Etsy Shop: FlowerCouture- Gatsby Collection

CMMS Studio traveled back to the Roaring 1920′s with Etsy’s shop, FlowerCouture.  Our team built two sets that resembled a Gatsby atmosphere.  We brought models in from the South Carolina Pageant circuit (including Miss Teen South Carolina- Brook Sill and Miss Junior Teen United States- Savanna Brown), models from Model Mayhem, and even our MUA took part as a model in this incredible experience!  FlowerCouture’s owner, Lynn Brown thought the photos were, “Stunning!”  Knowing that we fulfilled and exceeded our client’s expectations makes our profession and passion for photography worth while.


Find these FAB headbands on Flower Couture‘s Etsy page>

Photography by CMMS Studio (Custom Multimedia Solutions)

#Gatsby dress by Tanya-Marie Design

Models: Miranda Hodges, Ashley Lauren Pendergist, Kelehear Dickerson, Savanna Rae Brown (Miss Junior Teen United States), Blythe Neal, Brook Sill (Miss Teen SC USA)

MUA: Andrea Flowers

Miranda Hodges wearing Etsy Flower Couture Headband for a Gatsby Promotion. Photography by CMMS Studio in Myrtle Beach, SC

Ashley Lauren Pendergist wearing Etsy Flower Couture Headband for a Gatsby Promotion. Photography by CMMS Studio in Myrtle Beach, SC

Blythe Neal wearing Etsy Flower Couture Headband for a Gatsby Promotion. Photography by CMMS Studio in Myrtle Beach, SC Kelehear Dickerson wearing Etsy Flower Couture Headband for a Gatsby Promotion. Photography by CMMS Studio in Myrtle Beach, SC Miranda Hodges wearing Etsy Flower Couture Headband for a Gatsby Promotion. Photography by CMMS Studio in Myrtle Beach, SC Savanna Rae Brown, Miss Junior Teen United States, wearing Etsy Flower Couture Headband for a Gatsby Promotion. Photography by CMMS Studio in Myrtle Beach, SC Ashley Lauren Pendergist wearing Etsy Flower Couture Headband for a Gatsby Promotion. Photography by CMMS Studio in Myrtle Beach, SC



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Production Manager/Creative Director: Brenda Lerner
Photographer/Creative Director/Graphic Artist: Meganpixels Parker
Graphic Artist: Amanda “Dazzling” Welch
Videographer/Lighting/Gaffer/ : Art Barrera
Lighting/Gaffer: Keith Bardwell

Miss Palmetto State 2014

Every time we work with Tess we consistently get great images.  She came to us in need of some headshots for her upcoming Miss South Carolina USA pageant. Photogenic is barely a word to describe the beauty of this girl.  Her confidence, poise, and angelic nature radiate through each frame.


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Recent Photogenics

Fall photogenics are in full swing.  Aynor Harvest Hoe Down, Loris Bog-Off, NC Yam Festival, OH MY!  Here are some of our recent headshot Most Photogenic winners.


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Last, but not least our Loris High School Pageant MOST PHOTOGENIC Winner- Brook.

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Hats and hair accessories were the rage at London Fashion Week.  CMMS Studio Photography has also been on top of this trend adding millinery to their model’s photo shoots.

The British Fashion Council has opened a show: “Headonism” showcasing the newest in millinery fashion as the London College of Fashion opened “Head On” exploring the role of hats in contemporary fashion.

Historically, hats have been considered a part of an ensemble and in many cases social correctness required the wearing of a hat, especially in England.  CMMS Studio has now found a rebirth of millinery in popular culture. The recession, as a backdrop, is a part of this flourishing hat design re-birth, as headpieces have long been associated with stature. In this economic downturn hats are being worn to this effect.

Wit and whimsy set the tone for the varied looks at the fashion catwalks this year. Wildly plumed bonnets, silk turbans, veiled hats, berets, were all seen as pop culture headgear. Jaunty irreverence and spirited youthfulness defined the collections.

Unconfined by the need for neck holes and arm sleeves, milliners can express creativity with freedom as few other designers can. The inspiration can be found in the natural world (feathers), in geometry, exoticism and in history. The final product expresses the wearer’s personal style.

Bolted, the new ready to wear collection from Keely Hunter Millinery is an amazing line. Inspired by London street culture and a love of fluorescents and perspex, Bolted featured a range of ready to wear beanies and flat peak caps emblazoned with pop culture motifs.

According to Fashion-Era, known for historical fashion research, “Humans have covered their heads since time immemorial.  Initially headwear offered protection from the elements and from injury from falling rocks, weapons or masonry.  Later head coverings became symbols of status of authority.  Soon after hats progressed to become not only a uniform, but also an art form.

