Alternative Bride Styled Shoot | Charlotte & Asheville Wedding Photographer

January 16, 2018

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“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” ~ Neale Donald Walsch

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This past Monday, this Charlotte, NC wedding photographer attended her first-ever workshop. The workshop was hosted by the incredible Mark Maya and the kick-ass photography duo that is Fox & Owl Studio. Can I just say I left a different person and photographer? Fo’ shizzle!

Here are three of my takeaways from the workshop:

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1. First of all, let me shout to the world that Jessica Nicholson (@themountainmuse) is one hell of a model! We all took part in an alternative bride styled shoot near Asheville, NC that was to die for. At first, the styled shoot was intimidating because it involved me and many other talented photographers all descending upon Jessica at the same time. I felt a little overwhelmed, but that feeling didn’t last long. What helped is the fact that Jessica’s a fucking goddess who didn’t give a shit that it was 40 degrees and she was lying on some snow. Ah-maze-balls. See below for proof.

Model Jessica Nicholson lies down on snow while photographed by Charlotte & Asheville wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff. Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff. Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

Jessica really is a goddess. I mean, seriously, look at her. A muse in the mountains of North Carolina.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses for Charlotte wedding photographer Claudia Wolff during a photography workshop near Asheville, NC.

I am totally onboard with the concept of the alternative bride. Send me all the alternative brides so I can photograph their weddings (especially if they’re in Asheville)!

Model Jessica Nicholson poses during an alternative and offbeat bridal session at a workshop near Asheville, NC attended by Charlotte wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.Model Jessica Nicholson poses during an alternative bride photo session outside of Asheville, NC as captured by offbeat Charlotte wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.Model Jessica Nicholson poses in the mountains near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.Model Jessica Nicholson points a bouquet of flowers at offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff in the mountains near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

One of my absolute favorite backdrops is a simple wood wall. The wood siding of the house was absolute perfection. I love the moodiness of these images here in particular.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff. Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses in the mountains near Asheville, NC for offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff during an alternative bride photo shoot.Model Jessica Nicholson poses for offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff in the mountains near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride styled photo shoot.

Model Jessica Nicholson poses near Asheville, NC during an alternative bride photo shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte, NC wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.Gorgeous detail shot of model Jessica Nicholson during an alternative bride styled shoot in the mountains near Asheville, NC attended by offbeat Charlotte wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

And then after all that modeling in the cold mountains, Jessica got a hot-tub reward! Kick-ass!

Model Jessica Nicholson relaxes in a hot tub in the NC mountains near Asheville during an alternative bride styled photo shoot as photographed by offbeat Charlotte wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.A bouquet of flowers held by model Jessica Nicholson in a hot tub during an alternative bride styled photography shoot in the mountains near Asheville, NC as photographed by offbeat Charlotte wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.Model Jessica Nicholson poses as an alternative bride during a photography shoot in the Asheville, NC mountains as captured by offbeat Charlotte wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

A detail shot of a bouquet of flowers held by model Jessica Nicholson in the NC mountains near Asheville during an alternative bride photography shoot as captured by offbeat Charlotte wedding photographer Claudia Wolff.

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2. The workshop with really helped me get over my perfectionist attitude toward photography. I had a connection to each and every image I captured yesterday and also FELT the connection in each image. Connection is a powerful thing that can make or break an image. Authentic images, especially when it comes to wedding photography, are something I treasure. That’s what I want for each and every client of mine.

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3. I learned to be selfish. At first, that thought seemed so scary. BE SELFISH? What the fuck does that mean? I soon learned what it means to be selfish when it comes to photography. It means be intuitive, and follow your heart. I finally learned not to worry so much about the rules of photography. I learned to do whatever the hell I wanted. And you know what? It felt damn good.

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Mark, Shannon, and Andrew are amazing educators, and I couldn’t have felt more honored to be in their presence. I’m so grateful to be getting out of my comfort zone with photography and embracing having my heart guide my work. It’s a great feeling to have! Being in the gorgeous North Carolina mountains and not far from Asheville really helped, too. There’s a sort of magic in the air up there that stirs and nurtures creativity.

Stay tuned to a second blog post tomorrow where I show you the images I got from the passionate couples’ styled shoot part of the workshop and share a few more takeaways!

Love,

Claudia

  1. Mark

    January 17th, 2018 at 2:13 am

    What an amazing set!!

  2. Claudia Wolff

    February 19th, 2018 at 2:40 pm

    Thanks so much, Mark, for being there and making your amazing workshop happen! I hope to work with you again in the future. 🙂

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  1. Mark

    January 17th, 2018 at 2:13 am

    What an amazing set!!

  2. Claudia Wolff

    February 19th, 2018 at 2:40 pm

    Thanks so much, Mark, for being there and making your amazing workshop happen! I hope to work with you again in the future. 🙂

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