Rachel & Ethan

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rachel & Ethan | High Point University | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

The A-Team

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | The Walkups | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

I had a mini-session with The A-Team. Yep, the REAL A-Team *wink* The little cuties weren't quite sure about mommy when she put on the Lizard outfit. Made for some adorably honest portraits, though!

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | The Walkups | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | The Walkups | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | The Walkups | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | The Walkups | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | The Walkups | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | The Walkups | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

50 Brides Reveal What Their Photographers Could Have Done Better

50 Brides Reveal What Their Photographers Could Have Done Better

As a professional wedding photographer, you are trusted with the huge responsibility of documenting one of the most important days of two people’s lives. Not only are you expected to fully capture all the big moments, small moments and everything in between, you are expected to create images that are beautiful and authentic and will bring tears to each viewer’s eyes. All brides hire you believing that you will meet all of these expectations, but unfortunately that is not always the case. We asked real brides whose weddings took place in 2014 what they thought their wedding photographers could have done better. These are direct quotes from anonymous brides who took this opportunity to express their true feelings. The answers may surprise you.

1. My photographer fled the area after giving us the raw photos digitally but before editing our photos and giving us our wedding photo book as required in the contract.  We did our own editing in Windows Live and printed them in BrideBox and they came out wonderfully!  What a relief!

2. Our photographer was very good but the one thing I regret is that he used a filter on almost every photo so many of the photos were not sharp and vibrant in color, which is what I prefer.

3. He could have gotten better low light photos during the reception. More fun shots with bridal party. Most of ours were posed and serious.

4. Could have communicated with me more prior to and after the wedding. We’ve been married for almost 2 months now and he has failed to respond to any of our correspondences regarding when we will get our pictures, or anything else at all. I almost feel like we will never hear from him and that he has stolen our money. Not even sure what to do.

5. Snapped more candid photos.

6. Listen to me better. I asked for specific shots that I wanted and he didn’t want to do the the day of the wedding. I got married at the Palace of Fine Arts, and I wanted pictures inside the dome and he did not want to shoot there. He could have at least said, “Okay let’s do a couple and them move here.” I also had to push for shots by some doors that he did not want to shoot and those ended up being the best pictures. Also he didn’t have many ideas, I had to tell him what to do next.

7. My photographer should have spent more time with me before the wedding to go over the details for the day.  They should have used a checklist for the specific pictures I wanted them to take.

8. I could name 20, but I wish he would have insisted on taking table shots so I at least had a good record of everyone at my wedding.

9. I wish they had gone to each table and taken pictures during dinner. They took a lot of pictures of the dance floor action, but not everyone was dancing so there are some guests I don’t have any photos of from the reception! 

10. COMMUNICATE!!!!

11. My photographer should have cleaned up my pictures a little better than how they were presented. I had some pictures that were actually blurry and partially blacked out… No Bueno!!! 

12. If there is a set plan/list of photos to be taken, be organized and able to stick to that plan. Stick to original requests as much as possible.

13. Be honest about how long it would actually take to get us our pictures and albums after the wedding.  Stop saying “I’m almost done” and just say “My volume is so high it will take me over a year to complete your order.”

14. Communicate better. Took more pics of details especially the DIY projects I worked my ass off for. Took more candids of guests.

15. More direction.

16. Our photographer convinced us to get the more expensive package which included a few extra hours of his time and a wedding album so we thought the album would be super nice. When we got it we were sooo disappointed… cheap materials and the picture quality wasn’t great.

17. There were plenty of things my photographer could have done better.  For one, the selection of pictures.  I had a ton of pictures of me and my bridesmaids, which I of course love.  However, I only had a handful of pictures of me and my husband.  I was so disappointed in the lack of pictures of the two of us.  I wrote out a list of specific shots I wanted taken, and he clearly did not even look at the list.  There was one family picture of my mother’s side (and only because my mom rallied up everyone) but no family or table shots of any other family.  I could go on… thank God for my videographer.

18. Made the timing of her exit more clear.

19. Had a 2nd photographer with him to catch more moments.

20. Communicated better regarding the pics we wanted… & giving it more of a “party” feel with more of the fun shots & better attention to detail.

21. He could have offered more ideas for the group photos. It seemed like he just wanted to get the job done and wasn’t thinking that creatively.

