JR and Wendla are getting married in July at the Granite Bay Golf Club. JR lives in Dixon and Wendla currently lives in Napa and so they are busy making it all work somewhat long-distance now. In keeping with their desire to get married in the Sacramento region, we met up at Sailor Bar in Fair Oaks for their engagement session. These two love to laugh, especially JR who finds it hard to keep a straight face for longer than a few moments. Except, that is, when he’s kissing Wendla, which he very, very serious about.
We had a fantastic time in the sunshine exploring the local trails. Can’t wait for their wedding!
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In my time dealing with chronic pain and injury, I have worked with three PCPs, two osteopaths, two massage therapists, an acupuncturist, two chiropractors, two orthopedic specialists, a neurologist, and no fewer than ten physical therapists.All had their own idea of what my body could and needed to do to find relief. And yet none of them have come close to providing the kind of relief that I find when I regularly attend a pilates or barre class at The Pilates Twist in Folsom, with owner, Hilary.
Hilary is an incredibly gifted person. She can casually watch 8 people arrive to her class, observe their gait and their posture, and then immediately tailor a routine that synchronizes with the physical needs of each person. When you’re in-class with Hilary, she doesn’t just go through the motions of teaching you en-masse, she’s paying attention to every single, unique body in the room and providing gentle guidance and adjustments specific to you, while challenging you and providing a great workout. I always leave her class feeling 3 inches taller and more physically free than when I went in. I also manage to get sore muscles without sparking pain cycles or injury, which is what happens with almost every other kind of workout I participate in.
So, when she asked me to capture her family as a gift to her father, I jumped at the chance.
We decided to keep it simple (which I find is generally the hallmark of all great sessions) and walk the trails behind her house to the local park with her husband, son, and two dogs. As the sun set into a beautiful, pink-hued sunset, we ran around the playground and enjoyed just the fun and easy togetherness of a regular family evening.
Let’s have some fun!
I love photographing families in Winter and Spring. It’s much easier to be fun and relaxed when it’s not 100 degrees. Get in touch to learn about my new Shortie sessions, which include a 45 minute session and all the digital images for a budget-friendly price.
Any time I get to spend with the Brandt family, I jump at the chance. They’re warm, open, playful, funny, and generous. So, when I had the opportunity to capture some of mom, Amber’s, extended family last month, I forgot I was supposed to be taking the month off and said YES!
I had met Amber’s parents a couple of times before but this was the first time I got to hang with her brother and his beautiful family. We met up at a small park in Folsom, did some of the “everyone get in the photo and smile” shots but then indulged my need for something more playful by playing games like red-light-green-light, a family chicken-dance, a group march, and finally some time on the swings. I know the group shots are what they came for, but I hope that in years to come they’ll be just as thankful for the candid photos of them having fun and being playful together.
I’ll admit that I generally am not a fan of shooting extended family sessions because it often turns into an entire session of wedding group shots that ends up being not a lot of fun for everyone. But since I know and have worked with the Brandt family many times, and knew they knew what to expect from me and how I roll in my sessions, I knew it wouldn’t be anything like that painful experience. If you’d love to get your extended family together and want something more than just the group shots, some memories of you laughing and playing and having fun together, then absolutely call me. I’m down!
“And once the storm is over, you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.”―Haruki Murakami
I completed the second year of my photo-a-day project on December 31st, 2017. When I started documenting my days on Jan 1, 2016, I never thought I’d make it through a year, let alone two. And, for sure, this year I almost gave up many times.
It was a really tough year. The toughest. On many days, I felt like a little rowboat caught out on the ocean in the perfect storm. I have never felt so adrift, so at-sea, in so many areas of my life at once. It brought me to my knees. It was energy-sucking, confidence draining, emotional nudity. It was humbling. I questioned everything, including myself, and I’m still not sure that I’m standing on solid ground yet. Have you ever got off of a boat after a long, rough voyage? For a while after you step on land, you find yourself still internally swaying, not sure if it’s the ground beneath you moving, or if your equilibrium hasn’t yet caught up to the fact that you’re finally off the boat. That’s how it feels right now. Shaky. Uncertain. But also a bit of a relief.
Looking back on these images was hard and helpful. Hard because it’s like I began the year in one life and left it in another. Helpful because I realized that, along the way, there were many moments I wouldn’t want to write-off.
And that’s why I’m going to continue in 2018. Who knows what the next 12 months will bring my way? Who knows what life I will be standing in on December 31st of this year? And who knows how grateful I will be for the reminder of the little moments along the way.
Maybe I can’t be with you every single day but I can document the flavor of your life in a documentary session. Trust me, every memory has its value, even the moments that don’t feel like they need memorializing at the time. Get in touch to learn more.
I love capturing the unique spirit of families. I love finding *that thing* that friends and family know about them and seeing that come through in the photos so that people who have never met them before suddenly “get” them in a new way. It not only makes me feel fulfilled in the contemporary moment, the satisfaction that my client has photos that represent the best parts of who they are, but also in the historical moment, thinking about how these images may be found someday by their grandchildren or distant descendants who learn a little more about how they are from seeing these expressions, gestures, and places.
The Fong family have been friends of mine for 14, almost 15 years. It seems almost unbelievable that this is true but it is. They are a family driven by faith and dedication to doing the right and loving thing. They are also goofy and silly and prone to crazy faces and eye rolling and incessant bunny ears. As I was editing these photos, I cried a little because I felt I saw the people I know and love coming through each image and sharing themselves with me. I felt like I captured *that thing*.
Of course, the moment was extra special because these are my friends, my extended family even, but I can’t deny that there is an element of this in every session I capture for a family. I know it’s not “about me”. It’s most definitely about them, my clients, their family, but there’s a reason I picked up a camera instead of a paintbrush or a violin… and this is it.
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