A Generational Family Session
November 17th, 2015



A few months ago we launched our new sessions called Generational Panoramics.  We felt the need for an updated version of the large family photo.  Paul has created a way to photograph each small family separately and then create a panoramic composite of all the groups together.  This very special family, whom we’ve photographed weddings and family sessions for in the past, decided it was time for a professional portrait of the entire family.  Well, one of the daughters, Brittany, decided for them and had to push pretty hard to get everyone together for this session.  It is definitely a feat to accomplish when we have to coordinate clothing, schedules and nap times.  But this final portrait with everyone together was worth every minute of it.

We spent about 2 hours in the studio and had fresh danishes and coffee while the music played and we photographed multiple special combinations.  In the end, Paul created this Panoramic of the entire family.  A 20 inch by 60 inch gallery wrapped canvas now hangs on Carrie’s (the grandmother’s) wall.  We’re finishing up her album which includes all the individual and small group images, so we’ll be excited to share that soon too.

For our families reading today’s post, please consider while your extended families are coming in for the holidays, to encourage them that this is important and incredibly special.  Call the studio, and we’ll be happy to share all the details and help you start coordinating!

Brittany, Carrie, Morgan and Prentiss… thank you for allowing us this honor, and bravo on the adorable wardrobe choices.  We love your family!


A Short Personal Note… from Paul
November 16th, 2015



We didn’t have a post planned for today, but I (Paul) felt compelled to share this, so I stayed up last night and wrote this…

I’m not sure where this will end up, but I’m going to start with last Wednesday afternoon.  I went to visit my grandmother, Gramma Rosie’s, grave.  It was an unplanned visit, but I was close so I stopped by.  The sun was getting low and the heat of a November in Florida was beginning to let up.  The most amazing thing happened when I pulled up – the sun was moving quickly at this point, and I literally watched as the shadows shifted to highlight one headstone.  One headstone caught and reflected the last light of the day as the rest of the cemetery fell into shadow.  As I get older there is a word I use less and less – “coincidence”.

I’m so thankful for that little gift, especially as it was approaching the second date you see on the stone.  But last night, on the eve of this anniversary, as I looked back through the few pictures I took I was struck by the verse written on the headstone.  In the wake of these attacks in France we will find a sense of strength in having the biggest military and smartest generals, fighting the big evil and keeping us safe.  But what about the small things, the personal battles?  When you don’t have the biggest army and the smartest leaders?  That’s where this verse carries the most weight.  I find an incredible sense of peace to know I don’t have to rely on my own strength.  There is strength and there is hope if you know where to look for it.



Author Autumn Doughton
November 13th, 2015

I (Paul) was approached by the Village Journal to photograph local author Autumn Doughton for the cover story in the summer issue. The location was a vintage library in downtown Gainesville, and I had been warned that the vintage theme of the library included a 70’s feel and no air conditioning. So I donned my standard black on black outfit (note: photographers wear black to hide sweat and dirt. And to look really cool) and loaded up the truck. Alyson (my assistant) and I arrived bright and early to load in, and sure enough, it was pretty warm in there. With a promise to get warmer. The feel of the shoot was to be rooted in a 70’s vibe to correspond with the library, while the clothing would add a modern touch. Channing and Kilty, the force behind the Village Journal, had sourced clothing, Kara Winslow as MUA extraordinaire, Donnie Lancaster was hair master. This is my kind of shoot. Sometimes the importance of the team is overlooked in commercial photography, but it takes a team, and we had a good one.

Now I’m going to get technical for a minute, for any nerdy photographers out there. This first scene was lit with a beauty dish as the backlight, and I believe a 4×6 softbox as front fill. I use Paul C. Buff lighting and RadioPoppers as triggers. This combo gives me complete freedom to adjust light output on the fly, so my assistant can stay comfy in her chair. Just kidding, I actually have her running around moving c-stands and reflectors on a consistent basis.

And she models for me…

GI1A9795 copy

I tried to keep the warm yellowish tint from the tungsten lights in the foreground and background to keep up the vintage look.