22. Given our photos back within the contract deadline. I understand that sometimes things get really busy, but be proactive in letting us know when we may expect it so that we’re not having to chase them down.

23. I wish we would have identified a place during the ceremony for the bridal party to make a brief pause for a photo on the way down the aisle.

24. Provided multiple family shots (and not just what he thought was the “best of”). I wish we could have gotten a shot of my brother and I just regularly posing, but he only gave us one of us smiling/laughing, which was great…just I wanted more than the one. Also, one other thing…wish he had gotten more couples shots that were artistic, but we were on a time constraint.

25. I wish our photographer would have taken more initiative and be creative.  Rather than us telling him which pictures to take and how I wish he would have as well.  Yes he did ask for a list of pictures that we wanted him to take, but with everything going on, the list was misplaced.  Afte looking at my digitals there were many picture opportunities that did not get taken advantage of.  Our pictures were also only edited when we asked for them to be edited.

26. Spend more time taking photos of the couple prior to the ceremony. (Different poses outside of the normal area)

27. Been more creative with location of the first look and bridal.

28. More party shots.

29. She didn’t take my opinion into consideration when designing my wedding album. I trusted her to be an expert since she does wedding albums all the time, but the final product was very underwhelming. Very cookie cutter and seems like she uses the same boring template for every book.

30. I LOVED my photographer. But I wish she had had more romantic and intimate pose ideas when she was photographing us alone as a couple. I found the ones we took a little stiff and in the rush of the moment couldn’t think of anything better myself.

31. Taken more photos with me with my guests at the reception.

32. Not rush us and have given us better direction for poses.

33. I wish my photographer had captured more photos of my friends and family, as well as photos of us interacting with them. At the end of the day, I only had one photo with my mother and her face is 3/4 hidden.

34. Ensure that I received a CD of my photos sooner as well as leaving them online for more than a month.

35. Lighting.

36. She should have been more open and nice. She was very closed off and not open to any suggestions.

37. Adjusted the lighting/brightness/contrast (I have no idea of the correct technical term!) of the photos from the reception which was in a hotel ballroom. Something about the lighting in those photos is very unexciting, which is in stark contrast  to all the others!

38. Not cancel on me the day before the wedding!!!

39. I have pictures but it would have great to have a real photographer. A lot of things got missed 

40. Taken more pictures of us at the reception before the dance.  He got pictures of us walking into the reception hall and then the next pictures are of us having our first dance… we ate and went around to see people for about 1.5 hours before we danced!  So there are not any pictures of us, our head table, us talking to guests, etc.  I wish he could have got more of us interacting with our guests, but instead he sat down and ate his dinner with the rest of everyone and didn’t pick up his camera again until we had our first dance.

41. Take all my important family pictures.

42. Listened to what I wanted. While I have nice photos to look back on, they did not look at or consider the shot list that they asked me to send them. There were certain photos I had really wanted and missed out on.

43. Could have taken more candids. I didn’t really get the shots like you see on Pinterest like in a field. I loved her but it would have been nice to have more direction from her.

44. Taken more whimsical pictures of us as a couple.

45. The photos came out fine, but during the whole consultation she was flirting with my husband!

46. Not only did it take forever to get my photos and wedding album, but the album itself is very cheap quality and looks like it was carelessly put together. The photos don’t really tell the story of my wedding day.

47. He seemed like he was really unprepared for the day. Fumbling around with camera settings and whatnot during important times like when we were walking down the aisle after saying “I do” and when my maid of honor was giving her toast.

48. Completely ignored my phone calls, emails, texts – everything! It’s been 3 months and I still haven’t heard from her even though in her contract she said 4-6 weeks is typical turnaround.

49. I thought my photographer would be a little more prepared. She didn’t really know where to be at the right time and she didn’t get any good shots of important things like the first kiss and my husband’s face as I walked down the aisle.

50. To be fair, he took a pretty healthy mix of photos and got pictures of all of my guests, but I really thought he would know better and take more photos of my bridal party and my family members. I only have one picture of me and my sister (who was also my maid of honor!) outside of the posed photos.

