Monday, April 2, 2012

I Have a New Blog!

Greetings beloved readers!

I have switched my blog over to Word Press because I have so much more control and options and most importantly to me I am able to make it SO much prettier!

So here is the link to my new blog

and here is the link to the first new post

It would mean the world to me if y'all could follow me over there {pretty, pretty, please}.

Also, I 'll be posting details about my headshot mini-session there soon and the spring mini-sessions after that.


Monday, March 26, 2012

March Lightplay {Utah Photography}

One of my goals this year is to play more with lighting and so I gave myself the assignment of doing a different lighting project every month. I am reading a really fun book The Hot Shoe Diaries by Joe McNally and sometimes I challenge myself to recreate something he has done but with my own twist, 'cause y'know, nobody likes a copycat. :)

The above photo was inspired by one of Joe's where he is shooting through a rainy window and while I want to play with that idea too as I was reading the section an image through blinds immediately popped into my head. Luckily I have kids who are always willing to help (or willing to be bribed). This is my daughter and we are just in my front room and I have a Nikon SB800 flash outside on a lightstand in Remote mode and I am using my on Camera flash in Commander mode to trigger it through my open front door. We took a bunch but I especially loved the repeating stripe elements in this one as well as the shadow on the wall and the downturned face that I feel makes your eyes travel through the photo instead of getting stuck on the subject's eyes.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Two Temples and a Holiday {Utah Photography}

I've been having a hard time making it to photograph my monthly temples before it get's black dark the last couple of months. I missed Oquirrh Mountain by about fifteen minutes but oh well, I will prevail! I tried to make interesting images anyway which is why I went more impressionistic (probably not a word) with the above image of the Mt. Timpanogos Temple. I didn't realize I'd done matching panorama shots for both temples until I uploaded these to blogger. Sidenote: both temples also have matching chandeliers {my favorite that I've seen}.

I don't know why I like the above shot so much, I just do. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I am standing right next to the fountain...I really like fountains.

I really like the Oquirrh Mountain Temple. It's cozy, yet splendid.

I finished a wonderful weekend with a fabulous St. Patrick's day. My DH {darling hubby} knows how much I love St. Patty's so he took me to the Celtic Celebration at Peery's Egyptian Theatre. He also knows how much I love that theatre and bagpipes, which were part of the celebration. I am so spoiled! :)

Monday, March 12, 2012

Photowalk 2012 {Utah Photography}

A few weeks ago I went to the annual Photowalk event where some wonderful volunteers put together different lighting stations complete with models and you could practice these different set-ups to your heart's content. I have been invited in years past but this is the first year that I've gone (it's a rather long drive for me). When I got there the event was already in full swing and I made a note to self to arrive at the start next year instead of awhile into the event because it was PACKED!! There were about ten different stations and for the set-ups involving strobes you had to wait your turn to use the triggers so I knew I wasn't going to be able to hit every set-up. I wandered for a bit to get my bearings then headed for the continuous light set-up showcasing a gorgeous gent and a piano. Yeah, I would, I know.
I would go to a station and think to myself "What do I want to say here" and go from there. In this case I wanted a much more moody look. I know, I love drama, mood, theatre. It's just who I am. I felt there was a lot more light here than I wanted so I turned him around on the bench for more of a split light effect. I saw this set-up as very dark with maybe a beam of light from a snooted-off camera speedlight edging across his face, but that's just my interpretation.

Next I heard an announcement that there was a set-up next door with really dramatic theatrical make-up so yes, I made a beeline for that and though the wait was long it was definitely worth it. This set up was my favorite.

It was fun to find out that the model on the left is one that I have worked with before and really like. I didn't recognize her at first with all the make-up. Shocker, right?

When I walked back in to the main room there was no one at this station and I was tired of lines so I jumped in. It was also natural light so several photographers could shoot at a time so that was nice. It was challenging to get the shots that you wanted that day when you knew people were waiting behind you and you needed to be quick. You really had to visualize your concept while in line and work fast. I shoot with a tripod and that was tricky and slowed me down but I do NOT care what people think. I am very picky and I want my images tack sharp, especially the eyes. I tried to not use my tripod sometimes, like on the image above which was a grab test shot that of course ended up being my favorite and it's too soft which makes me mad at myself. The background on the above shot was a sort of teal blue which is perfectly fine but I personally loathe as a color so I knew I would be going to black and white which for some reason reminded me of a CK underwear ad so that's sort of the direction I went.

Next up I HAD to do the rock-star style set up. Too much fun! Again I went a lot darker that the settings that they had posted and then even darker in post production. It's just what I saw in my head.

