Backyard Wedding Part I

When my good friend got engaged, she told me that she'd be having a private, family only wedding. I was so bummed to miss the ceremony but respected her request. Luckily, she ALSO wanted me to photograph it, and I happily accepted the role. So, I boarded a plane to Pennsylvania and arrived on an incredibly hot and humid day to find every burner on the stove firing away while meat slowly cooked in multiple bbqs outside. You see, Alex hails from Oklahoma, and his family competes in Kansas City BBQ competitions. Jackpot. 

For the next few hours, Nicole and Alex drank some cold beers, cooked some good food, and slowly got into their wedding best while mingling with their guests (they totally overrode their family-only policy). Abruptly, the officiant, one of Nicole's fellow yogis, asked guests to stop what they were doing so the wedding could begin. Nicole walked out of her backdoor, dressed in lace and flowers, to silence as children darted back and forth in her way. The ceremony was short, sweet, and nothing short of perfect. For the remainder of the evening, we beered, dined, and enjoyed a hot summer night filled with love. It was truly the perfect backyard wedding. 

The following day, I met Nicole, Alex, and Freddy the Hound at their local kayaking spot to take some forrest portraits. Again, it was hellishly hot and humid, but we didn't mind so much. I will post those pics in another blog post.

Congrats, Nicole and Alex! I love you guys!

Moody Maternity Session

When Rachel booked me for her maternity session, she noted that my backlit, ethereal sunset shots are what caught her eye. Fast forward to the day of our shoot and it's Portland gray, chilly, and our location is taped off with crime scene tape. Not ideal conditions, to say the least.

Luckily, Rachel and John are good humored and ready to go with the flow, despite the weather and swarming police officers. After trying and failing to include doggy George in the session, I was able to convince Rachel to try on my new addition to my client closet (details to come on this!), and let me get some shots. We spent the next hour wandering around Lighthouse Field and then the beach before calling it a wrap. I told them that if the photos sucked we could just have a quick redo somewhere sunny and nice. 

Holy crap. Not necessary. The pictures came out SO beautifully that I think we all were pleasantly surprised. Check out our moody magic below. 

 

Pennsylvania Visit

We just returned from visiting friends and family in Pennsylvania and although a whirlwind, we had a great time. After so many years away, I see it now through different eyes. While the California coast is undeniably gorgeous, there really is beauty every where if you look for it. Take my mom's backyard for example- I enjoyed capturing my girls playing freely and discovering new things and enjoying each other's company in this little secret backyard world.

Interested in booking me for a Pennsylvania photo session? Get in touch! 

Four Years Old

Last month, our big girl turned 4. I had no idea how much change she'd be going through from 3-4. The last month has certainly been an emotional roller coaster, but I enjoy seeing her begin to develop into a full fledged, opinionated and busy kid. Her grandparents decided to visit for the occasion and indulged her with multiple tea parties (per day). Of all her presents, can you guess which one she liked the most? Happiest of birthdays to our sweetest Marin. 

Baby Jude

A few months ago, Ayla and Chris asked me to come over to their home and do an in home maternity session, and we hit it off. I came back a second time to take some milk bath images of Ayla, which was also so fun (although my computer bit it and all the images disappeared-Ahhhh!). So when Baby Jude was finally born and Ayla asked me to take some photos of him, I was more than happy to say yes! We decided to use my house, in all its glorious light, for the session and I loved how the photos came out. So many congratulations and blessings to you, Ayla and Chris, with the birth of your sweet little boy!

52 Capture: Pursuing a Passion and Finding a Balance

week11Artboard 1.png

2016 was by far the worst year of my life, so in 2017, I thought about what was important to me and made a vow that I would turn my photography hobby into my career. Slowly but surely, I have begun to meet this goal, and today I can proudly say that I am truly fulfilling it. I have finally left my job I've kept for the past 3+ years to pursue photography full time. Ironically, the day after I resigned from my instructional designer gig, I was contacted by Unraveled Academy, an incredible online photography education site, whom I had emailed with suggestions for improving their online courses (because I'm obnoxious), and they asked me to join the team. So, looks like I'm back at it! But at least it's an opportunity to pursue both of my passions: education and photography.

