Design | AACA 2010-2011 Arts Guide

For the second year in a row I was privileged to design the Arts Guide for the Athens Area Council for the Arts. Last year I began my design relationship with the Arts Center & we had such a fun year rockin’ out projects . I was honored to receive an Addy Award for the 2009-2010 Arts Guide so this year I had to step up my game even more. And, in my opinion, this year’s guide is a huge step forward. I’ve been itching to share this year’s design on my blog & since they were mailed out this week I am finally able to do so. I decided to focus this year’s work on designing a brochure that appeals to families & is somewhat humorous. And since I enjoy all things vintage, there are retro televisions on just about every page… and polaroids… what’s not to love about polaroids! Love it! So, if you love it too, leave me a comment & let me know what you think!

And by the way, if you’ve yet to attend an event at the Arts Center, you are missing out on some seriously fun times with great peeps. I will definitely see you there. Oh, & in case you didn’t know it, when working on design projects I work under my code-name “The Visible Group.” It’s kind of like my nom de plume or pen name. It’s my way of keeping people guessing… ha!

The McDonalds | Family Session

What a blessing & privilege to live close to family. My sister, Amy, & I have always been close & she is someone I will always look up to. She & her husband, Travis, are some of our closest friends. Amy works at home & part-time in pharmaceutical sales; she is easily one of the hardest working people I’ve ever met. And, no doubt, she is well beyond giving & generous. Seriously, our boys are almost exclusively clothed in hand-me-downs from her kids. Her husband, Travis, practices Optometry in town & has a knack for business. He pursues everything with excellence & has become a great friend. Plus, they have two wild little boys. Hunter, age 4, is their oldest. He is a super-smart kiddo with an ability to talk non-stop & ask questions much more profound than you’d imagine. One of my favorite stories of Hunter is when he was 3 years old & riding in the car with my dad. He turned & asked grandaddy a question which resulted in a long answer. Hunter interrupted him, “Grandaddy, all I want is a yes or no!” Ha!!! Chase, age, 2, is 110% boy; he’s certainly the second child. He thrives off adventure & is just plain tough; he takes a lickin’ & keeps on tickin.’ He has a mischievous look on his face about 90% of the time… love it.

I went out to the McDonalds’ farm the other day & spent some time capturing this season of life. Although it must’ve been 100 degrees by 9am, we still had a great time running around. Plus, the sunflowers were in season which were the perfect backdrop.

Hunter Benjamin McDonald
William Chase McDonald with dad, Travis.
Travis just completed building a play house for the boys… it’s big-time!
Amy & Travis.
I love this pic… Amy was saying to Chase, “Don’t you dare smile Chase!” This is his tough look… priceless.
So thankful for this family! Love you guys!

Sebastian Mayfield | Lifestyle Portraits

If you’ve lived anywhere in the Southeast United States then you’re likely familiar with Mayfield Dairy. It’s hard to beat their dairy products… especially ice cream & milk, all of which are packaged in their iconic yellow cartons. Mayfield Dairy began in 1910 in Athens, TN when TB Mayfield bought 45 jersey cows & began delivering milk to his customers. The rest is history & we’re proud of our hometown brand. I almost dare you to come to Athens & mention any other diary brand besides Mayfields… for us, there isn’t another option.

A week ago I was fortunate to spend some time at the home of Scottie & Lisa Mayfield with their grandson, Sebastian. Lisa had Sebastian for a few days & wanted to capture this fun stage of Sebastian’s life. Here’s a quick photographic recap of our great time together:

One of Sebastian’s favorite things to do is go for a ride in the stroller up & down the driveway. Isn’t their barn amazing!

At the mention of listening to music, Sebastian’s face lit up! (Below L), Sebastian loves pushing around an old leather “bull” ottoman (Below R).
His favorite place to read… I love how the book is upside down!
I lost count of how many times we ran up & down the hill in the backyard.
The Mayfield’s property is a photographer’s dream.
A love for ice-cream runs in the family! Must be pretty cool to know that you have a lifetime supply ahead of you!
A magazine from 1955 that features Mayfield Farms; the barn is on the cover.
Thanks Lisa & Sebastian! I had a great time!

Shelby & Jake | Athens, TN

I think one of the things I love most about photographing weddings is the opportunity to give of yourself… to offer your time, experience, creativity, your emotions; it’s an wonderfully exhausting experience. It’s refreshing to serve others… to pray for an anxious bride minutes before she walks down the aisle, to speak words of affirmation to a groom, to hug the bride’s mother as she is overcome with tears of joy, to shake the hand of a father who just gave away his daughter… it’s simply a beautiful thing. Then, while reviewing the images from the day, they bring to mind wonderful memories so you smile & breathe with great pleasure knowing your bride & groom will enjoy those images for a lifetime. You’ve played an important role in their lives they will never forget; it’s priceless.

