Saturday, October 31, 2009


happy halloween to all you trick-or-treaters out there today!

kittycat loves halloween. i mean, c'mon! who doesn't?

my favorite part(s) of this holiday:
. cute little kids in costumes with EARS. oh how i love hoods with little ears.
. pumpkins! (of course!)
. candy corn... don't even get me started.
. christmas music! 'tis the season... and no, it's not too early. don't try to convince me- losing battle. ;)

i think i've mentioned a couple times that earlier this month i shot a few families in new york... just a few. :) one of these families had a GREAT shoot in albany's washington park...

we fed ducks

threw leaves

did a few awesome dance moves

and just enjoyed the day together.

beautiful fall colors, beautiful day, beautiful family. :)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

thinking out loud.


as far as the pacific northwest goes, winter is here. to me, fall consists of colorful trees and cooler days, crunchy leaves and breaking out the long sleeves. winter happens all of a sudden while i'm looking the other direction- without much warning, leaves are soggy and wet, trees are more naked than not, and i'm desperate for scarves and layers to help keep me warm. thankfully i have a great pair of galoshes to help me survive this rainy season, and lots of warm memories coupled with the hope that spring always shows up eventually. :)

some of you know a bit of my story. the story of a girl who picked up her dad's old nikon sitting by his dresser (after it had collected dust for 20+ years) and asked him to teach her the basics. the girl who, all while growing up, tried music lessons and dance and horseback riding and soccer, yet none of it stuck. however, with a camera in her hands, a part of her came alive. she learned on film and eventually moved to digital, all the while swearing that she'd never, ever do this for other people. it was a gift, only for her, and she never wanted to chance ruining it.

:) my, how things change.

i've been shooting for 7 years now, and through a lot of practice, trial and error (sometimes more error than trial), and a variety of circumstances that pushed me out of my comfort zone over a year ago to begin trying to do this professionally rather than only for personal enjoyment, i find myself here. photography has been my full time job since last spring. much to my amazement, others had so much confidence and faith in me, and entrusted me with their weddings, families, events, their memories. i've shot a lot of photos in the past year, more than i'd ever expect.

however, here's the part where i tell you the truth: i am not a business person. :) i'm also one who oftentimes learns as she goes. ha. i'm trying, i'm learning. at least i'm starting to. :)

part of my philosophy is to remain affordable. i am not in this for the "big bucks." :) money does not drive me. if we could barter in exchange for my food, my rent, my transportation costs... you'd have yourself an instant deal. :) not being motivated by getting rich, not being a natural business person, wanting to provide quality images at an affordable price has however made for some interesting times on my end.

pricing is subjective, and affordability is also subjective. i am not rich, not at all. i go without, buy things on sale, and believe simplicity is the best answer 9 times out of 10. yet i realize that i can't continue booking trips like my october trip to new york which held 2 weddings and 14 smaller shoots in less than two weeks. burnout, anyone? :) i want to continue to love to do this. i want to have room to pursue continually pushing myself to grow in creativity and technique. i want to do my best for you. i also want to be able to pay my rent. :)

when i started doing this for others, i was charging next to nothing for a family photoshoot... and i was happy to do that! i loved the opportunity to get to know and shoot these wonderful people and push myself to see what this could become. at the time i was also working another full time job and so paying the rent wasn't that big of a deal. :) now that this is my living, i have to force myself to think through things differently. it's a much more challenging endeavor for me, yet i'm not going to run from it.

know that as i wrestle with the balance, my commitment to meet you halfway remains the same. i am not even close to rich :) and i think my prices remain fair and affordable. i have had multiple situations, even with the pricing that i consider very reasonable, where people approach me and say "hey, listen. i respect what you're charging... but i honestly can't afford your rates. is there any way we could meet in the middle?" i respect their honesty so much and have tons of empathy for how much it costs to plan a wedding, raise a family, pay the bills, put food on the table. i can be flexible if you need me to be. i love doing that and invite you to be open with me about what you're looking for in a photographer and what you can afford. i promise to return the honesty your way and if it's at all possible, find a solution that works for both of us.

thanks for listening to my rambling today. i promise to get a more photo-saturated blog up quite soon. also keep your eyes peeled for a few updates to my website... i'm excited about changing it up a little!

have a great day. :) thanks for your continued support and excitement about what i'm doing here! it means so much.

