For the eyes. For the heart. For the ears. For the feet. For the soul.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Somewhere down the crazy river

Do you ever wonder how you survived, thus far?

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Saved by a woman.

I wanted to do a photo shoot and Michael wasn't that into it. We have photos of everyone else but very little of us together. I stomped off, all pissed off. Then, he wanted to shoot and I didn't. The light was perfect as it was dusk, but quickly getting darker. I cried and he chased me. Dramatic yes. He insisted we take photos but I honestly said forget it as my eyes were puffy and red and I won't be fake in a photo shoot. Then, we made up and this was the result. Real is always better than not and these probably turned out better than if we had set up a staged shoot.

I honestly believe that emotion shines through photos. This is why it's so important to capture those moments as they are happening. The love and overwhelming joy we felt on our wedding day could have never been recreated later.

Shoot in the moment. Always. Even if it doesn't seem picture perfect.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

You're all I need, to get by.

I don't understand why we all speak in riddles and rhymes. For example, when a status is posted on Facebook, it is always written in an inferred fashion and hopefully the people it is directed to get the hint. Why not just speak the truth? Then, if the person comes to us and says in an accusatory way, "was that comment directed to me?", we say no and feign ignorance. It makes no sense.

Who has time for bullshit these days? Facebook causes problems. If you do some spring cleaning and remove people off your list, they freak out and wonder why, yet they never talk to you or comment on anything you're doing when you know they are all over Facebook. Even further, you've never spoken on the phone or in person in years so what's the point?

In my humble opinion, after some hard lessons learned, there is no reason to fire everyone completely out of your life if they don't meet up to your standards. There are some people that you are not meant to spend every day with and it is fine to keep fluff acquaintances just at that; acquaintances.

The truth is, when a friendship becomes more work and leaves you drained rather than refreshed, it is time to move on before things get too sour. We've all had those toxic relationships, whether it's a friendship or a romantic relationship. Follow that feeling in your gut; it will never lead you astray.

About a year ago, I wrote a blog post about a book written about the friend who got away. It retells the story of broken friendships from both sides of the story which is an interesting take on a book or friendship, considering there are always three sides to every story; yours, theirs and the truth.

The truth is, I've fired some people I probably shouldn't have and in other instances kept people around much longer than I should have. My mom always says familiarity breeds contempt and it is so true. As human beings, we have little tolerance for each other, even if you are related. We learn to work around and accept certain situations such as in-laws, peers at work and neighbours. When it comes to the limited free time we have however, who you choose to spend that rare free time with, should be someone that accepts you as you are, on a good or bad day, reciprocates in the friendship and most of all is real and true.

There is a huge difference between an acquaintance and a friend and I've learned the hard way that having a handful of true friends is much more rewarding than a room full of acquaintances.

Spring has sprung. Have you taken stock of your relationships and cleaned house lately?

Friday, March 25, 2011

Say what you need to say.

Yesterday I spent the afternoon with my mom. We shopped, had lunch, shopped some more, took some fun photos, and shopped some more. She asked me to come to her school for a bit but I just wanted to come home. I got to thinking on my ride home, after reading someone's facebook status about how she wishes she could have tea with her dad just one more time.

What would be the hardship in me going to hang out with my mom at her school for a little bit? My mother in law invited us for dinner on Sunday and Michael enjoys staying home on his weekends, especially Sundays. She reminded him that they weren't going to be around forever and he said he heard a sadness in her voice when hanging up the phone.

The truth of the matter is, our parents are getting older. It's important to spend time with them. True, you can't live your life thinking every day that something might happen as none of us are spared from the inevitable outcome but while we are here, say what you need to say and make time in your busy life to give someone else a simple joy....the gift of your time.

Say what you need to say now, before it's too late.


Thursday, March 24, 2011

You really got a hold on me.

This week in my photos.....

1. Love letters, from a husband to his wife kept under lock & key.

2. Sit quiet and still and the butterfly will land. Chase it like mad and be sure it will fly away.

3. Time

4. Dream big, little one.

5. My mother and her umbrella

6. The secret to unlocking your dreams is to look to the sky.

7. 3 Chefs

On another note, I love Haley in this season's American Idol and don't understand how she keeps ending up in the bottom three with her sexy, raspy and soulful voice. When something sounds this good or makes you feel great from head to toe, you just can't get enough.

