Mary Wesley & Bradley’s Engagement Session in Birmingham, AL

I was so excited to finally meet Mary Wesley & Bradley (and her sweet parents) a few weeks ago for their Engagement Session at her parent’s ranch in Birmingham, AL. We connected over our love for the University of Alabama. I can’t wait for their fall wedding; and, of course, as all true southerners do, they considered the football schedule. It’s not on a Saturday home game. Roll Tide! 🙂 Can’t wait to spend the day with these two on October 5th. It’s going to be so much fun. I love them already!

HDP-Cade-E-17_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-25_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-8_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-210_-WEB.jpgHDP-Cade-E-103_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-184_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-84_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-87_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-63_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-176_-WEB.jpgHDP-Cade-E-105_-WEB.jpgHDP-Cade-E-113_-WEB.jpgHDP-Cade-E-141_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-32_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-168_-WEB.jpgHDP-Cade-E-65_-WEB.jpgHDP-Cade-E-134_-WEB.jpgHDP-Cade-E-188_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-1_-WEB

HDP-Cade-E-166_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-157_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-193_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-75_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Cade-E-150_-WEB.jpgHDP-Cade-E-12_-WEB.jpg

What to Wear for Your Engagement Session

I always get asked the question, “What should I wear for my Engagement Session?” and my answer is always a long, solid-color fluid dress, heels and classic jewelry — estate or family pieces if you have them. Long dresses are very feminine. They catch the wind and add beautiful movement when you walk. That movement adds so much interest to your images. And, the fit of your dress should compliment your figure and show off your shape. If an outfit off the rack needs to be altered to fit you well, then do it to look your best. The reason we love so many celebrities’ outfits is that they are custom made to fit their bodies. My favorite silhouettes? It’s no secret that I absolutely LOVE a one-shoulder dress. It’s a hint of sexy, but classy at the same time. I also love simple slip dresses and wraps that accent your waist.

When choosing a dress, keep in mind that solid fabrics are best, because prints and patterns can be trendy and distracting unless they are tiny florals or classic patterns like stripes or checks. Plus, so many trendy outfits can date your images very quickly. Same goes for big, chunky accessories. Choose simple and delicate instead. I love heirloom, estate pieces that connect you to your family and give just enough sparkle. Ask your grandmother if you can borrow her pearl and diamond earrings, or your mother her diamond necklace. If your location makes it a little hard to walk in heels, you can take them off. Holding your shoes as you walk gives the images a more relaxed feel (even though you are dressed up) and also gives you something to do with your hands.

For a second, more casual outfit, well-fitting jeans with heels and a dressy blouse or a tailored jumpsuit, is what I recommend. Both are always a win.

So, to sum it up in a few words…solid, flowy, delicate feminine, and classic with a just hint of sexy and a touch of tailored. If every piece you choose to wear for your session can be summed up in those words then you’ve nailed it and your images will be beautiful and timeless.

Be looking for my next post, which will be a Q&A with Walton’s Jewelry on how to confidently shop for and choose estate jewelry and antique engagement rings.

HDP_6853_-WEB.jpg

HDP_6835_-WEB.jpg38501_0030_-WEB.jpg

HDP_6869.jpg

38501_0028_-WEB.jpg

HDP_6840_-WEB.jpg

38501_0015_-WEB.jpg

38501_0029BW.jpg

38501_0022.jpgHDP_6839_-WEB.jpg

HDP_6852_-WEB.jpg

38502_0006_-WEB.jpg

38504_0016_-WEB.jpg

HDP_6767.jpg

 

Dresses: Nordstrom | All jewelry: Estate pieces from Walton’s Jewelry, Franklin TN

 

Mary Lauren & Michael’s Memphis Engagement Session

I love to travel and explore cities in the name of work. I haven’t been to Memphis since college, and I would be shooting on three different occasions in Memphis for Mary Lauren and Michael’s portraits and wedding, I decided to head over the day before their Engagement Session to get reacquainted with this cool southern city and Home of the Blues.

Mary Lauren and Michael are both from Memphis, so it was important to them that I capture some of the iconic locations in their Engagement Session like the pyramid, M Bridge, Peabody Hotel and Beale Street Landing. We also strolled the beautiful gardens at Memphis Botanic.

