Photographs don’t exist without light by Durango CO Photographers

My husband and I are Durango CO Photographers who love to photograph weddings, family portraits, high school seniors, and boudoir.

Bride and Groom after wedding elopement by Photographers in Durango CO, Durango CO Photographers, Durango Wedding Photographers

Bride and Groom sitting at judge’s desk

Do you know the meaning of the word “Photography”? It means painting or drawing with light. Without light, a photograph cannot exist. Lighting is a key factor in creating a successful image. Lighting determines not only brightness and darkness, but also tone, mood and the atmosphere. Therefore it is necessary to control and manipulate light correctly in order to get the best texture, vibrancy of color, and luminosity on your subjects.

Cutting the wedding cake by Photographers in Durango CO, Durango Wedding Photographers, Wedding Photographers in Durango CO, Durango CO Photographers

Bride and Groom cut the wedding cake

When photographing people, you want their faces to be the brightest part of the photograph so that your eye goes to them first. If the background is overly bright and the faces of the people are dark, your eye will be drawn to the background. You can use artificial light, as in a flash, or you can use natural light.

I find natural light much harder to work with because you’re dependent on the weather, the position of the sun, where you want the background, and of course many wedding receptions are at night. I almost always work with a flash attached to a stand with a large umbrella. This creates soft lighting on people’s faces and I can adjust my camera settings so the background is not overly bright.

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Wedding fun with sparklers and a lot of intoxicated guests

When I was studying photography, I was a bit surprised that math came into play. When using light, you have to use the “inverse square law”. This means that the strength of the light is inversely proportional to how far the subject is moved away from the light source. So if the light is close to the subject, they will be brighter, and if the light is moved further away, the subject will be darker. Determining the distance the light should be from the subject(s) is imperative to making great portraits.

I love the catch lights in the eyes when I use an umbrella. The eyes are the window to the soul, and without light, they look rather bland.

High school senior girl by river with fall colors by durango co photographers

Senior girl in white and black by the river with fall colors

Where the light is located is also important. I usually place the umbrella with the flash at about a 45 degree angle from the subject(s). If I’m doing a large group portrait, I’ll have my husband aim the umbrella at the furthest people so that everyone is lit evenly. These things take a lot of practice. Sometimes I like to have him hold the flash behind a wedding couple to create a silhouette, so there are artistic things you can also do with light. And every once in a while, I’ll have him hold the umbrella directly over my head for various reasons.

Wedding family portrait by durango photographers

Wedding family portrait

Reflection of bride and groom by durango co photographers

Bride and Groom with reflection in water

Silhouette of Bride and Groom with full moon by durango co photographers

Silhouette of Bride and Groom with a full moon

When I was taking photos of this high school senior girl, my flash didn’t go off for one of the pictures. That sometimes happens because it takes a couple of seconds for the flash to recycle and I took one of these too fast. This illustrates the difference between a photo taken in “natural light”, and one where a flash is used. I like having full control of the light when I’m photographing people. Can you see the difference?

See the Difference when using flash vs natural light by durango co photographers

1st photo using natural light, 2nd photo using flash

If you need a photographer for a wedding, family portrait, high school senior, or boudoir, get in touch with me for more information.

Thanks, Karen

Karen Skelly Photography

Durango CO Photographers

www.karenskellyphoto.com

karen@karenskellyphoto.com

970.884.5292

 

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Fall Portrait Clothing Ideas by Photographers in Durango CO

My husband, Ken, and I are photographers in Durango CO. We photograph families, high school seniors, weddings, and boudoir (well, I photograph Boudoir – the hubby goes somewhere else:).

Fall is the most popular time of year for family and high school senior portraits, and even for weddings. Everybody loves the brilliant yellows and reds that come along with the trees changing their colors. As photographers in Durango CO we also love the fall colors and suggesting clothing for those sessions is what we do so that your portraits turn out gorgeous.

These are a couple of photos showing a high school senior girl in a gray dress with a scarf, and another in a maroon sweater.

