What To Wear To Your Couples' Session

Comment

What To Wear To Your Couples' Session

It's almost here! My annual limited couples' sessions! This year I am particularly excited because I will be partnering with Urban League of the Upstate (in Greenville, SC) and Sowing Seeds into the Midlands (in Columbia, SC) to donate each session fee to these organizations!

Click here to learn more about how to book.

If you've already done so, you may have asked the questions, "What should I wear?"

I've got you covered.

Comfort Over Everything

If my style had a motto, this would be it. Being comfortable is the most important thing you should consider when selecting your wardrobe for your shoot. There will be both poses of sitting and standing, so whatever you choose should be ideal for both. There are options that offer style and comfort, for both men and women.

For women, consider a dress or jumpsuit. One-piece options eliminate the need to coordinating multiple pieces together. However, if you decide on a skirt or pair of slacks, feel free to get creative with the paired options.

Men, a pair of khakis or your favorite pair of jeans you wear on date nights would work perfectly.

best wedding photographer in greenville sc latoya dixon photography

 

Colors

Although all colors look great on camera, there will be some cuddling and canoodling during your session. Avoid bright, neon-like colors which could leave a color cast on your partner/spouse's face or clothing. Bold colors and neutrals will look better against the natural elements of both the venues in Greenville and Columbia.

best wedding photographer in greenville sc latoya dixon photography

Coordinate

Coordinate, don't match. You and your partner do not have to both wear the same color tops and bottoms. You want to complement each other, not look like brother and sister (ouch)! Use contrasting and complementary colors to enhance each other's look.

best wedding photographer in greenville latoya dixon photography

Accessorize

Take your outfit up a notch with some accessories; watches, bracelets, beads, or hats are all subtle additions that can add more personality to your session. 

I have been ready for so long to announce these couples' sessions and they are finally here! I don't want you to miss out so click the link below to learn more about them and book a session. Availability is limited so please get your session booked as soon as possible!

 

Greenville+SC+Wedding+Photographer+Latoya+Dixon+Photography.jpeg

Comment

Affirmations To Avoid Stress and Find Calm on Your Wedding Day

Comment

Affirmations To Avoid Stress and Find Calm on Your Wedding Day

Stress is the #1 uninvited guest to a wedding day. After months of planning and gathering order, even the best of us might find nerves and stress creeping into our day of celebration. Through meditation with Black Mom's Guide to Calm, I've learned to acknowledge the distracting thoughts, let them go, then return focus to what matters most.

Try this practice when you find yourself becoming overwhelmed on your wedding day, whether you're dealing with overbearing family members, stressing over the timeline, or trying to keep your heart inside your chest from sheer nerves. I've compiled a list of positive affirmations to avoid stress and help you find calm on your wedding day.

Enjoy!

I only attract good vibrations on my special day.

The power of love will make my day perfect.

I trust my vendors will be at their best.

-- A Sunrise Media Group

no stress calm on wedding day latoya dixon photography

 

I inhale peace and exhale overwhelm.

I focus on the thoughts that bring me peace and joy.

I let my worries go so I can be here for the beauty that surrounds me now.

-- Black Mom's Guide to Calm

no stress calm on wedding day latoya dixon photography

 

All I need to do right now is breathe.

My need to feel calm is being fully met.

I discover peace in those around me and respond to them with peace.

-- Spirituality Health

no stress calm on wedding day latoya dixon photography

 

I am relaxed and full of energy and inner strength under all circumstances.

All unnecessary thoughts are leaving my mind now, letting me experience inner peace.

All worries and anxieties are leaving my mind, making space for calmness and peace.

-- Look Within You

no stress calm on wedding day latoya dixon photography

 

All is well. Right here. Right now.

I connect with the comforting silence of my Soul.

I radiate peace and love to others, helping them to be in a state of peace and love.

-- Spirit Voyage

Looking for an easy-going photographer who will help you keep your cool on your wedding day? Contact me today to check if your wedding date is available!

