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  • Blog it, baby!

    Welcome to the blog de la audge! Here's where all the really good stuff is... keep up with more recent photo goodies, learn a few tips & tricks of the trade, and I might even slide in some crazy life shenanigans if you're lucky! And don't be a stranger! Leave some love, and stop in often! Who knows what glorious golden nuggets of beauty and wisdom you'll stumble upon... (*insert double eyebrow raise here*)

That Grace Restored | Styled Wedding Shoot | Atlanta, GA

A couple’s wedding is a story so amazingly unique, telling about each of them as individuals but also about them joined together as one. It’s a representation of their pasts and the experiences that have shaped them into the person standing in front of the other, and diving into an unknown future head first , a commitment to love above all else. So what if that couple could use their wedding day to change someone else’s story?

We’ve been working with a local non-profit here in Atlanta called Serenity’s Steps who’s purpose is “to cultivate authentic relationships and provide support to persons in the commercial sex industry with the objective of seeing them attain dignity, hope and self-sufficiency.” These guys are doing just that, and SO much more. They’ve befriended these men and women, listened to their stories and their needs, and when the day comes where they decide they want to walk away from their life in the commercial sex industry, they do everything they can to equip them to do just that.

A lot of time these women will become sex workers at a very young age (the average is 14 years old), so they’ll have little schooling and minimal to no job experience. This can make it incredibly hard to transition into the workforce and gain real experience to move up any kind of ladder. Serenity’s Steps answer to this issue is a paid vocational development program within a paper-making company that they’ve created, That Grace Restored. That Grace Restored employs their artisans to create handmade recycled paper, which they then use for their handmade journals and their letterpress products. They are now launching a line of Letterpressed wedding products, including invitations, menus, place cards, thank you notes, you name it! They were also just selected as the paper vendor for the Big Fake Wedding here in Atlanta this past March, so these guys are doing it big!

We rallied a few AH-mazing vendors from the Atlanta wedding community together to create a styled wedding shoot featuring their paper products in celebration of their big launch. We created a Vintage-styled scene with a hint of Bohemian flare, using a dreamy color pallette with blush, peach, creams, and burgundy. We wanted there to be as many vintage and re-purposed items included as possible as a nod to That Grace Restored’s mission – taking the unwanted + discarded and restoring it to a new purpose. The day we had our venue booked to shoot was the one day it actually decided to snow in Atlanta (and if you’ve ever been here when that happens, you know how insane that can get!!) – but everyone braved the storm and powered through to make it happen. It gave the shoot a moodier vibe, which I loved. Even though the day was incredibly dreary and ominous outside, we were fearlessly making all sorts of pretty happen… and it was SO worth it!

I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity to create all of this pretty with such quality wedding vendors, and to just have the opportunity to know them more personally – y’all, they are totally rad. (Hire them all. Every single one of them.) Everybody put in so much time, effort, and product to make this happen, and I truly am so appreciative! It was a blast, and I can’t wait to do it all over again! Ladies… take a bow. You. are. AWESOME.

Alright, now for the good stuff! Get comfy+cozy…. there’s a lot of good lookin’ coming your way! 😉

V E N U E | Parish ATL

I N V I T A T I O N S + P A P E R | That Grace Restored

F L O R A L S | Holland Daze

D E C O R + D E S I G N | Miss Milly’s Vintage Rental

H A I R + M A K E – U P | BeautyBott

J E W E L R Y | Brette Start for Chloe+Isabel

M O D E L | Jordan Hampton

P H O T O G R A P H Y |  Audra Starr Photography

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Paper, love, and wedding magic to you my friend… until next time!

audgeSIG

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Editor’s Choice Award | Two Bright Lights

Guess what… something awesome just happened! Two Bright Lights selected me as an Editor’s Choice for 2015, wanna do a little victory dance with me?? (*envision a giant flash mob erupting into mind-blowing dance routine here*)

It’s been a great year so far, even though we’re just starting! I’m making connections with a lot of new AH-mazing wedding vendors, meeting new couples and getting excited for their 2015 weddings, and celebrating all sorts of new family milestones with our new friends and kiddies in our family photo branch – It’s going to be a GREAT year. I can feel it!

And thanks to YOU for sharing the love! A portion of my business is from random online resources and marketing, but most of my new business comes from referrals from the couples and families that I’ve previously worked with… and that means the world to me! I’d rather have that over a fancy marketing campaign any day. You guys make my job totally fun… so keep on sending me your awesome friends!! (I dig them.)

That’s all I’ve got for now. Just wanted to celebrate the small victories with you too!
Happy Wednesday! Until next time…
audgeSIG
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Baby Olive | Newborn | Atlanta, GA

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Yep, this photo right here is proof at how behind I am on blogging. (*insert sheepish grin here*) The Christmas decor is a total giveaway! I ran into baby Olive this past weekend and realized how much of a non-newborn she is now – two months went by WAY too fast! I was so honored to be a part of her meeting her family in the hospital for the first time, and then got to photograph her with her main crew once they got back to their crib… she really is a total doll baby. I’m a fan of her.

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There’s nothing better than watching brand new parents with their new babies… it brings back so many great memories. It’s such a special time that sneaks away way too quickly… it always reminds me to hug my babies a little longer once I get back home.

