New Website!

  Welcome to the all new Summer Street Photography website!!! We're delighted you stopped by, and we hope you take a moment to explore all of the new parts of our virtual home. It's still the same Matt and Kendra, but we've been working with some personal trainers of sorts to get our new site looking like a total and complete makeover. (psst....You'll want to read all the way to the end - there is a surprise down there as well! )

Let's start at the beginning. Meet Melissa and Jonathan, the master minds behind the Brooklyn based design firm, Makewell. They are getting married next June at her step-dad's farm in New Hampshire, and guess who gets to photograph it? Yep. That's us. Check out this too cute for words photo that Jonathan's brother took:

Photo by: Jordan Motzkin

Aren't they cute? When they contacted us this summer about shooting their wedding next June, I couldn't help but notice their work title line on the very bottom of their e-mails. Graphic designers you say? I clicked into their site. And fell in love.

And so it began. Our site was in need of something a little more cohesive and professional. A little more, 'design-savvy'. So We hired them. Well, actually, we hired each other. We started working on the new site in July, and now, almost four months later to the date, we have a new baby. A new, virtual baby that is. Melissa and Jonathan were amazing to work with.  We got to help with the fun stuff, but they really were the masterminds behind the entire site. We love that the website is now much more technically fluid and functional; incorporating our portfolio alongside our current work as well as has handmade details like Melissa's calligraphy in our new logo and other parts of the site.

In short, we couldn't be more happy. Read on for a few new features, and then go see them in action! (p.s. if you're my mom, remember these images below are just screen shots, and you'll have to go into the main site to see them in action).

Here's the home page. Happy.

Oh hi. It's us. Bet you didn't know Matt does Karate. Venn Diagram for the win!

Jessica's dress and Abena's perfume. Part of the Portfolio sections. See that little portfolio icon to the left of our logo? Let you mouse rest on that and a drop down menu of various portfolio goodies will appear for your choosing.

More portfolio. Claire. Pretty, pretty Claire.

The new blog! We'll still be posting all of our recent work here, so this part of the site will be constantly updated with our new work. See those cute little handwritten links on the side? All Melissa. If you click on categories, a little genie will show you the various post categories. Nice and tidy.

The thing we're the most excited about with our new blog is the 'See More' feature. We'll be posting a single image from our shoots, and then you can click 'See More' to see the rest of the shoot. If you want to 'See Less' you can, with a click of a button. Also, something that we really really wanted was the ability to expand and collapse the posts without leaving the main blog page. On most blogs, when you click 'See More' or 'Read More' you're redirected to a new tab or window, and then you need to hit the home button or the back button to go back where you were. Not here. You can expand and collapse as many posts as you like without leaving the page. Amazing. Totally amazing.

Our contact page. Pretty self explanatory. This is how we get most of our inquiries, so now we're comforted by the fact that there is a nice photo of Jay and Lauren in a field instead of just text. win win.

So fun huh? We are head over heels in love with this new little baby. To celebrate the new website's arrival we've decided to do a GIVEAWAY!

We will be giving away one photo shoot to a random lucky recipient! If you win, here's what's in it for you:

-A 1 Hour Photoshoot with Summer Street Photography

-You'll receive 50 edited images on a high resolution disk with a photo release to use the photos for personal use

-Can be used for an engagement, newborn, maternity, head shot, senior, pet or fashion photo session. If we are shooting your wedding in 2011 or 2012, you can also enter to win an additional hour of photography coverage on your wedding day. Don't want to be in front of the camera? Gift your sister a maternity session! Win an extra hour of photography for your friend! You can gift your prize as well as use it for yourself. Shoot must be in the Boston area - but we will also be in Minnesota and South Dakota this winter, so if you're out there, you're eligible as well. As always, if you live in France, just fly us out and we'll shoot all day for free.

-Here's how to Enter:

-Like Our Page on Facebook, or invite three friends to 'Like" Summer Street Photography on Facebook. Once one of the three people you invite follow through, you have your golden ticket. Then those people can enter the contest as well.

-Leave a Comment here telling us what your favorite part of the new site is

A winner will be drawn at random and announced next Friday November 18th - or when we reach 1000 likes, whichever comes first.

Now go explore the new site! And come back this afternoon, we'll be posting two more fun posts!



