Amy & Jordan

About Amy & Jordan Photography

We fell in love in high school. When there was nothing more important than the homecoming dance. When a driver’s license was a commodity. When passing notes was an art form. We were young little pups ready to take on the world.

Today, we are a husband and wife photography team based in Scottsdale, Arizona. We are passionate about marriage and blessed to do what we love together. If you would like to know more, visit our website using the link above.

Our Anniversary in Venice

We are beyond excited to share our anniversary session in VENICE with you today! A total dream come true!!

When we first started planning our five year wedding anniversary trip, we talked about how much we would love to do our anniversary session in Europe, but we never dreamed we would get this lucky! We spent almost a month traveling through seven countries and over thirty cities and truly had the adventure of our lives. We saw more than we ever imagined and even got to photograph a romantic engagement session in Ireland that had us pinching ourselves. The only thing that was left to make this a truly perfect trip was figuring out a way to capture it. We knew we wanted photos that would help us remember everything about this time in our lives and freeze the moment and emotions forever. Something that we could show our future children and grandchildren and reminisce about those two crazy kids who went on one heck of an adventure together. Well, wish granted! Luck would have it that our talented friend and Virginia photographer Annamarie Akins who we met and fell in love with at the Connect Marriage Retreat in Georgia also had plans to travel around Europe this summer, and once we realized it was possible for us to coordinate both of our crazy calendars, the next thing we knew, we were receiving the cutest anniversary gift from Annamarie in the mail and planning our session in VENICE!! We almost died. Can you die from sheer anticipation? We almost did.

We met up with Annamarie and her husband Ryan on the very last day of our trip, and we were so excited to see them. They’ve become great friends of ours, and after almost a month of traveling alone, nothing felt better than spending time with familiar, friendly faces like theirs. We talked for hours, explored the city, had a fabulous Italian dinner and showed them our favorite gelato spot, but in between all that, we got to do our dream session in Venice! We’re so excited to share some of our favorites with you today! We had such a hard time narrowing them down because we love SO MANY! Annamarie, thank you for giving us the gift of a lifetime! We will cherish these forever!

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer
Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Venice Photographer

Photo Credit: Annamarie Akins

Finding Identity

It’s no secret that we’re worker bees. At times, we might even admit we’re workaholics. We’re in our element in that go-go-go non-stop pace. As kids growing up, we got used to getting up early, going to school all day, spending all afternoon and evening at the dance studio or on the soccer field, finishing our homework late into the night, sleeping less than we needed to, and getting up and doing it all over again. It was a way of life. Something we started in middle school and adopted into college and our adult life. The funny thing is our schedule looks pretty similar now. It’s just the details that’ve changed. We don’t know any different. It’s our way of life. Maybe you’re the same way.

A friend told us recently that she struggles because she’s a grown adult but still feels like she’s earning gold stars. Measuring her success by her achievements. Never feeling fully satisfied, even when the accomplishments are big and great. We so get that. We really understand that. We’re that way, too. We’re pleasers and perfectionists, the first to think that what we’ve done isn’t good enough and the last to give ourselves a compliment, and when we finally get to the point where we can look back at something we’ve accomplished and say, “Wow, that’s really something. I’m proud of that,” it’s too late, because we’re on to the next thing.

For the longest time, our identities came from what we did instead of who we were. Amy was the dancer. Jordan was the soccer captain and future president. In college, when Amy stopped dancing, she had to find a new identity. When Jordan’s playing career ended with a knee injury, he had to find his. And, since we’d always identified ourselves by what we did, we did that… again. We became Mr. and Mrs. Demos, the fourth and fifth grade elementary school teachers. Then we became Amy and Jordan, professional photographers. Somewhere along that journey, from teachers to photographers, from employed to self-employed, from safety in our salaries to fear of our failures, we really grew in our faith, stopped identifying ourselves by what we did, and instead cared a lot more about who we were: a husband and wife who love Jesus and each other more than anything in the world, and a couple who wants to love and serve as many people as we can along the way.

Jordan’s brother told us something a long time ago in regard to work that we’ll never forget and that we repeat to people as often as we can. “We’re all replaceable,” he said, “Anyone can do our job. In fact, a lot of people can even do our jobs better than us. There is only one job in this world that no one else can do, and that’s to be a husband to your wife and a father to your children.” He went on, “If everyone focuses on those jobs more than they’re ‘work’ jobs, this world will be a much better place.”

Wow. That stuck. It must have, because we’re writing about it all these years later. We truly believe the most important job we have are the roles we have within our family. Whether you’re raising kids or living out your vows, that is more important than what any of us can list off under our list of career accomplishments. Now, we can’t sit here and promise that we won’t work our tails off, and we’ll probably still invest a few more hours than we should at our “work” jobs, because we love what we do and feel blessed that it’s our profession, but we can promise that, this Labor Day, we’ll remind ourselves that what we do isn’t who we are, unless it’s doing what we were created uniquely to do: love God and love each other.

