Enchanted barn wedding andrew samplawski photography

Emily & Joe | Enchanted Barn Wedding

Enchanted barn wedding andrew samplawski photography

Emily and Joe were married on January 5 with a ceremony and reception at the Enchanted Barn in Hillsdale, Wisconsin.

A Winter Wedding at the Enchanted Barn

Arriving the morning of the wedding, my second shooter, Jeff and I arrived at the Enchanted Barn to find the ladies getting their hair and makeup finished by Jade from Touch of Class Salon in Cornell, Wisconsin.  Emily started out the day a little nervous, but when her nerves were calmed, it was a pretty good morning! Some mimosas were mixed, and the wedding party enjoyed some pre-wedding snacks.  The guys were already dressed when we arrived. They got ready at the Grand Shanty, right on the property, making it easy for the gentlemen to get dressed. Read more

Chippewa Falls senior portraits andrew samplawski photography

Adam | Chippewa Falls Senior Session

Chippewa Falls senior portraits andrew samplawski photography

I always enjoy it when my senior session are willing to put themselves out there and get adventurous with their senior pictures, and that was certainly the case with Adam, a high school senior at nearby Stanley Boyd High School.

Adam was more than willing to explore some new locations with me in the Chippewa Falls area, which meant that we were able to get a good variety of looks for his pictures. We got some great shots in a back alley and with the urban feeling of the city while also catching a few more natural backgrounds.

But my favorite part was when we headed back to the studio to get some extreme sports shots. Adam plays football for Stanley Boyd, so you can usually find him weight training in the gym to prep for big wins, and it was important that we captured this aspect of his life. It was awesome to see how easily he transitioned from student to athlete in pictures.

Adam pulled off some great action poses and put on his game face—literally—with some face paint. Complete with a helmet and football, Adam looked the part of an extreme sportsman. We were able to create a collage of all the epic images that I think looks like something right out of a sports movie poster. I think it fits right in with the photo collages they do for the Super Bowl! Maybe in a few years, we’ll see Adam out there. Playing for the Packers, of course.

Adam, thanks for an awesome senior photoshoot! I hope you had as much fun as I did.

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Tressie & Ann | Eau Claire Engagement Session

I had a chance to meet up with Tressie and Ann to photograph their engagement session in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. I had a great time with these two amazing women as we went out enjoyed their love for one another. Very excited for these two as they are soon to be brides!! Mrs & Mrs!!

Eau Claire Engagement Photography

These two have the most amazing personalities and it’s easy to see how much they love one another. We had a great time traveling in and around Eau Claire taking pictures at some pretty amazing locations. Eau Claire has so many different personalities as a city, and I love how we were able to take pictures in such different areas. Some of their portraits were in a picturesque, park-like setting and others are much more urban and contemporary. It gave Tressie and Ann a chance to have a few outfit changes as well. I especially love the “You are My Sunshine” picture they used, considering how brightly the sun shone down on us for their engagement session. And did I say their personalities are amazing?! Because it’s true!

Tressie and Ann have such a natural way they connect and their smiles just lit up every picture. When two people are so visibly in love, it makes my work as a photographer easy. It was great just letting these ladies be themselves together with no worries to the world. There was so much laughter in this session! I can’t wait to be the wedding photographer for their upcoming wedding this June in such a special place. I am very excited to be working with these two ladies and look forward to capturing their one of kind love! 

eau claire engagement session andrew samplawski photography

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stout ale house wedding andrew samplawski photography

Chelsie & Heather | Stout Ale House Wedding

Chelsie and Heather were married in a beautiful wedding this past August with a ceremony at a private location and reception at the Stout Ale House in Menomonie Wisconsin. I was so looking forward to capturing their wedding since I’d had the pleasure of documenting their engagement session earlier this year at Cottage Winery in Menomonie. These two brides were so much in love, and that love was carried through their entire day.

The brides both got ready at Chelsie’s parents’ house. Once they were both ready, we staged an emotional first look with these two beautiful ladies. Seeing them when they saw each other for the first time was absolutely beautiful. The joy when they saw each other in their stunning wedding gowns was truly palpable. Both brides’ faces were lit up with the light of their smiles. Their love is so easy to document. The way they connect was so easy and effortless.

