Monthly Archives: May 2010

Meg and Mark: engaged and in LA

“You want to take us to LA for the weekend, all expenses paid?! Sure we’ll shoot your road trip engagement session!”, was my first response when Meg and Mark asked for what they called a “favor” (we called it “awesome”).

So we packed up the car and headed off to our great adventure!

We planned out a few different locations to shoot at and stops along the way (working around Meg’s job interview and they wedding they were attending that weekend) but other than a few vague plans, we were up for anything!

That “anything” included… staying in a new place that we were all a little iffy about (it ended up being awesome), almost getting thrown out of the Farmers Market…

…making our way through crack town, nearly breaking Meg’s ankle (I don’t think she signed up for that part)….

(2 seconds before the ankle injury… that curb that looks non-existent is actually huge and it’s there just to trick you!)

…. and of course making a pee stop at the homeless men’s bathroom that we waited for over 30 min. to use (when you gotta go, you gotta go…whether you’re in the middle of downtown LA or not!).

Throughout all our minor mishaps, we had such a fantabulous time!

We not only got the chance to capture Meg and Mark in what we now know is their future home since Meg got the job (no, they’re not moving to crack town), but we also had the opportunity to explore LA with our cameras in hand along with people who were up to do pretty much anything for a good shot!

Thank you Meg and Mark for taking our instructions seriously when we told you to be creative with your engagement session!

You guys definitely think outside the box and we love it!

We had a blast hanging out with you both (as usual) and we are so glad you chose us to be your photographers so we get to be the lucky ones to go through these amazing experiences with you.  We can’t wait to see you on your big day! 🙂

Click to see the rest of Mark & Meg’s LA engagement session!

Sarah’s AZ trip senior session!

Sarah and her mom Sandy have seen us do enough work for the major events in the lives of their many family members that when the time came for Sarah to get her senior pictures done, they were ready for Radiant!

So they flew into Phoenix from their home in Northern California for a day of photo fun!

And fun it was!  Sarah couldn’t have been a better model!  She was so easy to hang out with that it kept the whole feeling of the session relaxed.

She was even willing to get a little silly with us…

…maybe she didn’t realize we’d actually pick some of those photos to go online for the whole world to see! Ha ha, sorry Sarah!

Sarah has a major passion for photography and it was so much fun for us to get to take pictures of someone who actually knew what we were doing and was interested in WHY we were doing it!

I’m sure she was especially wondering about the “why” when we asked her to do things that would cause even the most trusting people to doubt us!  Like when we asked her to lean up against a dirty wall….

… or told her to make faces like “if you were taking pics with your friends”.

She did a great job following those directions!

Amidst all the techie talk about cameras (which I’m sure was making her mom shudder as she racked up dollar signs in her brain), I managed to get in a few photos of Sarah holding Scottie’s camera.

(This one was taken as a joke about what kind of poses we could come up with to make her look like a “serious, professional photographer”.  Also a photo that she probably didn’t expect to see end up on the blog… oops! Ha ha).

We even did the oh so dreaded “taking a picture of someone taking a picture of you” shot.  I’m usually against things with so much cheesiness, but I actually had an idea to do it in a way that would look cool and I have to say that I do like the resulting photo!

Maybe I just need to get over myself and chance it with the cheese from time to time!  Next time, maybe I’ll even make her say “cheese” when we take the pictures!

We love capturing people doing the things they love so we always encourage all our clients to bring props that showcase their personalities.  Of course the props also help people slip into their own little worlds of things that make them happy, which helps distract them from the awkwardness that many of them feel when having their picture taken!

(Obviously, Sarah has nothing to feel awkward about… she’s beautiful and she poses like a pro!).

Sarah chose 2 props… one was her soccer ball.

This made us of course joke about all the team pics we’ve both taken over the years since I (Breanna) played soccer for most of my life as well.  We thought about having her get on one knee while holding the ball on her hip, just so she could put it side by side with a team photo of her when she was little, but our better judgment prevailed when it came to that particular cheesy picture. 😉

Instead, we tried to come up with some that were a little bit different.  Including her idea of just completely blocking her face with the ball.

I told you she was fun, who else would think to hide their face during a photo session?!

So after the soccer fun and the photography practice, we finally stopped talking and laughing long enough (Scottie had to say my name like 3 times to snap me out of my long conversation with Sarah while we were shooting… what can I say, I liked hanging out with her!) to get a few photos of her chilling and reading her Bible.