In fashion terms, hats are a noticeable accessory because the onlooker’s attention is first drawn to the face. A hat is the most noticeable fashion item anyone can wear.  The old saying goes ‘if you want to get ahead and get noticed, then get a hat’.  Indeed the word ‘ahead’ means just that one head further forward.

Millinery has existed in Britain since 1700.  In English courts the term milliner was used and this was derived from the term for travelling haberdashers from Milan in Italy.  These travelling sales people sold all the items necessary to dress and were called milliners.

In France hats were made by hat-makers called chapeliers.  Today the term modiste is used in France.  Today technically a hat-maker makes hats for men whilst a milliner makes hats for women.

Running parallel to these hat-making arts are feather workshops or more correctly workshops called plumassiers where feathers are dyed and made into arrangements.  Plumes have always been a status symbol and sign of economic stability.

Millinery trends will always complement fashion trends of the season. For 2013 citrus and pastel colors will be popular. We will see a lot of beautiful lace colors.

Hailing from Dublin, milliner, Paula Lawlor shares her top tips for when it comes to choosing that all-important hat to wear: “Personally a lady has some issues to address. If you are petite or a larger sized lady a huge hat with large brim may be your image to wear but practically will not suit your stature.  Think of structure and height, it will elongate your figure; you can be dramatic and carry a tall sculptured piece with ease.

Always try on sizes and styles, don’t invest in a hat just because the color matches your outfit. A big part of an outfit and the wearing of a hat has so much to do with confidence, if you feel a million dollars in an outfit you will have poise and style, that magic ingredient is in us all.”


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Grace’s Modeling Experience

We first met Grace last autumn at the Loris Bog-Off Pageant.  She was a vivacious young lady who loved being in front of the camera.  Her mother referred to her personality as the “Christie Brinkley” of her time.  Grace performed a wonderful dance routine and won “Best Overall Performance” at the Loris Bog-Off Pageant, along with winning her division.

She later came by the studio interested in our “Modeling Experience“.  The photos represent her Graceful, vibrant charisma.

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Top 5 Super Bowl Commercials 2013

5. Oreo Whisper Fight

4. Viva Young – 2013 Taco Bell Game Day Commercial

3. Doritos – Fashionista Daddy — Crash the Super Bowl 2013 Finalist

2. The Clydesdales: “Brotherhood”

1. Ram Trucks Super Bowl Commercial “Farmer”

Beautiful Beach Weddings

Myrtle Beach is a beautiful location for a Beach Wedding.  The sand beaches are clean and expansive. The weather is mild and of course the ocean is magnificent. Romance amidst a tropical setting brings many couples to this lovely area.

There are countless options for entertainment before and after the wedding ceremony and a wide variety of accommodations are available.

CMMS Studio has been at the forefront of Beach Wedding photography since 2006. It has been our privilege to capture every detail of this special day for many couples. On your big day, we will be with you before, during and after your ceremony to ensure that we capture every precious memory. We understand that every moment from the individual portraits and group photographs, to the first dance, bouquet toss, champagne toast and cake cutting is extremely important and priceless to you. With us, you will not have to worry or wonder if your special day is being captured the way it deserves. You will have no need to stress – with us you can rest assured that you will receive the best.

Our goal is to make your beautiful memories everlasting. We go one step further and make them epic.

As you view the following sample of photos from various beach weddings, please notice that colors are vibrant, there are no shadows (where they don’t belong!) and the creativity takes you a big step out of the ordinary. Lighting specialists accompany our team of photographers. We have all been trained by the best in the world and have the latest equipment and technology. Also, please note that you will be viewing some examples of “infra-red” photography.

Please enjoy. We are passionate about our work! As we tell our couples, “You can hire talent. However, you can only FIND passion.”

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Copyright CMMSStudio

Myrtle Beach Weddings


Engagement Ring – Wedding Band

The holiday season is filled with wonder and joy. Many couples choose to add romance by becoming engaged during the Christmas season. Whether a public or private Christmas proposal is chosen, this special moment will always be a treasured holiday memory.

January and February are CMMS Studio’s busiest months for our newly engaged couples to come to our studio to discuss their Photography and Video needs and to choose a date for their wedding.

We would like to share a few of our beautiful photographs of engagement and wedding rings and thought you may enjoy the history of how the tradition of engagement rings and wedding bands began and evolved through the centuries.

The purpose of the rings is to signify a partnership and to symbolize a relationship having a complete circle with no breaks and no end. This symbolism spans many centuries and many cultures beginning in ancient Egypt. Leaves and stems were woven into circles to signify never-ending and immortal love. The fourth finger on the left hand was believed to contain a vein that was directly connected to the heart and became the “ring” finger.

Roman betrothal rings were made of iron, which signified strength and endurance. The Romans were the first to engrave their rings. The rings were awarded as a symbol of ownership. Roman men “claimed” their woman with the ring.

