Category Archives: FAQ-PHOTOGRAPHERS

Staying Organized & Saving Time {For Photographers}

I think that one thing that separates a professional photographer for a hobbyist is the fact that they run their business professionally, in an organized and efficient manner.  Wearing so very many hats as a wedding photographer can be overwhelming if you do not have fine tuned systems in place for staying organized.  We have many different methods and ways to stay organized and keep our desks clean and our clients happy and well cared for.

I would like to share one of those simple methods with you today.

Because we travel so much for weddings (local & destination), and because life is busy, we rely on the free service of for our lists. We use it on our desktops & it also syncs with iphone apps (so that you can have your lists with you when you are out & about). Using this (free) program, has kept us very organized, made packing for trips & weddings so much easier and has kept a lot of our thoughts in the same place. I personally use my account for BOTH personal (hence shopping list & Rockwell’s babysitting list) and professional uses.

How it works, is you create Lists. You can see mine below in the grey headers. You can have as many “tasks” as you want, on any one list. And as many lists as you want.

For example, my “camera list”, is EXACTLY what I need to pack for wedding. Every single thing. So, before a wedding, I am not trying to think of what I need…or hoping that I don’t forget anything. It is all right there. I sat down ONCE and made a thorough/complete list and now, it saves me time & thinking. I just quickly print off a copy & cross things off with a pen as they get loaded into my bag/vehicle. It takes the thinking out of it for you.

Same with packing for a Destinaton wedding. Who wants to forget their passport, or the bride’s itinerary, or their camera battery chargers, or their swimsuit? With a thorough list (that you can add to as you think of new things), you never need to stand there and wonder what you are forgetting…… Or have to rethink what to pack. After printing the list, if you see something on the list that you don’t need for that particular trip, just cross it off with your pen & continue on packing.

I hope this blog post has been helpful. We really, honestly have found that using this program we have saved SO much time & SO much stress/panic with packing, remembering, shopping.

** As a side note, this is also a great program for Mom’s (or anyone).  You could have your *to clean*, *to organize*, *to take to soccer*, *kid’s lunch ideas*, *birthday plan ideas*, *clothing shopping*, *to talk to teacher about*, etc,etc,etc**

Much Love,


p.s. PHOTOGRAPHERS: Let me know if you find these type of blog posts helpful! thanks!


Jo Totes Camera Bag/Purse GIVEAWAY!!!

Jo Totes creates the CUTEST camera bags for women!! And they are giving away one of the Rose camera bags on our blog!! (winner can choose color!)

 They are functional, protective (padded) and very stylish. I think that having a fabulously stylish camera bag/purse is a great way to project your hip, luxury brand to your clients. It also sets you apart from other photographers that they may have seen or worked with.  They are also BEYOND fabulous for regular life (school sports, holiday trips, playdates, etc). Chase Jarvis says the best camera is the one that you have on you. I don’t know about you, but it pains me a little bit to take iphone pictures when I know I have fabulous gear to get an “amazing” shot. So now, you can carry your camera everywhere!

A must have for photographers, moms, and hobbyists!

Simple way to enter!

1) You must “Like” Eternal Reflections Photography & Jo Totes on facebook.

2)You must put on your facebook  status “Fabulous Edmonton Photographer giving away a darling Jo Totes camera purse!

3) You must Tag yourself in one of the Purse photos HERE (there will be as many photos as we need. We will keep adding more as they fill up until the end of the contest).

** BONUS:You can tag yourself an extra time for tweeting the above sentence (in addition to having it as your status), or you can tag yourself an extra time if you “suggest our page to friends” (on facebook) and if EVEN one your  friends decides to ”like” our page.

THE WINNER WILL BE CHOSEN USING in numerical order of the tags on the photo. (Ie picture 1 tags will be entries 1-50, picture 2 will be entries 51-100, and so on).

Rules: You can only tag yourself ONCE in any of the photos on facebook. (not once on EACH photo. Only once total) UNLESS you do the bonus entries (above), then you can get extra tags. You must have liked ERP  & Jo totes on facebook & have changed your status to the above sentence for your tag to count (or else it will be removed as a non valid entry).

Contest ends Wed March 9, 2011 at 8:00 pm.

*note: You are welcome to have your husbands, moms, best friends do the requirements & enter to win the bag FOR YOU! But they must do all of the steps. 


FAQ for Photographers [Edmonton, Victoria & Lower Mainland & Vancouver Luxury Wedding Photography]

Here is another round of [FAQ'S for Photographers]. We receive alot of questions from other photographers and we are trying our best to answer them all!
We hope you find these FAQ’S useful and helpful. xo

Where do you find inspiration to keep your photography creative and fresh?

I 100% find it in my clients. Each couples love is so unique and different, so I do my best to capture who they really are and how they connect with one another.

Do you like to use flash?  Or do you prefer to work with natural light?
We have mentioned this before in previous posts, but we love natural light, and use it 99% of the time.

What advice do you have for photographers starting out?
Practice, practice, practice…and then practice some more!! Know your camera inside and out. Get yourself comfortable in ANY lighting situation (this will relieve alot of stress for you on the wedding day, when you know you can shoot anywhere and nail the shots!)

