Posts Tagged ‘photography’

This session just after Thanksgiving was so special and fun!! The client’s father is a photographer and they asked me to shoot film which was so incredibly fulfilling. I love the slowed down process of photographing with my big film camera, up on a tripod. Even though it is spontaneous, I have to think about the shots and really make sure the light works, so  I am not able to experiment as much as digital, but its worth it to me ! I love the way film looks and for a day in the life sessions, it just captures a memory in a different way. Digital is great too-it offers other perks- more experiments, less price, and a lot more mobile! But sometimes I appreciate the slowing down and thought process of shooting film, not to mention the anticipation of having to wait for the proofs!

I loved that they booked the session for the morning. I am now offering shorter versions of A day in the life- so much can be caught in 3 hours of a morning! I arrived in the dark, before the kids were awake- which was perfect to capture these boys amazing bed heads- their hair was fabulous!!

I was there quietly trying to record the quiet moments as they were waking up and just chilling out, to making pancakes, (one photo of the oldest literally inhaling the yummy smell of the pancake pressing it still warm to his face:)), to lego time and jumping on the bed- its a short time, but mornings on a weekend can be filled with amazing memories and I was so happy to help capture them. When the kids are are 40 years old, they will have these photographs, not lost on a computer somewhere, they will hold them in their hands, or look at them on the wall and remember their time being kids and remember their parents and the time they had as a family. It is an investment, but something that preserves your family history for years to come. Most people invest in documenting their wedding, but don’t think about how special a day or few hours in the life of their family can be.

One note to mention! Parents are often not so excited about the thought of being caught on camera in general- especially before coffee:) but its so important for your kids to have photographs with you in them. Notice that the parents are in these, they are interacting but not the focus. Its a great way to be there so that you have memories, don’t jump out of the photos, get in there for your kids!! I always also take full family photos while I am there- after everyone is warmed up- usually outdoors on the front porch, or at a favorite park, they are candid, but also a way to get all of the family in the same photograph for a memory.




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I am exited to participate in this fun event again this year! Rae my student will be photographing at the Friday night event, and I will be taking appointments on Sunday! here is a little sneak peek at the backdrop we made today(thank you to Jackson Pollock for the inspiration!!) Come see us!

Processed with VSCOcam

Processed with VSCOcam

Friday, Sept. 18, 8-11pm: BYOC Party A party celebrating photographers and their work Bring Your Own Camera or smartphones and CAM provides the photographers, the studios and the fun! Food and drinks Capital Club 16, Dessert lucettegrace, DJ Nick Neptune. Click for Tickets and more information

Saturday, Sept. 19, 11am: ArTIST’s TALK Coffee and conversation with special guests Curtis Mann and Jerome De Perlinghi

Sunday, Sept. 20, 11-6pm: Portrait Sittings (last sitting at 5pm) Traditional (or wildly untraditional) portrait sittings Family portraits, headshots, children’s portraits, pets, group shots, and more! Click for Tickets and more information

Click this link for tickets and more info! http://camraleigh.org/exposure-time-2015/

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This is a hard picture for me to look at—and I am not exactly sure why, even though this same feeling has been around for a very long time. Not the kids, of course, but looking at myself is hard.


I remember the circumstances for this photo. The kids had selected their outfits for the annual Christmas card photo shoot and Elizabeth Galecke and I had decided on a studio shoot instead of home or outdoors.  Online skating was a big thing that year and the kids were excited as usual to get their photos taken—although Grady– always was a bit more reluctant and resistant—needed gentle nudging and prodding from Jessie and Elizabeth’s monkey poop jokes to soften and relax.


Somehow, the idea came up for me to join in for a picture or two. We’d never done this before—the Christmas photos were always just the kids, or the kids and the dog, and didn’t include David and me.  I was very comfortable with this arrangement—it just seemed easier and reflected my priorities, I reasoned—“I don’t care about documenting us, I just want photos of the kids”.


I remember thinking how I didn’t really want to have my photo taken. My hair was pulled back, probably greasy.  I had a huge, boxy black sweatshirt on and loose gym shorts.  Up popped that knee-jerk, automatic reaction of thinking that I won’t look good in the photo—the one present for years, decades, as long as I can remember—a quiet anxiety and then dismissal every time a camera was aimed in my direction.


