Campbells Covered Bridge Family Portraits | Greer SC

In the fall in the Upstate of SC, there are few things more picturesque than Campbells Covered Bridge family portraits! The Brookshires are an amazing, supportive, sweet family to photograph, and it’s been such a treat to watch their family grow. I first met them for Ava’s newborn portraits, and I got to meet sweet Erin when she, too, was just a few days old. <3 We had lots of fun in the beautiful fall leaves celebrating Erin’s First Birthday and capturing them as a family of four! (And full disclosure: I am a TERRIBLE blogger. This session is one of MANY that I’m “catching up on” posting. Erin is almost 2 now. Oopsie!)

Introducing….The Brookshires, Campbells Covered Bridge Family Portraits

Life, totally unposed and unscripted, but completely perfect anyway!

I love these sweet, snugly moments…

BE STILL MY HEART! How stinking adorable is Big Sis Ava giving her Baby Sis a little tickle on the chin?

Ava | Quiet and thoughtful, then giggly and spunky

After viewing Erin’s newborn portraits, Mom noticed that in the “sweet” sister shots, Ava was actually poking Erin in the ear. We laughed and laughed about that, and then during this cute family moment, Erin put big sis’s finger right on in her mouth. Haha! Tradition, I suppose. 🙂

Campbells Covered Bridge Family Portraits

Erin | Sweet and serious, with adorable cheeks for days!

“Sisters share childhood memories and grown-up dreams.” –Anonymous

Hands down, this was Mom & Dad’s favorite photo from their Campbells Covered Bridge family portraits. I think that in this moment they see their girls becoming friends, learning and leading, and building a sweet bond to last a lifetime.

The lighting inside the covered bridge is SO pretty and dramatic. I love how these rich black & white photos showcase that light, but mostly how they show off these girls’ fun little personalities!

This portrait session wasn’t *just* a family shoot–it was also the day before Erin’s First Birthday! Erin’s Mommy has started her own bakery, and her cakes and cookies are SO CUTE. Check her out at 2 Sweets Bakery! I would alllllllllmost feel badly to eat her adorable frosted cookies, but I do love a good, soft sugar cookie so I’m thinking I could make an exception. Erin’s smash cake was also almost too pretty to eat, but she dug into it anyway. 😉

Campbells Covered Bridge Family Portraits Cake Smash

Happy First Birthday, Erin!

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Bald Rock Senior Portrait | Greenville SC

Madi’s Bald Rock Senior Portrait Session in the mountains of northern Greenville SC reminded me of HOW MUCH I love photographing high school seniors! The short drive up the mountain had us traveling through bursts of rain, overcast skies, and misty fog. As I turned the last bend before the random pull-off parking lot (if you’ve been to Bald Rock, you know what I’m talking about–it’s a bit quirky!), the skies opened and the sun came out! The view looking out from Bald Rock was just perfect, and the rainstorm even gave us a little surprise…but you’ll have to read to the end of this post for that. 😉 As soon as she stepped in front of my camera, Madi was full of quiet confidence, natural posing, and a “Mona Lisa smile” that revealed nothing but the reminder that seniors are full of mystery, hope, confidence, uncertainty, and nostalgia, which combine to create a most beautiful year. It’s not too late to photograph this year’s Seniors, and I would LOVE getting a head start on members of the Class of 2019. If you know of a Senior who needs his or her year captured (both for themselves and also for the Mamas and Daddies who are going to be missing them like crazy), please send them my way.

Introducing Madi…Class of 2018

I’ve said it before, but man I am jealous of people who can pull off the serious face! Madi killed it; when I do it, I just look like I’m coming down with a cold. (Ha!)

The views at Bald Rock are gorgeous, but so are these little patches of greenery and lovely light. Madi was such a natural in front of the camera.

This image…it just speaks to me. One of my favorites from her Bald Rock Senior Portrait Session.

Super cute senior!

Grace and confidence with the whole world in front of her, yet a bit apprehensive about taking that jump. I think this image is such a metaphor for that Senior Year season of lasts…which leads to a whole new season of firsts.

As many times as I’ve shot at Bald Rock, I had never ventured off “the rock” to this wooded patch. I LOVED what we found and how Madi rocked this part of her Bald Rock Senior Portrait Session!

Madi and her sweet Mama…

Remember that rain storm I mentioned on the drive up the mountain? How many times do you get a perfect surprise like this rainbow? It didn’t last long, but it sure was beautiful!

As usual, I’ll end this post with one of my favorites from the session. Every now and then, you just see an image happening and KNOW it’s begging to become a B&W photo. No doubt, this portrait is one of those times.

Best wishes, Madi and the Class of 2018, for a senior year that fills your hearts with memories to last a lifetime!

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Sarah + Chad’s Greenville SC Wedding

Sarah and Chad’s  Greenville SC wedding was the perfect mix of them: bright and vibrant, caring and attuned to others, fun yet serious. Sarah and her bridesmaids danced in the bridal suite to her wedding day playlist while Chad adjusted his pinstripe suit and visited with family and friends. She was a pop of color with her red lipstick, giving air-kisses to all, and he listened closely to the marriage advice given by his 10 year old soon-to-be nephew. During their wedding ceremony, they served their friends and family communion, symbolizing Jesus’ sacrifice and service to us. He beamed at her after they were pronounced husband and wife, and she held him as they swayed to music only they heard.  It was such a pleasure to get to know this couple, who, like my own husband and I, took their time in life finding one another…and their love and their connection is made all the more sweet because of the wait.