As we read through these brides’ responses, we realized a few common themes that kept recurring. First, lack of communication seems to be a huge problem between brides and their photographers. In any business relationship, clear communication is the most important aspect in order to ensure all parties are on the same page. There is nothing worse than going into a business relationship thinking you will receive one thing and then receiving a totally different product. Maintaining a clear path of communication is essential in order to meet expectations for both the wedding photographer and the bride. This means you need to take the initiative to make sure your bride understands what you are going to provide for her, before, during and especially after the wedding. Spend the time to communicate with her what it is exactly you will do on the day of and during the days following the wedding so that she feels comfortable trusting you with the important role of documenting her wedding day. Above all, do not ignore any correspondence you receive from her after the wedding, even if you are worried that she’ll be upset that your schedule is running a bit later than expected. She will only be more upset if you ignore her. Be open and honest with your clients so that you can manage and align expectations smoothly.

A second recurring issue with wedding photographers is that brides want their photographers to direct them to pose for photos and to have a shot list prepared so that nothing is missed. Although some brides felt that their photographers weren’t creative enough with the poses, it is evident that many brides prefer for their photographers to not only be open to pose suggestions, but to have a prepared list of poses that include portrait shots as well as whimsical, fun poses.

Another problem brides have with their photographers is that they were promised a beautiful wedding album, but the product they received was disappointing and of poor quality. When brides receive a wedding album with their expensive photography packages, they expect a superior, professional product. If you are going to include a wedding album as part of your packages, please make sure that you are only offering a product that will thrill your customers.

Finally, when documenting an event as important as someone’s wedding, be sure to take the time to find out who are the VIPs on the guest list. Your bride and groom will be extremely busy on the actual day and won’t be able to come over and tell you to take more photos of their family or best friends, so they’ll expect you to be one step ahead of them and already be snapping shots of those important people. Although it’s important to get a good mix of shots that include everyone and everything, more photos of those who are most important to your clients will only make them happier in the end.

To Photoshop or Not to Photoshop

There's been a big issue this year pertaining to Photoshopping and over-editing photographs, what editing does to body image, how ethical Photoshopped advertising actually is and the general misrepresentation Photoshop can cause. I'd like to discuss my views on Photoshop, why I use it and how far I take my editing. There are many facets to my reasoning, and I'll do my best to help you understand where I'm coming from.

To begin, I'd like to start with the basis of a portrait. The purpose of a portrait is to capture the essence of your subject in their truest form. Ideally, you want a natural body position, a pure smile and a walls-down-here-is-my-soul-at-its-deepest expression in their eyes. There are other elements involved in a portrait, but the focus is right on those two windows (the eyes) looking right at you and communicating personality. If there are distracting blemishes on your face, or dark circles that detract from that focus, I'll edit them. We all get blemishes. We all have bad nights of sleep. We're just human. That's how our bodies work. 

There is an integrity to the portraits I take of you. You want to look your best and I want you to look your best. So, I'll choose the right poses, the right light and do the minor touch ups as needed. I draw the line when it comes to changing what you actually look like. I don't believe in changing your eye color, making you skinnier or more plump; I don't believe in lengthening your neck, straightening your teeth or taking out your dimples. That's when the portrait transforms into a picture and not a true representation of you.

More controversially is the fashion side of this issue.  

When you look at a fashion ad, there is a part of that advertisement that appeals to you. Whether you think the clothes look cool, you can picture how awesome you'd look wearing those accessories or you are enticed by how appealing the model is in those clothes/accessories/makeup/lifestyle, your interest is peaked because of your personal positive appeal. That, your reaction, is the point of advertising. 

Brands gear their marketing towards the specific clientel they want to reach. If you don't find their advertising appealing, they've missed their mark. The most effective way to sell a product is through creating a glamorous appeal.

Here's the secret behind that glamorous appeal : models are normal people. Yes, they may be taller than the average human, but they are people, just like you and me. Makeup, styling, lighting and, yes, editing all factor in to creating the appeal you see in advertisements. There are many models and celebrities who have spoken out about being a blank canvas for a shoot. Once they have seen the final product, they don't recognize themselves and some have even wondered why they were chosen if the final product was beyond what they actually look like. That's the art to creating these photographs. 

Do some brands take this too far? Yes. Most definitely, yes. There are some brands who promote unhealthily skinny models and then edit them to be even skinnier. That's where they cross the line. Before they cross that line though, they are simply doing their job and creating an appeal that will lead to the purchasing of products. Plain and simple.

And that's just my two cents.

