2013 - A Year in Review, Sort Of - Denver, Colorado Photographer

2013 was an incredible year in many ways.  We are fortunate to have been in business since 2001 and continue to love what we do!  I could list the many weddings and events that we've done this year, but I also feel it's important to share personal work as well.  In the off season, I continue my education and dedication to being the best that I can be and I feel it's also important to take the time to recharge my creative batteries!   Going to new places and seeing new things help to recharge my creative batteries, which leads me to travel photography. Travel photography is quite challenging.  You don't really know what you will be capturing.  Sure, you can document surroundings but will the people you encounter want their photo taken?  Am I being respectful of where I am in this moment?  By having my camera, will I take myself out of the experience to photograph what is happening?  Those are some questions I ask myself when I'm out and about.  Not only do I recharge myself by seeing new and different things, but I also feel that my photography skill only improves with these experiences.

I will continue to blog the many heartfelt weddings and family sessions that we have done this past year, but for now I'd like to share with you some images from my travels from early last year.  There were no solid plans that were followed, everything you see here (with the exception of a couple of photos of myself), was every day life unfolding.  The sights, smells, colors, people and experiences will stay with me for a long time.  The countries represented in this photo montage are:  Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos.

I could go on and on about my business achievements for the year, but for this one post, in the early "new" year, I'd like to share with you these images that are responsible for recharging my batteries, making me a more authentic and aware photographer!

Best Wishes for another amazing and creative year - Happy 2014!

Enjoy!

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Meeting Mila! Denver Wedding and Portrait Photographer

  Meet Laura and la familia, with their newest addition, adorable Mila.  Honestly, it did take a few weeks to get on Laura's calendar to do this portrait session.  Can you blame her?  It's summer time and with 2 kids and a newborn, she certainly has no shortage of activities and things to do!  And, to be honest (again), I had met Mila long before - at Laura's maternity session and officially when she was about an hour old! Laura had a really specific vision for this session, mainly "I want the session in our bedroom and I want the kids to do whatever they want".  Of course, that entailed jumping on the bed, watching cartoons and lots of laughing and being goofy!  I loved how she just wanted to really capture her family just being themselves in their own sanctuary.  Reese and Owen are so fun to photograph, both very expressive in their own individual ways.  It was also hilarious (says the one who doesn't have kids) to get a shot of Laura just being a Mom, exasperatingly giving up on trying to get a photo of the 3 of them with baby Mila at the top of the stairs.  What can you do?  As I've learned and witnessed over the many years of being a photographer, when children are involved, you just have to see what you get!  I love surprises!  And, I love this family to the moon and back! Enjoy!

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Southeast Asia Travel Photos - Denver Photographer

  I think this photo perfectly sums up Southeast Asia!  There is so much activity everywhere you go.  At first, I wasn't happy with this capture and thought I wouldn't keep it.  However, the more I look at it, the more I love it!

Enjoy!

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Never Stop Wandering - Denver Photographer

  I'm slowly going through some of my images from my trip to Southeast Asia and found this gem.  Enjoy!

 

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Friends - Denver Wedding Photographer

  “A good friend is a connection to life - a tie to the past, a road to the future, the key to sanity in a totally insane world.”  ― Lois Wyse

 

Meet Laura - I'm sure some of you know of Laura.  We are both photographers.  We met many years ago and, way back in the day, helped and inspired each other to grow our wedding photography businesses.  There were no on-line forums or photography groups that you could learn from like there are today - we just had each other and another dear friend - Jamee.  We were the 3 musketeers.  We would meet and talk about our businesses - our ups, downs and the challenges we had.  Jamee was the first to get married and both Laura and I photographed her wedding.  Laura was the second to get married and Jamee photographed her wedding (I was unfortunately working that day).  We were close and we still are.

I was pleasantly surprised when Laura told me she was expecting her third child!  Wow!  How life ebbs and flows!  I was fortunate to have photographed her two other pregnancies, so I insisted on this one as well!  It's amazing that no matter where the 3 of us are in our lives, we can just pick up right where we left off and not miss a beat.

To my lovely, lovely girlfriends - You are in my hearts, forever.  I love you both so dearly, words could never express how much you mean to me!

With Lots of Love!

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Let's Do Shots - Headshots, That Is! Denver Photographer

  Here is a recent Headshot photo session that I did in LoDo - If you need a headshot or a few "business casual" photos, I'm your girl!

Enjoy!

