Pet Friendly Hotels | Columbus, OH

Happy Thursday to my favorites!

There is a huge demand for animals participating in weddings, but in Columbus, the dog laws are a bit strict and don’t necessarily accommodate our furry friends.  That’s why I’ve compiled a list of pet-friendly hotels that will allow your pets to be a part of your wedding day, even if it’s just the “getting ready” part!

1) Hotel LeVeque is a 5 star hotel at an average rate of $229/night. I’ve personally been to the tower (which is partially residential as well!) and it’s STUNNING and worth every single penny, even just for the photography opportunity for you and your pet! Check it out for yourself!

 

https://autograph-hotels.marriott.com/hotel/hotel-leveque/

2) Drury Inn & Suites Columbus Convention is also downtown and accommodates pups. It is a 3 star hotel, meaning it’s a bit more affordable and in a friendly price range. Average cost per night is $150!

 

https://www.druryhotels.com/locations/columbus-oh/drury-inn-and-suites-columbus-convention-center

3) Hilton Downtown Columbus is one of my all-time favorite hotels in the city, not only because they’re pet friendly, but because the Gallerie Bar and Bistro is one of my ALL TIME favorite restaurants in the city! Bill, the executive chef there, has an incredible menu and is sure to have you leaving with a full and happy belly. If you’re into sharing your human with your furry loved one, they’ll leave just as happy!

 

http://www3.hilton.com/en/hotels/ohio/hilton-columbus-downtown-CMHDWHH/index.html

4) Hampton Inn and Suites downtown also accommodates pets for a fair price of $150/night and is centrally located in the middle of Columbus! The reviews of this hotel are 4.5/5 and you can tell the staff here strives to make their guests leave happy and have a superb experience. Check it out for yourself!

Who is Whitney Brewer?

Lately, I've been thinking about "my brand" and what it means to myself AND my clients. I want to attract like-minded individuals as my future clients AND keep the amazing clients that I have already!

So, who IS Whitney Brewer? What is her brand? Who is she trying attract? What is she trying to accomplish through her photography business? What sets her apart from other photographers?

I come from a family of mechanics, cooks, bakers, business owners, music-lovers and life-livers (note the well-roundedness!)! I started my business in 2016 with a bit of encouragement to quit working for “the man” and in turn, follow my dreams! After all, life is really short. We don’t have much time on this planet to actually live life, so I grabbed life by the balls and made moves to be genuinely happy!

My brand?

Well, I feel as though I’m aiming to focus on what makes me happy and run with it. I don’t want to be someone I’m not in this industry, trying to compete for the ideal client that will pay me thousands of dollars per session to photograph something special. Instead, my brand represents myself and my interests, which include traveling, my Harley, my dog and focusing on PMA (Positive Mental Attitude). With these passions, I plan on attracting my ideal client by sharing similar interests and in turn, creating memorable and meaningful relationships with them outside of photography!

 As far as the word “success” goes, simply creating amazing and meaningful relationships through this business means more than anything. My definition of “happiness” is doing what you love all the time with the people you love most! Making people feel good makes ME feel good!

What sets me apart from other photographers? Well, A LOT! I studied photography and through this business, I’ve discovered that a lot of photographers are self-taught! Not saying that’s a bad thing, I’m just different! I feel I have a trained eye that it takes to be a professional photographer and am able to capture moments that some artists/photographers take for granted. Although I’ve studied the art of photography, I tend to lean more towards the “avant garde” style of it all. (Avant Garde meaning “new and unusual or experimental ideas, especially in the arts, or the people introducing them”)

Last week, I had an opportunity (a break in the weather) to snag some headshots that represent my “brand”…but let’s be honest. We’ll save most of them for my next blog! For now, here’s a little snippet of "professional me"!

Retouching | Before + After

Happy 2017, everyone! Cheers to a fresh new start in the new year. I know some of us have goals and resolutions that we hope to stick to this year...I am sending out my good vibes and positivity that we can all attain them, especially if they're simple. (For example, one of my goals for 2017 is to focus more on flossing my teeth. I'm in a terrible habit of not doing it and my dentist is sure to point it out every 6 months! Tired of it, so I'm going to take 30 whole seconds out of my day each day to do it! I even wrote myself a note on my bathroom mirror with a dry-erase marker! I've found that notes help a lot too.)

