Big Sur Elopement Photographer | Anthony & Brittany

When Brittany first reached out to us to photograph her wedding in Big Sur, she had described it as a super low key, intimate wedding, where her top priority was getting pretty photos, having fun, and marrying the love of her life. Totally our kind of bride, right there.

They had their wedding venue picked out, a big, beautiful estate down the Big Sur coast that was big enough to hold all their friends and family in attendance, and the rest was entirely up to us. Brittany mentioned Anthony would love some woodsy photos if we could manage to make it to a location like that, and that she would prefer some beachy photos if possible. Again, our ideal mix.

We picked these two up and immediately could tell how warm and loving they were. I don’t know how we always get so lucky with the kindest, most wonderful couples, but I just adore it. Anyway, our first stop was along the Big Sur River in a wooded area that we just love. It’s a perfect stop along the way to Pfeiffer Beach. Unfortunately, Pfeiffer was way too windy to get to go out to the arch and appreciate the purple sand, but we did get some pretty, windy photos at the entrance trail before heading back down the coast.

Along the way to their ceremony, we stopped at a gorgeous cliff side location that had a bunch of (my favorite) pampas grass, and I was basically in heaven. Once we got our fill there, we continued further down the Big Sur coast to their ceremony location. Their friends and family were all excitedly awaiting their arrival for their sunset cliff side ceremony. We’re huge advocates of having your friends or family ordain your ceremony, especially in California. It’s so easy to get ordained and it adds so much to the personalization and intimacy of your day. Brittany and Anthony chose to have a family member ordain their ceremony, and it included so many beautiful, personalized details about them individually, and as a couple. Everyone was crying.

After their stunning ceremony, the sun set rather quickly and we snuck some quick family photos before going in for cake cutting, Mexican food & tequila shots! Have I mentioned this is our kind of couple? So much love for these two.

Portland Wedding Photographer | John & Lauren

I’ll be honest, I’m starting to feel like a broken record as I describe how amazing and kind and loving all our couples are, but it’s the honest truth. And in John & Lauren’s case, I think I mean it a little extra. These two are simply amazing humans. John called us forever ago asking if we’d help create the proposal of his girlfriend’s dreams (more on that in a future post), and they were so happy with that (and the fact that we shared Washington roots) that they brought us all the way up to Portland to photograph their Winery Wedding.

This wedding certainly had its hurdles, despite the amazing planning and preparation Lauren did, sometimes these things just happen. Austin and I are always quick to jump into planner/coordinator/safety-zone maker mode to try and shield the bride and groom from any potential chaos, and help remedy anything that we possibly can. Not only in the name of getting better photos, but mainly to keep our deserving couple happy.

This wedding had high temperatures, a ton of bees, falling florals, and a ton of chaos inner mingled between all the beauty, but it all turned our just fine. For all my potential future brides reading this post, look at these images with the understanding that, with the right team of professionals, and the right mindset and demeanor, even if many things go wrong on your wedding day, you can still end up married to the love of your life with gorgeous photos and memories to show for it!

Most of the difficulties came with the fact that this venue was very new to the wedding event industry, and had a lot of little details to figure out to help a wedding run smoothly- again, not that you can really tell any of this from the photos.

That being said, John & Lauren’s family were some of my very favorites. I swear they’d each give you the shirt off your back if you asked. Did I mention John and Lauren are both in the medical industry? These two have devoted their lives to helping others and I am so honored to know them. For that, I’m so glad we were able to share in their special day! There were so many sweet moments that had us tearing up way more than we expected – from the father officiating the ceremony, to the brother’s acoustic performance dedicated to them, it was almost too much for me to handle.

Wedding Photography Services | Monterey, Carmel, Big Sur & Destination Photographers

Let us be among the first to wish you a big Congratulations! We are so glad you’re here. Even though your mind is probably off & running with all the things that need to be planned, rest assured- we aim to make this aspect of the wedding planning process simple. We believe that you not only deserve beautiful images, but an amazing experience you’ll look back on fondly years from now. We learned early on that when our couples feel comfortable and relaxed in front of the camera, it results in real moments, genuine images and a ton of fun every step of the way.