We’d love it, friends, if you’d join us in doing the same, because, like Jordan’s brother explained, if we all adopt that perspective together, the world will be a much better place.

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Featured: The Learned Bride

With school in full swing and college football kicking off this weekend, we can’t think of a more perfect time to relive this Arizona State University engagement session featured on The Learned Bride todaySince we met in school, we’re total suckers for other love stories that start that way, which was why it was extra fun for us to hear Alyssa and Nick’s story. Alyssa and Nick met at ASU, and spent all four years of college together, walking each other to class, attending football games, and long boarding to the bridge on Tempe Town Lake, so making one last memory where they’d made so many over four years was the perfect way for them to kick off the start of the rest of their life together. The Learned Bride is dedicated to love stories that surround college campuses, and we’re so honored they chose to kick off this college game day weekend with this!

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Click here to see the full feature on The Learned Bride:

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Soaking Up Seattle

Overcast skies. Drizzly afternoons. Cozy clothes. Warm cups of coffee and clam chowder (in bread bowls, of course). Walks through the Pike Place Market. All things that make Seattle, well, Seattle. In college, Jordan’s school soccer team visited Seattle twice per year for road trips, and, ever since, he’s been dying to take Amy back with him. Last week, he finally got the chance! Seattle was one of two cities we visited in the Pacific Northwest last week to teach our 5 Steps to Publication for photographers. The summer sun was in full force the entire time we were there, so the time we did have in Jordan’s favorite places weren’t quite the quintessential cloudy, snuggly Seattle moments he’d been hoping for, but it was still fun showing her a place he’d been waiting to take her for so many years! Here are a few highlights from our time in the Emerald City!

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We stayed with our friend and fellow photographer, Melissa Kilner, at her home in Gig Harbor about 45 minutes south of Seattle. She’s lives right near this beautiful marina/harbor/place where boats live (we never know the difference) and took us for breakfast on our first morning there. We sipped on the largest, most delicious white mocha lattes we’e ever seen in our life — ever — and ate an order of pulled pork Eggs Benedict that nearly left us in a food coma for days. Plus, the view was pretty spectacular. Not a bad way to start our trip, not a bad way at all!

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Melissa smiles all the time and is so much fun to be around! We laughed more in one morning than we’d laughed in a long time, like make-sure-you-don’t-take-a-bite-while-she’s-talking-or-it’ll-come-through-your-nose laughing!

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Thanks again for hosting us, Melissa! Let’s not do this again for a while, though, deal? Laughing that much in such a short amount of time might kill us!

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We spent a few hours walking through the farmers market in downtown Seattle.

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The original Starbucks! We wanted to go inside, but the line was too long, so we settled for a photo in front of the sign.

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Jordan’s FAVORITE place in the market is Chukar Cherries. He’s been talking to Amy about it for years! They make the most amazing chocolate-covered cherries, so every time Jordan visits Seattle he makes sure to sample all of their new flavors before purchasing two bags of the most classic flavors they have: milk and dark chocolate. You guys, he might even like these better than Blue Bell (gasp!).

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Amy hates seafood (a flaw that Jordan overlooks), but it was fun to cruise through the market and see all the different varieties of fresh fish, as well as the beautiful bouquets of fresh flowers everywhere, too!

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For the Seattle event, Erica Owens graciously opened up her studio for us. We had so much fun spending time in community with so many great photographers and sharing our practical tips for shooting editorially and getting published. Well, if you look at this photo, Amy’s teaching about publication. Jordan’s trying to remember NOT to use wizard hands when it’s his turn to talk.

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Phew! No wizard hands were caught this time. Crisis averted.

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Seattle, you have an awesome group of Showiteers! We loved meeting all of you and can’t wait to come back again in the future!

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Click the links below to see our other adventures in cities we’ve visited to teach 5 Steps to Publication and help launch local Showiteer groups this year! More to come! Stay tuned!

Denver
Phoenix
Vancouver
Seattle

5 Tips for Photographing Your Vacation

We photograph other people’s memories for a living, but when it comes to shooting our own personal memories and travels, it’s a whole different ballgame! We’re in a season of life right now that’s got on us on the road as much (if not more) than it’s got us at home. It’s exhausting and exhilarating all at the same time. We’re so thankful that God’s blessed us with the chance to see the country and the world together. It’s caused us to seize every minute and squeeze as many memories as we can out of each place we go. To be intentional about looking up long enough to see things with our eyes and also documenting them with our cameras (and not just our iPhones), so that we can look back years from now and remember what a fun ride we had.

