Friday, January 27, 2012

Baby LeighAnn | Brighton Colorado newborn photography

Overfilled with joy.

When I saw a new mother use those words on Facebook to describe how she was feeling after giving birth, I knew exactly what she was talking about. The incredible rush of love, the wonder of holding your first born child, the gratitude for the safe delivery and health of your baby – all of it, together, filling you with joy until you don’t think you can hold any more.

When I arrived at this same mother’s home to photograph her baby girl at 10 days old, I could certainly see why this little one was bringing her so much joy. Perfectly squishy and perfectly content, LeighAnn is already a happy baby and was a treat to photograph.



Congratulations, J., on your beautfiul new bundle of joy.
Sunday, January 22, 2012

Project 12: {Resolution}

I know I said I wasn't going to do Project 52 again in 2012.  I'm glad I made that decision.  But I recently came across a Project 12 and I think I'm going to do it!  It's being hosted by MCP Actions .  At the beginning of each month, a new theme will be posted on their blog, and you have the whole month to come up with ideas and post your photograph (or multiple photographs) that fit the theme.

January's theme is, appropriately, "Resolution."  I wrote in a previous blog post about how I wanted to move forward in 2012 (you can read it here.)  Part of moving forward is clearing the clutter out of the way so you can focus on the things you want to accomplish.  I mean this mentally and physically, though the last weeks have seen an enthusiastic push towards clearing the physical clutter.  For the first time in awhile, I actually want to hide spend time upstairs in the small open area that I claimed for myself.  Whatever your feelings towards actually doing the clearing out, you have to admit that it feels good when it's done.  Getting one room done has given me the motivation to go through other rooms in the house.


Anyone else resolved to make a change this year?





Friday, January 20, 2012

Cake smash | Brighton Colorado children's photography

Is there any better way to celebrate a birthday, than with cake?  Unless maybe that cake was lovingly made by your own grandmother.  Or unless you’re surrounded by people who adore you, to share that cake with.  Confronted with her first birthday cake, Heidi was tentative at first, then dug in with ladylike delight, and then finally decided it would be better to bring pieces of smashed cake to every around her. 



I think a cake smash session is a great way to capture the excitement of turning one. (I wish I'd known of this concept when my own kiddos turned one!) Heidi is one of the sweetest babies I know and was a delight to photograph - in between laughing and sharing cake with her, of course. I can't wait to see what the next year brings for this little one!

 
Sunday, January 15, 2012

Good move | Golden Colorado family photography

Photographing a family is a whole different ball game than photographing a toddler or newborn, which I found out for myself recently when I photographed this beautiful family.  Colleen moved to Colorado from Wisconsin ten years ago, this month, to start a new life adventure.  She had one family member here, and no other reason to be here than to see what might unfold.  What she ended up finding was a man she would marry and make a home with, and together, bring a handsome little boy into the world.


I'd say that the move to Colorado was a good one, wouldn't you?

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Taking baby steps to confidence


I am a photographer.

There, I said it. Or at least, I wrote it. Which is much easier to do than saying it out loud.

I feel like an imposter.

I didn't grow up with a camera in hand. I grew up in a household where academics were strictly enforced, and I excelled at it. The closest I came to creative endeavors was writing a few short stories in middle school. I studied hard and read voraciously, naive and without a clue about art, creativity, or expression. It stayed this way through college, where I majored in molecular and cellular biology.

Shortly before I got married, I met an artist. A beautiful girl full of energy and creative talent, with sophisticated tastes and intelligent insight. You know, the "cool" girl. And she's a photographer. Then someone else I met around the same time, found herself unemployed and did something unimaginable and awe-inspiring to me at the time - she started her own business, became a wedding photographer.

Through these two girls, I found myself introduced to, and fascinated with, photography. And why not – it’s the perfect combination of technical and creative. I bought a DSLR, and read books, and found online tutorials, and threw myself into learning. Then, I had a baby. The camera stayed in automatic mode and became nothing more than a heavy point and shoot. But I had discovered an artistic streak in me, and found other enjoyable ways to be creative. I’ve dabbled in many types of hobbies or crafts, but always, I thought longingly of getting back to learning my camera.

