second shooter

Shout Out | Kathryn Johnson Photography


This is a special session, one that no one wants to shoot. These beautiful photos document the loss of a child. This couple experienced an ectopic pregnancy and these photos were taken instead of their planned maternity session. In memory of their baby, they planted a flower garden. The flowers in these photos are from that same garden. Kathryn did an excellent job capturing the sorrow and life through the photos. 

As photographers, we are here to capture people's lives. And not all of our days are full of happy smiles. Our lives are full of loss, and I am thankful that Kathryn captured these real, hard moments. 

This quilt of Kathryn's that graces these photos is one of my favorites. It is a beautiful quilt that is full of pastels. Scroll to the end to learn more about Kathryn and to show her some love in the comments! 

All Photos By Kathryn Johnson Photography

Meet the Photographer: 


Kathryn is a natural light photographer in Tulsa, Oklahoma. As a new photographer, Kathryn is currently shooting a little bit of everything, from newborn and fresh 48 sessions, to family portraits and lifestyle sessions. She got her first DSLR last November, and her only wish is that she had started sooner! Her favorite subject is her 19 month old daughter, Norah, and that will soon grow to include a baby boy in January. When not behind the lens or the computer, Kathryn works part time at her church, and is the president of a non-profit for families who have experienced pregnancy losses, called Hannah’s Hope.

Go show Kathryn some love and see more of Kathryn Johnson Photography here: Website, Facebook, Instagram (@kathryncjohnsonphotography), Non-Profit Website

What's in My Bag?

I am a wedding photographer by day. So, my life is surrouded by quilts, cameras, and happy photos. 

We try to keep our kit extra simple. For weddings, I *always* shoot with two cameras. I started dual shooting a couple of years ago and I.will.never.go.back!

My baby is my 50mm 1.2 lens. I shoot 95% of all photos with it. And the Canon 5D Mark IV, it makes my heart race. Both of these photos above where taken with this power combo! 

My second body is my trusty Canon 5D Mark iii. This beaut has photographed so many weddings and even more quilts. It is my old faithful. I keep this on my left side, and my husband (who is my fabulous second shooter and do-everything-for-me guy) shoots with a 5D3 too. 

Justin shoots with this amazing lens. The 85mm 1.2 could become my go-to lens, but sometimes it is just too tight when shooting lead. But, it is a perfect second shooter lens. He uses it to capture moments like the photo above. I also put him in charge of shooting details.

My other go-to lens is my 70-200mm 2.8. I use this from portraits to ceremonies, as you can see from the photos above. I am not one to move around much during a ceremony, so it is perfect for staying hidden in the back. I am also a sucker for long focal lengths (I have used the 200mm 2.0 for a couple of sessions!) and also prefer a longer focal length over super wide shots. When I am shooting an engagement session, my 50mm is the widest that I go! 

I keep the 35mm 1.4 on my b-camera all day (except when I switch it out for the 70-200mm for the ceremony). But, honestly, I take very few photos with it. An average wedding day, I will take ~1800 with my 50mm/5D4 setup and about ~200 with my 35mm/5D3 setup. I basically have it by my side for those moments when you need to capture something wider (small dressing rooms, those requested group shots at receptions, etc). But, man, are these images with the 35mm 1.4 SHARP! 

We basically just use the 100mm 2.8 for ring shots. Every now and then I might whip it out for some portraits (I need to do this more). 

When we (Justin) have time, we will use our 90mm 2.8 tilt shift. But, it useally just makes an apperance at engagement sessions. Why, because I can't find the time to get out another lens during a wedding! 

Our new baby, the Pentax 645, is more for personal photos. We *try* to take some throughout the wedding day, but it doesn't always happen. We haven't developed the images from our recent weddings, so here is one from our February trip to San Fransico! 

This is 99% used for video jobs and for filming weddings (we do that too!), but we try to take photos with it too. 

We try to stay super organized. We have a love affair with Think Tank, and 99% of our bags are from them! If a battery is facing up with the yellow tape (yay for numbering them!), then that means it is charged. The same goes for our memory card holders. If a card is face down, it means that card has data on it, isn't formatted, and can't be used. The top part of our camera bag is full of cords, cords, and more cords. I won't even begin to go through all of them because that is Justin's field and I have zero idea what any of it does. 

After writing this post and taking these photos, I realized I was missing some important pieces! Flashes! We use flashes during our receptions. I didn't have them in our bag, because our last wedding was outside and over by 6PM, so no need for flashes! 

For flashes, we use the Canon ex430 iii. We have one on each camera and then two on each ends of the dance floor (five total). I use the flashes on light stands as a back light and the flashes on my camera to light the subject! I loveeeeeee photographing dancing at receptions! 

So, this is us. Just two high school sweethearts figuring it out as we go. I owe all of my knowledge to this tech guy. He solves all of my problems and fixes everything. Before a wedding, I never check to see if cards are ready, batteries are charged, or if we even have our cameras. He always takes care of everything. 

And, I couldn't keep up with these lenses and cameras without my Holdfast Money Maker. It is my baby. I love it. Justin shoots with the Black Rapid. He uses this one for two reasons: it is cheaper and it is more comfortable. But I know he is super jealous of how fashinable I am with my Holdfast! ;)