Autumn-0006 copy

After the first clothing change, I decided I wanted to get Autumn talking. She had never been in front of the camera like this, but she was already rocking it. I put her in front of a book case, lit her with a 4’x6’ softbox, and she took it from there. Her energy was natural and contagious.

Autumn-0030 copy

The next set was tricky. How do I photograph her from directly overhead without risking crushing her? Well, that was a risk we would just have to take. It wasn’t that bad, but it was precarious. Definitely worth it.

Autumn-0044 copy

This clothing change allowed me to dig a little deeper into the 70’s vibe. I shot 2 softboxes through the bookcase to mimic sunlight shining through.

Autumn-0057 copy

I used natural light coming in the front window, which was only partially blocked by patrons of the library peering in wondering why they weren’t open yet…

Autumn-0072 copy

Autumn-0065bw copy

Just for fun we went outside and took a few.

Autumn-0083 copy

I had a blast with this shoot, had a great team, looking forward to the next time. Oh, and as we were loading out, ready to leave, one of the employees walked in and said, “Wow, you guys didn’t turn on the AC?”


A Special Veteran
November 11th, 2015

Brasher ArdIn honor of Veteran’s Day, we wanted to share this special image.  My (Kristin’s) grandfather on my dad’s side fought in World War 2.  In this image, you’ll see him standing to the far right, waiting to be given a Purple Heart.  He was injured during the war while driving a tank and the weapon backfired.  But Lord willing he survived and lived many years after.  Papa died when I was just about a year old, so sadly I don’t remember him.  But my Granny lived on another thirty plus years and raised 4 generations of children.  His name was Brasher whom our youngest son is named after.

Thank you to all of our Veteran’s Day for how much you love your families and our country.


A Printing Revolution?
November 10th, 2015

As Paul and I (Kristin) prep for speaking at Professional Photographers of America’s national convention, we’re getting asked a lot of questions by PPA and other photographers as they try to discover why and how we’ve grown our studio.  It often surprises other photographers at how we do things, which in turn has surprised me that they’re surprised… does that make sense?

Paul and I just do what we think is right and best for our clients, and we’re blessed to say we’re still in business and supporting our family with our dream jobs.  But it has made me ask the question, “Why do we do things this way?”

It’s a funny point in your life where you can say you’ve seen trends come and go.  We’ve now been in business long enough that we’ve seen cycles and change.  I must admit that several years ago we battled with potential clients on the issue of digital files.  All of you reading this who are our clients know that we’re incredibly passionate and picky about how our work gets printed.  Do we sell the files?  Yes, however, our clients only sometimes buy them, but they always get their images printed. When a bride walks in our door now, she wants her book.  She’s heard of them and she knows we’re obsessed with them.  Sometimes the digital files are brought up, but honestly, more often than not the files don’t get mentioned until after the book is done.  Why this change?  Why now are we not fighting and begging to convince our clients that printing their story is important?

A few weeks ago I was delivering a stunning custom-framed wall portrait to a bride.  The portrait was an engagement session image that she would display behind her cake table.  The image was a soft backlit image, almost silhouette, of her and her fiancé snuggled close.  She loved it because she felt like the emphasis was not just on her, but on the moment.  As I pulled it out of the frame bag, her sister in law was standing beside us and gasped.  She said, “Oh Emily.  It’s beautiful.  I don’t have anything like that printed from my wedding.”

THIS is why we do what we do!  We’ve never given up on the issue that our clients’ stories deserve to be printed.  And now we’re seeing a change.  I’ve heard my new clients say over and again, “I’ve been told I just need to get something.”  That blows my mind!  Of course you should get something!  But what’s happening is people are now realizing that the files aren’t something.  So, does that make them nothing?

I challenge the wedding websites to consider that the message of the digital files being the “must have” product may not be the best message for their readers.  Again, do I think it should be an option… sure.  But consider encouraging them to also value their story enough to have it printed as well?