*laughing* The above image was taken by Jeremy Nicoll, a fellow shooter, while another photographer was up. I was a "groupie" for several different people. It was fun being a prop and I'm always up for stuff like that. :)

I loved the tribal make-up and her outfit and props were killer. Once again I wanted to go a LOT darker so that's what I did. I guess it was just the mood that I was in that day. Maybe I just always see thing in terms of being on stage with a single spotlight. I don't know, I'm going to have to give it some thought.

Last, but most definitely not least, I had to hit the high key all white background set-up by David Terry if only just to say hi to him. There was only about five minutes of the event left so I barely made it and had to be super quick but it was fun and hey, this one isn't dark so I feel better. :)

All in all it was a wonderful, pure chocolate, sort of a day. I got to stretch the creative muscles and see a lot of my fellow photographers which is always nice. I also got to meet a lot of "friends" in person and that was fun. Will I go next year? ABSOLUTELY!!!

Monday, March 5, 2012

1,000 Stories {One Million Words}

This album is my 1,000 day photo project. I loved doing my 365 day photo project entitled My World. It was the best thing I have ever done for myself artistically and one of the best personally. I expected to be relieved when I completed it but I wasn't, I missed it terribly. I decided to start another daily project but I wanted it to have a different theme. I have always loved stories. I feel like I always have one or more going on in my head at all times and when I photograph I am always trying to tell the story of what I see and how I feel in my images so I decided to make that the theme of my new project. If a picture is worth a thousand words then I hope to record a million of them.

I decided to start on Leap Day because it's just a fun day and here is my favorite story so far.

I took this last night, it was my Grandfather's 86th birthday and my extended family was together to celebrate it along with St. Patrick's (we're Irish). My Grandparent's were enjoying a moment (I won't say quiet because my family is NOT) and I bolted for my camera.

Here is the link to my Boutique site where I will be posting all of my stories.

p.s. The file names are dates and times the images were taken. I like to remember both. Although my objective was to not explain my My World photographs I will be telling the stories behind these images more often.

Monday, February 27, 2012

The Fielding Family {Utah Family Photography}

"In the midst of winter I found within myself an invincible summer."

Isn't that a beautiful quote?

This is the Fielding Family and that quote was the theme that we built their session around. I can't express enough how much I love it when people put thought and meaning into their images. I think it makes for a much stronger emotional connection and brings more joy to the heart when you see your beautiful wall art in your home.

p.s. You have to notice that their color theme is Americana...get it?...summer??

This is one of my favorite locations, especially for this time of year and it has personal meaning for this family which makes it even nicer. The image above is my favorite from the session. This adorable little girl was a bit reticent about having her photo taken and she had a pretty tight grip on her special doll. In this image her mom has just tossed the doll into a snowbank in hopes of getting a shot sans doll. I'm sort of hanging over the edge of a bridge at this point and I had a clear view of the little darling's face and just held down the shutter. Priceless!

Utah State HEY! Aggies all the way!!

Just another reason I love this family! Most of them actually came straight from a USU game to our photo session. Sadly they told me that the Aggies hadn't played well but we just won't speak of that. ;)

By the end she was happier and can I just say that this little girl is loved and adored!

We had such a wonderful day. Thank you so SO much Fielding Family!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Miss Jillian in the Snow {Utah Photography}

I love concept shoots and I love pictures in the snow! Just fyi, a concept shoot for me is where I have a picture rolling around in my head and am finally able to put the pieces together and shoot it. It’s kinda like saying “Shave and a haircut….” and then when you do the shoot and see the final photos you get to sing at the top of your lungs “TWOOOOOOOOOO BIIIIIIIIITS!!!!!”

It feels good.

This beautiful girl is the lovely and talented Miss Jillian Tirado. She doesn’t have her last name on her fbook profile for me to double check so I sincerely hope that I am spelling it correctly. We first talked about this shoot ages upon ages ago. Originally we were going to do it in the fall. I had some idea of it being the last fairy of fall about to go to sleep before the winter but now that I see everything put together it works much better as a snow fairy, don’t you think? We wanted to start a little earlier in the day to get day and night looks but due to a small driving mishap we got started a little late. Jillian valiantly offered to postpone but she had done so much work on hair and makeup (did you notice the forehead jewels) that there was no way I wasn’t going to see what I could get. I am actually delighted with how they turned out.

I forgot to mention that this shoot doubled as my lightplay monthly photo project for February. I was playing with off camera flash and the sky. The sky part is hard to explain but see the lovely blue in the shot below? That's what I was trying to get on that shot. Just a little backstory: at this point in the evening it is so dark that I can't see Jillian's face through my camera viewfinder.