Ashton & Gunner

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Ashton & Gunner | Winston Salem, NC | -Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Poise : Dawn

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Dawn | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com}

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com}

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com}

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com}

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com}

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com}

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com}

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com}

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com}

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com}

4 Weddings and 3 Divorces: An Expert's Guide to Love Gone Wrong

I read this article recently. As a newlywed and a someone in the wedding industry, I found this advice to be refreshing, intriguing and quite applicable. 

To view the original article from Elle, click here.

4 Weddings and 3 Divorces: An Expert's Guide to Love Gone Wrong

Margo Howard has advice in her veins. She’s the daughter of Ann Landers (otherwise known as Eppie Lederer), the niece of Dear Abby, and an advice columnist in her own right: She was behind Slate’s Dear Prudence column for eight years, and she had her own syndicated column called Dear Margo until 2013. Though she’s dished out her share of romantic advice, she’s not exactly the best at taking it. She’s on husband number four, and in her kicky new memoir Eat, Drink & Remarry, Howard is transparent about her many romantic missteps.

But Eat, Drink & Remarry: Confessions of a Serial Wife isn’t strictly self-help. It’s more of a cautionary tale about avoiding the wrong men. Here’s the best advice that Howard never took, but wished she did. And the one piece of advice she did take, and was glad for it.

Lesson 1: Don’t Ignore the Greek Chorus

When Howard was just a senior in college, she met her first husband. In hindsight, she describes him as "an unattractive Prince Charles." That should tell you about how well their marriage turned out. She agreed to marry him on their fourth date. "Reader, I said yes," she admits. "Do not ask me why because I could not tell you." She proceeded to ignore a lot of red flags, including a drinking problem and the fact that he was a cold fish. Her parents begged her not to marry him, but she was 21, and no one was going to tell her what to do. She writes 40 years down the road:

“After many years of life experiences granting me distance from Coleman, not to mention many years of my reader mail, I now understand that a Greek chorus saying, 'Don’t do this' should not be disregarded. If I knew then what I know now, as they say, the question I would have asked myself is, 'Why would your friends and family go out on a limb to tell you this was a bum choice, taking the risk of becoming persona non grata?'"

Good question! And one you should ask yourself.

Lesson 2: Know Thyself—and Don’t Settle.

Howard chose her second husband as a reaction to her first. Where her first husband was work-obsessed and stiff, her second husband was easygoing and attentive. "I didn’t have to question his honesty, and he was lovingly solicitous of me…we didn’t argue and the relationship was comfortable," she writes. That comfort made her gloss over the fact that they didn’t have very much in common. She also just assumed that he would be a good step-parent to the three children she had with her first husband. Both of those assumptions were incorrect: "Obviously I did not know myself very well at the time or acknowledge my need for excitement," Howard writes. "Ordinary didn’t do it for me. I would advise anyone not to settle—yet that is what I did."

Lesson 3: Don’t Borrow Other People’s Husbands

After a decade-plus marriage to a famous actor—Ken Howard—their relationship dissolved. Then Howard dated a married guy, who she refers to as a "borrowed husband." "Dallying with a married man seldom ends well (For you, that is. He is usually fine.)," she writes. "Time flies when you’re sabotaging yourself."

Lesson 4: Always Give Second Chances

When she was in her late 50s, Howard was set up on a blind date with a surgeon, who she didn't think was her type. She described him, on first meeting, as "balding and avuncular." But she liked talking to him, and so agreed to a second date. It might be a cliché, but Howard found that "being able to get beyond the surface…made it possible for me to look for things that mattered. This is what prompted me, both in my advice column and when counseling friends, to always advise giving a new person a second look, as it is not possible to get a read on someone after just one encounter."

Reader, she married him. And this is her current—and she hopes, last—husband.

Bobie & Bo

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Bobie & Bo | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie and Bo | Winston Salem Photography | Photography by Alyson Lawton

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie and Bo | Winston Salem Photography | Photography by Alyson Lawton

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

Family Portrait Photography | Bobie & Bo | Winston Salem, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | alysonlawton.com

52 Colorized Historical Photos That Give Us A New Look At the Past

There is always enough time to re-visit and re-appreciate history. These photographs preserve culture, time and fading eras. Not only are they iconic but, nerd note, the colorization is exquisite!

Read the original article by Jake Heppner from Distractify here.


