Friday, July 23, 2010

Friday Confessions - Vacation Edition

1. I waited until the last minute to pack today because I truthfully am not a fan of a lot of my clothes right now. I packed my favorite trusty outfits and pray that they fit the vacation needs :) I mean really, it's a beach vacation so I will spend 90% of the time in my bathing suit (another dreadful thought :)

2. My husband is the man - got the car all packed. I really should've taken a picture of all the stuff he got in the back of the highlander!

3. My poor dog used to be like my baby, now he left the house to go on his own vacation at my in-laws and I didn't even say goodbye, sorry Doz.

4. I love traveling and getting to eat whatever I want on the road (remember that I think McD's is awesome). Vacation calories are free :)

5. Got some good books packed and I am hoping I will actually get to read them!

6. Swore I wouldn't let my kids get addicted to the tv in the car.....thank goodness for the DVD Player :) I am sure it's going to be our life saver during this ride!

7. Although I love what I do, I will be happy to put my photo business on hold for a week. I know there are a couple of you waiting on me from your sessions, you will just have to be held over with your sneak peeks & trust that it's worth the wait!!

8. My husband and I disagree in driving styles and directions...18 hour car ride what?!! pray for us :)

9. I have a coupon for a free starbucks drink that I can wait to hit up before we leave tonight :) not sure which delightful drink I will choose!

Have a happy week friends and we will be back in action the first week of August! August!?? WHen did you get here?? :)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Growth...and a SNEAK PEEK!

Meghan's Sneak Peek....

I am humbled and thankful for growth in life. Not just the evident, physical growth we go through like my toddlers experience daily but also the ways that we evolve as people. I am especially thankful lately in how much I feel that I have grown as a photographer. It's important to keep moving forward in things, if you ever feel like you have ''arrived" you better check yourself because it's probably not true. I am sure there is still more to learn. I can tell with every wedding I do that I improve, even if slightly, and not just the final product images but also the way in which I work and anticipate what's next. I am thankful for every photographic experience I get because it pushes me to keep going. I also am thankful that with continuing to refine my skills and knowledge, I am producing even more quality images. Not to mention that better gear definitely improves the possibilities!
I think back to the first real wedding I was the solo photographer and...cringe. I had ONE CAMERA and FILM and I am pretty sure I didn't have a clue! It was a month after I graduated college and you would've though all those hours in the darkroom, etc would've prepared me but no. Thank goodness it was outdoors and the bride had all the confidence in the world. I think that was also the day I fell in love with wedding photography :) So thanks Terry & Mark if you are out there and reading this!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Friday Confessions...

I think that weekly confessions are sort of cathartic so I will try to keep them up. Here goes for today!

1. I have eaten a chick fila twice this week for lunch, love that place! And I just learned that kids meal toy can be traded for ice cream, fabulous!

2. I really want to run a marathon in my life but I am a scardy cat. I should really face the fact that I am getting older though and should do this sooner as opposed to later.

3. My to- do list has grown instead of shrinking this week with the prospect of going on vacation next Friday! I have never packed a family for a week long trip before, good times here we come :)

4. I secretly dream of being an interior designer and daily dream of ways to update my house. If time and money were no object, there would be lots of projects going on around here. Just read an awesome book on this front, check out Downtown Chic if you need some inspiration.

5. I am re- reading Sense and Sensibility, gotta love some nineteenth century love quests and excellently spoken English.

6. I am also reading Dave Ramsey and letting him kick my financial butt. Why is managing money so tough sometimes? I think Jesus said it well, "where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."

7. My first real concert was New Kids on the Block, circa 1988. Yes friends, I am sure I was rocking neon, keds, and lace bottomed leggings to rock out to Jordan, John, Danny, Donnie and Joey :) Did I mention I was a second grader?? Bless my parents.

8. Love my hubby for bringing me home a costco frozen yogurt in the 104 degree heat - seriously can't be beat :)

9. Even photographers can have horrible photos...I took my kids to a park by myself last friday like an idiot to try to take some pictures. I keep saying I am pretty sure I have better pictures of my clients kids than my own! It was hot, they were distracted and it wasn't a success but here are two pics that made it worth it :)

Happy Friday!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Money I never regret spending...

