engagement Uncategorized

Blacksburg, VA Engagement – Meredith & Patrick

I’ve developed quite a backlog of images this summer, due to a combination of a lot of shooting and a lot of vacationing.  I’ve been looking forward to this post for a long time, though.  Meredith and Patrick are getting married in less than one week, so I guess I’m just in time!

Click the photo to see their set.

When I met Meredith and Patrick, I liked them immediately.  They are both architects and were interested in low-key, artistic, candid photography – pretty much straight photojournalism.  They seemed hip and artistic themselves, so I knew I could probably try some more daring images with these two.  When they suggested the location – just around their neighborhood in Blacksburg – I was thrilled.  No joke.  I do a lot of shoots in beautifully groomed parks, overlooks, landmarks, etc.  I knew that traipsing around the residential areas of Blacksburg to find good spots would be a really fun challenge.

P.S. Right now I am in New York City -best place in the world – in my brother-in-law’s Brooklyn apartment.  Coincidentally, he and his wife are ALSO both architects and ALSO got married on July 24!  I think this is probably good luck.

Back to Patrick and Meredith… we started at their house, where they often sit on the porch together.  Their house is really cute, especially on the inside.  I was drawn immediately to the fireplace, which has lots of photos of the two of them and their travels.  Meredith has a knack for framing pictures in a really clean, modern way, but still with a lot of character.  I really, reeeeeeeeeally love this set of images, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that one or two will end up on their mantel, in one of her pretty frames.

engagement pictures blacksburg va portrait photography

I love this shot of Patrick laughing.

engagement pictures blacksburg va wedding photography

engagement pictures blacksburg va portrait photography

engagement pictures blacksburg va wedding photography

engagement pictures blacksburg va wedding photography

engagement pictures blacksburg va wedding photography

The next photo of Meredith is one of my favorites, and due to a new culling/marking method I was trying, it almost got left out of the set!   I just love how soft the colors turned out, even with very little editing.  This is an example of why I usually shoot in the late evening (or early morning) – the light is so soft and perfect, even if it’s hot.

engagement pictures blacksburg va wedding photography

engagement pictures blacksburg va wedding photography

I think their expressions in this one are so cute.

engagement pictures blacksburg va wedding photography

engagement pictures blacksburg va wedding photography

engagement pictures blacksburg va wedding photography

The next set of photos is a little more “artistic.”  We found a field overlooking some mountain views and I took the opportunity to practice a little free-lensing.  Free-lensing is when you actually detach the lens from the camera and hold it in your hand.  The advantage is that you can angle the lens to get unique blurriness and distortion – sort of like a poor man’s tilt-shift.  It’s really useful for adding an extra soft blur to the background (in this case, we were shooting by a new construction site, which is not necessarily very romantic), and for keeping only a small part (or none!) of the photo in focus, especially when combined with a narrow depth of field.  *If you want to see some GREAT free lensed work, check out Geneoh, a gifted young photographer based in Michigan.*

Most of my portraits are a bit more classic, and I don’t try freelensing with everyone. I figured two architects could pull it off and appreciate the result.

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures free lensed

Sometimes the edge of the lens accidentally gets in the frame and causes a big black curve.  I showed these to Meredith and explained that I could crop out the lens curve.  She replied, “I don’t know, I kind of like it!”  My kind of girl!

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures free lensed

engagement pictures blacksburg va wedding photography

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures free lensed

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures free lensed

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures free lensed

We really raced through this shoot.  Engagement sessions usually take about two hours.  In Meredith and Patrick’s case, they were ready to roll from the very beginning, and we knocked out ALL of the above photos in the span of 45 minutes or so.  Since we still had plenty of light, I suggested we go downtown to the Kent Square parking garage and try some more urban-style photos.

This next shot is one of my favorites of the year.  I love all the diagonal shadow lines and the soft colors of the concrete.

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures

(I really liked her shoes.)

OK, believe it or not, these next two images were not posed.  All I said was “stand apart and look at each other.”  They did the rest. I think they’re great.

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures

Sunset on a parking garage = beautiful light.

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures

blacksburg va wedding photography engagement pictures

Definitely one of my favorite sessions of the year.

And just think… this time next week, they’ll be married!

You Might Also Like

11 Comments

  • Reply
    Corey
    July 18, 2010 at 9:54 am

    Superb, as usual! I love your compositions! I also really liked your BW conversions… very, very well done!

  • Reply
    Shell Bailey
    July 18, 2010 at 12:20 pm

    I love the black and white shots! Great set.

  • Reply
    Chantal
    July 18, 2010 at 7:41 pm

    OKAY– love, love, love those parking garage shots.. such great light + lines. And the sidewalk ones. Waaaay cute.

  • Reply
    Lyn Ismael-Bennett
    July 18, 2010 at 8:12 pm

    Cute couple! Love the way you played with their shadows. Awesome set!

  • Reply
    Kyle
    July 18, 2010 at 9:34 pm

    They do look likable, and so adorable! Nice work!

  • Reply
    Jen Smith
    July 19, 2010 at 5:21 am

    Natalie, these are really great!! So much lovely light, and what a great mix of shots in such a short time! I have a feeling several of these will grace the couple’s home 🙂

  • Reply
    Timothy E Kaldas
    July 19, 2010 at 7:15 am

    Natalie, beautiful natural shoot. You did an excellent job bringing out their love in a familiar setting.

  • Reply
    Emily Porter
    July 19, 2010 at 7:48 am

    Your best work yet, absolutely lovely and inspiring. Very impressive. LOVE the shot of them sitting with the light coming through the windows. Love the shoe shot. Love the out of focus freelensing shot with her hand on his chest. I love all of your black and whites, esp the last one of them on the curb. Love them all. Amazing, fantastic set of photos.

  • Reply
    Bobby
    July 19, 2010 at 8:30 am

    These are absolutely gorgeous. You knocked this session out of the park.

  • Reply
    James Murphy
    July 19, 2010 at 9:48 am

    Nice set of images, great color and lighting. Love the parking garage photos the best, but they’re all good.

  • Reply
    Jenn
    July 26, 2010 at 11:17 am

    Beautiful. These turned out so great…and you can just see how happy they are!

  • Leave a Reply to Kyle Cancel Reply