Junebug Weddings “Best of the Best” Engagement Photography Winner

I got amazing news last week! One of my images from Kimmy & Dennis’s downtown Fredericton engagement session was chosen from over 6000 entrants to be among 50 winners of the annual “Best of the Best” engagement photography contest hosted by Junebug Weddings.


Award-winning Fredericton engagement photography by Kandise Brown

The collection is a truly stunning set of images from photographers around the world (including Nordica Photography, who have shot André & I!), chosen by an amazingly accomplished quartet of successful and renowned photographers. This is my first proper peer-reviewed image award and it makes me proud.

Of course, almost immediately after discovering this news I read a response that basically said “awards are bullshit and will give you a huge ego and stifle your creativity and make your work look like everyone else’s”… (of course, the photographer who said this gives workshops…). But still. Ouch.

I’ve been ruminating on that for a week now. That photographer might be on to something: awards are a little bit bullshit for various reasons, and I’ve certainly been on the losing side of a competition more often than not.* For every photo in this collection, over a hundred more didn’t win, and I’m sure most of them were pretty great. (7 of the losers were mine as well.)

*literally every other time. *cough.*

When I first looked at this collection I felt like my image stuck out like a sore thumb. Part of that was probably imposter syndrome, and part of that was that it actually is different. You can see the faces of both subjects! The colours are vivid and the contrast is high! No spectacular landscapes or gorgeous light here, just a sidewalk in downtown Fredericton. I love the other images in the collection, but I never thought in a million years that one of my photos would be alongside them because of how off-trend my work can be. So not only am I proud, I’m reassured that us small-market, geologically-bereft photographers still have a chance. All it takes is a great client, some serendipity, and a true connection. Make ‘em laugh. Make pictures the way you want to want to make pictures, then risk rejection and keep submitting, because you never know.

(My ego IS huge now, though. They were right about that.)

Fredericton Wedding Photography: Megan & Steve

Earring admiration. Bratzoid. Picking up every leaf and twig in Odell Park with 50 pounds of tulle. A blind-folded, be-sunglassed first look by firing squad. Dodging disc-golfers during portraits. Ranking PDA. “You Are The Best Thing.” Mother-son choreography.

…and the flower girl “high-fived” me right in the crotch. It was a party.

Fredericton Wedding Photography

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Fredericton Engagement Photography: Jill & Dan

Jill & Dan made the drive from Moncton for their engagement shoot. I did the Fredericton Hospitality thing of taking them on a guided tour of some walking trails… we got 10,000 steps and just about as many laughs.

Fredericton Engagement Photography

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Month in Review: April 2015

AG & I finally broke the travel fast! After 3 (record-breaking?) consecutive months at home we finally couldn’t take it anymore, and hit the road to visit family in Moncton. This lovely trip was made even better by coinciding with the end of our Lent-inspired personal challenge to give up bread. That was a horrible idea and we’re never doing it again. (Bread, I’m sorry! I love you!)

… anyway, needless to say, we ate a lot of bread in April.

In April I once again had the pleasure of speaking to the photography students at NBCCD. It’s always weird for me to go from months of talking to my cat to talking to a group of humans, but I’m glad to have the opportunity. Another opportunity I was thrilled about was being able to witness baby Azalea in the hospital just after being born. I’m keen to do birth photography, if anyone out there has a pregnant woman to connect with me! I also shot Megan & Nathan’s laid-back downtown engagement shoot, and cleaned my office enough to develop and share some old Holga film photography!

As the weather creeps towards warm, we’ve started feeding the Fitbit again, getting near-daily long walks to shake off winter and get in shape for our honeymoon later this year. Not to mention wedding season! Which starts this week!



Psst… follow me in real time on Instagram.

Fredericton Photographer

Fredericton Engagement Photography: Megan & Nathan

It’s finally happening! The snow is nearly melted, the river runs high. Wedding season is just around the corner, and how better to get shake off the cobwebs than with a relaxed engagement shoot? We were due to have rain, but Megan & Nathan decided to make the trip from Moncton anyway. They came packing with umbrellas and rain gear… and we were rewarded with the only sunny hour of the day. We stomped around downtown Fredericton for the session, and I love what we captured. It’s going to be a good year.

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Film Flashback

As I’ve mentioned a time or two, I embarked on a majorly thorough cleaning of my office (and the rest of our space) over the winter. One of the things I found was 6 rolls of exposed film I barely remembered shooting. I packed them off to Richard Photo Lab, and got the scans back in lightning time — turns out they were vacation shots from our 2011 trips to New York City, Charleston/Myrtle Beach, Montreal, St. Martins, and Halifax! Since I also found a bunch of UNexposed film, seeing these has me wanting to bust out the Holga again. Those light leaks…!

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Welcoming Azalea

Birth photography is probably at the top of my “want to shoot” list right now. I’d hoped it would happen as little Azalea entered the world, but the thing about babies is they’re a liiiiiittle bit unpredictable. Even so, I feel fortunate to have captured some moments on her first day of life. I even got a snuggle and whiff of New Baby Smell! Welcome to the world, little one. There’s a big miracle packaged in that tiny body.

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Month in Review: March 2015

These long brutal winter months are finally – maybe? surely? – coming to an end. Jenn & Kyle made it look cute in their engagement session, but all the same I’m ready! I’ve certainly kept busy, between my off-season to-do list, making pretty huge progress on the great Office Clean, and doing taxes and all kinds of yoga. We celebrated AG’s birthday with beer, board games, and cake. Baseball is (almost) back, flowers are coming inside. I’ve got the itch to go outside.



March 2015 in Review | Kandise Brown

An Off-Season To-Do List for Photographers

Oh hello there.

There are still mountains of snow outside my window, and this has been one of the quietest winter seasons in recent memory, as our nasty stormy weather has crushed the spirit of myself and nearly everyone else. That said, I’m the master of “make work” projects and I can’t say that I’ve been bored! I’ve enjoyed having the occasion to really sit down and look at things from the inside and have the time to do those tasks that seem impossible in August.

Summer is coming, my friends, I promise! But maybe not for another 2-3 months, so here are some projects to keep a photographer busy:

  • albums: design and order new sample albums, photograph them, update album info guide for clients
  • client communications: review and create/update canned emails, contracts, session information guides, timeline worksheets & questionnaires, etc; re-evaluate your workflow to make sure it’s consistent with how you actually work/connect with clients; achieve inbox zero and keep it that way
  • computer: clean up your system, update software and applications, backup presets and scripts
  • gear: clean or send away for maintenance, record your serial numbers somewhere safe (I use Lenstag), update firmware, consider selling things you’re not using
  • office/studio: clean! it! out!: read and discard your hoarded industry magazines, shred unneeded documents, organize your receipts and bookkeeping, etc.; it’s tax season so make sure you’re on the ball with that, too!
  • photography: is there something you’ve been dying to shoot? try to make it happen! submit work for publication consideration, share your work on social media, book things like massages and biz travel in advance
  • product packaging/stationery: re-evaluate it, order inventory, prepare/assemble anything you can do in advance
  • website/portfolio: update, maybe re-edit images if necessary if your style has changed, check links (especially for press features), catch up on blogging sessions
  • workshops: watch/do them!
  • and finally… personal: Enjoy it! Read books, do fitness, unfuck your habitat, print your images… try to form good habits to take through the busy season, so that you can return to work with fresh eyes and a renewed enthusiasm!

I’ve completed pretty much everything on this list over the past two months (still to do: finish cleaning out my office, make prints, and watch tons of workshops!), so if there’s anything I’ve overlooked, let me know!

Fredericton Winter Engagement Photography: Jenn & Kyle

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