Thursday, May 29, 2008


Okay, so, rather than nerd alert you every time I start a sentence, let me just post a sweeping nerd alert for this entire post.  Gail and I got together to talk shop and take pictures of each other, and let me tell you ... this was a totally new experience for me.  First of all, I haven't been in front of the camera that much in several years, and secondly, if there are any photographers reading this, I TOTALLY recommend shooting portraits sometime with another photographer.  It offers a lot of insight into how your subjects feel, posing, and whatnot.  I feel like I actually came away from this a better photographer, lame as that may sound. :)

Oh, and if you want to see Gail's pictures of me, go check out her blog, linked above.  The last one is my favorite, but there are several good ones.

Okay, so anyway, I had an awesome time in the post production of these.  I really felt liberated to do whatever I wanted to them and to try some new things, so there's kind of a variety here and I'll tell you a little about them as we go.  Ready ... okay!


Compositionally, this was one of my faves.  But then I kind of rethought the ... ummm ... verbiage... on the door and thought, I hope there aren't a lot of sick perverts reading my blog, although it is the internet so I've gotta think there's at least one or two.


This is Gail trying to hold it together in spite of how hilarious I am.  If you ask me, she did about as good a job as Jimmy Fallon and Horatio Sans, but she's still really cute.  On this pic, I ran a retro action.  I don't think Billy was a huge fan of the coloring, but I liked it so WHATEVER! :)


Alright, so it's not a picture of her face which kind of WAS the whole point, but there was nonetheless something about this one that reached out and grabbed me.  Also, seeing as how this is the first black and white I'm posting, I would just like to tell you that I really feel like I rocked the black and white in this session.  That's right, I just tooted my own horn WHILE patting myself on the back.  Can you stand it?


So I know this picture is pretty dark but I felt like such a badass facial expression deserved something dramatic and I love it.  I call it my Sin City picture.


Similar but lighter, which totally changes the mood of the picture.  I love the black and white tones here.  It seems like ... I feel like it looks like a scene from a rock video, but one with a lot of emotion.  Can anyone think of an appropriate rock song for this picture to be in the video?


This is not my normal picture ... the composition is pretty different than stuff that I usually do and I have to kind of wonder if it was an accident.  There' s a lot of negative space in there, but I feel like it totally works and I love it.  It's pretty much opened my eyes to exploring negative space a little further.  Good homework for me!


This picture and another one that's coming up were kind of ... well, an exercise in getting over mental hurdles.  I feel like one of the things that is totally drilled into your head in photography school is how terrible fluorescent lighting is (not that anyone who's ever tried on a swimsuit doesn't know this).  As a result, yellow and green tinted pictures have become kind of a no-no in my mind, especially since I spend so much time color correcting for fluorescent lighting.  But like ... what's really so bad about yellow?  I kind of like yellow.  It's the color of the sun, and dandelions,  and certain t-shirts that I have really enjoyed over the years.  So I added some gold (the classy word for yellow) tones to a couple of the pictures and I love them, so I might have to try this more often.  This particular effect was achieved with a gold overlay.


This is the second gold-toned picture.  Here, I just adjusted the color temperature.  This one is my American Eagle ad. :)  Actually, Gail was trying to show me how she wanted me to pose, but she was MUCH more successful at it than I was (a model, I am not), so unfortunately for her, I reaped all the benefits of her good ideas!  


Do you guys ever notice how I totally lead up to a grand finale?  Yeah, I do that a lot and I'm totally doing it here.  Anyway, I have really made a point of not swearing in this blog since I use it for work, but I really effing love this picture.  And the WALL!  Oh, the wall.  I am hoping that it's a secret I can keep to myself a little longer because I love it so much.  But I thought between beautiful Gail and the amazing rainbow in the background that this picture was absolutely magical.


