We have such a talented pool of wedding photographers, florists, stylists and caterers in Vermont. Today our occasional series of expert advice brings you “6 Reasons to Make Time for an Engagement for an Engagement Shoot” by photographer Garren Poirier.
Now that you’re engaged you must be busy planning the details of your big day. With all that is going on it can be easy to overlook this unique stage of your lives. It’s a time filled with anticipation, joy and love; capturing this moment in your life can be just as exciting as your wedding day.
Whether you are keen on having your photo taken or not, the benefits of taking part in an engagement shoot (popularly referred to as an e-shoot) may not be immediately apparent, so here are a few reasons you shouldn’t pass up the opportunity for your pre-wedding photo shoot!
1. Get yourself some sweet photos!
Sounds pretty obvious, right? As time inches closer to the big day you find yourself getting busier and busier. Early in the engagement is the perfect time for an e-shoot; while the excitement of the proposal and visions of the future are still fresh in your mind, that emotion will be clearly evident in your photos. Sure you’ll have photos on your wedding day, but this is different! Your wedding is the day planned for a party with your family and friends, but this shoot is all about YOU. While the wedding day will flash before your eyes, the e-shoot is slow paced and allows you to really soak in the time you have together. Grabbing those raw emotions just between the two of you is a rare opportunity and you’ll be glad to have this to look back on when you’re old and grey. Also, wouldn’t it be great to have some fab photos of you NOT in wedding threads? Wedding gowns and tuxedos aren’t exactly our everyday attire.
2. A chance to let loose and get creative.
You have an opportunity to take some truly unique photos, different from any you’ve had before, so make good use of it! Start with the location and pick a place that means something to both of you. It can be where you got engaged, a first date or just a very memorable date, where you met (maybe your high school/university). It can be any place that puts you at ease, something familiar that naturally makes you feel good, such as the zoo, a beach, or even your regular coffee shop. Where ever you decide, make it mean something to you.
Don’t forget to get creative! You can create a theme (bake some cookies together) or bring props (maybe you are sports fanatics). Whatever it is, think colorful, let loose and tap into your imagination.
3. Your photos are actually pretty useful!
Speaking of creativity, your photos aren’t limited to the confines of a picture frame! Many savvy do-it-yourselfers are using their e-shoot photos in many crafty ways. Use them for save-the-date cards, receptions seating charts and table indicators, wedding programs, guest books, or even just a really awesome coffee table book for home.
4. Practice for the big day. This is most important in my opinion!
Chances are you haven’t had your photos taken by a professional before, so how do you know what to do? On your wedding day you’ll be surrounded by cameras, not just the one you hired. With everything that is going on during the day, it’s great to have one less thing to worry about.
Whether you are camera shy or a photogenic vixen, the e-shoot is a great opportunity to instill confidence and build comfort in front of the camera. It can be daunting to have a camera follow you, it happens to all of us, and it’s best to get that anxiety out of the way in advance. In no time, you’ll stop focusing on the camera and more on each other. Your nerves will calm and your stress will float away. Your interactions with each other will become more natural and you’ll learn to avoid the innate reflex to stiff up and smile directly into the camera.
If you want to really make it a true dry run, try coordinating your e-shoot with your hair and makeup trials; it will allow you the chance to see how they show up in photos.
5. Letting your photographer get to know YOU.
Not only is it good practice for you, it’s also a great trial run for your photographer. It allows him/her to see how you interact; to learn if you are timid or big on the PDA. They will learn about your personalities, whether you are goofy or serious, and how much direction you’ll need or want. It’s a great time to learn about your love story, chat about your wedding plans, and push to see how affectionate you can get in front of the camera. The opposite is also true, you’ll be able to communicate what you like and don’t like, as well as your preference for angles, expressions, lighting, and editing styles. All this will allow them to tailor the photos to make your images more personal and memorable.
6. Getting to know your photographer.
It’s great to have your photographer get to know you, but it’s more important that you get to know THEM. Get a taste of their shooting style and learn how they direct you. It will be very similar to how they direct you on the wedding day so you’ll know exactly what to expect. Chat with them about your wedding plans and get tips about planning out the schedule. Your photographer has seen it all and probably has a ton of advice on how to organize the day and minimize rushing and delays.