Oh, and Kyle loved making fun of Olive. Naturally.

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And then… this happened. Sibling snuggle fest. When they first told me they wanted to swaddle their dogs and do a picture with them too, I started laughing… and then I was like, “Oh, we’re totally doing this. Alright!” These dogs were way too cool with being swaddled, I’ve never seen anything quite like it. Now, I show you… the greatest photo from a newborn session that ever was. EVER.
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Hah! We are SO so thrilled for Kyle+Aida and love that little baby Olive has joined their crew… Congratulations you guys! You make totally cute babies. Keep up the good work. 😉

Until next time…

audgeSIG

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L O V E G I V E S W A Y | serenity’s steps

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“The Wedding Industry” is this giant umbrella term that means so many different things to so many different people. As a wedding photographer, I am a small slice of that pie for a handful of couples every year, and it truly is an honor to play a role in such a monumental moment for them. There are SO. MANY. PARTS. that go into planning a wedding, so many different directions you can take it. But what if you could use your one day to help someone else’s everyday?

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I am SO excited to announce that I’ve partnered with Love Gives Way, and now YOU have the chance to leverage your wedding day to help those men and women in the commercial sex industry. Love Gives Way is a collective group of wedding vendors from all different fields rallying around the cause of ending sex trafficking and the commercial sex industry. Not only are these LGW wedding vendors bringing awareness of the issues to their brides and grooms, but they’re providing a hands-on way for their couples to partner with them and contribute financially to various non-profits and organizations fighting for the cause.

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The hubbs and I have gotten involved with a ministry called Serenity’s Steps who works right here in our own Atlanta neighborhoods. As for what they do?

For women who have been marred by sexual exploitation, decisions made in desperation can leave them feeling paralyzed with no way out.

What many would consider normal life options simply seem out of reach for these women. They lack employment, family support, life skills and self worth.

Serenity’s Steps helps women step out of the sex industry.

Y’all. We’ve befriended Leroy+Janelle over the last year or so… They are the REAL DEAL. Jesus calls us to love radically. To meet people right where they are, no matter how scary that place may be, and to help them. Bring them the good news. These guys are doing just that.

Serenity’s Steps began in 2006 as the desire of two families to bring hope to a desolate corner in their Southwest Atlanta neighborhood. With a Coleman camping grill, a card table and Ball Park hot dogs, these two families invited their neighbors to share in a meal and good fellowship. One result of these gatherings was the development of deep, meaningful friendships with several women involved in street prostitution. Out of these relationships and a desire to provide these women with resources to leave the sex industry, Serenity’s Steps was created to provide a customizable plan for each woman that treats her with dignity and value and assists her in moving forward with her life.

They also have a paper-making company called That Grace Restored, which uses old discarded paper that nobody wants, repurposes it, and turns it into this beautifully unique handmade paper. They use this paper to create handmade journals, letterpress prints, and pretty soon (*brace yourselves*) WEDDING INVITATIONS! (Yeah, I said it!) This is a business they use to employ some of these women and help them gain work experience, training and skills, all while providing income for them and their families. While it’s not a fix-all, it’s a huge step in the right direction. You can check out their goods in their Etsy shop, and check in regularly! They’re going to be brewing up all sorts of new items!

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I hope you guys are just as excited about getting involved as I am! So what does this look like for you? When you fill out a contact form to inquire about your wedding, you’ll receive a Wedding Pricing Guide. There are labeled “Love Gives Way” packages to choose from, and if you select one of these for your wedding day then 10% of your wedding photography package will go straight to Serenity’s Steps. Talk about easy! If you’re anything like we were, you might have a lot of questions or want to know more… so feel free to ask away! If I know the answers, I’ll give them to you. If I don’t, I can definitely point you in the right direction. Also, if you’re still looking for other wedding vendors to complete your wedding day A-team, you can check out Love Gives Way’s list of participating wedding vendors and keep up the giving!

I can’t think of a better way to honor and celebrate love than that. Here’s to you! And Him. And her.

xoxo

audgeSIG

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Baby Charlie | Newborn | Atlanta, GA

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I remember all to well the feeling of leaving the hospital with our first baby. It was oddly exhilarating and terrifying all at the same time… looking in the backseat and seeing a carseat with a real human being in it. And I was also kind of like, “Wait… They know I’m taking this thing with me, right?? Like, am I good??” It’s something you dream about for nine months, and when it actually happens it seems so surreal! There’s nothing quite like it. And every single thing they do is the greatest thing you’ve ever see anybody in the world do… these tiny little people have such power over us and they don’t even know it!

Katy+Parker just welcomed their first little bundle, baby Charlie, and he was such a little doll baby! He had such a sweet little demeanor, and you could just feel the love all over the place. Some of my favorite moments were watching mom+dad doting on him… it doesn’t get any realer than that. They’ve also got some preeeeetty stellar style. (Which you can see for yourself over Katy’s blog All Sorts of Pretty) Charlie is going to be one sharp little gentleman! (As if the classy crocheted suspendered pants weren’t a dead giveaway!) I am SO so happy for these guys, and it truly was an honor to be a part of such a sweet (and short!) season of their lives. Each baby season is fun and challenging in it’s own way, but there’s nothing quite like the newborn season… ahh, sweet little snuggle babies! Alright, baby Charlie… take it away!

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