High School Senior girl with sign by durango photographers

Senior girl in gray dress with scarf

High School Senior girl with fall colors by photographers in durango co

Senior girl with maroon sweater and jeans

Here’s a couple of family portraits. The first one wasn’t actually taken in the fall, but the colors of their clothing is great. Blues, turquoise, green, maroon, purples, browns, and violets are awesome colors for fall portraits.

Family posing with mountains by durango photographers

Family in different complimentary colors

Family portrait in the fall by photographers in durango co

Family portrait with browns, golds, and maroons

Here’s another high school senior girl that dressed for success (haha) and for fall portraits.

high school senior girl with reflection in water by durango co photographers

High School senior girl dressed in tan, white, and maroon for fall portraits

High school senior girl by river with fall colors by durango co photographers

Senior girl in white and black by the river with fall colors

High School senior girl sitting on ground with fall leaves by durango photography

Senior girl in maroon and black with yellow fall leaves

I’m posting lots of family and senior photos taken during the fall because it’s always easier for people to envision their own portraits when they can see visual information. Here’s another family portrait taken with their six fur babies.

Family with their 6 fur babies by durango co photographers

Family in yellows and blues for their fall portraits

What I really love with family and senior portraits are when people use layering. Things like scarves, pretty sweaters or jackets, boots, and jewelry make those pictures so special. Here’s a few photos of clothing choices that I found on Pinterest.

 

Clothing ideas for fall portraits by durango co photographers

Neutral colors for fall portraits

Clothing choices for fall portraits by photographers in durango co

Clothing choices in blues, beiges, and browns

Fall portrait clothing choices by durango photography

Clothing choices in grays and violets

Fall clothing choices for portraits by durango co photographers

Clothing choices in golds, beiges, and maroons

When choosing your own clothing, lay them out on a bed to make sure the colors go well together. This is just a guide – you can choose the colors that you like.

Get in touch to set up your family or high school senior portrait by Photographers in Durango CO

Thanks, Karen

Karen Skelly Photography

Photographers in Durango CO

www.karenskellyphoto.com

karen@karenskellyphoto.com

970.884.5292

 

 

 

 

 

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Animas High School 2019 Graduation by Durango Photographers

My husband and I are Durango Photographers and every year we have the honor of photographing the graduating class of Animas High School. This is a great little school and the kids are super smart. The teachers do a lot of hands on work with the students out in the field so they learn with experience. This is from their website:

Animas High School prepares all students for college and post secondary success by creating critical thinkers and engaged citizens through an innovative, student-centered, project-based curriculum. We accomplish this through:

-Rigorous academics, where all students are prepared for college success
-Culture of excellence, where students are held to high expectations
-Strong faculty-student relationships, where students are well known
-Engaging learning, where students see the relevance of their education

AHS was founded in 2009 by community members who saw a need for a distinctive school of choice in the Four Corners region. An award-winning, free, public school chartered through the Colorado Charter School Institute, AHS serves approximately 250 students in grades 9-12 in Durango, Colorado.

Ken and I meet with all of the graduating students and a few of the teachers early in the morning so we can photograph the entire group with a beautiful backdrop of the Durango mountains. It can take 20 minutes to get all of the kids organized, and then 5 minutes to take the photographs. We take lots of photos because someone is always moving their head, eyes, or arms.

This is the group photo in the morning, along with a goofy photo that the kids like to do.

Graduation group photo by durango photographers

Animas High School Graduation Group photo

Goofing off during graduation photo by durango photographers

Goofing off during Graduation Photo

After the morning session with the students, we come back in the evening for the graduation ceremony which takes place at Ft Lewis College. It’s an absolutely magical evening because the kids are so happy and the families are so proud. Here’s a look at the stage and then the students throwing their caps.

