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Do You Really Need a Second Shooter? Part 2 of 2

Do you really need a second shooter? I’m answering this question in this 2-part post. (The first part of this answer can be found here!) A few days ago, we went over 2 myths about the second shooter and their necessity at a wedding. We learned: 1. You don’t need a second shooter to ensure your photographer can be in “two places at once”—a skilled professional photographer is going to get absolutely all the important details, no matter what. and 2. While a second shooter might net you more photos, more doesn’t necessarily mean better. Today, I want to dispell one more myth before sending you off with my final thoughts! Do You Really Need a Second Shooter?  Myth: I’m having a huge wedding with 400 people on an enormous, sprawling piece of land, and I really need two people there to be able to capture all of it. Reality: Okay, you got me. This is one of those exceptions—but bear with me here. Enter: Lauren. (Scroll down for a little bit about her.) Lauren is Palermo Photography’s Associate Photographer. (Note the distinction in title between “second shooter” and “associate photographer.”) Lauren is more than just a “second shooter.” I proudly recommend…

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Do You Really Need a Second Shooter? Part 1 of 2

Do you really need a second shooter? In this 2-part post, I’ll be answering that question from my perspective.   Over 10 years ago (ahhhh!) I got started in the wedding industry as a second shooter—if you ask around, you’ll find that most professional wedding photographers do! Not only is hiring a second shooter pretty commonplace, but it’s a growing trend in wedding photography. I have my thoughts on the second shooter: If my client specifically requests one, I will always accommodate—my first and foremost goal is to be sure you feel comfortable, happy, and attended to while working with me, so of course I’ll be sure you get anything you need to that end. With a few exceptions (extremely large, 350+ guest weddings being one of them,) I don’t believe they’re completely necessary… …and in certain cases can even detract from having the most amazing wedding photography experience possible. Let me take just 2 minutes to explain. Do You Really Need a Second Shooter? First, if you aren’t familiar with the term “second shooter,” it’s pretty much what it sounds like: you hire a second photographer to work alongside your primary photographer. Typically, you hire this person through your…

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My Top 5 Photography Resolutions for the New Year

2017 is here! In celebration, I wanted to share my photography resolutions for the new year. First things first—what the what 2016? I don’t think I’ve ever seen a year fly by so quickly. That’s absolutely crazy to me. Pretty sure David Bowie just went out like a speeding bullet last January and dragged the space-time continuum along with him. But enough about that. Photography resolutions. 1. Shoot more photos in my personal life. (Whoops.) My life is pretty great—in part, because I spend so much of it totally entrenched with my happy clients, telling their beautiful love stories. But hey—my life’s a story worth telling, too! This year, one of the photography resolutions I’m really committing to is simply to take more photos for myself. And not just iPhone photos, either. Even more importantly, this will definitely help keep me grounded in my mission: to tell stories meaningfully and vibrantly, because stories matter. 2. Actually print photographs I’ve taken. The good thing is that there are a ton of great apps online these days making that much easier. While organizing and printing my digital photos might be a bit more time-consuming, I can definitely commit to using an app like Chatbooks…

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5 Reasons to Do a First Look

Thinking of knocking tradition? Need some reasons to do a first look? I’m all about turning old-timey wedding traditions upside down! With 10+ years experience in the wedding industry, trust me: you won’t get bad luck if you see each other before the ceremony. Need convincing? Look no further. 1. Get the most amazing photos. I’m listing this first because of all the reasons to do a first look, this is probably my favorite. Photos. Amazing, organic, emotional, story-filled photos. If you see each other for the first time at the ceremony, of course you’re going to feel something… …but with the officiant talking…a baby cooing in the audience…the best man letting out a cough…there’s really not going to be room for that feeling to breathe. Your heart will be pumping, and I’ll be snapping away at those perfect smiles… …but when you do a first look somewhere private, intimate—just you, me, and the love of your life—you capture something incredibly powerful and organic. In that private space without all those leering eyes, you and your love are free to let your excitement and joy overflow in the most natural, organic way possible, making for some incredibly memorable photographs (and moments!) 2. Calm…

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9 Things on My 2016 Photography Wish List

Looking for an experienced Pittsburgh destination wedding photographer? Contact Palermo Photography now!   This is part wish list, and part my attempt at waving my arms wildly and saying, “Hey! Anyone looking for a great Pittsburgh destination wedding photographer?” Just saying—I know a girl who knows a girl with lots of destination wedding experience. Seriously, though, I love my city. I love our huge palatial churches and I love all the gorgeous and unique places I get to photograph weddings in every year. I especially love that, as a wedding photographer, I get to balance my love of Pittsburgh out with my love of traveling. I’ve shot weddings all over the country and traveled across the ocean, and I’m so excited to get to do more of that. Still, in addition to my travel goals, there are a few other things I’m dreaming of, too. Here’s what I have my eye on: 1. Lo & Sons Claremont Bag I absolutely love the exquisite craftsmanship of this camera bag—yes, a camera bag! 2. Photobooks like this from Artifact Uprising Artifact Uprising is a pretty incredible company that makes everything from wood calendars to these simple yet sweet little photo books. I’d love to grab a collection…

