Strickler Family and Maternity Session

Honestly, every time I look at these pictures it makes me a little teary eyed. It’s probably because I love all three and soon to be four of these people so much! Danielle and I met in college at JMU where we both studied photography, and she is pretty much my person. We were even born on the same day, so basically it was destiny for us to meet or so we like to think! We live about six hours away from each other now, but there is always a photo session involved when we get together. These two lovebirds are welcoming a little girl to their family of four in October and I can’t wait to watch them grow as a family.

We went down to the river because I have been dying to shoot a maternity session in the water. I also had this vision of a floral maxi in the water so Danielle humored me and agreed to let me pick out her dress. I told you she’s my person. I found this gorgeous floral maxi on PinkBlush Maternity and it fit my vision perfectly. Honestly, the lighting, it made me giddy. That golden light falling on Danielle when we took her maternity portraits just took my breath away, plus I was also shooting the most gorgeous momma to be.

I think the thing that touches me the most with these pictures is how these wonderful people look at each other with such love. If these portraits with Danielle and Riley don’t make your heart swell up with happiness, I’m not sure what will. As gorgeous as the dress was, the candid shots that we took at the end just captured the three of them so perfectly. It’s not always about those perfectly styled moments people. Sometimes it’s just about enjoying the moment and being one another that is perfect. No Riley’s were harmed in the making of those throwing photographs!

Make sure you scroll all the way down to the end of this post. I have a little throwback for y’all.

And finally a throwback to the first session I did with these two lovebirds. I wanted to have some bride and groom pictures for my portfolio so Danielle and Bucky dressed up in their wedding duds and modeled for me in a field. Honestly, I probably had no idea what I was doing, but I love looking at how far all of us have come.


Violet | One Month

I owe a lot to Sarah. When she decided to go back to school to get her Masters, I took over for her teaching at the elementary school I currently work at. She also introduced me to my husband and thought that we would be a good match. I know! Not only is she an amazing artist and educator, she is now an amazing mom! I have had so much fun doing photography sessions with her. From bridal portraits, to maternity, and now we just completed her baby girls one month pictures. Sarah always brings her creativity to our shoots and this one has to be my favorite of them all.

Sarah knew that she didn’t want the typical newborn photo shoot, so she waited until baby Violet was one month old. Her sister Kristin flew down so she could join in on her sister and nieces pictures. Sarah and her sister completely styled this shoot. Their gorgeous floral crowns and the adorable teepee for baby Violet gave the session a beautiful bohemian feel. I loved watching these sisters interact with one another and found that they posed themselves perfectly and in a completely natural way. We also had a lot of help from Momma Brown who is behind the scenes in this shoot. She even made sure we all had bug spray when the mosquitoes started biting! It wouldn’t be a summer Eastern Shore photo shoot without those pesky bugs.

We also included Sarah and her husband’s camper, Little Eagles Nest, that they totally renovated themselves. I can’t wait to see the whole family take their first trip together in it! The girls channeled their inner mermaid at the end of the shoot and we got some perfect shots just as the sun was starting to set. Kristin bought the shell headbands that they are wearing in the last photos from her trip to Hawaii! They couldn’t be more perfect! I can’t wait to work with this sweet family again in the future!

We had a time trying to keep that baby floral crown on! I’m sure if Violet knew how fabulous she looked with it on, she would have liked wearing it more! haha!

I can’t get over how perfect the little teepee turned out! Violet loved looking up at her dreamcatcher as we took her portraits!

I absolutely love these pictures that we took with the camper! They just feel so natural.

These last two portraits of mother and daughter turned out to be my absolute favorite! You can just feel the love that Sarah has for this baby girl!

Shannon + Drew

Shannon and Drew are two of the most amazing people I have ever met. When they asked me to shoot their wedding, I was so honored that I could become a part of their special day. Shannon and Drew were married at Mimosa Barn and it’s my favorite venue to date. Let me tell you, it was a warm one but it couldn’t put down all the joy and excitement that everyone was feeling. Everything about the space at Mimosa Barn is simple and elegant. The breeze coming off the water was amazing as well!

Shannon and Drew’s family constructed their gorgeous wooden arbor, which I thought was really unique. Baskets and Bows did an amazing job transforming it with amazing floral pieces. I just love how the antlers fit so perfectly in the center! It framed Shannon and Drew perfectly as they stood together and said their “I Do’s” in front of family and friends. Drew’s face when he first sees Shannon made me a little teary!

Some of my favorite moments of the day included the bride’s parents. Shannon’s Bridesmaids stood in front of her and made a wall and I went and got her mom. As Shannon’s mom got to the girls they stepped aside and mom and daughter shared a sweet hug. When Shannon went to dance with her dad, he just stood there at first admiring and talking with her. Both Shannon and Drew’s families were so sweet and welcoming towards everyone.