What do you do when ‘Uncle Bill’ is following you around with his nice camera while you are doing formal/bride & groom photos?
To be honest, I have never really ran into this issue. Mainly because I make sure to educate my brides BEFORE the wedding day by sending them a ‘helpful tips & reminders’ email & it is mentioned in our contract. It not only makes there day go much more smoothly, but it helps me not run into any uncomfortable situations.

What type of camera bags do you own to hold your Camera gear?

For Weddings & Engagements, I have the Shootsac. Which is perfect for fast lens changes and is very comfortable to wear!
I  also have a quilted *Emera  Camera purse that I love! It makes me feel like Audrey Hepburn and is perfect for work & personal use.
And finally, when going to each wedding and travelling for destination weddings, I have a  Lowepro bag. Which is great for carry everything and keeping it safe and sound.

When you shoot destination weddings, do you ‘check’ your camera gear with your other luggage?

Heck no! I carry that bulky bag on the plane with me. Wherever I go, it comes with me. I have travelled quite a bit, and I have learned that airlines are terrible for losing luggage. And that is one peice of luggage that I cannot lose. I would die a thousand deaths, if I showed up at the destination airport and they said my camera bag was lost….
So like I said, it comes with me. If I had to, I would jump on the conveyer belt and ride the plane in the cargo hold with all the luggage- hey, at least there would be more leg room ;)

Sometimes when I check in, they notice how bulky it is and they will weigh my Lowepro bag, and of course, it will be over weight. But then I distribute lenses and cameras between the Lowepro and my *Emera  Camera purse.  (you are allowed 1 personal bag and 1 carry on bag). And once I am back on the plane, I put it all back into my Lowepro bag. sneaky sneaky.

Do you always shoot at a 1.2 aperture or wide open?
Nope. I sure don’t. Lenses are known to be sharper at the 2-2.8 range. There is alot of hype about shooting ‘wide open’, which, don’t get me wrong can make for beautiful amazing shots, however, alot of time I find that staying in the 2-2.8 range makes for crisper/sharper images.

So, the wedding is over, what do you do?
I get into my car, play some lovey-dovey songs from my ipod, think about how much I love Matt and how grateful I am to have him. Seriously. Weddings put me on a ‘love high’.
Once I get home, I throw myself on couch & bed, and Matt will give me the best foot massage in the world. He knows how tired they are after a wedding.
After that, I back up all of my images to three different places. Desktop, and 2 external hard drives. Once they are all backed up, I sleep soundly.


FAQ- Photographers {posing}

Mandy asked:

How and where do you come up with all your poses? I am really lovin weddings but I don’t always wanna do the same poses… Yours are always different. Do you just think of them on the spot?

Yes, we do.

I think that every photographer (& every person for that matter) sees the world a little bit differently. So one of the best resources that we have is each other. I don’t mean going to people’s blogs & right-clicking. You cannot steal creativity. For one thing, you won’t remember the pose & for another thing, you are not being very authentic. What I find the most beneficial, is to team up with another photographer (in my case, Kari) & have her shoot me & Adam.

While our style is similar (to provide consistency for all Eternal Reflections Photography clients), we definitely each have our own thoughts, flair & ideas. When I was doing Kari & Matt’s shoot, I just did my thing. Did shots/poses as they came into my mind (and a few things I had envisioned before when I was thinking about the shoot). Kari was amazed at some of the ideas that I had, that she had never thought of. The same thing happens when she photographs me & Adam….I see the world differently & I get fresh new ideas.

But what makes it even better then just pursuing other photographers blogs for inspiration? I lived the experience (as the model), the pictures mean something to me, so when I’m on a shoot, I will remember them! They are something Ive lived, done & looked at. That is far more powerful then looking at blog after blog, trying to remember or right-clicking images.

So, my suggestion, is to team up with another photographer & swap photoshoots. It is amazing how much you can learn from being on the other end of the camera.

On that note, my photography style became far more lovely & unique (“modely”) once kari had done a few model shoots of me. We both learned how to direct a client(s) in an efficient way. This was learned by me telling kari “ok, now be fabulous” and her staring up at me blankly “what does that mean”? So by shooting each other, we have learned what to say to help a client give a certain look, or to achieve a certain feeling in an image.

Some of our most “wow” images are from having set up a scenerio & getting the clients to either act it our or imagine it. They are taken to that place in their mind & can just be real. Thus real looking photos, from real moments.

I hope I am making sense here……

So my advice:

Find a photographer who inspires you & offer a photo swap.

Also, take inspiration from your surroundings. So often we are looking down at our screen, or down the lens that we miss something in nature or architecture that would make a really “WOW” picture.


FAQ– What are your questions?

Our studio has been crazy busy & we still are with weddings! This blog will have tons of new lovelies

coming up for you to look at! Stay tuned! We are just getting caught up with everything.

We just wanted to give you photographers a heads up that we will be doing more FAQ posts starting in
about a month. We have a folder in our inbox saved with tons of your emails and we will start answering them!
You are also welcome to ask us more & we will try to answer them!! or comment below.

Below are a couple of quick snapshots that a photographer (stephanie) who I was One on One  mentoring shot of me 2 weekends ago.