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Night Creative

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Studio Photography Asheville LuxeHousePhotographic (1001 of 16) LuxeHousePhotographic (1002 of 16)

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“Run my dear,
From anything
That may not strengthen
Your precious budding wings.”
― Hafez

Here are a handful of shots from a recent shoot I did.  I unfortunately forgot the radio trigger to the light system, so……I had to improvise.  it was a good lesson in lighting and making due with what you’ve got.

I have had the pleasure of knowing and photographing the lovely soul in these photos since she was 1 year old.

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Pearla Swank Shoot

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models: Devon Kelley-Mott, Liz Tron Azi

Headdresses: Michelle Ford, Pearla Swank

Gowns: Royal Peasantry

MUA: Blush By Wendy Ballance, Kristen Davis

Photography: René Treece Roberts of Luxe House Photographic

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Dreams

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“Your visions will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.”  C.G. Jung

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 luxehousephotographic-2007luxehousephotographic-2009   luxehousephotographic-2008“We meet ourselves time and again in a thousand disguises on the path of life.” C.G. Jungluxehousephotographic-2004

luxehousephotographic-2000-3 luxehousephotographic-2011“One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.” C.G. Jung

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I find great interest in my dreams.  Deep inside sleep, where I spend several hours a night, I feel close to some kind of message I can never quite make out.   I love the textures and the cloudiness that warps the lens between my conscious memory and my sleeping stories.

After a long break, I’m so excited to revisit, recreate, and explore a dear and lovely place of my living, sleeping, imaginary life.

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Castle Ladyhawke

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We loved getting to photograph this storybook wedding at the lovely Castle Ladyhawke!!

Photography by: Luxe House Photographic

2nd shooter: Galen McGee

Wedding Planner:  Occasions by Emily

Venue: Castle Ladyhawke

Cake: Just Simply Delicious

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12 Dreams

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I’ve started a new personal project.  I’ve tried to keep it all roped in and secret, but it’s leaking out.  I’m overjoyed to be shooting something just for me.  Over the next 6 months I will create a 12 piece series on dreams/characters/archetypes.  It will be a personal study of photographic technique mixed with the recording and studying of my dreams.  I will post some sketch shots, test shots, even some mess ups….but keep all the finished images top secret until all 12 are done.

 

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Trash the Dress

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Chataloochee

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Sunday in the Great Smoky Mountains.

 

 

 

 

 

Cataloochee Valley is nestled among some of the most rugged mountains in the southeastern United States. Surrounded by 6000-foot peaks, this isolated valley was one of the largest and most prosperous settlements in what is now the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

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Asheville Family Portraits

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Not all of my photo shoots involve white dresses, boutonnieres and corsages, tiered cakes, and the exchanging of vows in bucolic settings. While I absolutely love photographing weddings, I’m equally smitten by family portraiture. These images are from a family I recently worked with. Such a sweet group, and how about that baby? Isn’t she just the cutest? And the boots! Love the boots! And Papa’s beard! Oh, I just loved the whole thing.

We’re so fortunate to live in such a beautiful setting here in western North Carolina. Whether atop a stunning, aged mountain ridge or in a small, shaded neighborhood backyard, the scope of natural settings available to me as a photographer is immense. These landscapes allow me to work with natural light, which is, truly, the most flattering means of photographing people.

If you’d like to do a bit of family portraiture, I’d love to chat. As these images show, we’ll have a good time and you’ll look great!

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10 tips to taking better baby photos

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Tip #1: Turn Your Flash Off and Use Natural Light

When you begin experimenting with natural light, you will appreciate how much it flatters people–and they will appreciate this too! What’s more, turning off your flash will make your camera less conspicuous in public and open up more opportunities for candid situations.

Look for indirect natural light—the shade of a tree or an awning, or diffused by your window. When light shines beside your child, you will notice interesting soft shadows adding dimensionality to your composition. Facing your child straight on, light from the front creates a very soft, shadow-less portrait. Behind your child, backlight enhances colors and creates a bright backdrop.

Tip #2: Get to Know Your Camera

Point-and-shoot cameras make picture-taking a fully automated process, but the automatic settings don’t always allow you to make the most out of a shoot. Getting to know a few things about your camera will enable you to get more creative with your shots. Here are some tips for things to research in your camera manual.

