Today on the blog, I’m giving you the tea on my photography. Hope you enjoy!
Growing up, my mom was CONSTANTLY taking our picture! I have a HUGE baby book, chock full of baby pictures and you should SEE the number of prints (and double prints) my mom has of my sister and I at her house. Nothing went undocumented (think Christmas pictures, Easter dresses, first day of school pics times 17!) We were dressed up like twins (despite being almost 5 years apart….THANKS, MOM!) and we have pictures upon pictures.
Fast forward through life a couple of years until high school. There were no phones, no social media, but I took photography classes! I not only loved the time we got to go out and take pictures (aka not spending time in a classroom), but I was also CONSTANTLY the girl with a camera on hand or in her bag. The point and shoot disposable cameras did me well.
Travel further down the line and I’m going to Italy for the first time. I buy a really “fancy” point and shoot camera to take beautiful pictures (ha!!).
I think you get the point- my pictures haven’t always been beautiful or high quality, but I have always had a love for photography (truly without it even hitting me!).
But then I got married….and our wedding photos had me like “WOW!!”
I was soaking up all things “photo” and truly wanted to take beautiful pictures like my wedding photographer (turned real-life friend) Carly! She was KILLING it and I picked her brain SO MUCH! She was so sweet and answered all my annoying texts…and then my mom bought a big girl DSLR camera and changed the game….
As a self-taught photog, I truly was totally winging it. “Trial and Error” was pretty much the backbone of the beginning of my business. I was SO lucky to have incredible friends that not only asked me to shoot portraits for their family, but paid me (I cringe about it now) to do it. They valued me and my time (and what felt like a lack of talent!). But how grateful I am for the opportunities given to me in the beginning. I didn’t take a SINGLE business class in college. Ha, I just used Turbo Tax when it came to doing my taxes, and I had no idea what “Business Insurance” was. But I was ON FIRE and truly had a hustle attitude. I was DETERMINED to make this new passion turn into a profitable business. I Googled, Youtubed, joined Facebook groups, and shadowed other photographers. I held bags, worked for free, and basically engulfed myself in all things PHOTOGRAPHY!
I love being a photographer as much today as I did the very first year in my business. While my business looks different now than it did back then (thank heavens), it’s still something I am SO EFFING PROUD OF!!! I built this. I took a passion and turned it into a business. I built something from the ground up. I pushed myself to find answers when I felt stuck. I worked two jobs, while also being a mom. I sacrificed sleep to make sure I was hitting deadlines both for my full-time job and the clients I loved dearly. I have missed out on anniversaries, birthdays and countless date nights/girls night outs…but I wouldn’t change it for the world. My children have seen their mom go after her dreams. My children have seen the sacrifice life calls for sometimes. My children have seen me create something for myself and see (hopefully) all the extras we can give them with the income I bring to the table. While I have so many accomplishments I am proud of, these are the ones that mean the most.
So with that being said….2020 is OUR YEAR! This is the year I bring all my knowledge full circle and help YOU! Maybe you don’t want to start a photo business (that’s totally ok!!) but you want better images of your kids, your nieces or nephews, your dogs, your food for your blog….whatever it is, I want to help!! I want to be the person you DM because you can’t seem to get your settings right or find the answer you are looking for in google. Or maybe you are a visual learner and just need someone to show you or walk you through things…I got you boo boo. I’m here for it and I’m here for YOU!
Does your camera feel like a mystery to you? Have no fear! I’ve got you covered, sis. Click here to snag dibs on my photography cheat sheet guide on how to work your camera in all the right ways so that you can start capturing the photos your heart longs for!
Today on the blog, I’m sharing some fun, new things I have in the works for this year. Get ready for a GREAT year, friends!
Today on the blog, I am sharing my three golden rules to goal setting. If you’re a dreamer like me, I hope you find them just as helpful as I did!
2020 is officially HERE and chances are, you’ve already got those 2020 goals piling up in your mind. And maybe, just maybe (if you’re anything like me), you’re taking a good, hard look at the 2019 goals that didn’t get accomplished. Such is LIFE! Am I right or am I right?!
2019 was a hard and beautiful year for me. Looking back on all the things I went through, I learned so much about myself as a businesswoman, mother, and person that I truly value and appreciate as we move into 2020. In fact, one of my largest takeaways for the year was learning how to take a step back and outsource some of my behind the scenes work tasks so that I could truly hone in on showing up and serving my people to the best of my ability. This was, by far, the BEST thing I did for myself this year.
While chasing after my goals this year, I ran into some incredible resources along the way…AKA Rachel Hollis! Her two books, Girl, Wash Your Face and Girl, Stop Apologizing, were my bread and butter this year, and you better believe I am re-reading them for 2020!
