Meet the Heffner’s! I've been working with this wonderful couple for several years, so when Katrina called me to shoot Jon's surprise birthday party, I didn't hesitate. I've been capturing their memories, including their kid's birthday parties and holiday portraits, through my lens for a number of years. It's always been a pleasure working with this power couple, seeing them enjoy seven (7)years of marriage and having two beautiful kids, ages five (5) and two (2). Parties with this couple are always interesting, being that Katrina has always enjoyed planning unique events.
The roof top patio at Gypsy Kitchen in Atlanta, was the scene for the party that included close friends and family. Katrina's “always creative” vision was music themed, decorated with vintage records and 8-track tapes. What also made this party unique, was that it was my first silent party that was conducted by DJ Ola. Picture this - everybody grabs headphones and puts them on, hearing a mix of old school, new school, and reggae hits to help celebrate Jon’s 49 ½ years of life. His actual birthday surprise was well planned out and happened right on queue. Jon’s fraternity, Omega Psi Phi, showed up in full force, along with other friends and family to enjoy the evening. The Gypsy Kitchen staff served an assortment of Cajun style food and signature drinks from the outside bar, which was amazing.
My vision going into this party was simply to be the Photojournalistic photographer and document the special occasion. Anytime this group gets together, it's always full of positive emotions, which produces amazing photos. The lighting was perfect on the patio, with some overcast, which allowed me to use the shadows and highlights to my advantage. I had to anticipate capturing moments in the perfect light. The patio contained objects that would normally get in the way of a good shot... poles, flowers, umbrellas, etc., but I decided to use to my advantage… to help frame shots and it worked out extremely well. From the initial surprise, countless interactions, to the occasional posed shots, I was able to capture the event as it happened, through my vision and with a little bit of creativity mixed in.