Featured on Style Me Pretty Massachusetts

Once upon a time, before Summer Street Photography was even a twinkle in our eyes, I was a hopeful bride to be. Let me go further. I was NOT engaged and started reading a new wedding blog called Style Me Pretty. It has just started and the editor, Abby, was the only author. It was quaint and beautiful, and suddenly I realized that weddings could be so much more than the banquet hall I worked at in high school where every weekend looked like the same wedding. Honestly, I went through a period of time after working that job that I hated weddings (not marriages, mind you) because they all seemed like a meaningless tradition that people did, "just because". I was convinced that my wedding would be very different if and when it ever happened. It was as though the stars aligned when I started reading Style Me Pretty - and I was hooked. Every day I'd visit the site and drool over all of the various types of weddings. Home grown, big and beautiful, beachy, vineyard....all types. Around the time I did end up getting engaged I had found a few more wedding blogs to add to my daily reading list and suddenly I was a blog reader. As the engagement went on, so did the list of wedding blogs. Dozens and dozens of wedding  blogs. Style Me Pretty remained my favorite since all of the weddings they featured withheld a strict standard of taste and style. The blog grew, and grew, and grew until now, where it is a huge wedding phenomena with a sizable full time staff and most all brides we work with know what it is and turn to it for wedding inspiration. Recently, they started an even more exciting adventure into having local blogs. They still have their main site, but they also have location specific blogs for areas like Massachusetts , California, Illinois, and even Australia - to name a few. You can imagine our excitement when we were featured on Style Me Pretty Massachusetts yesterday for Maggie and Seth's DIY Wedding in Maynard. Beyond words excited.



Oh, and can we just take a moment to say HOLY COMMENTS BATMAN? You guys blew us out of the water with your comment love! Thank you for showing your support! We are truly overwhelmed.


And for fun, here is the screen shot of the Style Me Pretty Network with Maggie and Seth's photo hanging out under Massachusetts:


And lastly, our mention on the Style Me Pretty's facebook page. Which we were flattered to see since not all of the local blogs get mentions!



We're not big into tooting out own horn, but we wanted to share our excitement with all of you and THANK you for making Summer Street tick. We couldn't do it without you!

Making Me Birthday Party

We thought it might be fun to share a few photos from an ultra fun Birthday Party we were invited to attend a few weeks back for one of our favorite Wedding Planner/Coordinator/Stylist/Extraordinaire, Phebe, of Making Me Planning and Event Firm. Her business celebrated it's first birthday, and what a great time it was! You may remember that Phebe was our wedding day of coordinator, so we have a very dear place in our hearts for Phebe and her business.  She hand baked almost every portion of her adorable dessert table. Her peach pie was divine, and the adorable cake in a jar favors she sent home with us were equally as good. This woman has talent for days! Thanks for inviting us dear Phebe...and we know year two will be even better than the first year!  

Bermuda - Off the Clock

If you follow our facebook page, you might have noticed some sneak peeks from Carolyn and Sean's amazing wedding in Bermuda. Bermuda! We were so excited to not only photograph our first Island Wedding, but also take a little mini vacation in a place we'd never visited before. While we are working on Carolyn and Sean's photos from their wedding, we thought that in the meanwhile we'd share a few photos from our time on the island when we weren't working. We stayed in St. George, which is the oldest city on the Island, so we were happy to see the sights and go snorkeling in Tobacco Bay, where there are parrot fish! Some of our highlights included visiting one of the oldest churches on the western hemisphere (as pictured), renting a scooter (the scooter man didn't trust that Matt knew how to drive and made him go around and around the parking lot before letting us leave) going snorkeling (obv.) and breathing in as much humidity as humanly possible. We enjoyed every part of this trip, and can't wait to share more of Carolyn and Sean's Wedding Photos!

Glass Confetti

If you follow our facebook page you may have noticed that we've been hanging out over on our girl Amy's lifestyle blog, Glass Confetti. If you are looking for a way to procrastinate would like some more reading material dive over to Amy's adorable blog and check out a few posts we've done, not to mention read up on her adorable tutorials and sweet little boys. The first post was part of her South Dakota Series (Kendra's Homeland) and was a Q&A about our buisness.

*image screen shot-ed (yes we did just make that up)  from Amy's blog*

Then there is a fun little photography tutorial about how to get the most out of your point and shoot...great for people that do not consider themselves "photographers"

photo by Summer Street Photography - taken with a point and shoot circa 2006

The next post is a fun home design post - complete with before and afters of our place. Here's a little taste:

And finally a post about baking your own macarons. Don't tell anyone, but we had to make three (!) rounds of these babies to make them actually turn out right. It's been so dang humid around Summer Street that they it's seriously messing with Matt's our rigid baking schedule.