Best for last!  This was my favorite picture and I think really captured The Essence of Gail.  Can I tell you guys a secret about myself?  I know it seems morbid, but a lot of times I think about pictures that would be shown at someone's funeral.  But really, it's not TOTALLY morbid, it's just that I really want to make something that people will have and enjoy for the rest of their lives, and that really say something about who they are.  So if I think a picture is "funeral worthy", then you know it's good!  Maybe my ego is getting out of control here, but I totally think this is one of those.  

Something that I usually say is that I feel like I get about one REALLY GOOD picture for about every 30 that I take.  I only took 36 pictures total of Gail and I was really happy with three or four of them, so this was a pretty satisfying shoot for me!  Thanks for playing with me, Gail!  And as always, comments and critiques are appreciated! :)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Lacey & Branson: Engagement

Alright, so I'm pretty sure that no one really cares about the more technical aspects of blogging (also, sometimes I'm not really sure that I even care), but that is not going to stop me from telling you that this is my first post importing pictures from Flickr, and so far, I'm loving it. MUCH easier and faster. I think that the next thing I need to do is start converting to special "color profiles" for the internet, and like many things in life, I don't really know HOW that works, just THAT it works. I'll continue to keep you posted (against your will) about my blogging learning experiences. :)

But I've kept you all waiting for Lacey & Branson long enough, and the wait is finally over! Yay!

Okay, now this is one of the very first pictures that I took. Awesome! I usually have to work people up to feeling comfortable and to laughing at my own special brand of jokes, but these two got off to an excellent start!


A view of the lovely White River, shot in between me dodging pedestrians on the quite narrow, fenced in sidewalk. :)


Now, there are other versions of this picture where they're leaning closer together, and one very cute picture of Lacey leaning up on Branson's back, but I couldn't resist this one, even though it was probably the least "posed" of the bunch. Or possibly because of that. :) For those who don't know me, I spend a LOT of time looking at photo websites and reading books and whatnot, and something that I came across recently was saying that photographers need to seriously lay off Photoshop and that just because you CAN take a perfect picture, doesn't necessarily mean that you SHOULD. Obviously I'm not abandoning Photoshop, but I am trying to actively embrace the sometimes imperfect moments that are really beautiful and sincere, just like this one. Besides, it's cute like whoa, and you know it.


Here's one for the wall! These two are beyond freaking gorgeous. Branson's eyes! Lacey's smile! Shut up! I love it! (Also, Branson reminds me a lot of my brother, which was very fun.)


Oh, right. This is the first one that I am aware might not be everyone's cup of tea, but here's the story. On my New York trip, I took a TON of Polaroids (by the way,, and I am IN LOVE, like madly in love, like LACEY & BRANSON in love with Polaroid right now. I love the softness and how it really has its own very unique look. So I tried to replicate that with this shot, and I think it was fairly successful. Yay! So I love it, and I hope they do too!


When I first saw this one, I thought, awww, poor Branson, he got stuck in a tree! But I still liked it a lot. But now, I don't feel sorry for Branson at all, mostly because my urge to sing "Lacey & Branson sitting in a tree" has totally eclipsed all of my other emotions!


Here's another one where, yeah, there were other shots of Branson's face not being partially covered by Lacey's face, but I liked this one the best! They just look so happy and relaxed with each other, which I realize is sort of becoming an engagement picture cliche, but the whole thing about cliches is that they BECOME cliches by being true!


This one was my favorite of the entire bunch, so you'd think I'd save it till last but I'm sort of anal about chronology. But it was exactly what I wanted it to be. And I applied that Polaroid look to this one too, but with really bright colors (instead of a little desaturating). This one is going on my website, and I think I'm actually going to get my butt in gear and do that today. My website has been a little neglected in comparison to my blog. :)




I have no idea what was going on here, but all I know is that I love Lacey's crazy face and how Branson is all amused but sort of unaffected, like, here's this crazy girl next to me--I have no idea what she's doing, but she's cute and I've got ice cream, so I'm having a good time! (I have no idea if that's what he was really thinking ... I'm probably a better photographer than psychic.)


And finally ... another one of those moments that you just can't fake. I love it.

