Lauryn Schalk is the owner and photographer behind Photography by Lauryn, the photographer that lets light shine and color breathe.
Tell us about you and your story.What is your background and how did you find your way to the wedding industry?
I've always wanted to be a photographer. Growing up, I found myself drawn to the creative jobs, but dad said no. So I went to school for what I believed was the closest you can get to creativity while still being in business: Marketing and Advertising. After two years in the industry and doing the whole "adulting" thing on my own, I decided to dive head first into my business after building it on the side since 2010. It was a "do it now or regret it forever" kind of move. That was 2014. I've never looked back. Luckily, Dad is happy that my degree is being used in my business and he learned that I don't accept no for an answer.
Share a little bit about Photography by Lauryn's history.When did Photography by Lauryn launch? What are you known for?
My photography business has been around since 2010. I photographed my first wedding in 2012, reluctantly. It was for my Uncle and I mean it when I say I wanted to avoid weddings at all costs. But I was sucked in REAL quick! I started second shooting for photographers while I finished my degree and in 2014, I started shooting weddings as a lead photographer. Now, I only offer photography services for couples and wedding events. There are two things that I like to think I'm known for. One is my unique editing style that combines light and airy with colorful and vibrant. I like to say that my images allow light to shine and color to breathe. Most often, when you find a light and airy photographer, colors can be muted. When you find a vibrant and color photographer, it can be more contrasty. If I'm speaking French to you, I apologize. My point is, I melded and developed an editing style that is mine and mine alone. Another facet of my style and work is my ability to capture authenticity with my couples. Please don't ask me to pose you popping out from behind a tree. That ain't my style man. I build relationships with my couples from the moment they book up until the wedding day and beyond. This allows them to feel at ease in front of my camera so that I can break down walls that allows them to show their true laugh and love together.
What sets you and Photography by Lauryn apart?What's your secret sauce? What makes you different from everyone else?
Can I say that my secret sauce is me? Really though. I bring to the table my own cornucopia of skills, expertise, experience and personality. That's kind of a cookie cutter answer, so let me dive deeper. Somehow, maybe ask my mother, but I have this innate ability to connect to people very easily. I am able to find points of connection between the bride and me, the groom and me and I build on that and that alone. I create a relationship with my clients that aren't just "vendor-client". When you have someone photographing you that has become a friend, you are able to trust. You are able to be comfortable. You can relax. Now please don't get it twisted and go hire a friend to photograph your wedding. You still need a pro. But I'm that pro that is also your friend.
Tell us about your ideal couple.Tell us about the type of couple that really clicks with you and your company.
My ideal client is someone who isn't someone who is afraid to show their love in their photos. I want the couples who laugh hard. The ones who are so comfortable in their skins to just, be. They also have a fun sense of humor. I post memes on my page weekly. Can I say you must love dogs, too? Dogs are a big part of my brand. Benny, my poochon, is my brand mascot and frequents the IG stories regularly. I also donate a portion of every wedding booked to a local rescue, Almost Home Foundation.
What is the best advice you have for couples currently planning their weddings?You've seen so many couples go through the planning process. Share your best pearl of wisdom for those just starting out with their planning.
Talk to your friends. It's so easy to hire a wedding vendor online, but really vet them. These are the people that make or break the logistics of your biggest day. Use your friend's recommendations and also, book vendors on more than just price and portfolio. Book them on the vibe you get when you talk to them. That's almost more important than anything else.
What's the ONE thing that couples shouldn't forget to ask potential wedding vendors?Spill! What's the single most important question that couples should ask before booking a vendor for their wedding?
How can you help us achieve our wedding day goals? The biggest thing my brides have told me is that the reason they don't book a certain vendor is because they talked about themselves too much and didn't bother asking about the wedding. So ask the vendor, what can you do for me?
Thanks for stopping by Lakeshore in Love, Lauryn!