Graduating students on stage at graduation by durango photographers

Students and teachers on stage during graduation ceremony

graduating students throwing caps by durango photographers

Graduating students throwing their caps in the air

We are located just off stage where there is a black curtain and as each student receives their diploma, they walk over to us and we snap photos of them with their diploma. This is one of them. Many of the parents purchase this “Memory Mate” that shows the group photo and the student photo along with their name, the year, and the school’s logo. I think it’s pretty cool.

Graduating student with their diploma by durango photographers

Graduating student with her diploma

Graduating group photo with student inset by durango photographers

Memory Mate with graduating group photo and student inset

Durango Photographers are available to do high school senior photos, weddings, family portraits, and other events.

Get in touch by phone at 970.884.5292 or email at karen@karenskellyphoto.com

This is our website www.karenskellyphoto.com

Thank you

Karen Skelly Photography

Durango Photographers

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Photographers in Durango CO help couples plan their Wedding – Part 4

This is Part 4 of us explaining how we work with couples planning a wedding and during their wedding day. If you missed the other parts, here they are:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

I will cover how we photograph the reception and the normal order of events. If the couple has hired a DJ or a band, we like to coordinate the timeline with them so we are all on the same page. We consider the reception to start as soon as we are done with the couples photos and they are announced into the reception area.

Bride and Groom entering reception hall, photographers in durango co, durango co photographers, durango photography

Bride and Groom entering reception hall

Usually after the bride and groom enter the reception hall, they will be surrounded by well wishers and given hugs and kisses by everyone. We’ll take a few photos of that happening, but not too many. If we have been hired to only attend a small portion of the reception, we will get the DJ to work with us to get photos of the cake cutting (even if it’s fake), the first dance, and the bouquet/garter toss.  We prefer to be there for most of the reception so we can photograph them as they happen logistically, but some couples budgets don’t allow for that.

If we are there for most of the reception, dinner will usually take place shortly after the couple arrive. They usually have arranged to feed us poor starving photographers, so that’s very much appreciated. After dinner, there are generally toasts by parents, maid of honor, and best man. We ask the couple to stand near the toaster so we can get all of their reactions, toasts, hugs, etc.

Dad toasting bride and groom, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango co photographers

Bride’s dad toasting (and roasting) the couple at the reception

During the dinner, we will take photos of the guests at their tables so the couple has the memories and a record of who attended their wedding. If there are 100 or more guests, we have prepared business cards with instructions on how the guests can view the photos once they’re ready and on our website. We pass these out while we’re taking their photos. We also take photos of the food, signs, the DJ, the flowers, and any other items the couple would want to remember. We also take the bride and groom’s wedding rings and photograph them in various places. As we always say, the food and the flowers will be gone after the wedding, but the photographs last forever!

Wedding rings in bouquet, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango photographers

Wedding rings in bouquet

After dinner and the toasts, the cake cutting is usually next so people can enjoy their dessert during the first dances. Since the couple has usually never been married before, I generally give them some basic instructions on how to hold the knife and how to cut a small piece to feed each other. Every once in a while, they will smash it into each other’s faces, and yes, it is fun!

Bride smashing cake into groom's face, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango photographers

Bride smashing cake into groom’s face

Bride and groom cutting the cake, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango photographers

Bride and groom cutting cake with no smashing into faces

Next we move on to the First Dances. The bride and groom are first up, then the Bride and her dad, then the Groom and his mom. After these three dances are completed, everybody gets on the dance floor for some fun (and to wear off the calories from the dinner and cake – haha). We also get many photos of everybody dancing later in the evening.

Bride and Groom's first dance, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango photographers

The First Dance

The last things that usually take place are the bouquet toss and the garter toss. The bride usually has a spare smaller bouquet that she uses for the toss. After that the groom needs to remove the garter from the bride’s lovely leg. Many times we’ll tell the groom he has to crawl to the bride and without using his hands, remove that garter.

These are so much fun with lots of single ladies and men trying to catch the prize, although I have seen some people in the groups actively trying to AVOID catching the prize. For these shots, since it’s somewhat dark by then, I have a flash on my camera either with a bulb softener or bouncing off the ceiling to light the bride and Ken holds another flash with an umbrella to light the ladies. Same thing for the groom and his guys. After the bouquet and garter have been tossed, I get a photo of the winners with the bride and groom.

