Product Spotlight: Fine Art Wedding Albums

If you haven’t had a chance to check out our fine art wedding album samples, you are missing out. They are absolutely beautiful! We wanted to tell you a bit about them, so that you can appreciate them as much as we do.

We custom design each album that we deliver to you. We spend a long time on the layout, design of the cover & box and the color scheme. We will customize your album and its box to match your colors and/or theme. Before we order it, we will sit down with you and go through every page, the design,etc to make sure that you love it. That way, we don’t order something you are unhappy with.

All of our albums (with the exception of small friendship session & photo booth albums) come from a castle in Italy. That’s right…I said a castle. Here’s a photo of it:

1

Once the albums are put together, they are shipped back here to the states. We review every album to make sure that it is perfect before we deliver it to you. I will give you a warning, people tend to cry when they get their album for the first time. Don’t worry, we will provide you with tissues.

If you want more information about our albums or wedding photography, please contact us. You can call, email or use the form below.

 

Ruskin FL; Our March adventure

So, every month we make it a point to go on a road trip to a new location. We blindly pick our destination and hit the road. In March, we only had a part of a day to explore, as work schedules just got in the way. So, luckily we picked something close to Tampa.

RuskinFL_033118_006

We hit the road in the afternoon and headed to the not real big town of Ruskin. We really have no idea how big the town is, or what the population is but we did find a couple of interesting things to look at. Unfortunately, because of how late we had to leave, we weren’t able to see everything (the park was closed) but we did check out a couple of places and had a pretty good dinner.

We went by the firehouse cultural center and an odd looking roundish building that had all kinds of paintings on the outside. Then we went to Popi’s and tried their Monte Cristo sandwiches. Overall, it was a nice couple of hours, but we will probably need to go back and see the stuff we didn’t get to see. Until that time, we can at least say “Ruskin? Yup, we’ve been there!”

Questions to ask when looking for a photographer

Whether you are getting married, having a baby, graduating high school or updating your family portrait, choosing the right photographer can be a daunting task. There are so many photographers and faux-tographers out there, its hard to know who to pick.

Many people don’t really know what questions to ask, so they go right to “how much is an 8×10”. That’s an important question, but by no means is it the only question and you certainly shouldn’t base your choice on that.

Before you email or call anyone, decide what your budget it. That will help you when they start talking about services. Here are some questions we feel are important to find out before you say yay or nay (These are numbered but are in no particular specific order):

  1. Do you belong to any professional photography organizations? (PPA is a well known one. There are also local state orgs)
  2. What kind of photography education/training do you have?
  3. How long have you been a professional photographer?
  4. What do your session/package/collection fees start at?
  5. Do you have a website?
  6. Do you have references from past clients?
  7. How long do your sessions last?
  8. What do you specialize in?
  9. What is your turn around time for viewing/ordering?
  10. How long will it take to get my prints/albums/canvases?
  11. How many weddings have you photographed?
  12. Is your business licensed in the state of ___________?
  13. Do you have business insurance?
  14. Approximately how many images will I see from the session?
  15. How long do I have to order prints after my session/wedding/event?
  16. What is included in the session/package/collection?
  17. Do you charge for travel?
  18. Are the images on your website of paying clients or models?
  19. Do you charge extra for weekday v.s weekend?
  20. Will I need to sign a contract? (this sounds very legal, but is very important to protect you and the photographer)

That is not an all-inclusive list, but should give you a head start on doing your research. Beware of photographers who won’t answer questions or who try to divert you away from your questions. Also, be willing to talk about what you are looking for and be open to ideas and suggestions. Hope this helps!

To contact us with any questions, feel free to call or use the form below:

 

 

Fort De Soto Park: Our February Road Trip

For our February road trip, we went to Fort De Soto Park, just South of St. Petersburg, FL. Our road trip plan is to pick a place blindly each month, but we had other things going on that day, so we weren’t able to really go out of town. Since the Fort was a place we had talked about going before, we decided to go there.

On the way there, we came upon 2 toll plazas. Of course neither of us had any cash. I managed to scrounge up $1.00 in change between my car, and my camera bag. Then we got to another one that was $.75 but we had nothing except some pennies! So, we had to turn around, go back to a gas station and buy stuff so we could get change.

Once we got there, we decided to eat lunch at the park. We had a gourmet meal of a microwaved (for way to long) hot dog and a ham and cheese sandwich (pre-made, on regular bread wrapped in foil).

Lunch at Fort De Soto
Our “gourmet” lunch”

After lunch, we walked out on to the pier, where we saw a dolphin. It was swimming close enough that you could hear it blow out air every time it surfaced. Then we went over to where the fort is and explored the ruins. We also went to the museum and read about the history of the fort and the soldiers who were stationed there. Its a pretty interesting area and and important to the history of Tampa Bay.

After we left the fort, we drove around the rest of the park and hung out for a while at a small beach that looked towards the Skyway bridge. The water was really nice and there were fish jumping all over the place.

