The Winner Is...

Friday, September 4, 2015

Drum roll, please.

We've had a great time hearing from the lovely Adrienne over at PlayOnLight Photography as she's shared some tips on perfect wedding and engagement photography on our blog. She's a wealth of knowledge and true master of her art.

And now, it's time to giveaway an engagement session to one lucky couple!

The winner will get a chance to work with Adrienne and receive a photography session inclusive of:
  • 1 Hour Outdoor Engagement Shoot
  • 2 Locations
  • 2 Outfit Changes
  • A Jump Drive of 50 edited, high-resolution images you'll own complete rights to

Ok, ok... We'll get to the point.

The WINNER IS: Christina Clark!

Cheers to this lucky couple! Thank you to all who entered our Engagement Photo Giveaway! 

Be sure to visit PlayOnLight Photography for more beautiful photos and inspiration!
A huge thank you to PlayOnLight Photography for sponsoring this amazing giveaway!

5 Important Questions to ask Before Booking Your Wedding Photographer

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Before all else, have you entered for your chance at the engagement photo shoot with the amazingly talented PlayOnLight Photography?! If not, click here to enter. We'll be announcing the winner tomorrow! And now for today's topic brought to you by Adrienne of PlayOnLight Photography...

5 Important Questions to ask before Booking Your Wedding Photographer
Meeting with your potential Wedding Photographer can resemble a first date.  You both have hope for chemistry and common creative goals and you don’t want to scare the other away with unrealistic expectations.  Here are some questions I’ve been asked through the years that I feel, have been beneficial for the Couple and Myself so there’s no mystery in price, qualifications and vision.

  1. What are your packages? Wedding Photography pricing varies drastically (ranging from $2,000 to $8,000).  You should find out exactly how much is included in each package and what you’ll pay extra for.   Most photographers offer a less expensive package but you may receive less hours of photography, only 1 photographer and very little digital images or no rights to digital images at all.  This means you’ll be purchasing the photography you like at a separate cost in print form or in digital form. Typically you can expect around 15% of your wedding budget to go to photography so gauge from there.  
  2. What do you require for a deposit and how do you prefer payment? Like any transaction, it’s best to get the financials out of the way first.  Once a deposit is paid this holds your date so another couple doesn’t come along and snatch up your date.  Typically a wedding photographer will draw up an agreement holding your date and giving you a receipt once your deposit is placed.  Get everything in writing, hours of photography to everything your package includes.
  3. What happens if you are unable to photograph the wedding or if your camera or other equipment stops working during the Wedding? Professional wedding photographers should have a back-up camera and photographer if unforeseen circumstances occur.  We photographers realize this day cannot be redone and our profession requires us to take care of  every possible emergency so your day is about you, enjoying yourself.
  4. How do you recommend we prepare you for our day? As a photographer I invite the Bride to send me a link to her Wedding Pinterest Board so I can get an idea of her vision.  Also, I require the Bride and Groom to give me a timeline of their day with locations and addresses of those locations so I can map them out the day before and prepare myself with enough travel time.  I also text them the day before to make sure we have each other's numbers in our phones before the actual day of the Wedding.
  5. When will we get our photography back? Turn-around for photos is important but shouldn’t be a deal breaker, especially if you’re getting married in prime wedding season.  Wedding photographers are hard at work and it may take up to 2 months to get back your photography.  After I shoot a wedding, I prefer to get them out as soon as possible because I do not want to harbor the responsibility of having the documentation longer than needed. I also back-up the raw files just incase anything happens to my computer and the files disappear. Editing a wedding truly takes around 40-50 hours, so be patient.
    A huge thank you to Adrienne to sharing all of her wonderful wedding photography tips with everyone! We'll be back tomorrow with the BIG winner announcement! 

