Hair and Makeup: Tips & Recommendations

Hair and makeup is easily a standard with every wedding. Every bride will opt to have her hair and makeup done whether with a professional or by a savvy friend. We get it, wedding photos are very important so you want to look your best. But why does it stop there? Wouldn't you want to look your best in every other photo you have professionally taken?

That is why we now offer hair and makeup with everyone of our portrait sessions. We have worked with Allison and her team at Reveal Hair and Makeup a few times in the past and were impressed by their professionalism and quality of work. So I asked Allison to offer some advice to anyone who may be interested in hair and makeup services prior to their photo session with us.

What services does Reveal Hair and Makeup offer for photo shoots and portrait sessions?

We offer hair styling and makeup application to enhance your natural beauty and have you photo ready. Although our styles last we are able to stay on set for touch-ups at an hourly rate.  This is highly suggested for windy days, long shoots or shoots with wardrobe changes.  

Why should I consider hair and makeup for a photo session? Isn't it just for something fancier like a wedding?

It is likely that any photos you have professionally done you plan to keep them forever.  In our busy world we often don't take time to get ourselves ready. Having hair and makeup or even one or the other can be relaxing knowing someone else will make sure you look amazing!  For our photo shoot makeup and hair we focus on a more polished you.  

What can I expect from my hair and makeup session with Reveal HM?

We will arrive a few minutes early to set up. We then will go through ideas, style and wardrobe.  As we get an idea of your look and desires we will begin makeup and hair. You can expect to spend about an hour and a half with us.  We are very prepared with styling tools and cosmetics that work well in humid and warm days, perfect for Hawaiʻi.  

How should I prepare for my hair and makeup session?

Gather ideas of the vibe you love! Have your hair clean and air dried. Your face clean as well.  We suggest exfoliating a day before to create an nice clean surface for makeup.  Wear a top easy to remove. Preferably not over your head.  

Finally, do you offer hair and makeup for children, and would you recommend it for children?

We love getting the kids all dolled up for shoots. It is not entirely necessary but so worth it to have your child prepped and ready for shooting.  We just polish the children up where they need it most   Typically to do hair and makeup on a child it takes about 30 minutes. 

Allison has been working in the beauty industry for over 15 years. She is trained and licensed as a hair stylist and has been mentored by a number of celebrity stylists. Allison and her team continuously work to hone their skills to keep up with new trends. To learn more about Allison and her team, visit or inquire about her hair and makeup services upon booking your next photo session with us.


Demand Family Photo Session

Kapiʻolani Park, Waikiki


I have to admit that I have a few favorite outdoor locations for photo sessions. At the top of the list is Kapiʻolani Park in Waikiki, specifically the Dillingham Fountain on the Diamond Head side of the park. The iconic water fountain is beautiful and the surrounding area has these gorgeous trees. My favorite wind-swept tree arches across a lone bench creating both a romantic and almost magical space. Check out these past photo sessions for shots with this tree (Hong & Warnock, Silva).

This was the reason we had set Kapiʻolani Park as the location for our family friends, the Demands. However upon arrival to the photo session, we had noticed that the entire tree had been cut down, leaving behind two stone pillars (which were built to support the "falling" tree). Let's just say that we made the best of it and ended on the Waikiki end of the park feeding ducks. The photos turned out great and everyone was happy, but a part of me inside still mourns for this lost tree.

I hope you enjoy these photos, and if you are still looking to get your family photos taken, let's connect. Tis the season for family photos.

Kim's Maternity Photo Session

Ala Wai Boat Harbor, Waikiki


This shoot was especially exciting to work on, not only because the couple was so much fun to be with, but because it was the first time that we collaborated with Reveal Hair and Makeup. When we initially scheduled Kim's maternity photo session she had inquired on the possibility of finding a hair and makeup artist to help her prepare for her photo shoot. I have worked with Allison and her team with Reveal Hair and Makeup in the past and was confident that they could provide Kim exactly what she was looking for.

We were all very pleased with the outcome and I will always recommend hair and makeup service before your photo shoot. Why not look your best for your photo session.

Little Man's First Birthday

Its been twelve months since this little man was born, so we celebrated with all of his favorite things in a camping themed birthday party. We decided to keep it simple, but definitely went hunting through the endless amounts of inspiration on Pinterest. Camping is one of our favorite family past-times, and why not, the weather in Hawaiʻi is beautiful almost year-round.

I hope you enjoy the photos.