Eventually, we left there and headed north to Indian Rocks beach for Thai food. I don’t know if you have ever been to Thai-Pan alley, but the food is yummy and they have a covered, outdoor patio.

It was a great day and its always fun to be able to see new things and take pictures just for fun. We went to a new place, saw some cool stuff, learned some history and had some fantastic food. Sometimes, the life of a photographer is really, really cool.

Senior Portraits….yup, its about that time

Danielle_070

If you are getting ready to graduate in a few months, you have probably taken your Senior photos. However, if you have completely procrastinated, and haven’t, we encourage you to hurry up and schedule an appointment. We can still get you in and photographed before graduation.

Senior Portraits

If you are in the Class of 2019 (or a parent of someone in this class)……you definitely need to go ahead and start thinking about scheduling your session. I know your still a Junior, but it will be summer before you know it and you will be a Senior. There is a lot happening your Senior year, and portraits are a huge part of that. Parents and grandparents love to have portraits as their kids/grand-kids grow up and this will probably be your last session before you are “all grown up and an adult” and thrown out into the “real world”.

taliat_senior_100116_025

Whether you live in Florida or you will be coming here for vacation this summer, we would love to photograph you.

So contact us ASAP to schedule your Senior session for this Spring/Summer/Fall. Its never to early to lock in your session. Contact us through the form below to set up your free consultation so we can talk about what you want!

SamSpivey_062916_003

Answers to some of your FAQ’s

We thought it would be a good idea to address some of the FAQ’s that we get regularly in an effort to make your photography experience as simple and easy to understand as possible. Here goes:

Q: How long have you 2 been together?

A: LOL. We aren’t together and have never been. We are best friends, roommates and business partners, but that’s the extent of it. Don’t worry, you’re not the only one to make that mistake.

Q: What are your prices?

A: Well, that depends. What kind of photography are you looking for? We do portraits, weddings, quinceanera’s, events and photo booths, so you will have to be a bit more specific. I can tell you for sure though that we would be happy to sit down with you and discuss everything in detail.

Q: Do you offer wedding or quinceanera packages?

A: We offer wedding collections, which are similar to packages but sound way fancier. They include different increments of time, different albums and other things. They ALL include 2 photographers, basic retouching and an online gallery of web-sized images.

Q: Can I get my images on a DVD, CD or flash drive?

A: We provide you with something WAY better then those…prints and albums! We can make you prints in any size  you would like and you will be happy to have them, rather then a DVD that gets scratched on the way home, then lost for 10 years in a kitchen junk drawer. We are print artists and we want you to have something you can treasure forever.  Also, we do have an online gallery available A La Carte if you really want images to share on social media.

425x55-Accordion-Template

Q: How do I get on the list to receive an awesome Christmas card each year?

A: IKR? They are awesome and take months of planning to create. To get one, simply become a client, friend, family or collaborator.

Q: Do you give print or copy-rights to images?

A: We do not. This will probably be the only question you could ask that will be met with a straight up no. There is no sneak around this one, it is what it is.

I know that’s just a few basic questions, but we are more then happy to answer any others you can come up with. Just shoot us a message through the form below or send us an email, text message, phone call, IG message, SOS, or some smoke signals.

 

Williston, FL: Jess & Tony’s January Road Trip Adventure

As many of you are aware, we love to travel. We go anywhere possible whenever possible. We have driven places to take photos, to try new restaurants, for conventions, to meet clients and just because.

For 2018, we decided that we were going to pick a place in Florida blindly to visit each month. One of us basically closes our eyes and points to a spot on the map and that’s where we go. We don’t google the place, and we don’t use GPS. We are going old school style. Get there and see what we find.

IMG_6099

In January, we blindly picked Williston. Neither of us had ever heard of it, but that’s the way the game works, so on January 13th, off we went. Turns out, Williston is about 2 hours North of Tampa, close to Gainsville. It is a small town with some friendly people.

IMG_6078

 

 

We 1st went to what looked like a granary and did a few photos, then on to a park that had a Howitzer. It was not particularly warm on January 13th, but we did get some nice photos. After that, we headed to lunch at a local place called Melanies Restaurant, which is located inside an old gas station. There, we both ordered the special, which was smothered country friend steak. It was yummy. We also talked to some really nice people who lived there and they directed us to our next photo destination.

After lunch, we took the advice and headed North for about 1.5 miles. There we found Cedar Lakes Woods & Gardens, which is a beautifully built botanical garden, complete with a Japanese garden area. (They are also apparently a wedding venue, so if your looking for something different….) We trekked around the gardens for awhile, photographing various things, checking out the Koi pond and stalking the swans (that was all Tony).

Once we got back to the entrance, we decided we should head back to Tampa, as it was getting to late afternoon and Tony had to work that evening. So back on the road we went.

Overall, our trip to Williston was a good day. We had some good food, met some nice people and got to see some new stuff. We shall see where the map takes us in February!

P.S. Tony never got a photo of the swan, it kept turning away from him.

That’s (almost) a wrap…..

