Ben Pancoast Photography » Wedding and Portrait photography by Ben Pancoast Photography

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Silhouettes in the Dunes | Engagement Photos by Lake Michigan

Just found these awesome silhouette engagement photos we did last year while digging through my computer for something else… I loved this engagement shoot! We were way out in the dunes in Grand Mere Michigan with all this camping gear and ended up shooting all sorts of stuff in the dark! We actually hiked out there just before the sun began to set and set up a whole bunch of different pictures but these are a few of my favorites! There’s just something fun about a beautiful silhouette! I wish I could take credit for the cool props but that was the brides idea… she’s another photographer (an awesome one) and she’s just really creative like that! It’s always great when a couple brings their own ideas to

Engagement Photos in the Dunes in Michigan
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Engagement Photos Camping in Michigan

a shoot and we can go to a location that other people have been to and still find a way to make the shot personal! It doesn’t always take a whole lot of thought or creativity either, just tie the locations to places that mean something to you, or incorporate an activity that you love, or come up with your own twist on a shot or location you love! The more fun you have with it the better the pictures will be! Oh but a word to the wise… if you’re going to bring a ton of camping gear out into the middle of the dunes and build a camp fire, and then hike back in total darkness… bring extra help, preferably someone really strong who doesn’t mind climbing giant sand hills blind while carrying rope, sleeping bags, lanterns, firewood, an axe, coffee mugs, and… I can’t remember all the other stuff we brought!! Thank goodness for Uncle Danny!

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Paper Sky Lanterns at Your Wedding Reception

One of the wedding trends we saw a lot more of this past year were Paper Lanterns being lit and set off after wedding receptions. While it’s obviously a breath taking thing to behold, especially if you’ve never witnessed dozens of paper lanterns drifting up the into the night there are a couple of very important things to keep in mind. First, these things are weather dependent!! They just won’t fill with hot air if there’s much more than a gentle breeze so be prepared to scratch the idea if the weather isn’t

Sky Lantern Wedding Photos
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Paper Lantern Wedding Reception
Wedding Lantern
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Paper Sky lanterns

co-operating. Second they are a FIRE HAZARD!!! Check which way the wind is blowing and be considerate, no one wants a flaming lantern to land on a building or get caught in a tree like they did at this wedding reception! =) Also, be sure to check with the venue where you’re getting married if you want to set these things off, some venue’s will allow it while others do not or simply cannot due to certain town/county restrictions. Finally, remember these things end up in other peoples back yards, in farm fields, and in lakes, there are sky lanterns that are completely biodegradable and then there are those that aren’t if at all possible, try to find sky lanterns that won’t cause a problem down the road for someone else! Obviously if everything works out like it did at this Willow Harbor Wedding you’re going to have a great time and we’re going to capture some incredible pictures but you might want to come prepared with a back up plan like sparklers… Just in Case!! =)

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Winter Engagement Photos in an Apple Orchard

This is one of my favorite shots from Brent & Amanda’s winter engagement shoot which we shot in an apple orchard of all places! Talk about a beautiful location for some winter photos, we certainly got lucky having some of the apples and leaves still on the trees! I can’t wait to post more from this fun portrait session on the farm! A couple quick tips for those of you considering a winter engagement session: look for colorful locations, prioritize your favorite spots first, warm up frequently, and a cute coat goes a long way in making any winter session a success!

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  • March 18, 2014 - 4:15 am

    Winter Engagement Photos | Chicago IL - […] Winter engagement sessions can be a lot of fun, but when you have a winter as cold and brutal as the one we’ve had in Chicago this year it makes it a bit of a challenge to find that “perfect time” to take your engagement photos. Some times you just have to GO FOR IT, and thats exactly what Bryan & Stephani did, we braved the frigid temperatures and brutal lakefront wind chill, and ended up with some beautiful pictures… and ok maybe a little frost bite? But hey it was for a great cause and in the end it just makes it all that much more memorable! […]

Winter Engagement Photos | Chicago IL

Winter engagement sessions can be a lot of fun, but when you have a winter as cold and brutal as the one we’ve had in Chicago this year it makes it a bit of a challenge to find that “perfect time” to take your engagement photos. Some times you just have to GO FOR IT, and thats exactly what Bryan & Stephani did, we braved the frigid temperatures and brutal lakefront wind chill, and ended up with some beautiful pictures… and ok maybe a little frost bite? But hey it was for a great cause and in the end it just makes it all that much more memorable!

Winter Engagement photos in Millenium Park, Chicago IL
Winter Engagment Pictures in Chicago
Winter engagement Photos at the Art Institute of Chicago
Union Station engagement Photos
Engagement Photos on the River Walk.
The chicago Skyline in winter makes for cold engagement photos.

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  • March 18, 2014 - 4:14 am

    Winter Engagement Photos in an Apple Orchard - […] more from this fun portrait session on the farm! A couple quick tips for those of you considering a winter engagement session: look for colorful locations, prioritize your favorite spots first, warm up frequently, and a cute […]

Shooting Portraits at the Studio

A couple quick tips for getting great shots of little kids at the studio. First, timing is everything, it’s best to schedule your pictures for a time when your kids aren’t normally hungry or tired. You know your kids best and we’re flexible so we will rely on you for what time you think will work best. Once here it helps to HAVE HELP!! An extra set of hands goes a long way when you’re trying to photograph more than one child,

Portrait Photography in Saint Joseph Michigan
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Saint Joseph Michigan, Portrait Photography
Saint Joseph Michigan Childrens Portraits
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especially if the kids are mobil and love to explore new places. Finally we’re not above bribery, bring snacks, a favorite toy, or some sort of noise maker you think might help grab your childs attention at a key moment for a picture. Of course the best laid plans rarely go as planned so be prepared for that possibility as well and rest assured, if we need to reschedule we certainly can! =)

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  • March 20, 2014 - 5:12 am

    Stella 3mo Baby Pictures in the Studio - […] a couple of our favorites from Stella’s 3mo photo session in the studio. What a beautiful little girl! The trick to catching great shots like these is timing. It’s […]