Lastly, think about this, you will likely see your photographer more than anyone else on your wedding day … including your fiancé! The e-shoot is a perfect ice breaker to transform your photographer from a ‘stranger’ taking your photos to a ‘friend’ taking your photos. Establish a relationship with your photographer (and all your vendors for that matter). Get to know his personality & hobbies to the point where you feel comfortable enough with them that you’ll look forward to spending time with them on your wedding day.
I can’t stress enough how important it is to book an engagement shoot! It’s also nice to have an amazing venue to shoot it at…The amazing people at Riverside Farm have always been kind enough to let me bring clients there to not only have an amazing property to capture this session but for my clients to see the in’s and out’s of what Riverside has to offer for a wedding event. Between the amazing barns, fields and fences Riverside captures the true essence of what Vermont is all about. Riverside Farm as a venue works for me strictly because of its charm and unique way of making everyone who walks on to it’s grounds take a step back and realize how beautiful Vermont is!”
To find out more about a wedding at Riverside Farm or Amee Farm lodge call us today (888) 618-7017or use our contact form.
Today we’re pleased to present another in our series of expert advice blog posts. Every photographer brings a new perspective to weddings here on our grounds. They help us see our rustic but elegant New England wedding locations in new ways. One of the things we love about photographer Sabin Gratz, is that he brings that fresh eye to each wedding he shoots here. We asked him to share with us some of the things a wedding photographer thinks about when approaching a venue like ours.
As a wedding photographer, I am often asked about my favorite wedding locations. While I’ve photographed in some amazing places throughout the country and around the world, when it comes to weddings, my heart is still, and will probably always be, with my home state of Vermont.
Riverside Farm exemplifies everything I love about shooting in the Green Mountain State. The property is set in expansive fields and meadows that give way to wooded hills in the distance. It’s a view reminiscent of my childhood growing up here and one that I find great comfort in working in. The several beautifully renovated New England barns and carriage houses are filled with some of the most wonderful details and textures. In photos, they all come together in a way that is effortless and authentic, while displaying the level of style that I feel weddings need.
As a visual artist, I know that great aesthetics on a location have a lot to do with the success of my work, but as the owner of a business, I’ve also come to realize that the people who run and staff venues are often just as important. I have been lucky enough to work closely with the Riverside staff over the years and so appreciate the dedication and focus they have given to me, my team, and every couple that we have shot there.
I honestly can’t say enough great things about Riverside Farm. It is one of the spots that I first comes to mind when couples are looking for a place to get married in Vermont. Riverside has so many more wedding stories to tell, and I look forward to capturing them in the years to come.
It’s April, and our first Riverside Farm wedding weekend has arrived. We thought you might enjoy a behind the scenes peek at how we prepare for our first Riverside Farm wedding of the season. So much has already been done behind the scenes, both by our team and by the couple. Caterers and menus have been chosen, an officiant, a DJ or band. Here at Riverside couples have a lot of choices once they start to work with us. Will the ceremony be inside or outside? In the Stonewell barn, the Red Barn? And where will you hold your rehearsal dinner, the wedding dinner, a Sunday brunch? The weekend we’ll be hosting high tea! With all that going on, a team meeting for all of our in house staff is critical.
Then it’s all hands on deck! Since each wedding on our multiple wedding sites is unique that means lots of moving, sorting and cleaning that our couples, their families and guests never know about. Unless they look here…
Vermont is a a stunning place to live and to visit. But like much ofNew England we do have to wait a little longer than some of you for spring to hit us full bloom. Still, we rejoice in each tiny sign that warm sun, verdant mountains, barefoot running and swimming in the wild streams will be here soon. One sign of spring here in Pittsfield is the first wedding of the season. We got wedding season off the ground this weekend with a sweet and intimate affair at our own Amee Farm Lodge. We thought you might like a peek behind the scenes as we get ready for our wedding guests to arrive…and anticipate the first green of spring.