My parents took very few family photos growing up—we just weren’t that kind of family. A few occasional snapshots on trips back to Ohio or at my paternal grandparents’ home. A few Easter photos decked out in what now strike me as ridiculous hats, gloves and shiny shoes.  But no family milestones celebrated in pictures-no birthday, boyfriend or graduation photos.


So, there was no practicing this look or that look, this smile or that angle in the mirror as I grew up. My daughter taught me when she was in early high school  (and I was well into my forties) that your arms look “better”, aka skinnier, if you put your hand on your hip.  I had no idea.


My upbringing all seems so strange now. Jessie and Grady’s lives are so well documented from moments after birth, to graduations and marriages and every birthday, celebration, relationship, vacation and school year in between– in polaroids, VCR microcassette tapes, annual photo shoots with Elizabeth, discs from then-Eckerd’s Drug Store, and now of course digitally.


But then some impulse pulled me into the spirit of the moment with Elizabeth and the kids. I remember thinking “maybe it’ll come out good and I can surprise David with a photo for his office.”  David had tons of kid photos in his office but none of me.  An optimistic hope that perhaps this ONE photo of me will turn out well and feeling proud of myself for taking the risk.


Sorting through the proofs weeks later, I remember dismissing this photo out of hand, almost without conscious thought. Feeling that I looked big and blocky, my neck wide, my thighs exposed, my smile crooked–the photo wasn’t flattering at all.  Poor David—no smiling wife photo on his desk.


I have pretty vivid memories of bathing suit shopping with Jess–steeling myself for the dressing rooms in Belk’s, the ridiculous florescent lights. Taking my daughter with me so I’d be forced to have a positive attitude.  Knowing what I needed to do even though it remained hard.  Faking “liking my body”, even in a bathing suit, so my little girl would grow up liking hers.  Needing her to be with me to be my best self.


Oh and the tricks I played with myself! Looking only waist up in the mirror, not really looking at all in the shower. Not wearing jeans for a year or two—they were so “uncomfortable”.   Staying out of photos, functioning instead as the family photographer, before the kids and cell phone cameras took over.  Quickly shuffling through any photos that did include me, dismissing them without every really looking.  Focusing on parenting, on kids, over myself.  How normal and natural–the way of so many women.


Now, on the backside of 55 years old, the body concerns just seem so ridiculously silly. What a phenomenal waste of time and life energy.  What missed opportunities for loving myself.  Post-menopausal, I am free of new make-up products and fad work out routines.  Deeper still, facing significant health challenges, I take care of my body in a totally different way.  Appreciating its years of service to me and those I love, how strong and capable it’s been, how my children’s births are reflected in my body, how my wrinkles and scars, bumps and pains, reflect my life’s experience. My life—a wonderful life full of love and meaning.


And see in that photo how my kids love me. Both of them, leaning into me, resting on those broad thighs; my arms encircling us all.


Jessie, Tammy and Grady by Elizabeth Galecke-September 2000

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Holly Hobbie Electric Baking Oven Vintage 1980s Toy Blue

Before photography there was a serious love of cooking for me. I think it was probably insired by my grandmother- a chef by neccesity living on a farm with 12 kids to feed! She always had fresh bread baking in her wood burning stove and home-made donuts every time we visited. I loved it- and have craved it ever since. I had my first experience baking in my Holly Hobby oven– I begged my mom for more boxes of things to bake every time we went to the store. So now, when I have a Sunday off- my favorite thing to do is blast the radio- loud music is the only way to cook for me- I now have a real stove and oven, it is beautiful and VERY RED!  I listen to the Sunday Brunch with Kitty Kinnon-she is a serious foodie too- and the mix of her amazing music on Sundays and her interviews with local chefs make my Sundays complete.