1. Learn how to turn the flash off your camera. I’ve said it already and I’ll say it again. Natural, available light is far superior to flashbulb light, so make use of it as often as you can. 

2. Learn whether your camera will allow you to manually change its aperture setting. The wider the aperture, which is the size of the opening in the lens, the shallower the depth of field will be in your image. You have probably noticed and admired professional photos that have a softly blurred background and focus only on the primary subject. You can achieve this technique too by experimenting with your aperture setting.

3. Learn how to change the shutter speed of your camera. A fast shutter speed (1/250th of a second) will freeze even the fastest-moving child, while a slow shutter speed may create some pleasing motion blur that gives you visual clues about how the subject moving. Play around and see what happens!

4. Learn how to adjust the ISO of your camera (the sensitivity of your camera to light). You can often bump up the ISO of your camera to compensate for low-light conditions and avoid using a flash even in dim light.

Tip #3: Get Candid

Posed photos may have their time and place, but candid shots that capture your child unselfconsciously at play are often the ones you’ll treasure the most. I love taking pictures of my child looking directly into the camera, but I always look for opportunities to photograph him unaware. Either way, I almost never ask my subjects to say cheese.

Be patient and wait for genuine smiles. Try talking and engaging with your subject from behind the lens or sitting down with your camera during playtime. After a while, babies and children – and even adults — will forget the camera and return to whatever they’re doing. You will capture some precious moments that encapsulate the spirit of your child and your family.

Tip #5: Don’t Leave Home Without It

No amount of camera tips can make up for no camera at all. Remember to carry your camera with you as often as you can so you don’t miss out on unexpected photo opportunities. Even though many cell phones now have reasonably good cameras built in, they are usually too low resolution to generate a decent print, making them poor substitutes for a dedicated camera.

Tip #6: Hire a Pro

There is no substitute for professional photos. I know this sounds self-serving, but it’s true. Think about it: that’s why you hired a photographer for your wedding day. There’s a big difference between a casual snapshot and a carefully composed and executed image. Beautiful photos are worth their weight in gold: they become family treasures for generations.  

Some of the best times to hire a child photographer are along these junctures:



Newborn
  This phase passes so quickly, and is often preoccupied with many adjustments and distractions that make it nearly impossible to capture this time well on your own. The ideal time to have your newborn photographed is within this first two weeks of life, when they are at their sleepiest and most cooperative and can be curled into beautiful poses. Your child will never be so small and pliable again. It’s wonderful to have this time captured forever.

Six to Eight Months
 The next great juncture for adorable professional photographs is when your child is sitting up. They no longer need to be propped up for the camera and are quite curious and alert.

One Year
  This is the perfect time to capture new walkers. It can be a challenge, as toddlers are often looking down at their feet and scooting away from the camera. However, this phase of new discovery offers a great opportunity for serendipitous shots of your child in action.

Three to Four Years/With Sibling  
This is one of my favorite ages. Your child is now full of personality and sometimes there’s a new baby in the family, too. It’s a great time to get both children photographed together.

‘Tween/Older Children  
Full of personality and independence, kids of this age are a lot of fun to work with. The opportunities for creativity are almost endless. 

Luckily for me, I was able to take many of the types of shots of my son that I like to take for newborn clients. Still, I don’t necessarily have all of the shots I would be able to get in a dedicated newborn sitting because even as a photographer, it is hard to dedicate the time, attention and patience required to work with a newborn.

Tip # 7: Get in Close

Don’t be afraid to scoot in as close as you can when photographing your child, especially down on the ground at eye-level. Many amateur shots are taken so far back that you lose the best details: your child’s eye lashes, toes, the light in his or her eyes. Mix it up and come in close on some shots. You will love having an archive of all those little details later on.

Getting down on the ground to take photos will also change your perspective and help you see your child’s world from their vantage. You will have a better chance of getting your child to look straight into the camera and the surroundings you capture will reflect their universe.