Today, I'd like to touch base on what retouching looks like in the eyes of a photographer and what the client might miss being "behind the scenes." Each photographer has their own post-processing style, some being bright and bold, others being more "contrasty" and some being a bit more "soft" or "flow-y". Regardless of the style, each photographer all must dive into your hundreds (or even thousands) of images to choose the perfect ones and then retouch them to fit our liking as a photographer. We spend countless amounts of hours staring at a computer screen, sometimes taking longer breaks than we want to because we're constantly looking at a digital screen! There are also times that we must step away from retouching a session because all of the images sort-of run together. Stepping away and coming back refreshed is one of my favorite techniques because my job never gets boring! It's like coming back to a whole new session each time! (I recently had an eye appointment with a new optometrist and he shared with me that my eyes have drastically changed because I switched professions. I told him I quit working for the Starbucks Corporation in June and that I'm a full-time photographer now. He 100% blamed my computer for my change in eyesight! Crazy! Moral of the story, be sure to keep up with your Optometrist! An updated prescription can make a ton of difference and your eye health is SO important! Take care of them eyeballs!!!)

Okay, so back to the actual action of retouching. What is retouching, you ask?! Well, to put it simply, it's (for me) finding all ranges of the images' tones and then applying those tones to be 100% true. 100% blacks, whites and middle grays. I prefer Adobe Lightroom over Photoshop. I was taught how to use Lightroom in college and I feel that it is a program that respects the actual idea of the "truth" in photography. In contrast, Photoshop allows the user to completely turn an image into a lie, and to me, that's not photography. Photography is TRUTH. Photography captures "facts". Actions in Photoshop, I think, allow the photographer to completely change an image into what it is not.

As a Professional Photographer, I get asked frequently after MANY sessions if I could slim faces, hips, waists and other body parts while in my post-processing mode. My answer is always going to be NO. I studied photography as an art in college. I learned the truth of this medium and that's why I love it. I refuse to change my style due to clients not wanting to accept the "truth" about their images. If you want your body parts fixed/retouched in post-processing, I hate to say this, but it's the truth and I back it up...I am NOT the photographer for you! If you want raw, real and truthful images...moments captured that other photographers aren't focused on, I'm your girl! The truth is such a beautiful thing!!!! 

 

Styling Guide for Whitney Brewer Photo!

I usually only blog Wednesdays and Saturdays, but consider today a treat! I've been at my desk since about 9am working diligently to get this out to my viewers and potential clients! I am excited to announce that I am going to release some juicy content for you all regarding how to dress yourselves when you come to get photographed by Whitney Brewer Photography! It's a little in depth, but totally worth the read. It's informative in both the DO's and DON'Ts...and the best part about all of this information is YOUR feedback! Yes, that's right! I want your feedback! Is this information clear? Mean? Too straight forward? Gentle? Informative? Too much? Too little? You guys are what makes my business so magical. If it weren't for you all, I wouldn't be here, so your input is just as important as my blogging!!!!

Here we go friends. Whitney Brewer Photography's version of "What Not to Wear"!

 

Whitney Brewer Photography Style Guide

 

Coordinate, but don’t match.

When styling a photo session, I like to start out with a basic color palette and go from there. It can aid to have one “star of the show” in the images who wears a pattern in their outfit that the rest of the group’s clothing or accessories pulls from, while keeping everyone else’s outfits more simple! You can do this with a neutral and a few bright colors (stay away from NEONS!), or you can also try a softer color palette that has different tonal ranges of the same shade. It tends to be easier to find the “center stage” pieces in the female’s clothing, so I will often start with the girls and then pull colors from their outfits to create a look for the guys!  Choose clothing that will be timeless!
 

Accessorize

…with accessories, try to think outside the box! Hats, scarves, jewelry, vests, jackets, flowers for the ladies, sweaters, etc…all of these things can really tie an image together. However, don’t let these accessories overwhelm the subject or images! I feel as though babies and children don’t really need any (or much!) accessories, as they are beautiful in their simplicity.  I’d rather have the kids be the star of the show, rather than the bow on their head and the big bucket that they sit on. I want the viewer to focus on the subject, not the props! Choose your accent colors and fill in outfits with those punches of color in accessories. For example, if big sister’s patterned dress has tones of aqua, coral and gray, have mom wear a coral headband and little brother in a aqua pair of converse and a bow tie. Show of the kids’ and your unique personality with accessories! The nice thing about accessories is that you can change them up during the session without having to do many wardrobe changes. They can also be something that the subjects interact with. A little sassy tip of the hat, grabbing the lapels of the hubby’s jacket while pulling him close for a kiss…these are all examples of using accessories at their finest!
 