Want to know a little secret? All of the photos on our website are real couples, during their real weddings, and every single one of them expressed to us before we began shooting that they were incredibly nervous about their photos.

Our wedding photography coverage is entirely unique due to the fact that Austin & I shoot exclusively together at all events. We have been shooting together for nearly 10 years (!!!). This gives us the unique perspective that only another married couple can provide. Not to mention, we know each other pretty extensively which allows us a pretty incredible balance of how we operate during your day, and what we photograph. More often than not, we also have at least one opportunity to get to know you and you as a couple before your wedding day which allows us to get to know each other and turns your wedding day photos into a crazy good time with friends.

Want to know a little secret? All of the photos on our website are real couples, during their real weddings, and every single one of them expressed to us before we began shooting that they were incredibly nervous about their photos.

With nearly 10 years of experience and hundreds of weddings under our proverbial belts, we have designed our standard packages to best suit your needs. We also have bespoke options available for couples who are interested in more unique photography coverage options. Elopements and intimate weddings begin at $1,350 while standard wedding photography coverage begins at $3,750. All wedding photography coverage includes Austin and Nicole as your lead photographers, a digital photo gallery with all rights included, and a complimentary 90 minute engagement session.

Want to know a little secret? All of the photos on our website are real couples, during their real weddings, and every single one of them expressed to us before we began shooting that they were incredibly nervous about their photos.

Did you know… you spend more time with your photographers than anyone else on your wedding day? Often, even more than your spouse! We are with you from the time you get ready, until the last sparkler dies out, and every moment in between. That’s why it’s so important to find photographers that you really enjoy!

Austin and I have been known to climb a tree and walk into the ocean to get ‘the perfect shot’. We’ve confiscated Aunt Sharon’s phone until after the ceremony to ensure she isn’t in the middle of your first kiss shot, and we’ve played stand-in coordinator whenever needed. We are your ‘I could really use a drink’ getters, ‘please save me from an awkward 30 minute conversation with Uncle Bob’ savers, and your #1 fans on your big day! 

If we sound like the kind of people you want to capture your big day, we’d be honored. We encourage you to contact us as soon as you have a date in mind as our calendars do fill up rather quickly. 

Consultation and Marketing Services | Introduction

We’re here for you. Since launching our family owned and operated creative agency in 2012, we’ve learned what works. Unlike other companies, we don’t take ourselves too seriously, and we certainly don’t claim to be something we’re not. Our handpicked team of unique millennials has been developed to build the highest level of core confidence for your brand. We’re all a little nerdy, creative, and insanely motivated to make your life easier, and make your business better. We provide a broad scope of services for many people, but at the core of everything, we simply love making our clients happy.

We’re insanely passionate about working with deserving people and businesses to help find success and lessen some of the burdens of owning and operating your business. We are so proud to share that after many years of working with businesses of all sizes, across a diverse mixture of industries all over the globe, we have developed a solution for our clients that offers the ultimate in convenience and flexibility.

In the early days of our business, a client once told us “you can do anything, just not everything”.

 

Over the years, we realized that was applicable to nearly every person we worked with. As a business owner, you know your time is the most valuable resource, but more often than not, you find yourself wearing too many hats. Making all the decisions on your own can lead to immense feelings of overwhelm, fatigue, and a lack of confidence in your direction.

You can bounce ideas off friends, family, and co-workers, but at the end of the day, expert guidance and practical advice is what you need to make effective progress toward your goals. This is a feeling we understand all too well, which is why we’ve developed our camp-based support system. By hiring Barkis & Co as the creative and strategic arm of your business, you immediately have a team that is with you every step of the way. Base Camp and Summit were designed to provide the highest quality products and services to our two primary clientele groups – those who need affordable solutions, and those who need a quick turnaround time.

When working with us, we encourage you to bring your hopes, dreams, frustrations, and problems so we can help you find creative solutions. Think of us as your go-to resource for bouncing ideas, exploring opportunities, and the team that is truly, always in your camp.