Monday, October 19, 2009

(in memory)

in mid august, i shot a wonderful wedding in the portland area. spending time with the sister of the bride, valerie, was definitely a highlight of that day. i remember talking with her about new england living (as we are both from the northeast), admired her tattoos, talked with her about her beautiful children, and also enjoyed watching her interact with those she loved on this happy, happy day. a few hours ago i heard the sad news that valerie passed away and my heart hurts for her parents, her sister, her children, and her friends.

it's a privilege to capture life.

it was a privilege to capture valerie.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

rain, rain, go away

well, today i got a taste of what the next (6?) months of work might be like in oregon.

arrive @ laurelhurst park in se portland.

family arrives @ laurelhurst park in se portland.

family dog chases sticks.

family dog chases other park dwellers.

family dog refuses to sit for family photos.

ignore family dog.

family photos (click, click).

where did that sun go?

um. it's getting kind of dark.

is that thunder?

TORRENTIAL DOWNPOUR. (run to cars. reschedule.)

haha. oh, dear. i drove home in the oregon rain that i love, and called my afternoon appointment to reschedule that as well. rain boots and umbrellas also make mighty cute photos, but this kind of rain is more than just a couple of drops. we're talking BUCKETS. pour pour pour pour.

no shoots today.


this afternoon i'll curl up under a blanket with tea and some editing. that sounds like a pretty decent deal.

in other news, i'm (obviously) back from new york. i ended up doing 14 (!) smaller shoots and two weddings... in 13 days. holysmokes! thanks to all you new yorkers who always show me so much love and support. i had the best time with you all. i was itching for home (oregon) but you made my stay so lovely. many thanks.

i feel as though i'm still transitioning and still attempting to figure out what i want this business to look like. i love it, i do... but i also miss the creative outlet that photography used to be to me, and i also tend to overbook at times (heh) so that then i feel like the quality of my work declines. :(. any and all input is welcome, as i love doing this for others and probably always will do this to some extent, but i also want to give myself balance in life and room to breathe. hmmm.

look out for an update to the website soon! i figure it's almost time to put up another featured wedding and add some of these lovely fall shots to the galleries. :) colored leaves, mmm-mmm good.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

a thought before flying

hello there!

tonight, i'll catch the red-eye on my way to upstate new york, where i'm from. while there, i have the privilege to shoot two weddings and (hopefully) 11 families, although weather forecasts and limited weekend hours are potentially putting a kink in those plans. regardless, i'm super excited to see familiar faces, hug my family and my kitty, and take a breather from the norm.

this past spring (while still living on the east coast), i was shooting families at this park where they plant beautiful tulips for a tulip festival around mother's day. i'd kept the files, but never bothered to edit them until just last week. the one shot that stuck out to me kind of resonated a bit with some of what i've been thinking about as of late.

sometimes, life doesn't work out the way you plan. oftentimes it doesn't work out that way. :) some of us fit into molds and expectations and norms... others, not so much. i find myself in that latter category more times than not and although i love and thrive on things that are unique, it completely frustrates me as well. can't one thing in my life work out like i hope, can't i be just a LITTLE normal? that remains to be seen. right now it isn't looking that way, despite all my efforts and energy. however... being unique in one way or another enables us to dream bigger, crazier dreams than the average, to love thinking outside the box because we've got to. i rarely understand what's going on in the moment, but later on i often look back and have an "ah-HA" kind of moment. this is a beautiful thing.

i'm not giving up on the hopes i have, instead i'll hold them loosely. if they don't end up working out, the only thing i have left to do is stop trying to make things happen when i have no control, and instead start dreaming different dreams that don't look anything like my current reality. think outside the box. different = amazing.