52 Colorized Historical Photos That Give Us A New Look At the Past

Jake Heppner 08-Jul

Up until the 1970s, color photography was rare. Thus, our vision of history is so often in black and white only. Rare colorized historical photos are our only chance at seeing what the world really looked like...and, boy, was it spectacular

Claude Monet in 1923

Brigadier General and actor Jimmy Stewart

Stewart flew 20 combat missions over Nazi-occupied Europe, and even flew one mission during Vietnam.

Stewart flew 20 combat missions over Nazi-occupied Europe, and even flew one mission during Vietnam.

Pablo Picasso

Lou Gehrig, July 4, 1939

Photo taken right after his famous retirement speech. He would pass away just two years later from ALS.

Photo taken right after his famous retirement speech. He would pass away just two years later from ALS.

Times Square 1947

Lee Harvey Oswald, 1963

Oswald being transported to questioning before his murder trial for the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Oswald being transported to questioning before his murder trial for the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Hellen Keller meeting comedian Charlie Chaplin in 1918

Girls delivering ice 1918

Burger Flipper 1938

Winston Churchill 1941

Albert Einstein in 1921

Madison Square Park New York City around 1900

Marilyn Monroe

Samurai Training 1860

American Poet Walt Whitman, 1868

Hindenburg Blimp crash

British Soldiers Returning from the front in 1939

Joan Crawford on the set of Letty Lynton, 1932

Country store in July 1939. Gordonton, North Carolina

Mark Twain in 1900

Albert Einstein on a Long Island beach in 1939

Audrey Hepburn

Union Soldiers taking a break 1863

Charles Darwin

World War 2 soldiers on Easter

Clint Eastwood, 1962

W.H. Murphy testing the bulletproof vest in 1923

0ed6ef485ababae352b2444f700dcc72_650x.jpeg

Charlie Chaplin at 27 years old in 1916

Elizabeth Taylor in 1956

Big Jay McNeely, Olympic Auditorium, 1953


Louis Armstrong practicing backstage in 1946

Red Hawk of the Oglala Sioux Tribe on horseback, 1905

Babe Ruth’s 1920 MLB debut

A Washington, D.C. filling station in 1924

Boys buying flowers in 1908

An Oklahoman farmer during the great dust bowl in 1939

Louis Armstrong plays to his wife, Lucille, in Cairo, Egypt 1961

Brooklyn Bridge in 1904



Two Boxers after a fight

1920s Australian mugshots from the New South Wales Police Dept


Sophia Loren and Jayne Mansfield

Brothers Robert Kennedy, Edward "Ted" Kennedy, and John F. Kennedy outside the Oval Office.

Clint Eastwood working on his 1958 Jag XK 120 in 1960

Cornell Rowing Team 1907

View from the Capitol in Nashville, 1864


Baltimore Slums, 1938

Nazi Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels scowls at a Jewish photographer, 1933

Henry Ford, 1919

An RAF pilot getting a haircut while reading a book between missions.

a5ea2a0e0852531c61bd6bfd28b84e18_650x.jpeg

Unemployed Lumber Worker and His Wife 1939

Alfred Hitchcock

A car crash in Washington D.C. around 1921

People standing in line Louisville, Kentucky 1939

President Lincoln with Major General McClernand and Allan Pinkerton at Antietam in 1862

1754

1754

Our Story : Matt & Jessica

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Matt and Jessica met in the Game room on Winston-Salem State University’s campus in September of my freshman year in 2005.

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

When we first met, I was with a High School friend and he was with his friends. It was not a love at first sight connection, but lets just say he was very persistent. We have been together ever since, through all of the ups and downs.
— Jessica
{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

I knew Jessica was The One because she showed me the true meaning of love even through all of my hang-ups over the first couple of years.
— Matt
{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

I knew he was the one because of how he had grown and continues to grow into the Man of God I knew he could be.
— Jessica
{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

I didn’t see the proposal coming. I thought I was going to deploy to Afghanistan a single woman. I was actually at my boiling point because I felt our relationship was becoming stagnant and we needed to either move to the next level or break-up. We discussed the topic numerous times but he wouldn’t budge. Then the night before I get on the plane, he came to Savannah and surprised me at the door of our hotel room. I was speechless. After a few light jabs, I accepted. He loves getting my pressure up, but I love him.
— Jessica
{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

On our wedding day, I look forward to how beautiful she is going to look coming down the aisle.
— Matt
{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

I look forward to dancing with my husband for the first time as Mr. and Mrs. Gattison.
— Jessica
{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Congratulations, Matt and Jessica!

