Saturday, May 31, 2008

Hello from St. Louis!

Hey Everybody!
Meredith and I are enjoying a rainy evening in St. Louis tonight. The Westin we're staying in is literally across the street from new Busch Stadium. And even though I have Cubs blood running through my veins, I have to admit that it's a pretty stadium.
Meredith and I are crazy excited for Katy and Mike's wedding tomorrow, and to share the pictures with y'all!
Talk to you soon,

Friday, May 30, 2008

Good news, and more good news...

Hey everyone!

The past few days, I've felt like I could go crazy keeping these bridal portraits a secret! I wish so badly that I could post teasers of the 3 sessions I've done this week! The pictures are rockin'! Also, I found out that one of my bridal sessions is going to be featured in The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette soon! How great is that?!?! She's a wonderful bride, and I can't wait to photograph her wedding very soon!

In more good news, we'd like to congratulate Danielle and Chandler who chose us for their May 30, 2009 wedding! We met them for dinner the other night, and chat, chat, chatted for so long! They're so fun and love a lot of the same stuff as Meredith and me. And get this... he proposed to her at the EIFFEL TOWER!!! You'll have to read more about them after we photograph their engagement and we whip up an engagement website!

Aside from all the bridal shoots, we're also staying completely busy right now... I had a wedding today, we have a newborn session tomorrow (well, I guess that's today as it's 1:21am) and then we drive to St. Louis for Katy and Mike's Saturday wedding. Sunday, we swoop back by Joplin to whisk Ellie off to Disneyworld for a 5 days! I'll definitely post pictures, and I'm also looking forward to hanging out with my sister who lives in Colorado!

Talk to you soon!

P.S. How boring, huh? I post with no photos? Boooooo!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Abby and Chris tie the knot!

Hey Everybody!
I had the wonderful honor of photographing Abby and Chris' wedding this past Saturday that was planned by the ever-incredible Jenessa Bailey!
Abby is the anti-bridezilla! She was so laid back and so fun. I have about 600 candids of her cracking up! Here's the only time during the entire day she wasn't smiling or laughing... ha ha ha...

See, even during their first act as a married couple, communion, they couldn't hold back their happiness...

After the ceremony, they got to see Jenessa's transformation of the Fayetteville Town Center... AMAZING! ...

And went into their first dance... how great is this lighting?! My super low light lens allows me to shoot without a flash to get the great mood lighting...

The Rockets from Little Rock proceeded to rock our socks right off. Here's a shot I like of the saxophone player...

And if I could pick one shot to sum up the day, it would be this one. What a truly happy couple!

Thanks, Abby and Chris! You two are inspiring!

Talk to you soon,

Stephani and Andrew's engagement website...

Hey Everybody!

Below is another custom designed website. But before I give you the link, I wanted to share a couple of my favorite shots with you.

One of the best things about being wedding photographers is photographing engagement sessions. There's just something really special about getting to know a couple and creating lighthearted, intimate images that reflect the personalities of our couples. We're not afraid of spending all afternoon with a couple if it helps capture their unique personalities. I love that the images below show what I mean. It's like you can look at the images, and learn about Stephani and about Andrew.

Over the past couple months, we've come to know Stephani and Andrew really well, and we love them! They're 1/3 funny, 1/3 romantic, and 1/3 laid back, so that's how we wanted to show them in their engagement images.

And now the images:

And without further adieu, their custom designed website. The colors reflect their wedding colors. The style she said she wanted "like our invitations, but a little less formal, a little more fun." I happen to think it's perfect! Enjoy!

Talk to you soon,

Monday, May 26, 2008

Congrats to two new wedding couples...

Congratulations to the latest couples for choosing Benfield Photography to shoot their 2009 weddings:
AJ and Kristin - January 3
James and Lindsay - February 20

We've are reaching our capacity for this year's (2008) weddings. It's important to Meredith and me to not take on too many weddings so that we can focus on quick turnaround times (What... you wanna see your pictures?! What a concept! ha ha...). After Meredith made her graceful exit with Wal-Mart, we were able to take on a few more weddings for '08. And business has been good for us, but we feel like we're again approaching the limit. We're at 33 out of 35 possible weddings currently, so if you have been waiting for no good reason, now is the time to give us a call or email. 2 more, that's it!

For 2009, we're about 1/3 booked for our yearly goal. If you're recently engaged and are planning an '09 wedding, we'd love to meet with you soon and get to know about you and your wedding. Call us at 479-871-2479 or 417-437-9414, or email me at

Have a great day!

Bree's custom engagement site

Hey everybody!
As you probably know, when we do your engagement portraits you get a custom designed website to serve as 1) a great resource for your family, friends, and guests and 2) a great way to show off your images from the engagement shoot.

