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Do Wedding Photographers Charge Too Much?

[vc_row row_type="row" type="full_width" icon_pack="font_awesome" text_align="left"][vc_column][vc_column_text] Do Wedding Photographers Charge Too Much? I'll let you decide. We are a wedding photographer here in Chicago, Pabst Photo, and we are going to take a look at some numbers behind the scenes. Where does the Money go? I keep a very tight record on expenses...

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Bridal Meetings with Photographer | and Mom and Dad

Photography Meeting Weddings are obviously expensive, we all know that. Often times the photographer is one of the biggest bills on the wedding day - accounting for 10-15% of the total wedding budget. That means that the average wedding photographer is asking for a 2500-3500 dollar check....

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Fashion Inspired Engagement Session

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text] Christina and Anthony Engagement sessions in the fall can be tricky. It could be 50 or minus 5 degrees. This past Saturday we had the pleasure of photographing this lovely couple and fortunately, the weather cooperated as much as can be expected. It was mostly overcast and...

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Chicago Female Senior Portaits

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text] Fashion and Editorial Style Senior Portrait As we continue to push our photography in a more editorial and fashion direction every job is an opportunity to express that vision. This senior portrait session with took place in the west loop of Chicago. Seniors are young. Or...

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Ashley and Joey Barnes Wedding Highlights

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text] Ashley and Joey Barnes | Indianapolis Wedding [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]It's finally here. Ashley and Joey were married one month ago today. Happy one month anniversary you two! This magical day started at the Conrad Hotel in downtown Indianapolis. The girls began getting ready in a bridal...

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New Orleans Minication

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] Our Three Day Visit to New Orleans [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text]New Orleans is like an eccentric old aunt. Her calm and pleasant veneer hides her unpredictable nature and her often ridiculous behaviour. She is a combination of old-world gentility and outrageous decadence. The cheerful demeanor is inviting. Elegant...

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Ashley + Joey | Coming Soon

Coming Soon Ashley and Joey - you guys are awesome. We know you are itching to see just a moment from your amazing day. We can't continue to keep ALL this wonderful footage to ourselves. Here is a teaser, a taste, a glimpse. Also, a special shout-out...

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Make it about the Work First

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text] MAKE IT ABOUT THE WORK FIRST Sometimes we forget that we are more than brands. Sure, we are Pabst Photo, but we are also just people. We interact with others. We are selling more than photography, more than art even. We are selling ourselves. Not in...

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Breakfast and Baseball

Brunch at the Dawson, Drinks at Citizen Bar, and Wrigley Field As we move into fall and our wedding load goes down we have more time to catch up on our social lives. My sister Cassie and her husband Tom were up for the weekend. We started...

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Bridal Party Photography | Make it Fun

Dealing with a large bridal party. Make it fun. Photography tips and how we got the shot. Before and After Bonus. This post is two parts. First, I want to talk about the importance of having fun. As a wedding photographer, we are often asked to wear...

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Outdoor Farm Wedding | DIY

Film Style Farm Wedding | Outdoor Barn | DIY Jen and Josh Married on her father's farm, Jen and Josh had a truly beautiful DIY wedding. Jen worked really hard on every detail. Along with her family, they did all the flowers, food, and decorating. We were...

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Shooting the Dress | Before and After

Shooting the Wedding Dress | Before and After Photojournalism in wedding photography is not exactly photojournalism at all. It's not like we are shooting the news overseas. If there is a Corner Bakery bag in every shot while the girls are getting ready nobody is going to...

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Art Institute Chicago | Wedding Photography

Ariana and RD | Art Institute Chicago Wedding Photography The groom woke up and his car was gone. This is not how most wedding days begin, but every wedding is unique. RD quickly realized he'd parked in a spot clearly marked No-Parking. "No Worries," he thought,...

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Riverside Reception Hall | Geneva, IL.

Kristen and Brian at Riverside Reception Kristen and Brian were married on August 9th 2014 at St. Mary's Church in Huntley, IL. This lovely couple celebrated in style with family and friends at the cozy Riverside Reception hall in Geneva, IL. We has such a great time working...

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Columbia Club Downtown Indianapolis

Margot and Mitch | Indianapolis Wedding Photography Margot and Mitch are two of the sweetest people you could hope to meet. While it is very satisfying to meet new people and share in their most special day, it's such a pleasure to share the day with...