So a few weeks ago she mentioned a contest that I couldn’t resist entering… it was a trip to Southern Season in a limo- 25% off shopping at Southern Season and a 5 course dinner paired with Wines at the Weathervane! I won!!!! and it was last night- I can’t tell you how in heaven I was. It was a group of 9 of us who went with Kitty- her surprise friend was one of my amazing clients DJ Mitsch- and I brought my good friend Jill, who owns Catering Works– seriously amazing catering here in the Triangle! I knew she would love it! It was sooooo much fun. The group of people was incredible, the shopping was a blast- we could try anything we wanted. The marketing coordinator, Wendy, was a vegetarian and helped me find some things to try that I have never had- falafel chips, pickled walnuts(crazy but amazing) and some of the most delicious cheeses! Then dinner happened…so many forks, knives, plates of delicious food and wine with each course. Butternut Squash Soup with Rasberry Coulis, ravioli stuffed with cheese and vegetables, my favorite was roasted beets on a bed of sauteed greens, with mashed potatoes, all drizzled with a creamy roquefort cheese sauce- ok, and the dessert, Pots de Creme with sugared beignets. Oops I almost forgot the rattoui with puff pastry! They did my dishes all vegetarian for me- I am still drooling! Maybe I was dreaming???

But today I am awake and she is talking about it on the radio- I wasn’t dreaming! I had a great meal, made new amazing friends, have some new cool things to try in the kitchen, and DJ’s new book to inspire me” Mystic Grits” A Southern Girl’s Journey to Wisdom.

I will post photos soon… but for now a apple cider donut recipe to inspire some kitchen time! Try it on Sunday between 9-12 while listening to 100.7 River Sunday Brunch with Kitty Kinnon- you will not be disappointed!!!

Ok, Now I am off to work and get ready for the Hand Made Market tomorrow! This one is going to be amazing, so many great vendors! 11-5 at Marbles Museum in downtown Raleigh!

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I LOVE this weather- crisp cool mornings, really beautiful fall light. It is my favorite time of year to live as well as be a photographer! I am excited about how many things I have decided to take part in this fall- First, I applied for an art space in the Raleigh Wide Open Eventof Oct.24th and was just accepted. It is going to be such a cool, all day… into the evening, event to celebrate the official opening of City Plaza downtown- there will be an entire day of local art, music, food and activities. I will be selling my art photography- Polaroid transfers, notecards, and photography framed in recycled and modern frames. Look for me in the City Plaza!

The next event coming up is our Halloween Special! It is something I started with my first clients 14 years ago when I had my studio in a tiny apartment in Cameron Village. I never had any trick or treaters, so I asked my clients to bring their kids by and I would also shoot a few photos of them in their amazing costumes. It started a really fun tradition. We now have two full days starting at the crack of dawn until after way after dark where we photograph kids of all ages in their costumes every 20 minutes!!!- We charge a special  fee of $40.00 – we are booking this year on Friday, October 30 and Saturday Oct. 31st. There are not many spaces left, so call soon if you are interested!!!

And Last but not least…. The Hand Made Market! I found out this week that I will be a part of  this amazing market on Nov. 7th. This is at Marbles Kids Museum and it is the perfect place to shop for amazing locally made gifts! This market draws super creative artists, it is truly special! I am honored and so excited to be a part of it. Don’t miss it!!!

Shop The Handmade Market on Sunday


So…. I need to get busy! Yikes! See ya!




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I am so excited. I have been doing some sweet barter for my business with my client/friend Lori Paquette(www.lip-design.com). She has been so fun to work with- her energy is amazing, and her ideas really meshed with what I was hoping for!  Barter is the best, I wish I could completely live off of it. I recently also bartered with Holly Aiken(www.hollyaiken.com), Bella Monica(www.bellamonica.com) and Pooles(www.poolesdowntowndiner.com) Great food, cool hand-bags and design for my business… it is so wonderful. I wish I could barter my mortgage and utilities- that would be the best… Obama… I believe you would help me figure out a way if you could….

I wanted to post my new ad that Lori designed for me. I choose to use my nephews to show their growth over the years I have photographed them. I love to shoot in this way… day in the life moments. So we are focusing some new ads on preserving history, capturing real life, and honoring the traditional fine-art medium of photography. Let us know what you think!


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