There are so many choices to be made when planning your wedding. We can help you with breathtaking Vermont destination wedding locations. But what about some of the more personal choices? Picking music for your first dance can seem daunting, but it shouldn’t be. There are so many choices out there, and it is easy to lean on the internet for help. First, sit down with your partner and have a brainstorming session. Think of songs you like. Is there a song that was playing when you first met? Or the moment you knew your love was meant to be? Maybe it’s a song you just love to dance to? Some couples choose a song that expresses the way they feel about each other, through the lyrics or the music. There are some fantastic timeless wedding classics like Etta James singing “At Last,” or Randy Travis singing “For Ever and Ever Amen,” and a google search with give you new ideas too.
For fun, we’ve compiled a list of some more unique choices for first dance. Feel free to comment below with your ideas too! Then enjoy photos of some of our couples enjoying their first dance.
Music you might not have thought of for your first dance:
love song by 311
Dream A Little Dream by Mamas & the Papas
Be Mine or The One I Love by David Gray
Gamble Everything For Love by Ben Lee
The Luckiest by Ben Folds
Love Song by The Cure
Your Arms by The Lemonheads
You and me by The cranberries
To find out more about a wedding at Riverside Farm or Amee Farm lodge call us today (888) 618-7017
At Riverside Farm we love weddings. We love Vermont weddings. We love Barn Weddings. We love our exclusive destination weddings. AND we love the professionals we work with who elevate our weddings at Riverside Farm and Amee Farm Lodge to a higher level. This is the first in our occasional series of advice from some of the wedding experts we work with.
Stylist Vivian Infantino’s Top 10 Wedding Day Makeup “considerations” for Brides
The eyes have it. Eyes being our most expressive feature, on your wedding day you want them to shine. You want eye-color (not your makeup colors) to pop; basically you want definition and some intensity, to show your best you. You can get a subtle “smoky eye” with soft bronzes and browns mixed with deep charcoals. Consider lash extensions over false lashes (strip or singles); they are so much more natural AND you’ll have them on for your honeymoon. Eye makeup done properly will last 10+ hours.
More is not necessarily more. Some tipsters say you need more makeup than you think on your wedding day. (I am not in agreement.) To make sure you look radiant (your best self) in person, and are photograph-able from any angle (I’m talking makeup and hair here) for gorgeous shots, your makeup application needs to read so that you look in photos as you do in person! Your makeup should give you appropriate definition ( my favorite word!), be appropriate to the dress you are wearing, the flowers, the overall ambiance and style of your event. It’s easier to add more makeup, than take too much away.
Picking a Foundation color. It should match your neck; your face should be neither lighter nor darker than your neck…. Be careful of getting too much sun on your decollete…. (skip the farmer’s tan, what can I say!) If you spray tan, do it early in the week so the color is settled for the wedding. Air-brushed makeup will not necessarily be more “perfect” than a classic application of makeup; an HD foundation is actually a brilliant option for perfect coverage that still allows skin to show through. (Mineral makeup is not appropriate for photographs as it is too light reflective.)
Using Concealer. A concealer with a peach tone (peach offsets blue/purple) covers deep/dark under-eye circles. Concealer should have a perfect cream to powder balance; too creamy leaves creases, too dry looks cakey. And occasionally a concealer is best applied AFTER foundation.
Lipstick longevity. Think about it, there’s bound to be some kissing and some champagne consumption, so you know you will want a touchup lip color. One trick is to pencil color, powder, place lip color or pencil over, and lightly gloss… Some companies, such as Nars, are making lip pencils to match their lipstick colors (Nars Dolce Vita is lovely). Lip pencils make touch ups a breeze. You can also keep it simple with a tinted gloss, which is easy to carry and apply without a mirror.
Bring YOUR favorite products! You may have a foundation or mascara that you know works well for you. A professional makeup artist will gladly work with you so that you are satisfied with any and all product choices on the day of your wedding! A good makeup artist will and should bring a broad selection of brand and product!!
