Rebecca Clair Photography

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Posts tagged couples photography
In This Business Together: Emilee and Anthony’s Relaxed In-Home Headshot Session {Kansas City Small Business Photography}
 Kansas City lifestyle photographer in home couples session cuddling in the kitchen with coffee engagement photos black and white photo

I really love getting to connect with other creative entrepreneurs in my area. I feel inspired by the lovely things they create and by their tenacity in pursuing work that brings them joy.

Emilee is one of those creative entrepreneurs. Though she is a photographer herself, she recently branched out into a new business venture as well, starting a wedding décor rental company with her husband Tony. As newlyweds themselves, they remember what it felt like to plan a wedding, recalling both the excitement and the stress of managing all the details and balancing a budget. As they were planning their wedding, Emilee noticed that many brides chose the same few weddings themes and purchased similar decorations. After the wedding, they then had to either sell or store those decorations. Now that Emiliee is married and settling into a new home with Tony, her recent experience with wedding planning led her to start Wedding Decor & More, a company that rents wedding décor to brides to help them save time, money, and hassle in the wedding planning process.

I loved hearing how this new business was fueled by Emilee and Tony’s own lives and experiences. I think one thing I’m learning in this adventure of running my own business is that business and my personal life aren’t as starkly separate as I used to think they needed to be. I’m realizing that who we are and the things we love really do influence the work we pursue and HOW we pursue that work.

And so my session with these two was less about what they do with their business and the products they offer and more about who they are and the way they love each other. It was about the way Tony makes Emilee laugh (something she loves about him!) and the way he supports her in every crazy idea she has, including supporting her in running two businesses. It was about how Emilee is so energetic and upbeat (which is the first thing that attracted Tony to her when they met working together at a restaurant) and hard-working. It was about how comfortable they feel together, content to relax in their home with one another and their three dogs. Doing their session at home, cuddling on the couch, relaxing in the kitchen, and sitting with their dogs, seemed to fit these two and the relaxed, cheerful demeanor they offer in all they do, including in this new business.

I can’t wait to see these in action on their new website (coming soon!). In the meantime, you can find out more about Wedding Décor & More on Facebook.  

Community Over Competition: A Photographers Play Date {Kansas City Couples Photography}
 Couples session in Kansas City west bottoms couples photography hair blowing

“Community over competition.”

I first heard this slogan (which originates from the Rising Tide Society) at the Inspired Story Conference in Dallas last summer, when I gathered with women photographers from around the country for a weekend of learning, creating, and listening to one another’s stories. Every photographer who spoke at the conference shared their knowledge and stories candidly and generously. I was blessed and challenged as much by their humble attitude as their words. My experience that weekend at the conference pushed the value of “community over competition” deep into my heart.

As my own knowledge and experience slowly grows, I try to remember the gift that that those photographers were (and still are) to me as I learn this business of photography. And like them, I strive to share what I know just as generously, whether it’s sharing a particularly lovely location I’ve found or passing on client questionnaires I’ve created. Although this can be a competitive business, with dozens of photographers clamoring for the same clients, I believe that the competition doesn’t need to define my interactions with other local photographers and that forming positive relationships with other area photographers can only help all of us grow stronger in our art and business.

I’m grateful that there are other local photographers that feel the same, including Jen Williams and Jordan Friend. A couple weeks ago, Jen and Jordan organized a play date for some local photographers in the West Bottoms and I had the privilege of joining them. They had recruited some couples and singles to model for us and we spent a couple hours that afternoon, wandering the area, taking photos and getting to know one another. I had never been to the West Bottoms before and the urban environment definitely pushed me outside of my comfort zone. The harsh mid-afternoon light was also a challenge, forcing me to embrace the contrast and find flattering light in the shadows. Several of the photographers there that day also showed me how they use some of their lighting equipment to offset the harsh light, inviting me to rethink the usefulness of flash.

In the end, I sweated a lot (it was HOT out that afternoon!), made some new connections, stretched myself beyond my comfort zone, and created some images I’m proud of.

Kolby and Shaffen

Rebecca and Trevor

Olivia

Wandering Westport: Part Two of Chris and Hanna’s Urban Session {Kansas City Couples Photography}
 urban engaged or married couple in Westport archway engagment photography couples photography Kansas City, MO

As promised, here is Part 2 of Chris and Hanna’s fun and relaxed session! (If you missed Part 1, you can find it here)

One of the things that Hanna and Chris have loved about their current apartment is its proximity to the quaint and unique shops and restaurants of Westport. They love to try new restaurants together as fun little dates, so it made sense to do the second portion of their session in this fun part of Kansas City. We didn’t really have a plan for this portion of the session, other than to wander together and give ourselves permission to stop whenever we found a place that looked fun. And let me tell you, it was so much fun! Westport is full of colorful storefronts, brick alleys, and unique little nooks and crannies. And we found the most beautiful, dramatic light in the parking garage of all places!

I also loved that many of the buildings and shop fronts had an international flair to them. Those seemed to particularly suit Chris and Hanna, who love to travel together (in fact, Hanna described a backpacking trip through South America as their favorite “date” together!)

A Newlywed Home: Chris and Hanna’s Adorable In-Home Session {Kansas City Couples Photography}
 cuddling together with coffee on a bed during an intimate in-home couples session in Kansas City, MO

(I’m actually going to post Chris and Hanna’s session in two parts, because there’s just too much goodness to fit in one post! So stay tuned for Part 2!)

I love photographing couples and families in their homes. These in-home sessions happen most often when a newborn baby makes his entrance into a family or when the cold of winter pushes us all indoors, but I think the home provides a sweet, intimate setting for a photo session in any season (and in any season of life). Home is the space we come to rest, to relax, and to be most fully ourselves with the ones we love, and I enjoy seeing the ways each home reflects the life and personalities of those who inhabit it. 

So you can imagine how excited I was when Hanna and Chris asked if we could do their session their cozy Westport apartment! This apartment was their first home together as a married couple and holds many memories of that first year and a half as newlyweds. They are preparing to move this year, though, and wanted to commemorate that season in their first home with a photo session before they go. 

Their apartment is full of light, warm color, and the kind of character that only an older building can offer. Every room held little details that spoke of Hanna and Chris’ personalities and life together, from the walls that friends help paint when they first moved in to Hanna’s easel and paints in the dining room, the theology books lined up on the shelf next to a globe of the world, the old newspaper stand that proclaims “You’re Married”, and the potted plant trailing on the window sill. 

Before their session, Hanna shared that the two of them met in college, while riding together with friends on the way to a dance. They hit it off on that car ride (so much so that they may have freaked out their friends!) and both fell in love with their ability to banter back and forth and make each other laugh. It wasn’t hard to imagine the banter of that first meeting as I watched them joke and tease and laugh together during their session. 

Chris and Hanna, thanks for being vulnerable enough to allow me into your home to photograph you together! It really was a joy to spend that Saturday morning together!