Thursday, December 31, 2009

Home for Christmas

Zoe emailed me to set up a family shoot for when her brothers and their families were visiting home for Christmas. I loved hanging out with Zoe and her mom when I shot her senior pictures last summer, so I knew I'd love their family. It was so great to meet them all, and Zoe's brothers have adorable children!

They recommended we meet at the Bush House in Salem because it has a couple covered areas in case of rain, which was perfect, because after several days of no rain here it decided to pour about 30 minutes before their session! I prayed, prayed, prayed the rain would go away. I could see blue skies under those rain clouds and the thought of being restricted to photographing 10 people in only those two covered spots sounded so... well, restricting. :) Thank you Lord for answering my prayers, because the sun came out and we saw those blue skies about 15 min. into shooting!

We started out with some large family group shots, and then I broke them off and photographed smaller family groups.

Here's Zoe with her older brothers Dustin & Lincoln.

Here's Dustin & Austyn's family...

I love this shot of Austyn playing with little Brody.

Oh man, Brody is too cute for words. He's such a smiler!

Here's Lincoln & Jenna's family...

Don't they have beautiful girls? They have the cutest little personalities too!

Where it all began...

Sybil and Corey, you have a beautiful family! Thank you for asking me to capture this time when you were all together.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Having Some Fun

My brother Matt and sister-in-law, Gina, are both really talented. Matt can pretty much pick up any instrument and play it well and he writes music too. We always enjoy hearing his latest songs when we're hanging out as a family. He took a photography class last year that really connected with his creative side and he jumped right into it. Gina loves photography too and is always snapping photos at our family get-togethers! (She's also an amazing knitter and even plays the drums!)

After throwing the idea around for quite some time they decided to start a photography business! I'm so excited for them and know they're going to do great! And it's been fun to get to share with them some of the things I've learned over time. They want to mainly focus on HS Senior photography at first, so I thought it would be great to get a group of high schoolers together and do a shoot with Matt & Gina. It would give them a chance to build their portfolio and really, I just thought it would be fun! So these fantastic teenagers volunteered to be our subjects in the freezing cold, windy December weather and did such a great job! (Thank you Elizabeth, April, Hannah, Brennan & Jillian for being so wonderful!) Matt & Gina's website is in construction mode, but to book a session with them, you can check them out here:
They live in Eugene, OR, but will be doing photo shoots in surrounding areas too. Bookmark their blog to follow their progression.

I really like photographing groups in a setting where we're doing something active. We had arranged to have a green canoe that day and be able to do some other fun "lifestyle shots", but that fell through at the last minute. But it was great just to goof off and shoot anything we wanted. I also put down my 85mm lens that day and only shot with my 50mm and I re-fell-in-love with it. :) I use to only shoot with a 50mm until I bought my 85 and it became my favorite lens. (I rarely take it off my camera.) But I think I'll be using my 50mm a lot more again! You go 50, you go! :)

If any hs seniors in the future want to do their senior sessions together (in a group) I'm all for it!
Here are some of my shots from that day.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I'm Alive. Here's proof. :)

(Thanks to Matt & Gina, my brother and sister-in-law, for taking our photo! It was a freezing cold, very brief photo moment!)

Hi All!

Sorry I've been so absent from my blog. I had such an amazing and BUSY photo year, so I've been soaking up lots of down time in the past few weeks! Thank you all for making this year such a wonderful year! I loved getting to meet so many new people and loved seeing so many of your sweet familiar faces again! I'm blessed to photograph amazing people that all feel like good friends. I love that I get to do this!

Have you been having a nice Christmas season so far? We've been seeing friends and lots of family and enjoying many lazy days at home, cozied up in our warm house. We celebrated an early Christmas already at my dad and step-mom's last weekend. It was great! I'll try to muster up some energy to share photos with you soon. :) I think I'm still mentally in vacation mode.

On the drive down to Corvallis last weekend we were ahead of the freezing rain that was going to hit. It was an easy drive. But once we got into town and were headed over to my dad's we hit bad ice!! It was crazy. We watched cars slide around the roads. Once we realized we wouldn't make it out to my dad's (he lives up a big hill) we called some friends that we were near and they said we could stay with them for a night. They had another friend visiting who ended up staying the night too. We parked near their neighborhood and they hiked out to meet us with flashlights and helped carry the kids. We "skated" (kind of walked) across a road, through a ditch, up through a mini forest and into their neighborhood. Quite the adventure. Our friends made us cocoa and coffee and we played a board game that night. It was a lot of fun. We're so thankful for their hospitality!

The next day we made it to my dad and Janet's and the drive in was beautiful. They had smoke coming from their chimney, the Christmas tree was lit up, and the river next to their house was iced over in places and snowy. So peaceful. We had a lot of fun playing card games, eating a big dinner and too many butter rolls, exchanging gifts, eating apple-cranberry pie, and laughing. (Thank you Dad and Janet for everything!) I'm looking forward to more Christmas celebrating in the coming weeks.

So, I've learned the past 3 years that my photography year is very cyclical. I tend to shoot solid from spring through the end of fall (good weather months), then from about Thanksgiving to New Year's I take off (or maybe just do a couple shoots) and enjoy the holidays and slower days with family and mostly turn off my creative brain. By January I'm super inspired again, because I've hardly picked up my camera in weeks, and by then I'm dying to photograph just about anything! :) I love Jan/Feb shoots for that reason. So, I'm excited for the family time and inspiration that lie ahead. Merry Christmas Everyone!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Family Christmas Card Session

We're blessed to live next door to friends. We've had many fun nights of tea, conversation, getting whipped by them at the game Password, and enjoying Trader Joe's cookies. We haven't been able to hang out as often as we'd like lately, but winter always slows life down a bit, so I'm looking forward to more Pete & Rosie time.
I love getting to photograph them at Christmas time each year!

I love this photo of Daphne... too cute! :)

And James always has the sweetest smile.

By the end James was done with my camera and the cold weather, but still cute! :)

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

More of Sweet Baby Harlen

Oh my, I was gone 4 days for Thanksgiving and feel like I've been absent from my blog for a lifetime! :)

Well, I want to share more photos of handsome Harlen, as promised!
When I first arrived to photograph him he seemed so, so tiny. My first thought was, "my kids were never that little" and of course I was wrong as soon as I found out what Harlen weighed. I guess my kids were even smaller! How quickly we forget! And how quickly they grow. That's why it's so fun to have these pictures of our little ones when they are... well, little. :)
Harlen was only 9 days old when I photographed him. It took him a while to fall asleep, but once he was out he allowed us to move him around a bit. I got to hang out with his wonderful parents and get to know them as we watched Harlen drift off to sleep. He's a blessed boy.
Here are a few more pics of him.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Baby Harlen

It's hard not to get the baby bug when you photograph a newborn this beautiful. I'm just in the midst of editing sweet little Harlen's photos, so I'll share more when I'm finished.

Monday, November 16, 2009

The skies parted...

Driving to meet Jennifer and her beautiful family was an act of faith. :) It was pouring down rain. Not casually raining, not sprinkling, but really, really raining. I dialed her number twice thinking, "there's no way we're going to be able to shoot today", but never hit send. I happened to drive by our shooting location earlier that day and there was this patch of blue skies right above it. Really amazing considering there were dark nasty storm clouds on both ends of the property. When I arrived it was still that way! As if the skies had parted for our little shoot. :) It was wonderful!!

I had a great time with Jennifer, Elliot and adorable lil' miss Maddie. What a fun family and all so in love with each other! Here are some of my favorites.