New Website is LIVE!!!

Let’s rewind……   I was sitting at Starbucks studying for a big engineering exam in September, 2012….. after “casually” eavesdropping for on a group of women for a minute, I quickly realized they were talking about one of the girls’ weddings.  I could instantly tell that one was the photographer and the other was the bride!  I was so distracted (studying was useless) and I waited another hour until they were done with their conversation.  As soon as they got up, I turned around and said “umm do you need a videographer??”  I hadn’t officially started my business yet since I was going to wait until my test was over in October.  But moments like these don’t just happen!  I found myself so angry that I didn’t have a website up yet so I handed the bride a slip of paper with my phone number and personal email.  That same night I went home and created an email, Facebook page and website.  I had to move quick!

Fast forward to today!  After using my previous site for about a year and a half, I started following along with SiteHouse Designs!  Their website designs are so clean and modern I was just itching to redo my site into something more my style.  They soon started to announce some giveaways with different photographers.  As luck would have it, Katelyn James Photography did a giveaway and I won!  I couldn’t believe it.  Thanks to Katelyn and SiteHouse, I am so excited to debut my new site!  Head over to www.lisahadleystudios.com to take a peek!  Hope you like it!

Lisa Hadley Studios WebsiteTemplate design by Lindsay Letters and Promise Tangeman.

Bridal Shower Activity – The Newlywed Game

Showering your bride but don’t want to forget about the groom?  For my friend Dianna’s shower (you can see all the shower photos here), I sat down with the groom, Adam, and asked him some simple questions about the bride!  We then showed the video at her bridal shower and had Dianna answer the questions before we showed his answers.  It turned out great.  It was so nice to incorporate the groom without him actually being there.  Plus, a few of his answers really surprised everyone and even made most of us tear up!  It was the sweetest 🙂

It really wasn’t too hard to do and you could really do it yourself!  Or better yet…hire me 🙂 haha

Here’s a few photos of the bride playing along with the DVD.

Lisa Hadley Studios

Lisa Hadley StudiosHere are the questions we asked the groom.  Wherever you see “the bride,” put in her name!  Feel free to change up the questions too!
1) When  you met, what was the first thing you noticed about the bride?
2) If you could be any superhero, what superhero would you be?
3) If your bride could only bring one item on your honeymoon, what would she bring?
4) If you were to cook one dinner for your bride, what dish would you prepare?
5) How many children does the bride want?
6) What are your pet names for each other?
7) What would the bride say is your most annoying habit?
8) What would you say is the bride’s most annoying habit?
9) If the bride could get rid of one item from your closet, what would it be?
10) What sound of impersonation do you do best?
11) How many times did you and the bride date before you had your first kiss?
12) What movie star do you think you are most like?
13) Who wears the pants in the relationship?
14) What game or sport does the bride think she’s better at than you?
15) Who is the better driver between the two of you?
16) Who is the better kisser between the two of you?
17) Who will your future children go to when they want something?
18) When was the first moment you realized that you loved each other?

And here’s the video 🙂

Gift Idea: The Bride’s Yearbook

My friend Rachel and I have known each other since 2004, when we were in the same calculus class in college.  We joined the same sorority and lived together in college.  Needless to say, there’s a lot of history there!  Rachel is getting married next month and for her bachelorette party, we all decided to put a book together that would help commemorate everything she means to us.

A friend of mine had initiated this project for another friend a couple years ago and I loved the idea.  I started by collecting photos from the bride’s parents, family, friends, fiance and anyone else who I thought she was close to.  I had each person who submitted photos write a note to Rachel, either saying how much she meant to them, talking about inside jokes, or even tips to remember as a newlywed.

I put the book together using Mixbook.com (one of my FAVORITE sites).  Their quality is great, price is even better, PLUS you can almost always find a coupon code online.

I built each page around aspects of her life… for Rachel, she is a teacher, who loves to cook and travel the world.  All the pages can be customized 100% and there are a ton of themed pages, stickers and fonts to pick from.  I also had time to incorporate some pictures from her bridal shower in the weeks right before we gave her the book!

