Epic Wedding Photo # 6 – Ok, I love trees. I really, really love trees. In fact, I married my wife Molly under a beautiful sprawling tree in our front yard at our first house. While this will not be last tree shot I share, I promise, the next two epic wedding photos we post will involve great landscapes and NO TREES. There’s a pattern here obviously in my definition of what I think is an epic wedding photo, the subjects are relatively small surrounded by an amazing landscape. There something timeless and soul-nourishing about a beautiful landscape and a pair become one for eternity. So our countdown continues with a shot of Jennifer Bohannon and Patrick Bailey who were married at Dunes West Golf and River Club in Mount Pleasant South Carolina on Sept 1, 2007. This was one of those days plagued by the threat of rain that came and went all day. My two biggest accomplishments that day was first shooting this image under this giant palm tree and second, convincing the club wedding coordinator to bust a move by carrying all 150 white folding wedding chairs from the rainy outdoor location under the plan-B tent. She was reluctant to move the chairs because she did not think there was enough time to move and dry them. She was pushing to move the whole ceremony into the dark, ugly bar room and have people stand around. Yes, it’s true, we only had about 10 minutes to make the move but I convinced her I knew the groom Patrick and his half a dozen groomsmen who would be more than willing to help along with my second photographer and myself. We made the move and the ceremony happened under a big tent, nicely lit and ten times prettier than the club bar room. With a little hustle and a can-do spirit, we all made it work. For more information about our wedding photography contact our studio at http://www.exumphoto.com/wedding-photography/
Epic Wedding Photo # 7 – Our 10 day countdown of epic wedding photos shot by Steve Exum celebrates the marriage of Kristin Felts Weldon and Rob Wells on Sept 8, 2007. Their adventuresome wedding story carried our crew down to Charleston, South Carolina where the live oaks are numerous and some are of epic proportions. I love an outside wedding under the shade of an oak. If you want a lot of shade to get married under a giant 1500 year old oak tree. Kristin and Rob became husband and wife under the sprawling giant limbs of the Middleton Place Angel Oak tree on John’s island. This giant tree is dwarfed by Kristin’s giant heart and her solid relationship with Rob. This wedding was the second Felts wedding for me in 2007. Kimberly Felts Castro another beautiful bride with a soul to match married Marcos Castro just 3 months prior that year. Thank you, Felts, Weldon and Castro families for the high honor to shooting 2 amazing weddings that year. For more info about a great wedding venue check out https://www.middletonplace.org. For more information about our wedding photography contact our studio at http://www.exumphoto.com/wedding-photography/
Epic Wedding Photo # 8 – Our studio countdown of the 10 most epic wedding photos by Steve Exum continues with a shot of Mandy Redwine and her beau Adam Lockner who were married October 11, 2008 on family land covered in Live Oak trees. This land backed up to the Intracoastal waterway near Ocean Isle Beach, NC. While this wedding was 9 years ago, I remember every aspect of that day including the weather and the constant threat of rain with overcast skies. Fortunately it never actually rained at any point that disrupted the outside ceremony. We dodged most of it with the exception of a few moments of drizzle. The challenge for a wedding photographer is that he or she must embrace the conditions, incorporate them into their wedding story and find beauty in it. I choose this image because life will bring challenges and it’s how you handle those challenges that either build cohesion in a marriage or destroys it. Adam and Mandy were unfazed by the weather that day and embraced the concept it is good luck for your marriage if it rains on your wedding day. For more information about our wedding photography contact our studio at http://www.exumphoto.com/wedding-photography/