Every bride has ideas about what she wants for her wedding day. Some girls have dreamed about it since childhood and others just start to dream about it when they fall in love. I fell into the latter category, once I knew I found the man I wanted to spend the rest of my life with, I started hiding bridal magazines under my bed. No joke! I didn't want to be all out in the open with it, it was my little way of dreaming about being married to Matt without wanting to jinx it. I know...who can jinx what God wants?! Anyhow, I digress. Once we were engaged (I can share that story another time) and the wedding planning got in full swing, tons of decisions were being made.

I remember very clearly researching photographers and feeling a little lost. I started narrowing it down to people who could give a personal reference for their work. My mom reminded me that her friend from work's son, John, graduated a few years ahead of me from UD with a similar degree to myself and that he was shooting commercial work as well as weddings. At the same time, the lady I was interning for had a part time assistant that also shot weddings. I started tracking down both leads. The one guy was just so sweet and was willing to do the day for an UNREAL price (I am ashamed now for even asking someone to do a wedding for that price :) I met with him and saw his body of work, which was solid but it just wasn't ME. I would not have gotten images that were my style or how I wanted to remember my wedding forever.

I just kept going back to John's was ME! It was how I wanted to remember the day and his price was TRIPLE the other guy (but it still was EXTREMELY fairly priced for the going rates and the work entailed). I finally made the decision to move forward with John because I knew I wouldn't regret it. And I don't regret it one bit to this very day almost 4 years later! John was great to be around all day, did a fabulous job and is someone now we call a friend. We happily referred him all over the place and he happily got lots of work. I still happily refer a bride to him if I am unable to do their day.

So brides,what's the lesson here? Find a photographer that you love and as long as their price and products are within reasonable limits for yourself, make the sacrifice. Cut corners in other places, I mean lets be honest flowers are gorgeous but they die. Pictures are forever. What kind of images do you want your grandkids to flip through and say "this was you all young and pretty and skinny grandma?" :) Shoot I say that to myself already!! haha...Happy Thursday!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Sometimes bigger is better....

So I remember in the college days when I used to spend HOURS in the darkroom...yes friends, darkroom. I mastered using scissors, a can opener and film reel all in pitch dark..that was a big day when I could crack that film canister open, get it wound on the wheel and perfectly stash it in the black canister hoping to expose some hidden treasure on the role. Then I would spend hours with my film cut into little strips, slipping them into the enlarger and doing even more experiments printing my own film. So many great memories in that basement in Taylor Hall at UD.
I share all this because I got a little reminiscent working on this week's wedding. I blogged the small collages and I realized some things are just definitely better big! I remember the first time I went from printing 8 x 10 sheets in the darkroom to 11 x 14 .... oohhh things got prettier and made more of a visual impact. My instructor said "once you go bigger, you don't want to go back" but if you ever have purchased photographic paper - you know why us college kids went small! I used to have to work for the price of paper..I digress. Yesterday's blog collages were like "oh those are nice little snapshots" but when I look at them I don't feel the weight of the emotion and beauty that I see in the larger images. I wish every bride could come to my house after the images are done and watch them go by on my big purdy computer screen. Bigger is definitely better!!

So thanks for going through the growing pains with me as I work it out in life, photography and business! Here are some bigger versions of the beauty of Lauren & Adam's day!

(I just realized that I used the word "so" to start at least 3 sentences, bear with me while I work it out with my writing. I tend to write like I talk, so I guess I say "so" a a lot :)

Monday, July 12, 2010

Congrats Lauren & Adam!

Lauren has been a very lifetime friend of my husband, their families have literally been friends forever :) It's a real blessing in life to have those friends that you pretty much just count among the family. It was a great honor to shoot Lauren & Adam's wedding a couple weekends ago. It was a beautiful & toasty summer day in Bucks County, Pa.

Here are a handful of shots from the day! Let me know how you all like the collage viewing. I am trying it out as a way to get more imagery on the blog with a different visual twist. Happy viewing!

Don't take yourself too seriously :)

Just in case you ever wonder what a photographer does at a wedding besides photos...I have done it all from helping to get spots out of a brides dress, to helping to fix messed up bouquets or haridos that have come undone, to anything else a spare hand is needed in if I am not busy capturing a moment. When you are frequently around weddings, you get good at these little things and I especially don't mind helping in the small things that help ease a bride's mind.
My husband stole my camera at a wedding a couple weeks ago of a good friend to get a shot of me jumping on the dance floor to do the cha-cha slide. And yes, I look like the only one out there because I was starting the trend :)