Fun Stuff, yes? Scoot on over to Glass Confetti and check it out!

Awesome Clients Part Two

Last week we made a little post about why we love our job. Quite simply, it's our clients that make our work so awesome. Truly, each and every couple we've had the privilege of getting to know have been absolute gems. In the last month, we've had this awesome streak of eating excellent food with out clients. For those of you we have yet to work with, we may or may not love you all the more if there is food involved.  


At Abena and Edwin's Wedding, we had the best vegetarian appetizer we've ever had at a wedding AND some seriously good wedding cake





At Kristin and Brian's Maine Engagement Session, they treated us to Lobster Rolls afterward. YES!




At Marisa and Andy's Engagement Session, they made us a gourmet LUNCH!

And at Sara and Andrew's Nantasket Beach Engagement Session we ended the evening with Slushies!! My favorite flavor was green. Matt's was purple.

See? Awesome Clients.

We can't wait to share more of their sessions with you!

A Friday Gift

Besides the awesomeness that is Friday, we thought we'd make it even more awesome with a little gift. A desktop wallpaper kind of gift! The first photo has a watermark on it since it's not really designed to be a wallpaper, and I thought you might just like to see it. (Because who doesn't' like hydrangeas?) But the second one will work as a desktop wallpaper. Simply double click on the second image and it will open in a new tab. Go to the new tab and left click to save or set as your wallpaper, or drag it to your desktop and do it there.

We kept the focus soft (ISO 640, 50mm, f1.6 at 1/30) as to not distract from your folders and icons. We've got a very busy weekend and week ahead and next week we'll be showing you another engagement session and wedding!

Enjoy your weekend and Happy Friday!



The Importance of Crafting Your Team

Happy Wednesday! I wanted to share a few thoughts both from a personal (brides perspective) and a professional (photographer's perspective) with you all about the importance of crafting your team on your wedding day. After having some time to process Matt and my wedding day I finally feel like I can debrief and reflect on such a special day of our lives. I'll warn you that this might get a little long, but I'll put some of the photos from our wedding up so it goes faster. All photos are by Chennergy.

For those of you who have worked with us, you probably noticed that I am an external processor, and Matt is an internal processor. I tend to chat a lot while shooting while Matt stays fairly quiet and gets these magical candid moments of our couples. This translates into many parts of our relationship, including the style in which we planned our wedding. While Matt remained a solid support throughout the wedding, I - like most brides - loved creating the ideas and overall experience our guests would share. I'd come up with a few ideas, run them by Matt and then we'd decide together how we wanted to execute any specific detail. I was the creative director. He was the executive director.

I am a very driven person. I have been since the day I was born. If I'm not doing 1000 things my job performance suffers. (I know. I'm working learning to s.l.o.w. down). I won't come right out and say I'm a control freak - because I do trust others to do things right - but I have very high standards. When it came to our wedding, I knew that I would have a very specific vision and I wanted to do as much of the wedding planning myself - which I did. I did not want a wedding planner, I wanted the satisfaction of doing it myself.

Early on, someone gave me the best wedding planning advice I would ever receive: "On  your wedding day, you can be nothing but the Bride. You can't be the florist, you can't be the baker, you can't be the coordinator, you can't be the can only be the Bride." After some contemplation, I jumped on that train, but NOTHING was going to stop me from doing all of the other things myself BEFORE the wedding day. Not only were we saving money by doing everything ourselves, we were also getting the satisfaction of knowing that our wedding would be a 100% unique experience since there was nothing else like it. We didn't want a wedding you could 'pick out' or buy. We wanted a wedding that represented us as a couple. Where we've been - where we are - and where we're going.

And that's exactly what we did. Since our engagement was on the longer side, we did the normal book your 'musts' right away (which was great because we got all of the big picture vendor things as our first pick) and then settled into waiting for other things to come around. Our one year mark hit and things started to pick up. When the six month mark hit, I spent around 10 hours a week organizing details and crafting projects for our wedding. In April that increased to around 15 hours a week. By May and towards the end of may, it was around 20 hours a week. The two weeks before the wedding it was literally a full time job. I'm almost embarrassed to admit that we probably spent 60+ hours a week at that point getting everything organized and set up for the wedding. We were exhausted and as much as we were looking forward to the day, we were very ready for it to be over as to not have the stress of the day hanging over our heads. Luckily our life was able to be put on temporary hold to make time for this, but we were going crazy. It had to end soon.