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Omni Severin Indianapolis Wedding

Abby and Adam We had the honor to capture the amazing wedding day of Abby and Adam. We couldn't possibly say enough great things about these two. We could feel the love in the air. A warm-hearted, genuine, deep, family kind of love flowed plentiful. From morning...

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Wedding Reception at the Rookery | Chicago

Wedding at the Rookery Mandy and Chad Jamie and her sister Kim grew up with Mandy Gibson who married Chad Wells last night. While we love shooting weddings, it was really refreshing to attend one as a guest. It's been a busy summer to say the least....

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Bride and Groom Portrait Before and After

Bride and Groom Before and After This is a simple before and after shot. As we were walking around the Chicago Art Institute we were looking for good light. We were just wandering the halls waiting to see something that looked interesting. I always look for large...

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Artistic Night | Wedding Photography

Artistic Night - Wedding Photography using Flash This post has two purposes. First, I want to talk about doing an artistic shot to end your wedding day. Second, I want to talk about this shot in particular. When we shoot a wedding we spend almost all day...

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The Woes of Owning a Business | Photography

The Business side of Photography Starting, owning, and operating a small business is hard work. For those outside looking in, it might seem glamorous at times. It is not. There is this impression that you get to make your own hours, work from home often, and do...

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Before and After Bridal Party | The Little Things

Before and After, bridal party, and fixing the floor. Great photos don't happen by accident. At least not very often. This is a very simple post, but I think it's an important not to make. We live and shoot in an imperfect world. We cannot control...

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Bridal Party Pictures | Tips

How to take large bridal party pictures Taking large group photographs is not easy. Nay, doing it well is very difficult. It's not something you master overnight. In fact, I volunteer to say it's one of the things I still struggle with. It's difficult. First of...

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Bridal Portrait Posing | Over the Shoulder

Bridal Portrait Posing Tip Posing is hard. In fact, it's so difficult, I think it's why half of the photographers in the industry are claiming to be 'pure photojournalists'. Bogus I think. A true photojournalist would never tell a bride how to pose - they would...

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Retouching the Background | Bridal | Before and After

There are many things that make a good wedding portrait. Lighting, posing, background, just to name a few. Don't let anyone fool you, they are all important, but lighting is the most critical. Light is what allows us to take a picture in the first place....

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Chicago Wedding Photographer Prices

What do most people spend on a Wedding Photographer? The average bride spends 8-12% of the wedding budget on the photographer. Does that sound reasonable to you? The average cost of a wedding in the Chicago area is between $35,000 and $45,000 - so, if we...

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Wedding Photos from Omni Severin Hotel, Indianapolis

Wedding Pictures at the Omni Severin Hotel, Indianapolis Some of the wedding photos we took at the Omni Severin Hotel located in downtown Indy. You can see the pictures in our portfolio of this Omni Hotel wedding. The four diamond Omni Severin Hotel is located in the heart of downtown Indianapolis, connected to Circle Centre...

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How I Got the Shot | Senior

Outdoors| How I Got the Shot I really wanted to share this photo from a recent senior portrait session because I love the way it turned out and I think there are several things worth pointing out. As we were walking the west loop looking for...

Yorkville IL Chicago Wedding Photography Farm Barn (154)
Photography Styling, Trends, Fads and the Future

Photography in the Past When we flip through our parents wedding albums we can't help but laugh at many of the pictures. Why is that? Is it because everyone is lined up staring straight at the camera or is it because dad has a handlebar mustache...

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Godox Ving 860c Review and First Impressions

First Impressions Godox Ving 860c You asked for first impressions and first impressions are mixed. I love the feel of this thing right out of the box. It is heavy. Feels great in the hands like its Canon counterpart. The battery door opens and closes like...

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Chicago Courthouse Wedding | City Hall

Yang and Rongbo Wedding We have been shooting together in Chicago for over five years and yet we have never been to city hall - for a wedding or otherwise. Often when people think about a courthouse wedding they think of elopement. For Yang and Rongbo...

How To Install Lightroom Presets

How to Install Your Lightroom Presets:  Go into Lightroom and click on Edit at the top (next to File). Go down to Preferences and click on it. There will be a new screen that pulls up.  There will be six tabs at the top, click on Presets (second tab). Click on the box titled, Show Lightroom...

