• Welcome to the David Lynn Blog! Here you can share in our lives as a husband and wife photography team and absolutely smitten parents of two. We're both humbled and honored to capture some of life’s most intimate moments, and here we share the stories behind each one. We don’t want to just talk at you, we want to talk with you… so please feel free to connect with us through your favorite social media and add to the discussion. A life worth living is a life worth sharing! We would love to hear from you!

    Dave & Lynn

    Proud to be Preferred Photographers for ~ Devil's Thumb Ranch, Della Terra Mountain Chateau, Granby Ranch, Mt. Princeton Hot Springs, Ten Mile Station in Breckenridge

guerts family – colorado family photography

There are some sessions that just have magic infused in them. It is the combination of incredible people, breathtaking scenery, and gorgeous golden light that brings it all together. Our session with the Guerts family was just this. I loved their idea to go to a place that was very meaningful to them and bring their instruments along. Their beautiful singing voices, accompanied by deep family love and a true connection with mother nature put us in absolute heaven. I love when people are open to letting their souls shine through a session, and this is just what they did- thank you for letting us capture this moment in time!

 

The Checklist Before the Checklist

So you got engaged!? Congratulations! Deciding to spend the rest of your life with someone you love is a HUGE deal. It doesn’t matter how many people before you have been engaged, and how many people after you will be engaged ~ it’s so very unique and special and it can be such an exciting time in your life. So, you pop the champagne, celebrate with your loved ones and take some time to bask in this beautiful moment.

But what comes next?

So often we focus on what to do when you start planning your wedding. What vendors should you get in touch with? How do you choose flowers, centerpieces, invitations, cake, photographers, etc.! But what about right after you get engaged? How do you even start to conceptualize your wedding and what you want it to be. Before getting swept up in all the details and stages of planning, is there a way to decide how you want your wedding day to feel? Setting the tone of your wedding before you start planning will help keep you grounded and help you remember what really matters on your big day.

We still remember the special moments and details of our wedding and what meant the most to us. We also remember what we might have done differently – the aspects of planning that might have caused more stress than joy. Using a “checklist before the checklist” can help keep you on track to pull off the wedding that you really want. The wedding that feels like you…

Here are a few of the tips we’ve come up with through planning our own wedding and 12 years of photographing them:

Season – do you and your fiancé love the fall colors, snow white winters, spring sunshine or summer fun? Choosing a season for your wedding should be about what speaks to you and your relationship. You can have a beautiful wedding in any season, so choose the one you love the most.

Mood – do you envision a relaxed bbq, a formal affair or a boozy brunch? You can set the mood of your wedding before planning a single detail. This will also be essential for your planning process. Once you set the mood, you can start envisioning the décor, music, food and more!

Size – the size of your wedding will help determine your budget AND the atmosphere of your wedding. Whether you decide to go big or keep it intimate, so much of the day will be wrapped up in the people that are there.

Style – the style of your wedding will help you choose the centerpieces, the dress, the flowers, and more importantly – the venue. What style do you connect with – rustic, urban, elegant, boho or perhaps themed?

Wedding Party – the people you surround yourself with on your wedding day will be your support system. Choose the people you love, the people you can’t imagine standing up there without!

Organization – keeping everything organized and following a timeline is necessary during this process. Choose a system that works best for you. Do you keep folders? Do you print out a checklist via Pinterest? Maybe you like digital checklists? There are so many avenues for organization so just pick which suits you.

The Italy Photo Experience!

DETAILS & BOOKING

Picture yourself…
Standing right here, camera in hand, overlooking one of the most quintessential Tuscan cities in all of Italy, having the photo experience of a lifetime!

With the beautiful, artistic cultural center of Florence as your home base for the week…
Travel with David & Lynn, your personal photography instructors. We’ll wander the streets of Florence and the Tuscan countryside, soak in the Italian culture, perfect photo techniques, and capture fantastic images.

The Authentic Italian Villa Experience.
Our home for the week will be the amazing Residenza Il Palmerino: a centuries-old, family-owned villa in the gorgeous hills just outside of Florence.  With a relaxed vibe and Italian old-world charm, Palmerino is a completely unique lodging experience.  Our gracious host, Federica Parretti, will make you feel completely at home, with cozy accommodations and truly delicious, authentic italian cuisine all week long!

