The Queen Photographers // Photo of the Week: 4 Years In

The Queen Photographers // Photo of the Week: 4 Years In

I teamed up with a few other photographers and we came up with this awesome styled wedding. Using a real couple for models was very important. We wanted their love to be genuine. We wanted to capture the true essence of their love. Elliot and Tywanda Hansen were perfect! They had just celebrated their anniversary — 4 years of marriage! 

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Styled Shoot // Amber and Jaleesa's Colorful Asheville Glamping Elopement

Styled Shoot // Amber and Jaleesa's Colorful Asheville Glamping Elopement

This glamping styled shoot in Asheville was our way of shooting for us and our portfolios. It was a way for us to have a little fun behind the camera without the pressure of paying attention to clients’ expectations. I was so happy when I found Amber and Jaleesa via a model call I put out in The Queen Photographers on Facebook. They are such a lovely couple who are truly SO in love. It was a pleasure to photograph them for this shoot.

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Art + Design Wedding Inspiration in San Francisco

Art + Design Wedding Inspiration in San Francisco

This inspiration shoot emerged from a pattern design created by Teresa Reynolds who is also the talented hair and makeup artist for this collaboration. Her design exudes an energetic flow and ease with the organic movement which we loved seeing with clean straight lines and minimal elements. Its playful color palette was fun to interpret across all vignettes, keeping a balance of liveliness and sophistication.

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Wedding Inspiration // Mt. Hood Anishinaabe Winter Elopement

Wedding Inspiration // Mt. Hood Anishinaabe Winter Elopement

Jeremy and I thoroughly enjoyed our Native American themed photo shoot because we were able to incorporate our culture into the details. Both being Native, we have family heirlooms, traditional beadwork, and items that are important to us. I was very clear up front that the only way this photo shoot would work is if I had approval capabilities throughout the process. I did not want anything stereotypical or anything Jeremy and I wouldn't really have at our real wedding. Our culture is very important to us, so we wanted our heritage to be portrayed in an accurate fashion. Yes, Jeremy and I are a real engaged couple! It was important for me to wear my grandmother's turquoise bracelet and for Jeremy, his grandfathers bolo tie. I am a professional beadwork artist; therefore I wanted elements of my work incorporated into the shoot as well. Modern Native Americans get married in all types of ways. Some have very traditional weddings, others your average American wedding, but for us, we always wanted to mix elements of both. We get to throw our own Native wedding this September. It was fun to do this photo shoot and practice for the real thing!

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Wedding Inspiration // Capricorn + Libra Zodiac Elopement

Wedding Inspiration // Capricorn + Libra Zodiac Elopement

The inspiration for this shoot was drawn from the Zodiac signs, specifically Libra and Capricorn, without being too literal. Libras are known for being harmonious with a light and airy personality, while Capricorns rely on structure and are represented by dark, earthy tones. A scale is the symbol for Libra, so the shoot also plays with the theme of balance, which can be seen through the contrast of the light and dark color palette.

This was meant to be a nontraditional shoot, set in an intimate venue with a backdrop that acted as a setting for the ceremony, as well as the dessert bar. One bride rocked a flowy, ivory jumpsuit, while the other wore a dark lavender tulle skirt with an intricately beaded ivory top. The jewelry was hand-selected to compliment each bride’s sign, with one ring boasting a dark green sapphire and the other, a light blue sapphire. 

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These Are the Best Feminist-Friendly Songs to Put on Your Wedding Playlist

These Are the Best Feminist-Friendly Songs to Put on Your Wedding Playlist

You and your fiancé are ready for the big day: You've found the perfect pair of locally-sourced rings, your outfits are on point, and any sexist traditions have been snuffed. Now, what about the dance playlist? No need to sift through your Spotify in vain—your song choices can be both feminist and rockin'. 

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Woke Wednesday // Meet Ashley Gaffney Design Studio

Woke Wednesday // Meet Ashley Gaffney Design Studio

Liz: I love that. When you speak of challenging clients, are you challenging them in specifically creative/design ways? Or are you willing to challenge client's assumptions around race, gender, sexuality, etc.?

Ashley: Yes. I'm constantly fighting the fight to change people's perspectives about people and how we approach them. Talk to them. Have a conversation with them. I speak of "target markets" in regards to connection points. They can be purple, gay, short, whatever...if a person connects to your message, it's because it's been crafted in authenticity, and their micro-qualities don't dictate generality. And the message part is indifferent...truly it's about authentic connections, no matter the person's make-up.

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Wedding Inspiration // Bohemian Elopement with One on the Way

Wedding Inspiration // Bohemian Elopement with One on the Way

When Brittany and Alex, owners of SCULPTEDFILMS learned that their family will be expanding come this July, they knew that they had to expand their business as well, because a triple-faceted business is hard enough for a two-person team without anticipating a birth in the middle of wedding season. Cue their new, fabulous second shooter, Brianna, who photographed this shoot. As an exercise to train Brianna, and to show off some SCULPTEDFLORALS, we put this elopement inspiration shoot together about as spontaneously as a real elopement might happen.