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Matt & Jessica | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Rocco

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

We have new addition to our family! I took the opportunity to photograph the cutie the other day and wanted to share. 

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Rocco | Photography by Alyson Lawton | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Poise : Audra

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Audra | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton | www.alysonlawton.com }

To Our Sweet Brides and Grooms, Thank you.

Deep breath. {inhale}

Hold steady. {Slowly exhale}

Patience.

Waiting with a keen eye to anticipate the brief intimate moment a person makes themselves truly vulnerable, open, expressing their bare feelings, is key. 

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Samantha and Aaron | Wake Forest University | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Samantha and Aaron | Wake Forest University | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

It could be the honest glance between a Bride a Groom on their wedding day, the split second a High School Senior forgets they are trying to look perfect and their eyes open with a floodgate of raw personality, the brief sigh a model takes between poses. A fraction of a second. 

Over the years, we've been privileged to witness genuine emotion that has brought us many a time to tears.

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Alexandra | Model 101 | Winston Salem | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Alexandra | Model 101 | Winston Salem | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

That fraction, that split second makes a beautiful photograph a portrait. An image that captures YOU, our sweet Brides and Grooms.

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Nikki & Thomas | Linwood, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Nikki & Thomas | Linwood, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

We get to capture those fleeting, beautiful moments of life. A 1/100 of a second, a miniscule fraction of time in an extraordinary day - the genesis of a Family. Even in the whirl of a 12 hour wedding day, a beautiful moment composed in the frame of our cameras brings an inner peace and profound stillness - a moment forever preserved in history.

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Samantha and Aaron | Wake Forest University | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Samantha and Aaron | Wake Forest University | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

These are the moments which preserve your memories and rekindle emotions when you look back on your wedding day.

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Boone, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Boone, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

It is an honor and a delight to be the people to capture these moments. 

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Adam and Kelly | J.H. Adams Inn | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Adam and Kelly | J.H. Adams Inn | High Point, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Thank you, to all of our Brides and Grooms who chose Photography by Alyson Lawton as their wedding photographer. We have greatly enjoyed getting to know each of you, being swept up in the romance of your days and forming lasting friendships. 

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Christa and Will |Greensboro College | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Christa and Will |Greensboro College | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

It has been our delight.

With love and best wishes,

PbAL

Poise : Marrah

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Marrah | Greensboro, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Itsyouryouth

{ North Carolina Fashion Photographer | Itsyouryouth Stylist | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Fashion Photographer | Itsyouryouth Stylist | High Point NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Fashion Photographer | Itsyouryouth Stylist | High Point NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Fashion Photographer | Itsyouryouth Stylist | High Point NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Fashion Photographer | Itsyouryouth Stylist | High Point NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Fashion Photographer | Itsyouryouth Stylist | High Point NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Fashion Photographer | Itsyouryouth Stylist | High Point NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

32 Secrets From Married People About Wedding Planning (Buzzfeed Guest Article)

This article crossed my screen not too long ago and I had to share. Being a wedding photographer and a newlywed, I couldn't agree more with some of these!! To read the original article on Buzzfeed, click the following link : 32 Secrets.

If there’s something you’d WISH you’d known before planning, what would it be?

1. “People want to help; let them!”

2. “Someone told me to set up a separate email account for wedding planning. I’m glad I did, because the amount of junk mail I get there is ridiculous.”

3. “You’re not gonna make everyone happy, so focus on what’s important to you.”

4. “It’s OK if you have never thought about your wedding day until they popped the question.”

5. “I wish we’d skipped the wedding and put money down on a house or gone on a better honeymoon.”

6. “You will not eat your wedding food that you may have spent hours planning and/or tasting.”

7. “Best advice I got while wedding planning: This might be YOUR wedding, but think of it as the first party you and your spouse HOST together. Make sure your guests are taken care of, don’t skip the cocktail hour to hang out with your wedding party. Mingle, make everyone feel welcome, and just ENJOY it.”