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Blackstone Hotel Wedding Chicago | Photography

Michelle and Michael Wedding at the Blackstone Hotel Pabst Photo had the privilege of shooting the Miller-Shea wedding this past weekend. It was our first wedding of the Spring and the weather cooperated in fashion. Michelle and Michael were married on April 5th 2014 at St. Mary...

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Chicago Food Photography | Big Hatt Gourmet

Big Hatt Gourmet | Txoko Dos We both love food. We both love photography. Why not mix the two?! Event and Food Photography Last Saturday Josh and I had the awesome opportunity to work with Chicago Chef Craig Bell and his Big Hatt Gourmet team at the Subzero-Wolf showroom...

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Cancun Vacation 2014 | Casa Manga | Hotel Zone

2014 Cancun Vacation | Hotel Zone A few facts to start this post. We live in Chicago. Chicago has had one of the coldest winters in 30 years. This was the 5th snowiest winter in Chicago's recorded history. Going to Cancun in February was a must....

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Photo Case | Lowepro Pro Roller x200 | Review

Lowepro Pro Roller x200 Review vs the x100 We were in the market for a gig bag to be used primarily shooting weddings. Ordering such things online is difficult because you can't touch it, can't load it, roll it, lift it, or get a feel for...

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Chicago Cinegraphs | Pictures in Motion

Chicago Cinegraphs Cinegraphs: uncharted territory for me, but I really like the idea. Since I came from a videography background I still love the art. Video is simply nothing but 24 pictures taken every second. The concept of stills in motion is really appealing. I think...

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Accounting Software for Photographers | TAVE

Freelance Wedding Photographer Accounting Software: Choosing TAVE If you are serious about your small business, it's time to take your accounting to the next level - on par with the work you are doing. For the first year I was using Google Documents to manage my...

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Matt and Christina | Engaged at The Rookery

My good buddy and his beautiful girlfriend Christina got engaged today. Matt chose the Rookery in Chicago. I didn't ask him the exact significance, but I can offer my two cents - for what that's worth - very little I suppose. The Rookery is a...

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Natural Light Wedding Photographer

Natural Light Wedding Photography What does it really mean to be a natural light wedding photographer? Is it a good thing? I'll do my best to answer these questions and more in the following paragraphs. But first, I want to state that when I first started...

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Dayna and Benjamin Ari visit to Atlanta

This post is looong overdue, but here it is! I went to visit my best friend and college roommate, Dayna, in her hometown of ATL a few months ago for some quality girl time, and most importantly to meet her precious baby boy!! So glad...

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Bride and Groom | Wedding Photo | 3D How I Got The Shot

How I Got The Shot | Pabst Photo Part of the ongoing How I Got The Shot series from Pabst Photo encouraging better photography for all. Gear: Canon 5D Mark II, 50mm f/1.4, Yongnuo TN-622C Wireless E-TTL trigger, 2x Yongnuo TN-468 II TTL The following diagrams illustrate the...

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Rachel and Evan | Engagement Session Chicago River West

River West E-Session in Chicago - Rachel and Evan and Miles the dog! We had the pleasure of meeting and photographing Rachel and Evan this past Monday. They brought along the newest addition to their family - Miles - a rambunctious and beautiful boxer mix. Anyone that...

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Photography Delivery | Custom USB Drive for Digital Images

USB Drive Engagement and Wedding Photography Delivery All of our engagement sessions and wedding photography packages come with digital file delivery in a customized Pabst Photo metal tin. The USB drives themselves range in 4gb – 16gb depending on the breadth of the shoot. It’s important...

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Indianapolis Museum of Art | Wedding Photography | IMA

Lauren + Mike | Wedding | Museum of Art (IMA) Indianapolis Just three days ago we attended the beautiful wedding of Lauren Staub and Mike Hewitt. The ceremony and reception took place at the Indianapolis Museum of Art. It is a beautiful museum both inside and...

The Griswold’s are Here | California

The joke carried through the week with the Pabst clan laughing at themselves as the out-of-town mid-western folk arriving in each location claiming, "the Griswold's are here!" Unfamiliar with 5 lanes of traffic and motorcycles zipping between the cars we made our way from LAX...

