Archive for November, 2010

Robert Bowen Photography

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

22 years of experience make Robert Bowen an amazing wedding photographer, but it’s his enthusiastic, fresh approach to the uniqueness of each and every wedding and his video photographer’s eye that sets him apart.

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Robert’s brother Bill owns Suburban Video, and his other brother Thomas owns Thomas Bowen Films. 24 years ago, Robert began working with Bill at Suburban Video. Filming several weddings a weekend taught Robert how to unobtrusively capture the essence of a wedding day with all its joy and poignancy on film. After a couple years working with his brothers, he was inspired to set off on his own in photography, earning a degree at the New York Institute.

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Applying his technical skill and creativity as a photographer to the creative bones he learned as a videographer results in something truly special. Recently, Robert told us that he treats each wedding as a blank canvas. While he knows that there are the shots he’s going to take, such as the cake cutting and the first dance, there are other moving, spectacular instances. Those singular, sparkling moments reveal themselves as the day progresses and are included in the photographic scene he is documenting.

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Robert says what he learned most as a videographer, panning past the crowd during the first dance with the bride and groom on the foreground or as the bride prepares to walk down the aisle, is that the precise moment to capture on film will come with no coaching or staging necessary. As such, he focuses on his first priority – thrilling his clients with pictures that echo the feelings they experienced that day. After the wedding, all that is left are memories and the pictures he takes, so Robert pours all his energy into producing authentic, emotive, crisp, and beautiful photos for his couples to cherish for years to come.

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

He isn’t exaggerating! We’ve seen him moving nonstop, working hard to ensure he doesn’t miss a thing, and his images speak for themselves. Robert’s professionalism and commitment to his clients make him a pleasure to work with, and we’re always excited to see him on our client’s wedding day.

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Image by Robert Bowen Photography

Newton White Mansion Set Up

Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010

If you’re planning a wedding in Washington, DC and are looking for a historic venue, you’re in the right city!

Built in 1939 and just outside of Washington, DC in Mitchellville, Maryland, Newton White Mansion is a picturesque site for a wedding. Like most historic wedding venues in the area, there’s enough space to host your wedding indoors, outdoors, or a combination of both.

One of the biggest pluses of Newton White Mansion is its huge patio – ideal for an outdoor ceremony. We were there recently and, using our peerless wireless Bose speakers and expertise, provided crystal clear sound!

Check out our speaker and equipment placement below.

Newton White Mansion

Wedding Ceremony, Newton White Mansion, Chris Laich Music Services equipment set up

Newton White Mansion

Wedding Ceremony, Newton White Mansion, Chris Laich Music Services equipment set up

What Did Jackie and JFK Dance To On Their Wedding day?

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

Jackie Kennedy is a style touchstone for many brides as they shop for their wedding gowns.

But have you ever wondered what song she and President John F. Kennedy chose for their first dance?

Jackie and John Kennedy

Jackie and John F. Kennedy on their wedding day

Performed by Meyer Davis and his orchestra, they danced to “I Married an Angel.”

We couldn’t find the version the Kennedys danced to anywhere, but this jazz interpretation by Nat Adderly is very romantic:

For more details on Jackie and John F. Kennedy’s wedding, visit here.


St. Regis: Astor Terrace Ceremony Set Up

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

Other than the staff and location, one of our favorite things about the St. Regis in Washington, DC as a wedding venue is the Astor Terrace. All towering trees, crisp flagstone, and natural light, it’s a lovely place for a wedding ceremony.

At the St. Regis a few weeks ago, we snapped a picture of the Astor Terrace set up for our client’s ceremony. In such an elegant space, we had to make sure our Bose wireless speakers were out of sight but definitely not out of earshot!

st regis 1

Wedding Ceremony, Astor Terrace, St. Regis Washington DC, Chris Laich Music Services equipment set up

Raspberry Plain Set Up

Thursday, November 11th, 2010

When you envision your wedding day, do you picture gorgeous cathedral ceilings and a room filled with tons of natural light? A historical setting with lovely grounds and mountain views? Raspberry Plain has stood in Leesburg, Virginia since 1771 and is a spectacular historic venue for weddings.

One of the great things about these historic homes with extensive grounds is the fact that, weather permitting or tented, you can have your ceremony, cocktails, and reception in almost any setting indoors or outdoors.

Chris Laich Music Services was at Raspberry Plain recently for a wedding with both an outdoor and indoor reception, and it was amazing! There was a great outside lounge area, and the reception was in the Grand Observatory. With the combination of outdoor/indoor settings, there are a few challenges when providing the music!

Our priority is always making our clients happy, and that includes not affecting the look of their wedding day and giving them and their guests the best sound and experience possible! So, using our wireless Bose speakers and our expertise, we set up our equipment at Raspberry Plain to achieve both.