Introducing Sarah + Chad, Just Married!

Sarah’s dress from Bravura Bridal Salon was the perfect amounts of sparkle and lace. It was beautiful to photograph, and I just love this verse that’s engraved on the beams of their church.

Weddings are such a special time to incorporate meaningful heirlooms to honor beloved family members. Sarah wore her late Grandmother’s ring and carried the “something blue” handkerchief that her Grandfather purchased from the commissary during WWII and gave to her Grandmother. I love these special details. I also love just how delicate and timeless Sarah’s engagement ring and wedding band are. Just beautiful! (Good job, Chad!!)

All of the ladies’ wedding day jewelry was custom designed. I’m a girl who loves a bit of sparkle, and these iridescent colors were PERFECT with all of the color that Sarah chose for her bridesmaids’ dresses.

Barrett’s Flowers in Taylors SC created bouquets and boutonnieres that were full of sunshine and bright colors. I loved them! Sarah also incorporated more sweet memories of her Grandmother into her bouquet, but having Barrett’s tuck her Grandmother’s sparkly earrings into the flowers.

“Getting Ready” photos have become one of my favorite times to be artistic during the wedding day. I love the way the light and shadows highlight the anticipation and energy as a woman transforms into a bride It’s a beautiful thing to capture.

There’s something about the veil that makes it all real and complete. (And if a bride ever asks me “Should I wear my veil??” the answer is always, always YES!!! I looooove a veil!)

So this image may not be technically “perfect,” but I love it so much anyway. THIS is Sarah. She is confident and joyous, and she was READY to get married!!

A little hallway dancing with her sweet flower girl and ring bearer. How cute are they??

Chad describes becoming smitten with Sarah on their first date: “When I first met Sarah, I was confronted with a beautiful, intelligent, thoughtful, and caring woman. Long flowing locks and bright eyes looked across the table as we talked for hours…closing down the PF Chang’s where we dined. Everything clicked right away and it felt as if I was reuniting with a long lost companion.”

I think this sequence with Sarah and her Dad is just so cute! Because Sarah and Chad live out of state, her parents were responsible for lots of the wedding planning. Her Dad was so sweet and involved and helpful. He also [reluctantly] admits that he got really good at saying “How much do I write the check for?” and “Whatever you want, dear.” 😉

Sarah knew exactly what she wanted when it came to her bridesmaids’ dresses: COLOR! This group of ladies was so fun and vibrant, and their dresses and flowers were the perfect fit. I cannot get over how beautifully their colors pop on camera! I love that Sarah was bold and unapologetic in her choices for their wedding. Taking design risks pays off big time!

Now let’s be clear: the bold design and fashion sense doesn’t end with the girls! Chad and his groomsmen were super sharp in their gray suits and purple accents, and I seriously love Chad’s pinstripes and pops of red.

Chad and some of his Groomsmen. My favorite is totally the middle image of nephew Jackson, who was very serious when I asked if he had any marriage advice for Chad. I would love to know what was being said here!

Chad and his beautiful Moms. I love these looks of pride on their faces.

Sweet, sweet, sweet Mama’s love.

When Sarah was describing Chad to me, she said that she mosts loves his “patience, kindness, and thoughtfulness and strong sense of caring for those around him.”  I love how these portraits reflect that peace abut him.

I always ask my second photographer to go on into the sanctuary to capture the bride and her dad coming into the church, and that’s because *I* want to stick around for those final sweet moments between the bride and her dad.

Sarah grew up in the Lutheran Church of Our Savior, and her parents also got married here! I loved the beautiful architecture and bold stained glass windows.

Another of my favorite times on a couple’s wedding is what I call “Glow Time.” If a couple doesn’t do a First Look before their ceremony, those few minutes after they walk up the aisle are the FIRST time of the day that they are together without being in front of the whole church. These moments are when they can get lost in their own little world and let it sink in that they’re actually, finally married! I ask all of my couples to carve out a few minutes just for them to celebrate in their own way. The next few images are from Sarah and Chad’s Glow Time, and I just love how in tune to each other they are.

Although every couple celebrates their Glow Time a little differently, it’s nearly universal for them to take a peek at their hands and new bling!

Another hallmark of my approach to weddings is capturing “real moments and true emotions.” I will always, always get that smiling-at-the-camera Christmas card shot, but I love to give folks a space to laugh and giggle and snuggle in ways that are fun and relaxed. This shot of Sarah and Chad’s wedding party is such a fun moment!

These colors and sweet family/friends are just gorgeous!!

I crack up every time I see this photo. 🙂 I love all the variety of expressions in the background!!

 

It warms my heart to see the way that in-love couples look at each other.