 

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Personal Project - Heart Rocks from All Over the World

  I really like to collect things when I travel, especially natural objects!  Things that I collect are sand (yes, you read that correctly!), sea shells, beach glass and heart rocks.  I was given my very first heart rock by my step-daughter which started my collection.  Of course, that particular one is the most precious one to me!  I've now collected quite a few rocks and my "rock shelf" was overflowing, so I decided to try and display them in a little more organized fashion (I gave in to my Type A!).   I love thrifting, so I found these 2 shelves at my favorite thrift store, painted them and borrowed a glue gun and I love how they came out!  Finding a heart rock is just like finding Love (it could be right in front of your eyes if you just look for it).

Enjoy!

 

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Meet Elliott - Foster Pup - Denver Photographer

This is Elliott!  I say that very enthusiastically because he is so stinking adorable!  After I lost my Quinn last year, I've wanted to ease back in (if at all) to pet ownership.  I missed having a dog and so fostering has been fun.  It feels really good to just provide a loving and stable environment for dogs that have been mistreated!

He is as of now before I change my mind available for adoption.

Enjoy!

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I'm A Traveling Fool

  “Art flourishes where there is a sense of adventure.” ~ Alfred North Whitehead

I recently returned from a 6 week trip to Southeast Asia.  I shot over 7700 digital images and 50 rolls of film.  To try and describe the amazing wonders, sights, smells, experiences and people that I had met along the way would do a great disservice to them.  To try and describe how such a trip has affected me, as a person and an artist, would be a great disservice to myself.  All I can say, for right now, is that what an adventure it was!  There is only one thing that I am certain of - there will be more trips and adventuring in my very near future!  I have been bitten and smitten by the travel bug!

Enjoy!  More images to come!

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Destination Wedding - Crystal Springs Golf Resort, New Jersey

One of the most fun things to do is to get on a plane with all your gear, fly to another state and shoot with another photographer at venue you've never been to before.  I'm telling you - THAT IS FUN!  Here is an image that I got while shooting with Kevin at Crystal Springs Golf Resort in New Jersey.

 

Grace St. Stephens Church and Broadmoor's Cheyenne Lodge Wedding - Colorado Springs, Colorado

  Meet Patterson and Patrick!  They had a stunning wedding at Grace St. Stephens Church and a beautiful reception at Broadmoor's Cheyenne Lodge.  In addition to Patterson and Patrick being so kind, fun and gracious, there were so many things I loved about this wedding!  Their first look was so emotional - I don't even think they were prepared for the tears as no one (not even us) had anything handy to dry the tears that flowed!   Patrick and his niece Izzy had the cutest matching dimples!!  And, I loved how close Patterson was to all of her girlfriends!  The handkerchief had each of her girlfriend's initials and wedding date embroidered on it - accompanying each new bride/friend down the aisle on each of their own wedding days!

Enjoy!

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One Sweet Little Moment - Denver Wedding Photographer

  I recently saw a post in one of the photography forums asking the question "what is the number one draw for inspiration in your work?".  I had to sit there and think and, to be honest, got a little irritated with myself because I could think of a few things, but not just one.  I moved on to other posts on Facebook and promptly forgot about this one.

While editing recently, I came across this really special moment.  And then I knew.  I knew what my #1 inspiration in my own work was:  connection.  I love being connected to my clients, their families and friends.  I love witnessing their connections with each other.  I love how they trust me with these tender moments and let me into their lives to witness and record one of the most sacred things between a couple:  the forming of a new family.  They let me see them at some of their more vulnerable moments - crying with happiness (and sadness), laughing, dancing, drinking, elation and, at times, frustration.  In these moments, memories are made and I'm ever so grateful to be witnessing and recording them!

Enjoy!

Wedding Tip #1 - Knowing What Time the Sun Goes Down on Your Wedding Day - Denver Wedding Photographer

  I thought it would be a good idea to offer some helpful wedding photography tips to planning brides and grooms.  So, here we go!

I'm a huge fan of variety - in lighting and locations!  The more variety in both, the better!  So, when helping a bride plan her timeline for the day, I research what time sunset will be and let her know.  I suggest taking the bride and groom out of the reception to do some fun and relaxed portraits during sunset or the magic hour - which is right after sunset but before it gets completely dark.

Enjoy this beautiful sunset from a wedding in Steamboat Springs!

 

An Engagement Session in New York City - New York

  That is not a typo!!  I recently returned from helping a friend photograph a wedding in New Jersey at the very swanky Crystal Springs Resort.  Kevin gave me a warm New York welcome by scheduling an engagement session in the City before the weekend so we could get our creativity a kick start!  We had a blast!  We started at the High Line Park, a brand new park that was an existing freight line elevated above the street.  The transformation is unreal!  The park is modern and just a breath of fresh air!  If you are ever in NYC, I highly recommend a stroll (and some gelato!) through the High Line.

