When Todd Surber's parents incorrectly loaded film into their camera on the day of his high-school graduation, they left their son without any pictures to document his achievement. These days, at King Street Studios, Todd ensures that similar special moments are never lost for his clients. He snaps shots of families, weddings, clown troupes, and high-school seniors with a photojournalistic style honed from touring with top rock bands such as Papa Roach. After sessions on location or in Todd’s 1,500-square-foot boutique studio, patrons can choose their most beloved memories in an online proofing gallery of retouched color or black-and-white images. Todd also invites customers to view their canvas portraits in the studio’s projection room so they can see how the pictures will appear when enlarged to their appropriate size.
When Jeni Rone was a child, her father would take black-and-white photos of weddings, instilling an appreciation for beautiful photography in her mind that she nurtured through fine-arts classes in high school and college. Now, she spends her days amongst Charleston's natural and manmade beauty, creating beautifully framed photos of seaside sunsets and historic houses. Specializing in wedding photography, Rone's practiced eye captures the joy and possibility of nuptials with smile-filled candids, elegantly composed family shots, and cakes' growing dread as they realize their role in the festivities. Those interested in improving their own photography can tap into her skills by following along on classes that meander through Charleston's streets, learning how to frame up gorgeous shots and edit them on a computer.
Natural settings such as windswept beaches are the backdrop of shots captured by the photographers at InspireMe Photography. They train their camera lenses on families, kids, couples, high-school seniors, newborns, and weddings, and offer custom packages.
The six women who perform hair, makeup, and wardrobe styling for FashionShots are truly an elite team: among them, their work has been featured in Vogue, on E!, at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, and in Modern Salon magazine. Their impressive skill enables them to work on a variety of projects, from senior photos and boudoir shoots to headshots for aspiring models and commercial work.
Whatever the project, the complete hair-makeup-and-wardrobe experience is designed to make each client feel like a model for a day. Subjects will prep for their shoot by reviewing a Mood Board, an email from the photographer with suggestions for outfits, hair styles, and makeup. The day of, clients bring in 3-5 complete outfits, and will then be coached through the shoot by a photographer who is also a former model. Afterward, subjects will go through the images with the photographer, selecting their favorites for complete retouching and printing.
Coming to photography after an eclectic career that has seen him earn a PhD in biblical theology and win a Computerworld Smithsonian medal for contributions to technology, Falcon—The House of NyghtFalcon's founder and head photographer—specializes in emotionally powerful, naturally lit photos that reveal unseen perspectives in familiar sights. His handpicked photographic associates undergo three years of apprenticeship before donning the mantle of full partner. Basic and advanced seminars mix photographic theory with hands-on learning, teaching students how to master cameras' arcane functions, frame shots, and determine the shutter speed at which time folds back in on itself.