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12 Toasty Warm Winter Wedding Cover Ups

Okay, so not all of these will keep you warm in subzero temperatures, but I still can’t help but love all these wedding cover ups! While autumn and winter are typically a wedding photographer’s “slow seasons,” I still get several couples looking to take advantage of the crisp, clean white background a beautiful winter has to offer, or the bright pops of color we might discover during a fall portrait session in the woods. If you’re one of those brides (or thinking about becoming one!) here are some great wedding cover ups for you to get inspired by! 1. Something soft and intricate 2. A cable-knitted shawl 3. A bright red cardigan with matching details 4. A giant, fuzzy, hooded cape 5. A breezy, lacy bolero 6. A deep, woodsy brown, fur shawl 7. A leather jacket 8. Short dresses + fuzzy wedding cover ups = <3 9. A bright yellow cardigan to match the setting sun 10. An alternative to the white dress with a deep, burgundy sweater 11. Something soft and pastel with sweet, floral details 12. White sweaters paired with chunky, woodsy scarves How about you? Could you pull off an outdoor wedding in the autumn or winter? Tell me about…

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What are Intimate Weddings?

Obviously, I love weddings. But intimate weddings? I really love intimate weddings. That’s because it’s not really the weddings that I love—it’s the people. It’s the love and the celebration and the secret glances and the unabashed smiles and the single tears. It’s the intimacy that makes marriage meaningful—that makes that moment, that exchange of vows, so meaningful. But what do I mean by “intimate weddings?” Here’s the thing: Huge weddings with 200, 250, 300+ attendants are really fun: especially once the dance floor opens up. But in an intimate wedding, I get to experience all that love and sweetness even more up close than I can while swerving in and out of an enormous wedding party. I classify intimate weddings as having about 150 attendants or fewer. But intimate weddings, to me, also include destination weddings… …and elopements! You know how they say “the more the merrier?” To that I say, “The fewer, the sweeter.” Smaller weddings give me an opportunity to really get to know my couples and everyone they love. They tend to be significantly less stressful on my couples as well, meaning more relaxed shoulders, brighter eyes, bigger smiles. Another pro: couples who choose destination weddings, elopements, or smaller weddings…

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Giving Thanks: A love letter to my work

When I stop and think about the road I have traveled to get to where I am today–in my business, in my life in general–there is a lot to be thankful for.  I am so genuinely thankful for every day that I get to do this work, capturing life’s most precious moments for people who invite me in to see a glimpse of what moves them, what fills them with joy and excitement.  I am so thankful every time I meet a new couple who are about to embark on a life together.  I am so thankful every time a new mother asks me to photograph the perfect miracle that is their new child.  I am so thankful to see that year after year, there are so many people out there falling more in love every day, making new memories, adding new milestones and members to the their love-filled lives.  And most of all I am so thankful that I get to share these precious, intimate and fleeting moments with people who enter my life as clients, and walk away a friends. One such couple I am so grateful to have met are these two lovebirds who just tied the knot at…

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3 Tips for Better Wedding Family Portraits

Wedding Family Portraits: What You Need to Know Most will admit—compared to all the other photo ops on your wedding day, family portrait time might not be the most glamorous. But for a vast majority of the couples I work with, it’s still an extremely important tradition—for the couples, AND for the family! There are 2 problems though—2 BIG problems with wedding family portraits, actually. TIME: Dark churches with staff trying to rush family members out after the ceremony resulting in major time constraints and ORGANIZATION: basically, Grandma not realizing that everyone was staying after the ceremony for portraits—so she heads off to the reception and doesn’t get to be in the pictures Today, we’re going to solve those problems. 1. Making TIME for wedding family portraits Traditionally, family stays behind after the ceremony to get their pictures taken at the altar. This is all fine and well, but a lot of times we run into problems: Lots of people on a dark, shadowy altar with overhead lights Church time limits requiring the family to leave the church between 15-30 minutes after the ceremony (and we’ll always lose some of those minutes, especially if you have a receiving line right after the…

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11 Ideas for the Warmest Winter Wedding

The likelihood that your Pittsburgh winter wedding will be a cold one is high. No worries! I’ve hopped on Pinterest for you and nabbed a couple really great ideas to keep spirits and shoulders toasty warm for your whole wedding. Got any ideas to add? Let me know in the comments!                     In search of award-winning Pittsburgh wedding photography? Contact Palermo Photography now!

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