Tip #8: Click, Click, Click

Over-shoot. Digital photography is free and unlimited. Pretend your child is a fashion model on a runway or magazine shoot set. Children are fast-moving and the tiniest details – whether their eyes are open or at half-mast, whether their face is well-lit or in the shadows, the position of a hand or foot – can make or break a shot. I find that it often takes 10 frames or more to get one great one. You’ll be happy to have choices when it comes time to edit your photos.

Tip #9: Pay Attention to the Background

Have you ever shot something brilliantly only to notice later that there’s an ugly Kleenex box or some other distracting element lurking in the background? I have done this more times than I can count and I always wish that I had noticed it in the moment. Luckily, if there is something small and pesky in a favorite photo, you can usually eliminate it or lessen its impact in the frame using Photoshop. An easier technique is to get in the habit of quickly taking stock of what’s in your camera frame before starting a shoot. Push the dirty laundry and homely toys out of the way before you begin a session. Afterwards, you can push it all back.

Tip # 10: Experiment With Framing Your Shot

Our instinct is to frame our subject in the center of the lens and start shooting. There are all sorts of professional rules about composing a photo, but the basic idea is this: framing your subject in the dead center of the shot time after time is boring. 

Instead, experiment with the composition of your shot. If your child is looking at something, include the thing he or she is looking at in the frame, even if it means your child is off-center. If your child is running, create space in the composition for your child to run into. Think about whether your shot is best composed horizontally or vertically.

If your camera has different focal points, learn how to adjust your focal point so that it moves out of the center position to the area filled by your subject. If you cannot do this, you may need to push your shutter half way down to lock the focus on your child before adjusting your composition and pushing all the way down to take the shot.

This article comes courtesy of the Adorama Learning Center and first appeared on the Estella-nyc.com blog

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October Weddings in Asheville

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October is our favorite time of year for photographing weddings!!

These mountains are amazing dressed in their fall color.

 Luxe House Photographic still has a few openings for fall weddings for October 2012.

Please contact us if you are looking for a wedding photographer in or around the Asheville area this fall.

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Asheville Senior Portrait Session Giveaway!!

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To kick off the 2013 Luxe House Senior Photography year,  I’m giving away a free senior session, a $150 value!  The contest will run from August 6th through August 13th.

A senior session includes:

  1. 1-2 hour session at 2 Asheville locations;  up to 3 outfit changes
  2. up to 30 professionally edited images in an online gallery
  3. complimentary 8 x 10 and 5 x 7 print
  4. 4 watermarked images for Facebook
  5. online print purchasing option
  6. customized Facebook timeline cover.
  7. Photo cd and prints are sold separately.

Here’s how to enter!

ENTRY Step #1: Like the Luxe House Photographic fan page.

ENTRY Step#2:  Message us and tell us why YOU (or your child) should win a free senior session!

On August 13th we will randomly choose a winner from all the entries!!!

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Asheville Bridal Portraits

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A fresh look on Asheville Bridal Portraits…….

Local Asheville Artists:

Photography: René Treece Roberts with Luxe House Photographic

Garments: Brooke Priddy, Ship to Shore Shop

Floral Design: Jessica Gregory, Aria Floral

Hair: Danielle Travers West One Salon

Make up: Zack Russell at Make up, Grove Arcade

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Blue Ridge Parkway Wedding

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Some weddings I have to remind myself that I’m actually working, and not just attending, they’re so fun. Mind you, I’m busy the entire time, striving hard to capture the most magical images I can, and every wedding I work on is a pleasure. Occasionally, though, the fun and frolicking and festivities are so infectiously wonderful, so deliciously delightful, that I find myself having an absolute blast the entire time. Those events, those weddings, are bliss. For the couple, the guests, and for me.

This recent wedding up at the historic Pisgah Inn on the Blue Ridge Parkway was one such wedding. The bride and groom choose a vintage mountain theme and customized numerous aspects, through either handmade touches they did themselves (the bride made the bunting flags, menus, programs, cork board seating chart, flower girl’s headband, place cards, signs, table runners, bridesmaid’s hair pieces, and burlap cone flower holders) or through crafts made by Etsy-sourced artisans (the custom birdie cake topper, earrings given to the bridesmaids as part of their gifts, tags used for names on the corkboard, and grey and white straws for drinking Cheerwine). Their French lavender and vanilla cake was made by Dough Bakery in Asheville and consisted of stacked layers of crepes, which is just genius. The lovely floral arrangements were made by the Flower Gallery of Asheville.