Comment

20 of the Best Places to Take Engagement Photos in Greenville, SC

Comment

20 of the Best Places to Take Engagement Photos in Greenville, SC

If you've ever wondered, "Where should we take our engagement photos in Greenville", you need not wonder any longer. As a weddings and engagement photographer in Greenville, I've searched, scouted, and have come to find a few places that I love and my clients do as well. The following list contains places that are public, open, private, intimate, large, small, and in between, offering you a little bit of what Greenville, SC has to offer.

1. Falls Park on the Reedy

Nothing is more iconic to Greenville than Fall's Park on the Reedy. This park is nestled right in the center of downtown, but offers a natural getaway with several pockets to take photos. Liberty Bridge stretches across the Falls and offers architectural eye-candy. Because Falls Park is so central, it his highly requested. However the park is so big that you're guaranteed to find an area private and quiet to take your photos. If you prefer more privacy, avoid scheduling shoots during high traffic times of the day.

If Greenville is significant to you and your partner, consider having your engagement photos taken at Falls Park.

liberty bridge Greenville sc falls park on the reedy latoya dixon photography
falls park on the reedy engagement photos latoya dixon photography
 

2. The Loft at Soby’s

The Loft at Soby's is a charming event venue located in Downtown Greenville. The Loft sits above the Soby's restaurant. For couples who want a more cozy, secluded engagement session with a private rooftop, check out The Loft at Soby's.

the loft at sobys greenville sc engagement photography latoya dixon photography
the loft at soby's engagement photographer latoya dixon photography
 

3. The Village of West Greenville

The Village of West Greenville has undergone some significant changes in recent years to deem it Greenville's arts district. While new developments continue to pour in, The Village has managed to keep its charm. If you're looking for downtown proximity without the downtown traffic, head to The Village of West Greenville for your engagement photos.

the village of west greenville engagement photography latoya dixon photography
 

4. Furman University

Furman University has a beautiful campus that features a rose garden, the Furman mall, and the Furman lake to name a few. Furman is really green if you prefer a well-manicured and natural feel to your engagement session.

furman university engagement photography latoya dixon photography
furman university engagement session latoya dixon photography
 

5. Hyatt Regency

Downtown Greenville's Hyatt Regency is a photographer's dream with large windows that allow the most beautiful light to pour in. The Hyatt can offer both a formal and casual feel for engagement photos.

hyatt regency greenville engagement photos latoya dixon photography
hyatt regency greenville engagement photos latoya dixon photography
 

6. McPherson Park

McPherson Park is located in Downtown Greenville just a short walk away from the city's center. McPherson is lush and green during the warmer months for an outdoorsy-inpsired engagement session.

mcpherson park engagement session greenville latoya dixon photography
 

7. Legacy Park

Legacy Park was inpsired by NYC's Central Park and is located in the Verdae area off of Rocky Slope Road. There is lots of green space at Legacy Park for you to take advantage of while taking your engagement photos.

 

9. Wyche Pavilion

If you're at Falls Park you may as well visit Wyche Pavilion while taking your engagement photos. 

 

9. The Venue at Falls Park

The Venue at Falls Park recently opened and offers a modern, intimate space with white washed walls.

 

10. Taylor's Mill

The Taylor's Mill community and venue is located out in Taylors, SC. Taylor's Mill is an actual mill that has been revitalized. If you are looking for an industrial element to add you your engagement photos, consider Taylor's Mill.

 

11. Rock Quarry Garden

 

12. Cedar Falls

 

13. Lake Conestee

Lake Conestee Nature Park is located in Mauldin. Lake Conestee is for nature lovers.

 

14. Heritage Park

 

15. Southern Bleachery

 

16. Campbell's Covered Bridge

 

18. Poinsett Bridge

 

19. The Loom at Cotton Mill

 

20. Wildcat Falls

 

21. Caesar's Head


These are a few of my favorite places that I've taken engagement photos at around the Greenville/Upstate area as well as places I'd like to one day shoot at. While I am primarily based in Greenville, I love to travel to cities like Asheville, Atlanta, Charlotte, Columbia, and Charleston. If you're looking for other options, I have an arsenal of locations I'd love to share with you to consider for your engagement shoot.

best greenville engagement photographer latoya dixon photography

Ready to Book?