Something I have decided to do in 2020 is keep a gratitude journal. It’s really easy to get caught up in the chaos of life that you forget to acknowledge the blessings that surround you. I’m totally guilty of this and ready to take charge of ensuring I don’t fall into this same trap come the New Year! Fun fact: I purchased the hard copy AND the digital version of my gratitude journal because I’m not sure which version I will take to more. I’ll be sure to let ya know though, haha!
If so, be sure to check out the 2019 family bucket list my family and I took on this year! Find it here.
Best of luck chasing those goals, friend!! Cheers to a great year!
I am thrilled to share “The Best of Brooke” with you today on the blog! The end of the year is already in sight and I can hardly believe it! Before we step into the start of a new decade, let’s take some time to celebrate the things we achieved within this decade and year, shall we? I’ll kick us off!
You may or may not already know this but in November 2010, I SOLD my engagement ring to buy a camera.
Michael and I had been married for exactly a year when we welcomed our very sweet (and VERY unexpected) little boy, Brady.
My mom came to witness the birth of her first grandchild and you better believe we took a BAJILLION pictures once he arrived (that’s not an exact number…but pretty dang close). Before she came, she purchased a brand new DSLR and my love for beautiful photos met with a desire to have them of our newest addition.
As newlyweds with a newborn and NO extra money to spend, the hubs and I agreed it was the most logical thing to do in order for me to have my dream camera!
Once I got the camera in my hands, there was no looking back. And that is how Brooke Bakken Photography came to be!
The other day, I went to see what my top nine Instagram posts were for 2019. I was surprised to find out my top posts were not related to my work but instead who I am as a person- whether it’s business-related, momma related or a very realistic glimpse into my personal life. Because let’s be honest, this world needs more #realtalk and I’m more than happy to help fill the gap!
I am so grateful for each of you! To be able to have the opportunity to show up and share my heart’s passion with you all is a truly invaluable gift.
To all of my wonderful clients who I have had the privilege of serving from the very beginning of my business to now, Brooke Bakken Photography exists especially because of you! Thank you for allowing me to capture the moments that matter for you and your families.
2019 has been a beautiful and hard year. My greatest accomplishment from this year would have to be learning how to know my limit and when to ask for help. This year, I took the leap and outsourced some of my work to my AMAZING virtual assistant, Elle, and I am SO glad I did!! I am a major people pleaser and rarely say no in fear of disappointing or letting someone down. Allowing someone into my business so that I could grow it and let it thrive at the same time is 110% what I am most proud of!! In addition, having a cover issue of Utah Valley Bride Magazine for 2019 was THE perfect way to cap off the decade and such a fun way to look back at where I started compared to where I am at now!
I’ll be sharing my 2020 goals later this week, but in the meantime here are my “The Best of Brooke” blog posts of the year!! Enjoy! And Happy almost New Year!!
Today on the blog, I am sharing Brighton and Shaden’s romantic first look session in the snowy winter wonderland of Jordan Pines, Utah. In addition, I am sharing three reasons you should consider while deciding whether or not to do a first look! Whether you are an LDS bride caught up in the pros and cons of doing a formal session before your temple wedding or a bride debating whether or not to do a first look on your big day, I’m confident today’s blog will give you some key takeaways to help you make your decision!
If you enjoyed Brighton and Shaden’s Jordan Pines first look session, be sure to check out Morgan and Skylar’s romantic winter wonderland engagement session!
Are you a bride-to-be? If so, I created the perfect wedding timeline and would love for you to grab a copy! Download it here!
Today’s bridal session is brought to you by the beautiful scenery of the Timpanogos Reservoir here in Utah!
If I could pick one word to sum up Ashton and Skyler’s bridal session at the Timpanogos Reservoir, it would be COLOR! The colors that joined us for this shoot complemented one another so dang well. Take one look at their pictures and you will see what I mean; they are bursting with one rich color after the next. I mean, just look at that bouquet! And don’t forget the earthy greens and the dreamy blues. Would you believe me if I told you my eyes couldn’t get enough?!
Grab a cup of coffee, snuggle up and enjoy this romantic and earthy session!
If you enjoyed Ashton and Skyler’s Timpanogos Reservoir bridal session, be sure to check out Kaeden and Allison’s dreamy golden hour bridal session as well!
Are you a bride-to-be? If so, I created the perfect wedding timeline and would love for you to grab a copy! Download it here!
Today on the blog, I am sharing a special styled shoot I recently did. This shoot was special because I got to work with some of my all-time favorite vendors and the shoot itself was unlike anything I’ve ever done!
When I was shooting the dresses for the 2020 editorial for Utah Valley Bride, a particular dress that didn’t make the cut really caught my eye. Even with three photographers, there was not enough time in the day to capture all the beautiful dresses the bridal boutiques sent for the shoot! That being said, I reached out to The Bridal Closet to see if they would let me set up a styled shoot with the dress that I loved so much. The girls that work there are simply amazing and were all for me doing this- yay!