Beyond that, I made a 2-page spread for each person who wrote a special letter for her and added photos to tell the rest of their story.  I saved the best for last and put her closest family members and fiance at the end.  I think she was so surprised to know that we had all been emailing each other without her ever knowing!

A great perk to Mixbook is that you can invite multiple collaborators so everyone can work on the book at the same time.  So for those who were a bit more tech savvy, I invited them as a contributor and they uploaded their own photos and created their pages.

I knew Rachel loved the book the moment we gave it to her.  She started crying right away!  It made all the planning and preparation totally worth it.  Being a teacher, of course she said “Oh my gosh, I get my own yearbook!”  Thus the Bridal Yearbook was born 🙂

Here was her reaction!Lisa Hadley Studios | Bridal Yearbook Lisa Hadley Studios | Bridal Yearbook

Lisa Hadley Studios | Bridal Yearbook

Lisa Hadley Studios | Bridal Yearbook Lisa Hadley Studios | Bridal Yearbook Lisa Hadley Studios | Bridal Yearbook Lisa Hadley Studios | Bridal Yearbook Lisa Hadley Studios | Bridal Yearbook Lisa Hadley Studios | Bridal Yearbook

And here’s the link to the book: Bridal Yearbook

This is such a special gift idea for any bride, or even just a friend for a birthday or special occasion.  It’s such a nice memento and really makes the bride feel loved by everyone she knows!

DIY First Dance Photo Frame

This was a little something extra  I decided to make for one of my couples, just because!  Erika and Justin’s first dance was so sweet 🙂  it brought tears to everyone’s eyes!  Their first dance song was “Forever” by Ben Harper.  Such a great song…..wedding or not.

This project is SO simple…. ya’ll should try it.  I started by opening up the photo in Photoshop elements.  Although I’m using Photoshop, you can probably get creative with Microsoft Word or Publisher and achieve the same end product.  You may not have as much flexibility but it will still work in the end.

Start with the photo

I then added a fill layer in gray and reduced the opacity to about 50%.  This makes it easier for you to read your text in the end.

Add gray fill layer

I found the lyrics to “Forever” just by searching around.  Takes no time at all.  I copied and pasted the text into a text element in Photoshop, added a few commas and periods so it read more like you would read standard text, instead of like lyrics.  I formatted it so it bled over the ends of the photo.  I also played with a few fonts and text weights.  I found the light version of Kozuka Gothic Pro to be the most legible over my photo and gray fill layer.

First Dance Frame

First Dance Frame

Testing fonts…

Last but not least, I wanted to add the date to the photo.  This couple’s colors were gray, red and yellow so red was a perfect fit.  Even if those weren’t their colors, a red heart always works   I printed their date on an 8.5×11 paper several times…. here’s where the trial and error comes in.  I had a heart punch but in order to make sure my date was centered, I had to do a few punches and find the best one.  Thus, why I printed the date so many times.  I kept punching until I got one I was happy with, then just glued it to the image!  Make sure you put your picture in the frame first and see what area gets cut off before you glue your heart to the photo.  If you had a shadow box or frame with a gap between the photo and the glass, you could use a pop-up glue dot and make it 3D!

IMG_9935

Punch punch punch…

I love the end product and I think it’s time for me to make one for myself!

The End!

30 Day Challenge

After watching the CreativeLive workshop last week with Sue Bryce and Hailey Bartholomew, I’m going to start my 30 day challenge today!  Basically it means filming something everyday for 30 days and putting it together to show a brief look at life in 30 days.  I haven’t quite figured out exactly when I’ll be able to film everything, especially because it’s so dark by the time I get off work everyday.  I suppose you’ll be seeing a lot of dinners made at home and our cat!  Hopefully I’ll be able to get out on the weekends to get some beautiful shots!

Here’s a sample of Hailey’s 30 day challenge.  I’m excited to be a bit more creative and film everyday life around me! 🙂