Steve + Brianna: Family Farm Wedding in Indiana, PA
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Steve and Brianna tied the knot this past weekend at Brianna’s family’s farm in the beautiful Brush Valley, Pennsylvania, just a few miles down the road from Indiana. I was so excited to photograph this beautiful wedding as soon as I spent a half an hour on the family farm riding around in their ATV a few weeks before the big day. Normally a beef farm, the grounds were transformed to be fit for a sweet and romantic wedding - Brianna’s dad even gave up his hay barn and hung chandeliers that he “might just keep up” now that the festivities are over! One of the best parts of the day, however, was seeing the bride ride in to the ceremony on the hay wagon! The ceremony was held at a small country church right up the road from the family farm - the same church Brianna’s parents were married at!

Steve and Brianna met when they attended Penn State, studying agricultural programs, and now live in the eastern part of the state working on a dairy farm. Steve milks the cows and Brianna manages their nutrition. How heckin’ cute is that?! I had no idea how intense dairy farming was until spending some time with these two - which was a rare occurrence since Steve only gets a few days off a year or something crazy like that! He even took a call during photos to answer questions about feeding and started that call with “Sorry I missed you, I was getting married.” For real?!?! He’s so dedicated!!!

The dairy farmer theme really came full circle for me when I saw all the “dairy” touches at the reception: the “BondsSayIMoo” hashtag, the cheesecake wedding cake, cowtail candy favors, the cute cow decor - but all tastefully done. (Let’s talk about that cheesecake for a minute - this angel of a bride gave me a WHOLE one to take home. Yes, I happily accept tips in cheesecake.) I hope you enjoy some of my favorite shots from the time two dairy farmers said “I Moo.” So cheesy. Yay dairy puns.

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
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Autumn Family Session at Blue Spruce Park, Indiana PA
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Blue Spruce park is one of a few hidden gems in the Indiana County region that is perfect for family photos. Because of the beautiful (but not too big) lake, mossy areas under beautiful trees, footbridges and creeks, and amazing golden sunlight in the evenings, it’s definitely a favorite! It’s also easy to find and offers a great playground for the kiddos after a successful session!

I have had the pleasure of photographing Kristen and Shane for years now, starting with their amazing wedding in 2012! Now two more sweet faces are a part of the gang! Here’s some of my favorite shots from their family session at Blue Spruce last weekend!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
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Wedding Day Time Wasters
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

The thing that contributes most to a stressful wedding day is not having enough TIME!! I’m sure you’ve planned out all of your events and your timeline is perfect (still need timeline advice? Click here for this freebie timeline tool download!), but that doesn’t mean time won’t be wasted on your wedding day! Wasted time can put a lot of pressure on you, your vendors, your bridal party, and your spouse! It can mean that photos get cut short, dancing gets cut short, people have to rush to get ready, or guests have to wait longer, just to name a few. Have I scared you yet? Not my intention!! Your biggest asset will be having a calm, collected attitude, and the ability to roll with anything that comes up definitely means that you will be totally fine! So if knowing event times and details stress you out, don’t worry - share this post with your maid or matron of honor, your mom, or any other trusted friend (but not someone that will turn into a drill sergeant!) to watch out for these minute-hogging pitfalls and to steer clear of them to help keep things moving along.

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Pack Your Bags

If you’re the kind of person that often says “where’s my _____?”, this one is for you! Two nights before your wedding (yes, two), pack a suitcase of ALL the things you need to get ready for your wedding. Things like undergarments, toiletries (perfume, etc), cell phone chargers, special props for photos, hair accessories, gifts, tips and final payments in their own envelopes, and of course your emergency kit items must all be gathered up well in advance. This is also a great time to make sure all of your details that your photographer will want to photograph are in their own separate box or suitcase. Things like your shoes, jewelry, garters, and invite suite are a great place to start!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Transportation

It’s very helpful to figure out ride situations BEFORE your wedding day. I was guilty of this one too, so no judgement here my friend! Make sure each bridal party member has a seat in a vehicle to and from both the ceremony and reception. If you are doing a shuttle for your guests to arrive at your ceremony, give some extra time for your ceremony to be delayed due to late comers catching the last shuttle, or communicate well and early that 2:00 means 2:00, sorry not sorry!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Don’t Wander Off!