Contact Me Below.

Comment

3 Ways To Feel Comfortable on Camera with Your Partner

Comment

3 Ways To Feel Comfortable on Camera with Your Partner

A successful photo shoot with your partner includes a few things:

  1. You both become relaxed around me and with each other
  2. The two of you share a laugh.
  3. You find a moment of connection in which you completely forget I’m even there.

All of my client’s favorite photos are those that are less posed and more moments. If you haven’t worked with me before you may wonder how in the world can I get this comfortable with my significant other AND have a stranger capture it.

Well, first of all...I’m no stranger. Or at least, I won’t be by the time our session is over. I take building realationships (yes,I meant to spell it like that) with my clients very seriously. I respect the fact during a couples session you are making an investment to celebrate your relationship with photos, and in return, I invest time to get to know the two of you better. I believe that this is the first step in creating your most treasured images together.

I also know that feeling comfortable on camera takes time as well and I will be sharing 3 ways you can feel comfortable on camera with your partner.

Get Awkward

I want us to reframe how we think about awkwardness. When we experience it, it is a level of unfamiliarity. Take away the initial nerves, stress, and discomfort from a situation and you no longer experience awkwardness. In order to get the photos you really desire, overcome the feeling of awkwardness by getting awkward. You are free to just be, no matter how many unfl attering faces you make or however many times you mistakenly blink mid-shot.

Fun Fact: I’ve never received feedback from a client that said “hey, I look really silly in this photo” It’s not about how you look; it’s about how you feel during the session and the memories that come to mind when you look back at your albums.

engagement photographer greenville sc wedding photography latoya dixon photography

Talk About Each Other

Nothing brings a couple together quite like affirming one another does. Another way to get more comfortable with your partner on camera is by talking about one another. What do you love? What do they do to make you laugh? What’s a story about them that you’ll never forget? This is truly when I take a step back and let the moment unfold. Although you’re talking about your partner, you’re entering into a moment of genuine connection by acknowledging the things that make being with your significant other worth it. Talking about one another generally leads to a moment like this:

greenville sc engagement photographers latoya dixon photography

 

Come Prepared To Love on Your Partner

Preparedness is key no matter what kind of photo session you invest in. You can find many resources on what to wear for your engagement shoot, places to take your engagement photos, etc. But there is a a level of mental preparedness you must also be mindful of.

Come prepared to love on your partner. Write down a few things you love most of about them.

If you’re not comfortable with getting physically close on your own, I can’t promise to magically make your photos appear as if you do. Spend some time the day before your session, or even hours before, sitting next to one another, holding hands, making some time for genuine conversation. It’s a much needed ice breaker for going into a session where you plan to celebrate your connection.

best engagement photographer greenville sc latoya dixon photography

 

The prerequisite for a couples session that feels free, organic, and fun is to have a solid foundation, a little prep work done, and embracing each other for who you truly are. If you’re interested in booking a session with your significant other for an engagement, anniversary, or just because, contact me here so we can begin discussing how to create a session for you and your lover that leaves you with reminders of why loving them is worth it.

 

 Hey there! I'm Latoya & I'm a wedding and couples connection photographer. I understand that that being behind the camera can feel a bit uncomfortable if you only do it once or twice a year (if that many times), but I'm here to help allay those fears and provide you with photos that make you remember why being with your partner is absolutely worth it!

Hey there! I'm Latoya & I'm a wedding and couples connection photographer. I understand that that being behind the camera can feel a bit uncomfortable if you only do it once or twice a year (if that many times), but I'm here to help allay those fears and provide you with photos that make you remember why being with your partner is absolutely worth it!