Posing During Your Engagement Photography

Monday, August 24, 2015

We're giving away an engagement photo shoot to one lucky couple provided by the talented PlayOnLight Photography. Click here for your chance to enter! What better way to prep for those engagement photos than some tips by a pro? Adrienne from PlayOnLight Photography is sharing 5 Tips for Posing During Your Engagement Photography.

Your makeup and hair are on point and your man is lookin’ his best, now to make sure you do not look incredibly awkward during your shoot!  

Your engagement photography is photography just about you and your fiance and the best photos are the ones when you’re naturally being around one each other. I recommend having a glass of wine before the shoot to loosen up.  Also, you’ll be asked to kiss on demand and hold it so make sure you have your lip gloss handy for re-application here and there.

Here’s 5 tips on how to look adorable and in love:

//one// Look into one another's eyes.  
Go try it now, it will make you laugh, it will make you focused and it will make you truly tap into one another’s energy.  It makes for a great photo of being in the moment.

//two// Wrap yourself around one another.  
Get on their back! Wrap your arms around and give a good squeeze. Don’t be afraid to put your arms around the other’s neck.  This creates movement and having your arms around someone from behind shows affection and togetherness.

//three// Don’t always smile.  
When you look at one another, don’t smile just look at them. Also you can look and open your mouth just a little.  This creates the idea that you are looking at them with some mystery and depth and looks quite sexy.  Also, practice looking away while smiling and closing our eyes while smiling. 

//four// Get on the floor.  
Some of my best shots are taken looking down on the couple or hiding in the grass while shooting the couple as they talk or laugh together.  So wear clothing and chose a location that will also be suitable for you to get low, on stairs, in a field.   Ladies, if you’re wearing skirts always make sure to sit with your feet crossed, to ensure you’re showing your best angle.

//five// Steal a kiss. 
While looking into one another’s eyes, wrapping yourself around them, or looking and not smiling, steal a kiss (BUT HOLD IT).  I love when couples truly embrace the moment and get caught up and kiss on their own without my direction.  The only thing is, I need to focus my camera so kiss but hold it, or just hold it till you hear a “click” from my camera!  Also, it's a good idea to practice dipping and kissing while dipping, it’s a great engagement and wedding shot.

Thank you again to the talented Adrienne for the great tips and stunning photos! Be sure to check back next week for even more wedding photography tips from the pro!

How to Dress for Your Engagement Photos by PlayOnLight Photography

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Did you miss the big news yesterday? We're giving away an engagement photo-shoot to one lucky couple provided by the talented PlayOnLight Photography. Click here for your chance to enter! What better way to prep for those engagement photos than some tips by a pro? Adrienne from PlayOnLight Photography is sharing 5 Tips for How to Dress for your Engagement Photos.

There is so much to consider when planning your engagement photography!  Your outfits should reflect your personalities and this session describes you as a couple during this special milestone in your life together. As the photographer, I’ve come across a few standing ovations and a few “what were you thinking”?  Bottom Line, be yourself...just the cutest version of yourselves.  Here are some simple tips to consider:

