Wednesday, June 28, 2006

My Life. My Love. My Art.

Well, I'm elbow deep in this blog and realized that many of you may not know who I all! Since I just changed the title of my blog, I thought now would be a perfect time. So, here goes nothin'...

My Life.
Go, go, go... That's what most who know me would
say I'm like. Constantly on the move, trying different things and getting crazy ideas in my head (I can thank my mom and grandma for that...). I can't ever just sit still and do nothing. Watch TV? Nope, not me... If I do get the chance to watch something, generally I am also reading a magazine or working on some kind of project. Why? Heck if I know. It becomes a little irritating sometimes (just ask my husband...), but it's just how I'm wired. And, honestly, I wouldn't have it any other way. It's what has given me the drive to start not one, but two businesses from home and so far, have made them a success (much to the thanks of my wonderful and loyal clients). So, me in a nutshell? I am a mom, a wife, a sister, a daughter, a friend, and a photographer... And, hopefully I find the balance to do all of these. However, the majority of my life revolves around nap schedules, messy hands and childhood laughter. And, thus revolves around my *almost* two year old little boy. On to him next...

My Love.
My greatest love has always been my husband of almost four years. We have been together nearly half of our lives. Yep, high school sweethearts. He is definitely my other half - the part that makes me slow down a bit...calm down a bit...and enjoy the days. The love of my life. That is until my son came into the picture. I never knew I could love someone so much as I did when they handed that perfect little bundle to me. I was falling in love and it's been a constant ride ever since. So, now I have two greatest loves. One reminds me what it's like to be a laugh hard every smell the take time to listen to puppies barking, airplanes flying and birds chirping. The other one reminds me what it's like to be a mom, a wife, and a woman. Who loves me unconditionally (and who'd have to based on the first paragraph!) and supports every effort and crazy idea I come up with. My loves ARE my life.

My Art.
I somehow stumbled upon this passion after my son was born. I had always had a love and admiration for photography and a style of photography that was "few and far between". I wanted someone to capture me laughing with my family, kissing my husband, and looking at my son in only the way a mother does. And, thus I started my journey. I went into this with the idea that surely I couldn't be the only one who wanted this style of photography. And, so it began. I reached out to friends and family to get them to be my guinea pigs and soon they began to refer me to people, and those people referred me and so on and so on... And, now I'm where I am today. I've started over in a new city and have been blessed, once again, with a loyal clientele who are gracious enough to refer me to their family and friends. I love what I do. And, I think that, above anything else, shows in my work.

My favorite image of recent:

Sunday, June 25, 2006

The Sweetest Story...

It seems that after every session, whether it be newborn, maternity, children, family or senior, I find myself saying, "That's DEFINITELY my favorite type of session to do..." And, in all honesty at that moment it probably is. But, there is absolutely nothing sweeter than having the pleasure of photographing a mom-to-be, then welcomed back to photograph their new little bundle. At that moment, THOSE are my favorite sessions to do...

This story was no different...Taunya and Eric were great to photograph by themselves. Although, Eric (like most of the hubbies out there...) was reluctant to get in front of the camera. I told him - just you wait...when I come back after this baby is born, you're going to be a bowl of mush and are going to ASK to be in pictures. Well, I won't say that he quite turned into a bowl of mush, or that he ASKED to be in pictures, but he certainly didn't mind this time. Babies change more ways than you can think is possible...

And, of course, Miss Taunya... She was something. Perfect pregnant curves and so willing to try anything. A photographers dream... "Comfortable at home" was what she wanted for her portraits...I think we captured it perfectly.

Then, we welcomed this sweet little package...all bundled nicely and cute as can be. Davis Derl entered Mom and Dad's lives on May 27th. Isn't he sweet...

Now, this little bugger just did NOT want to sleep during his session. That last shot was actually him blinking! I just got lucky... But, nonetheless, we had a great session and he was a trooper. 3 1/2 hours later, I let him have his life back, so he could cuddle in next to mom and not have a camera pointed in his face! I am so looking forward to continuing to photograph this little of my biggest rewards is seeing my littlest clients grow into mischievous toddlers. Bet mom and dad can hardly wait...

Friday, June 23, 2006

a little something different...