Okay, so I know I say this all the time (but I swear I always mean it when I say it!), but I am totally looking forward to Lacey & Branson's wedding. It sounds like it's going to be a lot of fun, and I had a really good time with them on the engagement session. Plus, you know how I always bond with people over random things? For these two, it was totally politics. We were all Barack 'n' Rollers and they were registered to vote and everything! It just made me so fond of them. Because I'm a geek. :)

Plus, their wedding is in Muncie, right down the street from where I used to live! I can't wait. I'm totally going to get their early to enjoy my favorite Muncie staples, like an MT Cup everything bagel and a Den pop. Mmmm .... Muncie food. :)

Friday, May 16, 2008

Heads up on wedding prices!

Hey everyone! I just wanted to make a formal announcement via blog (what an oxymoron--formal blog announcement) that my prices will be going up effective June 1st! The pricing structure will also change a little bit to make room for albums, but not to worry--CDs of high-res images are still included in all packages! So if you're thinking about booking and want the current prices, I need to get your 50% retainer fee by May 31st.

Now that that's out of the way, I'm obviously back in town and am pretty much back to my regular e-mailing schedule! I did take pictures in New York and I will post them one of these days (can't have everyone thinking I was just slacking all week!), but I have some other pictures waiting for me before I get to those. Lacey & Branson, you're up next! :)

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Sarah & Corey: Engagement

Hooray for meeting goals! I told you guys I'd have these up before I left and here they are, on the eve of my Big New York Adventure. But, since I'm a little pressed for time, I didn't get to upload them through Photobucket this time, so that's the goal for the next post (which will be Lacey & Branson's engagement session!). But anyway, on with the show!
Okay, so I apparently met Corey & Sarah at the Convention Center Bridal Show in January, but I talked to SO MANY PEOPLE at that thing that I couldn't remember them. But how could I forget? They're so fun and cute!

We started at the top of the War Memorial, which is also where their relationship started, so ... fitting. :) But let me tell you ... the WIND! It was like standing behind a jet engine! But thankfully in the little doorway it blocked most of it, and we got this gem of a picture!

Sarah decided they would do a serious picture which I think looks totally hot, but don't get too used to seeing them not smiling--they are all fun, all the time. :)

I had been DROOLING for a couple weeks over this scene, and it was right at the end of my alley so I saw it like at least twice a day. And then here comes this gorgeous pair just in time, because after that weekend, all the blooms fell off! Guess the trees decided that their work here was done. :)

Sarah is TOTALLY a flower in the hair girl! All her idea, once again. We were having a little trouble keeping it in there, but thankfully, I am the girl McGuyver and yanked a bobby pin out of my hair, which she totally went for (I was semi-worried she might think that was gross), and that did the trick.

I love this one. It looks like a sweet 50's romance picture. Also, Corey has a great, natural smile for the camera--a lot of guys are a little nervous about the camera at first, but he was a champ the entire time!

Oh my GOSH, you guys. I cannot wait to tell you the story behind this picture. So the deal with the rose is that it's one of those feather roses that you get at the gas station and Corey got it for Sarah when they first started dating, so she wanted to incorporate it, which I was all about. As an aside, I have always loved the feather roses (and wooden roses at the State Fair), but you can't really get those for yourself, so I was really vicariously loving this one.

Anyway, we were very near an alley with a purple wall and since, as I told you, this is my neighborhood, I knew it was there and it came to mind right away. Now this is the nerdy part. I call this the "Waluigi picture" after the character in some of the Nintendo Wii games (especially Mario Party). He's like an evil Luigi or something, but he wears purple and when he wins something, he pulls out a giant red rose and declares himself the winner in a funny voice.

So yeah, I totally DO draw inspiration for pictures from Nintendo Wii. That's just what kind of girl I am.

The rose makes another appearance!