Luckily Jillian has agreed to play again so you will see more of her to come. I love being surrounded by artistic, creative people. Thank you Jillian!

p.s. Here is the link to the rest.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Mini-Session in the Snow! {Utah Family Photography}

After many many requests I have finally decided to do a mini-session special. My plan/goal is to do four a year. I am tentatively planning to do snow, headshots, spring and fall sessions. So starting with snow I am offering a half hour session in Ogden Valley at your choice of three locations starting at 5 p.m. {promptly 'cause the sun it does go down}. There is no session fee just a required $100.00 minimum purchase {tax is not included}. I offered a few pricing samples on the session photo but of course I have more sizes etc. available. Also the Christmas Card design and $500 all inclusive package are special prices connected to this offer.

Give me a call/email if you are interested and please pass this along to anyone who may enjoy it.

Thanks so much!!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Sixteen Years and Counting! {Utah Fine Art Photography}

Now that Sundance is over I need to catch up a bit. My husband and I celebrated our sixteenth wedding anniversary in January and as the actual date fell during Sundance we went on a mini trip the week before. I have a goal to photograph a temple every month, preferably one I haven't photographed before. So although I know it isn't exactly an exotic locale hubby was kind enough to go with me to Idaho for our anniversary so that I could photograph the Idaho Falls and Rexburg temples.

We're sort of Hotel snobs and especially like fun themed Inns for our anniversary. this year we stayed in a Paris themed room. Paris is one of our favorite cities in the World and it represents travel to me, especially the Eiffel tower. Hubby picked it and made all the arrangements, he's the cutest!

We visited the Idaho Falls Temple first. It is in such a unique location, right on the river. I like the reflection that it cast in the ice at night.

It was so cold I wanted to cry. Ironically the next week it was super warm and rained a ton with lots of subsequent flooding. January is nuts!

We were going to take pictures of the Rexburg temple after we went through a session but when we got there the clouds were so cool that I decided to take pictures then and there. I was glad because when we got out the clouds were boring. It's a lesson that I have to keep learning over and over again. If you see a scene you like and it's at all possible, take a picture then and there. Don't wait!

I have these photos and more on my boutique site. Here are the links

Idaho Falls


Monday, January 30, 2012

Sundance 2012 Recap. Yes, I did have fun. Thank you for asking. {Utah Photography}

Fair Warning: This post will probably end up long and's just that kind of a mood today.

Whenever people hear that I was at Sundance their first question is always "Did you have fun?" I always hesitate for a second because usually they want to know about the parties and celebrities and to be honest I'm not into any of that. Also, this year I didn't have time to play. Oh, I meant to, but I worked 44 hours at the festival on top of my "real" life and the few days I set aside to "play" the weather hit and I may be a big baby but I am NOT a fan of putting my life at risk driving in the snow if I don't have to.

As far as celebrities, I like to meet and talk to the directors and production teams of the various films because that is where my heart lies and my idea of fun is honestly to work myself into the ground doing the best possible job that I can do. Plus, I love adventures and crazy things that happen to add to my treasury of memories and stories. Did I have fun?

{new years resolution to not swear anymore, not even for creative emphasis}

Tuesday, January 24, 2012 brought on a mad dash between two different venues. I was to cover the VIP Reception at New Frontier art gallery from 6-8 only to find out when I got there that the reception was from 8-10. I took photographs of the exhibits by themselves, ran over to the Tower Theatre to cover it, then back to New Frontier. It was a zoo and so crazy fun. I was very much entertained by the goings on.

It's probably the photographer in me that is always fascinated by pictures made out of pictures.

This was a really cool Bear exhibit that I wished my Mom was there to see. She would have loved it. Ahhhh the days of going with my Mom to art exhibits...but that's another story.

I was supposed to get shots of people interacting with the exhibits, the difficulty lying in the fact that the place was crazy packed and very dimly lit except for the bright screens of the exhibits. I prevailed!!!...and probably wacked 3/4ths of the people there with my tripod. Really sorry everyone.

I'm at an art exhibit so of course I'm going to get into one of my "artistic" moods. Here's playing with 3D glasses in front of the 3D screen. Another photographer who was there was watching me and asked if that worked. I told him I was just playing and he told me it was a good idea...made me feel good. I love the shot below. It took me quite awhile to get just what I wanted but I love when I see a picture in my head and then am able to make it happen.

Another of my "artistic" photos. I was up in the VIP lounge and fascinated by the world within a world up there and thought the reflections illustrated that it was fun.

I've never been to the Tower Theatre before but I have to go again soon, the atmosphere is delightful. I love venues with a quaint, quirky, hole-in-the-way feel. I mean that in an absolutely good way.