Here is the latest for the wonderful Bree and Donald. Read all about how they met, how he proposed, etc.

And here are a few others from previous sessions:
Mitch and Maggie's engagement in Paris. Yep, that Paris!
Kara and Jared's engagement in Tulsa
Leah and Brent's engagement in Fayetteville

And check out more on the engagement section of my website

It's also been awhile since I've told you all thank you for continuing to spread the word about Benfield Photography. I really appreciate you all supporting Meredith and me! We wouldn't be where we are without you!

Talk to you soon,

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Mario and Angela tie the knot!

Hey Everyone!
A week ago, Mario and Angela got married in Little Rock. Before the ceremony, they wanted to photograph at the Capitol. This shot, aside from some vignetting and the logo is photoshop-free! Yes, the sky really rocked it out like that!

Oh wait! I forgot this awesome emotional shot taken during their first meeting...

Okay, continuing... she also brought her entourage. That is, wedding party...

And another...

Then we headed back for the cermony...

After the ceremony they wanted to head to the Clinton Library to photograph. We were happy to oblige!

I love this candid from the reception...

Lastly, here's one of my favorite portraits from the day...

Thanks, Angela and Mario, for inviting us to be a part of your incredible day!


It's gonna be a long night...

Hey everybody!
Meredith and I both had weddings today. So, tonight I'm downloading and toning more than the usual. We also have busy weeks coming up with LOTS to blog about. So, stay tuned for lots of great images and terrible writing. Ha ha ha...

Oh, I know I've said many-a-times to subscribe to the blog. But there are different ways to do this and one way is a lot better than all the others... type your email into that box in the top right corner of the blog. What happens is you get my blogs in your emails instead of having to refresh some other type of subscription. It's super easy and super effective.

Now, back to work!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Ellie's Trash the Dress ;)

Hey Everybody!

What a fun day we’ve had! It was supposed to rain all day. That’s obviously bad news, but we decided we’d head down to the beach to play until the rain came. It didn’t come. Even though we had some awesome clouds as our backdrop over the ocean.

Then we felt a couple sprinkles. Aw man! Ellie and I ran up to our room to get dressed for our photo shoot and our kid’s trash the dress session. Ellie was a bit hesitant:

E: Daddy, what’s a trash the dress?
D: It’s something that some of my fun brides do after their wedding (gotta start selling it right away)

E: Why do they call it trash the dress?
D: Well, they call it that because we get some really fun shots, but we’ve got to get our dress dirty and wet.

E: What if my dress gets really dirty?
D: We’ll it’s going to get really dirty. But you’ll be having so much fun, you won’t even care. And besides, we’re totally going to super-clean it and it’ll be like brand new. You know, not all my brides do this. Only the special ones. Do you want to have this special shoot?
E: Yeah!

It was totally worth it! The shots were so fun!

We’re leaving today and have two weddings tomorrow, plus a couple more shoots on Sunday.
Meredith and I are excited to be back at work!

Talk to you soon,

Thursday, May 22, 2008

James and Laura's e-session

Hey Everybody!
James and Laura came up from Little Rock last weekend for a graduation, so we decided it'd be a great time to schedule engagement pictures. We met on the campus of Old Main where we got this shot (note: I've seen lots of pictures of couples with Old Main, but NONE like this!)

Then, we decided we were just going to walk around downtown and photograph. It was so much fun, and such a great workout! ;)
We caught this cool shot with the train going by in the background...

And how about this ring!

Laura has already sent me her website stuff for her custom engagement website, so I won't post any more pictures right now. It was a great shoot though! I look forward to their Little Rock wedding later this year!
Talk to you soon,

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Micah's newborn session...

Hey Everybody!

In the past 6 years, I've photographed Mel's senior pictures, prom pictures, engagement, and wedding. Now, I've photographed her 3 day old boy, Micah. It was funny how it all came about. We had been trying to set up an Urban Belly shoot, but with our crazy schedule, were unsuccessful.

On Mother's Day, I called her to say happy soon to be mother and asked her how her belly was doing. "Well, it's non-existent; I had my baby Friday!" she said. To which I only had one thing to say: "I'll be there tomorrow for the baby's first portraits!" Then we talked for another few minutes about Micah and about how Mel and Mike are doing.

The next morning I was in Joplin, driving to Mel's house for the shoot. I brough my trusty 85mm 1.2 and my 28-70 2.8 on my 5D. We fashioned a little studio and got some great shots of the super-cutie. It was good to see Mel again. I love that I've known her for so long and have been able to watch her grow up in a sense. I look forward to family pictures for years!