This one is especially important for weddings where the ceremony and reception are at the same location: if you want family photos done directly after the ceremony, let the people who are in them know well in advance. I tell my brides to talk about this with their family and bridal party at the rehearsal, that way, they are already in the mind frame of “sticking around” after the ceremony for photos because they saw and rehearsed it the night before. This is probably the BIGGEST time waster of all, and I would never want you to have to give up a photo because a family member has wandered off. Let them know early, and let them know multiple times!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Clean Up Crew

After you finally have Uncle Bob standing in place and the family photos are taken, designate someone that is not in the bridal party or a part of photos to come to clean up the church or ceremony site. Unsuspecting bridesmaids taking time to rip off pew bows and gather up your unity candle will just push the start of photos back. This is also a great point to remember at the END of the night too! Figure out who will gather up all your personal decorations and belongings like your champagne flutes, signs, etc.

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Receiving Line

Don’t get me wrong - I love receiving lines! If giving your guests a hug or a handshake right after you say I do is important to you, then set aside at least a half an hour for it! As soon as the ceremony is over, the photographer’s clock is ticking. Help him or her along by keeping things brief and focused! If you need a restroom break, now’s the time to do it!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Table Visits

After you and your groom eat dinner, it’s normal for you both to visit each table and say a brief hello and thank you to your guests, but it can be really hard to tear yourself away from conversations and keep things moving so that your DJ has enough time to fit all your events in. A good strategy is to eat first and eat relatively quickly, so you can start your visits as your guests are just starting their meal. Another tactic is to play good cop, bad cop with your spouse. If one of you gets wrapped up in a conversation, the other can politely interrupt and say “we should probably get over to the next table.”

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Let me leave you with this bit of advice: if you surround yourself with people you trust, feel comfortable with, and who are experienced, you will float above any small little ripples that come up during your day. Think of your bridal party, your family, and your vendors like your shield - you don’t have to feel, or deal with, any stressors as long as someone is aware they can happen, and you have breathing room in your timeline to let the day play out as it will.

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Creatives and Burn Out: You Are Enough
 Adventuring in Lawrenceville with a beloved friend! photo cred: Mary Kuehn (the friend, lol)

Adventuring in Lawrenceville with a beloved friend! photo cred: Mary Kuehn (the friend, lol)

Hi friend! This is a personal blog post, which I love to do every once and a while. Transparency means so much when getting to know your photog! If you want to see more portfolio-like content, click on over here!

When people talk about burn-out, it's generally meant that they feel overwhelmed, over scheduled, stressed out, in a rut, passionless, cynical, "over it", hopeless, on and on. It might seem like someone who's in a creative field - who's constantly CREATING something new, something fresh, something exciting - would find it hard to reach that place, right? Maybe you are a creative reading this, and find yourself comparing your work to others, struggling to find your passion, not looking forward to things you used to? Maybe you haven't blogged in two weeks (ahem) and you are just wanting a break to actually be at your house and spend time there, maybe even clean it? (that always gets pushed to the bottom of the list!)

Burn-out is real, and burn-out is relative. Not everyone can produce the same amount in a day, whether that be photos, social media content, articles, products, whatever whatever whatever! I often have to check my heart to not only stop myself from judging MY performance against others, but others against mine! How terrible does that sound? If you are treating others, and yourself, based on what you/they produce, you need to check that at the door. Give yourself, and others, grace! It's okay to leave a few things unchecked on your to-do list. Nothing is as urgent as taking care of yourself and your soul.

I feel that transparency and self-care, along with ALLOWING yourself to put on the brakes every once and a while is NECESSARY - and definitely something I struggle with a lot. Get coffee with me, and certainly you will hear the phrase "I never feel like I'm doing ENOUGH." And I know a LOT of other people that feel this way too. You set a standard for yourself, and if you don't meet it, you "fail." But I realized recently that standards HAVE to be fluid. Your "enough" is based on a million things that are NOT constant like time, energy, commitments, health, family... so why should your standards be rigid if the rest of your life is not? 