I hope you enjoy these images with as much joy as I had photographing them! Shannon and Drew are the sweetest couple and I can’t wait to see what their future holds! All the vendors that I worked with for this wedding were exceptional so make sure to check out their links below!

Venue | Mimosa Barn

Cake | Corner Bakery

Hair | Brittany Cavaliero Burns for Canvas Hairdressing LLC

Makeup | Sarah Beth Perry

Florist | Baskets & Bows and Eda Grothouse

Officiant | Pastor Bobby Parks

Photography | Erin Ayres Photography

Bride’s Dress | David’s Bridal

Bridesmaids Dresses | Pink Lily Boutique

Groom and Groomsmen Attire | Men’s Warehouse

Rentals | Eastern Shore Events and Rentals

DJ | Josh Bundick

Invitations | Zazzle

Welcome to Erin Ayres Photography’s Blog Page

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Welcome to Erin Ayres Photography’s Blog Page! Everything is not quite up and running just yet but it will be soon! Check back soon for new blog posts! Thanks for stopping by!

Film Fix – Toy Thursday

So today for Film Fix, I decided to devote my post to all things toy this Thursday! All of these images were taken when I went on a lovely walk/photography adventure with Dani Strickler, my photographic partner in crime and Film Fix Blog post co-creator. The film is thirty five millimeter Lomography Color processed through Film Box Labs. Her little brother had all of his toys in the yard, so we discreetly borrowed a few for some subject matter. I promise we put them back! The little badger dude came from Danielle’s mom because she is just an awesome lady, and wanted to give us some subject matter. I found the little motorcycle man just lying in the dirt like he had crashed up against the tree. I think that image is my favorite. The dinosaur was buried half in the dirt so I excavated him, and we carried him along with us on our walk. I like how he was already very natural and dirty looking.

Using toys in photographs reminds me of tilt shift photography. For those of you that are not familiar with that term Tilt Shift Photography, you can check out this Wikipedia page to learn lots more! Here is a simple explanation if your not that interested. Tilt Shift Photography is when you have a photograph of a life-size location or object that is manipulated to give an optical illusion of a photograph of a miniature scale model. This can be done though the use of very complex lenses, cameras, and even in programs such as Photoshop! This website has a great tilt shift gallery full of awesome examples!

Danielle and I also had a professor at JMU that had a whole body of photographic work around Toy Portraits. Her name is Corinne Diop, and be sure to check out her work as well! I hope you enjoy the toy work! Maybe it will inspire you to channel your inner child and break out that camera. As always feel free to ask questions, leave comments, and be inspired!









Film Fix – Monticello/Natural Bridge

I shot this roll of 35mm Kodak Tri-X film almost three years ago, and never got time to develop it in the darkroom when I was at school. It sat around in my film locker and room for a while so I finally decided to get it developed. So, I saw that some other photographers who are using film suggested Film Box out of  Nashville, Tennessee. I got my scans a couple of days ago and couldn’t wait to see what was on the roll since it had been so long.

When I moved into my apartment summer of my junior year of college, my family came out to help me move and we did some day trips. It wasn’t the first time I had been to Monticello, the house of Thomas Jefferson, but I love the architecture and gardens there. We also went out to Natural Bridge and took the trail up to the waterfalls.  I used my dad’s Pentax K1000 that he bought in August of 1985, so it’s older than I am! It still has it’s original manual and the three lenses that came in the kit with it. I used the Pentax to shoot all of my Intro Black and White film when I was at JMU and never had a roll of film fail it in. Knock on wood.

It also means a lot to me that it was my dad’s camera. He and my mom bought it not long after they were married and took it on the trips that they went on before they decided to have my sister and I. Mom and Dad actually took a trip to Monticello and Natural Bridge and there are photographs of it in old photo albums. Looking through those photo albums makes me realize how I really got into photography. Dad likes to say he isn’t artistic at all but he is fooling himself. I guess it’s like the saying goes, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree! Feel free to ask questions, leave comments, and be inspired!


Front view of Monticello.




Dad sitting on the front steps of Monticello. (1986)



Under the Natural Bridge.



Butterfly on the Natural Bridge Trail to Lace Falls.



Lace Falls.



Mom sitting in front of the same waterfall pictured above. (1986)



Dad in one of the rivers along the trail to Lace Falls. (1986)



Film Fix – Impossible Project


This post is for all of you Polaroid lovers out there that yearn for the days where you could just run to Walmart and pick up a pack of film and go on your merry way. Heck, my grandmother was still using her Polaroid when affordable digital cameras came into the picture. They are nifty, make awesome robot noises, and the pictures even have their own little frame. I mean, what more could you ask for? This post is for people that want to try out the new version of film on the market that replaced Polaroid. Maybe you have a couple of Polaroids laying around or you picked up a cool one from a junk sale. This is the post for you so read on film adventurer!