 //one// Classy, Sassy, Easy - those are themes you want to shoot for most during your engagement session. Classy - a flowy, whimsical evening dress or simple cocktail dress, perhaps a bowtie or fitted trousers on your fiance? Sassy, have fun with your photography! Sass it up with a dramatic eye, redder than usual lip, big hair, gloves, hat, fedora on your man, leather jacket a long coat, if you have tattoos - show them a little the color and texture looks great in photos.  Easy, if your relationship dynamic is not dressing up and you are more books, nature, sports and you prefer to wear flats or Converse?  Well then be you, but do it creatively! Sport team shirts, reading your favorite novels, bring your bikes, set your shoot on a rock, bring your dog?  Mostly be YOU, well...the best version of you as a couple.
//two// Location Collaboration -I always try to collaborate with my couples and get a feel of them and decide on a location that suits them best.  This has been the top of Sandia Crest, 50’s Diner, a baseball park, Downtown, Farms, Old Town or in an open field.  Regardless of location, your outfits must be be suited to that environment or you’ll spend half of your session trying to stay warm, keep dirt off you, fix your hair or stop sweating.  For example: if we’re going to hike somewhere ,bring comfy shoes or flat boots and a jacket.  I always encourage the couple to visit the location on their own before the shoot so they can choose an appropriate outfit.
//three// Color Me Bad - Your outfit swatch is very important! The most important rule with color is PLEASE DON’T NOT WEAR THE SAME COLOR or heaven forbid, the SAME OUTFIT! Do add elements of each other’s color in your outfits. Since many couples feature their Engagement Photography at their Wedding or Save the Dates; this can an opportunity to subtly incorporate your wedding theme colors in your photography. I tell my clients to incorporate 3 colors, no more!  If you wear a black dress have fun using a pop of color with your shoes and nails.  Use that same pop of color in an element of your fiancés, like his tie, scarf or shoes or a stripe or pattern in his shirt.  The two remaining colors can be neutral, dark or both.
//four// Hair & Makeup - Since you are investing money into your photography, you may want to consider getting your makeup done professionally.  Color relays differently in a photo. While a neutral lip color and barely-there makeup looks great in real life, in a photo, you’ll look washed out.  While doing your make-up consider a long-thick lash, well defined brow and contouring of your cheeks, and blush.  These tricks make such a difference! Your hair should also reflect you, don’t try something new the day of the shoot! You can do a couple looks if you’d like by having it back for some and down for some.  If your hair is short make sure it is styled with lots of hairspray!  There is always wind during shoots and I’ve seen hair slowly flatten or frizz. You may also want to consider brightening your teeth.
//five// Style it up! - Don’t be afraid to use props, cars, hats, scarves, guitar, balloons, or a flower in your hair!  Your Engagement marks a fun time in your relationship, a time that can never be returned so don’t be afraid to go a little crazy! Get creative and do a fun DIY Save the Date.  If your lifestyle is country, take a photo on the bed of your truck with a cowboy hat. If you’re a little nerdy, wear your favorite superhero shirt (just don’t match) or consider doing the shoot in a library or on a pile of books. If you’re into music wear headphones around the neck while posing in a graffiti downtown.  If you like to bike, do a little portion of your session on your bikes. This doesn’t have to be all of your shoot just a little portion that explains what your interests are as a couple.  
Thank you Adrienne for the amazing tips and beautiful photos! Be sure to check back next week for even more wedding photography tips from the pro!

Engagement Photoshoot G I V E A W A Y! PlayOnLight Photography

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

We are excited to bring you an incredible giveaway for an engagement photo-shoot by the amazing PlayOnLight Photography.
Adrienne Acosta is the talent behind the camera of PlayOnLight Photography. Originally from Los Angeles, CA she worked in the publishing industry for a company that published 200 magazines where she was introduced to photography working as a photography assistant. Family ties brought her to The Land of Enchantment, which she now lovingly calls home, eleven years ago. Adrienne's husband, David, and her began photographing family and friends weddings.
Adrienne Acosta, Owner and Photographer PlayOnLight Photography
With encouragement and support from her husband, Adrienne started PlayOnLight Photography four years ago. Since then, she's done every type of photo-shoot but finds the most passion with infants and weddings, both challenging but the most rewarding.

PlayOnLight Photography has flourished in the past four years thanks to loyal clients spreading the word about this talented woman. The Mother of three recently did her first Gallery Show 'Hood-Scapes' in Downtown Albuquerque with accolades written by the Albuquerque Journal. Adrienne's passion for New Mexico, the locals, the beautiful scenery, sunsets and natural landscapes make for a unique perspective and one amazing photographer.
For the giveaway, one lucky couple will win the following with PlayOnLight Photography:
  • 1 Hour Outdoor Engagement Shoot
  • 2 Locations
  • 2 Outfit Changes
  • A Jump Drive of 50 edited, high-resolution images you'll own complete rights to
It doesn't get any better than that! Below is your chance to enter. The more entries you fulfill, the better your chances. We will announce the winner on Friday September 4th, 2015.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Check back tomorrow for some amazing tips from Adrienne herself on how to dress for your engagement photoshoot! The weeks leading up to the announcement of the winner, we'll be sharing photography tips related to engagements, weddings and everything in between. Stay tuned!
Be sure to visit PlayOnLight Photography for more beautiful photos and inspiration!
A huge thank you to PlayOnLight Photography for sponsoring this amazing giveaway!