Well, Sunday will be the end of 2017 and Monday will see the world waking up to a brand new year, with new goals, plans and resolutions. 2017 has been a big year for DLPS, and we thought we would share a few of our exploits with you.

We started the year off right, by attending Imaging USA in San Antonio, TX. We attended lectures, went to parties and barely slept! Then we drove straight to Southern LA to attend a 5 day, intensive CPP prep class. By the end of those 2 events, we were both fried and needed a vacation.

In March, we took the Certified Professional Photographer exam and both passed. This is the 1st step to becoming certified. We also took a trip to FL to find a place to live and check out Tampa & the surrounding area. We stayed with some friends whom Jess hadn’t seen in close to 20 years. Luckily, Vermonters are friendly and always willing to welcome old friends.

In April, we moved to Tampa, FL from Monroe LA. We decided to come to Tampa for a change of scenery, city size and new opportunities. In doing so, we left behind a lot of fantastic people who were really supportive of our plan to build a photography business.

In June, Jess earned her Certified Professional Photographer certification through PPA and can now write CPP after her name. To earn this distinction, a photographer must demonstrate that they are knowledgeable and skilled in various aspects of photography, and must pass a written test, then submit 15 images through a panel of 5 professional photographers.

In July we went back to LA to attend the annual convention for LA Professional Photographers in New Orleans. We spent 4 days expanding our education, in addition to hanging out with some of our favorite LA photographers. We brought 2 of our LA models back to FL for 3 days of photography in the sun!

August was a hot, humid month, but we did get to go to Universal Studios with some family visiting from Hawaii. Jess learned that she is going to be an Aunt and we got to hang out in the land of Harry Potter! Plus we watched the eclipse through homemade pinhole cameras.

In Sept, we once again made the trek to LA, this time to Monroe & Shreveport for the annual Barksdale AF Ball. We also did senior portraits for Cam, a soon-to-be graduate in Bastrop, LA. We were able to visit some of our favorite restaurants and hang out with some of our favorite people. We also attended LightPro in St. Petersburg, which is one of our all time favorite conferences. Plus we survived Irma, our first Hurricane!!

November saw us heading North to Vermont, where we spent Thanksgiving with the Wakefield family. Of course we got out and took pictures, got some much needed rest and hung out in the snow. Tony also learned the basics of being a blacksmith.

In December, we donated 2 photo booths. One was for photos with Santa at Inspired Living in Tampa with many of their residents. The other was at the Christmas Charity Ball in Tampa, to raise money towards sponsoring families for Christmas. This was a great success and the charity was able to sponsor 60 families in the Tampa area.

Those are some of the highlights of 2017. We are still learning about everything Tampa has to offer and of course still working on getting to know people here. There are many places to see and things to do that we have yet to experience, but its all part of the fun. We will continue to build and grow our business here and are looking forward to a successful and fun 2018. We wish everyone a Happy New Year and will see you all in 2018!

Danville, Vermont USA

For the Thanksgiving holiday, we decided to get out of dodge and head north, to visit my (Jess’) family in Danville, VT. If you think you have never been to Danville, its possible you have, but you accidentally blinked while you were driving or riding and soared right through without noticing. Its a quaint New England town, sitting in the northeastern part of Vermont, about 55 miles south of the Canadian boarder and 20 minutes west of New Hampshire.

We flew into Boston, then took a bus north into New Hampshire, where we were met by my parents. My Dad recently had throat surgery to remove some cancerous lumps, so he regaled us with tales of the hallucinations he had while on the medication while we drove the 1+ hr further north to my parents house.

We were there for 7 days, 2 of which were spent traveling. My brother and his family came as well, so the house was plenty full (7 people, 3 dogs and 3 cats). While there, we hung out, played cards & Yahtzee, watched some westerns and of course took photos.

Barn in Danville, VT
A barn in Danville, VT

Tony took a crash course in the art of blacksmithing. He quickly learned that the hammer gets heavier with every swing. (That might be due in part to him taking 100 hits to achieve something that my dad can do in 10) Regardless, he made a plant hanger that we will definitely use on the patio.

 

We also traveled to Bretton Woods, NH to the Mount Washington Hotel Resort. Its a beautiful old hotel at the base of Mt. Washington and has some fantastic views from its wrap around balcony.

mount washington hotel, NH
The Mt. Washington Hotel, Bretton Woods, NH

Of course, with my niece Zoey there, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to take some portraits. Zoey takes after my sister Eliza, the horse trainer. Zoe loves all things horses and is beside herself with joy any time she is around my moms horse Arlo.

Zoey & Arlo
Zoey & Arlo

Overall, we had a fun trip and it was great to see some family. It even snowed a couple of times. Apparently, it snowed quite a bit more the day we left, as my mom texted me a photo of it snowing with a text that said “thanks for wishing it would snow”. I can only assume she was being sarcastic. We arrived back in Tampa on Monday night, flying in to a beautiful sunset over the water.

Sunset over Florida
Sunset over Clearwater/Tampa

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