If you a religious person, you may have heard the phrase that "Jesus is enough." That sounds amazing and is probably on a t-shirt somewhere, but what does that actually, tangibly mean and how do I live my life showing that I believe that? I'm sure the answer is different for everyone, but what I've found is that to embrace that God is enough and not rely on yourself means that first you set realistic standards of what you CAN do. Be honest with yourself. Then, you do what you CAN in a day given all the factors against you. At the end of the day when you're looking at all the things you didn't get done but wanted to, you then CHOOSE to not worry, be thankful for what you DID get done, and literally just relax and take time to recharge. Some pastors call that "resting in grace" - and I had to figure out what that tangibly meant. I spend so much time and mental energy thinking about what I HAVE to do, that figuring out what I WANT to do with my free time (that I have to MAKE) was a challenge. But now, I realize that's what "resting in grace" means for me: just rest, and stop freaking out, because God's got you and it's going to be okay.

You may know that almost 3 years ago now I lost my father to a really aggressive cancer. I often think about how he worked so hard as a mechanic his whole life, with the goal of retirement and adventuring with mom, taking trips, and filling his time with memories. Luckily, dad also knew how to enjoy life right where he was, and often took trips and had adventures (not to mention a million hobbies) to enrich the everyday life instead of just grinding away for that "someday." It took me way too long to realize that this is the key to happiness for a "type A" like myself - make time for rest and fun in the here and now.

Before he passed, I inherited his old Canon A1 film camera, and recently committed to learning how to use it and shoot on film. It's a completely different beast than digital, and the thing I've loved most about film is that it FORCES you to go slow, wait for the moment, notice all the details, and value the experience. Digital cameras can rapid-fire off shots like a machine gun, and while that's definitely my go-to for client sessions to ensure I don't miss anything, film has been an amazing antidote for burn-out for me because of all the reasons above. Any time I go on an adventure, the film camera comes along - not so I can "work", but so I can be more present. I'm still not perfect at it, but I'm having a great time with it, and it's a way to keep dad with me in those adventures he loved so much too.

If you are experiencing burn-out, I encourage you to tap into your curiosity. Learn something, pick up a new hobby, inject some "different" into your life. It will give you a distraction, a spark, a reprieve, and you just might discover one more thing that you're awesome at! Hope you enjoy these highlights from a few of my adventures this summer, all shot on film and with dad's A1!

 My husband Brandon in the Greenhouse at The Frick in Pittsburgh.

My husband Brandon in the Greenhouse at The Frick in Pittsburgh.

 Friends Liz and Adam exploring The Frick with us!

Friends Liz and Adam exploring The Frick with us!

 More candids in the greenhouse at The Frick!

More candids in the greenhouse at The Frick!

 Brandon waiting to board the Assateague Adventure boat on our trip to Ocean City.

Brandon waiting to board the Assateague Adventure boat on our trip to Ocean City.

 Skimming for critters in the bay at Assateague.

Skimming for critters in the bay at Assateague.

 Found a lot of minnows!

Found a lot of minnows!

 The bay side of Ocean City, Maryland.

The bay side of Ocean City, Maryland.

 Fenwick Island lighthouse in Delaware.

Fenwick Island lighthouse in Delaware.

 Pier at Ocean City.

Pier at Ocean City.

 My best friend's amazing daughter who let me braid her hair in a crown 'cause she's a princess!

My best friend's amazing daughter who let me braid her hair in a crown 'cause she's a princess!

 My mom Judi and her grumpy pup Digger.

My mom Judi and her grumpy pup Digger.

 Eclipse Bridge at Buttermilk Falls in Armaugh.

Eclipse Bridge at Buttermilk Falls in Armaugh.

 My gorgeous friend Mary and I (behind lens) being silly creatives together in Lawrenceville!

My gorgeous friend Mary and I (behind lens) being silly creatives together in Lawrenceville!

 More gorgeous Mary laying on the ground by ice-cream-esque lines in a cemetery because why not?

More gorgeous Mary laying on the ground by ice-cream-esque lines in a cemetery because why not?

