Hey y'all, I'm Rachel!
"Hey Y'all" is Southern for "Welcome"... & you'll hear me say it a lot! If I'm going to be a part of the best day of your life, then I think you should know a little bit about me first!
I've been married to my husband for 5 years!! We have moved 4 times in the past 6 years...we live an interesting life! I have so much love for him & our 2 kitty-babies that I sometimes think my heart could actually burst! Speaking of love- I LOVE my amazing, & obnoxiously sarcastic family! My parents are wonderful, & have always been accepting & supportive of any dream I've had. I also have a younger brother who has the cutest 4 year old girl, named Hollie. You can call me Aunt Ray Ray, by the way.
I grew up in Navarre Beach, Florida & will always call Florida "Home". There's nothing like it! Growing up, I had a serious love for performing & singing (still do!)...I majored in Theatre at the University of West Florida. It all began when I was a little girl, & my mother bought me a Belle pillow at Walmart. I still remember the day we picked it out. I became obsessed with anything Belle / Beauty & the Beast related, & wanted to be Belle. Everyone who knows me, knows that's my "thing"! I am a very passionate Disney lover. Couldn't count the amount of times we went to Disney growing up & I even got the amazing opportunity to work there right after college... my life-long dream!!
Along with performing, I always had a love for photography. I was always carrying around a disposable camera & documenting all of my friends, any chance I could get! I upgraded to a cheap film camera, then my first digital camera, then eventually- my first "real" camera- a Canon Rebel XTi! My parents got it for me for Christmas my Senior year of high school. I was a photographer for the school yearbook & was asked by my teacher if I'd like to photograph her sister's wedding. I was extremely hesitant, but I'm so glad I did, because it opened up this part of my soul that I didn't know was missing!
Why I do what I do...
I always say, "everything happens for a reason", & as much as I wanted to be a singer/actress & work for Disney, being a military wife kept me from pursuing that- but I think this is what God had planned for me! & honestly, I wouldn't trade my husband for anything in this world.
I love acting/singing because it's a great way to express myself, & I wanted to work at Disney because I love making people happy. It really is a magical place to work. So, even though that acting career path didn't work out for me, I believe it still greatly benefitted my photography career from those life experiences. I'm a very empathetic person & feel like I can connect with people on a deeper level. Being an actress made me emotional, vulnerable, compassionate... & it taught me how to tell a story. Which went hand-in-hand when working at Disney - creating magic for the guests & creating stories & memories for them. I want to create magic for all of my couples & tell their stories like no one else can. I feel like all the experiences in my life have lead me to this moment! Being chosen as your wedding photographer, is one of the greatest honors. You are trusting me with something so important. I want you to look at your images & be able to FEEL the love radiating from that moment. As your photographer, I am helping you create your legacy that will last forever. Please know that I do not take that lightly. When photographing a wedding, or any session, I am giving it my all because I know these memories will be treasured for years to come.
A Few Things You May, or May Not, Know About Me...
- First things first, I'm a crazy cat lady. Let's just get that out on the table.
- I am most definitely a Disney Princess & always a Southern Girl at heart.
- I'm a Sorority Girl - Phi Sigma Sigma. LITP!
- I enjoy going to the gym & weight-lifting with my husband.
- I have at least 25 candles at home. I'm a little bit obsessed with Bath & Body Works White Barn candles. I have a fragrance for any mood!
- I want to learn sign language really, really badly! Bonus points if you sign & can teach me some things!
- I would love to adopt one day. I've always been passionate about it, ever since I was young.
- I collect key chains & pressed pennies. I have hundreds of key chains from all over the world- not just from my travels, but from my dad's travels over the years, as well. & I probablyyy have a pressed penny from every machine in Disney World!!
- Surely, not much of a surprise...but I've see Beauty & the Beast, well over 50 times.
- If there is a craft fair somewhere-I'll be there... & you can find me at the local honey booth.
- I would love to shoot a wedding in all 50 states one day. Extra bonus points if I can shoot in another country!!!
THINGS I'M CRAZY ABOUT...
If these things are anywhere nearby, they will be in my hand... (I look like the unhealthiest eater ever...I swear I'm not though! haha)
These are my go-to movies. Whether I'm editing, having a really bad day, or even having a really great day... these are my favorites!
There's a good chance, if I'm home alone, in the car, or in the shower - I'm belting out & dancing to these tunes on Pandora!
My bookshelf is FULL of books waiting to be read. I can't walk out of a bookstore without 2 or 3 new ones! But these are the best!