Camping themed smash-cake with a candles arranged as a campfire. And the delicious campfire themed cupcakes were custom baked by Sarah Pruett with Little Bites of Heaven

Chili bar with self-serve condiments including bacon bits, sliced jalapenos, chives, sour cream, shredded cheese, Corn Nuts, and Fritos.

Documenting every month was a challenge, but so awesome to see side-by-side.

Happy Birthday Baby Samuel - you are not a little baby anymore. Welcome to the new world of a toddler!

Cupcakes: Little Bites of Heaven / One Year T-shirt: Jade and Paiige / Custom Lantern: Rustik Creations

Waddell Family Photo Session

North Beach (Mokapu), KAneʻohe


Four generations of the Waddell Family spent their family vacation at Kāneʻohe MCBH located on Mokapu Penninsula. This area of Oʻahu is particularly beautiful because of its location a few miles out into Kāneʻohe Bay. The beaches are pristine and the Koʻolau Mountains create a gorgeous backdrop for any photo shoot. The only downside is the access to this beautiful beach as it is restricted to military personnel. Lucky for the Waddell Family we were able to grab some great family photos there.

Hong and Warnock Family Photoshoot

Kapiʻolani Park, Waikiki



Chris and Petra are great friends and have been ever since studying together in Australia. Years later, both have families of their own. With Petra now living in Canada, they both decided to vacation together in Hawaiʻi. A perfect family vacation destination halfway between Australia and Canada.

So we decided to get some family photos at the beautiful Kapiʻolani Park in Waikiki. The gorgeous trees and Dillingham Fountain made for a fun and playful location for the little ones. Photographing little ones can be a challenge at times, but when we can have fun, I think it is the most enjoyable part of being a photographer.

Portrait Sessions and What to Wear

You booked a portrait photo session, maybe its with your family, or maybe you are looking to freshen up your professional headshots. But here comes the next big question - what should I wear?

As a photographer, I want to you to not only look your best for your photos, I want you to feel your best. This is not meant to be a rulebook for clothing styles and options, just a few guidelines you can use as a starting point when you are hung on what to wear.

Flattering Clothing Styles

Not that all fashion magazines know what they are talking about, but it is worth doing a little research on general body shapes. What styles of clothing would be the most flattering for specific body shapes - for women and men both. Put in the effort, and dress accordingly. Stick to something that fits your body shape, anything hanging off your body will make you look bigger than you are (who wants to look bigger than you really are?). You will feel so much better knowing you look good in the style of clothes you picked out.

Coordinate with your Group

When deciding on a color choice, think about the rest of your group. You want to look good together without looking too identical. Manuhealiʻi family prints may look great for that family luʻau, but not so much for your family photos. You don't have to be wearing the same colors, just coordinate them so they fall within the same family of colors (EXAMPLE: dark blues, light blues and maybe teal for some added fun)

Styles of your overall outfit should also coordinate within your group. If she is wearing a nice dress, then maybe a button-down and pants for him. If she is wearing jeans and a pair of boots, then something a little more casual for him would work. But no, t-shirt and shorts should never be an option, remember you want to look your best.

Don't overdo it with patterns or bold colors. Sometimes too many patterns in a group can make a photo look too busy. There can be a great happy balance between solid colors and patterns. If you have any questions just let your photographer know.

Consider Your Location

Think about where you will be having your photo session. Are you looking to have your family photos taken on the beach? Look for more casual styles but remember that 80% of your background will be blue. A button-down shirt and rolled-up slacks look great on men, and a summer dress is always a good way to go for women. Are you going to be having photos taken in a city or urban setting? A more dressed-up wardrobe would look stunning - think layers.

Things Not to Wear

Again this not a list of rules, but merely recommendations:

  • Bright white matching shirts and jeans, this isn't the 90s
  • Tops with big logos, stay classy.
  • Shirts with short hemlines and mid-drifts, again stay classy.
  • Super short skirts. Some photos look a lot better with seated family arrangements, need I say more.
  • Exact matching outfits, look coordinated, not matching.

Hair and Makeup

Are you having your hair and makeup done for your wedding?  Then why wouldn’t you want to get it done for your engagement session? What about your family photos, don't you want to look your best.

Hiring a hair and makeup artist will add that little extra to your photo session and allow you to feel your best. From a natural look with a simple blowout to full makeup, lashes and an updo, a professional hair and makeup artist will know what photographs well and how to make you look your best. Just let us know if you are interested in hair and makeup for your upcoming photo session and we will be more than happy to arrange something with one of our favorite hair and makeup artists.

To sum it up, just be you. Let your personality shine. Look your best and you will feel your best. 

