Wide awake…

I only slept about 5 hours last night, and about 4 hours the night before.. but here it is, 1:45 in the morning and I’m wide awake. I have to be up in 4 hours but I’m just not tired. I was editing a family session tonight for a client who’s picking it up around 9:00 am tomorrow.. or “today” I should say. I wanted to throw together (ha) a slideshow for her when she came by to see her images, but of course (have you MET me?) that turned into about 3 hours of editing the slideshow, creating starting and ending pages, adding music, then discovering iDVD on my mac which I dont think I’ve ever used before. So… now my client is going to go home with a DVD of her images set to music. Hmm.. seems like that should be an option for every client. Time to rewrite the packages.. again!  😉

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I mean come on.. there are a million photographers out there…

Photography, to me, is truly great when it makes you laugh out loud, or when it draws out an actual emotion or feeling of connection. If I cant make my clients feel something when I present the images from their session, I’m not great. I ONLY want to be great at what Im passionate about. That’s what I am truly striving for. And that’s why taking TOO many sessions, or taking clients or weddings where there is no chemistry between me and the client, is counter productive – keeping me from my goal.

I dont want to feel forced to get through the editing of a session. I want to approach each one as a challenge… unlimited by time, fatigue, stress, and lack-of-streaming-creativity due to burnout. It’s not about offering cheaper sessions to everyone who wants them. I’ll be less and less of an artist if I go that route, as I begin to lose passion… It’s about offering art that is brilliant EVERY time. The people out there who want that will also understand the value. So I will take fewer sessions.. fewer weddings.. but spend the same time working, perfecting, learning, giving back, rethinking, improving, connecting, and capturing more and more of the beauty, whimsy, humor and awe in the world that I see through my priceless portrait lens.

Love to all. ❤

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iPhone wallpapers.. just a start…

Sometimes I snap shots of things that I dont end up posting or printing. It bothers me that these images would be stored on my hard drive and never really used or enjoyed. So when I came across the idea to give away iphone wallpapers, I thought it would be a perfect solution! I’ll try to post these weekly, or as often as I have them. If you like the image and want to download it, it’s free and you’re welcome to it.

Today’s are a couple of photos I took at the botanic gardens in Fort Worth at the butterfly conservatory with my third child, Drew, when I went with him on a field trip. Feel free to share the love! Just click on the image, then right click and save a copy of the full size.

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meet Gabe…

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Dance for Joy Parents – Memory Book Preview

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album design…

I’m working on an album this weekend. There is nothing I love more than designing books and albums. When I do a shoot,  I tend to think in terms of how the shots will fit on a page. The way wide angles, close ups, detail shots and perspectives will work together.

There are so many album companies all over the country that I considered when I started my search for wedding albums/books. The one I fell in love with is one I found through my favorite photographers in Seattle (SarahRhoads.com). The album company is Renaissance Albums, and I believe they make the best albums in the country. All the books are 100% handmade in New York. You can see more at RenaissanceAlbums.com.

The books I’m doing today are not wedding albums, but recital albums for the dance classes I have been working with since the middle of April. I will be designing an album for each class (6 classes total) that will showcase the black and white art portraiture from the recital, and individual color candids I took of the girls during their individual sessions. I think this is such a great option for the parents who will want to look back in 5 and 10 years but may not have framed prints from the recital displayed anymore. How convenient and sentimental is it to have a book you can pull off your shelf or keep on your coffee table to flip through and see all of the beautiful photographs in one place?

Have I mentioned I LOVE ALBUMS?

Photographs are invaluable. When my clients book a session with me I know that they’ve hired me to be the artist that takes their lives, and find the most visually intriguing, genuinely creative, non-contrived way to capture it and turn it into fine art. So I feel the session is finally complete when I know that the story that was told with those images is preserved and displayed in the way they were designed. It just gives me warm fuzzies. 🙂

Now – I have work to do.

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What is a “lifestyle session”?

Lifestyle sessions are my favorite sessions to plan, shoot and edit. It’s a way to get close into the clients’ lives and bring their lives out in  a series of images. This session was a lifestyle engagement session.

Ronnda and Bryan are getting married at the end of May this year. They told me they love to travel to small towns and festivals around Texas. We planned a “travel” style session and they brought the things they love to take on road trips.  I got to hear great stories about laffy taffy jokes, sudoku and the blanket that Bryan made for Ronnda. We used a lot of their memories/experiences in their session to capture the couple in their true element. I’m so happy with the result.

I couldnt have asked for a more fun couple to work with. Funny, spontaneous, unpredictable… But hopefully you can see that in their storyboard below. 🙂

Thank you Ronnda and Bryan! Looking forward to the wedding!

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