Visit photo locations chosen by the pros.
We’ll be taking photo day trips around the region, and show you gorgeous Tuscan sunset locations that will be the highlight of your photo portfolio!  We’ll also include night photography sessions throughout the week, teaching simple techniques to create magical images.

Travel with your own personal photography coaches!
David & Lynn will be along for each day’s adventure to provide customized instruction throughout your time in Italy. We combine classroom sessions at the Villa with day trips throughout the region for a comprehensive workshop to fill your mind and soul!

Did someone say italian cooking?
One of the highlights of the week is our day dedicated to the art of italian cooking!  We’ll visit a local market as our chef instructor chooses ingredients for our evening meal.  Then, we’ll return to the Villa and get our hands in some traditional cooking!  During the class, we’ll also have a mini session on food photography, helping you learn how to make your food photos pop!

Did someone say wine?
A trip to Italy isn’t complete until you’ve tasted the wines!  We’ll visit a winery local to the Florentine region of Tuscany, learn all about the history, sip on some of the very best wines, and photograph gorgeous scenery.

Your Hosts & Instructors – David & Lynn

Limited Time Offer!
Book your spot on our Florence & Tuscany Photo Workshop by May 1st, and receive a FREE 2-hour Photography Class anytime before the trip to refresh you skills!

DETAILS & BOOKING

stacy + sam – denver engagement photography

What an awesome day! Sam comes from a big, wonderful Italian family that we’ve known and had the pleasure of photographing for years – so we were beyond thrilled when Stacy and Sam asked us to photograph their wedding. We fell in love with Stacy the moment we met her and just adore the two of them together. We had so much fun walking around Clear Creek History Park and playing with their 3 adorable pups. We can’t wait for their  Raccoon Creek wedding in October!

Wedding photojournalism

The Art of Being a Fly on the Wall

In the world of wedding photography, there are terms to describe all of the many different styles of photography. One genre of styles is photojournalism, which umbrellas other descriptive terms such as “documentary” and “journalistic” as it translates to wedding photography.  Some photographers want to be involved every step of the way on a wedding day, orchestrating the events of the day to cater to the photographs needed.  Photojournalists tend to work in the opposite way. Instead, they prefer to stay removed from the action, let events unfold organically, and document them artistically.  They want to be the fly on the wall that goes unnoticed.

The Benefits.  While there is certainly a time and place for orchestrating photo opportunities (during the family group photos, or photos of just the bride & groom on the wedding day, for example), mostly what a photojournalist wants to do is hang back, be invisible, and photograph what happens naturally. It allows for genuine, unstaged moments and emotions, and lets the photographer truly express themselves through their art of storytelling…which is hopefully the reason they were hired in the first place.  This style can be the most difficult, because it requires them to be non-intrusive and have the ability to deftly step in, guide and orchestrate at those times it is required, all while allowing  your photojournalistic style to shine through.  It’s a tricky balance that is accomplished only by shooting many weddings, mastering your skill, defining your style, and developing a seamless, wedding day shooting flow.

Shooting organically not only allows for genuine, unstaged moments and emotions, but it also provides a more “storytelling” collection of images. It allows the photographer to develop the story of the wedding day expressed through their images – the main goal of any wedding photojournalist.  From the wedding couples’ perspective, it’s often recommended to give your photographer a shot list of must-have images for the collection.  While this is a great way to convey to the photographer what they’re looking for, many couples don’t take into account that for a documentary style photographer, too lengthy a shot list can stifle the freedom of creativity that he/she thrives on, allowing them to produce an overall better image collection as a result.  A balance between the shot list and the art form is a must.  An open dialogue between client and photographer about expectations on this topic will make everyone happy before, during and after the wedding.

