Posts in helpful hints
What I learned being in front of the lens for a boudoir session | Washington DC wedding photographer

I'm a big believer in boudoir as an incredibly powerful and empowering experience. I've both photographed boudoir for friends and clients, and gotten in front of the lens myself. Months ago, I decided to schedule a boudoir photo session. It was a deeply liberating, and empowering, and also heartbreaking experience. I am so incredibly glad to have…

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10 tips for picking an engagement session location | helpful hints

Engagements sessions! I love them! Why? They document a particular time in your lives and help me get to know you better! If we're going to all the effort to do an engagement session, why not make sure it's extra-awesome and really reflects the two of you as a couple? The very best way to do that is with your engagement session LOCATION! Tons of my couples turn to me for advice on where to shoot their engagement session, and I LOVE to help. Not sure where to start in choosing your own location? Here's the advice I give my couples and the questions I ask...

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8 day-of timeline tips to keep your wedding day stress-free | helpful hints series

One of the most crucial elements to making sure your wedding day goes off without a hitch is your day-of timeline. This is the (literally) minute-by-minute schedule breakdown from waking up all the way through reception cleanup.  It's the MASTER PLAN that keeps EVERYONE, from you, to your mom, to your wedding party, to your caterer and photographer, all on the same page. And the more everyone is on the same page, the less stressed YOU will be on your wedding day!  With that in mind, here are 8 small day-of timeline tips to make your wedding day less stressful!

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Why you should make room for an album in your wedding photography budget | helpful hints series

When my wedding day comes, I want an album. I want the physical experience for the rest of my life of paging through photos that evoke every feeling, moment, taste, and smell of that day. 

I want you to have that too.  

I want you to have a physical reminder of this day, as a ritual of life and a symbol of marriage.

I know, professional wedding albums are expensive, and you're already stretching your budget as it is to make the most of your day. I know. You have to weigh so many things for your wedding day, and prioritize

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6 secrets to success for bringing your dog to your engagement photo session | helpful hints series

If you're engaged, and your family-of-two is actually a family-of-three with your furry, four-legged friend, it's natural to want to include them in your engagement session! Incorporating your dog into your engagement session is awesome, and when my clients ask if it's okay to do, my answer is a resounding "yes!"

That said, preparing for a successful engagement session with your pup is a little bit more complex than leaving them at home. So if you're looking at bringing Roxy or Pumpkin or Shadow or Fido to your engagement session, here are my 6 time-tested secrets to it being a successful experience for everyone involved, from couple, to pup, to photographer!

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helpful hintsAimee Custis
Holiday gift guide: Ideas from 3 creative entrepreneurs I love

Okay, now that I'm a grownup this always happens, but holy cow, where-did-fall-go-and-how-is-it-already-basically-the-holiday-season?! This week, the Rising Tide Society (I'll blog about this amazing group someday soon, I swear!) released its holiday gift guide of items from makers + artisans who are part of the group. That got me thinking, what small, creative businesses do I want to support this season with my gifting purchases?

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helpful hintsAimee Custis
So you want to buy a DSLR: camera recommendations for beginners | helpful hints series

Four times this year, I've been asked by my amazing clients questions about camera-buying like this one, from Mike:

We're thinking about buying a good beginner's camera, possibly a DSLR. Do you have any recommendations?

Yes, yes I sure do! So you're thinking about buying your first DSLR camera. Congratulations! Yes, if you know what you're doing, you can take a great picture with a terrible camera. But while you don't need the gear that Kian and I have, having a decent camera and a basic working knowledge of what you've got makes it a LOT easier.

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helpful hintsAimee Custis
Should I do a first look? Things to consider for your DC wedding day-of schedule | helpful hints series

Many of my couples are the alternative, DIY-spirited type, and so I often find myself working directly with with the bride and groom to take a hand in shaping their wedding day-of schedule. I love that spirit! But since the vast majority of my couples are planning a wedding for the first time, they usually have lots of questions about how to plan out their day. From a photography standpoint, there are two big up-front considerations that usually dictate what the day will look like...

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    helpful hints, weddingsAimee Custis