Chicago History Museum Wedding Photography

Kim Barrash and Mark Kappelman Tie the Knot Chicago History Museum Wedding This magical wedding took place on July 6th 2013.  Just imagine if you will, summer, Chicago, 4th of July weekend, and the Chicago History Museum. Add a couple beautiful people, a white horse and carriage,...

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Cocktail Hour | The Tasting Room | Chicago, IL

Julie and Anthony Wedding Reception Part II Julie and Anthony were married in California not long ago and had the full wedding experience out west. However, the couple wanted to come home to Chicago and share the joy with even more friends and family and decided...

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04 | Looking at other Photographers | Reference Imagery

Other Photographers Work It's amazing how many wannabe photographers I meet - especially online and in forums - that are truly self depreciating. Websites like Digital Photography School are full of these types. So many photographers, especially those starting out look at the work of others...

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Evansville Indiana | Wedding Photography

Evansville Wedding Photographer | Kokies | Echo Valley This beautiful wedding took place on Memorial Day Weekend 2013. Jaci and Adam are both from Indiana and the parents of the bride, Judy and Tim, live in Evansville, Indiana – which is exactly where this wedding took...

Chicago Engagement Photography Session

E-Session | Chicago | Loop - Millennium Park We really wanted to capture the city as much as the couple. The e-session started in the west loop near the Pabst Photo studio and then moved east toward Millennium Park. We shot around the Frank Ghery band...

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How I Got The Shot | Beautiful Bride Wedding Dress

How I Got The Shot - Bride Putting On Dress As with all the HOW I GOT THE SHOT series I have started with a 3D diagram to better illustrate the concepts behind what is happening. This was a difficult spot, but we can't always control where...

03 | Photographers Laid Off | Sun Times | What it means?

You've probably heard about the 28 full time photographers that were recently laid off by the Chicago Sun-Times. I want to talk about it in a different light than most of the news; I've heard a lot of Armageddon-like chatter from the photography industry and...

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Natural Light | Flash Photography | Sun as Rim Light

Natural Light vs Flash Photography This post isn't really about natural light versus flash photography, it's about making our photographs the best that they can be. That is the point of our profession after all. I shoot natural light all the time, but I also know WHEN and HOW...

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Color Schemes and Combinations | Colour Ideas

Color Ideas just got easier thanks to Kuler by Adobe Doing graphic design work, painting your house, or learning art or photography - understanding color theory and how colors compliment each other does not come easily to all people. Hopefully this post can offer some help.Whether you are...

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Birthday Invitation | Graphic Design | Las Vegas

Vegas! Graphic Design | Birthday Invite When I think Vegas, I think bright lights, playing cards, poker chips, slot machines, coins, dice, shows, restaurants, cocktails, night life - craziness! I couldn't possibly design an invitation that showcases everything Vegas has to offer, so I narrowed it...

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Paris Club Chicago | Save The Date | Graphic Design

Chicago, Il - Paris Club - Save The Date Graphic Brian and Cecile were married in Cecile's home town in France. How romantic must that have been?! A few months after the big day, they had a wedding reception -- appropriately enough -- at the Paris...

Creative Live | Free Live Workshops for Photographers

Creative Live is full of talented photographers eager to share their tips and tricks with us. Workshops can be expensive, and if you don't live in a big city, then they are difficult to get to. CreativeLive has changed that and I have to admit that...

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Wedding Invitation | County Line Orchard | Custom Graphic Design

Our County Line Orchard Wedding Invitations Personalized, Custom Designs by Jamie Pabst | County Line Orchard The best thing my husband ever taught me was ‘don’t reinvent the wheel’. Look around for inspiration. This is how I start every project. I create an ‘inspiration’ folder, surf and...

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Before and After | Studio Portrait | Female

Adobe Photoshop Portrait Before and After First of all, this beautiful girl really doesn't need any Photoshop touchup. That said, what girl doesn't want a little post-airbrushing? We've all seen the magazines, why not let your wedding photographer do the same thing? We here at Pabst...

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Terminology and Acronyms | Lens Guide | Canon Compatible

IS, VC, DG, DX, Canon, Sigma, Tamron, EF-S, L, USM, XR, LD, IF, DI, DI-ii - Making Sense of all the different lens terminology. Just about every camera lens manufacturer has the same features in their lenses. They of course all use different terms to describe those...