 The street art in Lawrenceville is pretty colorful and amazing.

The street art in Lawrenceville is pretty colorful and amazing.

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Justin + Steph: Summer Wedding with Purple Decor at the Indiana Country Club | Indiana, PA Wedding Photographer
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

This summer wedding at the Indiana Country club was an effortless, sweet day filled with lots of laughs, love, and PURPLE! If you love purple (who doesn't?!) you definitely want to check out how Steph and Justin effortlessly worked it into their wedding day theme! 

These two worked hard to plan lots of fun little details and surprises, beyond just the killer decor. We started the day at the Hilton Garden Inn in Indiana, which is one of my favorite venues with lots of gorgeous natural light. (fun fact - I've shot several weddings here and there is notoriously "no where" to hang the dress. My second shooter saved the day and climbed on the AC unit in front of the window and help up the dress. Behold the wonder of photoshop and an amazing, dare-devil assistant!) Becca wasn't the only one to climb on things, however! Take a guess where I stood to get that jumping shot of Steph and her Maids of Honor?! (follow me on Insta to see behind the scenes!)

Steph and Justin were my dream come true when they opted to do a first look, and made it even more special by doing it at Justin's grandma's house who couldn't attend because of her health. After we did the first look between the bride and groom (with parents watching close by!) in the backyard, we went inside to get some sweet candids with grandma (they even got her a corsage!!)

The ceremony was flawless as they always are at the country club, and I just loved the floral arbor and hourglass sand ceremony! We flew through pictures and got inside for an amazing dinner and dancing from my favorite DJ's! Steph and Justin even played "The Shoe Game", which was a really cute and interactive way for their guests to share some laughs and get to know them! Download the list of questions they used and instructions on how to play here!

Steph and Justin, thank you so much for inviting us along on this journey, for sharing your bridal party snacks and perfume with me, treating us all (even my assistant) so kindly and personally, and being so willing to do whatever it took (Justin ;) ) to make the day exactly what you both wanted it to be. You make me love my job!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

VENDORS:

Lead photographer: Jill Gearhart Photography

Second Photographer: Becca Dietrich

Gown: Maggie Sottero at MB Bride

Makeup: Beth Arnold (bethymae36@gmail.com)

Venue: Indiana County Club

DJ: Royal Heir DJ Services

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Binge on All The Wedding Advice in One Place
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

If you're engaged, the internet can be an amazing source of advice for planning your wedding, and if you've been searching for a resource to binge read all of the wedding advice and wedding tips your browser can handle, then look no further! I've combed through all of my blog posts (almost 2 years of weekly material!) and pulled all of the best info for you soonlyweds to get your binge on! Share this with a bride to be to help answer some of the questions no one thinks to ask!

Do You Need a Second Photographer? How Much Wedding Coverage Is Enough?
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Do you need a second photographer, or "second shooter", for your wedding day? Your budget will definitely be the leading factor in your decision making, but there are some things you should consider when determining your photography budget and if you should hand out some extra cash for another photographer! (fun fact: all photos in this post were done by second shooters!)

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

GUYS GETTING READY

If your groom and groomsmen are getting ready at a separate location than you and you want to have photos of it, you definitely need a second shooter. The time spent traveling back and forth from location to location translates into moments lost for one photographer to be available to capture. A second shooter usually starts out the day in the bridal suite, then gets to spend some quality time with the guys right before your ceremony starts.

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EXTRA HELP

Picture this (real world examples): Uh oh - you and your bridal party have to get somewhere, but your cars are at the reception and you were dropped off at the hotel. A nice photographer and second shooter will be more than happy to offer up their extra seats in the car! Or, you have a room full of groomsmen, lots of straight pins and boutonnieres, and no one knows how to attach them, where to attach them, or how it's supposed to look. Not one, but TWO wedding pro's to the rescue! How about this - you need to get family photos started but Aunt Patty has wandered off to the cocktail hour. Second shooter to the rescue! While your main photographer is starting Patty-less portraits of other family members, a second shooter can wrangle up any stray loved ones that are needed for photos. Sure, all of these situations can be avoided with good communication pre-wedding and some planning ahead, but there is ALWAYS something that pops up that we are more than capable of handling for you which means a LOT less stress for you!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

