December 31, 2016
Recently, we were asked what our favorite wedding of the year was. Radhika used to be a teacher, so we’re pretty serious about the “we don’t have any favorites” sentiment, and we can’t help thinking the same way about the families, couples, weddings, and events that we photograph. Yesterday, though, we set aside a chunk of time for what we are affectionately calling our “corporate retreat” — we talked about Radian Photography, celebrated all of the things we have accomplished this year, and planned for 2017. We loved being able to reminisce about all of the amazing people we have met this year, families we have seen grow, and couples we have witnessed choose to commit to each other. We don’t really have a favorite wedding, but a collection of amazing memories that we were able to capture. Below is our list, beginning with personal favorite photos from the year. They aren’t necessarily the most technically amazing photographs, or the most stunning of our portfolio. But they do hold a lot of meaning for us. Thank you so much to our clients for trusting us with their memories and to all of the vendors we have worked with that have turned into friends. We cannot wait for 2017!
As far as our personal goals and “words” for the new year? Radhika’s is “margin.” As we take on Whole 30 in January, the Beloved Book Club, running a business, having a full time job, being fur parents to 4, and being married, I’m looking forward to building more time in my schedule for myself, and making sure I’m spending an appropriate amount of time relaxing. Meanwhile, Ian’s is “growth.” A lot of learning has to happen this year: we need to learn how to run a book club, continue growing in our business, get better at being married (always), and hopefully finish my dissertation! What a big year 2017 will be!
Favorite Personal Photos
Ian’s favorite photo of 2016
I have to admit — this is one of my favorites, too! Not only does this photo show one of the parts of our life that we are so happy about (adopting #puppygirliris is most likely the best decision we made in 2016), but it also shows the richness of film. This is our absolute favorite photo of Iris, and a great choice for Ian’s favorite of the year!
Radhika’s favorite photo of 2016
Taken in Iceland at the Sólheimasandur plane wreck, this was a natural choice for my favorite photo. We have wanted to visit this site for a while, and walking the two miles in a barren black sand desert to get there was certainly an exercise in patience. I’m learning, though, that the best things in life require that.
Ian’s Favorite Photo of Radhika
Taken by our friend, Jessica, I just love this picture of Radhika. Sometimes it can seem like she’s brings the preparation and I bring the energy, but it’s moments like this that her unbridled joy and excitement bursts forth, filling me up more than anything I’ve ever experienced.
Radhika’s Favorite Photo of Ian
One of the first rolls of film that we shot this year yielded this shot. I love the grain, I love the black and white, and I love this field across the street from our first home together. But most of all, I love spending my days with that smile, and I love how Ian is physically leaning in — something he is always doing metaphorically.
Favorite Trip – Iceland
While we only took one international trip this year, we actually traveled quite a bit. Still, this choice was an easy one. Our trip to Iceland was amazing and we got to cross ‘see the Northern lights’ off of our bucket list!
Best of Weddings
Best Wedding Moment – Tina + JP’s wedding
Can you believe this happened?! We recently bumped into JP and Tina while out to dinner and talked about how many different people have asked us if this shot was real or how we Photoshopped it! JP and Tina really did jump into the Haw River after their ceremony! We’re so glad we caught this amazing moment!
Best Wedding Rings Shot – Laurel + Laura’s wedding
Taken at the beautiful Cotton Room in Durham, North Carolina, there’s nothing that a well-placed mirror and lights can’t accomplish!
Best Wedding “Cake” – Katie + Adam’s wedding
This was the donut cake of our dreams. Were they as good as they look? Yes. Federal Donuts outdid themselves and is one of the main reasons we miss Philadelphia!
Best Dress Shot – Carly + Warren’s wedding
This was photographed at the King’s Daughters Inn in Durham, North Carolina and we couldn’t have hoped for a more epic spot to hang Carly’s dress!
Best First Look – Susanna + Barrett’s wedding
We absolutely love first looks because we love moments like this. Can you imagine a more priceless expression on Barrett’s face as he saw Susanna for the first time? Neither can we!
Best Bride & Groom Formals – Amber + Travis’s wedding
One of our favorite weddings of the year was shot at the Hawkesdene venue in Andrews, North Carolina. After their ceremony, Amber and Travis got to go to a spot on the peak to spend some time together and soak up these gorgeous views!
Best Exit – Michelle + Erik’s wedding
When Michelle and Erik’s original plan of a sparkler exit went awry, we had all of the guests bring their napkins out for a unique exit that was just as incredible!
Best Traditional Dance – Murphy + Nick’s wedding
We second shot this wedding with Lauren Jolly at the Barclay Villa in Angier, North Carolina and the reception was one of the best we have seen! We loved the traditional Filipino money dance that the couple participated in!
Best Venue – Catherine + Seth’s wedding
Best Overall Wedding – Hannah + Scott’s wedding
Between the handmade bouquets, their wonderful bridal party, an ice cream cart from Maple View, that veil, a wedding held at Hannah’s parents’ home in Hillsborough, NC, and two amazing people that we have loved getting to know this year, we just loved this day. It was a scorcher, but we have the fondest memories from photographing Hannah and Scott’s wedding!
Best of Engagements
Best School Spirit – Laurel + Laura
As you know, we’re Tar Heels, but we secretly loved shooting this engagement at Duke, Laurel and Laura’s alma mater.
