Oh! The joys of starting a business! Everything is trial and error–and a lot of blog reading for advice, and scoping to find other ideas that might work better, and… you get the idea. :-) Here is a little insight into the dramatic change.

Every business has to account for paying its own expenses as well as paying the workers–even if the only worker is the owner. If I don’t pay myself then photography is only a self sustaining, very expensive hobby. Last year I tried to do what I thought the market demanded of me: allowing access to the image files (which I really like doing for a few different reasons) and “giving” you ALL the good images from every shoot. The problem is that I was spending hours after a shoot editing the good images, ending up with too many for my clients to choose their favorites from, and facing the dilemma of either having prices that were too high for people to pay or cutting myself way short and working for free. However, I recently saw an innovative pricing structure from another photographer and I think this will work much better for everyone involved.

The new setup is this: There are three levels, all of which allow me to choose the best of the best from your session and only edit those images. This cuts my post time in a third, allowing me to lower my prices accordingly and still provide you with stellar images.

So, if you haven’t already, please check out the new prices under the Investment tab. If you’ve been holding out on booking a shoot because of last year’s pricing structure, consider giving me a call.

Happy fall, everyone!!

If you normally see my posts on here, you might remember Megan and Tony from their adorable engagement session last fall. Well, last week, they tied the knot at that same spot where we took their engagement portraits. Their ceremony was very short and sweet, but oh-so-lovely!! We had a bit of time planned in for their portraits throughout the day and a reveal before the ceremony!

It turned out to be a pretty chilly day. Thank you, Virginia weather, for not allowing anyone to guess whether it will be 90 degrees or 50 on any given day! This happened to be one in the 50’s. But the bride toughed it out in her strapless gown (borrowing a leather jacket here or there throughout the day). We used the same blanket from their engagement shoot for some of the portraits, and boy was she happy when that came out! But the day was as lovely as the bride, despite the chill, and sunny as could be. Tony kept her nice and warm during their evening portrait at the bride’s favorite spot behind the reception venue.

 

But these people are not ones to worry about the cold! There was a bon-fire waiting for them when the couple arrived at the after party where the father of the bride provided the live music with his band!

There is so much to love about this day, that I’ll just let the images do the rest of the talking. ^_^

 

Metcalf Photography--Richmond, Virginia Photographer

Metcalf Photography–Richmond, Virginia Photographer

Casual Groom

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Hello there! I was perusing Pinterest, as I do (probably far too) often and came across advice that I would love to share with you. It’s a What to Wear guide that lays out the basics beautifully!

 

As a photographer, and not a stylist, it’s sometimes difficult for me to be able to explain why something looks great rather than just putting the pieces together and seeing it. This post from Paint the Moon puts it all into words so wonderfully, with lovely pictures to boot!

 

Her basics are:

 

Start with a palette: perhaps even with a print, and then pull your color scheme from the print (and only one print!)

 

Layers and textures are your friend.

 

No tennis shoes unless that is specifically “the look” you’re going for—like say, grunge.

 

Think about where the images will be displayed.

 

And get comfy (especially important for kids).

 

You can check out everything in detail HERE.  I really love her attention to the shoes and simple prop ideas. And if you ever need me to help pick pieces out before our portrait session, just let me know! I’d be there in a heartbeat!

 

Happy reading!

Once again, things have slowed down on the front end of Metcalf Photography. I’ve been hard at work putting together the tiny details that will help make everything easy for you to get lovely pictures of yourself and your life’s big events. My hope is that everything will be so seamless, you won’t even notice all the little pieces that make setting up, having and ordering from your session a breeze!

But! It’s still not fair for me to leave you lovelies hanging. So here are some of the things that past clients have been saying while I’ve been busy:

From Brandy, a wedding client:
“Not only does she have amazing pictures, her entire personality and demeanor make for an easy, non-stressful photo shoot. She makes sure you’re relaxed and into the pictures before snapping them, is excellent at capturing candid shots, and has the professionalism to present you with only the best quality work. Photos done by Metcalf Photography are definitely worth more than the actual cost!”

From Megan, after her engagement session—We’ll see more of her and Tony this fall!!
“great pictures! great person! kept everything relaxed and really captured me and my fiance in the photos <3” From Kacey, a wedding client and came back for her college senior portraits: “Erin saved my wedding! She was fabulous, she does the work of two photographers and you never even notice that she is there. She is a joy to work with and has a gift for bringing out the most natural smiles! I hate having my own picture taken, but she is super relaxed and we got some fantastic shots from my graduation shoot! Always my first choice when I am looking for a professional photographer.” From Rachel, after viewing her boudoir maternity images: “*spaz* Erin, they are so much better than I could have hoped!” From Theresa, a wedding client: “Hey Erin, WOW!! Many thanks again for all of your hard work. Brian and I couldn’t be more pleased!”

It’s a new year! And that’s the perfect time to plan new beginnings. If you’re still hunting for a photographer for your 2013 wedding, you should know about this sale! Between now and Valentine’s Day, you can get 13% off of the price of your wedding package. That’s a potential savings of almost $500!
If you know someone who is planning their 2013 wedding, pass this on!! It’s too big to pass up!

Hello again! This has been some year! As usual, business picked up in the late fall and into winter, so I’ve been a bit busy; mostly photographing families and growing families, but a couple of graduation ceremonies thrown in too! I have to say, It’s a hard choice to make between what was my favorite shoot this season, but I think the winner would have to be this mama, who finally had time for a shoot the WEEK of her estimated due date!