Bride throwing bouquet, photographers in durango co, durango co photographers, durango photography

Bride throwing the wedding bouquet

Groom removing bride's garter, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango co photographers

Broom searching for the garter

When the sun is getting ready to set, or if it’s already dusk, we’ll take the couple out for a few more photos.

Bride and Groom reflection,Durango Wedding Photographers, Photographers Durango CO, Durango CO Photographers

Wedding Reflections

Bride and Groom with moon, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango photographers

Bride and Groom with moon

These 4 posts are based on a typical 6-8 hr wedding. There are many variations and differences in everybody’s wedding day. I hope these were informational and would love to hear your opinions.

Long Live Love!

Karen Skelly Photography

Photographers in Durango CO

www.karenskellyphoto.com

karen@karenskellyphoto.com

970.884.5292

 

 

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Photographers in Durango CO help couples plan their wedding – Part 3

I’ve been writing about how my husband and I, who are photographers in Durango CO, work with and photograph couples who are planning their wedding. This is Part 3. If you missed Part 1, you can see it here. If you missed Part 2, you can see that here.

Part 3 is going to cover how we photograph the families, wedding party, and the couple. These portrait sessions are probably some of the most important photos for the bride and groom because they will have all of their loved ones and friends, who they sometimes don’t see very often. I love to capture everybody, especially grand parents who will pass away one day and then the couple has these memories of them.

Wedding Family Portraits, Durango Wedding Photographers, Wedding Photographers Durango CO, Durango Photographers, Durango Photography

65 People and a Dog

Normally, the portraits are taken right after the ceremony and before the reception. I ask the bride to name a person who can corral everybody to make sure we don’t miss someone. Since we don’t know all of the family and friends, the person who gets everyone together needs to be a close family member or friend who knows everyone. As soon as we get to the wedding venue, Ken and I look around and find a spot that will be beautiful for these portraits, so we already have that set up so we don’t waste time having to look around after the ceremony.

Bride with Mom and Dad, Durango Photography, Durango Wedding Photographers, Wedding Photographers Durango CO, Durango Weddings

Bride with mom and dad

Bride with her grandpa, Photographers in Durango CO, Durango Photographers, Durango Photography

Bride with her grandpa

Once we have everyone together, we get everybody situated into a spot so we can see everyone’s face. Tall people in the back, medium height people in front of them, and younger people and kids on the ground. I show the people on the ground how to pose their legs, then I show the people standing how to pose their legs as well. There really is a way to pose legs so that people look their best (read, thinner). Starting with the feet and legs automatically adjusts people’s posture.

Wedding Family and Friends Portrait, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango photographers

Wedding Family and Friends

Once we have the big group picture, we start removing people so that the couple starts getting their closest relatives for a closer up shot. We move people in and out so that we get all of the bride’s family, all of the groom’s family, and special family members. Then we move onto the wedding party portraits. We’ll do the entire group with a few different poses, including fun things like wearing sun glasses, walking towards me with fist pumps or flowers in the air, or drinking beer/wine/whiskey. I’ll do anything the group wants to do. Then we take separate photos of the bride with each of her girls and the groom with each of his guys.

Groom and Groomsmen, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango photographers

Groom and Groomsmen having a beer

We then send everybody, except the bride and groom, off to the reception. We’ll take the couple to a few different spots around the venue to capture their love and happiness – they are newly married after all. After we’re done, Ken and I get ahead of the bride and groom so we can capture them coming into the reception area (the DJ and I have coordinated this). We’ll also take the couple out later on for some sunset photos if that’s possible. If there’s no sunset, we still get some photos later when the light is softer right before sunset.

Bride and Groom at Sunset, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango photographers

Bride and Groom at sunset

Next post will cover the reception. Thanks for reading and let me know your thoughts.