Best Impromptu Location – Hannah + Scott
When our first choice for photo location closed early, we had to stop and take a few photos at this gorgeous empty field when, while driving past, Hannah yelled, “This is so us!”
Best Engagement Ring Shot – Michelle + Erik
Erik is a drummer, so we loved using his sticks in this photograph of Michelle’s ring!
Best Destination Engagement – Monica + Sam
This engagement session in Washington, D.C. was one of our favorites from this year because it involved Radhika’s cousin, Monica, and her fiance, Sam. Stay tuned for their wedding this year!
Best Blanket Shot – Gabe + Anna
We couldn’t help but love this photo of Gabe and Anna snuggling on their blanket at the American Tobacco Campus in Durham!
Best Wind Action – Jordan + Taylor
Goodness, did Jordan and Taylor make a chilly, windy Fall day look good! We loved this engagement session with them at Joyner Park.
Best of Couples
Best Pup – Rachel + Ekant
You know we took this one pretty seriously! We couldn’t help but love Duke’s fuzzy fur and sweet smile, though!
Best At-Home Session – Amy + Daniel
We want to photograph all sessions in bright, beautiful homes from now on! We loved photographing Amy and Daniel in their first home together before they packed it up and moved into their first house!
Best Live Music – Jess + Geoff
That time that Jess and Geoff serenaded us with the Avett Brothers at their session remains one of our highlights from the year!
Best Outfits – Cameron + Erica
These two modeled for us while our friend, Megan, took a few photos of us in action, but they came dressed to impressed!
Best Dock Walk – Cindy + Victor
We love exploring new places to photograph, and Beaufort did not disappoint! We spent the evening with Cindy and Victor walking around its charming
Best Sunrise Session – Lauren + Clay
We wish we had more reasons to get up at the crack of dawn to photograph couples! We loved this sunrise session with Lauren and Clay on Wrightsville Beach.
Best Twirl – Jessica + Jeremy
We met up with Jessica and Jeremy at Fort Fisher during our beach week vacation, and loved how this black and white shot of a twirl turned out! That movement!
Best Sunset – Amy + Thomas
We have gotten to work with Amy and Thomas so much this year and are so grateful for this friendship! This is how it all started: at Wilmington during sunset!
Best Newlywed Session – Linda + Ross
These two impressed with us with their sweet dance moves and loving embraces at the JC Raulston Arboretum in Raleigh! We loved practicing shooting film with them!
Best Liftoff – Sarah + Cameron
Sarah might have been a little nervous about this photo before it happened, but I think we all love how it turned out! Thanks for being great sports, Sarah and Cameron!
Best Fall Colors – Christi + Andrew
Here’s another cute pup that we were able to photograph this year! We loved seeing Cooper play with his parents on Duke’s campus with the gorgeous fall leaves!
Best Skyline – Anna + Russell
Anna and Russell took us to the best spot in New York for their session, we’re sure of it! As if they weren’t gorgeous enough, we loved that skyline, too!
Best of Families
Best Family Walk – The Rhyne Family
We went out to the street that the Rhynes live on because after dinner, they take family walks together. We loved this sweet photo of them all together!
Best Before & After – The Godfrey Family
We have loved seeing Benjamin grow up over the course of this year! From before he was born to a smiley 7 month old, he is so precious. We’re so glad that Jess and Christina have allowed us to capture all of these moments, and soon, we’ll go to his first birthday party!
Best Dance – The West Family
How do Becca and Brandon get Dillon to smile and dance? A song that they sing! It goes: “Dance, dance, booty in your pants!” We might have laughed so hard that we cried.
Best Sunset Smiles – Gurumurthy Family
We got to photograph Diya’s birthday party and she is always a little shy to start out. But when we got to photograph this family session with her family to celebrate Diwali, she came right out of her shell when she got to play at Duke Gardens!
Best Destination Session – Vala + Hilmar
We photographed this session with our AirBnb hosts in Iceland! It was such a great way to get to know them!
Best Backyard – Barbara Hunter’s family
One of the sweetest family sessions we had this year included a tour of Barbara and Frank’s amazing backyard, complete with their German shepherd (we clearly have a soft spot for those) and their pond full of fish!
Best Dad Face – Courtney + David
This was one of our favorite sessions this year because it taught us how beautiful it is to deeply get to know our couples and families. After getting to photograph baby Margaret, we sat and talked with Courtney and David about their marriage and hopes for raising a baby.
Best Fur Siblings – The Marchetto family
One of our favorite things about this session with Kate, Michael, and Lindon was how sweet their pups were with Lindon. It is such an honor to have another photographer choose you to photograph their family and we were thrilled to be able to take these photos of the Marchettos!
Best Future Big Brother – The Fischer Family
Our very last session from 2016 included this cutie pie! Elijah is going to make a great big brother soon — stay tuned for when his baby sister arrives in 2017!
Best Overall Family Lifestyle Session – Roxy, Shelley, Jude, & Shepherd
We always go into sessions without expectations: we don’t expect people to wear certain things or smile in a certain way. All we hope for is that people bring their true selves, have a little fun, and leave more in love with each other and their families. This session, we think, met all of those hopes. We loved watching Roxy and Shelley play with their kids, Jude and Shepherd at Lake Crabtree. Their candid fun made for the most beautiful family session.
Thank you so much for supporting Radian Photography (especially if you made it this far!). We look forward to an amazing, intentional, powerful, well-crafted 2017 with all of you!