Chelsie and Heather chose to get married at a private location filled with friends and family. It was simply gorgeous, a perfect balancing of rustic glamor. There was a pond, lush greenery and florals and stunning decoration.  I love how they used a pair of doors as the entrance to the aisle and instead of chairs, they used covered bales of hay for the guests. What a genius way to add interest to an outdoor ceremony. It was elegant, beautiful and private for the brides to say their “I Do’s.”

From there, the whole bridal party hopped into the back of a tractor to head over to the nearby pub. I love how the ladies with their bouquets were just loaded into the back. It clearly illustrates how much fun this whole bridal party was. Chelsie and Heather love to hang out at this nearby pub with friends and family. What better place to enjoy their first married drinks?

We then moved over to the reception at the Stout Ale House where the brides and their bridal party were greeted with hundreds of friends and family. The brides’ fathers gave the most heartfelt, sentimental speeches about their little girls. Everyone’s eyes misted up! As these two families joined to be one, it was so clear that the love and support that Heather and Chelsie is something very special. Two families became one in this wedding and it was such an amazing thing to capture.

The sun set and a rock star reception kicked off. Dave DeVille Entertainment had the dance floor packed all night long with music ranging from polka dancing to today’s hits. Even the little ones were out there dancing the night away.  It was such a wonderful celebration of joy for these brides.

Chelsie and Heather, thank you for allowing Alberto and I be a part of your special day. It was such a pleasure to document your love and happiness as your wedding photographers.

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professional headshot blog andrew samplawski photography

The Benefits of Getting a New Professional Headshot

When was your last professional headshot for your LinkedIn profile? Do you even remember?

If you find yourself looking at your headshot and see an old haircut, an out-of-date style, or an image that reflects a different location, it’s probably time to schedule a professional shoot.

With that said, here are 5 reasons to get a new headshot.

You Need to Show Off Your Personality

You’re not the same person you were ten years ago, or even ten months ago. Your interests and personality are constantly evolving, and therefore, so is your brand. You want to show off those smile lines that tell the world how happy you are. You want to show off your bright smile or your sharp, professional couture.

You’re a professional, and your headshot should reflect that. Even if you’re looking for a more relaxed style, you don’t want something as simple as a selfie. Professional photographers are trained to capture the real you without sacrificing quality—so let us do that. Read more

monson bridge senior session andrew samplawski

Bo | Monson Bridge Senior Session

I had an awesome time hanging out with Bo during his senior session. It’s always amazing to meet up with seniors on the cusp of a whole new chapter in their lives, and Bo was no exception.

We tried to incorporate plenty of Bo’s personality and interests into the session itself, like his truck and the family collector car. He looked so relaxed and happy leaning on that car.

Bo is also really big into baseball, so we created an Extreme Sports piece for Bo with his baseball gear. We made sure to get pictures with his mitt as well as with his bat and even got a great shot of the back of his jersey. With the face paint completing the image of his game face, he looked like he was ready for the Major Leagues.

Because we did the session out at Monson Bridge, we were able to take advantage of the gorgeous location for a variety of different shots. The perfect weather meant we could make use of the water and the grass for some classic pictures, not to mention the rustic buildings for a look that suited Bo’s personality.

Bo, thank you for hanging out with me for your senior pictures. I loved getting to know you, and I hope that your last year at Owen-Withee High School is everything you want it to be.

monson bridge senior session andrew samplawski

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Metropolis Skybox Wedding Andrew Samplawski Photography

Mikey & Kate | Metropolis Skybox Wedding

Mikey and Kate were married on August 26th, with a ceremony and reception at the Metropolis Skybox.

My second shooter, Jeff, and I started out the morning documenting the getting ready process. The bride and bridesmaids were at the Metropolis in the Dulce Bridal Suite, and while we were photographing them, they busted out a full-fledged pillow fight. Then, just to keep things interesting, we had to duck outside in between the rain showers to get pictures of Mikey and his groomsmen too.

After a beautiful ceremony, we moved around Eau Claire for wedding portraits. Despite the rain, Mikey and Kate were real troopers—funny and goofy the whole time—as we went around Phoenix Park and other locations. The wedding party, too, was hilarious as they photobombed pictures and enjoyed cocktails.

We headed back to Metropolis for the grand entrance and then some cake cutting—which was unlike any I’d ever seen. The cutlery wasn’t out for the cake cutting, so Kate and Mikey improvised by using their hands. It was hilarious—and delicious! Baking Memories in Menomonie really did a good job with their desserts!