I scheduled some time in the studio (it’s currently winter in Utah, so inside it was!) and contacted one of my favorite models, Elizabeth, who I worked with for the UVB dress editorial in 2019. She has beautiful red hair and is just so easy to work with! I also knew she fit into Maggie Sottero gowns like a glove, which came in handy for the shoot! She, too, was all for modeling for the shoot.
The next person I reached out was the florist, Mandy from the Potted Pansy. She and I don’t get to work together very often because her brides have a different aesthetic from what I typically shoot. That being said, I am OBSESSED with her work and knew I wanted to do a little bit something different for the shoot anyway. It should come as no surprise when I tell you I LOVED what she created after sharing my vision with her. The colors, the textures, literally ALL of it. It not only perfectly complemented the wedding dress, but also Elisabeth’s skin tone and hair.
My friend Katie from KL Artistry always does amazing hair and makeup. It had also been a while since I had seen her, so she was my go-to gal for the shoot.
My favorite studio is up in Draper, Utah. It has SO much personality and character to it. However, the afternoon light that is shown in the photos I am sharing today has a ton of sun on the wall. It’s not your average clean, evenly lit background, but I knew this going into it. The truth is, I wanted to do something different outside of my typical bright and airy approach. Thus, I decided to shoot at this time.
I loved working with Elisabeth because I didn’t really have to pose her. I placed her based on the lighting and shadows and let her take care of the rest. She was a true and total natural and gave me one less thing to worry about while I focused on the technical side of things during the shoot.
I am SO in love with how these images came out. They’re not your typical Brooke Bakken Photography images BUT I AM HERE FOR IT!!! In 2020, I am going to challenge myself to get out of the box and work on my artistic poise with each of my sessions. Truth is, I have played it safe in my career- giving clients exactly what they want. But I also know that different is good, so while I am still going to give my amazing clients exactly what they want, I am also going to take a few minutes of each session to do something different and out of the box. And I can’t wait to see what comes from it.
I hope you enjoy these pictures!
If you enjoyed today’s winter styled shoot, be sure to check out Morgan and Skyler’s winter wonderland engagements!
Today on the blog, I am sharing my best dress shopping tips to help ensure you have a memorable dress shopping experience!
Dress shopping can be really stressful, especially if you go into it not knowing what to expect. That being said, the best way to enjoy finding the right dress for you is by coming prepared!
“How can I be as prepared as possible, Brooke?” Ah, I am SO glad you asked!
I hope you found these tips helpful! If you are bride-to-be, be sure to grab my FREE guide to planning the perfect day-of timeline. Snag it here!
Just a heads up, today’s post is AWESOME! Keep reading to grab the tea on the details behind Utah Valley Bride’s 2019 dress spread! I’ll preface with this: this event was what all our wedding dress dreams are made of!
I recently had the privilege of shooting the 2020 dress spread for Utah Valley Bride. This is my third time working alongside the UVB team and I’ve got to say, each year just gets better and better- specifically with dress spreads. If I told you I shot 51 dresses in 6 hours, would you believe me? It’s true, I swear! Dress spread shoots are intense, but SO much fun. It is a blast getting to see all the different styles of dresses and watching all the moving parts come together for one final piece. It also reminds me of the truth that there really is a dress out there for everyone- every silhouette, every style, every unique dress dream. Whether you’re going for a boho look or you want a classic ball gown, it’s all out there, sis!
That being said, today we are celebrating the coming of the New Year with the beautiful dresses that were featured in the UVB 2019 issue. Enjoy!!
If you enjoy today’s blog post and all those dreamy dresses, be sure to check out the mock wedding I partnered with UVB for. I honestly wish I could step back in time just to relive this dreamy day!!
Chantel Lauren’s 2019 collection is named after inspiring female country music icons. This stunner, named Jolene for the Dolly Parton classic, has a silk strapless bodice, horsehair hem, and a hand-painted ruffled organza skirt, Your beauty is beyond compare, girl. #takeyourman! Get the gown at Chantel Lauren.
Ravishing rose gold. Beautiful beading. Terrific tulle. A singular showstopper. Get the gown at Bridal Closet.
This pleated skirt is stunningly unique. Simple, sweet perfection. Get the gown at Blanc by Julia LeSueur.
With a 3D beaded lace bodice, and an a-line organza skirt, this gown stuns from head to hem. Get the gown at Elizabeth Cooper Design.
This trumpet gown is a tour deforce in texture. The fit is incredible, and it’s layer after layer of mixed-material magic. Get the gown at Fantasy Bridal.
This off-the-shoulder gown with sequined flower sleeves is fierce, romantic, and absolutely unforgettable. Get the gown at Mary’s Bridal.