Inspiration... It can come in many forms - from people, or nature, or a great big ugly billboard... It's everywhere if you just open your eyes to it. Now, I'm not going to lie - sometimes things get a bit stale in this head of mine and I need to step out of the box and take a peek at what my peers are doing to ground me again and allow me to be creative myself.

So, in this installment, I want to show you some awesome photographers who do amazing work... And, if you happened upon my site, but don't live anywhere near me, check out these lovely ladies from all over the country. Some share a similar style, some don't...some have the same ideals and concepts as I do...some don't. But, nonetheless, they are all fabulous photographers and worth a peek!

...and am I crazy for posting other photographers on MY blog?? Heck no! I just know good photography when I see it... :-)

Tiffani Sunshine Photography
Oakstream Photography
Barefoot Photography
Angel Eyes by CJ
Through these Eyes
Jessica Hughes Photography
Sandy Landon Photography
Life Images by Laura

I PROMISE the next entry will be of that beautiful mommy (before AND after that little guy came into her life...)!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

The race is on...

Alrighty all you die-hard Sioux Falls fans! I've just finished my schedule and have the following session times available (these are rough estimates based on outside lighting...if you need to meet at 5:30, that can be arranged!):

Saturday, July 15th
9:00 am - BOOKED
5:00 pm - BOOKED

Monday, July 17th
9:00 am
5:00 pm - BOOKED

Tuesday, July 18th
9:00 am - BOOKED

These are for outdoor sessions only... If you would prefer an indoor session at your home, different times during the day can be arranged, but I still will only have availability for five sessions. No studio sessions will be offered. I will continue to update this throughout the week to show what has been booked and what is still available. If you have questions, you can always e-mail me ( or give me a jingle (847-970-8055). Thanks everyone!!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Finalist announced...

Well, I am head over heels myself this morning! I got notified that I have placed as finalist for two of my images for the month of May. I don't usually share this news with any of my clients, except the one that got recognized, but I never had a blog before!! The first picture is of Miss exquisitely beautiful pregnant woman that I had the pleasure of photographing. We got some amazing pictures, but this one was definitely one of my favorites. I will have more on Tauyna's sessions (yep...we moved from Belly to Baby!) featured later in the week, so stay tuned for that!

This second one touches my heart and makes
me smile every time I look at it... For those of
you that don't know, this is my beautiful little
boy...aka: guinea pig... I get to try all my wild and crazy ideas on him!! This was taken one afternoon out in our backyard while he was running around like crazy! I had to beg him to stand still for "just one shot!", but he still had to be goofy, thus this crazy face. I am a little biased, but isn't he about the cutest?!?!?

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Head over heels...

I have to say that this session was one of the most fun and hilarious sessions I have ever (E V E R!!) done! This couple was so much fun and had so much fun together... I just love it when you can look at a photo of two people and just KNOW how very in love they are...

So, Eddie & Karin, thank you for making that VERY hot and slightly uncomfortable day a little more enjoyable! You two are going to have a very happy life together...

Friday, June 16, 2006

Things that make you go hmmmmm...

Where do I find the time?? Ya got me, but somehow I do! I just finished up my new slideshow featuring some of my favorite images from past sessions, and using some heartfelt quotes on life, love and how quickly the days pass by...

Check it out at Click on the top box in the left side of the screen, or enter the password: essence to view this slideshow.

Something new for Essence...

After taking a long, hard look at Essence and how it was viewed in the public eye, I decided to revamp my entire "look", starting with my logo. You may have noticed that it's looking a little different these days! I wanted something new and fresh that really depicts what Essence is all about and shows a more artistic approach to photography. I think I've hit the nail on the head with this one!

I'm also excited to continue this transformation through my information and welcome packets, my website and also my packaging. I love now when clients tell me that they feel like they're opening a present when they get their order! That was just what I was hoping for...

To view my new logo and colors on my website, visit

It's about time!

Amen to that! We are finally (F I N A L L Y!!) taking a much needed break from the chaos of daily life... Come mid July - we're hittin' the road! As a result, I will be away from my computer and thus not checking my e-mails. The best way to reach me during this time will be via cell phone at 847.970.8055.

During this mini-vacation, I will be taking a limited number of sessions while in Sioux Falls. For those interested, please contact me right away! Space is extremely limited and sessions will be taken on a first come, first serve basis. More info to come on specific details such as dates and times available.