If this is what you’ve been searching for, it’s time to get excited about the journey we’re about to embark on.

Studio Renovation

Our studio is located at 550 Figueroa St in Monterey. We’ve been here for a little over 2 years now, and have always had big plans for this space. As of 2019, we are also a Certified Green Business! Proudly operating all services 100% off solar energy. This space had previously been a lawyer’s office. While the skinny hallways, low floors, and yellow kitchen cabinets had a vintage vibe to them, they weren’t anywhere near the kind of vintage that is worth holding on to.

Before:

The first thing we did was tear up the old flooring. For a few weeks, we weren’t sure if we wanted to maintain the concrete look, or go with wood flooring. While the floors were out, we also decided to take down all the drop ceiling, and much to our excitement, found another 10-12′ in vaulted ceilings! That resulted in a handful of rigid duct work to be done so we could go with our semi-industrial look. Since the floors were out, we decided to knock down a few walls and kitchen cabinets, too. The place really started to come together. 

The biggest problem of this space was lack of hidden storage. We brought in a local maker duo to custom fabricate a 18′ window seat/bench with 3 giant hidden storage boxes. They’re perfect for computer parts, camera and lighting gear, etc. 

After one of our clients had to put sunglasses on during their meeting, we also decided to add a 30% UV tint to our window, to ensure the light was never obtrusive to the experience in the studio. While bright light is great, lighting is incredibly important in design and is often overlooked initially. 

After considering our flooring options and seeing how the space was coming together, we decided to replace the concrete flooring with high-traffic LifeProof flooring. 

We painted the entire place white, which allowed the giant window light to flow nicely through the entire space, and had our resident artist Chase, paint a gorgeous outdoors-y mural throughout the entire space. There are so many little things we did that I can’t even remember – plumbing changes, electrical changes, walls, windows, lighting, custom slat wall, and so much painting. But ultimately it was so fun to get to see our vision evolve and come to life week after week. We’re so thankful for the professionals that assisted us every step of the way and for our team that stepped up and helped keep this project on track while we were out of the country! 

In-progress:

We’ve gone through a few furniture shifts as we’ve been settling into the space now that it’s complete, outdoorsy and rustic, to now semi-modern and modular. We’re in the process of adjusting what used to be the conference room into a 12×15 photo studio so we can expand our service offerings for commercial projects. 

The updated space: (studio coming soon!)

Our History

If you’ve spent much extended time in Monterey, you might have noticed there aren’t too many young people who live here. This area gets the reputation for “newly wed and nearly dead” as it’s very popular for honeymooners & retirement. Most of the younger demographic here either wants to move away because they’ve grown up here, or they’re here for school, or they are involved in the large local military presence in some way. More often than not, when we meet new people, they ask if we’re military. It also comes as a big shock to most that we’re “so young” and manage to operate a successful business in this area. Then, that spawns the question of where we came from, how we got here, and what exactly it is that we do.

Our stories, both personal and professional, are pretty long-winded as they changed a lot in the early years. That young phase of life where we had nothing to lose and so we went whatever direction the wind seemed to take us at the time. That resulted in 9 moves across multiple states in just 5 years, living nomadic for a year, and finally settling here. 

We’ve started a handful of businesses, before finally consolidating them to fly under the Barkis & Co. flag (our accountant likes us a lot more, now). 

Way back in 2011, Austin and I met through business. I had just started my photography business, while Austin was in the stages of growing his first clothing company. His street-wear brand was 100% original and made its way into many stores across the PNW, and developed a large follower base. Ever since that first brush with success, he was hooked. A mutual friend connected us to collaborate, and while the business relationship was successful, we quickly realized there was much more to our relationship and we began dating in 2011. We decided to open a company together, offering graphic design and photography. After getting engaged in 2012, we got an opportunity to move to Southern California to work on a Hollywood film. Austin would be the designer, while I would be a lead photographer. It was an opportunity we didn’t want to pass up. We sold all our belongings, and moved there with 6 months of savings.