This is a countdown of the most epic wedding photos shot by Steve Exum …. me! I’ve been shooting weddings for more than 2 decades and pride myself on telling a great story AND capturing a few timeless images that speak to the institution of marriage as something that has always been and always will be. Most of these images will incorporate elements that are as old as mankind, a couple and a beautiful natural landscape … except for this image. Photo #9 in my countdown features Elizabeth Williams & Stephen Johnson who were married outside at Fearrington Village August 18th, 2012 followed by a reception in the barn. So this man-made landscape is the entrance to that barn. I chose black and white for its classic impact. I asked Stephen to pick up Elizabeth and voila, the decisive moment was captured. For more information about our wedding photography contact our studio at http://www.exumphoto.com/wedding-photography/
For the next 10 days, we are going to post one epic wedding photo by Steve Exum from more than 20 years of documenting wedding stories. Many thanks to all my couples for the honor of telling your wedding story. This is a bridal portrait of Megan Kennedy Roberson who married Wesley Roberson at Summerfield Farms in Greensboro, NC. Megan and Wesley exchanged their vows under this old oak tree in June 2016. This series will end with my all time favorite photo of one of my best friends Steve Macomber and his wife Maggie. For more information about our wedding photography contact our studio at http://www.exumphoto.com/wedding-photography/
Our 2017 Christmas card features conceptual studio photography with a heavy dose of Photoshop work to make our holiday family greeting card a success. Inspired by the incredible commercial success of the movie Elf, we created a storybook out of images that illustrate Buddy the Elf’s four creative ideas for celebrating the holiday with his dad: “Make Snow Angles for 2 hours, Go ice skating, eat a whole roll of toll house cookie dough as fast as we can and to finish, snuggle” I have to say this was the Exum Family’s most collaborative effort yet. Everyone loves Elf so everyone was on board. The behind the scenes video of me greeting shoppers in my Buddy the Elf costume is priceless. It’s a short film worth watching. Our team at Exum Photography wishes you peace, joy and prosperity throughout the coming year. Thank you for your continued support and friendship. We hope you enjoy the Exum Family Christmas card of 2017!
Watch hilarious behind the scenes of this years Christmas Card with Buddy!
Carolina Eye Prosthetics based in Burlington, North Carolina shares a passion for making one-of-a-kind prosthetic eyes. A custom made eyeball is functional art so it only made sense to capture this creative process with a memorable Christmas card marketing piece to help promote their brand. The conceptional photograph of the staff dressed as elves crafting eyes in Santa’s workshop was the brainchild of sisters Anna, Clare, and Emma. The team at Exum Photography created this image for a direct mail card that was sent out to nearly 1000 eye doctors in the southeast. Eye doctors are a major source of patient referral for Carolina Eye Prosthetics. Consider the visual expertise of Exum Photography for your next creative marketing effort.
While counting our blessings this Thanksgiving, we here at Exum Photography– in partnership with Fisher Wealth Management– encourage all our friends to consider adopting a new dog or cat from the Pet Adoption Center at the Alamance County Animal Shelter. This is a great way to show some Thanksgiving spirit, because those furry creatures need us as much as we need them! Having an animal companion is clinically proven to help reduce stress- so what better time than over the Thanksgiving holiday to find a stress reducer? Bring a little furry joy into your home when everyone comes together, because there’s always room for a pet at the Thanksgiving table…or under it. The team at Exum Photo and Fisher Wealth Management wish you and your pets safe travels, and a happy holiday weekend! For more information on pet adoption in Alamance County, visit Burlingtonnc.gov/pets or call (336) 578-0343
Seven days before the public release of the Ligier Crawford JS Formula 3 race car, the Exum Photography team – based near Greensboro, North Carolina – had the privilege of shooting this sleek, beautiful, open-wheeled automobile for its official press release. The F3 was designed in California, had its composite body built in Denver, NC and is powered by Honda. Our creative team included head photographer Steve Exum, photo assistant Timur Targay, and myself, Alexander Bernal, as a third photo assistant. Even though I have no interest in cars or racing, getting to see the car a week before the general public was pretty awesome. However, that didn’t diminish the fact that in large product photography, especially car photography, the work is challenging and the hours are long.