Touch up is always key. You’ll need blotting papers or a finishing powder and your lip color (your Maid of Honor should be the keeper of the goods!) If you’re feeling extra cautious, throw in your waterproof mascara. My favorite finishing powder is Teint Poudre by Dr. Hauschka. A key ingredient is silk, a natural anti-bacterial. Finely milled, this finishing powder can be reapplied without buildup or looking powdery. Your wedding celebration may last 10 hours, your makeup should too, and you want to be perfect for all photos that will be taken!
Look at wedding photos. Check out Pinterest posts for looks you like. Bring pictures and/or your iPad with Pinterest posts or your inspiration board, with for your preview; send photos and inspiration boards in advance to your stylists so you can be on the same page when interpreting a “look”.
Who’s your photographer? How does the photographer tell a wedding story, how do they “capture” the bride, her beauty, the guests and the day? Is there the same level of energy and presence from the first photos to the last? The photographer is telling your story and you are the protagonist in what really is the fashion photo shoot of your life: Your makeup matters. Your hair style matters. Your photographer matters.
Get the best makeup artist and hair stylist you can. This aspect of your wedding should rise to the top of the list! A great makeup artist and hair stylist will make sure you have the best products, will know the considerations for varying weather, resilience, lighting, time of day, and ambiance of your wedding along with having a good understanding of how your photographer works. Your wedding vendors, including your makeup artist and hair stylist, actually make up a team that comes together with the goal and desire to provide you a seamless, beautiful experience.
~Stylist Vivian Infantino firstname.lastname@example.org
To find out more about a wedding at Riverside Farm or Amee Farm lodge call us today (888) 618-7017
We’ve decided to give away a FREE night at our own Amee Farm Lodge just down the street here in Pittsfiield, Vermont.
Our fully-restored post-and-beam farmhouse features 15 deluxe guest bedrooms with wide-planked pine floors, hand-hewn wooden furniture, comfy beds, and private bathrooms with stone-lined showers and lovely large rain showerheads. There are several spacious common areas, including an inviting wrap-around porch with Adirondack chairs for admiring the scenery and the resident farm animals. The property boasts 40 scenic acres complete with two ponds, a waterfall, hiking and biking trails, and a magnificent view of the Green Mountains from every corner.
To enter visit our Facebook page.
Summer weddings are a joy. Fall weddings a symphony of color. Winter weddings pristine.
Today, we’re just enjoying the snowy view. Isn’t it “snow” beautiful!
That is what a wedding should be. A celebration of pure joy. This photo shows a unique angle of our Brown Barn wedding reception space and captures one of the many moments of JOY made visible we see here every wedding weekend.
One of the best things about hosting weddings here at Riverside Farm in Pittsfield, Vermont are the wonderful people we meet. The amazing couples in love, their excited supportive families, and all of the talented creative professionals that help transform a wedding into an exquisite experience.
This week photographer Michelle Gardella wrote about her experience here at Riverside.
Driving into Pittsfield, I honestly thought I was dreaming. “This has got to be the most adorable New England town ever,” I whispered to my husband, our two children sound asleep in the backseat. It didn’t take long to confirm my sentiments. One quick stop at the Original General Store for some snacks, penny candy and an amazing hot meal (yes, you read that right!!) and I was completely smitten. While we sat and enjoyed our food, we read all about the town’s history, and the incredible family who arrived not so long ago to breathe new love and life into the area.
“Wow,” was all we kept saying to each other. “Wow.”
While the trip felt very much like a vacation, we were actually there to shoot a wedding at Riverside Farm.
I’m going to tell you the honest-to-goodness truth about this venue. It is, hands down, one of our top five locations ever to shoot. Ever.
The farm offered the most perfect mix of sophistication, attention to detail, and New England charm that we have ever experienced. Sure there are a million barns, but none of them, not one, have we seen that delivered this level of service. Nothing even comes close.
As we drove away from Pittsfield after our short stay, my husband suddenly shouted, “Wait! Turn around! I want to get one more thing!” He ran into the general store and came out with the paper, and flipped immediately to the real estate section. We loved it so much, we actually started researching a vacation home there!
This town, the amazing family who rescued it, and the incredible energy of the land, has our hearts 100% and we cannot wait to go back!