8. “There’s a Jewish tradition where the couple goes off for private time after the wedding ceremony and before the reception. Historically, I think that was supposed to be the time when couples were supposed to consummate, but now most couples use that as a time to eat. We got married at a B&B, and we had them set up dinner for us in our room as our guests went to the cocktail hour and started the reception. We took like 30 minutes to just eat and have some quiet time before heading into the madness of saying hello to everyone, and it made it so much easier to enjoy the time socializing. I’d recommend it to every couple.”

9. “Things you SHOULD worry about — ample clean bathrooms, having enough food, having a backup plan in case of weather problems, parking/travel accessibility (esp. for older family members), and please, please just get the open bar! That was my dad’s only input on my wedding and he was CORRECT.”

Is there something you spent WAY too much money/time on that you wish you hadn’t? OR something that was WORTH the $$/time?

10. “Don’t go insane on the flowers. They’re done the next day.”

11. “Invest in a great photographer. They will help document the memories that last. And spend time on figuring out your photo style, don’t be afraid to tell them what you want!”

12. “We picked a venue that also did catering and decorations, which saved a lot of time and stress that would have gone into coordinating different parties.”

13. “We had a DJ who played dance tracks, but also had a surprise performance by a Beatles cover band (in the Beatles’ costumes and everything). It was totally worth it — everyone thought we were the typical wedding with a DJ, and then halfway through the reception we surprised everyone with the Beatles! Everyone danced like crazy, and it made our wedding memorable.”

14. “Weddings are totally individualized and personal, but for me a big wedding (like 100 people) was worth it because it made my family SO freaking happy. There was a moment when we were doing the Horah, where I just looked at my husband and around at all these people who we love so much and I could feel the love coming from them and it was probably one of the most powerful things I’ve ever felt in my life and I totally didn’t expect that.”

15. “Hiring a limo to go from the ceremony to the reception was a splurge for us that was worth the money. It was a way to enjoy a moment together without the ‘noise’ and feel like we were special.”

16. “Something that was worth the money was my dress. It was over the initial budget but I felt so beautiful in it and couldn’t have imagined wearing anything else.”

17. “Nobody looks at the label on your wedding dress. If you look through wedding magazines and see a dress you like, you can clip it out, go buy fabric, and pay a seamstress to copy that design for you. Way cheaper than Vera Wang.”

18. “Get married in a developing country: That’s my advice. We got married in Argentina in 2004 (my wife is from there, so it wasn’t really a destination wedding). The peso was extremely weak against the dollar. In other words, everything was super cheap. Seriously, the wedding, all in, cost only $… you know what, I better not say it because it’ll just piss people off. Anyhow, it wasn’t even close to crazy.”

If you could give one piece of advice to brides/grooms to be, what would that be?

19. “Advice: Eat beforehand. Have a big breakfast/lunch since odds are people will interrupt you as you eat. Alternatively, have someone run interference for you (like someone from the wedding party) to keep people from bothering you too much as you eat. They can also save you from getting trapped in an awkward conversation with that weird cousin of yours.”

20. “Chill the F out. No one likes a bridezilla. Everything will end up perfect in its own way.”

21. “Someone told me that the day will wash over you like a flood, and it does. They said when I caught myself in a moment, to take a breath, and think of it as my own personal snapshot. Some 11 years later, I don’t remember the color of the chairs I agonized over or care that the candles burned holes in all of the rental tablecloths. I remember my moments, the times when everything felt beyond perfect. Invest well in the real photos too. After the wedding, all that lasts is your love, your memories, and the photos.”

22. “Plan specific times during the wedding day to be alone together. A few minutes after pictures, a few minutes after the ceremony, and a few minutes in the middle of the night to just step back and watch it all go down, together.”

23. “There’s going to be something that goes wrong. Just know that. So when it goes wrong, say, ‘Oh, that’s it.’”

24. “Budget more for the honeymoon versus the actual wedding. I could’ve totally spent two plus weeks in Jamaica and had a more intimate wedding!”

25. “All those DIY weddings you see where everything looks so rustic and shabby chic or whatever — TOTAL LIES. Hands down it is cheaper and more efficient to have your wedding at a place that is used to hosting weddings and is equipped to do so. I never, ever thought I’d get married at a ‘wedding venue’ but I did — and everything went so smoothly and those people know their shit!! I didn’t have to worry about anything except the details that I could have fun making myself, and that added personality without worrying about huge things on the day of the wedding.”