The thing I love most about an Engagement Session is the opportunity for me to get to know the couple better before their wedding day. I can’t wait to go back for Mary Lauren’s bridals at her family’s home in June and their wedding day in July. For now, let’s go walking in Memphis with this fun couple…

HDP-Bobango-E-24_-WEB.jpgHDP-Bobango-E-2_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-11.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-114_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-55_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-141_-WEB.jpgHDP-Bobango-E-144_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-168-2_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-31-2.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-1_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-163_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-159-2_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-161_-WEB.jpg

Mary Lauren & Michael's Memphis Engagement Session

HDP-Bobango-E-125.jpg

 

HDP-Bobango-E-173_-WEB.jpg

Mary Lauren & Michael's Memphis Engagement Session

HDP-Bobango-E-423_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-183.jpg

 

HDP-Bobango-E-292_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-255-2_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-230_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-191.jpg

Mary Lauren & Michael's Memphis Engagement Session

HDP-Bobango-E-280_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-277_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-325_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-409_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-371_-WEB.jpgHDP-Bobango-E-354_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-378-2_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-387_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-374_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-367_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-429_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-425_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-431_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Bobango-E-433_-WEB.jpg

 

 

Rachel & Alex’s Downtown Nashville Engagement Session

I had fun getting to know these two on a perfect fall day. We started their Engagement Session at Centennial Park, because several months ago, Alex flew in town, surprised Rachel there and asked her to marry him on the steps of the Parthenon. From there we made our way to the Shelby pedestrian bridge downtown. Rachel won’t be living in Nashville after they get married, so she wanted to capture this beautiful city in their images since it’s an important piece of their story.

HDP-LaBianca-2_-WEB.jpg

Rachel & Alex's Downtown Nashville Engagement Session by Heather Durham PhotographyHDP-LaBianca-98_-WEB.jpg

HDP-LaBianca-103_-WEB.jpg

Rachel & Alex's Downtown Nashville Engagement Session by Heather Durham Photography

HDP-LaBianca-117_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-138_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-15-2_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-33_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-91_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-36_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-23-2_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-54_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-143_-WEB.jpg

HDP-LaBianca-183_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-165_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-180_-WEB.jpg

Rachel & Alex's Downtown Nashville Engagement Session by Heather Durham Photography

HDP-LaBianca-193_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-214_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-223-2_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-233-2_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-236_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-245_-WEB.jpgRachel & Alex's Downtown Nashville Engagement Session by Heather Durham PhotographyHDP-LaBianca-267-2_-WEB.jpgHDP-LaBianca-286_-WEB.jpg

Chris & Emily’s Engagement Session

I enjoyed meeting Chris and Emily at their Birmingham Botanical Gardens and Railroad Park Engagement Session. Here’s some of my favorite images from our afternoon together. Be sure to check out their Historic Rucker Place wedding here.

HDP-Schmidt-E-11

HDP-Schmidt-E-24HDP-Schmidt-E-116.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-114.jpgHDP-Schmidt-E-13.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-3.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-54

HDP-Schmidt-E-80.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-75.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-83.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-98.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-21.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-27

HDP-Schmidt-E-31.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-28.jpgHDP-Schmidt-E-39.jpgHDP-Schmidt-E-42.jpgHDP-Schmidt-E-58

HDP-Schmidt-E-49.jpgHDP-Schmidt-E-53.jpgHDP-Schmidt-E-72.jpg

 

HDP-Schmidt-E-129.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-152.jpgHDP-Schmidt-E-139.jpg

HDP-Schmidt-E-154.jpg

 

Megan & Andrew’s Engagement Session at Smyer Lake

I can’t wait for Megan & Andrew’s Birmingham, AL wedding this weekend with planner, Marée Ami. I’ve been hearing about all of the lovely details for this fun couple, and I can’t wait to see it all come together! But first, I’m excited to share their Engagement Session at Andrew’s family’s beautiful Smyer Lake home.

HDP-Brown-10_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-13_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-9_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-35_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-19_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-58_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-24_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-94_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-41_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-46_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-72_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-47_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-65_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-76_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-78_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-32_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-95-2_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-51_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-24_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-190_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-138_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-137_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-117_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-123-2_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-197_-WEBHDP-Brown-142_-WEB.jpgHDP-Brown-143_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-119_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-151_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-202_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-176_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-185_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-183_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-163-2_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-189-2_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-193_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-215_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-216_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-223_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-226_-WEB.jpg

HDP-Brown-114_-WEB.jpg

Hamilton & Jake’s Engagement Session in Downtown Franklin, TN

I had so much fun with Hamilton & Jake during their Engagement Session in downtown Franklin! I wasn’t available to shoot their upcoming wedding in Birmingham, but excited with them for their nuptials and move to Nashville. Glad we’ll have some more Birmingham natives in this town! They are such a sweet couple and it was fun roaming around on a beautiful fall afternoon with them. Jake is one lucky guy!

hdp-shook-104_-webHDP-Shook-308_-WEB.jpgHDP-Shook-150_-WEB.jpgHDP-Shook-151_-WEB.jpgHDP-Shook-135_-WEB.jpgHDP-Shook-116_-WEB.jpghdp-shook-120_-webHDP-Shook-144_-WEB.jpgHDP-Shook-277_-WEB.jpgHDP-Shook-262_-WEB.jpghdp-shook-199_-webHDP-Shook-242_-WEB.jpgHDP-Shook-245_-WEB.jpghdp-shook-185_-webhdp-shook-163_-webhdp-shook-282_-webHDP-Shook-298_-WEB.jpg

Melissa & Paulk’s Wedding Day on the Plains of Auburn

I met Melissa and Paulk for the first time over coffee at Octane in Birmingham and immediately liked them. I loved that they both came to meet with me so that Paulk could also be a part of the decision making, and they were so real, warm and kind. I was thrilled when Melissa called me a few days later to let me know that I would be the one to tell their wedding day story, which would take place at Auburn United Methodist Church and Moores Mill Club, with planning by Invision Events. But first, I would spend an afternoon together with them for their Engagement Session and then later, a Bridal Session with Melissa. Three opportunities to get to be with this sweet couple! What a privilege for me!