Other items were vintage, including the vases (all different shapes and sizes of vintage milk glass, mercury glass, and cracked ceramic pots) and the candle holders.  As part of their thank you gifts given to the bridesmaids and mothers, the couple gave each a vintage (but washed!) handkerchief collected from antique shops.  The bride also collected the vintage linen postcards that were used rather than a guest book.  Her ‘Old item’ was her maternal grandmother’s ring, worn on my right hand.  ‘New’ items included her shoes, dress, and headband, while her ‘Borrowed’ item was the pearl necklace, a family heirloom.  Lastly, the bride’s something ‘Blue’ came in the form of earrings, calcite and silver beauties made by Becky Kelso.

Every aspect of this wedding was so lovingly thought out and so cleverly executed. The day was gorgeous, the crowd was so much fun, and the air held a bit of magic in it. I have a feeling this was a perfect day for everyone involved, myself included.

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Bridal Portraits at Hidden River

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  “Hope is the Thing with Feathers” by Emily Dickenson

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I’ve heard it in the chilliest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity
It asked a crumb of me.

When it comes to weddings, why not be what they call “untraditional”?  Why not be unique, one of a kind,….you?  Forget David’s bridal.  Who is David anyway?  Brides, find the artists you love in your town and have them help you craft your dreams into reality.  Have a bouquet made from the sheet music of your favorite song.  Have a dress custom made from beech trees.  Stand in a field with a lone horse while a far off thunderstorm builds.  Let your hair down.  Skip the make-up.  Relax, breathe, and let your light shine out.

Garments:  Brooke Priddy, Ship to shore Shop,   http://shiptoshoreshop.com/

Floral Design:  Jessica Gregory, Aria Floral.  http://blueridgeflowers.com/

Jewelry:  Gabrielle Egan http://www.atelier24lexington.com/

Location:  Hidden River Events  http://hiddenriverevents.com/ 

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Hey Baby!

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One of my very favorite types of shoots to do is a maternity photoshoot.   Something magical seems to happen with the light every time.  All that talk about “the glow” is true.  It is great to document and celebrate the voluptuous curves and natural glow of pregnancy.  Here are a few photographs of a beautiful mama to be.   Taken at the beautiful Willow Creek Nursery using only the best organic natural light.

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Mountain Elopement

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 Elopement list….dress-check, rings-check, venue-check, photographer-check, bride-check, groom-check, umbrellas—-what??  Raindrops can’t stop this love.  We were so fortunate that the rain held for a quick photo session around the beautiful grounds of the Mountain Magnolia Inn.  Congratulations to Christine and Michael!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Early Spring Engagement Session

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This engagement session with Brent and Megan proves that all you really need in life is lots of love, some pretty sunlight and a little time to walk in the park .

This sweet couple came to me with all kinds of great ideas and examples of what they wanted.  They said “More than anything, we want to have fun”.

These photographs are taken by me, René Treece Roberts of Luxe House Photographic, at Asheville’s beautiful Botanical Gardens.

That soon-to-be-married glow is alive and well and it makes for really gorgeous engagement pictures.

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Early Mother’s Day

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I know it’s early to celebrate Mother’s day, but today my sister became a Grandma!  That makes me a Great Aunt.  I don’t feel old enough for that kind of title.

Today I want to celebrate life, birth, babies, Moms, and Grandmas.  Here’s too the joy and privilege of being a mother.

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Crest Center Asheville

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It’s high on a hilltop, yet so close to downtown Asheville.  Crest Center is such a great place for a wedding.  Here are a few photographs from early Spring by Luxe House Photographic.

Garments:  Brooke Priddy, Ship to shore Shop,   http://shiptoshoreshop.com/

Floral Design:  Jessica Gregory, Aria Floral.  http://blueridgeflowers.com/

Hair:  Danielle Travers West one salon http://www.westonesalon.com/

Make up: Zack Russell at Make up at Grove Arcade http://www.makeupatga.com/

Location http://thecrestcenter.com/