MULTIPLE ANGLES

If you are doing a first look, a second shooter is a must in order to capture the reactions of both you and your soon to be hubby. A photographer team will know exactly where to stand as to not be in each other's pictures, and you can be sure that you will get the most genuine reactions captured in real time. It's also great to have a second shooter during the ceremony to get both of your reactions to vows, multiple angles of the kiss, and a variety or wide and close up shots of the same moments!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

TONS OF DETAILS

Etsy has nothing on you. People pin YOUR stuff on Pinterest. If you are a DIY bride and have tons of details and custom pieces, a second shooter is a great idea! If each centerpiece is different and you want photos of them, a second shooter is a MUST! While your main photographer will be sure to capture all the details she can, its always great to make sure every little thing is covered by having a second shooter all over the place while pre-reception portraits are being finished up! It's also very helpful to have a second shooter sneak away right after the ceremony to get some wide-angle, untouched room shots of the reception before guests arrive.

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

CANDIDS GALORE

If having lots of photos and memories of your guests having fun is really important to you, then a second shooter should be too. While one photographer "works the dance floor", the other can be snapping candids of non-dancey guests that would never otherwise be in the photos! The availability of two photographer at once also helps with the times where lots of events are happening at once, like the bridal dance or bouquet/garter tosses! 

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GROUP SHOTS

A another set of hands and another brain full of logistical skills can also help out a lot with group photos. Whether it's helping to manage the list of family members for post-ceremony portraits, or going around to each table at the reception and getting group photos while your main photographer is on the dance floor, a second shooter saves so much time and ensures that every guest makes it into a photo! 

Here are some amazing shots all done by second shooters! Its our hope that thinking through the day from multiple angles, multiple places, and multiple people's perspectives will help you choose what kind of coverage is right for you!

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Sam + Brandy - A Camp Themed Wedding at the Picnic Grove | Johnstown, PA Wedding Photographer
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

From the very first time I met with Sam and Brandy, I knew a few things right away: they were totally in love with God, totally in love with each other, totally fun and excited to dance, and totally into outdoors and camping, which is why they created a camp themed wedding! These two thought of everything - the venue was on a campground with beautiful scenery and really unique picnic-style seating arrangements, lanterns on the tables, picnic-style food, a make-your-own trail mix bar, s'mores, and tons of outdoor fun! In fact, the whole entire day was spent outdoors, which Brandy admitted that they were hoping the weather would cooperate. Even though it looked like rain early on in the day, this girl's joy was unshakeable.

Sam was easiest one of my favorite grooms I've ever worked with (I know he will read this and say "you're giving me a big ego" - I heard it twice already hahaha!!), and his groomsmen were just as kind. I really have never met two people so so happy and calm on their wedding day (yes TWO - HE was just as pleasant. Like I said, best groom ever.) The second time I met up with these now friends, Sam was digging the fact that I rode to the meeting on a motorcycle, so he introduced me to each groomsman with the fun fact that "she has a motorcycle!" I also loved how excited he was about his brand new wedding ring tattoo that he got the day before, and appreciated that he wanted to get it in lots of photos! As a photographer, it's very easy to keep your energy high and push yourself creatively when everyone around you is full of joy and patience.

Sam and Brandy take their faith seriously and I was so honored that they were truly a representation of Christ to everyone at their wedding through their kindness and love. They honored their commitment into servanthood with one another by a beautiful foot washing ceremony after their vows, and both the best man's and motion of honor's speeches spoke to just how rooted in Christ these two are. I know that Sam will be an incredible leader to his beautiful bride, and that she will bring him love, respect, and joy for the rest of their lives! 

Sam and Brandy I wish you the best of luck in your new season of life in York! It was truly an honor to not only photograph your wedding, but to make such fantastic new friends!