So what is the cycle I’m seeing?  There’s now been enough brides, who have nothing printed from their wedding, telling new brides that they should get something real.  Is this just happening in my area?  Is it because we’re a smaller town where you see change sooner?  Perhaps.  But I suspect that this cycle is starting to happen in markets everywhere.  And while it’s already happening in the wedding market, I’m now starting to see it happen with our portrait clients too.  If I were to explain why I believe this “printing revolution” has begun… perhaps we’re starting to realize our stories and our moments have more value than we’ve been giving them.


A Positano Adventure
November 6th, 2015

I’ve used the above picture to set the scene… we are leaving beautiful Positano on the Amalfi coast.  We spent a glorious week there just soaking in the beauty that surrounded us.  I (Paul) was driving us to our next spot, Camaiore, through the mountain roads that would be considered treacherous and unsafe here in the states.

We discovered earlier on the trip as we were winding through the mountains of Northern Italy that our 7 year old, Win, gets car sick when he is reading or watching a movie while the car is flying around switchbacks in the Alps.  So on this mountainous descent we instructed the boys to enjoy the view and we would watch a movie on the iPad when we got to the bottom of the mountains.  About 3/4 of the way down Brasher, our 4 year old, said in a weak little voice, “Daddy, I don’t feel good”.  I quickly slowed down and started taking the endless curves a little bit slower.  Understand that when you slow down on these roads you immediately create a line of angry Italians behind you.  But I did what I had to do.

We finally got the the bottom, into Naples, where it smooths out.  Which is where Brasher said in that weak little voice, “Daddy, I’m going to throw up”.  Now on this part of the road, there are no exits, no sidewalks, no gas stations, basically nowhere to pull over.  There was a 4 foot stone wall immediately to my right, and no break in the line of traffic going the opposite direction.  I frantically looked at Kristin, who immediately searched for something that would hold liquid.  She found an empty cereal box and quickly handed it to Brasher, who immediately threw up in it.  Have you ever seen what happens if cardboard is left out in the rain?  Yeah, the same thing happens when a child throws up on it.  It falls apart.  Like, right away.  So there we are, flying through Naples trying to find a place to pull over, Brasher is throwing up in a box that is leaking it out just as fast.  We finally pulled over at a little gas station, pulled the poor little guy out, and started the clean up process.  The cleanup involved a lot of gagging and disgust and bursts of laughter as we surveyed our scene.

Here we are on the side of the road in Naples, our son is standing in his underwear, luggage scattered around, cars flying by a few feet away, and we are considering just throwing his carseat in the nearby dumpster.  I’ve included a picture that isn’t for the weak of stomach, but helps tell the story.  Ahhh, memories…


When is Christmas music allowed to start playing?
November 5th, 2015

It’s a running joke in my (Kristin’s) family of when it’s “appropriate” to start playing Christmas music.  My middle sister, Kelly, would happily put Perry Como on repeat beginning in September. While I always fought to hold off until after Thanksgiving.  No… I’m not a scrooge.  I just feel that after 30 days of holiday jingles, it can become a bit, well, let’s say… painful?

Ok, so I sound a big scrooge-ish, but I’m sincerely not!  While I’m not condoning holiday music to start yet, I am excited to see all of our families during the holiday season.  While Family Portrait Month is now over (and we raised $1575 for the Children’s Advocacy Center!), we are gearing up for the cool weather and the perfect month for family sessions.  Our hopes is each is that our families schedule their sessions in November through the first week of December so that we have plenty of time to get your portraits and gifts back before the holidays.  I may be slightly biased, but I think a portrait of a child or your family is the best gift you can give.

Call us today and we’ll set a date!  We’re excited to see everyone. And if you request Christmas music to be playing during your session, I’ll absolutely oblige.  :)


Love these girls!  Happy holidays everyone!




Today is a Tribute – November 3rd, 1992
November 3rd, 2015

KatieFootstoneToday is a special, yet bittersweet day for the Privette family.  23 years ago, Paul had a baby sister born.  Each day, Paul’s mom, dad, and at that point there were 5 children, all came up to hospital to sit with Katie.  The precious newborn’s heart was not functioning correctly and they didn’t know if she’d ever leave the hospital.  For 68 days they enjoyed her, photographed her and prayed for her.  On November 3rd, 1992 Katie passed.