Comment

How to Find the Right Wedding Vendor For You

Comment

How to Find the Right Wedding Vendor For You

Whether you have a full wedding experience or opt for choose to celebrate less traditional and more intimate there will always be a few decisions made for wedding-day coordination.  Wedding planners and coordinators make this feat so much easier, but how do you get to the point where you're selecting wedding vendors that are right for you? 

It is my strong belief that wedding vendors should be chosen thoughtfully and carefully, whether its your wedding photographer or your florist. In this post I'll share how you can find the right wedding vendor for YOU.

1. Online research is a start.

Thank goodness for the internet, amirite? At the click of a button and a few targeted keywords, like "Greenville LGBTQ-friendly wedding photographer", for example, and you'll return hundreds and thousands of results. Or maybe you heard about a vendor through a friend and took to the internet to find out more information. Online research can help you answer a multitude of questions before you even fill out a contact form or pick up the phone. You can find examples of vendors' work, read testimonials, and reviews, and learn more about them as individuals or the company in general. Leverage online research, but don't let it be the end of your search for the best wedding vendor for you.

2. What do you care most about?

 Have you ever been asked or asked someone what they wanted to eat and their initial response was, "I don't care?" Then after you rattle off a few places to eat, they decline each one? I've done this (and no, I'm not proud of it).

But the truth is that when looking for vendors for your wedding, you may not think you know what you want at first until you hear what's offered. However, to make your search more efficient, go forth by asking questions you really care about.

Do you prefer someone local? Do you have a particular style in mind? Are you on a specific budget? The important thing here is to really focus on what matters to you. There are several wedding blogs that have published questions to ask your vendors, but be sure the questions you ask really resonate with you. A professional vendor will be able to assure your needs are met with them or refer you to someone else who can deliver based on your needs.

3. Meet with vendors in person.

You may often hear me talk about effective communication. While I've failed at it more often than I've succeeded, it's an ongoing topic I'm always willing to be a student of. 

I recently took a class on leadership where we discussed just want effective communication is. The instructor challenged us to guess what the greatest indicators of how well a message is communicated. The results may surprise you:

Content  is only 7% of effective communication.

Tone comes next at 38%

But, Body Language accounts for a whopping 55% of clearly conveying a message.

What does this mean? If you have the opportunity to do so, ask to meet your potential wedding vendor in person. If you can't physically meet due to location, then opt for a video interview. 

But what if I don't have time to do this? I'm an introvert; this is so not my style.

I don't recommend meeting with everyone you find to be a prospective match, but if you've wittled down your list and found that this vendor meets all your criteria on paper it's a great next step. Not only will you get a better understanding of how well this vendor communicates with you, but you can address all of your questions and concerns with all of the cues of communication present.

4. What are your values?

Did you hear about the 2015 wedding cake court case in which a Colorado baker refused to bake a wedding cake for a same sex couple? Without getting into the nitty gritty details, I would say that values should be at the forefront of a decision of hiring a wedding vendor.  Particularly if you are a member of a marginalized or underrepresented group, I encourage to you look where you are celebrated, not tolerated. I've had a range of LDP clients who have made their values clear-- whether they are same sex, religious, non-religious, non-traditional, etc. Voice your values and what you care about to your vendors and be sure that they can not only provide a service for you, but support you as well.

5. Ask a friend.

Word of mouth referrals are the bread and butter of small business. When a friend or family member shares a positive experience with a vendor, you are more likely to trust his/her advice as opposed to a stranger's review.

I am happy to announce a new wedding referral program for LDP Friends and Clients. Learn about our referral program here.

greenville asheville atlanta same sex wedding photographer latoya dixon photography

Have you successfully found your wedding vendors? What are some tips you'd like to give someone who is in this process now? Share in the comments.

Comment

I Didn't Know What to Say

2 Comments

I Didn't Know What to Say

The night before my 27th birthday, my husband and son took me out to dinner here in Greenville. It was nothing fancy; each year my wish is pretty much the same-- I want to have a full belly of comfort food without having to cook it myself.

