Archive for the ‘Portraits’ Category

Screen Shot 2013-06-07 at 9.38.42 PMAfter four years here, I’ve just launched my shiny new blog on my even shinier new web site. You can find all of my work here: www.jennifermcmenamin.com 




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When I get into the busy shooting season packed with weddings and portrait sessions, it’s sometimes difficult to find time to keep up my blog. My portrait sessions almost never get posted publicly. But as I print schedules and clean gear and get ready for Steph & Chris’s wedding today, I wanted to post a few favorites from their lovely engagement session earlier this year. We hit a ton of different spots in Annapolis, giving their engagement photos several distinctly different ‘looks.’ They were so easy to work with and so wonderful together. And I just love love one image in particular with a serendipitous element that was pointed out to me by Steph’s father. (More on that in a minute.) I can’t wait to work with them again — and both of their families — today at the wedding!

Steph has such a great smile — and a wonderful laugh. It makes her very fun to photograph!

I love a good snuggle photo.

Now for that photo with the serendipitous element. Steph and I had been hoping for great weather with gorgeous sunset light for their engagement session. Instead, it was overcast and threatening rain all day. We decided not to reschedule, in part, because of her crazy busy work schedule as a nurse. When we came upon a big puddle near the end of our session, I was excited to make a couple of fun photos for them that used their reflection and the bright green umbrella that they had bought after seeing our forecast for the day. A few weeks after my engagement session with Steph and Chris, I received an e-mail from her father, a prosecutor and Catholic deacon whom I knew from my previous job as a newspaper reporter covering the Baltimore County court system. “Your photos are fabulous,” he wrote. “Take a look at #195.  The reflection in the rain puddle displays a cross between the faces of Chris and Steph.” Quite accidental. But I loved the image even more after it was pointed out to me!

Cheers to you, Steph & Chris. And happy wedding day! See you soon.

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I can usually learn a lot about what it will be like to work with a couple for their wedding photography during their engagement session. As I tell my clients — particularly those who would like to use their engagement session as a chance to “warm up” in front of the camera before their wedding — engagement sessions are a lot more work for them than wedding-day photography. On their wedding day, they’ll be jumping-out-of-their-skin excited and their emotions will be right on the surface. The smiles and the kisses and the tender moments will come so naturally, it’s like breathing. At an engagement session, there are strangers walking by wondering why you’re being photographed. (It’s obvious when you’re in a wedding gown or tux!) There are moments when you’ll wonder what to do with your hands (bouquets are good for this on the wedding day!) and how to stand. Essentially, it might be a little more work to look as loving and into each other as most couples would like to look in their engagement photos. However, I could tell right away that Melissa and Mike will be nothing but fun on their wedding day. We met one crisp fall morning at sunrise to catch the golden glowy light in one of their favorite parts of the city without encountering the bajillion people who are typically there later in the day. They brought along their rambunctious pup Mason for some of the photos. And we had great fun together. There was *lots* of easy laughter and smiles during this shoot! I’m so excited to work with them again TODAY at their wedding! Here are some of my favorites from our morning together last fall:

Nothing can beat the warm golden glow of sunrise or sunset. There is no post-processing that makes up for the real thing.

Wardrobe change!

I love how easy and affectionate they were with one another.

I love shooting little series of images on a wedding day to capture the string of emotions and glances between a couple. But I love them during engagement sessions as well. A few frames in a row can say so much about a couple and their relationship. Like the obvious playfulness in this next series between Melissa and Mike.

Or this next fun little series: Mike gently touches his forehead to Melissa’s. He catches my eye and flashes a cheesy, yeah-this-is-what-you-do-in-an-engagement-portrait-session thumbs up-exaggerated wink combo. And Melissa responds accordingly. So fun!

And lastly, a little fun with shadows. With the curves and detailing of the wall behind them, I think the shadows resemble chess pieces. Just a little something different!

It was an absolute pleasure working with you, Melissa and Mike (and, of course, Mason). I’ll see you soon soon soon!

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When I get into the busy shooting season packed with weddings and portrait sessions, it’s sometimes difficult to find time to do anything but shoot, edit, deliver images and tend to my marvelous clients. My blog occasionally suffers. And my portrait sessions almost never get posted publicly. This year, I had the added joy of a new baby joining our family — and sweetly wreaking havoc on my schedule. But as I print schedules and clean gear and get ready for Sara and Mike’s wedding tomorrow, I wanted to post a few favorites from their lovely sunrise engagement session earlier this year. Not only were we graced with the gorgeous glowy light that makes getting up so early worth it, we also got to see the moon rising up into the predawn sky. Sara and Mike, you were so much fun that chilly April morning. I can’t wait to work with you both again tomorrow!

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I have not been good about blogging my engagement sessions. At all. But this was one of my favorites from last year. And since Ali & Tommy are getting married tomorrow (!), I thought I’d post a quick little blog entry from their session while I’m printing schedules for their big day and reformatting memory cards. I first met Tommy in my previous career as a newspaper reporter and writer. I covered courts and crime and the death penalty. He is a prosecutor. Fast forward several years to April of 2011: I was thrilled to get an e-mail from Ali, who introduced herself, shared the exciting news that she and Tommy were engaged and inquired about what dates in May of 2012 I might be available for their not-yet-scheduled wedding. It’s been so much fun getting to know the both of them a bit more as they finalized their plans. We shot their engagement photos at sunrise on a crisp, clear October morning. A few of my favorites:

This is the light that we photographers haul ourselves — and our clients — out of bed for early in the mornings. Many thanks to Ali & Tommy for being so game to join me!

Ali has the most striking, gorgeous eyes. I can’t wait to photograph her in all of her wedding finery!

Sunrise sessions are also good for making sure the streets are empty enough for images like this next one.

A perfect location for a prosecutor: Sitting on the steps of the old police station that was used in filming Homicide.

It is always such a joy to photograph couples who have such an easy way with each other. Ali & Tommy — or Alitommy, as my 2-year-old Molly refers to them — I can’t wait to see you tomorrow and photograph your wedding!

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I recently had a real treat of a job — shooting portraits of a little girl at the Baltimore Basilica in advance of her First Communion. Abigail’s mother — the friend of past wedding and portrait clients of mine — first contacted me about photographing her daughter’s actual First Communion. I have photographed those very special ceremonies for the last couple years at my own church and always love documenting cute kids in their Sunday finest becoming fuller members of the church. But I am booked to shoot a wedding on the day of Abigail’s First Communion, so her mother brilliantly suggested that we meet at the Basilica — the site of her own wedding — for some portraits a few weekends early. We did — and we couldn’t have had more fun. Whether lighting a candle for Mary with her mom, examining her rosary or twirling in her pretty white dress, Abigail was just darling. Here are just a few of my favorites from our afternoon together:

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