Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Showit Freedom Tour

Can I just tell you how much DC rocked the house on Monday?  We packed the downstairs of Ebenezer's Coffee House to learn more about Showit and be inspired by some seriously talented individuals in the photography (and graphic design) industry!

After Kevin provided some one-on-one training, Molly Jenson entertained us all with her smooth sound as people trickled in, caught up with old friends, and made new ones.  And not only is Molly super nice, but the girl is funny as well.  Seriously.  She's got jokes.  I picked up her new album "Maybe Tomorrow" and I love it!

David Jay kicked off the line-up with some words of inspiration, and The Boudoir Divas took the stage.  I've never really considered doing boudoir before, but their work is so tasteful and beautiful that I may give it a second thought.  Maybe.  In the future.  The very distant future.

Jim Davis Hicks.  Not only is he a great photographer, but he also gives back to the world.  And he gives back big.  He founded Thirst Relief International, an organization that helps provide safe drinking water to thousands of families each year. To read more about this organization's efforts or make a donation, click here

And last, but certainly not least, was Promise Tangeman.  (Yes, that's her real name!)  She is super sweet, super fun, and super talented!  I hate to pick favorites, but I'm going to!  She was my favorite speaker of the evening.  Probably because she's a graphic designer (she speaks my language!) as well as a photographer.  So everything she talked about resonated with me.  I had a chance to talk with her at the end of the night, and I absolutely love this girl!

You always hear about how nice of a guy DJ is, but....  Okay, it's absolutely true.  I only talked to him for a minute, but he is one of the most down-to-earth, sincere guys I've ever met.  Thank you, DJ, for your constant inspiration and genuine love for others.  Also, thank you for bringing the Showit Freedom tour to DC!!

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Monday, June 28, 2010

Bridal Tea: Nairi

I love bridal showers.  They are intimate settings with the bride's closest friends and family.  And what I love even more is a themed bridal shower, complete with florals, place settings, and jaw-dropping details.  I recently had the pleasure of documenting Nairi's bridal tea, which was planned and flawlessly put together by the ever-amazing Karla Mitchell of Kelley Cannon Events.  I'm a details girl - I could document details morning, noon and night, every day of the week, twice on Sunday, and even in my sleep - and Karla's attention to detail never disappoints.  Nairi's bridal tea had a hint of Alice in Wonderland theme, and made for a beautiful backdrop to a fun and celebratory event.

I was captivated by Nairi from the first moment I met her, and if she didn't already have tons of loyal and wonderful friends, I may have just tried to make her my BFF!  She's beautiful, fun, and oh-so-sweet with a little touch of wild side.  This girl loves Madonna and used to entertain her family with renditions of "Like a Virgin" when she was a child. 

Thank you, Nairi, for allowing me to capture your special celebration, and thank you, Karla, for putting together such a beautiful event!

 I loved these monogrammed mugs from Anthropologie!

Ohmyword.'re GORGEOUS!

Nairi's nod to Madonna...

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Sunday, June 27, 2010

Naval Academy Wedding: Katie & Jared

Can I just tell you about this church?!  It was un-believable!  If all churches had the amazing light, architecture, detail and color that this church had, I would be in wedding photographer heaven. 

The weather was beautiful.  The day was picture perfect.  And then it took an unexpected turn.  I was set to 3rd shoot for Melissa Manzione Photography.  I arrived at her home and we briefly discussed the schedule of the day.  Then Melissa, Nick and I gathered up our gear and headed for her car.  But we all stopped short before we reached it.  One of the windows had been completey smashed in the back, her car broken into, shards of glass littering the ground.  Nick stayed back to call the police and insurance company.  Melissa and I got into my car, and plan B was quickly formulated.  I was thrust into position as 2nd shooter and given the responsibility of photographing the groom, groomsmen and swordsmen on my own, and I was excited to step up to the task.

Jared and his groomsmen looked handsome in their dress whites and dress blues.  Let me tell you, there is just something about a man in uniform that makes me swoon!  They were all absolute sweethearts and I loved getting to spend time with them.

And when I later met Katie, I could see why Jared was so in love with her.  She is a doll, just sweet as can be.  And they were so in love, and so happy - it couldn't have been more evident than in the way they embraced and looked into each other's eyes.

Thank you, Katie and Jared, for allowing me to share in your special day.  And, thank you, Melissa, for the opportunity to 2nd shoot alongside you.  I love working with you and can see why your clients love you!

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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Marketing Photoshoot

Recently, Chris and I had fun being the talent for an M/I Homes marketing photoshoot.  I loved seeing a different side of the industry and watching other professionals at work.  The controlled environment was completely opposite of working with the weather, venue lighting, and location backdrops during weddings. 

Colin McGuire was an absolute sweetheart to work with.  Throughout our two shoots he was always calm, collected, genuine and fun.  He has an impeccable eye for detail, and after a few test photos he and the stylists would move plates, glasses, vases, and other props here and there, some by only a couple of inches or a 10 degree rotation.  Chris and I watched as Wayne Hayward adjusted one side of the refrigerator door by half a centimeter to make it flush with the other door.  Details, details, details.  This is what makes them so great at what they do.

Wayne is an amazing photographer in his own right.  He ran a studio in Johannesburg, South Africa for 20 years before moving to the DC area.  While he does his own commercial work, he was on hand to assist Colin for this shoot. 

Here is Chris, working from his phone as we wait for the kitchen scene to be set up.

Fresh flowers for the shoot:

Arranging items for the kitchen scene.  Chris said he would like to see this one enacted more often in our home.  Except, with real food.  There was real wine on the countertop, though, and I had no problem understanding how to use that prop! 

Chris in position for his role - complete with sports section and a glass of wine - while he watches me stir a wooden spoon in an empty wok.

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Sneak Peek: Nairi's Bridal Shower

Just wanted to give you all a sneak peek of this beautiful Alice in Wonderland themed bridal shower.  I can't wait to blog the rest!  Happy Tuesday!

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Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day

I just realized it's been over a month since I last blogged, but I had to post today to wish my dad a Happy Father's Day.  He joined the Army straight out of high school as a means to a better life, then met my mother while stationed in Korea.  I was born in Texas and we moved to Rochester, NY when I was two.  I felt uprooted when my dad moved us all to Germany in the middle of my first year of school, and was upset when he extended his stay for two more years, because I wanted to come back to the United States to see my friends and relatives again. 

When we returned to the U.S. (after I finished 4th grade), I had no idea what a 7-11 was, and I discovered MTV and music videos for the first time.  I felt like I had missed out on so much, and I was too young to appreciate that I had been cultered well beyond most kids my age.  My father knew that being stationed in Germany was the greatest opportunity for us to travel to different nearby countries and experience a wide range of cultures and history. 

Thanks to my father, by the age of 10 I had been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris, toured the Sistine Chapel, seen the Colosseum in Rome, watched glass blowing by master artists in Murano and walked the canals of Venice, walked along the outer galleries of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, visited East Berlin when the wall was still standing, toured endless castles in Germany, enjoyed amazing displays of tulips and other flowers in Holland, traveled through the Swiss Alps, and swam in the Mediterranean Sea.  The list goes on.

My parents scraped together whatever they had in order to afford us these opportunities, and I'm so thankful for my dad in planning each and every trip.  Throughout my life he has worked hard to provide for our family, and he has always supported me in my choices and believed in me to do the right thing.  He loves his family in his own quiet way, and I am proud to call him my father.  I love you, Dad!

And because a post is better with a photo....  Chris and I took a 2 week European vacation in 2008, and I was finally able to see and appreciate the Eiffel Tower as an adult.  This is one of my favorite images from our trip:

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