Wedding Photography

In July I had the honour of being the photographer for Mike and Melissa’s Wedding. I have to admit that I was extremely nervous about this. If you have been following my blog you know that my photography subject matter is always places, things, landscapes and the odd animal. I do not take pictures of people.

In the past I have been asked to do engagement photos. However, I had always declined. I do not take pictures of people.

I do not take pictures of people because I find it very stressful in positioning, finding poses, and keeping those involved happy during the time consuming process of getting that perfect shot! Wedding photos and engagement photos are those very special moments in life that couples keep forever. My biggest fear– I will disappoint. Therefore I do not take pictures of people.

I do not take pictures of people… until July 25, 2015.

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Melissa approached me the week before the wedding with her photographer concerns. She indicated that if no one was designated to take pictures the couple’s memories may only be pictures from camera phones. Melissa’s mother, a talented photographer, had offered to take pictures. However, she is the mother-of-the-bride! She has enough to worry about never mind pictures. With these things in mind I agreed to my first wedding shoot.

The week leading up I was all over Pinterest finding poses and tips from other wedding photographers. I also played with my carmera settings a lot more than I had done in the past. The night before I had a hard time sleeping. The fear of disappointment looming over my head.

I am happy to say that everything turned out great and am glad I did this for a friend! The couple was very easy-going. They were open to some of my suggestions for poses and locations. However, they also had many of their own ideas of shots they wanted to have which helped me a lot. And, they are quite photogenic! This made my job easier.

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Mike and Melissa’s Wedding was a great experience from a photographer’s standpoint. Now, I am more likely to say yes to taking pictures of people in the future– but they would have to be as relaxed as this couple was.

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Food Photography Tips

From one beginner to another…??

While making Zucchini Muffins I decided to work on my food photography skills. Here are a few tips and tricks I tried.

  1. Buy extra ingredients IMG_5346

The photos show way more eggs and fruit than I would need to make this recipe. I added more food for visual appeal; to capture repeating patterns and play with shadows.

  1. Take way too many pictures

The pictures that appear on my blog are a small fraction of the number I took. I actually took over 350 pictures that day! I mostly took pictures of the same things but from different angles and under different lighting.

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  1. Play with camera settings

Throughout the day I tried different settings (close-up, landscape, portrait, etc.) and therefore got better shots depending on the situation. It is hard to really tell if the photo is what you like until it is loaded onto the computer. Therefore it is better to experiment with different settings and delete unwanted pictures later.

  1. Play with lighting

Half of the pictures I took inside my kitchen. There I played with the blinds; letting in different amounts of light depending on the details in the food I was trying to capture. I also set up another table outside! There I had complete natural light. Most of the food photos from my blog are taken outside.

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  1. DO NOT USE A FLASH

You will lose the details in the food! I would have lost the texture of the blueberries and the grains in the zucchini. Go back to point 4 for lighting ideas.

  1. Give yourself lots of time

It took me over 3 hours to make muffins! I wanted to capture each part of the process and then decide later if I was going to use the shot or not. As I mentioned earlier, I took some photos inside, but the best ones were taken outside. It took a lot of time to bring out certain foods, snap the photos, and then bring them back in the house. However, in the end I was glad I had the outdoor set-up.

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I started taking photographs of food last summer. My guide and inspiration was this blog post from Averie Cooks: http://www.averiecooks.com/2011/08/food-light-photography-tips-from-diane-cu.html

For Zucchini Muffin recipe click here— don’t worry, it will not take 3 hours to make!

Zucchini Muffins

PicMonkey Collagerecipe I got this recipe a few years ago from my friend Amanda. She had offered me some zucchini loaf at her place. After I tried some I knew I just had to have the recipe! I have made some changes to turn the loaf into muffins for easy lunches and sharing! So far this summer I have made at least 6 dozen muffins from all the zucchini in my garden–and I will probably make 6 dozen more. They freeze fairly well. Many friends and relatives have been asking for the recipe, so here it is:

Prep Time: 20 minutes     Bake Time: 30 minutes  Yield: 24 muffins
Ingredients:
3 eggsIMG_5436
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups fresh grated zucchini

3/4 cup tapioca flour
3/4 cup white rice flour
3/4 cup brown rice flour (original recipe calls for sorghum flour, but I can never find this type of flour in the store!)
1/4 cup cornstarch (original recipe calls for 3/4 cup arrowroot powder)
1/2 tsp. saltIMG_5462
1 tbsp. xantham gum
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tbsp. cinnamon

Fresh fruit: blueberries and raspberries

Directions:

  1. Preheat to 350°F
  2. Mix wet ingredients together: beat the eggs, and then add in the sugar, oil, applesauce, and vanilla. Once well blended together add zucchini.
  3. In a separate bowl mix the rest of the dry ingredients together, and gradually add to the wet while stirring. Keep stirring until all the flour is incorporated and you have a smooth texture.
  4. Prepare muffin tin with muffin papers. I tend not to grease the tin for this recipe. If you would like to I suggest using coconut oil.
  5. Place a couple of blueberries at the bottom of each muffin paper.
  6. Fill muffin papers as desired but it is important to note that they will rise a lot in the oven! To make 24 muffins I fill each muffin paper halfway with batter.
  7. Place a few more blueberries on top of each muffin as well as one raspberry
  8. Bake for 30 minutes. Use the “sticky knife” test to check if they are done.
  9. Allow to cool and enjoy!

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