I know, I know—I’m too clever for words.
Before I share our engagement pictures, I wanted to share how we picked our photographers.
True confession: Photography was one of the the things I started looking into before we got engaged. (Gmail tells me I sent the first email December 14th. We got engaged December 22nd—but hey, to be fair, I knew it was coming.) It was always one of the most important things to me (seriously, I’m a picture whore), and I knew it would be one of The Big Decisions.
That having been said, I also knew how expensive wedding photography is in general. In my opinion, $3,000–$5,000 for photography is just too much, especially when you add on all the limits: x amount of hours, up to y amount of total pictures, z amount of proofs back…but for $500 more, you can add an engagement session! Ain’t nobody got time (or monies) for that, am I right?
Despite my near depression, I was persistent and decided to search anyway. I definitely used The Knot for this and would open up six or seven websites at a time, only to close them out with a sigh one after one. Two factors would immediately turn me off: not listing their prices and having fancypants, formal, artsy-fartsy and/or “serious” pictures everywhere. I mean, to each his/her own, but we aren’t fancypants, formal, artsy-fartsy or “serious” people, you know?
Then, I stumbled across Limelight Images.
Courtesy of Limelight Images / This is the first picture I saw on their website. I fell in love.
I was in awe of the absolutely stunning photographs. A HUGE plus: these people clearly knew, and loved, Pittsburgh (which is, as you know from this post, so very near and dear to our hearts).
All photos courtesy of Limelight Images and can be found here.
A guys’ shot with the skyline
One of the best pictures I have ever seen, ever, EVER
OK, you caught me—this one has NOTHING to do with Pittsburgh, but I literally laughed out loud.
A beautiful picture in downtown Pittsburgh
The picture that made me gasp, the picture that sold me
After that last picture, friends, I was done. I was terrified to click on the “Prices” tab…like, nearly in tears over it. (Yup, tears. As I sat by myself, at my computer, at like 11:00 PM on a weekday, when I wasn’t even engaged yet. I acknowledge all of this.)
When I did finally click on it, I swear I heard a chorus of angels. I don’t know what kind of heaven I accidentally stumbled into, but I have never, ever seen such reasonable prices for quality Pittsburgh-area photographers.
I’m willing to bet that it took me no less than 90 seconds to bang out an email to the contact, asking for more information. I heard back from one of the photographers, Kristy, two days later, and she was so friendly and willing to work with us. Mr. Palm Tree, MOH Mem, and I met with her husband and partner, Jimmy, at Panera Bread the following week. He was so incredibly open and friendly the entire time. I explained that we have little to no experience in this area, and he was super patient as he answered all of our questions and went over every detail. We fell head over heels. I emailed them that night telling them that we were going to go with them.
As Kristy and I have emailed (and Facebooked) back and forth since then, we have become so comfortable with one another. One of my emails to her said, “I was so worried that you guys were going to be dbags because I wanted to love you based on your pictures alone.” Her response, “You are too flippin’ funny! If I lived closer, we’d be BFFs.”
Since meeting them and especially since our engagement pictures, I have been obsessively stalking keeping up with Kristy, Jimmy, and their co-shooters on Facebook and through their website, and I am so pleased with our decision. BM Badonk brought up to me how she looked through a lot of their pictures and fell in love with them as well, so I pretty consistently post them on her wall and gush over them with her. They take some of the most vibrant and stunning pictures I have ever seen.
It is really important to us that all of our pictures, capture us. Of course there will be the standard “my hand on his chest” shot, the “let’s look lovingly into each other’s eyes shot,” and without a doubt the “hahahaha” shot.
Image from Limelight Images / See, the “hahahaha” shot
I like these shots; they’re staples–and of course, you never know what will happen that will make it your favorite. Maybe you really are laughing hysterically in this picture because your fiance(e) is the funniest damn ass person on the planet…or maybe he/she farted. (…but it’s kind of beautiful that nobody will know either way, right? Like, that’s your moment.)
What I love about Kristy and Jimmy, though, is that I trust them to capture our essence, if you will. For every shot like the one above, I’m willing to bet that we’ll have five of the ones below:
Image from Limelight Images / Let’s be real here, though, folks—if I ever got that much air it’d be because I was on a hovercraft.
And that fact, my friends, results in one sentimental, satisfied bride-to-be on a budget.
Do you have any suggestions for must haves for engagement shots? Where did/does photography rank on your list of The Big Decisions?