Layers and textures

These two features are stunning and create interest in images. I love using multiple textures and layers, especially important when working with a color palette a bit on the soft/neutral side. When I say textures, I mean using tweed, crochet, embroidery details, lace, hand-knit items, smocking, ribbons and ruffles, etc. Having layers can add dimension to the overall texture of the image. These two details especially add depth and contrast in black and white images. Follow your own vision and style, also looking to what fits your subject best!    
 

Subtle props

Keep them simple, yet meaningful…something that can blend with the vibe of the session. A bunch of natural and neutral flowers that coordinate with outfits, a vintage camera, basket of apples, or a prop that is meaningful to the subject! Don’t let the prop be an odd distraction, make sure it “makes sense” being in the image and blends well with the whole vision you had in mind for the shoot.
 

Shoes matter!

Please do not wear sneakers-unless we’re talking about some funky converse that go with the feel of the session. The choice of shoes can make or break a session. A pair of hip boots or some colorful flats can tie everything together in an image.  For instance, if Mom is wearing a bright blue scarf, daughter can wear bright blue flats to complete the amazing vision! It ties everything together without looking to matchy-matchy. Believe it or not, many times, NO shoes at all look best! Don’t forget socks! You can get crazy fun with them; they are just another accessory!
 

Kids

When photographing children, especially in wide-open spaces, I tend to enjoy lose and free flowing clothing. Little ones love to jump around and play and I feel as though this type of clothing allows them to really be “themselves” in a session. A super hero cape can be fun for the boys and soft, flow-y dresses are fun for the babes!
 

Be comfortable!

Make sure the little ones are comfortable in their outfits and that they are not going to be pulling at their new clothes. We all want them happy and comfortable, it makes for the best images! (This means letting them have a small say in what they want to wear!) I promise you won’t regret this. Their personalities will shine in the images! Try to avoid having the children change into multiple outfits. Layers will be your best friend in this case. The same rules apply for all of the people in the shoot! Everyone should be comfortable and relaxed!
 

Patterns

These are always great, but in moderation! Patterns provide texture, interest and show a bit of personality as well! Please be sure that you are only allowing ONE person in the session to wear patterns. Otherwise, the image could get really busy and we want to stay away from that.
 

Location

Make sure that your outfit choices will not clash with your shoot location! It is very important to make sure that your clothing will compliment your surroundings. For example; if your session is booked at a rustic barn, it would be perfect to have your little girl in a sundress or vintage dress with a pail of wildflowers and pigtails. This same look might look weird with a graffiti wall in the background. Also consider how well the colors and patterns in the wardrobe might look against the background of your images. I tell all of my clients to stay away from green during the summer months because most likely, the background will also be green. Many times, I will select the location first and then create the wardrobe, accessorize and then find props to fit appropriately.
 

How are your images being displayed?

Think about the primary reason that you are doing the session and dress accordingly! For instance, if you’re going for a Christmas look, wear clothing that reminds you of the season. It’s more of a personal choice here, but I really enjoy clothing that never ages. You don’t want to look back on your images 5 years down the road from now and think “wow,  that outfit is so 5 years ago!”  Although I tend to stick toward neutral tones, brights are okay in some occasions. As long as the colors aren’t obnoxious and they don’t take away from the actual subject, I don’t mind a pop of brights.
 

*If you are unsure of what to wear and want the photographer’s input, please don’t ever hesitate to send photos via text or email! I am here to help you look the best you possibly can!

 

The DONTs

1) If at all possible, please avoid:

Logos
Graphics
Characters
Labels
Neons

2) If you are planning on getting haircuts, please cut ONE WEEK prior to the shoot. If you cut it any sooner, the hair may look unnatural.

3) Please refrain from making everyone wear the same color. Matching is boring and dated! Also, please no families in all khaki or jeans and white shirts.

4) Don’t wear pony tails around wrists or anything that is distracting in an image. Do not wear anything that will clash with the vibe of the session.

 

 

 

Chasin' dreams...

Hey friends! Hope you're having a great week. Happy Hump Day!

This past weekend I got lost in friends and family. On Saturday, I gathered up my dad, my best friends (Samantha and Rory...they're pictured below!) and my comfy clothes to jump out of a perfectly good airplane in Xenia, OH. It's been a dream of mine since I was a little girl and I was so excited to finally be doing it.  The weather was smoldering hot and muggy until about 4:30pm. All 4 of us were sweating profusely, drops of perspiration descending from our foreheads and eyelashes. We noticed black clouds coming our way so we eagerly checked our radar apps to make sure that jumping was still looking promising. We sat and waited the storm out. Guess what? It never stopped until we were all on our way home to Columbus.

Skip forward to Sunday.