We thought it was awesome that her faith is such a big part of her life that when she thought about the things that represent her… the Bible was one of them.  You don’t see a lot of teens (or actually people of any age) like that!

So thanks to Sarah, her mom, and grandma for being so wonderful that you were a total lift to our day!  We get very bogged down by all the work we do on our computers at home, so it was lovely to have the opportunity to not only get out of the house to do a different kind of work, but to enjoy our time doing it so much that it didn’t even feel like work!  It felt more like hanging out with friends!  Thanks for coming all the way to Phoenix to see us.  We hope that after seeing the resulting pictures, you’ll be very happy you made the trip! 🙂

Click to see the rest of Sarah’s Phoenix, AZ senior portraits.

Felipa and Chris are together again and married!

Out of all the weddings we’ve shot now, Felipa and Chris have one of the coolest stories I’ve heard yet. It’s one of those stories that when told in full detail makes people go “no way!”.

It all started with a little girl named Brianna.

I take that back, it started before Brianna but she’s the reason this story is so great.  I don’t have all the specifics here so I’m going to summarize a lot to hopefully avoid getting it wrong! Chris and Felipa met in 2001 and as the pastor at their wedding put it they “had a little romance” and then Brianna was born.

They went their separate ways for awhile but then began having a little bit of contact so that Chris (and his family) could spend some time with his daughter.  They went through a lot during this time period and they grew in ways that neither of them expected.

In fact, things changed so much that in the summer of 2009 they realized they each had a new person to get to know!

They began dating, were engaged around Christmas, and were married in the spring!

So now, the 3 of them get to live together and have a reunited family.

When the pastor told this story at their wedding, he spoke a lot about forgiveness and restoration and it was enough to make anyone tear up (even a certain photographer… or 2… but I’m not sure if Scottie would admit to it!).

Needless to say, it was a beautiful ceremony and it will definitely continue to stand out to me as one of my favorites.

The reception was the perfect follow up to such a great ceremony, with brilliant red roses to decorate… …and a stunning bride to complete it!

(Seriously, you can’t get a smile better than that one!)

Another really beautiful part to Chris and Felipa’s story is the amount of support they received throughout all of this by their friends and family.

There was such a bonding and camaraderie that we saw carried through the entire day between everyone.  It would be apparent to even the most distant observer that Brianna really did bring this entire group of people together and that none of them are planning on going anywhere any time soon. 

The tears and the hugs were endless the entire night (which is a rare thing to see in groomsmen… but we saw it here)!

You would think that being around a group this tight knit, would make anyone else feel like an outsider, but that was the thing that really surprised us… they made US feel like a part of the family too!  And we’re just a couple of measly old photographers (hired help if you will)!

Their friends and family alike spent the night with their arms around us (literally), telling us stories about their loved ones (getting emotional at the good parts of course), and genuinely inviting us in to the deeper parts of their lives.

How many parties have you been to where you feel completely loved and accepted by everyone because they go out of their way to make you feel important… even though the entire day is all about the importance of THEM and you have nothing to do with it?!

I’m going to guess that very few people have had the opportunity to have an experience like that and we feel very blessed to be one of the lucky ones.  I am so happy to know that Brianna will get to grow up being around so many people who are that loving.

How great is it to have such a beautiful community to raise a child in?  We couldn’t be happier for this new little family.

(Fan us on Facebook so you can tag yourselves in some of these photos!)

So Felipa and Chris, God bless you as you take on the major endeavor of learning how to live life together as a family and as you adjust to all the changes that are bound to come your way.

I’m sure there will be a lot of challenges to face as you learn to grow together and parent together, but I know you guys have the kind of support you need to get through anything and that it will be such an incredibly wonderful process for the two of you.   I hope you enjoy every single part through and through and that you have a blast doing all of it together!

Congratulations on finding each other again, I hope you guys stay best friends and teammates forever. 🙂

Click to see the rest of Felipa and Chris’ wedding photos.

FREE class on how to use Facebook for your business!

So you have a Facebook page for your business… now what?!
If you’ve made a business page because everyone told you to, and now you have no idea what to do with it… come get some FREE help from Scottie and Breanna of Radiant Photography!

Yes, we will be like everyone else and tell you how important it is to use social networking for your business, but unlike everyone else we will also tell you HOW to use it!!

The meeting we’re speaking at is hosted by the Phoenix SMUG (Smug Mug User Group). SMUG is open to everyone who loves photography. So whether you have a business or you just want to learn how to share your photos on Facebook more effectively… we are personally inviting you to come!