Long Live Love,

Karen Skelly Photography

Photographers in Durango CO

www.karenskellyphoto.com

karen@karenskellyphoto.com

970.884.5292

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Photographers in Durango CO work with couples planning a wedding – Part 2

This is Part 2 of my post about how my husband and I work with couples to photograph their weddings in Durango CO. You can view Part 1 here .

One of the things I missed in Part 1 concerns engagement sessions. As Photographers in Durango CO we love to do engagement sessions because then we are able to get to know our clients so much better and they get to know us as well. We have lots of fun and they have another special day to remember. Many of our clients have us put together a guest signing album using their engagement images. We have hard paged albums where we put the engagement photo on one side of the page and leave the other side blank for guests to sign at their wedding reception. Of course, if you live out of state or are eloping, an engagement session probably won’t work for you.

Dog with engagement ring on nose, Photographers in Durango CO, Durango CO Photographers, Durango Photography, Durango Wedding Photographers

What is on my nose?

Now to continue where I left off in the last post. If the girls are getting their hair and makeup done, I try to keep everything on schedule by letting them know how much time they have left because it’s so easy to lose track of time and get behind. Sometimes we do a First Look with the bride and groom, which I find to be super special because we’ll have the bride walk up behind the groom and maybe put her hands over his eyes or tap him on the shoulder. He then turns around and gets to see his soon to be wife in all her beauty. After we take some photographs, which adds more to the couple’s collection, we let them be alone for a few minutes. This definitely does not take away from the way the groom reacts when he sees his bride coming down the aisle. If the bride and groom don’t want to do a First Look, sometimes we’ll do it with the bride and her dad.

Bride and Groom First Look, Photographers in Durango CO, Durango CO Photographers, Durango Photography, Durango Wedding Photographers

Bride and Groom First Look

Sometimes we also do some of the family or wedding party portraits before the ceremony, depending on how much time we have and the time of the day. If the sun is high in the sky, we need to find a shady spot to put everybody in so they don’t have raccoon eyes and they’re not squinting. Both of those are not acceptable. During the family/wedding party/couple’s photos, my husband holds our umbrella with a flash so we can light everybody’s faces so they all look great. Ken, my husband, calls himself my lighting technician:)

Photographer's umbrella with flash, Photographers in Durango CO, Durango CO Photographers, Durango Photography, Durango Wedding Photographers

Ken holding the umbrella with flash during a family portrait session

During the ceremony, both Ken and I take photographs of everything going on. We love to capture all of the smiles, the tears, the emotions, and any other moments that happen. Some couples have a special thing such as a sand ceremony, an exchange of roses, or something else special to them. This is one of the things we ask about in our Wedding Information form so that we’re prepared when it happens. We make sure to capture the vows, the ring exchanges, and the first kiss. Sometimes we have to yell out “slow down the kiss” so we can capture the moment – haha. Then as the couple is walking back down the aisle, I have them stop at the end of the chairs and do another kiss. This usually gets an applause from their guests.

Wedding Ceremony at Dalton Ranch, photographers in durango co, durango co photographers, durango photography, durango wedding photographers

Wedding Ceremony at Dalton Ranch

Stay tuned for Part 3 where I’ll talk about the portraits of the family, wedding party, and the couple.

Long Live Love

Karen Skelly Photography

Photographers in Durango CO

https://www.karenskellyphoto.com

karen@karenskellyphoto.com

970.884.5292

Get in touch for more information about having us photograph your wedding or family portraits

 

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Photographers in Durango CO help couples plan their wedding – Part 1

You’ve just become engaged? So Happy For You – Congratulations!

This is part one of how we work with and photograph couples who are planning a wedding.

We are photographers in Durango CO and have photographed lots of weddings and spoken to lots of couples, and we realize that planning a wedding is a daunting task. Of course, if you’re planning a small wedding or an elopement, it’s much easier, but a large wedding with all your family and friends can cause some couples to throw their hands up in the air and say “Help Me”. We also realize that most couples have never done this before, so we love to help out any way we can.