I worked until about 5pm, ate some dinner, geared up and moved my in-laws into our house! It's been a long and exciting week. I consider this a opportunity to get to know my family on a deeper level and I couldn't be happier to have them here with us.  (Plus, I never had a sister until Jason asked me to marry him...I went from zero to 5...inheriting a sister is pretty cool, actually!) Monday we all got a bit more settled in and then Tuesday was my sister-in-law, Ashley's, 31st birthday! Her and I treated ourselves for most of the afternoon and then the boys spoiled her and I at the Hilton downtown for some EPIC dinner! (Scallops, salmon, short rib, pork belly...drools)

Now that I've had some time to sit down and pay attention to my WORK (insert apology for taking a mini vacation. Sorry, y'all!), I had a hard time trying to figure out what to talk about today...but fear no more! I conquered another dream today and I wanted to share it. I've been dreaming about this since college and 5 of my favorite people made my dream become a reality. I really couldn't even thank them enough for this, from the bottom of my heart. (and also the amazing friends that donated this amazing truck and land for us to use for the shoot!!!)

When you think your dreams are just dreams, keep reaching. With a positive attitude, anything is possible!

 

I've been MIA. Here's why.

WHEW! Where to even begin with this one...! First of all, I owe you all an apology for leaving you high and dry for the past few days regarding the blog. Heck, 95% of this weekend, I ignored my phone and focused on things I don't normally get to focus on. Ready for 'em? Girlfriends, bridesmaids, wedding Planning (yep, for Jason and I!), hosting four humans at our house, thrifting, goofing off, sunsets, photoshoots (FOR FUN!!!), accepting a new photography position, motorcycles, bartending...the list could honestly go on and on. I'm just really excited to go into detail about how all of these responsibilities came into play and why they are more important than blogging and/or keeping up on social media.

Girlfriends-two of my favorite girlfriends/bridesmaids came into town this weekend. Katie came up Friday evening from Cinci to enjoy a sunset toast at the Scioto for her Mom. Carrie came Thursday evening from her new home in Charlotte, NC! I always love having my friends in town. It reminds me how lucky I am to have such great people only a phone call away. We all got to catch up (ironically, we all worked together at the same restaurant in college!)

Bridesmaids-I asked Katie (my last and final lady to be a part of our day) to be my bridesmaid. She thankfully said "yes" and I got to see all but one of my ladies this weekend. 3/4 ain't bad! (Shout out to Lesley ((my other bridesmaid!!)) for being on the grind in Chicago working to teach our future generations amazing things! I'm so proud of you!)

Wedding Planning-Yep. It started happening. Jason and I are doing the damn thing.

Hosting Four Guests-Not only were Katie and Carrie here, but we had other friends in town too. Whew. FOUR.

Thrifting-Carrie killed it. She comes up to Columbus and every single time, she makes thrifting happen...like NC doesn't have ANY thrift stores. I tell ya, by hour 2, I was absolutely exhausted. Know the term "drop til ya shop?"...yeah. That applies to me but usually within 30 minutes. I think together we spent almost $300. Ooof.

Goofing off- Self explanatory.

Sunsets- Refer to "Girlfriends" section.

Photoshoots- YES. Next to my friends coming into town, this was probably my favorite part of the weekend. I've had this artistic idea running around in my head like a gerbil wheel for years. Every since time I'd see an old truck, it would remind me of my idea and want it more. Finally, after moving down the street from a man with an old truck, I walk past it frequently and think "wonder if he'd let me borrow his truck!" Time after time, I'd leave a note and he'd never return my calls. Finally, my fiance and I were hanging out with our friends Jason & Gina and a lightbulb went off! They HAD a truck and so I boldly asked "May I use your truck for this idea that I've had for a long time?!" and when I explained in detail, they were more than happy to let me use not only the truck, but their land too! HOW GRACIOUS! (See samples below!)

BIG NEWS ALERT!!!!! I accepted a photography position working for the Ohio State University Wexner Center (their art gallery!)!!!!! I am so excited to be a part of this opportunity!!!!

Motorcycles-I rode my bike more this past weekend than I have the ENTIRE SUMMER. I am the happiest person on Earth!

Bartending- I'm a bartender/employee at the Haus Frau (German Housewife) Haven in German Village, OH on Saturdays and Sundays. Saturday, I got to serve/talk vino with my friends from out of town before heading out to celebrate their arrival for the weekend! Sunday, I rode my motorcycle to Haus Frau. Monday, I ran around Columbus like an idiot catching up from all the things I didn't get done this weekend around the house. Tuesday, I worked on the blog and caught up on some social media. Today is the day I want to share this!

Check the images out from my fun weekend!!!