Rules: Winning couple must be local to New Mexico. Any changes or additions to the prize as listed will be at an additional price paid to PlayOnLight Photography. The photoshoot shall take place in Albuquerque, Santa Fe or in between Albuquerque and Los Lunas, NM. Entries will be verified.

Friday, May 29, 2015

It's Friday, we've finally recovered from our Memorial Day hangover, just in time for the weekend! We're back with our third installment in our DIY Succulent series. Today's favor tutorial is brought to you by the easiest DIY known to man. After the longest short week, we like easy :) Grab your girls, a bottle (or two) of wine and crank these bad boys out.

  • Small Succulent plant, 4oz- Prices range from $2.99 at a local nursery like Jericho or $5/4 at Lowes
  • Small chalkboard folding boxes- We found ours in the Target dollar section, but you can also find them here
  • Permanent Marker- again, find something that goes with your colors
Gather all your supplies and pop that bottle of wine
Choose what you'll write on the box. You could do your last name and wedding date, your favorite love quote, or your initials. An alternate would be to design a sticker and apply it directly to the box.
We chose to leave the plant in the original plastic and simply dropped it into the box. Alternately, you could place the plant directly into the box with a little extra soil. Either way make sure to water it!

Tie some twine or ribbon to match your wedding colors and you're done. You have unique favors that are inexpensive, cute and your guests will love them.
How easy was that? It doesn't take a super complex DIY to have great results! Happy Friday Friends!!

Jessica & Alex

Healthy Wedding Hair Tips

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Your hair is one of the first things people will see at your wedding and you will have countless photos with your do on display, so make sure it's in tip top shape for the big day. A great hairstyle starts with healthy hair. Here are some helpful hair tips for the weeks and days leading up to the wedding day.
//one// Drink water! Isn't this the answer to everything? Yes!! Water will keep you and your hair hydrated and looking fabulous.
//two// Do a hair mask once a week. You can try a pre-made hair mask or use what you have at home and try a DIY hair mask.

 //three// Biotin. Add this little pill to your daily vitamin routine and you'll see results in no time. More hair growth, stronger nails and beautiful hair.
//four// Don't stress! Ya right, it's wedding season! But do yourself a favor and chill out by taking a yoga class, a UFC boxing class or a bike ride. Less stress on your mind means a healthier body...and hair!
//five// Cut the crap on your hair. Yes, we said it. Stop using all those nasty chemicals that will just create buildup on your hair leaving it less than lush. Opt for natural products, sulfate free (which seriously dry out your locks) and hydrating.
//six// Massage your scalp. Not only will it feel amazing, massaging your scalp will activate your hair follicles promoting growth and will distribute your natural hair oils. Get that fiancé on board and take turns giving scalp massages. Use a natural oil like Euro Oil for added benefits.
//seven// Eat clean. You know what they say 'you are what you eat'. If you're stuffing yourself with greasy, unhealthy foods, you'll feel it and so will your hair. We like the 80/20 rule of eating clean 80% of the time and allowing yourself those less than perfect moments 20% of the time.
//eight// Don't do any major changes to your hair a few months before your wedding. Major hair color changes, a big cut, bang, etc. These can all wreak havoc on your wedding day hair. You want to look like you on your wedding day. Keep the bangs for the honeymoon stage ;)
//nine// Keep the over styling to a minimum. The blow dryer, curling iron and flat iron will dry out your ends and fry your hair. Braids are on trend right now, so give your hair a break from the heat and wear a trendy braid instead. Your locks will thank you.