Our families and closest friends arrive around a week before the wedding day and everyone went into overdrive. Since our families were so insistent on arriving early to help, we were organized enough to hand them different lists of things to get done. They were life savers. We knew that when they arrived, that we had done as much as we could on our own, and our wedding planning phase was over. The only way the wedding was actually going to happen was through their hard work pulling together the final strings. The night before the wedding I was feeling very nervous and overwhelmed. Our friends and family had done so much to get everything in line, but I hadn't let go yet. Since I wasn't going to be there, I was scared to death that something was going to go wrong in the set up of the actual event.

When I woke up on the morning of our wedding, I still had a pit in my stomach, but after a spending a little bit of time by myself with my journal and bible, I was ready to be a bride. Anything that went wrong would have been okay because I realized that the day was only today, and whatever was going to happen was exactly how it was meant to be.  I transitioned into full trust of two people, Emily and Phebe. I have known Emily since I was three years old and have always known she was going to be in my wedding. We know each other so intimately, that when she recently started a Floral and Event Styling Business in Minneapolis, MN, I knew that she had to be my florist and stylist. I knew she would understand my vision for the day and would be the perfect person to hand over all of the hard work I'd done collecting antiques, crafting details and envisioning florals - and make my vision a reality. Phebe is a Wedding Planner and is a newer friend of mine whom I've had the immense pleasure of working professionally with. Through each professional event we worked on together, she was SO organized and upbeat. If something happened that was not according to our original plan she wouldn't bat an eye and would immediately find a solution everyone was happy with. She is bubbly but calm, an extremely hard worker and has an eye for detail. While she also offers Full Wedding Planning and Styling, I had already made the decision to plan the wedding myself, and had already made the decision to have Emily do the styling, so I knew that she would be the perfect Day-Of Coordinator. Let me tell you - while they might seem similar - those three jobs are require an entirely different set of skills!

These two women were absolutely amazing. I was able to be at Emily's side as she put our flowers together (which was an exhausting two days in a small air conditioned room) and after debriefing her on the items she was going to style, she sacrificed her own enjoyment of a relaxing day as a bridesmaid (yes she did both) by getting up before the sun to set up the wedding so I could be a bride, and not a stylist. Phebe joined me in the planning process one month before the wedding and the entire time she was always on call ready to help if I needed it. She provided useful advice (make sure I have bug wipes for a meadow reception!) and a compassionate ear as things fell apart. She even answered my e-mails when she was on her personal vacation the week before our wedding. She brought along an assistant to the wedding who was on headset to coordinate timing of events and even called all of our vendors very early the morning of the wedding to give them a gentle reminder that today was the day.

All of the ideas and hours of time we put into the wedding - all of the sweat and tears we shared with our families and friends the week before the wedding - all of it came together because we had 100% trust in our vendors. None of it would have happened without them. Most couples share that on their wedding day, but I'm convinced that Matt and I enjoyed our day so much and both felt like we were able to be 100% present towards our emotions and the people sharing the day with us because of Phebe and Emily. We were allowed to be the bride and groom and NOT worry about all of the little things. It was truly special.

After that long rendition of my personal side of things as a bride, I also have a few thoughts as a professional. While every couple who's wedding we shot have been absolutely beautiful and happy days - things go much more smoothly (aka the couple is less stressed) when you have a day-of coordinator.

If it's not in your budget to hire a professional, enlist a super organized friend to do it, and make sure they know In my humble opinion, it's better to hire someone who is not there to also enjoy themselves as a guest so that way when something goes wrong after they have had their dinner and start to relax and sign off from their duties as your helper - there is still someone there who people can turn to for problems (and it's not you).

As photographers, we often get roped into the duties of being the schedule drivers of the day of you don't have a DOC. While we have no problem stepping up to help things run more smoothly, this is not our job. It takes away from the time we could be having photographing important details, which compromises our work.

We're working on a full wedding recap to share about our vendors since many of you have asked about them, but for now we'll leave you with this: If you want a wedding that is full of details it's going to take a lot of time. If you don't have the time and you still want that, hire a wedding planner. If you do want to put the work in (it takes a special breed) at the very least hire a DOC.  Phebe will do nicely. ;)


P.S. If you're confused, we had a morning ceremony with a tea party reception during the day, and then a larger barn party later in the night. So yeah, we had to parties in one day. As much fun as it was, we maybe wouldn't recommend doing that since it was like planning two weddings.

Our last piece of advice for now? Hire photographers you love. It's truly all that is left after the day.