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 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
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 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
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These [photos] are more than I could have ever imagined. The day was brighter because of you & Brandon. Thank you for being there & working so hard to make everything go smoothly. It’s true—you’re way more than a photographer. You became a friend, coordinated so much, and in case of an emergency, I knew you could be counted on. All you need now is your officiant license & you could run the whole show!
— Brandy

Lead Photographer: Jill Gearhart Photography

Second Photographer : Becca Dietrich

Venue: Resurrection Church's Party Grove 

Gown: David's Bridal 

Hair: Cameron's Salon

Makeup: Danielle Ingram

Bridesmaids Dresses: David's Bridal

Tuxes: Men's Warehouse

Rings: Kay's Jewelers

Florals: Indiana Floral & Flower Boutique

Cake: Suzanne Richbart of Buffalo, NY

Caterer: Joey Del's Catering

DJ: Royal Heir DJ

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Don't Have a Boring Wedding: Ways to Incorporate Color into Your Day!
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Do you want to have a unique wedding, different from everything else you see in the wedding mags and neutral Instagram feeds? Do you live life vibrantly, out loud, and full of color? Is your wardrobe grounded in hues that make you happy rather than neutrals, neutrals, neutrals? I'm sharing ways that you can avoid having a flat wedding and incorporate some color and LIFE into a day that's forever classified as "white." It is, after all, a nice day for a white wedding, but it's an even better day for a RAINBOW one! This post goes out to all my girls who grew up with Lisa Frank's rainbow leopard as their spirit animal, who gravitate towards the vibrant, and just appreciate the richness of life and all the hues it encapsulates!

Now hear me, you don't have to go crazy, and there is certainly an important spot for timeless and elegant, but there's ALWAYS room for pops of fun in your details and decor! This is, after all, a STYLE, and if your style is not colorful, that's perfectly okay! Find a photographer that specializes in the light, airy, neutral palette that makes your heart sing. If you're a wild child and want all the bright hues, hit me up!! In this post, I'm sharing highlights from the most magical styled shoot (aka a "fake" wedding that showcases wedding vendors) that I've ever been blessed to be a part of! We will go through different elements of the day, dripped in color, to give you some ideas as to how your favorite shade can be present during your wedding, and even more importantly, how your personality can shine in a day steeped in tradition.

INVITES

This invitation suite by Penned by Alice features some pretty punchy pinks and unique papers and inks! Invites are your guests first impression of your wedding style and theme, so carefully consider the message the papers, colors, textures, and wording says about you and the vibe you want!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

 

FLORALS

God's creation is full of color, and nowhere is this more evident in a gorgeous floral arrangement. If you want to keep things pretty classic and simple but still get sprinkles on your ice cream from time to time, here's where you can go crazy! A super talented florist like the amazing Kerry Patel can take your fav colors and make a spray that's a stunner.

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

 

CAKE

Desserts make everyone happy. Color makes everyone happy. See a correlation? This is another place where you can cater to the fun and whimsical and play with color. Your cake photos will be a fun part of the day (smashing sugar in your hubby's face?!), so make the cake itself fun too!!  This awesome naked cake by Neverland Bake Shoppe features a baby pink drip, rainbow sprinkles, and more vibrant flowers! Not quite ready to make your cake rainbow-tactic? There's always the cake stand or even the INSIDE of the cake to add a pop of color or fun surprise!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

 

DECOR

If you want to go maximum Lisa Frank, here's where you do it! The amazing, perfect, wonderful Jessica Oh Photography styled this shoot, and her use of balloons, confetti, streamers, and smoke bombs gave a loud and clear message that this is a unique wedding! I guarantee you that if you tell your photographer you want to use colored smoke bombs, they will probably buy you a pony, I mean, cry with happiness. 

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Of course, there's lots of other ways you can put personal touches on your big day, and I want to encourage you to never lose sight of that. Don't let tradition, outside pressure, cost, or especially wedding culture squash your creativity and enthusiasm. Weddings are all about YOU, so make them unmistakably YOU! Enjoy the process and let your imagination run wild!


