Summertime Rain

Standing in the parking lot under a light rain, Jen and I conferred. The kids were in the car, anxious to get out. Her husband was of the mind that she got to make the decision on this one. Great light, a long distance we all traveled, and tons of rain. We decided to reschedule.

As we found a date that worked for all of us, the sun began to break through parted clouds. The kids were promised that they could get out of the car to feed the ducks anyway. We decided to go for it. And am I glad we did. Photography isn’t a convenient thing. The best shots are just during or after inclement weather, at the crack of dawn, or while everyone else is eating dinner. But when you catch that light….nothing could be better.

She’s Here!

Many congratulations to my new clients! I’ll be working with them all year, tracking the development of their family through photographs.  Below, a few favs from their infant and maternity sessions.

Chris and Beth – Sodus Point Lighthouse | Sodus Point, NY Wedding Photographer

I love going home. To my first home, where I come from. What makes it even better is to share in the celebration and love of some great friends. My friends Jessica and Brian were married a few years ago (blog post here) in Canandaguia, New York, on the same lake I was married on in 2001. A few weeks ago, I traveled back, this time to Sodus Point, to photograph the wedding of their friends. These beautiful kids, Chris and Beth, are also the siblings of two friends of mine from way back (elementary school?!). It’s amazing to see the union of not only two people, but their families as well.

The Groom
The first look
Dad and daughter, glancing at their family as they walk down the aisle. 
 The gorgeous venue was the historic lighthouse in Sodus Point.
 The small, sweet bridal party. Drew (on left) is the grooms’ older brother. I think I met him in 1983. What a great day it was, to catch up with old friends and witness such happiness.
 This is the second time I’ve seen homemade jam as a favor. I LOVE this idea. 
So personal, sweet and useful. 
 I photographed Brian (on right) and Jessica’s wedding back in 2010. Since then, they’ve added a sweet addition to their family. Presley is looking like a tough little cookie, hanging out with the boys.
 The first dance.
 The gorgeous reception site.
 Lots of pies for dessert!
 Father and daughter
 Mother and son
 Chris and Beth, thank you so much for including me in your day. It was spectacular, perfect, gorgeous, and so you. Cheers to a lifetime of happiness! 

Smartphone vs. SLR

I was just working with a client, finishing up a shoot of her 8 month old, the last of her six children. She said to me “I had no idea you couldn’t print photos taken on a Smartphone!” She had been documenting her baby’s first year with her phone camera, with an assumption that you can print the images to be high quality, frameable pieces. She was so devastated to realize that upon printing, she had almost nothing useable from the previous year. Have you ever done this?

When I got my first phone, I did the same thing. Taking photos of camping trips, friends hanging out, casual experiences, it seemed as if the quality was passable. Once on my computer, however, it was obvious that most were out of focus (due to camera movement, that little thing is hard to keep steady, especially when handed off to a stranger to take the picture!). The low light resolution is terrible, and dynamic range limited.

The quality difference came into clear focus once again (pun intended) yesterday, when my husband and I were at the White House for a fourth of July celebration.

Here’s an image taken with the iPhone:

And the same image taken two minutes later (with hat and sunglasses on), in the same location, with my SLR. Not a great image (it could use a little fill flash, yes?), but still leagues above the iPhone image.

The best camera is the one you’re willing to carry with you, and sometimes, that’s the one in your pocket. But if you’re willing to invest a little into a good point and shoot, or a consumer-level single lens reflex (SLR), you’ll be able to build a collection of photos of your family and friends that can last a lifetime.

If you have questions on camera selection and use, sign up for my summer photo classes (only 4 spots remain):

New Installation

For those of you who have been to my shared studio space in Mt. Pleasant, DC, you know that I do wall art for Past Tense Yoga Studio. Every year, I create a new exhibit, and we auction off the previous year’s work and donate the proceeds.

This year, I wanted to create something a bit more abstract, to reflect my personal style and love of color, as well as to create images that you can really meditate on while practicing yoga. The first year I did images of the west coast from my travels, the second year, I created a water theme from images from around the world, and this last year were simple flowers and shapes from the garden.

Here’s my favorite image from the incoming collection. The exhibit will be up next Friday, the auction from the outgoing collection is going on now. Stop by Past Tense Yoga Studio (3253 Mt. Pleasant St. NW, WDC 20010) to put in your bid if any caught your eye.

These pieces are always for sale, at any time of the year, as well. Just give a shout for more information.

Kaarin and Navin – Morrison House | Alexandria, VA Wedding Photographer

Kaarin is a former yoga student of mine. Navin is her best friend. Kaarin and I began working together on a project called Jackie and Marilyn. She runs a company called Closet Caucus, which helps build women up on the inside, by helping them shine on the outside. She’d do her thing, and I’d do mine, giving excited women a makeover and a photo shoot – a pretty fun little project of ours. 
Kaarin and Navin are now writing their love story. They were best friends first, confidants, who fell in love. In this book, to which they tied their wedding rings before their ceremony, they filled the pages with memories and momentos of their days together so far. 
 Irina was the makeup artist who joined us for the Jackie and Marilyn experiment. The ol’ crew, back together again…making Kaarin even more glowing and gorgeous than she is every day.
 A moment for Kaarin and her mom.
 The first look.
These four candles were placed at the couples feet while they were married. They hand wrote their favorite poems and writings, and wrapped them around the candles. 
 Taking the “seven steps” as a new couple, led by Navin’s dad.
 Kaarin’s father is a military chaplain, and married the couple.
 Kaarin’s vintage dress is from the 1950’s. A family friend hand tea-dyed the crinoline underneath the skirt, to match the six-decade old fabric.
Below, the entirety of the guest list, in post ceremony hugs. Just Kaarin’s and Navin’s immediate family. How different. How peaceful. How refreshing.
 The families come together.
After the Morrison House ceremony, we moved into a small room for brunch. The families share stories about their kids, and we all shared amazing food.
On our way to finish the ceremony!
So, the ceremony was full of richness, tradition and family intimacy. But it stopped short of officially declaring the couple as man and wife. It was really important to Kaarin and Navin that they show support for the District of Columbia’s equal rights marriage amendment. But their chosen venue was in Virginia….so how to resolve the conflict? A quick metro ride, of course!
Waitin’ for the metro.
 Once we crossed over the border into DC….they become man and wife!
We had a few uninvited guests on the metro (or were we not invited to their metro ride?) … so shocking one of them that they sent it off to the Huffington Post, covered here:
Kaarin and Navin, I couldn’t be more honored to be a part of your sweet ceremony. You two are an amazing couple, great friends, and blessed to have found each other. Cheers to your great future!