We had to arrive at the shoot location – The Decal Source http://www.thedecalsource.com) – in McCleansville, NC – bright and early to unload all the equipment, since we packed everything but the kitchen sink. No joke, Steve had us empty the studio and pack the suburban full. Steve’s motto of “Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it” was in full swing that day. This was my first location shoot where practically all of the studio’s gear was used, so I was curious and excited to see why it required so much equipment – until it dawned on me that I was going to have to put it all back the next morning. Figuring out good lighting for the race car was our first challenge. The interior of the Decal Source bay had colorful reflective stripes on the floor that had to be covered up. The F3 itself was highly reflective, so it was necessary for us to turn off all of the ceiling lights and shoot under about 9 different flash strobes strategically placed all around the car. Steve and Timur had to figure out how to control the certain reflections on surfaces while enhancing others.
Once all of the heavy, heavy, heavy gear was unloaded the F3 was rolled in and parked on top of seamless gray background paper. As someone who views cars simply as a method of getting from point A to point B without taking a week to walk the distance, the car certainly impressed me. Its body was sleek and look very aerodynamic. The tires, strangely free of grooves, were wider than any I’d ever seen on a car. I guess it’s a good thing I was impressed by it all because I got to spend a good portion of my day making sure the car was sparkly clean between shots. Every time we completed an angle, the car had to be moved and every time the car moved, the tires accumulated dust and grit. While Steve and Timur adjusted lighting for the next shot, I cleaned and polished the tires, dusted the chassis, aligned the steering wheel and safety harness straps, and checked to make sure the logo on the front wheels were perfectly symmetrical with the logo on the back wheels. If the logo on one wheel was even slightly misaligned, we all had to work together to lift that wheel off the ground and spin it until it was in the correct position. Turns out I much prefer lifting the studio equipment over lifting a car. Lift with your legs, not your back! At one point I played mechanic under the car, wiping mud off the underside of the chassis. Definitely not what I thought I’d be doing that day, but by now I should know that every day is something different at Exum Photography!
One of the most interesting aspects of automotive photography is that the car wasn’t 100% photo ready when the shooting started but it has to be photographed as if it was. For example, the halo around the driver’s seat on the F3 was loose and not bolted into the chassis, so we had to be careful not to touch it, or else we risked scraping up the car. As we were setting up lighting, a separate team was also working quickly to finish putting decals on the car as last minute changes were made to the graphics and logos.
Even though it wasn’t quite ready to peel out of the garage when we were done, that car looked magnificent. I say that the car was beautiful again and again because it was but the irony is that car won’t ever actually participate in a race. Sometime after the public unveiling, it’ll be taken somewhere to be slammed into a wall at very high speeds to test driver safety. It was a little strange, photographing what was basically a doomed-from-the-start car, but it also added to the moment in a way. Now I can say I was one of a select group of people that would ever get as close as I did to the very first Ligier Crawford JS Formula 3 race car – in McCleansville, N.C., no less.
By Alex Bernal, Photographer’s Assistant at Exum Photography
Fisher Wealth Management is a Burlington, NC based financial advisory team lead by Rick Fisher. They manage retirement savings, college savings, investment accounts and more for their clientele. Exum Photography is one their clients and FWM is one of our clients. The Fisher Wealth team is on the Exum Photography Christmas card list receiving our zany Exum family Christmas card every holiday season. Years ago, Rick asked if we would create a custom birthday greeting card they could send to Fisher Wealth clients … something fun and memorable like our holiday cards. With that request, an era of creative birthday greeting card photography began. Our first concept entitled “Hope You Have a Blast!” featured their team crowded around a giant birthday cake with a single sizzling stick of dynamite. The card opened and the dynamite candle had exploded spreading cake innards and frosting all over the staff. The cards have become a unique conversation piece that have helped build rapport between the staff and clients at Fisher Wealth. They help keep their referral business strong with a funny and memorable marketing mailer. After the exploding birthday cake, the next year we created a Happy Days cast, followed by the Rat Pack, then a nod to the movie Saturday Night Fever, The Brady Bunch. Our last card just finished its year of circulation is “Born to Be Wild”. Photography by Steve Exum, Card design by Kelsey Flowers, Costume Design by Steve Exum and Kelsey Flowers. Hair and Make-up by Herita Jones and Jennifer McCollom.