ʻEwa Sunsets | Clyde Jeana Engagement

I think our original plan was to find parking at Ko Olina near Paradise Cove for some beautiful beach photos during sunset. Often times the best photos are found when we deviate from a set plan - so when Paradise Cove didn't work out we weren't too disappointed. The short walk around the corner took us to a little more secluded area, Milo Cove. The intimate setting was a perfect for an engagement shoot.

What made the entire session perfect was the sunset. Vog has a way of creating the most beautiful sunsets and this humid, still day did not disappoint. Just see for yourself. 

October 1, 2017

LOCATION: Milo Cove, Honouliuli

Cheng Maternity Photoshoot

Ala Moana Beach Park, Honolulu



I had the opportunity to meet up with this beautiful couple while they were on their baby moon vacation here in Hawaiʻi. We definitely wanted to take advantage of their trip to Hawaiʻi and capture some great photos of the two of them, especially her growing baby bump. The evening was gorgeous and created a beautiful backdrop for amazing photos of this couple.

When To Send Out Christmas Cards?

Now before you ridicule me for bringing up a Christmas topic over a month before Halloween, hear me out.

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When Should You Mail Out Your Christmas Cards?

Let's say you want to send out Christmas cards this year to show off a new addition to your family. You want your friends and family to have enough time to enjoy your awesome Christmas card before the holiday frenzy begins. Should be simple, right?

2-3 weeks before Christmas should give you enough time so that they are not too early or too late. Be sure to finalize your mailing list to avoid any confusion when stuffing envelopes.

When Should You Order Your Christmas Cards?

Now that you know you want to mail out your Christmas Cards in the first week of December, how soon in advance should you order them - assuming you are using an online printing service for convenience.

If you want to avoid rush shipping costs and potential delays, give yourself 2-4 weeks to order your Christmas cards. Remember we are living in Hawaiʻi (if you are reading this from the Aloha State) so shipping costs will be a little higher and time-frames will be a little longer. To be safe let's plan to order our Christmas cards in the first week of November. 

What About That Family Photo?

You could thumb through your phone's photo gallery for the one photo where everyone is in it, the kids are all smiling, and your arm is not blocking half of the foreground. I have done this before and I swear finding Waldo was so much easier.


What about getting that family photo taken professionally

Find that perfect spot with everyone dressed appropriately and voila - a beautiful photo you can be proud to share with your family. But how soon should you schedule your next family photoshoot now that we know we want to have the finished photo ready to print by the first week of November. Photographs are usually ready for you within the week of your photoshoot session. You will want to give yourself time to choose the best photo and prep your Christmas card design. So it looks like October is the best month to schedule your next family photo session.

Now talking about family Christmas photos in September and October doesn't seem to weird. Wow that crept up on us rather quickly.

To Summarize

Send out your Christmas cards in the first week of December - 2-3 weeks before Christmas

Order your Christmas cards in the first week of November - 2-4 weeks before you want to mail them

Schedule your Family Christmas photo session in the month of October

If you follow the tips above, you can reduce some of the stress that comes along with sending your Christmas cards and move on to your next holiday season project with ease. So let's schedule your next family photo session. You can find more details on our family portrait offerings, here or if you are ready to go, book your next session with us now.

Happy Holidays (that did seem a bit weird to type in September)

Photographers, Can You have Too Many?

When meeting with couples, I am often asked if it is necessary to include a "second shooter" or additional cameramen. I understand their motives when asking this question - the cost of a wedding is getting more and more expensive these days. So I wanted to explore the benefits to having a second photographer and any upsides to maybe skipping on one.

"I'm getting ready at two locations"

You will want to get pictures of everyone getting ready, and one photographer can only be in one location at a time. Odds are you are going to miss something. With two photographers, you can ensure that a camera is there to capture all the details.

"We are expecting over 200 guests"

Well in this case wouldn't an extra photographer help you capture all of your guests. Actually, when was the last time you looked through wedding photos from a friend's wedding and saw a picture of every guest in attendance.

"We are not going to see each other until I am walking down the aisle at our wedding ceremony"

The first time you see each other on your wedding day is an important moment. You'll want to have photos of your walking down the aisle, the look of anticipation on your face, the joy in your eyes. You may also want to have photos of your fiance as you are walking down the aisle, his reaction and all the emotions on his face. In every moment of your wedding day, many things are happening simultaneously and you will not want to miss any of it.