Arab and Asian cultures used “Puzzle” rings as wedding bands. These rings served the dual purpose of the marriage announcement and to enforce the fidelity vow. Once removed from the finger, the ring would collapse and only the husband could put it together as each ring was unique.

Europeans began to use rings to show affection and promising love in the 17th century. These rings were known as “Posey” rings and symbolized a pledge of eternal togetherness.

In America, during Colonial times, jewelry was prohibited. Americans were frugal and deemed jewelry an unnecessary extravagance. Thimbles were given as an engagement token and the top cut off to fit the finger for the wedding band.

It is clear that the giving of a ring in honor of a union, betrothal, and marriage has been going on since ancient times, and although it may not always have been as glamorous and romantic as it is today, it was still a way of exchanging a contract of betrothal or marriage.

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CMMS Studio Advises Creative Professionals – Make New Year’s Resolutions – 2013

Happy New Year

CMMS Studio recommends setting resolutions for the New Year that increase productivity in a creative work environment. During times when artists experience a creative slump, they dig out by making an exerted effort at least once a day to babble, dance, sketch something original, think out loud to strengthen creativity, inspire motivation, and expand their imagination.


CMMS Studio offers some tips that have helped them in 2012.

Power OFF technology devices.

Every Monday for two hours the professionals at CMMS Studio, come together for an uninterrupted meeting to exchange creative ideas. They constantly improve their techniques with up-to-date technologies that are implemented in their photography, videography, advertising, and graphic design business workflow. Consequently CMMS Studio has become a technology-driven business whose team are “glued” to either their computers or cameras all day which shortens the time they verbally communicate with one another. A breakthrough was made during one of their weekly meetings when they all took part in an informal Myers-Briggs Type Indicator assessment to measure their various personality types. This served as a “team-building exercise” which, as a result has made each team member aware of their various traits and personality characteristics and use them in ways that help address and cope with situations in a more positive and effective manner. Due to the sharing of ideas amongst the staff and their constant awareness of current technologies they are experiencing an increase in productivity and profit.

Live the opposite.

Whether a person fits the personality type of an obsessive compulsive or a messy compulsive, it is good to reverse the normal flow. Graphic designers have the stereotype of being extremely orderly with a feng shui practice because of the invisible x and y grid they live every day. They need to let go of feng shui and loosen up to some “messy” shui. Changing the routine up every day by allowing dishes, laundry or other household items to just exist without order helps. Painters, especially men, get the bad wrap of living too “free” with their chaotic piles. Devoting some time in the week to make sense of those piles and organize them as if they were a Pinterest board is a good excersise. They recommend evoking creativity by changing up the flow of the predictive sense. Use smart and easy feng shui tips to create vibrant energy in the office. “Feng shui is all about great energy, and it is needed when it comes to productivity and business success”, says Megan Parker. At CMMS Studio Feng shui is practiced by following these 10 practical tips found at:

Give Your Desktop a Facelift.

There are times when a person subconsciously meditates on a mundane desktop background. Everyone does this at one time or another. Imaginations can be rejuvenated by finding a colorful image that goes to another time or place. Computer monitors can be set to change scenes every so often with full-spectrum images that can be rotated every 30 minutes. Exposing the eyes to different hues serves as therapy and is essential in working through the creative process. Remember the world is not simply black and white. It is filled with an array of colors and images that stimulate the psyche.

Speak with kindness to everyone

A person can look in front of a mirror daily and verbally compliment him or herself and thank God for their gift of creativity. The art realm is full of criticism – whether constructive or destructive. The use of creative friction is always helpful to see different sides of the same triangle. Even when creative disagreements arise with someone, always speak with kindness and gratitude. Ask them about their lives instead of always being all business. This doesn’t mean a person needs to pry into another’s personal matters; it just shows an interest in who they are as people. This allows the artistic energy to flow without “ruffling any feathers.”


Reasons Professional Photographers Cannot Work Free

Dear potential photo buyer,

If you have been directed to this page, it is likely that you have requested the use of an image or images for free or minimal compensation.

As professional photographers, we receive requests for free images on a regular basis. In a perfect world, each of us would love to be able to respond in a positive manner and assist, especially with projects or efforts related to areas such as education, social issues, and conservation of natural resources. It is fair to say that in many cases, we wish we had the time and resources to do more to assist than just send photographs.

Unfortunately, such are the practicalities of life that we are often unable to respond, or that when we do, our replies are brief and do not convey an adequate sense of the reasons underlying our response.

Circumstances vary for each situation, but we have found that there are a number of recurring themes, which we have set out below with the objective of communicating more clearly with you, and hopefully avoiding misunderstandings or unintentionally engendering ill will.

Please take the following points in the constructive manner in which they are intended. We certainly hope that after you have had a chance to read this, we will be able to talk again and establish a mutually beneficial working relationship.

