Hi, we're Hunter and Sarah, a husband-and-wife, luxury wedding photography team. We’re also educators, helping other photographers build profitable and sustainable photography businesses.
Living in a college town, there’s just something so incredibly special about the fall: students returning in droves, the heat of summer finally breaking into cool crisp weather, the leaves beginning to change on the Lawn, and of course another painful season of UVA football…
But something else that’s special about the Fall here in Charlottesville is the potential for photoshoots. Although Fall is a beautiful time for weddings, engagements and senior portraits, we’ve found a theme the last three years: house photoshoots.
As Autumn approaches Mr. Jefferson’s University, year after year we have been consistently approached by groups of girls who live together as UVA students wanting photoshoots of them and their housemates. So, this is where we’ve found ourselves many a Fall afternoon.
Maybe it’s the potential for great photos playing in the leaves. Maybe it’s the crispness in the air allowing the young ladies to show off their newest fall outfits. Maybe it’s the perfectly soft light that comes with overcast days. Maybe it’s just the Instagram potential that comes with professional photos of the “crew” all together on the Lawn or at a local park.
Whatever it is that keeps drawing these young ladies back for photoshoots, we’re grateful for it. It continues to bring us energy to work with students, and it brings a smile to our faces to see the bonds that these groups share, their plethora of inside jokes, and the hilarious ways that they express their friendships to each other.
We also understand that there’s a strategic nature to getting the photoshoot done in the Fall – of capturing those memories while they’re still living together, still sharing life together, still being each other’s closest friends. Sarah and I remember all too well from our time as university students that Spring always comes before we’re ready, and these ladies seem to know that too.
On one occasion, we were fortunate enough to photograph a group of girls from a Chi Alpha house – not a sorority house but a house called “The Chateau” filled with girls from Chi Alpha Christian Fellowship. We spent an afternoon at Pen Park getting group photos, a variety of couples and trios, and even some individual shots. We happened to be at the park during peak foliage, and it resulted in some truly stunning photos, including my all-time favorite Fall photo featuring the orange-as-fire tree.
The Chateau hired us again the following year for their fall photoshoot and, even though some girls had moved out and others had taken their place, the experience was no less memorable. This time we tried a new location across town with no less wonderful results. It was great getting to see some of the same faces, and getting to know new ones as well. Both years the girls had fantastic times with the shoots, and the final results yielded more candid photos of them having fun than we’ve ever seen before.
As it always does, these Falls came to an end, and Winters came and went. When the Spring came around each year following these Fall shoots, several of these girls reached out about photographing their graduation shoots, and we were even fortunate enough to go on to shoot one of their weddings. As September is finally here, we’re looking forward to the new and returning faces that we’ll encounter during Fall shoots in 2017.