There are many occasions when a second shooter will be very important. But if budget is the primary reason you are looking to cut out the second shooter, then maybe consider reassessing your wedding photography needs. Some brides have opted to "hack" their wedding day by combining key moments so that they get away with one photographer. Other brides have planned their entire wedding reception around the fact that they are paying for only 6 hours of photography coverage.

In our opinion, a second photographer is very important. If budget is an issue, then there are other ways that we can work within your budget and timeline of your dream wedding to ensure that we capture every moment. 

Choosing the Right Photographer, part 3


Most wedding photography contracts will stipulate who owns the rights to the photographs. In most cases, the wedding photographer owns the full rights to all of the photographs and will be able to produce any prints and albums you want. This means that any images you also share digitally fall under this policy. In some cases you will only be able to share watermarked images or with proper credits. You will need to negotiate a release of rights for your photographs if you will want to print them on your own or through another source. 


After your wedding date, you will want to see the photographs immediately. Bear in mind that it usually takes a month to get all of your proofs back. There are a lot of images and most wedding photographers will spend up to 40 hours a wedding editing, color correcting and making any necessary adjustments. Depending on how busy your photographer is, this process might take longer than others.

Be sure to discuss with your wedding photographer how you will receive your photographs after the wedding. How many images should you expect? Will they be edited proofs? Will you be able to share them through social media? Who will retain the rights to the photographs? How long will it take for prints and albums to be made? Figuring out these details before the wedding will allow your wedding photographer to work smoothly and efficiently, and in the end will get you your beloved wedding photographs sooner. 

Choosing the Right Photographer, part 2


You may have heard it before, and there is truth to this piece of advice, ask to see a full wedding album.

Your decision to hire your wedding photographer should not be based upon a couple photographs that you fell in love with. Photographers will always put their best foot forward and with good reason. However, you don't want to hire a wedding photographer based on a select few shots, you want a wedding photographer that is well-rounded. And a full wedding album will give you that perspective.

It will also help to see photographs from weddings at similar locations to your wedding venue. This will give you better insight as to the wedding photographers abilities in specific conditions. If you are having an outdoor wedding, take a look at photographs where the photographer utilized natural lighting. If you are saying "I do" in a large chapel, take a look at some indoor wedding shots, maybe some with up-lighting. This will help you to see how your wedding photographer will be able to work with you and your unique wedding.


Many photographers will offer set packages for you to choose from. This may be helpful if you have no idea what you might want from your wedding photographer. If you do know what you want, and may be very specific in your needs for your wedding photography, it may be beneficial to find a wedding photographer who will be able to cater to your needs. 

Generally, wedding photography works on a standard of coverage hours. You will want to ensure that your photographer is available for your wedding during the times that you want them. Most weddings are covered from the getting ready stages, through the ceremony and even into the reception. Ask questions about what your wedding photographer offers as this will help you decide on what you want for your wedding.

You may even want to consider additional photoshoots before your actual wedding date. Engagement shoots are very popular for multiple reasons. Aside from the obvious reason of having photos of yourself while being engaged, it offers a great opportunity to get used to your photographer. Most people are camera-shy. It is a natural tendency when asked to pose in front of a camera. An engagement shoot allows you to get used to posing with your partner in front of a camera. Think of it as a practice run - because when the big day comes, there are no re-shoots. You will want to be sure you are comfortable with a photographer and vice versa. 

Choosing the Right Photographer, part 1

With the "wedding season" approaching rapidly, I am reminded of the joys and stress of wedding planning. Although my role was more of a support person and ideas generator, I am very aware of everything that went into planning our wedding about 4 years ago.

Unlike other vendors you would decide upon for your wedding, photography and videography aren't tangible purchases - at first. A lot of what you get from a wedding photographer and videographer is obtained after the fact. With that being said, there are a number of other characteristics that you might consider when deliberating over your right wedding photographer

I've narrowed it down in this three-part blog, and have laid it out in detail, all from my personal experience. Hopefully this can help to remove the shroud of uncertainty in choosing a wedding photographer, and at least make this step in wedding planning a lot easier.


A lot of photographers these days will define themselves as their style of photography. This can help you because a lot can be said about a photographer by the style in which they choose. I found this fun infographic, courtesy of Simply Bridal, defining wedding photography style into three categories: photojournalism, classic and artistic. Through the humorous approach, there is some truth to these photo style definitions. 


This style can be likened to a documentary. Photographs are taken in the moment, rarely is any photo staged. The photographs are taken in a way that will retell the story. Key characteristics of a photojournalistic approach is that moments are often spontaneous and candid. Photographs might include scenes of your wedding venue with guests at the bar, family members dancing at the reception, conversations at during dinner and laughing. 