After working two jobs and going to school, this mama had FINALLY gotten a break! And just in time, since her new little one joined the family within a week. I was so happy we could make this happen for her!

I’ve also had the chance to continue capturing the growth of Tenzin with his 9 month pictures! Just starting to stand on his own, we had a fun time at the park with fall leaves! Take a peek:

Since he’s our Solstice baby, we’ll be doing his one year pictures soon, where we might get to see him walking since he just took his first steps the week of his birthday! It’s so incredible to get to watch him grow and to have the chance to capture it!

And last, but not least, I just HAVE to share a couple pictures of these ADORABLE girls from the Brown family session. Who wouldn’t love to photograph these beauties??

So, now it’s time to take a breather, take stock, and take hold of 2013! May it be a great year for you!

A couple of weeks ago, I had the privilege to take the engagement pictures of Megan and Tony in Dinwiddie. I’ve known Megan since she was a little girl, and it is amazing to see her fall in love with this wonderful man.
The couple are planning a country chic wedding for next fall. We really wanted to express the relaxed nature of this hard-working country couple, but they are both very shy people. So we spent a couple of hours just hanging out in their field and lounging on the dock of the pond–never mind that person with a camera sneaking around in the grass!

At first, I thought it would be a challenge to photograph TWO shy people, but it only took a few minutes for them to relax and start playing around. In the end, it was a great day, with some wonderful photos to show for it!

 

 

I’ve had a little time to play around with some new equipment and editing styles lately, and I have to say, I’m pretty excited. I also got some great shots of my son, so I though I might write a post and put a few up, and see what responses they get.
Most of the day, my son just has to move. So I get to really practice my focusing skills. Not only that, he’s also so used to the camera by now that I could pop up with a second head and he wouldn’t look twice if one of them had a lens in front of it! So I get to work on angles AND motion. Fun, fun, fun!
Take a peek, and see what you think!


I was meeting with a wedding client the other day and during our discussion I suggested she should think about hiring the second photographer as part of her package. She said something that other clients have said in the past, which is this, “Well, if it makes it easier on you…”

Since she’s not the first bride to say this, I think it is something I should post about, so other brides (even if you’re not hiring me) can have a little more info on the subject.

Let me start by saying that if you’re hiring a photographer, you should be able to trust that they can do the job, or look for someone else. If you’re not sure, ask how many weddings they’ve shot by themselves. Any photographer shooting weddings should be confident in their ability to do it on their own. That being said, OF COURSE it’s easier to have someone to work with, but mostly that is because it practically doubles the “time” you have to shoot. More on that later.

First, let’s start with the finances. If you’re a bride—or groom—on a budget (and who isn’t these days?) I know it seems that most economical thing to do is hire one photographer for your wedding day. But, as a photographer, I always advocate for hiring a pair; and it’s not meant to make your package price higher, I promise. In fact, it creates more work for me. I have to spend time to coordinate with my second shooter, I have more equipment (and backups!) to worry about the day of the wedding, and more pictures to sort through and edit afterwards. I don’t make much money by having the second shooter. A little bit of what you pay for the other photographer goes to cover the hours I spend processing the extra images, and the rest goes straight to paying that person.

Which, for you—the paying client—makes hiring the second photographer the best deal you can get for your wedding. For only a fraction of what you’re paying for one photographer, you get TWICE the opportunity for the perfect shot, twice the angles and twice the vision. With two photographers, you’re sure to get all the safe (traditional) images that your parents expect, plus the more modern, artistic shots.

Add to that the extra time factor. If you have two photographers you BOTH get more individual time for the photos. For the getting ready portion of your day (my favorite time) one photographer can focus on the groom and his guys, and one can focus on the bride and her ladies. Without having to run back and forth, each photographer can stay in the background capturing the essence of your day without interrupting the feel or flow of it. With one photographer, the time you have before the wedding is split between the two groups of people. Double the time means less rush for the portraits after everyone is ready to go.

Of course, this can be done with one person. There’s just more running involved (a LOT more!), and fewer angles and shots in general.

That being said, some people just want the traditional shots. Some couples prefer to have a very intimate wedding and just don’t need two people to cover a small space. BUT, now you have the information to make that decision based on more than just your package price.

Happy planning!

I wanted to help get the word out about a worthy cause happening next week. It’s the 4th Annual Find a Cure Bash happening at the Petersburg Old Towne Civic Center on Friday July 20th.
It’s hosted by a group who call themselves the Circle of Friends. Their friend, Theresa Tuck fought and lost the battle against cancer. Every year in her honor, these ladies throw a bash to raise money to benefit an organization that helps cancer victims and their families.
This year’s organization is the Hospital Hospitality House where Theresa and her family stayed while she was being treated. Hospital Hospitality House allows out of town family to be near the patient while they are in most need of support.
The Bash includes a silent auction, plenty of fun activities and good music!
I have also donated a $100 gift card for the silent auction. So if you’ve been interested in a session soon and you’re free on Friday head on down to Old Towne Petersburg and get some credit while helping a great cause!
You can also check out the Hospital Hospitality House’s site at hhhrichmond.org/ and directions to the civic center can be found here: www.otciviccenter.com/

Happy Partying!

Metcalf Photography Gift Certificate

Metcalf Photography Gift Certificate