//ten// Dry Shampoo. Not only will it keep extra shampooing and styling down, it'll also save you some serious time for more important planning a wedding! We love this Triple Sec 3-1 Dry Bar Shampoo!

These aren't your traditional wedding hair tips, but beautiful hair starts with a good foundation from the inside out. A healthy mind and body will shine through those luscious locks creating the basis for a beautiful hairstyle on your wedding day.

2015 Wedding Trends- Pantone Scuba Blue

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Our next installment of Pantone's colors of the year is Scuba Blue.
An invigorating turquoise, PANTONE 16-4725 Scuba Blue conveys a sense of carefree playfulness. Even though a cool shade, the vibrancy of Scuba Blue adds a splash of excitement to the palette. Scuba Blue offers a feeling of escape as it is reminiscent of a tropical ocean. This stirring and energizing shade takes us off to an exotic paradise that is pleasant and inviting, even if only a fantasy. Via


So how do you incorporate Scuba Blue into your wedding without looking like a wedding under the sea? Here are a few ideas...

You know the saying 'something blue', well how about these elegant teardrop earrings? They are simple, elegant and add that hint of blue to tie in with the rest of your wedding.
These tulle skirts are amazing! Paired with a neutral shirt and simple shoes, they'd make a great bridesmaid outfit.
You can tie in your groomsmen to your bridesmaid without going overboard. A simple baby's breath boutonniere with scuba blue ribbon is the perfect nod to your wedding colors.

Flowers are such a huge part of your wedding. When trying to incorporate blue flowers, your choices are limited. But you could easily add colored glass, rocks or ribbon to a neutral arrangement adding that pop of color without overwhelming everything else.

You can make your wedding pop with a vibrant color like Scuba Blue without going overboard. Simple, yet elegant, small pops of color add that special touch to your wedding. Will you be incorporating Scuba Blue into your wedding?

DIY: Succulent Wedding Favors

Friday, May 15, 2015

Welcome to the second installment of our DIY Series on centerpieces and favors! 

This week we're showcasing some wedding favors sure to please all your guests with one of our favorite trends, succulents!!! Your hands may get a little dirty but we're making it fun, simple and easy to personalize.

This wedding favor meshes together mini mason jars, twine and wood tags. It's the perfect touch for a rustic wedding and recipients can replant the succulent and watch it grow (just like your love).

  • Small Succulent- Prices vary from $2.99 at your local nursery or 4/$5.00 at Lowes
  • Sea Glass- Found at any hobby store or on Amazon, these came from the clearance section at Target 
  • Mini Mason Jar- $1.00 section at Target or any hobby store 
  • Permanent or Paint Marker- Find one to match your style 
  • Wood Mason Jar Tags- Found at Hobby Lobby 10/$2.27

This project takes about 2 minutes per favor but it speeds up with a friend by your side.

//Step 1//
Using your favorite color of sea glass, fill your mason jar 2/3 of the way. Have fun mixing and matching your favorite color for a personal touch.

//Step 2//
Placing the succulent in the narrow jar wasn't as easy as we originally thought. So, make sure you squish the soil into a circular shape with your hands then insert into the jar. Pat it down so it's flush with lip of the jar. Don't be afraid to get a little "dirty".

//Step 3//
After you clean up your work area a bit, it's time for some messaging. Using our permanent marker we chose to write "Let our Love Grow" and the date, but don't afraid to play around some creative messaging and incorporate your name to be, date, etc. You can always write a message on both sides of the tag. 

//Step 4//
Can you believe we're almost done making this adorable wedding favor? All that's left is a simple piece of twine through the tag and around the jar to add the perfect rustic touch.

//The Finished Product//

We love using succulents because they are durable plants that can thrive nearly anywhere and are easy to replant.  This is the perfect way for your guests to be reminded of your love long after your wedding day.

Happy Friday!

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