I found one of the Polaroid One Step cameras in really great condition at an antique shop here on the Shore. Then Danielle bought me some of the PX-70 Film from Impossible Project for my birthday and we had a blast using it when she came down. You can check on Impossible Project’s website to see if the camera that you have is compatible with the film that they offer. The most important step when using the film is to make sure the film goes into complete darkness as soon as it shoots out of the camera. This step will make or break the success that you have with this film. I made a little bag to go out of the end of the camera out of the black bags that black and white darkroom paper comes in and some black electrical tape that I had left over from making a pinhole. You could always use black construction paper too. Yes, people might stare at your strange contraption and yes, they are very jealous of your mad photography skills. As soon as I take the picture, the exposure shoots into the dark to develop. The directions also say to keep the film upside down while it develops for a full four minutes. Never fear, you can always leave it for longer, but I wouldn’t go any shorter.

The only issue that I have had is the rollers in the camera not evenly coating the emulsion in the picture, but hey, it makes it unique. Just like a light leak in a Holga, no picture is quite the same. The website suggested squeezing the bottom of the camera as the picture comes out, but I can’t seem to do that without my fingers or hand getting in the picture. The film is in no way cheap, but who needs to eat when you have a Polaroid camera full of film! It’s worth the money as long as you pay attention to the suggestions in the directions. Yes, I said read the directions for all of you rebels out there. Make sure to check out Impossible Project’s gallery of photographers all over the world who are using this film. Feel free to ask questions, leave comments, and be inspired!


This was taken at the car show this year in Ocean City, Maryland. One of my favorite Polaroids to date!




The first Polaroid I took with my new camera! The field behind my house.




Snowball bush blooming in the front yard this summer.



Sunset behind the house. A little grainy, but I love it.



Banana tree plant leaves.



Another vintage car from the 2014 Ocean City, Maryland car show.


Film Fix


So my best friend Danielle and I are major film geeks, and since we graduated from James Madison, we haven’t been able to live and breathe darkroom like we did for four years of our lives. While we both love digital photography and now have our own businesses, we haven’t forgotten our love and fondness for the grainy goodness of film. We decided to create this Film Fix blog to show what we are now doing with film, having graduated over a year ago! Good lord it doesn’t feel like that long ago. We are going to try, and I mean TRY our hardest, to both have posts on both of our websites every Thursday. Well Danielle will have hers done, but I will probably be procrastinating. We are going to talk about everything film including color, black and white, instant, medium format, large format, maybe even some alternative processes! We hope to inspire our readers to maybe even take up that old film camera that has been gathering dust in the attic for a few centuries. We can’t promise it will work, we can’t promise you will be successful, but that’s pretty much the beauty of film. In the age of digital photography where you can press a button and shoot, film photography requires a lot of experimentation, failure, and possibly the selling of your soul to the devil, photo gods, or whatever your film religious preference.


When Danielle and her husband come up to visit me on the Shore, we always go to Ocean City. These film scans are from last summer’s adventure. There are so many great and interesting things to photograph in Ocean City from the food, to the people. All of these images were shot with Fuji 400 Color Film in my Canon Rebel Film camera that I got in high school when I first got into film photography. Though the Camera is at least six years old, and one of the last Canon film models made,  I can use all of my really nice digital lenses with it because it has a standard Canon Mount. I shot about a roll and a half of film while we were there, and I included in the post my personal favorites. The photograph from Thrasher’s still makes me drool.


I got the images developed and processed through Rite Aid, mostly because I wanted instant gratification. Then I found out that they send the images off and you wait about a week or more, and then go and pick up your prints, scans on a CD, and negatives when it returns. I was not overly impressed with the quality, but it wasn’t terrible for the price. I’m not sure if it was the film or the processing, but a lot of the images had a very blue hue in both the prints and the scans. It was really easy to fix in Photoshop, but I’m going to pay a little more next time and have the film processed professionally. I also bought the Fuji 400 from Walmart, so it wasn’t really high quality film either. It gets the job done, and it’s great for people who want to start shooting with film again. I just sent three rolls of film off to Film Box. Two words. Can’t. Wait.


Well now you’ve learned a little about Danielle and I, and maybe learned a little about film. Now it’s time to look at the pictures! Make sure to check out Dani Strickler Photography for an equally awesome Film Fix Blog Post! Feel free to ask questions, leave comments, and be inspired!

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