Last week, we shared our 5 Gear Essentials for Traveling Photographers, and today we’re talking sharing our 5 Tips for Photographing Your Vacation. We hope that what we’ve learned through our travels can help you make the most out of your memories, too! 

1. Embrace challenging light
As professional photographers, it’s really hard for us to turn our “professional” brains off, even when we’re on vacation!We’ve conditioned our minds to constantly search for the best, softest, prettiest light, when the sun is behind our subjects lightly rim-lighting their hair or in full open shade with nice even light on their faces, which is a really good thing… except when we’re sight-seeing! The reality of traveling is that we’re not going to get to see and shoot photos of us at The Colosseum, The Vatican and The Leaning Tower of Pisa during the golden hour. In fact, we’re going to see those things at noon when the sun is harsh and high in the sky and there isn’t an ounce of shade to be found! But we had to keep reminding ourselves, these are our personal memories, and we’d much rather have a photo with some harsh light of us in a really cool spot we may never get the chance to visit again than with no photo at all. So embrace the tough light and shoot away!

When it comes to shooting large monuments during the majority of the day, we actually recommend finding the side of the monument with the most direct sunlight on it. If it can’t be soft, at least it can be even! We keep our sunglasses on, which covers the ugly harsh shadows around our eyes, and then shoot for our memories. The same light is hitting us and hitting the monument, so it’s as even as it can get, and it helps create those vibrant blue skies. Mostly importantly though, even if it’s not a work of art, it’s your memory, and because of that, it’s precious!

2. Shoot at higher apertures
The wedding photographers in us are always drawn to wide apertures because we love creamy, dreamy look of those kinds of images, but when we’re traveling, our goal changes! If we’re seeing The Parthenon for the first time, and shoot a photo of us standing in front of it at 1.2, the whole structure is going to look like an unrecognizable blur. We WANT definitive detail in images with big, famous structures behind us. We want Big Ben to look like Big Ben! Don’t be afraid to shoot your vacation photos at much higher apertures (we shot a lot of those types of shots at f 8.0) and show off the masterpieces behind you!

3. Be patient with the crowds
We’ve traveled to a lot of huge cities, where people are everywhere. Locals commuting to and from work, tourists stopping to take photos of anything that looks historic, street vendors trying to make a quick buck… it can be overwhelming. When we’re in a situation like this and trying to grab a few quick photos, we stay in the viewfinder longer than normal. Most crowds are passing through, and there is normally a brief moment or two when everyone walks out of your frame. If you can be patient, you can get some pretty awesome images without any distracting “extras” in the background. In other spots, this might just never be possible. And that’s okay too! Take the photos anyway!

4. Include yourself & shoot for pairs
When you’re sight-seeing, it’s tempting to focus all of your frames on the location itself. A lot of historical sights have massive height to them, and it can result in you looking like an ant when you step into a photograph. We want to encourage you to make sure you take photos of you in front of all the cool things you’re seeing! You can easily pull a gorgeous stock photo of the Eiffel Tower off of a Google search, but in ten years, it’s not going to be nearly as important to you to have a photo of the tower as it is to have a photo of you at the tower. That’s the memory. In your quest to photograph all the cool things you’re seeing, don’t forget to get in the photos! Remember that you can always take a tight, close-up shot where you are the focus and the monument is just in the background, then take another shot of the monument alone, and pair them together in your travel albums, blogs, picture frames etc. It will tell a more complete story, and be something cool to pass down to your kids and grandkids.

5. Search for trustworthy faces
And on that note, when you’re traveling with someone else, it’s just as important to get a few of you pictures of you together as well! Most of our trip, we’d use a good ol’ fashioned iPhone selfie, but every once in a while, it always paid off to look for another trustworthy face (or another vacationing couple who could also use a photo together!) and ask for a quick photo swap. When we were traveling abroad, we looked for someone who spoke English, someone who was carrying a DSLR of their own, and someone who our gut told us was a good person. There’s no scientific way to predict whether they’re going to run off with our phone or camera, but we trusted it our gut and it never led us astray. Most of the time, we’d hand them our phone because it’s less intimidating, but every once in a while, we’d switch our DSLR from manual to fully automatic, and let them give it a try. Most of the time, the composition is wacky and the light isn’t ideal, but we still love those photos.

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So that’s it! We hope this can be an encouragement to take the pressure off yourself to produce perfect photographs and just focus on capturing memories for you and your family! We’ve gotten a lot of questions about traveling that have nothing to do with photography, like how to pack or how to spend your time most efficiently, so over the coming weeks, we’ll be sharing other tips that we hope can make your future travels easier and more fun! Stay tuned!

 

 

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