After too long, I finally made the commitment to myself to get back to those books, get out there with my camera, and start learning. Now I'm here. Trying to say the words, "I am a photographer" without simultaneously waiting for someone to roll their eyes or snicker.

I'm not a professional. I don't have an art degree. I haven't had a camera in my hand since I was little. I know less than half of what there is to learn about photography. But I have the desire to learn, the passion, the itch to get out there with my camera and capture. Surely, that's gotta count for something.

So I practice saying it to myself: I am a photographer.

One day, I hope to have the confidence to share with those two women, the creative avenues they unknowingly led me down.

Baby steps, though.

I am a photographer.
Saturday, January 7, 2012

Being reasonable about spiral notebooks

In the spirit of the new year, of clearing out physical and emotional clutter and moving forward, I filled up two garbage bags this week, with things from around the house that I've been needlessly hanging onto.


It just pains me to throw all of that educational material and hard work away :[
For example, my teacher told us to clean out our binders and throw everything in the recycle bin, and I almost yelped in protest.
Thanks to themarilives!
SOURCE


It’s been eleven just a few years since I graduated from college, but I’ve hung onto most of my books, class notes, and papers from those years. “Just in case.” Just in case of a vague, remote chance I might need the materials as reference some day. Just in case I needed to review what I learned (and forgot) for a new job opportunity or career direction. Also, there’s some difficulty in throwing away something that I spent so many hours (and tuition dollars) on. And, as if I needed to give myself one more excuse, flipping through the notes sometimes makes me laugh. You can tell which days I was bored by the doodles, or which days I was getting along with my then-boyfriend by the love notes tucked into the margins.


Are you nodding in sympathy?  Some of you, at least, know what I'm talking about.   So you can picture me, sitting on the floor surrounded by these spiral notebooks, having an internal debate about getting rid of them.  The ready-to-move-forward side of my brain won this debate and it all went into the trash.  The truth is, I'm never going to use these materials.   If I pursue a new job opportunity or career option, this isn't the path I'll be taking.  I've changed so much since college, and my interests and passions no longer lay in genetic code or biochemical pathways.  College was a great experience, but I've changed so much since then and I'm never going back to being that person - why hang onto these shreds of who I was "just in case"?  The memories of the experience are stored in my head, in my photographs, not in stacks of pages of notes and diagrams which I don't utilize in my life, not even in my current job.

The stars and highlighting indicate this is important information - but i have no idea anymore what the significance of this is nor am I particularly interested in finding out.

It seems like a small thing, but it felt good to get rid of those notebooks.  It's time to accept that the things I want for my life moving forward from this point, are much different from the things that I wanted for my life when I was 20 years old - and that's okay.  It doesn't negate any of my experiences up to this point.

So I'm curious - what's one thing in your house that you've been hanging onto for purely emotional reasons, that you could probably just get rid of?  Why don't you go on ahead and toss it?  Come back and let me know about it if you do!
Monday, January 2, 2012

Project 52 - Week 52 {the end}

You didn't think I would forget to post a picture for the last week of 2011, did you?  After managing to make it through 51 other weeks?  No way :)



The last candle lighting of the year.  As the year came to an end, so was the candle blown out.

Hmmmm, that actually sounds a bit depressing, doesn't it?  It's not meant to be.  It's just a hope that we can leave the past behind.  That we can start the new year in a state of mind that's... well, new.

Do you make resolutions?  I'm not making any, though I have a vague determination to get better organized, eat healthy, extend my creativity, find focus.  There are more specific items of action on my 101 in 1001 list that I'd like to cross off in the coming year, and even more projects and ideas floating around in my head.

Overall, I just want to move forward.  I've had a plan of action for my life since high school.  It's changed over the years (kids weren't a part of the plan for a long time!), but there's always been a plan, a milestone to move towards.  I feel like I've lost that.  Like I'm pedaling a bike furiously every day, only to realize at the end of the year that the bike was stationary the whole time, and I'm in the same place that I was when I started.  I want to get everything ordered and organized in my life so that I can move towards something new - whether that's new experiences, new goals, or new adventures.

So here's to lighting a new candle... getting on a different bike... whatever over-sentimental or cheesy symbolism works here.  Seriously, though - Happy New Year, and may it bring many blessings and adventures to all of you!
 

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