You can hire a wedding planner or even a “day of” wedding planner and a lot of that WILL be taken care of for you. If you’re not hiring one of those, we will help out as much as you need by sending you a list of our recommended vendors and also helping steer the day of the wedding in the right direction so that nothing is missed. Many times we work with the DJ, who also has a vested interest in keeping the day on track.

When we first meet up with a couple or chat on the phone, we find out where they’re getting married and the time of the ceremony. I realize many couples want to get married early in the day so they can have their reception and everybody can enjoy themselves. I totally get that, but having your ceremony outdoors (most weddings in Durango CO are outdoors) at high noon makes the lighting extremely difficult. If you’re having an outdoor wedding and you can move the ceremony time, it will make the photographs much better – the time depends on the month you’re getting married. We do use an off camera flash with an umbrella during the family and couple’s photos to offset the sun, so it’s not impossible.

rose exchange during wedding ceremony, photographers in durango co, durango co photographers, photographers durango co, durango photographers, durango wedding photographers

This was a wedding photographed outdoors in bright sun.

If you decide you would like to work with us, we have a Wedding Photography Agreement and a Wedding Information Form to be filled out. I have these on line so it makes it easy for couples to fill these forms out. Usually one half of the investment amount is paid at the time of signing and the other half is paid two weeks before the wedding. I do have payment plans if you’re unable to make just two payments. We are really easy to work with.

Groom carrying bride over shoulder, Photographers in Durango CO, Durango Photography, Durango CO Photographer

Groom carries bride off over his shoulder – Fun couples are the best!

If the wedding is at a venue where we haven’t been before, we will arrive a little early to scope out good locations for the family/wedding party/couples portraits. If we’re doing “getting ready” photos, we’ll also find a nice spot to photograph the dress, shoes, bouquet, jewelry, and other items that the bride will want to remember. Then we will photograph her and her girls getting their hair and makeup done. If the groom is getting ready at the same location, I’ll go back and forth between them so I capture all those moments that they won’t have seen of each other. If the client is getting a Wedding Album, we like to tell the story of their day from beginning to end.

Couple kissing on a ski lift, Photographers in Durango CO, Durango Photography, Durango CO Photographers

Wedding at Purgatory Resort

Be on the lookout for Part 2 coming soon.

Long Live Love

Karen Skelly Photography

Durango CO Photographers

www.karenskelyphoto.com

karen@karenskellyphoto.com

970.884.5292

We are always here to help. Let us know if you are getting married and would like more information.

 

 

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Kristy and Dave’s Wedding by Durango CO Photographers

Ken and I are photographers in Durango CO and we love to photograph weddings. From leaving our house in the morning until arriving back home at night, this wedding took us roughly 12 hrs – long day, but so worth it because Kristy and Dave are the best!

Kristy and Dave have been together for almost 5 yrs. Dave popped the question in NY at his on the front lawn of his childhood home on May 27th, 2018. Kristy is a project manager who works with homeless veterans, and Dave is a police officer right here in Durango.

Bride getting makeup done by durango photographers

Bride getting makeup done

Bridesmaids and flower girl admire bride by durango wedding photographers

Bridesmaids and Flower Girl admire the beautiful bride

They were married at St Columba’s Catholic Church in Durango CO. It was a beautiful ceremony with lots of family and friends in attendance. During the ceremony their wedding sponsors looped a large rosary, called a lasso rosary, around them.

The “lassoing” act is a symbol of unifying the couple together in marriage for their entire lives. This custom is similar to the lighting of a unity candle used in many Catholic weddings. The couple is to share the responsibility of marriage and raising a family. The figure eight also represents the mathematical symbol for infinity–no beginning and no end. The number eight in the Bible is also the number of new beginnings. The use of rosary beads in this ritual is also significant; using a rosary reflects that the bride and groom are forever bound together in unity by God. Kristy and Dave also did the candle lighting ceremony to honor their deceased parents.