In addition to forming a friendship, I’d like to tell you another beautiful result of my getting to know Melissa. She is a nurse at Children’s of Alabama and is passionate about her job helping children. Just a few weeks ago, our dear family friends’ 6th grade daughter underwent open heart surgery. The night before her surgery, I texted Melissa to see if by some crazy chance she would be working the next morning. She immediately texted back that she was. God is faithful as always, and Melissa was there that morning, provided support to our friends and took great care of their sweet girl, even making sure she had some of her favorite treats. I love seeing the beautiful webs God weaves between people to carry out His purpose for His glory. I hope Melissa and I will always stay in touch. She’s a gem! Paulk knows it too!

Here’s some of my favorite images from there wedding day. Enjoy…

 

001-hdp-starr-w-1_-web002-hdp-starr-w-11_-web003-hdp-starr-w-13_-web005-hdp-starr-w-37_-web004-hdp-starr-w-26_-web006-hdp-starr-w-31_-web010-hdp-starr-w-126_-web011-hdp-starr-w-133-2_-web012-hdp-starr-w-140-2_-web014-hdp-starr-w-168_-web016-hdp-starr-w-174_-web018-hdp-starr-w-180_-web015-hdp-starr-w-200_-web017-hdp-starr-w-224_-web019-hdp-starr-w-416_-web065-hdp-starr-w-666_-web074-hdp-starr-w-663_-web071-hdp-starr-w-733_-web025-hdp-starr-w-301_-web026-hdp-starr-w-302_-web022-hdp-starr-w-250_-web021-hdp-starr-w-247_-web023-hdp-starr-w-274_-web024-hdp-starr-w-297_-web032-hdp-starr-w-362_-web028-hdp-starr-w-328_-web030-hdp-starr-w-347_-web029-hdp-starr-w-333_-web033-hdp-starr-w-370_-web066-hdp-starr-w-685_-web069-hdp-starr-w-740_-web034-hdp-starr-w-184_-web035-hdp-starr-w-188_-web072-hdp-starr-w-774_-web068-hdp-starr-w-764_-web039-hdp-starr-w-386_-web036-hdp-starr-w-379_-web

037-hdp-starr-w-380_-web040-hdp-starr-w-391_-web059-hdp-starr-w-433_-web044-hdp-starr-w-573_-web048-hdp-starr-w-599_-web047-hdp-starr-w-596_-web049-hdp-starr-w-603_-web052-hdp-starr-w-621_-web

054-hdp-starr-w-630_-web056-hdp-starr-w-637_-web057-HDP-Starr-W-643-2_-WEB.jpg

058-hdp-starr-w-791_-web064-hdp-starr-w-781_-web067-hdp-starr-w-800_-web070-hdp-starr-w-656_-web076-hdp-starr-w-844_-web077-hdp-starr-w-842_-web078-hdp-starr-w-847_-web085-hdp-starr-w-878_-web080-hdp-starr-w-888_-web081-HDP-Starr-W-440_-WEB.jpg084-hdp-starr-w-869_-web087-hdp-starr-w-51_-web090-hdp-starr-w-48_-web088-hdp-starr-w-68_-web089-hdp-starr-w-60_-web096-hdp-starr-w-67_-web095-hdp-starr-w-64_-web097-hdp-starr-w-893_-web100-hdp-starr-w-920_-web101-hdp-starr-w-921_-web103-hdp-starr-w-926-2_-web104-hdp-starr-w-929_-webhdp-starr-w-932_-web106-hdp-starr-w-946_-webhdp-starr-w-965109-hdp-starr-w-912_-web110-hdp-starr-w-976_-web124-hdp-starr-w-1023_-web129-hdp-starr-w-1029_-web129-hdp-starr-w-1029_-web130-hdp-starr-w-1030_-web131-hdp-starr-w-1032_-web132-hdp-starr-w-1036_-web133-hdp-starr-w-1043_-web134-hdp-starr-w-1044-2_-web135-hdp-starr-w-1049_-web138-hdp-starr-w-1057-2_-web

Photography: Heather Durham | Planner: Invision Events | Floral Design: Stanley Sistrunk, The Flower Store | Wedding Gown: Kelly Faetanini from Carriage House Weddings | Bridesmaids Dresses: Jenny Woo from BHLDN | Suits: Joseph A Bank | Band: Bobby Moore & the Rhythm Aces | Classic Car: Bride’s family private collection