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The 8 Best Event Photographers in New Orleans

New Orleans is the capital of events. There’s always something to do on the streets of the Big Easy — be it catching a sports game, jumping into a wedding procession, partaking in Mardi Gras, or seeing your favorite band take over the town. You’re never short of somewhere to go or something to do in NOLA. These New Orleans event photographers specialize in all kinds of events, each with their own unique twists and niches. After all, you wouldn’t want a concert photographer taking your wedding party photos. Or, actually, maybe you would! 

1. Krystin Kospelich

Krystin Kospelich knows how quickly time passes. It’s an aspect of life that drives her to capture your most special events as they happen: the beautiful, the silly, the fun, touching, and the bold. Her newborn photography is especially different. Each photograph of the bundled up babies look tiny, cherubic, and innocent. Krystin is a reliable and professional photographer dedicated to providing her clients with portraits and event photography to remember.

Furthermore, through KKD Photography, she runs a lot of fundraisers where you can donate to wonderful causes, as well as be entered for a chance of winning a photo session. Her event photography often splits the difference between documentary and classical portrait styles; she captures things like birthday parties, holidays in a more posed and artistic fashion. On the other hand, she can also provide journalistic event coverage, flash and smile in hand.

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2. Anthony and Jodi LaMothe of Capture Studio Photographic

Creative director and lead photographer Anthony LaMothe, alongside his wife Jodi, captures mesmerizing photos of people, places, and things. As a New Orleans event photographer, he’s captured numerous private events from parties and weddings to private corporate galas, as well as red carpet and special occasions. Anthony is a proud member of the New Orleans Chamber of Commerce who absolutely loves good music and documenting memorable moments.

3. Sorena Briley of Sorena A Photography

Serving the New Orleans metro area, Sorena Briley is a wonder woman. As a mother to three, as well as a professional photographer, she’s always on the hunt for her next creative opportunity. Born and raised in New Orleans, Briley moved to DC where she lived for 13 years before returning to the Big Easy. While up north, she studied fine arts and photography, opening her own business in 2009. Sorena’s photo style is journalistic and documentarian, with hints of commercial flair where appropriate.

4. Chris Granger

As a staff photographer with The Times-Picayune, Chris Granger takes photos of all sorts of events around NOLA — sports games, local business openings, conferences, and beyond. Chris has been with the newspaper since 1996 where he’s also had the chance to shoot editorials and features. In addition to his job with The Times-Picayune, he’s a freelance photographer, and his past clients include Men’s Journal, GQ, Texas Monthly, and MOJO. Like many talented photojournalists, he uses traditional composition techniques, selective depth of field, and a dozen other tricks of the trade to ensure the audience sees the message of the image just the way he wants them to.

5. Gary Waddle

Gary Waddle seems to be everywhere at once. As a travel photographer based in NOLA, it’s rare that there’s an event in the city without him and his trusty camera there to document it. Probably one of the most prolific New Orleans events photographers, Gary has snapped pics at the Bal Masqué, Blush Ball, Sirens Ball, as well as all other marches, carnivals, parties, and conferences in between. Most importantly, he has a knack for getting his subjects to pose naturally, making them feel at ease in front of the camera. Not always an easy feat, as you’ll agree!

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6. Calvin Gavion

A successful photographer becomes one with their camera. Calvin Gavion has achieved precisely that. A native to NOLA, Calvin has been taking photographs for six years. He’s taken pictures of weddings, couples, engagements, as well as private parties and events across town. Calvin wants to have fun with his clients, becoming as much a part of the event as the man capturing it. His wedding shots have been featured in ESSENCE and in The Times-Picayune. His event shots are stylish and narrative, nothing short of hip. Check him out — you’ll love him.

7. Paris Achenbach

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Cyril Neville singing a tribute for his brother Art, who’d passed away earlier in the day, July 22, 2019. I was honored to be at this show as well as have this photo published in ANTIGRAVITY’s annual photo issue earlier this month. If you haven’t picked up a copy, go find ya one, they’ll be available for the next week or so! Copying the printed profile Q&A below… — What is your favorite rig to shoot on? I like small portable cameras and gear, stuff that I can hike and climb around with. My Nikon F3, that I found on Craigslist from a very nice lady up in Slidell, is my #1. What is your favorite subject to shoot and why? I like photographing people in nature, usually from far away to show scale for trees, rocks, or rivers. Growing up in DC I was lucky to be exposed to the National Gallery of Art, and some of my favorite paintings early on were those of Frederic Edwin Church, depicting little humans surrounded by epic palms and mountains and sunsets. What are your goals as a photographer? To expose truths, to find beauty in the ordinary, to stay humble, to deepen our collective empathy, to remind us of our connection to our environment, to inspire others into action and love. To have it as a source of long-term financial stability. To become better with a flash. What advice do you have for other photographers? Cultivate your inner diverse curiosities and spirit. Great photographs are just as much a product of what’s on the inside as what’s on the outside.

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Paris Achenbach was born and raised in Washington, DC, but has since become a true New Orleanian after moving here in 2014. Paris has spent that time working in construction and landscaping, following her more creative passions on the side, which includes photography. As well as her photography, you can find her in bars across New Orleans with her guitar, playing music for their patrons.

When the camera is in her hand, she’s taking photographs of everything from the clouds over the Mississippi River to concerts, rowdy parties, and events that can only happen in New Orleans. That well-rounded life experience lends her a particular adaptability and point of view that serves her craft well. She’ll make a lovely collaborator for events on multiple levels, making her a great person to know.

8. Chelcie Marie

Chelcie Marie’s photography journey began more than a decade ago. Getting her start in high school as her boyfriend’s band’s unofficial photographer, she was soon taking photographs of bands around New Orleans and South Louisiana. Once college came, she veered towards portraits, but she always seems to come back to shooting live music from the pit. Chelcie has shot tons of big bands from Panic! at the Disco to Maroon 5 and Fall Out Boy, and it’s exciting to see who’ll be next. If you’re organizing an event that has a heavy live music component, start your photographer search with Chelcie.

Whatever their specialty, New Orleans event photographers need to have a command on low-light photography and a desire to bring moments to life. This city is positively bursting with creativity, and we can’t wait to see what the community does next.

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