Raspberry Plain

Chris Laich Music Services at Raspberry Plain, Leesburg Virgina

For more Chris Laich Music Services Washington DC event space set-ups, visit here!

John Farr Lighting

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

Imagine your wedding venue as a blank canvas. What vibe do you want to give your guests when they arrive and help you celebrate the night away? Of course, décor leaps to mind, and one of the most dramatic transformations you can make is lighting!

We’ve seen John Farr and his company, John Farr Lighting Design, turn an ordinary space into an extraordinary one with well placed uplighting and amazing gobo lights that do more than just illuminate initials on the dance floor – they can project texture like lace and palm trees on the walls and ceiling! Watching John and his team work their magic is truly something to behold.

Lighting by John Farr Lighting, image by Robert Isacson

Hotel Monaco, lighting by John Farr Lighting Design, image by Robert Isacson

John used to tour with and handle lighting for names like Rick James and Hall and Oates, and in 1988, he was traveling with Gladys Knight. In fact, it was July 1, 1988 when he was here in DC when he started talking to some guys from the DC Fire Department and found out they were hiring. By December that year, he had stopped touring and was working as an EMT for DCFD, and doing lighting on his days off!

In 2003, he was assigned to the day shift, but his lighting business on the side was taking off. Since he was riding the truck during the day, he couldn’t help his lighting clients, so he threw himself into the lighting business full time and hasn’t looked back.

We’re glad he did because he’s a pleasure to work with. His years delivering babies and saving lives has given him a perspective that keeps him stress-free and happy on wedding day set-ups. He’s a firm believer that weddings are times of joy and that we should all have fun, even if we’re there to work. It’s a day for all to celebrate, and there’s very little on a day like that to get bent out of shape about.

John also recently told us he’s a firm believer in not gouging his customers, which all of us at Chris Laich Music Services couldn’t agree with more. When his brides and grooms make lighting requests, if John feels it’s not necessary, he’ll tell them and ask them to reconsider since they’d just be wasting their money.

Lighting by John Farr Lighting, image by Robert Isacson

Hotel Monaco, lighting by John Farr Lighting, image by Robert Isacson

Back in the ‘70s, when he was a kid doing lighting for local bands in his hometown of Erie, PA, bands used to do what’s called a show set and a dancing set. He and the band would come up with choreographed scenes for the show set that combined the music, moves lighting, and special effects for a real showstopper. He’d love to do that for a wedding! Can you imagine a lighting scheme that evolves and changes during the first dance, along with special effects to make it seem as though the couple is floating on a cloud?

Sounds pretty amazing, right? So, if you’re looking for some extra magic and wow factor on your wedding day, lighting might just be the thing!

Lansdowne Resort Set up

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

When you think resort, you probably think someplace tropical and exotic, right?  Did you know we have a resort right here in the Washington, DC area?

It’s got incredible golf courses, Virginia Wine Country, and a full service spa, and it is also the perfect place for a wedding.  The Lansdowne Resort is a fantastic, four diamond resort in Leesburg, Virginia, with wonderful grounds.  All of which means some really great spaces for a wedding, as well as accommodations for your guests.

Chris Laich Music Services was at the Lansdowne Resort recently for a wedding with an outdoor ceremony.  To make sure the guests could hear every word, instead of spreading bulky speakers all over such a lovely natural setting, we used a few of our inconspicuous wireless Bose speakers (see images below) to provide optimal sound!

lansdowne 3

Lansdowne Resort wedding ceremony, Chris Laich Music Services equipment set up

lansdowne 1

Lansdowne Resort wedding ceremony, Chris Laich Music Services equipment set up

lansdowne 2

Lansdowne Resort wedding Ceremony, Chris Laich Music Services equipment set up

Washington DC Wedding Photorgrapher Resource

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

We recently came across an interesting Washington, DC (and even nationwide) wedding photography resource – Best of Wedding Photography.

The site is an invitation-only photographer resource.  Of course, our first question was, who decides what photographers are invited? According to the Best of Wedding Photography site, they use a:

“Best of Wedding Photography employs a unique system of peer-review to ensure that membership standards remain uncommonly high. We look for photographers who are leaders in the field – both in terms of the quality and style of imagery they produce and their level of success and recognition by brides, fellow photographers, and others in the wedding industry.”

Potential Best of Wedding Photography wedding photographers are voted on by a panel, and those accessed are then listed on the Best of Wedding Photography site.

There are a lot of wedding vendor resource sites out there, and with everything couples pour into their wedding day, it’s worth exploring available credible information on the vendors they choose.  This is why we thought we’d pass Best of Wedding Photography on!

You can read more about their selection process and recommended Washington,DC wedding photographers here.