Talk to you soon,

Hey Everybody!
As you know I'm on vacation in Gulf Shores. I'm having a blast! It's funny, though, I kinda miss work. That has never happened before when I was teaching... ha ha!
It helps me miss it when I get a note like this in my email (yes, I'm still checking email on vacation, but not as frequently). It's from Lauren and Dusty Mayhall, whose fabulous wedding you can see if you scroll down a bit. She's so sweet!!
Talk to you soon,


Hi Jenessa, Dale and Meredith!

Dusty and I want to thank you SO much for the amazing surprise! The picture you picked out is perfect and will be beautiful in our home! You all have gone above and beyond for us and words cannot begin to describe how grateful we are for everything you've done! Our day was absolutely perfect because of you and that is something that is completely priceless! God truly blessed us by putting you in our lives and we look forward to continuing the great friendships that were made!

OMG...the video was AMAZING! You both, once again, have completely out done yourselves! I couldn't help but cry when I was watching! Dusty says he didn't cry but I swear I saw a few tears welling up in his eyes! It brought back a rush of all the emotions we were feeling that day! Dusty said to tell you thank you and that he loved it as well! Thank you for capturing the many memories and all the fun that we had that day! We will be able to look back 10, 20, 40 years from now and remember the feelings we felt and how blessed we are to have each other! We can't wait to see the rest of the pictures!

Lets all get together for dinner soon! We have a little something for ya'll too!

Dale & Meredith have a blast in Gulf Shores! I went to the blog today and saw your pics! Love them! Tell Ellie she looked SMASHING! in her fancy dinner night attire!!! :)

Talk to you soon!

(more below, keep scrolling)

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Elisha and Daniel's Beach Engagement Session

Hey Everybody!
Mere and I photographed Elisha and Daniel from Memphis, a gorgeous couple who just got engaged Saturday! They were so fun and so in love! We can't wait to get to know them better!

Here are some images from the session:

Monday, May 19, 2008

Greetings from Gulf Shores, Alabama!

Hey Everybody!
What a time we're having! We made the trip via two delayed flights to Gulf Shores and it didn't take long for Mere, Ellie, and me to throw on our swimsuits and head to the beach! After the quick dip, we decided we'd take Ellie to zoom around on some go-karts and bumper boats. Here's a shot Mere took of us...

And here is the sight that greeted us last night after the sun set...

And here's a beautiful picture of Ellie before our fancy dinner tonight...

After that dinner we had Caroline's Fancy Nancy Birthday party...

And here's a shot of the birthday girl chomping some birthday cake...

Hopefully, the rest of the trip is a lot of this:

Talk to you soon!

P.S. Be sure and check the blog tomorrow at noon. I'm posting shots we did of an engagement session Mere and I shot on the beach of Elisha and Daniel!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Travel Day

Hey Everyone!
Ellie, Mere, and I are heading off on vacation today. After the wedding Saturday night, we drove to Joplin (arrived at 2:30 am) and then got Ellie and headed to Tulsa for our 8am flight. How tiring!

Anyway, because we're traveling, I thought I'd post some pictures of a shoot we did with Ellie two weeks ago. There are tons of great ones but I'm only putting a few up here. The reason? My dad reads this blog every day and I'm getting him a picture book of Ellie for Father's Day coming up (surprise, Dad! ha ha)and I know he won't be able to resist printing them out as he always does.

Anyway, next time I write to you it'll be from Gulf Shores, Alabama! I love Orange Beach so much!

Talk to you soon,

Bringing it Urban style

Shadow Dancing

Miss Sassafras

In "Paris"

Saturday, May 17, 2008

This family's got style!

Hey Everyone!
Meredith and I are photographing a wedding in Little Rock today and tonight, but I thought I'd pre-post this for all my loyal viewers out there. By the way, quite of few of you have subscribed to my blog. To that, I sincerely say "Thank You!"
Anyway, this is a shoot I did Sunday of the hilarious Jack and the beautiful Caroline. I met their mother when I was doing some web-catalog work for Monday's Child (see archives for details). Dawn, Duane, and the children were so great to work with. What a beautiful family!!

Check out this gorgeous image. Seriously, this was the very first frame I snapped at the shoot. I could've just stopped the shoot then. Imagine this as a 16x24 canvas hanging on the wall!

But then again, I had to get my man Jack playing a little peekaboo. This image was made with my new favorite lens, the 85mm f/1.2, "Canon's Magic 8 Ball."

And here's an absolutely beautiful shot of Caroline, who takes direction well!

Like I said, what a beautiful family!

After we got our good shots, we started playing around. It was so fun.

And how great were they dressed?! I mean really! This family's got style!

Talk to you soon,

Alaska Proposal; The Time I Almost Blew It.

Hey everybody! Did you ever know something 100% in your heart, but you almost screw it up?  So goes the story of my proposal to Tyler. ...