Think traditional, posed portraiture. Although you might be thinking of your parents wedding album or even your high school prom portraits, there is still a lot of room for creativity through this style. Photographs of this nature are generally posed in traditional settings, while other photographers will take creative liberties to find dramatic scenes staging beautiful bride and groom photographs.


While most of the typical shots are still covered through this style of photography, the creativity is noticed by the approach and angle at which the shot was taken. Rather than a head-on shot of the couple at the altar, you might have an over-the-shoulder shot from the groomsman's perspective. This style is marked by an out-of-the-box thinking, with dramatic angles and unconventional framing to create the photograph.

Understanding these styles will help you to discover what you want in a wedding photographer. Although many photographers will blend styles and utilize multiple styles during a wedding, you will want to do your homework. Often times a photographer will default to what they are best at, and you will want to find a photographer that can focus on what you want out of your wedding photography.


As with any business today, there are numerous resources available for customer/client reviews. When I'm travelling and I need to find a great place to eat, I will usually default to what I know or look into social media platforms with customer reviews and ratings (ie. Yelp, Foursquare). Almost every time I am pleasantly surprised by the accuracy of the reviews and walk away feeling like a winner.

The same thing goes for wedding photography. Do your homework. Photographers are often listed on numerous sites, where customers have the ability to leave a review for them. Read the reviews. 

Visit their website. Often times the design and style of a website will clue you in to their artistic style. Check out their weddings that they've shot. Photographers will always put their best foot forward, so take a look at their style, this can give you a better picture if they will be the best fit for you and your wedding.


Choosing a wedding photographer should not be done based on the images alone. Your wedding photographer will be alongside you throughout one of the biggest days of your life, so you will want to meet them in person.

Key things to bring to a meeting with a potential wedding photographer include - wedding date, venue location and details, wedding style and potential style you desire from your photos. Ask questions, and get to know your wedding photographer. Are they confident enough to present their suggestions clearly? A professional photographer needs to be bold enough to get the right shot while remaining tactful without overtaking the moment. You need to be comfortable with your photographer as they will be shadowing you throughout the day. The more comfortable you are with them, the better your photographs will turn out after your wedding. 

How to Build the Perfect Photo Album

Don't let your photos sit on a hard drive or buried somewhere on your desktop. Spend a little time planning to create your next family heirloom. Photo albums can be a very daunting task. But with the right help and a little bit of planning, you will have a beautiful album that tells a wonderful story.


Where do I start?

You may be tempted to start shuffling through your proofs or scrolling through your image gallery. Take your time looking through your photos. It can be overwhelming, but it should also be an enjoyable time.

As you are looking through your photos, take note of the ones that immediately stand out to you. Trust your instinct. Just pick your favorites. Don't worry about categorizing them or dividing up which ones will end up on which page. Just remember that you will eventually have about 50-60 photos in your finished album.

What type of photo album should I get?

With the many options on the market, your first task will be to decide upon the style of photo album. Traditional matted albums are usually bound like a book. The photos are matted on each page with the edges of the photos hidden by the mattes - similar to a framed photo. These traditional albums can have various styles of covers including leather, canvas, or other natural materials. These are very durable and usually last a very long time.

Custom-bound albums are another option for displaying your photos. Often very expensive, these albums have photos mounted directly onto the pages. Due to the nature of their construction, these albums are often delicate and require a slipcase or protective sleeves.

Finally the increasingly popular option prints and feels much like a coffee-table book. Endlessly customizable, these photo albums are printed on a press with the photos printed on the pages like a magazine. The quality of your photos are completely dependent on the quality of the paper of choice.

How do I design my photo album?

Once you have picked out your favorite photos and decided upon the style of photo album, the next step is to organize the photos. Your photo album should read like a book. Each photo should be able to tell a story. Make sure that every important detail is included in your photo selection. Organizing the photos onto each page is important. Remember to balance the style of photographs.

Once you have a good idea of which photos you want to have on each page, step back and look at each page as a part of the whole photo album. Look at the way each photo on the page leads into the next. Spending time to create these meaningful layouts will add a lot of depth to the photo album.

In the day-and-age of DIY projects and Pinterest tutorials, don't feel like you need to go at this alone. Work with your photographer to produce your photo album. You don't want to make simple mistake of printing pixelated images or skewed layouts. The photo album should be something that you are proud to showoff. Remember you are creating your family heirloom to last for generations to come.