Workshop:  www.njspark.cowww.instagram.com/njsparkco#igniteworkshop2018

Styling + Coordination :
Jessica OH
www.jessicaohphotography.com
www.facebook.com/jessicaohphotography
www.instagram.com/im_jessica_oh

Floral Design:
Kerry Patel
www.kerrypateldesigns.com
www.instagram.com/kp_designsfloral

Invitation Suite + Hand Lettering:
Alice Lonero, Penned by Alice
www.pennedbyalice.com
www.instagram.com/pennedbyalice

Hair + Makeup
Mary of Lighten Up Salon + Spa
http://www.lightenupsalon.com
www.instagram.com/lightenupsalonandspa

Cakery :
Neverland Bake Shoppe
www.neverlandbakeshoppe.com

Models :
 Mary Elizabeth Trotter & Eric Nakonechny
www.instagram.com/missmarynak

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Lindsey + Aaron: Backyard Summer Wedding in Johnstown, PA
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com

Recently, I was asked by one of my future brides-to-be if I had any advice for people that are camera shy, self-conscious, or just otherwise super awkward around, and hate the idea of being in front of, a .... *gasp*...camera. Let me first say this - not a single one of my brides emerged on the other side of their wedding day photos feeling that they totally bombed. This beautiful bride featured here absolutely rocked her photos, but admittedly did not totally love being in the spotlight with all eyes on her all the time. You would never know it, though, from how serene and peaceful the photos turned out!! But back to the original question - how can you survive your wedding day if you are totally freaked out by your personal paparazzi that you, ironically, hired to follow you around all day? 

STALK YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER

If you already have your photographer picked out, follow their Instagram, like their Facebook page, learn the name of their dog, and memorize their blood type. Just kidding - at least about the last two (my dog's name is Ibanez and my blood is A-, in case you were wondering...). It is very helpful for your photographer, though, if you scope out some of their go-to poses and share which ones you really like the look of. Chances are, when YOU are put in that pose, you will like the result too! If you love the look of candids, full-length shots, close-ups, serious expressions, whatever! - tell your photographer! Have a realistic eye, though - focus on the people and how their bodies look and not on the backgrounds or other details that are unique for every wedding.

FESS UP ABOUT YOUR "FLAWS"

Before your wedding, have an honest heart-to-heart with your photographer about parts of yourself that you don't exactly love. I'm all about #BodyPositive, but I'm also (refreshingly?) realistic, and realize that you MAY not love your arms, teeth, feet, etc. Your husband to be, your photographer, and your bridesmaids all think you look perfect, but if YOU don't feel that way, it will effect how you feel as you are being photographed! Let me know what you're conscious of, and then I can also keep a sharp lookout for those same things and let you know if you need to stand up straighter, look a certain direction, drop your chin, etc. It's also helpful knowing those areas you want to avoid for choosing flattering poses.

ACCENTUATE YOUR ASSETS

And then even more importantly, let's shout the things you love about yourself from the rooftops!!! If you love your hair, you best believe we will get some killer close-ups. If you love your curves, full-length shots are in your future, dear! It's so important to focus on the positives, and if you spend some time really zeroing in on things you actually LIKE about yourself, you might just give yourself the confidence boost you need to rock your portraits like a super-model.

ASK FOR FEEDBACK

If you hire a cool photographer that's not a jerk, ahem, then they will be more than happy to share some sneak-peeks from the back of the camera! A good photographer will also give you verbal feedback as you go and affirm that you are nailing the poses and creating some beautiful portraits! Don't be afraid to speak up for some validation if you need it - chances are, you will grow more comfortable and confident as they day goes on that by the end of the night, you will just be focused on the most important thing - being. married. 


I hope you enjoy this beautiful, intimate wedding featured below. Lindsey and Aaron's 50 person backyard ceremony/reception was everything that a slow summer night full of magic could offer. I was mildly obsessed with the dried floral crowns and bridal bouquet, and the mis-matched bridesmaid floral wrap dresses added the perfect touch of whimsy to the entourage. The details were quaint and carefree - pastel glass votives and lanterns, geometric metal accents, floral paper lanterns and straws, and the sweetest floral covered homemade arbor for the ceremony! The incredible gardens offered by their generous neighbors gave us the enchanted forest vibe that perfectly set the tone for this sweet culmination of an 8 year love story!

 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
 @Jill Gearhart Photography | www.jillgearhartphotography.com
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