26. “We limited inviting my wife’s family to direct family and some first cousins only. Her dad has 10 siblings and her mom has four and it would have gotten hugely out of hand really quickly. Deciding who not to invite is important.”

27. “Remember to always invite the friend who will enjoy the party the most. You may be slightly embarrassed when your grandmother is watching them dance but they know how to get people dancing. Besides she’s seen it all before!”

Is there something you wish you’d done differently on your wedding day?

28. “I wish we had a professional videographer. We had a photographer, but video of the ceremony and the reception would’ve been nice to have.”

29. “I would have had the facilities people turn on the air conditioning in the party venue earlier. Way earlier. It was 100 damn degrees in there and people were crowded around the A/C vent to cool down.”

30. “We designed our own invites and spent huge amounts of time on that trying to wow everyone. But I think in retrospect people don’t care about the invite unless it’s a train wreck. Simple and clean and get the hell out of Dodge.”

31. “Wish I wasn’t quite so drunk at the end of the evening.”

32. “Only thing I regret is that I wish I had taken a moment to slow down and really enjoy the reception while it was going on. Everyone tells you to do that because it will go FAST. But holy hell, it really flies by and then this event that you’ve been building up to for months, or even YEARS, is suddenly over!”

Poise : Mary

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Model Photographer | Mary | Charlotte, NC | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Our Story : Thomas and Nikki

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Recently, I worked as a Secondary Photographer for Washington D.C. based Wedding Photographer Bethany Grace Photography (http://bethanygracephoto.com). Bethany is a wonderful photographer and this couple was the cutest! I thoroughly enjoyed photographing Nikki and Thomas's wedding. Here are some of my shots from the day!

Congratulations Nikki and Thomas!

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Thomas and Nikki | Harvest Acres Farm | Limestone, Tennessee | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Our Story : Ashley & John

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Five years ago today it was foggy and miserable. Five years ago today my motivation to go outside and photograph like I planned was out the window and 100 miles down the road. Five years ago today I was pushing myself out the door and begrudgingly starting up my car.

Five years ago today was one of the most memorable days of my photography career.

Five years ago today, September 11th 2009, I donned on some ratty sweat pants, fingerless gloves, an oversized hoodie, my torn up converse, grabbed my camera bag and headed out the door to do some scenic photography. I was a college student in Tennessee at this point in my life and begging to graduate and get on with my career as a photographer. I'm not sure why it had all hit me that morning, but I was rebelling against my own will.

As I approached the parking lot for the dam, I noticed several men walking around in tuxedos. I had assumed the dam would be vacant due to the weather and the early hour at which I arrived. Curious, I parked and poked my head around the corner. More men in tuxedos, a few well-dressed ladies and a younger boy running around with a point-and-shoot camera taking pictures of these people.

Piecing together the idea that this very well might be a wedding or some big to-do, I asked someone what was going on.

"My daughter is getting married today," the Father of the Bride answered me.

I congratulated him and he started to chat a bit. His daughter, Ashley, and soon-to-be son-in-law, John, had been planning their wedding for next summer. Ashley, a school teacher, had to plan everything around her school schedule, but John, who was an enlisted Marine, found out Monday of that week he was being deployed early.

This was their last minute wedding.

I had a heavy tug on my heart and a pressure on my tongue to ask if they had a wedding photographer. After debating in my head for a little while, the urge grew stronger. Suddenly, before I even decided to ask, I heard myself saying, "do you have a photographer?" 

"No."

One syllable and I knew I needed to do something. One syllable and I realized my purpose for going to the dam the day in the miserable gray weather at such an ungodly hour.

Now, every time I am burdened with stress, lose sight of my purpose of begin to lack motivation and think 'I'll just stay inside today,' I remember that foggy September morning. I remember the lack of motivation I felt and I think of the wedding photographs Ashley and John would not have received if I had stayed in bed. I remember that I have this day to live, these memories to make and there is no time like the present to live.

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Wedding Photographer | Ashley & John | Bristol Virginia | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

Ribbons & Roses : Jessica

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

This lovely lady is got married yesterday! 

Congratulations to newlyweds Jessica and Matt! These two are just perfect together! It has been such a blessing to be part of their journey. I can't wait to share their wedding images!

For now, here are Jessica's Bridal Portraits :)

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }

{ North Carolina Portrait Photographer | Winston Salem | Jessica's Bridal Portraits | Photography by Alyson Lawton }