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10 Wedding Desserts That Will Rock Your World

10 Wedding Desserts That Will Rock Your World

If you're like us, you've been watching the Great British Bake Off in lieu of going to therapy. Well let the dessert therapy continue because we've got ten wedding desserts that are going to knock your socks off! These desserts come to you from some of the most talented teams of creatives across the country who competed in this year's Out of the Box Challenge. Without further ado, let's have a look at our favorites in reverse order:

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Wedding Inspiration // Moody New Orleans Witches + Woo Woo

Wedding Inspiration // Moody New Orleans Witches + Woo Woo

I love that Wicca is having a moment in popular culture again, so for this shoot Kelsey Harrison of Oh Happy Day Booth and I wanted to highlight the bold and moody glamour of 21st century witches. We didn’t want to be too on-the-nose, so when styling I layered in the witchy elements: a crystal in Drew’s boutonniere; pheasant feathers in Marquita’s bouquet; sage burning; and a bar cart equipped with mounted butterflies, various crystals, and candles. Diana Ascarrunz captured the desired aesthetic perfectly and Lizbeth Mejorado transformed the already stunning Marquita Wolber into a bewitching Beyoncé. The stars certainly aligned for this shoot. 

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Out of the Box Challenge // Rebel Creatives AKA Love Wins!

Out of the Box Challenge // Rebel Creatives AKA Love Wins!

Our shoot, entitled “Love Wins,” is an awesomely eclectic, reimagined concept derived after the 2017 presidential inauguration. Our original shoot concept and date was derailed by the protests and marches that overshadowed the inaugural festivities. But instead of sulking and complaining, we used the current political climate to inspire our finished story.

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Flashback to the First {un}convention

Flashback to the First {un}convention

Before liz and carly were liz+carly, they were just two lone islands in a sea of chevron paper goods. Both otherwise practical people, their soft spot for photographing (carly) and coordinating (liz) lovely events brought them somewhat reluctantly into the dreaded Wedding Industrial Complex. They were surrounded by couples chasing the dragon of The Perfect Wedding (TM) and a vendor culture invested in keeping that carrot dangling. When they found each other, it was love at first sight. Together, they vowed to build a community for like-minded professionals straddling the line between participating in and critiquing weddings: {un}convention was born.

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Out of the Box Challenge // Richmond Association of Boss Babes AKA Girls! Girls! Girls!

Out of the Box Challenge // Richmond Association of Boss Babes AKA Girls! Girls! Girls!

Our goal for this shoot was to have fun and highlight color and love! Our theme was Girls! Girls! Girls!, and we were able to put together an amazing team of women, The Richmond Association of Boss Babes. We thought, what would a real life couple do when they woke up together on the day of their wedding? Morning sex, obviously! Boudoir images are usually just of one woman, and even less often do you see images of lesbian boudoir featuring an actual couple. We wanted to capture our girls in their element, being themselves together, whether that was dressed or undressed.

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Elopement Inspiration // Ska, Psychobilly, + Punk Rock

Elopement Inspiration // Ska, Psychobilly, + Punk Rock

The inspiration for this shoot came, for the most part, from my own personal experiences. I knew that I wanted to embrace the romance of an elopement (my husband and I eloped!) and that I wanted to showcase the beauty of unconventionality by adding subcultural elements. I wanted there to be courtship and passion without losing a sense of self; I wanted there to be strength and individuality as well without losing the aspect of soft femininity. Three of my favorite styles of fashion and music are 1960-1970s ska (Rudies), psychobilly, and punk rock; this was the driving force behind making my vision a reality. There are no fancy venues or elaborate décor here. This is meant to be the down-to-earth, private, backyard celebration you’d love to have with the people closest to you.

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Wedding Inspiration // Best Friends in Love: Cammie + Marie

Wedding Inspiration // Best Friends in Love: Cammie + Marie

These ladies are a beautiful couple madly in love. They were just friends for years, both dating other people. When they both found themselves single, a love blossomed. Both are simply divine people...and both are hilarious. The shoot was a blast. Cammie is a coach and is back in school. Marie is an area food safety and nutrition agent. They live together in a cute lil' house in Greenville, South Carolina.

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Out of the Box Challenge // Two for Joy AKA "Shut the fuck up!"

Out of the Box Challenge // Two for Joy AKA "Shut the fuck up!"

We met in person for drinks and were unanimously feeling we had picked the perfect couple. Our first evening together was spent listening to stories of their meeting: an almost-missed connection, driving hours to meet halfway for a first date, facing a fear of heights, falling in love, moving to the same city, revisiting the first date and Carolina’s fear of heights during the proposal (“I still don’t know what the view looks like.”). We felt that Sarah's entire body seemed to smile while talking about Carolina, and Carolina's deep, soulful smile and tenderness toward her future bride were qualities we couldn't wait to convey.

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Elegant Industrial Wedding Inspiration in Arizona

Elegant Industrial Wedding Inspiration in Arizona

Have you ever Googled “beautiful weddings"? You know what comes up? Pages and pages of white couples and maybe an Asian couple for good measure. But there is very little that speaks to a black bride and groom. When I see this, I am saddened. I think of when I was a young girl and did not see much that represented or looked like me. Black men and women get married, too!

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