Most of the volunteers in the Salt Lake venues are the same year after year. They know each other, know what they are doing and have a blast doing it. You guys were awesome, thank you for all of your help!

See? Having a blast! I needed shots of wait-list ticket sales but was afraid I would miss it so they were helping out by staging the shot but then they started's my favorite.

This lovely lady was the first there for the next showing, the previous film hadn't even let out yet. Die hard festival fan!

The Tower is the only venue I've been too where you aren't inside or in a tent. It was COLD but everyone was so happy and nice. It was a joy just to be around so many positive people. We talked, and laughed, and had a blast!

My brother Ben has been in NYC for the past six months doing an internship at Entertainment Weekly. He actually got back the day after I took this. Most of his writing appeared in EW's online site but here is an article of his. It was in the issue that was all over the Sundance Film Festival because EW is a Sundance sponsor. I had to take a picture. People were probably thinking I was crazy but I'm used to that so it's all good.

I have been interested in getting into film, film photography, and DP work for a long time. I've worked on a few independent films and loved every minute of it but kind of shut the door on that dream because I just couldn't see how it would work with my life being the way it is right now, family etc. But because of some opportunities that have come my way through Sundance it looks very possible that the door to that dream is being re-opened for me. I don't want to get too excited but to be honest I really am.

It's interesting that sometimes when things in one area of your life are going really well things hit you in other areas. Maybe equalizing karma, a test to see how badly you want things, or a chance for you to really appreciate the good through contrast. Perhaps a test of faith. Anyway, Wednesday January 25th was a hard day. I had to say good-bye to a difficult situation that has been going on for over three years. It sounds like a good thing I know, but it's heart-breaking to finally give up on something that you once believed in so strongly. My grandmother also had a heart-attack but she is home now from the hospital and doing well.

That night I was able to go to Peery's Egyptian theatre which is my very most favoritest theatre in the whole world. The volunteers were so nice and patient with me, I was bouncing up and down I was so happy to be there. I used to go to the Egyptian theatre when I was a child before they remodeled it. I remember loving all the Egyptian decor especially the twinkling stars on the "sky" and being so fascinated that it would be day outside after seeing a matinee inside under the stars.

Peery's Egyptian Theatre is Sundance's second largest theatre after the Eccles in Park City, a fact which I was not aware of until that night. It holds eight hundred people. The lines were long but everyone made it in.

Stampede! {Tremors reference}

I am so in love with this theatre!

AND they have an organist. He's spectacular and he plays a mean showtune!

Thanks Egyptian Theatre Volunteers you made a hard day wonderful!

Saturday the 28th marked my third attempt to make it to the actual Sundance resort. Third time proved to be a charm, it is beautiful up there. I'm so grateful to have gone to all of these places I've never been before.

I have so much fun taking atmosphere shots. The ski slopes are just a hop, skip, and a jump from the screening room.

Isn't this a beautiful location?

People were so fun and great about me taking their picture!

This is a Q&A session held after a special private screening event. The film was about dyslexia and listening to the audience response I was sad to have missed it. It brought many audience members to tears as they told about their own experiences with dyslexia and thanked the director for making the film. Stories to change the's what film is about.

The wonderful volunteers of the Sundance resort. I couldn't do my job without them and special thanks for making sure I knew what was going on and for showing me the best shots!

I liked how her upturned face echoed the faces of the women in the two signs around her.

This audience member and her friend were the absolute cutest. I loved being around people who were so positive and excited to be there.

Lol, for once I'm not making someone take a picture of me and my friends/family. This shot makes me smile, especially hearing them say "One more, one more" and one of the guys saying "that's what email is for". Hahaha, story of my life.

Sundance projection room and projectionist and check it out...

Old School!! This is the actual film on 35mm about to be threaded into the projector. Fantastic!

Patiently waiting in line and...


Last but not least I headed to the airport where for the very first time Sundance has an info booth, two actually. When I got there I found that there was no one there. Apparently it was too late in the festival. I stood there perplexed and these two travelers started talking to me and then volunteered to be in the shot. So fun guy on the left is wearing my credentials and jacket and talking to his friend (also a fun guy). How nice was that? My whole festival experience was person after person doing kind deeds. I love seeing such proof that people in general are wonderful and good and kind. These two are from Florida and Iowa and ironically were headed up to Powder Mountain, my neck of the woods. Thank you kind friends!

I spent the rest of the day editing and uploading and yesterday in bed recovering. I'm totally exhausted and burnt out but in a very good way. It's been an amazing ten days full of adventures, opportunities, possibilities, heartache, laughter, tears, and hope. I wouldn't trade it for the world.

Did I have fun?

I most certainly did!