That being said, I'm busier than ever and desperately trying to get all my ducks in a row. The challenge of working for yourself is that it's hard to shut it off. On top of it all, my 3-year-old has been giving us a run for our money the past few weeks and I notice that my lack of focus at home is causing her to feel ignored. Any tips on how to find a balance? I could use some suggestions! 

Luckily, she has preschool and her friends to help soften the blow of having to complete with a new baby and my husband's and my businesses for attention. Here are some of Marin and her best friend, Katie playing on the beach on a cloudy Sunday evening. They could care less that it was cold and overcast. So cute. 

Waiting for Baby

I've said it once and I'll say it again- I absolutely love doing maternity shoots. There is something just so beautiful about an expectant mother. Yes, her glow, but even more, it's that calmness and quiet excitement that seems to just radiate from pregnant women, like they've finally figured it all out, that makes people so drawn to them. Seriously, I've never been hit on and complimented more in my life than when I'm pregnant. Go figure!

I've always loved the idea that there are two (or more!) hearts beating in one body and I take great satisfaction in the fact that one day the babies of the ladies I photograph get to look at these pictures and enjoy learning about their stories of how they came to be. Here are the rest of the photos I took of the radiant Tina and her husband Spencer who will be meeting their little guy any day now! 

52 Capture: Busy Week

week10.png

This past week has been a little nuts. I'm currently leaving my job I've held the past few years as an instructional designer (eek!) to pursue my photography. Between finishing up on work projects, photographing and editing sessions, and working on some courses for my favorite photography resource ever Unraveled Academy, I'm a little frazzled. But all of these things are good, too, so I really can't complain. Another good thing that's going on in my life is that one of my photos has been selected to be featured in Dear Photographer Magazine! I'm so psyched. Hopefully, it actually gets published. 

As far as the family life goes, we are trying to find some calm in our constant chaos. Speaking of chaos, we were visited on a  rainy Tuesday by a flock (?) of four turkeys. They spent the day hanging out in our front walkway, picking at weeds, and trotting around on our roof. They even sang us some songs in response to Marin's loud, I'm-up-from-my-nap songs she belted out for about an hour in the afternoon. And just as suddenly as the appeared, they were gone. 

52 Capture: Rainy Day

week9.png

Rain has finally arrived in California! I'm not sure if it's because I am a fan of the trending hygge or because I now have little people to snuggle with, but I love being captive in my home while a rain storm pounds the ground outside. I find it all so cozy and it makes me happy. Hopefully, the storms keep coming so I can hunker down with my little ladies some more (and so our seeds that we've planted start to grow)! 

 

 

52 Capture: A Photographer's Evolution

week8.png

I have to admit that I am writing this on the fly- it's been a very busy week of spreading myself thin between lots of work, caring for my children (see my cuties below), and balancing a household while my husband drives around the western half of the U.S. A mother's work is never done!

DSC_3098-1-2.jpg

Like all creatives, I'm constantly thinking about how I can improve my work, but once I finally achieve something I love, I begin to reinvent the wheel and try something else. Lately, I've been staring HARD at my Instagram feed and trying to decide how I want to approach it for a more cohesive look. As I continue to review my work, I have found that my regular editing style doesn't always translate my vision, so I have been tweaking and trying some different editing techniques as well that are a little more subdued and include more black + whites. (I'm in the middle of editing an AMAZING maternity session with my tweaked approach and can't help but post a few images from our session right away.)

It's difficult not to compare myself to others, especially when there's some OUTSTANDING talent out there, but as I learn more and more about my craft and my own vision for my work, I feel proud to produce images that captures important moments in my clients' (and my own) lives. They may not be perfect, but they still gift us an opportunity to forever remember an important (or seemingly insignificant!) time in our lives. Every time a photo from my eldest daughter's baby years pops up on my computer screensaver, I am instantly transported back to a moment I may have otherwise forgotten and I am so grateful to have this reminder of how quickly time flies by and how important it is for me to document it. 

DSC_4321-1.jpg

I will keep documenting my evolution as a photographer for the next year in hopes that I get closer to this unknown place I clumsily lumber towards. If you're interested in following me on this creative journey, please subscribe to my newsletter which I will set up in the next week or so.

In the meantime, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook. I'd love to get your feedback on my posts! Hope you all have a great weekend. <3