Phoenix SMUG
Wed, May 19th, 2010 | 6:30-9:00PM
Bonneville Phoenix
7740 N. 16 Street
Phoenix, AZ 85020

Email us if you have any questions:

In case you’re STILL not convinced to come, here are some of the other perks of attending (thanks to James VanderWeide for taking these photos at our last class!) If you come to a Radiant class, there are all kinds of sights to see.  If you’re lucky you’ll get to witness Scottie…

…pegging unsuspecting victims in the leg with baseballs.

…teaching secret Kung Fu Ninja moves…

(the sitting down AND the standing up kind!)…

…taking random breaks to practice his mad dunking skills (you know, in case this whole photography thing doesn’t pan out!)…

…discussing the problem areas of his skin…  (there’s one here…

…and oh, it looks like there’s another one here)…

…and of course, who would want to miss a big giant white guy’s attempt at rapping!

Breanna puts on quite a show as well.  Often when teaching you can find her…

…pretending like she’s not ready to throw her computer through a wall…

… looking very worried that her gigantic husband might topple over on her…

…standing around doing nothing while Scottie does all the hard work…

…and sometimes she’s just sleeping.

Come to our class… you never know what you’ll catch us doing this time! (By the way, thanks for putting up with our cheesy attempt at captions!)

Much Love,
Scottie & Breanna

Gina and Jake’s “Southwestern Experience” Engagement Session!

We’ve been to enough weddings with Gina there that it’s about time we got to take some pictures of HER!

Gina works at one of the venues we shoot at regularly so she’s had the opportunity to see Scottie and Breanna (that would be us!) in action plenty of times through sun, rain, wind, snow… well OK not snow… but if it did snow in AZ, she’d see us working hard in it!

Going through a wedding with someone is a bonding experience, no matter what your role in it is!  And now that we’ve been through so many with Gina, we feel like we’re old friends!

So we were very privileged when we got to meet her fiance Jake and when they asked us to be their wedding photographers!

So now Gina is not only one of our biggest cheerleaders and our friend, but she’s now an official Radiant Bride!

Of course that’s a double benefit for us since part of her job is sharing a list of preferred vendors with the brides getting married at the venue she works at.  So when she tells brides that she likes Radiant Photography enough to use us for her OWN wedding, people listen! Thanks Gina!

It was great watching Gina and Jake interact together.

He definitely knows how to make her laugh…

… and laugh….

… and laugh!

Judging by how many little phrases and sayings there are about how great laughter is… and by how many times I hear marriage advice in speeches at weddings that talk about the importance of laughing together, I’d say that this a great start to their life together!

She looks so happy when she’s with him!

I guess I should re-word that to say that they BOTH look so happy together!

Gina and Jake love water in pictures and since you can’t go wrong when you combine a peaceful lake with beautiful scenic views, we decided to head up to Canyon Lake for their engagement session.

We stopped at a little old west town (Tortilla Flats) along the way (because how could we not?!).

(Why wouldn’t there be a giant wooden Indian statue behind them?!).

When you’re an Arizona native like myself (Breanna), you tend to make a lot of jokes about Kokopellis (for all you Northerners out there, those are symbols of a Native American fertility deity… that are sold in every gift shop in town), saguaros (mostly regarding how to pronounce it), and turquoise jewelry.

(the Cardinals poster definitely detracts from the old west feel… as does the modern money on the walls and the Sharpies that were used to mark them up!)

But despite our jokes, we understand that these are the things that make our state unique and that produce stunning photos (and Clint Eastwood movies) for the rest of the world to enjoy.

(There, that one looks a little more like it was taken in an old saloon!)

So taking pride in our state, it’s nice for us to get a chance to be a part of producing some of these stunning photos to showcase our natural beauty for all to see.  So here are some of our “we love Arizona” photos:

(We tried to get some photos of that beautiful Arizona sunset but the mountains were blocking it a little too much, so this is the best we could do.  Wide open skies definitely say Arizona all by themselves anyways!)

Thanks Gina and Jake for putting some creativity into selecting your photo location and for trusting that we were up to the challenge of shooting something totally different than we’re used to!

You guys did a great job exploring with us and being flexible and we hope you’re MORE than ecstatic about the results!!

Gina, we can’t wait to see you at a wedding wearing a wedding dress, rather than your work clothes for once! 😉

Click to see the rest of Gina and Jake’s Southwestern experience engagement session!