Greenville SC Photographer Latoya Dixon Photography

 

We indulged in a few appetizers, my entree of a ginger-crusted salmon with a side of wasabi mashed potatoes (thank you, Yard House...this is my go-to order now), and had just received my complimentary birthday dessert when I got the call.

Greenville SC Photographer Latoya Dixon Photography

 

It was my grandmother. I quickly answered as I figured she was calling to wish me an early birthday. Instead, I learned that my godmother had suffered a fatal heart attack.

Greenville SC Photographer Latoya Dixon Photography

 

“WHO?!”

 

She repeated herself then encouraged me to call my godbrother who was apparently with her during the time of her passing.

Greenville SC Photographer Latoya Dixon Photography

 

I was stunned myself. I didn’t know what to say. But I called him anyway. And I just couldn’t believe how he even had the capacity to answer the phone to confirm what had happened.

 

The rest of the weekend and the days following I tried to process what happened. I still ride around in my car asking questioning whether she’s really gone. I didn’t understand it then and today is not much different.

Greenville SC Photographer Latoya Dixon Photography

 

Because I didn’t have the words to vocalize or even journal to share how I was feeling, I decided to take some self portraits.  A year later, I can still look back and remember that initial feeling of both disbelief and surrealism. And I realize that although I may never understand why my godmother left us so suddenly, I do have a photographs I took of her even those smartphone selfies we took together that help me remember her smile, her side eyes, and her voice.

Monica A. Young

1970-2017

Greenville SC Photographer Latoya Dixon Photography

2 Comments

Greenville Florist, Urban Petals | Anna Stouffer

Comment

Greenville Florist, Urban Petals | Anna Stouffer

Vendor Spotlight

Being a wedding photographer comes with some pretty sweet perks-- I get to meet new people, I get to take pretty pictures of people , and sometimes I get to eat cake. But I also get the opportunity to work alongside some incredibly talented individuals, fellow vendors who have a hand in making a wedding day vision come to life.

One of those is Anna Stouffer of Urban Petals. Urban Petals is a floral and event design studio based in Greer, SC, just outside of Greenville.  Urban Petals "offers exquisitely styled florals for weddings, events, and other life celebrations, as well as event design services.  Anna and her team have won over plenty of southern brides, heart and soul, with timeless, luxurious garden-style designs. Urban Petals services clients throughout South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia from a beautiful studio in Greer, SC, and is available for travel."

 Photo by Heather Payne

Photo by Heather Payne

 

I met Anna back in 2016 when I started to plan my very first styled shoot at Bolt Farm Treehouse in Walhalla, SC. I had a vision in mind and Anna was committed to help me see it to completion. So committed that she actually came to the location on the day of the shoot and helped with everything from getting the models together, to styling to holding reflectors and assisting on the photography end. 

greenville sc photographer latoya dixon photography bolt farm treehouse
greenville sc photographer latoya dixon photography bolt farm treehouse
greenville sc photographer latoya dixon photography bolt farm treehouse
greenville sc photographer latoya dixon photography bolt farm treehouse
greenville sc photographer latoya dixon photography bolt farm treehouse

 

I loved how Anna brought her expertise in floral and styling to our shoot that day. It was later featured in publications like Borrowed and Blue and Catalyst Wedding Co. Having worked with her on location for this project showed me just the type of professional Anna is--committed, a team player, and willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done.

If you're looking for a florist for your wedding or event, Anna and Urban Petals is my solid recommendation.

Follow Urban Petals online!

Website - www.urbanpetalsllc.com

Facebook - www.facebook.com/urbanpetalsllc

Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/urbanpetals/

Comment

Intimate Engagement Session at Falls Park on the Reedy in Greenville, SC | Cat & Lauren

Comment

Intimate Engagement Session at Falls Park on the Reedy in Greenville, SC | Cat & Lauren

When I contacted Cat to move forward with our consultation for hers and Lauren's wedding, she suggested that I meet her at the Tipsy Taco, a local Greenville taco joint. I knew that no matter the outcome, I would love them. Fortunately, they chose me to photograph both their engagement and their wedding.

