First comes Photography, Then comes Love: Captured Journeys Photography

Captured Journeys Photography has recently been added to SnapKnot’s list of Washington, District of Columbia photographers.  This husband and wife team found each other through their love of photography and traveling, which blossomed into marriage.  Learn more about this traveling wedding photography duo and their journey!

1) Tell us a bit about yourself?

We are husband and wife team who are passionate about art and photography and love to have fun!

Kelly was born in California and grew up on the West Coast, then he followed family tradition and joined the US Navy, where he spent 30 years while traveling all over the world.  Kalina was born in Poland – Eastern Europe in a family of travelers and antique lovers.   After graduating from Silesian University with a Masters in Art Appreciation, she moved to the UK and then to the Kingdom of Bahrain where she subsequently met Kelly.

2) Why did you choose to become a photographer?

We are husband and wife Captured Journeys Photography team. When we met few years back in the Kingdom of Bahrain we were both passionate about travel photography.

As a flight attendant for one of the Middle Eastern airlines, Kalina was traveling the world and taking pictures of everything and everyone and Kelly, serving in the US Navy, traveling to the most remote villages of Afghanistan, Iraq and 27 others countries in the Middle East was taking pictures as a way of documenting his trips.   The love for travel and photography was only one of the things we discovered we have had in common.  Our friends and family pushed us to sell Kelly’s landscapes and we did.  After successfully selling prints, we decided to try to go PRO and joined the PPA and WPPI and then began capturing people!

3) How long have you been a photographer?

Kelly has been taking pictures for more than 25 years but professionally since 2005 and Kalina joined him in 2007.

4) How would you classify your style of photography?

Our style is a combination of modern and photojournalistic.  Although we still appreciate the serenity and beauty of traditional images and poses, we do very much like to be inventive by using different light sources and unusual angels.   Our photo shoots usually involve a lot of gymnastics, climbing trees, and using furniture to get really different perspectives.   We always end up bruised or scratched which is a testimony to our Passion.

5) Who or what are some of your influences on either a personal or professional level?

Kelly loves nature photography and got his inspiration from Ansell Adams, always tries to include part of available landscapes in his composition.  We like to study old masters such as Vermeer, Van Dyck and Rembrandt but also love to follow new trends in fashion photography, as we are fascinated with juxtaposition of the new and old, the gorgeous and ugly.  Recently, our focus is on manipulation of light – using it in just a way to capture the features of the human form.

6) Do you have any good wedding stories?

Each and every wedding is a story of its own… One of our first paid weddings has taken place in West Virginia. When we got the specified address we found out that the wedding ceremony and reception would take place in the back yard, which meant we really didn’t have much to work with, on the top of that the wind was blowing 60 miles per hour and we could hardly get a shot of the bride without a veil or hair in her face. Like that was not enough, all the catering dishes were taking off and everyone was focusing on catching the plates instead of posing for pictures. At the end the gazebo tent set up for the ceremony collapsed and knocked out our camera set on the tripod destroying our 28-70mm Nikon lens!  Every time we look at the images from that wedding we say to each other “remember that wedding…??”-  the pictures came out great and no one would have ever guessed what laid beneath!

7) What’s your preferred type of camera equipment?

We shoot only in digital format.  We use Nikon cameras as we feel the Pro level Nikon lens is a better product that that of Cannon.  Our next big purchase is going to be the Nikon D4!

8) What would you recommend for a couple just starting their search for a wedding photographer?

Looking for a wedding photographer is not an easy task.  There are so many thousands to choose from and you should not limit yourself to the local area.  Most photographers are willing to travel for your wedding and you would be surprised at how little extra it would take to get them there.   Start looking online using SnapKnot searches and other online resources.   Trust me, you will find more options than you can imagine!

The most important aspect in deciding your photographer is the quality level of the images.  Hundreds of photographers, using inexpensive cameras and gear, are ready to shoot your wedding for very little money. Make sure you understand what that money will bring the day after your special day.   Look for photographers that are recognized in their field through awards and other recognition.  Ask is they are members of any professional photography associations or if they are “CERTIFIED” as a professional.

Second but just as important as quality of their work is, do you “get along”? There will be no one that you will spend more time with on your wedding day than the photographers and so you really need to feel a connection with them – it makes your day that much more special and your images will show it.

Depending on the size of your wedding, you may need more than one photographer (50 or less, 1 photographers is sufficient).  Many great photographer businesses are husband and wife teams and the cost is about the same as that of only getting one photographer!   Think about the different views two photographers will capture as opposed to only one!

Finally, price.  We believe that many photographers out there are charging far too little and some are far too high for the same service.  We believe the best process is to find the quality photographers, look at their package prices, and then rank them in order of preference and then call them/contact them and meet with them.  If you can’t meet in person, try SKYPE or other service and if you can’t do any of this, call the photographer and talk with them.   What you want to do is get a “feel” of the photographer.   After you do this for your TOP 3-5, rank them again and make a selection!  (This is all based on they are available on your special day!).

9) Any fun personal facts we should know about you?

Kelly lives on cereal and energy drinks and while listening to music he likes to pretend that he is a drummer!  His favorite celebrity is Jennifer Anniston, so if you look like her even a little bit he will most likely give you a discount.

Kalina loves interior design and therefore she would rearrange one of the rooms in their house almost every Sunday.

We both love to jet ski and drink Margaritas at the Tiki bar along the Potomac River.  We have two kids Coffee (a beagle) and Pinky (Schnauzer mix) who just like us believe they are human :)

Anything else to add about yourself, the wedding industry, photography, brides, grooms, etc.

So many things come together on the day of a wedding.   The flowers, the table cloths, glasses, people…  All must melt together into a perfect fitting mold that fits the dreams of the new bride.  The photographer’s goal is to accurate, and with passion, capture that coming together and the sparks that result from it.  It is like a supernova for us.  From the moment the bride starts preparing and the groom is laughing with his best buds to the end of the night, when everyone has tired faces from the smiles, red eyes from the tears, sore feet from the dancing….  It really is a long but wonderful day… And your photographers are with you capturing it all….

To see more from these traveling wedding photographers check out their website!

Leave a Comment