniture filled with Texas charm.  It was a dream venue to photograph at as well and my only regret is that I had such a busy weekend (three weddings in Texas in three days!) that I wasn’t able to sincerely enjoy the awesome that this quiet location and landscape had to provide.

The wedding was simple and absolutely reflective of Aaron and Ellen and their personalities.  It was attended by immediate family and the closest of friends only and followed up with an amazing multi-course BBQ meal from Chef Jay and his incredible staff at Chef Jay Events.   I can imagine a more beautiful, touching and poignant way to celebrate the love of two people I hold dear and I’m honored to have been able to photograph their day.

Here’s a few of my favorite frames from their Trois Estate wedding.

Venue: Trois Estate at Enchanted Rock | Officiant: Rob Lohmeyer | Catering: Chef Jay Events | Bride’s Dress: Badgley Mischka | Groom’s Attire: Joseph Abboud | Hair and Make-Up: Brandy Pate of Jay and Co | Rentals: Whim Rentals

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Winspear Opera House Engagement

Winspear Opera House Engagement | Whitney + Richard | Sneak Peek

These two are quite the pair.  Self described as “reversed” from the norm, Whitney wanted nothing to do with engagement photos… at first.  Two days later, she’s posting on her facebook about how excited she is to see them.  Apparently, I’m fun to hang out with but they are the real fun: Whitney and Richard will jumping at the chance to climb, roll, run, and acrobat through their two hour session, which started out with drinks at The Mansion Bar, in The Mansion at Turtle Creek, a location significantly fancier than the three of us put together.  I was immediately in love with both of them and I can’t wait to force them to be my new Dallas friends.

Until I’m done, here’s a few images to hold you over from their awesome Dallas Winspear Opera House engagement session.

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San Antonio Wedding Photographer

San Antonio Wedding Photographer | Los Patios | Jimmy plus Karlie

I’ve known Jimmy his entire life.  He’s been in heaps of trouble with my brother on multiple occasions.  I’m pretty sure that my mother claims that Jimmy, BC and the two ushers from the wedding, Teddy and Josh, once broke her couch.  They are rabble rousers, party animals and dancing fools with veritable hearts of gold – all three of those boys.  I’m so honored that Jimmy and his bride to be, Karlie, choose me as their wedding photographer.  I can’t imagine a better honor than photographing the wedding of my brother’s best friend.

Jimmy has grown into such a handsome young man and Karlie is as sweet as can be.  They picked an absolutely amazing venue for their wedding: an oasis of calm, lush greenery in the middle of San Antonio.  She completed it with adorable DIY details; all the flowers, table arrangements and decor (including the cake toppers) were designed and created by Karlie herself.

The dance party was epic (especially since my own mother was there).  If you ever wanted proof that mad dancing skills runs in the family, look no farther than Jimmy and Karlie’s wedding album.  There was a dancing recessional at the end of the ceremony, Shiner on tap, midnight waffles, and a literal FIGHT for both the garter and bouquet.

Thank you Jimmy and Karlie for choosing me to be your San Antonio Wedding Photographer.

Your wedding was full of win and awesome.  Your wedding was so full of win and awesome that there are way too many photos in this post, but I couldn’t bear to leave any of my favorites out.  Did I mention DANCING RECESSIONAL?!  

I would really prefer it if ALL my couples would henceforth have a dancing recessional.  It’s my new favorite thing.

Venue, Catering and Day of Coordination: Los Patios | Cake: Meemo’s Bakery | Flowers: Travis Wholesale | Dress: Wedding Dress Bee

San Antonio Photo Booth | Jimmy plus Karlie

Jimmy and Karlie wanted a party for their wedding and you know that I’m a firm believer that no party is a true party without a photo booth.  As such, I shipped all the gear down to San Antonio for their beautiful wedding at Los Patios.  Although I’m still working on their wedding photos, here’s a few of the photo booth photos from the evening.

If you were a guest at Jimmy and Karlie’s wedding, you may view the entire gallery via this link.  As always, I will leave a permanent link over on the 2014 Photo Booth page.

Crossfit Photography, Crossfit Promo Photos, Crossfit Texas, Austin Commercial Photography

Austin Freelance Photographer | CrossFit Texas Sneak Peek

I’m so excited for my friends Liana and Terry Collie!  They are following their dreams and just bought a gym after their own passion: CrossFit Texas in Pflugerville.  Since I was traveling all the way to Texas to shoot a San Antonio Wedding a few weeks ago, they requested that I make a stop in Austin to help with new marketing photos for their small business.  Here’s a sneak peek of what’s to come!  Congrats to my friends, whose awesomeness knows no bounds.

SXSW 2014 Preview

I’m back in Texas to photograph for SXSW for the 2nd year in a row.  I know what’s coming for me: loads of amazing new music, beer, and very little sleep.  It’s an awesome time and it all starts this Saturday.

I’ve been attempting to prepare myself by drinking a lot and pre-listening to the SXSW “Four on the Floor” Preview Lists.  Here are a couple of acts I discovered on there that I’m super excited to see:

  • I became super obsessed with Juliette Ashby’s voice the moment I heard the first song.  Her blend of R&B, Reggae and Neo-Soul isn’t something I would have ever pegged myself for being attracted to, but I’m hooked.

  • The Mighty Oaks may be confused since they are playing Americana-Folk but hail from Berlin, Germany but I’m not confused about how awesome their music is.

  • Ski Lodge: pop fun for a bluebird powder day.  Right up my alley.

  • Pompeya is a pop blend of the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s.

  • Shakey Graves has been making headlines outside of his hometown of Austin, TX: headlines loud enough that his reputation precedes him and he’s now on my must-see list for the week.

  • Elle King mades waves last year at SXSW but I unfortunately missed catching one of her shows.  I will not make the same mistake again this year!

My Top SXSW Acts: #4

My favorite new artists from SXSW 2013

#4: Reignwolf

Reignwolf, SXSW, Mother's Anger, Jordan Cook, Stage on Sixth

Jordan Cook, otherwise known as Reignwolf, is a sweaty slobbering mess in a physical sense.  Musically, however, he’s a guitar virtuoso.  Despite the Texas heat, he’s wearing a leather jacket and a beanie, and while switching in between the slide and electric guitars and simultaneously stomping on a kick drum, his combat boots get tangled in cords, microphone stands get knocked over, and, in general, things are delightfully and perfectly off kilter.  There’s a certain romance to the dark fiery presentation going on and you can’t help but think, “Damn, this is some sexy shit.”  Without a doubt, it’s the fierce bluesy rock guitar licks that lure you in because there is a bonafide lake of sweat pouring down his face.

Cook, who grew up in Canada, began playing the guitar when he was two and was playing in bars by the age of 5.  By the age of nine, he was on tour with a band made up of elementary school kids.  Today, he’s working on an album and he’s the best guitarist you’ve never heard of.  Go see his show, if you can find one, and expect things to get a little messy.

Mother's Anger, Reignwolf, Jordan Cook, SXSW, concert photography, reno tahoe concert photography

Previously in my SXSW wrap-up:

Intro to SXSW

#12: Devendra Banhart

#11: PHOX

#10: Social Studies

#9: Guards

#8: Zeale

#7: Red Baraat

#6: Josh Ritter

#5: Pickwick