The lovely Joy - pregnant with baby number two. I've loved photographing Joy's pregnancies - she literally radiates the entirety of the sun; just gorgeous...
Allison is an incredible young woman; she is a survivor many times over and a fierce warrior princess. At the age of 12, she was diagnosed with a unique bone cancer that required the removal and replacement of her femur. She wanted to do a shoot where could show her scars so she can share her story of survival with the young cancer patients she volunteers to work with. What a privilege it was to work with her - truly.
A few from today's session with Shelly; channeling a little Audrey Hepburn ")
It seems like every shoot I've had in the new studio brings the rain storms through Denver! Ha - the joke's on you, rain, I am loving the dark and moody feel of these portraits. ")
I bought a couple of beautiful tulle skirts for the studio and we've been playing around with them a bit. I can't help but to want to put everyone in them - they're so beautiful and dreamy!
With the passing of his mother and grandmother within the same year, Don wanted to be photographed with a door handle from his grandmother's house. "It's something that everyone in my family has touched." It was a very poignant moment during our shoot. It's such an honor to be able to capture not only milestones and happy occasions, but also these quiet and precious moments, too...
Madison is an old soul; smart, interesting, and of course quite beautiful... ")
Ohhh - I am so happy with my first shoot in the new studio! This lovely girl is Olivia - she just turned 11 and has started 6th grade. Such a sweetheart - and she loves tulle, so we had to play with that, of course. What a special milestone. ")
I thought, perhaps, going to Spain and walking 800 km was going to be a challenge - a journey which would move and shake me to my core and make me really re-evaluate my life. When I got back home, however, I was quick to shrug off the magnitude of that experience; in fact, I was almost nonchalant about it. Ha. Three months later, I can look back and see that it did all of those things - and probably many more things that I've yet to understand. I am both exhausted and invigorated and thrilled for this next chapter to unfold.
Transitions are challenging. These shaky times are neither good or bad (because it's about learning, right?), and an incredible window through which we can really examine who we are at our core and make choices accordingly. Many of the components of my own transition are personal, but it would be impossible to come out of that experience in Spain and not want to do more with my work - push myself into some other realm.
I love taking pictures. I love taking pictures of people and food and of beautiful things which inspire and move me at very deep levels. I have my own ways and don't particularly care for following the rules or being confined or restrained when it comes to photography, but coming back from Spain, I knew it was time to narrow my focus and that focus is portraiture. Vanity Fair-inspired portraiture with available light - so a combination of things I know and do very well with some unknowns thrown in there for good measure and to make me just squidgy enough that my OCD goes into overdrive in really good ways. Again with the challenges. ")
I'm in the process of building a new portfolio representative of the direction I'm going; in the meantime, I'm leaving my other work up. This is the last post in which I plan to be so self-indulgent - I simply wanted to share this bit of professional enlightenment because I'm excited and also so that I have a reference point.
On Monday, August 15, I will move into a new studio space at 240 South Broadway (above Bardo Coffee House). Very much looking forward to being enveloped in the creative space there and seeing what kinds of magic my clients and I can make.
One other change - no more digital images. I've recently completed a couple of courses in making tin type and salt prints and being in the darkroom again has reinforced one of the most important components of photography - the physical print. By creating beautiful prints, matting them, and putting them in a gorgeous folio box I'm assured that I've done my job fully and my clients will have a wonderful keepsake - a piece of their legacy - which will last for generations to come. #existinphotographs
One last thing to share: I'm obsessed with food - not just any food, but the masterpieces created by some of the finest chefs in the world. These artists give me life - which is to say - inspiration and motivation to be better in my own realm. If you know me well, you've heard me say a hundred times that Chef's Table (Netflix) is my porn; I've watched those episodes over and over (and over) again. Grant Achatz (Alinea) is everything. His work makes me weep. As does the work of Dominque Crenn (Atelier Crenn et Petit Crenn) - but even more than the thrilling concepts they have around culinary preparation and presentation are their philosophies about life having gone through their own transitional periods.
At the end of her episode, Crenn says, "Looking for that place where I can settle and I'm not sure I'm there yet. It's about being on the path of learning until the end of your life. When you realize your dream, it's not a dream anymore - there are other dreams that come to you."
So - here's to new dreams, new adventures, and the transitions that birth them.
I want to thank Gio Toninelo and Travis Volz of Rocket House for making my beautiful video. I'm so grateful that I get to do what I love to do and that I am surrounded by such wonderfully delightful and creative people. My heart overflows...
It's entirely possible that one might infer from the title (and the pictures from today's shoot with Heidi) that this post is about Before and After shots. And it was going to be - until I decided it's probably about time for me to start talking about my own Before and After.
I'm in uncharted territory. For the first time since becoming a professional photographer (six years ago), I've decided to focus on branding and marketing my business. Until now, I've solely relied on word of mouth and Thumbtack (which used to be a great mechanism to connect clients and professionals, unfortunately, not so much anymore).
I would curse myself for being so bad at branding and marketing - - - until I realized I wasn't bad at it, I'd just never learned how to do it. So, I'm learning - every day, all day I'm getting my head in that game - reframing my thoughts and internal messaging, researching, studying, keeping my head down and doing the work, naming my goals, and planning the future. I no longer sit and whine about not being good at these things - I'm actually really enjoying the process and it's also helping me understand who I am as a photographer - and business owner, for that matter.
That being said, I'm in the early-ish stages of my evolution and there's a long list of things yet to accomplish (including the revamping of this website), but I'm having the most incredible time and am looking forward to opening myself up in ways I never would or could before.
Until just now, I didn't intend to share this behind-the-scenes process, but then I thought, 'why not?' So - giddy up!
Heidi and how I came to photograph her are two stories which deserve their own posts, so, I'll come back to that piece. Until then, I'd just like to share this thought - gratitude is the first best place to start any endeavor. ")
I'm beginning to explore the use of video more seriously in my work, so I made a wee practice run with my dad holding these poor, unopened peonies yesterday. I'm super excited to add this new dimension to my creative flow! ")
And, speaking of my dad...