Church wedding ceremony by durango co photographers

Beautiful church wedding ceremony

Lasso Rosary around wedding couple by photographers in durango co

Wedding sponsors lassoing the couple with a large rosary

Bride and Groom lighting candle by durango wedding photographers

Bride and Groom lighting unity candle

Bride and Groom's first kiss by photographers in durango co

Bride and Groom’s First Kiss

After the ceremony we photographed the entire family of both the bride and the groom. Then everybody headed up to Silverpick Lodge for the reception.

Wedding family portrait by durango photographers

Wedding family portrait

We’ve done quite a few weddings and receptions at Silverpick Lodge, so we had planned on doing some more family, wedding party, and couples portraits up on top of the hill where there’s a beautiful view. However, we had sooo much snow this winter that there was a six foot wall of snow at the entrance to the path, so that plan was nixed. We did most of those portraits on the patio behind the lodge.

After we finished all of the portraits outdoors, we went inside for dinner, toasts, cake cutting, first dance, bouquet toss, removing the garter (with groom using his teeth of course), and mingling among the guests. Steve from Southwest DJs was great at helping keep everything moving because I had put a timeline together for everybody, and it ended up running around one hour late because dinner took way longer than expected. So I am thankful for him doing that.

goofy wedding party durango photography

Wedding party acting goofy

Bride and Groom cutting the cake by durango co photographers

Bride and Groom cutting the cake

Bride and Groom's first dance by durango photography

Bride and Groom’s first dance

Bride tossing the bouquet by wedding photographers in durango co

Bride tossing the bouquet

groom removing garter durango photography

Groom removing garter with his teeth

When the sun started going down, we took Kristy and Dave outside again to get some magical light photos. Kristy’s parents are both deceased, and Dave’s dad is deceased, so I had them bring photos of their parents to take with them on their wedding day.

Bride and Groom with photo of her deceased parents by durango photographers

Bride and Groom with photo of her deceased parents

Bride and Groom in bear hug by photographers in durango co

Bride and Groom in bear hug

Bride and Groom silhouette by wedding photographers in durango co

Bride and Groom Silhouette

Then we all moved into the lower level of Silverpick Lodge for some dancing with all the guests.

Bride and Groom dancing by durango wedding photographers

Bride and Groom dance with guests in a circle around them

Thank you for reading about this spectacular wedding.

Long Live Love

Karen Skelly Photography

Durango CO Photographers

www.karenskellyphoto.com

karen@karenskellyphoto.com

970.884.5292

 

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Elopement Wedding Tips by Durango CO Photographers – Part 2

This is Part 2 of a two part post on Elopement Wedding Tips by Durango CO Photographers (that would be my hubby and me). You can access Part 1 here.

5.  If you are going to do your own hair and makeup, research some youtube videos to get some ideas as to how you want to look and how the makeup will look in photographs. If you’re going to be outdoors, you’ll want to wear sunscreen under the makeup, but don’t use one that has zinc as an ingredient. It can make you look washed out in photos.

6. Do research also when looking for a photographer. Some couples want to bring a friend along, but that’s not always a great idea. If the friend doesn’t know the area, they aren’t going to know where to go for the most beautiful locations. Also, I’ve heard from many brides that their friend didn’t do such a great job and they don’t love their wedding images.

Bride and Groom portrait by Photographers in Durango CO, Durango Wedding Photographers, Wedding Photographers in Durango CO, Durango CO Photographers

Bride looks back while walking down road

7.  Don’t stress out when things don’t go quite as planned. Even an elopement can run into snags. Laugh when things go wrong and then laugh when things go right. I love lots of laughter in wedding photos. Enjoy each other and those special moments will show in your images.

8.  In this area, I would suggest wearing comfortable shoes. You will be walking in dirt, grass, and on rocks – and possibly snow if you come in the winter. If you want photographs of you in different clothing after the ceremony, that’s no problem. It’s great if you have some props – champagne and glasses, cupcakes or a small cake, sunglasses, or anything else you like.