We met up at Falls Park which is an iconic Greenville landmark. The park is one of my favorite places to shoot at (and most requested) because there are several nooks and crannies you can find that look different for each couple.

We explored the park and got some beautiful shots and later headed inside for coffee at Spill the Beans. Lauren sealed the cozy vibe by playing a song on her guitar.

Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Same Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography
Latoya Dixon Photography-57.jpg

We ended the session by going to the Village of West Greenville. During that weekend the Great American eclipse was occurring. Cat and Lauren was prepared with their eclipse glasses.

Latoya Dixon Photography-80.jpgSame Sex LGBTQ Wedding Photographer Falls Park on the Reedy Greenville SC Latoya Dixon Photography

Comment

Personal Reflections: Mind, Body, and Soul

Comment

Personal Reflections: Mind, Body, and Soul

Body

In November of last year, I underwent a surgical procedure called a microdiscectomy. For over a year I’d walked through life in pain, discomfort, and pressured sciatic nerve due to a herniated disc.

After my symptoms started I tried as many conservative methods as possible: chiropractic, physical therapy (twice), and  steroid injections. Most provided temporary relief, but my body was really communicating that there was a much bigger issue that just being band-aided. Surgery was my last resort, but proved to be much more effective.

During the time I was managing my pain, I also took up yoga. My friend Jamie is the creator or Black Girls Guide to Calm and I’d show up to her Mind, Body, and Soul yoga sessions at Legacy Park on Sunday mornings. I left each session feeling calm, refreshed, and at peace. Sometimes after yoga, we’d go for brunch which was also a good excuse for some quality girl time.

Greenville SC Wedding Photographer Latoya Dixon Photography

Mind

This led me to spending more time at yoga, picking up meditation, and tapping into a journey of self-discovery of mind, body, and soul.

After my injury, I decided that I would no longer put my body on mute whenever it tried to tell me something. I really can’t afford to after undergoing surgery anyway. My mind? Well, we are still a work in progress. I often find that my thoughts get stuck up there, adding to the confusion. It’s helped that I’ve picked up journaling again and am entrusting those intimate thoughts and feelings to my husband and closest friends to help me sort through them.

My soul is finding joy in this process. There was a point where I wanted to completely give up wedding photography. I was afraid, of course, that I might re-injure myself (there’s a 15% chance of re-herniation even though I wasn’t doing anything wedding-related to injure myself. But I’m back on the grind (read: playing catch up)  in hopes that I’ll see another successful year with even more clients that make me love this job even more.

 

* Latoya

Comment

Hyatt Regency, Downtown Greenville Anniversary Session | Lateatia & Charles

Comment

Hyatt Regency, Downtown Greenville Anniversary Session | Lateatia & Charles

I met Lateatia this year through The Queen Photographers. She's been a constant source of laughs and support. When she reached out to me to capture her and her husband's anniversary photos, I was honored, especially since they'd be traveling up from Columbia.

Rainy Day Blues

Lateatia and Charles must have brought the rain to Greenville because the first drop didn't fall until they arrived on location. It was outdoors and even though we had umbrellas, it didn't make for the comfort and coziness we wanted to show in their photos. We headed to Downtown Greenville to the Hyatt Regency.

Hyatt Regency - Greenville

hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography
hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography
hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography
Ravenell-27.jpghyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography
hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography

Isn't she gorgeous?!

hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography
hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography
hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography

Downtown Greenville

The rain let up a bit so we decided to head back outside to stroll the streets. Lateatia and Charles were celebrating 11 years of marriage anyway. I'm sure they've been through more together than a little rain ;)

hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography
hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography
hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography
hyatt regency downtown greenville anniversary session latoya dixon photography

Ready To Book

Contact me today to talk about the love you want to celebrate with a photo session. We'll be sure to make it 100% YOU no matter the weather.

Comment