I also have to praise All Occasions DJ Service for providing quality entertainment. The dance floor was constantly packed, and DJ Paul made sure to keep everyone entertained. In particular, the DJ’s scavenger hunt was hilarious. Everyone was sooo competitive, but they all managed to have a great time.

Of course, for as much fun as everyone had, there were also some truly touching moments. Kate and Mikey’s son, Brayden, played the piano with his grandma for a special song to his parents, and Kate’s brother put in a $100 bill to see the two of them dance together as he watched from the edge of the dance floor. Seeing him dance with her from his mobile wheelchair was absolutely amazing. No matter what, no limitations should stop you from what you want to do in life.

Kate & Mikey, thank you for having us be part of your special day. And thank you to the staff at the Metropolis and All Occasions DJ for an amazing day.

Metropolis Skybox Wedding Andrew Samplawski Photography

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wall art andrew samplawski photography

The Appropriate Portrait Size for your Wall

With the New Year, it might be time to give your walls a new look with wall art. Here are some tips for the appropriate size portraits to decorate your home.

Appropriate Wall Art Sizes At a Glance:

Figuring out what size print to choose for your printed portraits can be overwhelming.  Size matters, at least when it comes to what hangs on the wall! It’s hard to know what frames will look too big or too small. Here is a brief run-down of the most common sizes.

  • 4×6, 5×7 and 8×10 frames are meant for tabletops or desktops.
  • 11×14 and greater are for the walls.
  • 20×30 and 30×40 are perfect above a couch, staircase, or on a larger wall.
  • Remember that adding a mat to a frame can add to its visual weight and overall size.

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brule river barn wedding andrew samplawski photography

Laura & Vince | Brule River Barn Wedding

Laura and Vince were married on September 22nd, with a ceremony and reception at the Brule River Barn.

On the day of the wedding, we were all worried about the weather. It had been raining all morning by the time my second shooter, Jeff, and I arrived—and what’s worse, we were supposed to get severe thunderstorms later in the day as well.

We managed to get some bridal party pictures, but because of the downpour, Laura and Vince scrapped their plans to do a first look. But just when it looked like we were going to have to get used to the wetness, the rain stopped just in time for the ceremony. The sun came out, and the two of them were able to have the weather they deserved for a stunning wedding.

After the ceremony, we did some full wedding party pictures. I particularly liked the fun ones with Laura and Vince with the mechanic theme. Laura loves fixing up cars, though Vince hangs back and hands her the tools more often than not. In fact, Laura and Vince are working on redoing a vintage truck to call their own!

I couldn’t get over the details for this wedding. Obviously, the fact that Laura grew her own flowers for the wedding was an amazing personal touch, and the feeling of family that permeated the day was overwhelmingly positive—but my favorite thing, selfishly, was the food.

The dinner was a homemade breakfast and nothing but deliciousness: pigs in a blanket, fruit, and cinnamon French toast. It was all amazing! Not to mention the cake, which Laura had painted with the truck they’ve refurbished. It’s the details that really make a wedding unique, and this day was jam-packed with them.

Vince & Laura, thank you again for asking me to be your wedding photographer. And thank you for the delicious meal!

brule river barn wedding andrew samplawski photography

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Ashley & Brandon | Autumn Engagement Session

I met up with Ashley and Brandon this fall for an autumn engagement session in the Eau Claire area.

It was the perfect fall day for an engagement session… couldn’t have asked for a better day! The colors were at their prime, and the surroundings looked like something out of a catalog. I always love when Mother Nature puts on a show like this; it makes the sessions even more beautiful.

Of course, this fall explosion also perfectly exemplified who Ashley and Brandon are as people. They love being outdoors together and consider each other to be their partners in crime. With that kind of adventurous spirit and nature-loving sense meshing so well with my subjects’ passions, what more could you ask for as a photographer? They were totally at home outside, and totally at home with each other.

I love couples like this who don’t have to be prompted to be affectionate with one another. Brandon could hardly keep from kissing Ashley and showing his love for her, and Ashley was right there with him, flirting with him and generally being an excited bride-to-be. Whether it was cheek kisses or dips, they were up for anything.

I particularly like the images of the two of them kissing with the light shining through the trees just right. Moments like that only happen when everything lines up just so—so when I saw it, I knew I had to get that light!

Brandon & Ashley, thank you for trekking out through the woods with me to get these amazing engagement images. I am so excited for you to be married next year and hope that your love only continues to grow.

eau claire autumn engagement session andrew samplawski photography

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