Monday, March 21, 2011

~ Natalie Spencer Photography ~

Think back to when someone inspired you to do what you love...maybe it was a teacher who stood in front of the class, and you daydreamed you would love to be like them one day? Maybe it was your mom and one day, you grew up, appreciated her and wanted children of your own. I remember that specific moment with photography.

I was busy planning my destination wedding and stumbled upon someone ridiculously fabulous on a bridal planning site. I looked at her work and later wrote about her and her many amazing talents back when I first started my blog a year ago.

Through the past year and a half, her and I have kept in touch and she's given me hints and tricks and advice about my photography. I instantly wanted to know the specifics of how her photos looked so amazing. Of course no photographer is going to give up all their secrets! That's what it's all about...working hard and creating your own signature brand.

There is a fine line between a muse and a copycat. I love her style but am conscious and careful not to copy it. When accused by someone of such, I contacted my muse to which she answered that I am inspired by her...and one piece of advice she learned in school was that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Her and I have shared some personal stories with each other. Isn't it amazing how you can connect with someone without knowing them? The internet has forever changed the way we communicate with people. I met my husband on a dating site and I often tease him that I "put a spell on him". What, you didn't know that I am a witch who can do such a thing?

This weekend I have the chance to shoot with my muse in Ottawa. Michael and I will then carry on to Montreal; a city in which he has never ventured to. (Be prepared for some fabulous creations on his blog from our inspirational trip).

There are some things in life that are a certainty besides death and taxes. For certain there is never enough money. For certain, there will always be bills to pay. And for damn well certain, if you want something bad enough in life, you will find a way to make it happen.

Nobody said it was easy.

Check out my fabulous muse, Natalie Spencer here:

** P.S. Natalie designed both my logo for my photos as well as Michael's on Verses From My Kitchen. Contact her if you are looking for a creative logo for an affordable price.

Unplug and recharge

This weekend was about getting back to the basics. It was time to unplug from our gadgets, spend some quality time with my husband and friends, just enjoying life and reflecting upon the simple things like writing, laughter, fresh air, future dreams and love.

I've learned a few things quickly about starting my own business. Like anything, photography is an extremely competitive and cutthroat industry. Because of the complexity of equipment and technical skills needed, it used to be primarily male dominated however that is quickly changing. With the amount of people buying digital cameras, and the potential to make additional income as stay at home moms, added to the wealth of knowledge that can be found on the internet, the females are moving up the ranks in the photography world.

I have never been a competitive person. I've never enjoyed sports or anything relating to comparison with others. I am not sure if it's the only child in me but I like to do my own thing. I've discovered that photography is no different. I know in life, to be at the top of your game, you have to give 150% of your time and effort and be willing to start at the bottom, yet trample over whomever it takes to climb the ranks quickly.

I learned this when working in Finance. The younger the staff that were hired, the more competitive things would become. My position and stance changed as I would interview in my early 30's. I would flat out tell the interviewer that I was not looking to take over their job and become a top Executive. I was turned down for some roles later in life because my resume showed significant and rapid growth and movement throughout companies in my 20's and they thought I would become bored with a position and leave. I explained to them I was looking for a 9-5 job to work, do a good job, but at the same time, come home and forget about at the end of the day. Something shifted in me when I met Michael. I wanted a balanced life. I didn't want my relationship to suffer at the expense of long hours and extra projects.

I was speaking with my muse the other day and she recalls spending many expensive years developing her photography skills and business and in class one day there was a round table discussion about where each student saw themselves in the future. Everyone excitedly chirped about their hopes and dreams to work in fashion or production or one day hit the big time and see their work in Vogue magazine. My muse said she hoped to one day be a mommy and wife and do photography part time. Everyone looked at her like she was crazy.

Right now I'm just starting out, but I definitely do not see myself as running a huge business and working every weekend for the next ten years. A healthy life is about balance and sometimes, you have to unplug, recharge your batteries and figure out what's important to you.
We are all different and measure our success different.

Ideally, I'd like to gain my experience this year and then run a boutique studio where I enjoy one on one experiences, get to know couples or individual's stories and be able to photograph and write about it. Small and intimate venues definitely are where my heart is right now.

Home is also where my heart is.

Friday, March 18, 2011

From my family to yours.

In a world full of all sorts of people, you just have to be thankful for your family. There are good people out there, and yes, nasty people, but you have to ask yourself, "would I rather have their life instead?" I don't think so. For me, life is all about balance. If you can do what you love, make a little income out of it, be home with your family at night and smile every day, you've got the world on a string. Let your instincts guide you and you'll be on your way.

From my family to yours, have a wonderful weekend.