Yeah, yeah, I know I'm going to photography hell for putting them in the middle of the picture but it is CUTE and I like the RED so take THAT! :)

Man, did I have some serious fun with these or what? Okay, so the story is that we went to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Corey works there), and this is the Yard of Bricks. Obviously, you need to have a picture of that, but the easiest way to maximize the bricks while still having them in the picture was shadows! And, okay, I like shadow pictures so I might have encouraged it. The hearts were my favorite, but there are also some great ones of Corey doing a Heisman pose. :)

Obviously people are my favorite thing to take pictures of, but I really sort of like shots like this because I can have a lot of fun in the post-processing (which is to say, Photoshop), with contrast and color and not having to worry about the people turning out like Oompa Loompas. In fact, one day I was feeling kind of creatively blocked so I started working on these and I had so much fun that I decided to show two of them here, but there were like four drafts. And then at the end, I was all charged up again to be creative!

They're a little squinty because I might have been making them look up at me and basically directly into the sun, but I still think it's SO cute. (Have I said the word "cute" enough times in this post? Well, whatever, it totally applies.)

The next two were taken in some sweet seats on the track (right by the finish line), and I LOVE how they came out. See the two between their butts here? That's because they're getting married on the 2nd of August. That's me, always thinkin'!

Oh, STOP! I can not get over the cuteness and the gorgeousness! Sarah wanted a picture doing the "I love you" sign, and this is it, but I also like it because I think it looks a little rock and roll, and she is the singer in a rock and roll cover band, which I think is unspeakably awesome.

And let's finish off with a super fun one! I love it. It just says it all. :)

Alright, so I am now REALLY excited for Sarah & Corey's wedding because they are so much fun, and I know their wedding will be too. Also, I tend to bond with clients at some point over some random common interest. However, Sarah & Corey might be one of my favorite bonds ever because we got into a hilarious discussion about all the bad music that we love. There was a lengthy discussion about Hanson, and I was more than enthusiastic about telling them that Thong Song graces my iPod because I just might want to listen to it ... all the time! And then Corey and I had shared a moment defying anyone to listen to Boyz II Men's "It's So Hard To Say Goodbye To Yesterday" and not get emotional and maybe even a little misty-eyed. I wonder if I remembered to tell them how much I love the Nelly & Tim McGraw song ... yeah, I said it! And I'll say it "over and over again"! :)

Anyway, thanks for the good time, guys! I loved the Speedway and had so much fun with you and can't wait to do it again in August!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


Hey, did you guys know that May is National Photograph Month? Yeah, pretty cool! So I thought that perhaps in honor of this momentous occasion, I should show you my latest, favoritest photo! Here it is, in all its glory--the Indianapolis skyline!

Yeah, I said it. I'm in love with my own picture! But isn't that really the entire point of being a photographer? I think so.

Now here comes the part where we discuss. First of all, I did not do anything to this picture except color and contrast adjustments in camera raw. Nothing was added or taken away, and those are the way the clouds really turned out (although they aren't that neat in the SOOC shot--that's straight-out-of-camera for the non-nerds among us). Billy commented that it looked more like an illustration than a photo almost, and while I totally agree, I'm not handy enough in Photoshop to whip something like that up from scratch. And when Dan (of Nicole & Dan) thought it was cool, that's when I knew that I was The Big Boss Applesauce, as they say. I actually took this picture in hopes of somewhat matching my Chicago picture that some of you may recall, but this one turned out so much better that I think Chicago is going to need a re-do.

Where did I shoot this beauty from, you might be wondering? The Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Sarah and Corey (who I have mentioned before and who you still haven't "met") took me there for their engagement pictures. I love that I got such a clear shot of the city from such an iconic place, and I also love that when all is said and done, the skyline looks black and the Dome looks bright white. It's not going to be there much longer, but it'll be special and live forever in this picture. And our hearts. (Do you see it there? Toward the right?)

Also, whoa, sorry about the massive plunge into cheese there. I sometimes can't help myself.

Anyway, I'm headed to New York on Friday morning and will be there through Wednesday, and since I'm not sure what internet access will look like, I'm going to try to post Sarah & Corey's engagement session before then. That's my goal for the week! Will I make it??? Cliffhanger!