Hey..if you know me, I definitely don't take myself too seriously! My advice to all the other photogs out there, yes you are a professional but please enjoy life...don't take yourself too seriously either or you just might miss out on the cha-cha slide ;) Happy monday everyone and I hope to post more later on this beautiful wedding!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Embracing New Style, Chapter 2

So today I thought I was going to go crazy with another day of 100+ degree heat outside and the prospect of not leaving the house. So where do I turn for fun and climate control?? You guessed it, the MALL :) The kiddos and I went to the mall mostly for me - to see humanity, drink a starbucks and take in a stroll. Of course these meanderings led me right to the sale rack in J. Crew, you know "just looking" and I scored big (or so i think). I took some jeans into the dressing room with trepidation, not having worn a tapered type leg jean since 9th grade (in the 90's :). Much to my elation, they not only fit (amen) but they actually looked good (hallelujah). And better yet - I scored this great pair of jeans in an acceptable size (I've been running a lot more lately, trying to lose the rest of the baby weight)....and the price tag... $15.99!!! They were original $98, then slashed down to $19.99 and then an additional 20% off clearance. SO ladies, keep on embracing new options for your wardrobe and keep an eye out for those bargains. I definitely walked a little taller out of the store with my great purchase in that pretty little gray J.Crew bag!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Sneak Peek...Lauren & Adam

SO as a photographer you are constantly watching for "moments" - moments that visually explain everything. I am getting started editing a wedding of a dear friend from this past weekend and I came to this image....stopped, smiled, and thought "this says it all." It's the first moment Adam took Lauren's hand in their ceremony and the smiles on both their faces just get me! So here's a sneak peek before the rest.....aaahhhhh love :)

Fun before the Fourth!

Last week as we were gearing up for the holiday weekend, I got to do a morning shoot with a friend and her sisters. Since everyone was in town, she thought it would be a great opportunity to get everyone together for a shoot for their mom. We had fun with all the grandkids and some of them liked my camera better than others :) Here are just a few of my favs from the day.... of course the one of all of them with the funny faces pretty much just makes me laugh! Notice the two crying to the right, this wasn't just for the "funny face" picture... Gotta love kiddos for keeping me on my toes!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Monday Confesssions

Whew, have I been living at a break neck speed! I knew that wedding season would keep me on my toes and it sure has, along with my babies first birthday and a national holiday to boot all in the last week :) I thought tonight I would sit down for a moment to just share a few more things about a little confessional booth! I am definitely a wear your heart on your sleeve type person and sometimes it's probably a bit too much. So here goes for today...

1. I love McDonalds, I don't care what people say - if it didn't taste so good those fools wouldn't be making billions!

2. Yes, I love the word "fools"

3. I love Jane Austen and just decided tonight to reread Sense and Sensibility, we shall see how it goes. Lizzy & Darcy were Jacob and Bella back in the day...minus the bloodsucking and werewolf issues! A girl can't get enough of a good love story and really...that has to be the best opening line to a novel ever, "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife."

4. I like free stuff, especially good trash. No, I am not joking. I am pretty sure that every room in our house (minus our kids room) has something I have "rescued" from doom. I love old things and also love re-purposing things so this is an old habit that dies hard. I seriously used to take bike rides early in the morning on trash day to see if anything good was out. And I am usually talking furniture or decorative items people...not gross stuff!

5. I am like a human GPS - great sense of direction and I remember almost everywhere I've ever been. I am good to travel with for this reason but I can be obnoxious about it so smack me if I am.

6. I still have 13 lbs of baby weight to lose.

7. I am itching to travel somewhere where I can't speak the language and the money looks like a toy. I haven't been out of the country since my honeymoon almost 4 years ago!!

8. I appreciate people's small gestures in tonight when my neighbor rang the doorbell and handed me a tray of gorgeous & delicious baked treats "just because" or when my other neighbor came over last week to fix something in our house that had been undone for almost 2 years. (yes, you are wishing you had neighbors like that! I have FABULOUS neighbors :)

9. In 11th grade, we went on a field trip to NYC around Christmas time and I made it onto MTV's new year's countdown show requesting a song by 98 degrees (seriously...I ain't ashamed :)

10. I am BEYOND BLESSED to have two healthy children, I try never to take this for granted.

Ok that's enough for tonight, hope you at least got a chuckle out of me or maybe I made you think of a few funny things about yourself. Take a minute now & then to consider your life, both serious and trivial -I think it's good for the soul.

Blog posts from photo shoots coming up this week :) Goodnight internet!