As an 8 year old little boy, someone handed Paul a polaroid camera.  As the quiet child you’d expect him to be, Paul walked around in the background taking pictures of his baby sister. Many of the images Paul took are now in an album that the family pulls out each year as we celebrate Katie’s short, but cherished life.  Now, the 7 children with their spouses and children, plus Nana and Pop, have a tribute dinner on both the day Katie was born and the day she passed.  I (Kristin) often wonder what the guests in the restaurant are thinking as our group of 27 laughs and cries and prays.  But these dinners are not the only time this family prays for Katie.  In every single prayer I’ve ever heard from Paul’s father, he references each child by name, including Katie.Katie120-(web)Some of you may have heard why we call our studio “Footstone”.  Because she died as an infant, Katie doesn’t have a headstone at her grave, she has a Footstone.  We owe this beloved name to Paul’s oldest brother Robert, who started Footstone Design a few years before we opened Footstone Photography.

So today we’re celebrating our family and the life we’ve been given.


An Ethereal Thomas Center Wedding
October 30th, 2015

I (Kristin) can’t even begin to express the respect I have for this couple and their families.  The joy and love that they all exude is incredibly special.  Amber’s mom and dad, Stephanie and Lance, actually came just the two of them to meet me the first time.  Amber and Justin both live in Virginia and wouldn’t be visiting for a few more months.  Not often do I get the opportunity to meet our “MOB and FOB” first, but I must admit that we hit it off incredibly well almost instantly!  Amber had to trust her parents that they had found her a good photographer.  :)

We absolutely loved shooting Amber and Justin’s wedding at the Thomas Center in Gainesville, Florida.  The hard wood floors, the high ceilings and the beautiful architecture make for an incredible palette to capture gorgeous images. It also helps when the weather cooperates so wonderfully for an outdoor wedding.  Yet most importantly, Amber and Justin didn’t stop smiling the entire day.  Their families and friends were equally as joyful which made for fun and special moments from the beginning to end!

Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-001 Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-002

Isn’t she simply stunning?? I’m obsessed with this image.
Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-003 Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-004 Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-005

What an incredible wedging party to work with.  Seriously!  We had no trouble getting them to make Amber and Justin laugh pretty constantly, which makes for precious images.  Not to mention that they are a pretty good looking group.

Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-006Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-007 Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-008 Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-009 Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-010Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-011

I love how this moment started so sweet and romantic… and quickly turned into a smash-fest! There’s something to be said for the dainty sharing of a wedding cake, but you know a couple is truly comfortable with each other when they can just go for the face and come away laughing.  This was absolutely the WORST cake smash we’ve ever seen!Amber-Mackenzie-Sweet-Summer-Southern-Wedding-013

The images above are two of Paul’s favorites… this was Amber dancing with her Dad, and Justin dancing with his Mom.


Amber and Justin, we are so happy for you both, and are so honored you chose us to share in your special day.  We know you’re going to share an incredible life together!


Venue: The Historic Thomas Center

Caterer: Celebrations Catering

Flowers: The Plant Shoppe 

Brides to be… we would love to talk with you about your wedding photography.  Feel free to read our Frequently Asked Questions, and contact our studio to set up your consultation: website – photo@footstone.com – 352.562.3066


Family Portrait Month is almost over!
October 29th, 2015

We’re drawing near to the end of October (what!?), and we’re excited to say that 6 families have partnered with us for Family Portrait Month so far.  That’s incredible!  For every session that is booked in the month of October, the entire session fee will be donated to the Child Advocacy Center here in Gainesville, Florida.  If you’re unfamiliar with the CAC, you can read more about their mission and why we’re so dedicated to this organization.

Here’s the cool part, even if your session takes place at a later date, as long as you book your session before October comes to a close, your session fee will still be donated to the CAC!


If you have any questions about our partnership with the Child Advocacy Center, or to schedule your portrait session, please contact us:  website – photo@footstone.com – 352.562.3066