As most Hollywood films do, the film fell through. We were left to decide – Should we move back to Washington, or should we try and make something work down here? We chose the latter and didn’t look back. After taking ‘day jobs’ for a brief period to keep the lights on, we realized the draw for the entrepreneurial life was never going to go away. The first opportunity we had to strike out once more in our new location, we took it. Austin worked growing our first official venture in CA, “Pixel Domo” which… it was cute. We were 19 and young and had so much to prove. That evolved into Pixel Redefined, which we maintained for a handful of years. I was eventually able to quit my job and work with Austin again. The Pixel Redefined name traveled with us through our nomadic Teardrop USA days, and for about a year in Monterey.

After receiving multiple checks from clients who were unable to spell the business name, we decided to change it to something much shorter. Enter Zeeqk. 

Zeeqk was derived from a slang term that was popular among surfers in the 70’s and 80’s (our core client demographic at the time). “Zeek/zeke” was what the surfers called the “nerds”. We liked that and decided to lean into our nerdy offerings. At the time, we were offering a lot of primarily technical services – website development, software development, app development, cloud hosting, etc. 

I realized I was missing my photography a lot, and it wasn’t practical at the time to advertise both business services and personal photography services under the Zeeqk brand. Brides were looking for a certain look and feel, and I wanted to maintain that. Enter Barkis & Co Photography.

Zeeqk maintained for a few years as well, but became more creative in its service offerings. Barkis & Co Photography catered solely to lifestyle photography for a year or two, but began picking up more and more commercial clients from national brand names. 

At some point in here, we opened our cloud hosting business, 1up Cloud, but that became a much bigger venture than we expected. 

The social presence and overall refinement of Barkis & Co was really attractive to both of us, so in 2019, we decided to reincorporate at Barkis & Company Inc. and consolidate all our services/interests under this singular brand. We realized that, while we have a team behind us, most of our clients simply want to interface with us directly, and want our expansive knowledge and expertise on each project, whether it’s a wedding or taking a product to market. 

No matter what we called ourselves, or what we said we offered, our central mission stayed entirely the same: help our clients in any way we knew how. 

It’s been a challenging move, but it has been so fun, rewarding, and fulfilling. We love seeing our name on the building and growing our name within this town. It’s amazing to have the opportunity to support other’s in what they want to do, and help our amazing clients find the success that they so desperately deserve.

Believe it or not, that’s the condensed version of our story. 

If you’d like to hear more, let’s go out for a coffee or tea sometime and we can hear yours as well! 

To see more of our office renovation, read this post here.

What We Do

What We Do

To be honest, sometimes we struggle to define exactly what we are, because we do so many things for a lot of different people and industries. Ultimately, we settled on Boutique Creative Agency as we most closely consider ourselves to be a nimble, creative team with a penchant for storytelling across a wide variety of mediums & platforms, and we operate strongly off our core values.

boutique creative agency
[bo͞oˈtēk krēˈādiv ˈājənsē ] noun

a business or establishment that is small and sophisticated that offers a combination of creative, strategy, design, technology and advertising services to clients, it is creative or expert lead, it’s made up primarily of creative professionals, and it’s often strongly defined by values.

 
 

We get very invested in our client’s goals, so we’ve had to ensure our team is efficient, specialized, and proudly 100% USA based (one of our clients were being outsourced offshore and didn’t know it, we don’t think that’s cool). When a project is outside our team’s capabilities, we have a well-established network to support it’s needs. We can connect you with them directly, or we can manage the project for you – It’s up to you. That’s all part of our mission.

So, what exactly does that mean?

Our primary services are: Photography (commercial & lifestyle), Design (branding, print design, apparel, website design, interior design, etc.), Marketing (organic search engine optimization, social media consultation, paid ad campaign management, etc.), and Consultation (project management, brand management/expansion, business strategy development, etc.). 

We are vertically integrated love working within new industries that continually challenge us. We’ve named products and ventures, managed national franchise expansions, grown businesses both brick & mortar, and online from local to national. We’ve branded, consulted, created content for and marketed alongside global brand names. We’ve designed apps, and managed projects of nearly all scope sizes. We absolutely love what we do – Whether your business is struggling and needs help, or it’s good and you want to make it great. We can either help you or point you in the right direction.