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Yongnuo Yn-622C vs Pixel King Flash Triggers

Yongnuo YN-622C wins the day. Why? I'll tell you why I purchased the Pixel King and then returned it just days later in favor of the Yongnuo triggers. First of all, shame on me for not doing my standard amount of research before purchasing. I...

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Save The Date | County Line Orchard

I designed this save the date for our rustic apple orchard / barn wedding. Though it was already nine months ago, I'm still gushing over our gorgeous, perfect wedding day at County Line Orchard in Hobart, Indiana! We had an outdoor ceremony in the orchard and...

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Branding Pabst Photo | Graphic Design

Branding Pabst Photo | Details Below Heading - 1 Heading - 2 Heading - 3 Heading - 4 Heading - 5 Heading - 6 The early stages of web design - things like fonts and graphics and logos are all being developed simultaneously. With any luck we will have all these details...

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Shamrock Shuffle | Chicago, IL | 2013

Sponsored by Bank of 'Merica the Shamrock Shuffle is an 8k race through the streets of Chicago. The race just so happens to go right by the Pabst Photo studio. The race took place this morning at 8:30am. I was also pumped to see the...

Speed Art | Photoshop | Trump Tower Destroyed

Speed Art - Trump Tower Destroyed in Photoshop There's no good reason for this post. There's no good reason to waste two hours on such a thing. That said, people love speed art and they love Michael Bay Transformers. I just kind of combined them. I Took...

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Photoshop Tutorials | Green Screen Compositing

Tutorial on green/blue screen Chroma Key Photoshop Compositing Steps in text below. Chroma Key In this tutorial, we  search the net for a previously shot green/blue screen chroma image. Make sure to search for a large image when using Google Image Search. Next, we have to remove our image from...

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Canon 50mm 1.8 Sample Pictures

Canon 50mm 1.8 Sample Pictures - Photo's, Images, and Test Shots Sometimes you just want to see pictures taken with a lens you are interested in buying and that's all there is to it. You have read the reviews, you know the price points, now you...

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Exposure Compensation | Camera Settings

Camera Exposure Compensation-Metering There's a reasonable chance that you have never used or adjusted your exposure compensation. That's okay. Some photographers never do. Let me start by saying it is an advanced feature. Photographers at this level often shoot in full manual or shoot in a semi-auto...

02 | Free Photography Services | Getting Started

Offering free photography services sounds terrible, but we have to keep a long term perspective on this endeavour. When I started my wedding videography company I was terrified. I truly didn't know if I could do it. I had purchased a professional video camera at...

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Chicago Engagement Photography | Union Station

Engagement Session in Chicago | Mike and Lauren Union Station and the Studio of Pabst Photo Jamie and I had such a blast photographing Mike and Lauren this past weekend. They are wonderful together and we just loved the way their photos turned out. A mix of...

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Aperture Settings | Numbers in Photography

A look at Aperture Settings and the Numbers in Photography I'm sure we can both agree, there a lot of numbers in photography; especially to those just starting out. It's a lot to keep track of. There are fundamentally only three ways you control your camera...

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Camera ISO | A Simple and Awesome Explanation

Camera ISO, What is it? One of the questions I get most often from people just learning to use their DSLR camera is what is Camera ISO and what does it do? Most people are pretty keen on shutter speed and aperture even if they don't...

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Face Explosion | How I Got The Shot

How I Got The Shot of My Face Exploding! This is another post with some high level post production and is not for everyone. I want this blog to be helpful and enjoyable for photographers and designers of all skill-levels, so if this post is not...

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How I Got The Shot | 3D Green Screen Composite

This is not the typical "how I got the shot". It's more involved, but it does represent an idea that anyone can play with. Let's start with the concept of taking a picture, in the studio or anywhere for that matter, and then transporting our...

01 | Building a Photography Business

I wish I had started something like this years ago when I was beginning in the wedding industry. If nothing else to remind myself how hard it is to start and maintain your own business. I'm not sure if this 'journal series' is aimed at...

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Revolution Brewery | Brew Tour Experience

Brew Tour at Revolution Brewery Chicago A while ago we went to the Revolution Brewery here in Chicago and as expected, I had my camera with me. I intend to keep this post short and sweet, but as usual it's always fun to share some personal photography...