“I feel that I am my most balanced and best self [with him]. I don’t change to be what he wants as he accepts me for who I am, flaws and all!….I am always ‘home’ with him.” –Sarah

“Sarah has all the perfect attributes and we fit together in such a beautiful way….I’ve never felt so loved nor felt so much love for another.” –Chad

I always have a “super-favorite” from every wedding, I think this is it from Sarah and Chad’s!

Sarah and Chad’s reception was at Thornblade Country Club, and the ballroom was filled with so many loved ones, many who had traveled long distances to help celebrate.

The Boomers from East Coast Entertainment kept the dance floor hopping for this Greenville SC wedding reception. Live bands are so fun!

Paul Hoke from Heirloom Entertainment was the MC for the evening, and he brought several special touches that I just loved.  One was special introductions as each of the wedding party were introduced. It was neat for guests to get to know more about these important members of the wedding day. Another was retelling Sarah and Chad’s love story, seen below.

My favorite part of the reception, something that Heirloom Entertainment arranged, was for Sarah and Chad to have a “last Last Dance.” After the band played their final song, Megan from Thornblade guided the guests downstairs to line up for the rose petal exit. Sarah and Chad (and of course me and my camera) stayed in the ballroom so they could have one final dance on their wedding day…a few minutes alone in a day that is hectic and hurried yet all about them…some time to reflect on their day, in their reception space, and soak in the last moments of this incredible day that was filled with amazing moments.

Sarah and Chad, I am so glad to know you through your wedding. Watching you love each other and love your friends and family so well was a beautiful thing. I wish you a lifetime of love and joy together.

–Amy

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Emily + Franklin | North Greenville University Engagement Portraits

Emily + Franklin met while they were students at North Greenville University, so it was only natural that we would photograph their engagement portraits on the campus that means so much to them. Their love for each other is strong, but their love for the Lord is even stronger. Our very first stop during the portrait session was in the Prayer Chapel at NGU, where Franklin prayed over their relationship. It was so special to him leading their relationship in this way. These two have such a relaxed, sweet, fun spirit about them, and you can just tell that they are the perfect fit. Emily is my cousin, and I am so happy that she has found such a wonderful guy for her. Patient, kind, respectful, and full of smiles for one another…Franklin + Emily were so easy to photograph, and I can’t wait for their wedding TODAY!!

Introducing….Emily + Franklin’s Engagement Portraits

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So much happy! I just love these two!

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I love what this image says about their relationship. Safety, comfort, and just being at home in each other’s arms.

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How cute are they???

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When I photograph couples, I love to play some silly games to get them to loosen up, to create some fun memories, and to capture real expressions. It also gives me a chance to step back and just let them be in the moment, like this shot…

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We stuck around North Greenville’s campus until the sun began to set over the NC mountains in the background. I’m SO glad that we waited–these next few shots are some of my favorites!

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Love love LOVE. We don’t just play silly games during portrait sessions…I also like to ask my couples questions that get them to dig deep and think about their relationship. This real emotion is the result. No fake smiles, no “act like you love each other” commands…these are true moments, y’all.

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(I can’t decide…color or B&W. What do you think??)

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There’s always a point during a portrait session where I make a fool of myself when I see something special on my side of the lens. Pretty sure (because they told me) that Emily and Franklin didn’t know where I was going with this shot…but I’m glad they trusted my vision, even if they didn’t know what that vision was!

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Emily and Franklin, your love is something special. I’m so touched that you wanted me to capture your story through my photographs. My prayer for your wedding day and every day that follows is to see the best in each other, to laugh so deeply that your eyes crinkle up 😉 , and to always lift up the other in prayer. Thank you, truly, for choosing me as your photographer!

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LaRhonda’s Bridal Portraits at Lindsey Plantation, Taylors SC

I met LaRhonda and her mother at Lindsey Plantation in Taylors, SC, to photograph her bridal portraits on a sunny late-summer day. The only thing shining brighter than the hot September sun was LaRhonda herself. This South Carolinian-turned-Texan simply glowed! She glowed when she put on her bridal gown, and she glowed when she saw the wide-open pastures and mountain views, but her light glowed the brightest when she talked to me about her soon-to-be husband Josh. After spending the afternoon learning about these two lovebirds (their new last name is actually Sparrow…), I have no doubts that these two are the real deal when it comes to love and adventure and lots of silly fun.

LaRhonda requested for her bridal portraits to be fairly natural and unposed, and I feel like her quirkiness, her effervescence, and her love for Josh shines through in these photos. Now that the Sparrows are officially Mr. and Mrs., I am excited to reveal these Bridal Portraits!

Introducing, the brand-new Mrs. Sparrow…

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THIS. This is LaRhonda, pretty much always!

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Lindsey Plantation has an amazing variety of spots for portraits, but the sun setting over the pasture can’t be beat.

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Heeyyyyyy! This sassy girl was so much fun. I cannot wait to begin working on her and Josh’s wedding day images. If you haven’t already “liked” Amy Clifton Keely Photography on facebook, please hit the button below so you can keep up with The Sparrows’ Sneak Peeks as I post them!

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LaRhonda, lady, you are incredible! I’m so happy to know you and to have played a small part in telling yours and Josh’s love story. Y’all are amazing!!

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