We create one of a kind experiences through photography, brand development, website design, consultation, and more. The easy way to explain it is that we tell our clients stories, and we do it really well. We’ve photographed over 100 weddings, traveled the world and proudly worked with global brand names such as Amazon, Alaska Airlines, Starbucks, Band-Aid, and PepsiCo. We have designed and consulted across many industries, and proudly represent some of the most prestigious names throughout the Monterey Bay and beyond. 

If you or your business have a story to tell, we’d love to be a part of it; please give us a call 831-920-2141. 

Meet Nicole & Austin Barkis

Meet Nicole & Austin Barkis

Hello, we are Nicole and Austin Barkis, and we are so glad you’re here! We are the husband and wife team behind this creative agency. While we are the main faces behind this company, we have a team of 6 primary team members that assist us in maintaining all our contracts. The majority of which work telecommute from the LA and SF areas. Thanks to our expansive industry experience, we also partner with a vast team of trusted professionals on a regular basis (all state-side) which allow our agency to scale depending on your project’s specific needs. 

A little bit about us personally… we were both born and raised in Olympia, Washington, we met through work as we were both starting our first businesses nearly 10 years ago. We’ve been attached at the hip ever since. Our first “big break” took us to Southern California to work on design & photography within the film industry. As many of you may know, films often fall through in Hollywood, and we decided to start our first creative firm. We learned a lot in those early years, in the fast-paced business world that is Los Angeles.

After a few years, we realized we didn’t want to settle down in Southern California, and decided to sell all our belongings, attach a teardrop trailer to our Mini Cooper, and travel the USA to find our new home. The year we spent on the road was one of our favorite adventures, and what brought us to the beautiful central coast of Monterey Bay – quite possibly the most beautiful stretch of coastline in the world. We are so thankful to have our roots here, but we are incredibly fortunate to our customers that provide us work across the globe.

From the very beginning of our relationship, travel has been an integral part. We have explored 13 states and 6 countries together so far, with quite a few left on our list. Traveling allows us the opportunity to see the world differently, refill our creative minds and bring that energy and global insight into everything we do.

We struggle to define exactly what we are sometimes, because we do so many things for a lot of different people and industries. Ultimately, we settled on Boutique Creative Agency as we most closely consider ourselves to be a nimble, creative team with a penchant for storytelling across a wide variety of mediums & platforms, and we operate strongly off our core values.

boutique creative agency
[bo͞oˈtēk krēˈādiv ˈājənsē ] noun

a business or establishment that is small and sophisticated that offers a combination of creative, strategy, design, technology and advertising services to clients, it is creative or expert lead, it’s made up primarily of creative professionals, and it’s often strongly defined by values.

 
 

We create one of a kind experiences through photography, brand development, website design, consultation, and more. The easy way to explain it is that we tell our clients stories, and we do it really well. We’ve photographed over 100 weddings, traveled the world and proudly worked with global brand names such as Amazon, Alaska Airlines, Starbucks, Band-Aid, and PepsiCo. We have designed and consulted across many industries, and proudly represent some of the most prestigious names throughout the Monterey Bay and beyond. 

We get very invested in our client’s goals, so we’ve had to ensure our team is efficient, specialized, and proudly 100% USA based (one of our clients were being outsourced offshore and didn’t know it, we don’t think that’s cool). When a project is outside our team’s capabilities, we have a well-established network to support it’s needs. We can connect you with them directly, or we can manage the project for you – It’s up to you. That’s all part of our mission.

We are vertically integrated love working within new industries that continually challenge us. We’ve named products and ventures, managed national franchise expansions, grown businesses both brick & mortar, and online from local to national. We’ve branded, consulted, created content for and marketed alongside global brand names. We’ve designed apps, and managed projects of nearly all scope sizes. We absolutely love what we do – Whether your business is struggling and needs help, or it’s good and you want to make it great. We can either help you or point you in the right direction.

 

If you or your business have a story to tell, we’d love to be a part of it; please give us a call 831-920-2141.