Enjoy!

Seeing What is Right in Front of You - Found Images - Denver Photographer

When I'm not on high alert photographing weddings, I like to stop, take a deep breath and look around for interesting objects.  Recently I photographed three Steamboat Springs weddings in a row - that is a lot of driving!  As we journeyed through Colorado, I noticed an area I really wanted to explore and made a mental note of it.  The following weekend when we drove through, we allotted time to pull off for just 30 minutes so that I could do just that - explore - of course with a camera in my hand!  The water was low and there were so many beautiful things to photograph!  Of course, I mixed in a few random photos from Steamboat as well (who can resist horses along a fence in the countryside?).

Doing a bit of personal work really is rejuvenating, even though they are random snapshots!

Enjoy!

 

Yoga Yoga Yoga - One of my Favorite Things - Denver Photographer

  Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself. - George Bernard Shaw

Yoga has taught me to believe in this quote wholeheartedly.

I'm posting a few yoga portraits that I've taken of my fabulous friend and yoga mentor, Lauren Duker.  A few years ago I went through a major transformation in my life and I feel that Lauren was one of those instrumental persons in my life who helped me through it.  Yoga has a special meaning to me - it helped me face fears, grow, become stronger both mentally and physically and I can't help but feel that my life has been enriched (and prolonged) by doing yoga.

Now go get your Downward Dog on - Enjoy!

Denver Yoga Portraits, Creative Yoga Portraits Denver, Denver Yoga Portrait Photographer

Denver Yoga Portraits, Creative Yoga Portraits Denver, Denver Yoga Portrait Photographer

I'll Have a Double - Steamboat Springs, Colorado

A double rainbow, that is!

While in Steamboat Springs for a wedding, my second photographer and I decided to hit Strawberry Hot Springs for a leisurely soak.  What luck to be soaking in such a beautiful setting when a stunning rainbow appeared - and then, to our amazement - it became a double!   Nature is truly astonishing!

Enjoy!

A Hike and My Bucket List - A Trip to O'ahu, Hawai'i

  When I first heard about the Haiku Stairs (aka Stairway to Heaven), I knew I had to do it!  Somehow....Someday....

There were a few challenges to address:  1)  Injury or Death   2)  It was (and still is) illegal - possible trespassing ticket or - worst case scenario - arrest  3)  There is a guard posted at the beginning of the stairs to turn away hikers.  The actual stairs (3,922 steps) traverse over several private properties, and no one really wants to be liable for ...see #1.

My first attempt was in November - after getting lost at 5am in the morning in a thick (and VERY dark) bamboo forrest, we were turned away by the guard!  It's okay, I knew I would be back in May.

My second attempt - success!  We researched and planned ahead.  From our research, we knew the guard usually arrived at 3am - and to see the sunrise from such a vantage point, would have been great from a photography standpoint, but I did not want to attempt 3,922 steps in the dark.  So, we decided to attempt at 3:30pm - and made it!  Here are a few photos of the hike - it was truly amazing!  We didn't see a single other person on the stairs the entire time (about 3 hours).  At one point, the sun broke through the clouds, and it was a truly beautiful sight to see!  I'm not sure if I would classify this hike as death defying, but I would not recommend it to anyone who wasn't an avid hiker.  My calves hurt for a week!  The weather was perfect - this area is known for lots of rain - and the stairs can become slick since they are all metal.

Enjoy!

 

 

Home Sweet Home - A Trip to O'ahu, Hawai'i

  Here are just a few of my favorites from my trip back home in May.  We were there to photograph one of my closest friends' wedding and we built in a few extra days to hike and enjoy our surroundings - after all - it's Hawai'i and my HOME!

We did so much hiking that I think a vacation from this vacation was warranted - sometimes 2 hikes in 1 day!  Hawai'i is simply a beautiful place and my camera never left my hands - even when we were in the water!

Enjoy!

 

I Can't Get Enough of....

  Sea Turtles!  Or, in Hawaiian, they are known as Honu(s).  To me, they seem like butterflies underwater - they are so graceful!

These photos are from a recent trip to Hawaii for a friend's wedding.  I have a great underwater housing to go with my Canon G11.  We built in a few extra days after the wedding to take in our surroundings!   More scenic photos to come!

Enjoy!