Photographs Are Our Livelihood
Creating compelling images is the way we make our living. If we give away our images for free, or spend too much time responding to requests for free images, we cannot make a living.

We Do Support Worthy Causes With Images
Most of us do contribute photographs, sometimes more, to support certain causes. In many cases, we may have participated directly in projects that we support with images, or we may have a pre-existing personal relationship with key people involved with the efforts concerned. In other words, each of us can and does provide images without compensation on a selective basis.

We Have Time Constraints
Making a leap from such selective support to responding positively to every request we get for free photographs, however, is impractical, if for no other reason than the substantial amount of time required to respond to requests, exchange correspondence, prepare and send files, and then follow-up to find out how our images were used and what objectives, if any, were achieved. It takes a lot of time to respond to requests, and time is always in short supply.

Pleas of “We Have No Money” Are Often Difficult to Fathom
The primary rationale provided in nearly all requests for free photographs is budgetary constraint, meaning that the requestor pleads a lack of funds.

Such requests frequently originate from organisations with a lot of cash on hand, whether they be publicly listed companies, government or quasi-government agencies, or even NGOs. Often, it is a simple matter of taking a look at a public filing or other similar disclosure document to see that the entity concerned has access to significant funding, certainly more than enough to pay photographers a reasonable fee should they choose to do so.

To make matters worse, it is apparent that all too often, of all the parties involved in a project or particular effort, photographers are the only ones being asked to work for free. Everyone else gets paid.

Given considerations like this, you can perhaps understand why we frequently feel slighted when we are told that: “We have no money.” Such claims can come across as a cynical ploy intended to take advantage of gullible individuals.

We Have Real Budget Constraints
With some exceptions, photography is not a highly remunerative profession. We have chosen this path in large part due to the passion we have for visual communication, visual art, and the subject matters in which we specialise.

The substantial increase in photographs available via the internet in recent years, coupled with reduced budgets of many photo buyers, means that our already meager incomes have come under additional strain.

Moreover, being a professional photographer involves significant monetary investment.

Our profession is by nature equipment-intensive. We need to buy cameras, lenses, computers, software, storage devices, and more on a regular basis. Things break and need to be repaired. We need back-ups of all our data, as one ill-placed cup of coffee could literally erase years of work. For all of us, investment in essential hardware and software entails thousands of dollars a year, as we need to stay current with new technology and best practices.

In addition, travel is a big part of many of our businesses. We must spend a lot of money on transportation, lodging and other travel-related costs.

And of course, perhaps most importantly, there is a substantial sum associated with the time and experience we have invested to become proficient at what we do, as well as the personal risks we often take. Taking snapshots may only involve pressing the camera shutter release, but creating images requires skill, experience and judgement.

So the bottom line is that although we certainly understand and can sympathise with budget constraints, from a practical point of view, we simply cannot afford to subsidise everyone who asks.

Getting “Credit” Doesn’t Mean Much
Part and parcel with requests for free images premised on budgetary constraints is often the promise of providing “credit” and “exposure”, in the form or a watermark, link, or perhaps even a specific mention, as a form of compensation in lieu of commercial remuneration.

There are two major problems with this.

First, getting credit isn’t compensation. We did, after all, create the images concerned, so credit is automatic. It is not something that we hope a third party will be kind enough to grant us.

Second, credit doesn’t pay bills. As we hopefully made clear above, we work hard to make the money required to reinvest in our photographic equipment and to cover related business expenses. On top of that, we need to make enough to pay for basic necessities like food, housing, transportation, etc.

In short, receiving credit for an image we created is a given, not compensation, and credit is not a substitute for payment.

“You Are The Only Photographer Being Unreasonable”
When we do have time to engage in correspondence with people and entities who request free photos, the dialogue sometimes degenerates into an agitated statement directed toward us, asserting in essence that all other photographers the person or entity has contacted are more than delighted to provide photos for free, and that somehow, we are “the only photographer being unreasonable”.

We know that is not true.

We also know that no reasonable and competent photographer would agree to unreasonable conditions. We do allow for the fact that some inexperienced photographers or people who happen to own cameras may indeed agree to work for free, but as the folk wisdom goes: “You get what you pay for.”

Please Follow-Up
One other experience we have in common is that when we do provide photographs for free, we often do not receive updates, feedback or any other form of follow-up letting us know how the event or project unfolded, what goals (if any) were achieved, and what good (if any) our photos did.

All too often, we don’t even get responses to emails we send to follow-up, until, of course, the next time that someone wants free photographs.

In instances where we do agree to work for free, please have the courtesy to follow-up and let us know how things went. A little consideration will go a long way in making us feel more inclined to take time to provide additional images in the future.

Wrap Up
We hope that the above points help elucidate why the relevant photographer listed below has sent you to this link. All of us are dedicated professionals, and we would be happy to work with you to move forward in a mutually beneficial manner.

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