Preparation. There is a lot of back-end preparation a photographer does before a wedding. There has to be knowledge of everything involved in the wedding day: venue locations, the key vendors involved, key images desired by the couple, complete gear preparation and backups. There also has to exist the kind of knowledge that only comes from experience. As photographers, we have to know when and where to be at all times in order to capture the best possible images for each and every part of the day, all while remaining unobtrusive, discreet, and “invisible” as possible. This delicate dance is constant throughout the day, as the events of the story we tell with our camera never stops. There is always something there to include in an image that adds to the experience of the day: a kid sitting on a chair yawning from boredom as guests mingle before the ceremony, and countless subtle interactions between friends and family, a deer wandering in a field behind the ceremony site. Our job is to be looking for these moments and capture them with an artful eye, always being in the right place at the right time.

Lens & Gear Choice. Knowing what lens to use and when is key for shooting weddings, and experienced photographers will know exactly what lens can make the best image for them at any moment. We can use a wide angle lens – 16-35mm f2.8L is our favorite – that shows the environment and surroundings of a ceremony venue, then use a zoom lens to get in tight and show the bride and groom’s reactions as they are announced as “Mr. & Mrs” and walk down the aisle.  Most photographers also have a mid-range zoom like the 24-70mm f2.8L as an all purpose lens that covers a variety of scenes throughout the day.

A wide angle lens is a must to capture the environment and give a sense of place to the image, while a zoom lens is an incredible tool that lets you capture only the key details you want in the scene.

The zoom lens can let you get in close and not only isolate the subject, but also isolate the feeling and emotion in the image.

Of all the lenses in our kit, the one that lends itself so well to photojournalism is the 70-200mm f2.8L. It’s zoom range allows for close proximity shots when you don’t have a lot of room to work with, and we can also use the full focal length to zoom in close to capture moments that happen farther away. Photojournalism often requires you to be as nonintrusive as possible, and that’s exactly what the 70-200mm lens allows. We strive for our wedding images to reflect genuine emotions, and we can capture that by being at a distance, yet photographing those interactions up close. Most people act quite differently or “put on” when they realize they’re being photographed, and the zoom lens allows you to stay relatively unnoticed.  Our favorite compliment is always something along these lines: “I love this image and I didn’t even realize you guys were there!”

There are increasingly more and more options being produced for photographers to lighten their gear load (you can read our gear list at the end of this article), including “all-in-one” focal length lenses (28-300mm, 18-250mm for example), and even high-end quality, compact cameras with multiple lenses built in, like the technology being produced at Light.

Light.  We can’t discuss photography without talking about light!  Photojournalism is all about capturing things as they are, so the journalistic style of photography will not be flooded with flash photography stills of the couple and their guests.  Instead, natural light is the most important tool of the photojournalist.  Any wedding photographer needs to be constantly aware of the lighting conditions – full sun, mix of sun & clouds, light overcast, heavy overcast, incandescent, flourescent or CFL bulbs, candlelight, backlight, sidelight, broad light…the list goes on and on and sometimes it’s a mix of two or many of these types of conditions.  Knowing how the light affects your exposures and lens choice is something that needs to be mastered.  There are many photographers that will just rely on their flash to negate any tough lighting conditions, and while that is an easy solution, it won’t produce a natural looking collection of images that a photojournalist wants to create.  Even when lighting conditions are too tough for natural light photography (moody, dimly lit reception venues are a perfect example), if the use of flash is needed, we always try to use techniques with directional lighting and off camera flash to produce as beautiful & natural looking images as possible.

Tips for shooting like a Fly on the Wall:

1. Prepare:  Know your surroundings, know the timeline, know all the key players involved so you can concentrate on documenting the day.

2. Lens Choice:  Have a variety of lenses to choose from, and know the situations where you’ll need to use each one. Train yourself to capture different angles and perspectives of the same scene.

3. Anticipate:  Learn to look for interactions between people and aniticpate where and when they will occur (ie – watch the bride/groom parents’ reactions during the vows), and be ready for key events of the day and put yourself in the optimal position to get the shots you want.  Be aware of your surroundings and environment and plan for how to incorporate those elements in your images.

Gear Bag.
Here’s a list of the key pieces of our kit, not including backup cameras, cables, filters, batteries and other accessories.
Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 24-70mm f/2.8
Canon 16-35mm f/2.8
Canon 70-200mm f/2.8
Canon 85mm f/1.8
Canon 580 EXII flashes
Pocket Wizard radio transmitters
LED video lights

 

Happy shooting!!

David Townsend – David Lynn Photography