Today, we are excited to introduce someone who we absolutely adore, not to mention, she is also one of our Pictureline Pros. We are extremely excited to be featuring Wedding Photographer—Nicole Aston. Nicole has been such an awesome customer of ours and we admire her style of photography, especially her destination and elopement images. So without further ado, let's get started!
1. Tell us a little about your photography journey and how it all started.
I stumbled into photography through a happy accident when I was 14 years old. My parents randomly decided to buy me a little point and shoot camera for Christmas and created a monster, haha. I was immediately hooked and spent the next few years annoying my friends half to death by taking pictures of every single thing we did and posting them online.
My little hobby grew from there to conceptual portraiture, and then I started photographing weddings when I was around 16 years old. After the first few, I knew this is where I wanted to focus my photography. It's been 10 years now and I'm still just as in love with photography- especially wedding photography- as I was then!
2. What's your go-to gear setup for weddings?
I try to keep it as minimal as possible while still being prepared for every possible scenario. Especially because I am traveling out of town or state nearly every weekend, oftentimes to remote places, I need to be able to fit everything I need for a big wedding into a gear backpack. To get into specifics, I shoot on a dual pair of Canon 5D Mark IV's with a combo of 35 mm f/1.4, 24 mm f/1.4, 50 mm f/1.2, and 135 mm f/2.
A pair of Profoto flashes (A1's- probably my favorite piece of gear I own!), foldable light stands, and random pieces of what I call 'magic bits' to help give my images extra flair are all I need to cover every situation on a wedding or elopement day. I also have a stash of backup gear + wedding day emergency kits with me just in case the unthinkable happens- when it comes to weddings, you really can't be too prepared.
3. What advice do you have on how to make your clients feel comfortable?
LOVE ON THEM! I am a firm believer that prompts, gimmicks, and tricks aren't necessary- and sometimes are actually hindering what you're trying to get, which is the couple and THEIR story! The more interest you show in someone and their story, the more you care about them as individuals, and the more love you give them, the more they will be able to share their own love and their own story back to you.
Nobody feels comfortable in front of a camera, it's an awkward, uncomfortable experience for pretty much everyone. Really, truly caring about people- caring about their stories (instead of caring about your portfolio, or getting a killer shot for Instagram) gives your clients permission to just be themselves. Everything else just flows from there- no silly prompts necessary!
4. We are big fans of your destination wedding images, where has been your favorite place to photograph?
Thank you so much! I have no idea if I could ever choose... while my home base of Moab will always top the list, Iceland and the Amalfi Coast were beyond. Yosemite also makes the list of favorites!
5. How do you typically prepare for an elopement?
Elopements are hard to summarize, as each experience is so unique both for me and for each couple! Generally, after a couple is booked we get to work on planning the whole experience. I often take the lead and roll of 'wedding planner', and do a bulk of the location scouting (most of which is done virtually through a myriad of means- I sometimes have never seen the location in person until we all arrive for the elopement!) and suggestions, vendor recommendations, timeline planning, etc, all based around the couple's vision for their day, the experience they want to have, and the priorities for their elopement.
Once the day arrives, beyond making sure all my gear is ready to go and in tiptop shape, I also make sure I'm prepared for essentially a day in the wilderness, as most of my elopements are of the adventurous type! Good clothing, plenty of water + snacks, emergency gear- whatever I think I might need to keep myself and my couple safe and having a good experience.
6. What do you feel is the most important thing when it comes to shooting a wedding?
Perspective and preparation! Remember that you're there to serve your couple and be prepared for every scenario. This is a once in a lifetime event, and it's such an honor to be trusted to capture it for others.
We want to thank Nicole for taking the time to answer all of are questions and to help us get to know her better! Nicole is one of our pictureline pros, so if you want to learn more about her check out her pro page here, follow her on Instagram, or check out her website.