Bride and Groom kissing by wagon, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango co photographers

Bride and Groom in their elopement outfits

9.  Do check for the marriage license requirements in the state you are going to visit for your elopement. The rules can vary. You may need photo ID, birth certificate, passport (if coming from a different country), and divorce papers if you’ve been married before.

Wedding Rings in the Snow by Photographers in Durango CO, Durango Wedding Photographers, Wedding Photographers in Durango CO, Durango CO Photographers

Wedding Rings on hand prints in the snow with Bouquet

10. Have fun, love your intimate time together, and party afterwards!

Thank you for reading these tips.

Long Live Love

Karen Skelly Photography

Durango CO Photographers

www.karenskellyphoto.com

karen@karenskellyphoto.com

970.884.5292

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Elopement Wedding Tips by Photographers in Durango CO

This is Part 1 of 2

My husband, Ken, and I are photographers in Durango CO and we love to photograph elopements. It’s usually just the couple and us at the location of the ceremony. Sometimes there’s an officiant, but it’s not required in Colorado. You can marry yourself and just sign the Marriage License and you’re all set. We’ve acted as the witnesses many many times.

Elopements are great for both the couple and the photographers. There’s less stress and more time to capture all those great couples portraits that we sometimes don’t have time for during a full day wedding. We photograph a lot of elopements in Durango CO because it’s a beautiful destination wedding location.

Here are some tips that you can apply (or not):

  1. Should you keep it a secret? Well, this is up to you, but make sure you have a good reason ready to tell your loved ones and friends who might feel hurt that they didn’t get to attend your special day. There are also some elopements where the parents and siblings are at the ceremony, and that works out well for some couples. You can always have a reception back home once you’re married. Most of your family and friends will be happy with this. If you’re doing this, let us know because we will definitely have the photos ready for your reception date so you can show everyone a slideshow.

    Bride and Groom with sign, photographers in durango co, durango co photographers, durango photography, durango wedding photographers

    We Eloped!

  2.  I know I’m a bit biased, but the photographer should be the first vendor you contact. I always help my clients who are coming to Durango from somewhere else. They usually need a florist, a hair and makeup artist, and maybe an officiant. I know all the best ones, and will email their contact information so they can get a bouquet, special pampering with hair and makeup, and someone to marry them. If the couple decides to have us at their elopement, we have an on-line Wedding Photography Agreement and a Wedding Information form that we send to them so everything is super easy and stress free. We also know some beautiful spots to have your elopement and can send you photos so you can choose the one you love. This one was during the winter, but it’s also lovely in the summer and fall.
    Bride and Groom having a snowball fight, photographers in durango co, durango co photographers, durango wedding photographers, durango photography, wedding photographers in durango co

    Bride and Groom having a snowball fight

    3. You can go on the tourism site for the city where you are going to elope. The Durango Tourism website (Durango.org) has a wealth of information, including things you can do while you’re visiting here, because obviously you will want to make a vacation out of the elopement. It’s a great place for a destination wedding because there are so many fun things to do while you’re here.

    Married on the Colorado Trail, by Durango CO Photographers, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango wedding photographers

    Married on the Colorado Trail and then hiked the entire 500 miles

     

    4. Your budget is totally up to you, of course, but contact different vendors to get an idea of how much everything will cost and then you can make better plans. If you want to get fancy, we know of a company who provides small tables with elegant dishware, glasses, pillows to sit on, candles, and other gorgeous decorations that you can use to serve up some champagne and a couple of cupcakes. These will make for some excellent photographs.

     

Bride and Groom sitting at table, photographers in durango co, durango photography, durango co photographers, durango wedding photographers

Bride and Groom sitting at beautifully set table

I’ll continue Part 2 soon, so stay tuned, and thank you for reading this post.

Long Live Love

Karen Skelly Photography

Photographers in Durango CO

www.karenskellyphoto.com

970.884.5292

karen@karenskellyphoto.com

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