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Behind the Scenes of STNT with Summer Watkins

We sat down with photographer and Collection member Lori Paladino to get her personal take on the workshop, Shoot This Not That. Thanks again for sharing your best-of with us, Lori! What were your expectations going into the workshop? Why did STNT appeal to you in the first place? As a follower of Grey Likes Weddings, I was really excited to meet Summer and hear her take on what editors are looking for in submissions. I'm very happy to have had weddings of mine published, and each time, the benefits of that additional exposure has been wonderful. Finding the time to actually submit weddings is a factor for me.  I was hoping that the STNT workshop would provide that "kick in the pants" I needed to refocus. I want to really make sure the effort I put into submitting is well-informed.

On another note, I was really excited to photograph a shoot styled by Summer! The wedding day moves so quickly, and often times, we have to rush through capturing all the details. I knew Summer would put together a beautiful shoot. We had the luxury of time to capture all the nuances of the space, details and the couple. And who could resist being wined and dined by such amazing members of The Collection including Scribe Winery, Barbara Llewellen Catering and Angele in Napa. We were seriously spoiled!

To what degree did Summer's voice influence your approach to shooting post-workshop? Summer was awesome!!! She was a great speaker— funny, insightful and she has a wonderful gift of cutting through the clutter! Her advice and feedback was clear and easy to immediately incorporate into my shooting approach.

The group dynamic is key at these things. How did everyone get along and collaborate? We had such a great group of photographers— all talented, fun and incredibly friendly. Everyone was excited to be there and ready to test out all the great insight and advice. Summer did a wonderful job of giving us each time to be creative and photograph the different elements of the day, and she also provided awesome 1-on-1 feedback.

What fresh knowledge did you takeaway from STNT? Honestly, there were so many bits of great information and insights, I was blown away. I felt like I gained an entirely new perspective through the STNT workshop. One of my favorites was the permission Summer gave us to move things around while shooting details. It's often daunting to approach some of the details of a wedding day, especially ones that other vendors have so carefully crafted and placed. Many of us are photojournalists at heart. We observe and capture much more than insert ourselves into the wedding day. But capturing the essence of a beautiful detail means clearing away clutter and shooting it in natural light. It may seem small, but that permission alone created a complete shift in my approach and really opened up so many possibilities for capturing beautiful images.

Lastly, will you share the highlight of the entire experience with us? The whole workshop was so enjoyable, from Summer's insights and feedback, to photographing the styled shoot and meeting the other photographers. I have to say, my favorite part was actually editing the images and seeing how small but meaningful adjustments to approaching the shoot really made a difference.  It's so empowering to gather great information and then practice it right away. Seeing immediate results was perhaps the most gratifying part!

{Day 1: photography by Lori Paladino, wardrobe & event styling by Summer Watkins, beauty by Audrey Crandell & Stella Stevens, shot on location at Scribe Winery, bride's dress by Ivy & Aster courtesy of Lovely Bridal, vintage furniture courtesy of One True Love Vintage Rentals, linens by La Tavola Linen, flowers by La Fleuriste, Cake created by Inticing Creations, paper designs by MaeMae Paperie, homemade bread by Sonoma local Mike the Baker, catered dinner by Barbara Llewellyn Catering perfectly paired with Scribe Wine. Day 2: brunch at Angele Restaurant & Bar in Napa, flowers by Maki of Viola Floral Design}

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Reader Comments (3)

ooh Lori, these are beautiful! And I love reading about STNT through your experience:)

June 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah Zoe

Such helpful insight - thank you!!

June 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMegan Clouse

I prefer to read a blog, plain and simple. Unless it’s a podcast or internet radio show that is interviewing a favorite blogger. -designer pens box

July 5, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterdives

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