Hi there! We're Luke and Cat, and we're so happy you're here. We hope you'll stay a while! We’re a husband and wife wedding photographer team based in Houston, Texas. Ranchers-turned-photographers, our world looks like this: a Craftsman-style farmhouse; our newborn, Knox, in our arms; coffee in the kitchen; Edison lights on the back porch; and a pair of English bulldogs at the foot of our bed. Read more...
 
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We (Almost) Lost Our Own Wedding Photos

Our Favorite Online Proofing System

Nov 21, 2017 / Business

The other day, a post from 2011 showed up as my Facebook “On This Day” memory:



It’s been six years, but it seems like forever ago that we had four floor-to-ceiling cabinets full of discs with our clients’ images on them.  Here we are in 2017 with four different computers instead. And guess what -- not a single one of them even has a disc drive! Those discs of 2011 are on the same path as my Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood cassettes: dust-collecting relics.

When we got married in 2009, own digital files were delivered via disc along with our printed wedding album. Five years later, when we were redesigning our website, I pulled out our disc of images to look for a photo for our “About Us” page. This is when the unthinkable happened…the disc had an error. We had heard of disc failure, but it happened to us, with our precious wedding day images! Fortunately, we had a physical album and Luke had a backup on his computer. 

But what if the same thing happened to our clients? What if they weren’t financially able to order all of the prints they wanted at the time of their wedding? What if they needed to replace their images after a tragedy like a fire or a flood? What if our software was obsolete by the time they wanted more prints? What if we ran out of space to store all of these discs? (We live in a circa 1900 farmhouse) that we love for its Craftsman-style details but loathe for its lack of storage – how long could we devote an entire bedroom to disc storage?)



We started searching for an online gallery that would eliminate these worries. I don’t know how many we tried, but I know that I can’t count them on one hand. The absolute best we found is Pixieset. There are dozens of reasons we consider this to be the most convenient and reliable online gallery, (and we’ll detail them in future posts), but our absolute favorite feature is how it beautifully showcases our images. For example, once we settle on a cover image, we can set it as a default without ever having to set it again. Pixieset even resizes images to fit on a variety of platforms including mobile devices and social media. This means, our clients can easily share our images with built-in quality control.

Other features we love (and we’ll talk about in detail soon) include the ability to have:

  • a customized URL (example gallery.yourphotobusinessname. com)
  • a customized online store
  • customized image download sizes (requiring PINs)
  • customized default settings for image categories, price lists, cover images, and more
  • specific images set as 'private'
  • clients place their orders directly via the online gallery

 

 







Best of all, Pixieset will store all of the images and the albums you upload as long as you are a paying subscriber. Or, if you prefer, you can set your own expiration date (in which case, the images can still remain ‘hidden’, but safe on the Amazon-hosted cloud.)

If you are still using discs or USBs and are looking for an online proofing and file delivery system that is at once sleek and sophisticated, yet super easy-to-use, take a look at our favorite, Pixieset

Landlines and Cassettes
(technology changes fast)

Luke & Cat

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Love & Coffee #4

A list of this week’s ‘loves’ made over Monday morning coffee

Nov 20, 2017 / Our Life

ABOUT THIS SERIES: Besides being the signature to Luke’s email, this blog series features the things we’re loving as we start each Monday morning with gratitude and coffee!

View previous editions here:
Love & Coffee #1
Love & Coffee #2
Love & Coffee #3

Here’s what we’re discussing over our morning coffee on this week!



  • Post Workshop Exhaustion Syndrome. We hosted our first workshop in over a year last week, and as anyone who hosts workshops can tell you, PWES is a real thing. Post Workshop Exhaustion Syndrome hit us all hard on Thursday and we're still recovering. We both have colds and sore throats and we're just trying to essential oil our way through it and keep baby Knox from catching the illness! Luke's mom and sister flew down from Indiana to help us put on the workshop, so I think PWES may be sweeping through the midwest as well!
  • Just hear those sleigh bells. We haven't put up our tree yet, but we did decorate our mantle for Christmas over the weekend. One of the best moments of parenthood so far? Hanging Knox's stocking for the first time using Cat's great grandpa's red hammer. 
  • Baby's first laugh. Other people have heard it, but we still haven't gotten to hear that first giggle from Knox. What the heck! We're around him the most of anybody. I guess he just doesn't find his boring ol' parents that funny.
  • Cereal and Carrots and Sweet Potatoes, Oh My! We started Knox on solids this week. So far, we've had cereal and carrots. I did a lot of research on whether we even wanted to feed cereal or not, but we ultimately settled on this oatmeal and Knox loves it! He had his first taste of vegetables this morning with carrots and although the first couple of bites made him make some funny faces, I think they gave him a ton of energy! He was shrieking with delight! In 3 days, we get to add some sweet potatoes to the mix, just in time for Thanksgiving.
  • Thanksgiving Cooking. We'll be hunkering down in the kitchen starting tomorrow to prep dishes for our family Thanksgiving. Luke's the main chef in our house, although I (Cat) am pretty proud of my dessert making skills. We have a few dishes left to be determined, but I'm most looking forward to carb loading on Luke's famous yeast rolls. He also makes a dish that is a staple in his family but something we had never heard of on a holiday table until Luke joined us: chicken and noodles. 

 

Have a fantastic week!

Love & Coffee,
(In our well-used Anthro chipped L&C mugs this morning!)

Luke & Cat

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Weekend Snapshot

The Hands Have It

Nov 17, 2017 / Weekend Snapshot

ABOUT THE WEEKEND SNAPSHOT SERIES: It’s our weekend ritual. Every Friday before shooting a wedding, we spend a few hours feasting on inspiration: glossy magazine spreads, favorite Instagram feeds, wedding site editorials, ads for luxury brands, Sprinkles’ cupcake window displays…. It ensures we arrive at every wedding fueled by fresh ideas. Now, we’re bringing a delicious bite of inspiration to you. Start your wedding weekend with a Luke & Cat Weekend Snapshot. The icing on the cake? The hands-on, how-to advice that accompanies each photo. Sweet.

View others in this series:

Weekend Snapshot #1 Bookend Those Bridesmaids
Weekend Snapshot #2 At The Reception
Weekend Snapshot #3 Best of Both Worlds
Weekend Snapshot #4 A Classic Toast
Weekend Snapshot #5 Our Favorite Ring Shot Backdrop
Weekend Snapshot #6 Genuine Smiles

The Hands Have It

Look away from the cake...we know it’s hard! Today’s Weekend Snapshot is about where to focus instead to get the best cake-cutting photos for your wedding clients.

During the cake cutting, one of the photos we make sure to take features the bride and grooms’ hands as the focal point. If you frame the image where you can also see the cake, you get a gorgeous horizontal image that has a great chance of being featured in the cake baker’s marketing. Vendors are always looking for professional-quality photos of their products ‘in action’ on the wedding day!



Love & Cake
(two essential elements for a perfect wedding reception),

Luke & Cat

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