I’m very happy to be sharing with you, dear reader, the photography of a sweet friend. Olivia Rae James is a photographer working out of Charleston, SC, in a variety of specialties: weddings, lifestyle, and food. She’s collaborated with a bevy of business doing interesting things in the Southeast, from salt-works to indie jewelers and everything in between. What I think makes Olivia’s photography special is her ability to evoke narrative even in commercial projects, and her ability to relax and connect with her subjects.
I always say that Olivia could make changing a flat tire look like something you’d rather be doing right now. She’s skilled at finding sublime beauty and using that to create a story for her clients. Whether it’s a visit to Poppins Posies field, a meandering around a saltworks, or a vibrant family brunch, I know what it feels like to be there. And dangit, it feels pretty nice.
The personality of a portraiture photographer is equally important as their technical skill; it’s no use shooting beautiful photos if your subjects look stiff and uncomfortable. Olivia’s warm friendliness surely helps draw out her subject’s best selves.
I think this shot from an engagement series is just so clever: you’re gazing from the outside in on an intimate moment. The couple, as they are in real life.
I may have mentioned it before, but I can’t stand overly-dramatic engagement photos where people look nice but not in love. Olivia does a great job of capturing some more natural moments.