I knew the first time I met with Shelby’s mom, Janette, that I was going to enjoy this couple. Shelby Mason was raised on a dairy farm in the hills between Athens & Niota, TN, so she’s familiar with hard work & life on the farm. She’s a country girl. And on Saturday, she married a laid-back country boy. Jake Roberts grew up in Phenix City, AL before playing football in college while attending the College of the South, Sewanee. He later began coaching football at Cumberland University where he met Shelby. They couldn’t be any more perfect for one another.

Shelby & Jake, I wish you two the absolute best. Thank you for the opportunity to be your photographer! And, here’s a peak from your wedding day:

We’ll start with a few images from the rehearsal. I don’t usually shoot rehearsals but we were unable to do a pre-wedding shoot so I was more than happy to attend their rehearsal. It was so much fun & allowed me an opportunity to get to know the wedding party ahead of time. Plus, I was able to capture some of the personal touches that go into the rehearsal dinner.

Following the rehearsal at Keith Church, the dinner took place at the Mason Farm; what a fun place!

Shelby was overcome with emotion as her guests formed a circle around she & Jake while her dad offered a blessing over their marriage.
A good friend & musician, JT Tallent, offered his incredible song, “With You.” You can listen to it via YouTube by clicking here.
Guests watched a moving slideshow of Shelby & Jake’s story.
And here’s my favorite part… the wedding day! Shelby’s dress is in a league of its own.

Black’s Florist did an incredible job with the floral arrangements.
I noticed an incredible field just behind the reception site; it served as a perfect portrait location. What a gorgeous bride!
At one point Shelby said, “Am I supposed to be smiling?” I responded, “Shelby, it’s your wedding day! Of course.” She smiled the entire day!!
I am so thrilled by this picture… wow! There are several from this location that are my favorites!
The reception was held at the historic Keith Mansion. There’s hardly a better reception site in town. It’s owned by chef Paul Carideo & wife, Melanie, who are both a pleasure to work alongside. The bridesmaids spent the night prior to the wedding in the bed & breakfast & it’s interior is perfectly fit for portraits.
Love these moments!
These two absolutely light up when around one another… I can’t help but smile watching them interact.
This picture brought tears to my eyes & conjured up such emotion. The Roberts family had a special memorial candle in honor of Jake’s grandfather who recently passed. Alongside the candle was a picture of Jake & his grandfather. Here, Jake’s father pauses to remember his father; in the background, Jake’s mother is consoled by her sister.
What can I say, Shelby’s got a good arm. She overthrew the “single ladies”; it landed on top of the tent.
Decorations Creations provided the centerpieces for the reception. I loved how they floated pics from Shelby & Jake’s engagement session inside the centerpiece. MP Entertainment provided the music… they are always a pleasure to work alongside. Also, John David Boreing & his video team were awesome!
And yes… we danced to the music!
And yes… we photoboothed like crazy! Here are just some of the crazy shots. If you’d like to see all the pics from Shelby & Jake’s photobooth, check out my Facebook page by clicking here. If you “like” BF Photo, you will be notified via FB when we post pics of our recent shoots. As always, a special thanks to the ladies who helped me capture this day, Lillian Prince & Alison Nation, you’re awesome! You must check out Lillian’s awesome coverage here.

If you’d like to pre-register to see all the pictures from Shelby & Jake’s wedding, click here & you’ll be notified when they are available. Hope you enjoyed… there’s so much more!

Meredith & Jason | Knoxville, TN

Far from the norm is the best way to describe Meredith & Jason’s wedding day. And that, precisely, is what made it memorable. It’s not everyday you see the bride sporting converse all-stars with pink sunglasses while her bridesmaids follow suit. And just when you least expect it, the Black-eye Peas smash hit “I Gotta’ Feelin!” is bumpin’ across the sanctuary while the bridal party dances their way down the aisle. Even the pastor sported his Oakley sunglasses. Here are just a few details from Saturday’s wedding:

That’s what I call rock & roll! Meredith sported her off-white Chucks while the bridesmaids wore hot-pink all-stars with black laces; they even had their initials embroidered on the heels.
Ain’t no wedding like a Jason & Meredith Crabtree wedding!
The reception was held at Knoxville’s Art Emporium on Gay Street. It’s a great reception location for a small wedding party & the artsy feel really adds to the atmosphere.
I’ll have to go with Sweet Tea… unless the Unsweet tea has lots of sugar in it! You get my point!