Posts tagged portraits
Portland in November Days 1-3: A Little Bit of Everything

I finished up what turned out to be one of the best days I’d had in a good while with a delicious meal at Thai Peacock. Noodles are good in all circumstances, but perfectly cooked Pad Thai with crispy trout after a very long day of photography really hit the spot. As I took the bus back to the house, I reflected once again on what an amazing journey it’s been: from that first feeling that Portland was the place to start, to this day capturing the love of two people I would never have gotten to be friends with had I not taken the initial plunge. Sometimes things happen slower than you want them to, but now that I’m on the other side enjoying the fruits of all my hard work, I can see that every bit of it was worth it for a day like this.

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Washington DC: Finding Independence

Now, perhaps driving 7.5 hours somewhere by yourself doesn’t sound like an exciting adventure. And, truth be told, there wasn’t much exciting about that part - or any of the 20 something hours I spent driving this weekend between the road trip, the tours and the photoshoots. But that was exactly the point. To be able to get in my little car and drive off to another state where I know only a handful of people, to schedule networking meetings and photoshoots with strangers, to photograph for another business (i.e. to profit while traveling) and to do all of this on my own. This is what the new me looks like. I’ve been reaching for this person for a very long time (my social media presence often projected this “dream person”) and after enjoying every second of my solo journey this weekend, I think I’ve finally found her.

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Asheville Branding Session || Just Bloom Together || Asheville Wedding Coach and Stylist

The objective of her branding photos was threefold: to show the active and nature-loving lifestyle that's as much a part of Emmaleigh as her fiery red hair, to show her styling expertise and enthusiasm for conveying each client's personality through their clothing and accessories, and to show the virtual assistant side of her business where she focuses on helping other businesses grow. 

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London Portrait Session || Meadow + Theo's Couples Portraits in the English Countryside

Next to eating anything and everything, my favorite thing to do while abroad is photograph with fun people, especially if beautiful fields of flowers are involved! When Erin and I were planning our trip to London, I ran through my list of people I knew there and, as it happened, one of my former couples, Meadow and Theo, were now living in Leicester! We were originally supposed to meet and ride up with them to the Peak District, but since Erin and I managed to get on the train going in the wrong direction, we didn't have quite the amount of time we'd originally planned. I'm already scheming to go up there next time, though!

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Asheville Family Portraits || Hazel's Newborn Session

Somehow, this sweet girl turns 1 this month which means I'm doing a little throwback to our photoshoot from last year. I don't frequently do newborn sessions, but after this one, I've totally fallen in love with the genre! 

As with all of my shoots, I prefer to take the "lifestyle" approach to newborn photoshoots as it's not only easier on both child and parents, but better captures what life is really like during these precious first couple weeks. After all, to me, the joy in and importance of having infant photos made is having the ability to look back years later when they're older and remember exactly what life was like as new parents. 

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Oak Ridge, Tennessee || Robyn's Senior Portraits

Back in April, I had the opportunity to photograph for Robyn, a senior captain on the Oak Ridge High School cross country team and also my brother's girlfriend. For her graduation photos, we wanted to get a wide range of image that captured both her personality and her accomplishments, as well as the beauty of Oak Ridge, so we ended up bouncing to three different locations that evening! 

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Iceland Destination Photoshoot || Erin's Travel Portrait Session

In writing these posts about Erin's portrait sessions while we were abroad earlier this month, I went a bit backwards since we actually went to Iceland first. This isn't because I enjoyed London more; on the contrary, if given the choice between photographing a classy engagement session in London and an adventure elopement in Iceland, I would undoubtedly choose the latter. And that is precisely the reason. 

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London Destination Photoshoot || Erin's Travel Portrait Session

The most challenging aspect of documenting a vacation isn't watching for the moments or framing the scene, it is (by far) working with the available light even at 2pm on a bright and sunny day. However, this is precisely why I enjoy this type of session! Working in countless less-than-ideal lighting conditions in my wedding work has instilled in me a deep appreciation for harsh lighting, particularly in making use of natural spotlights to dramatically highlight my subjects' face and little else. Although, occasionally, a bright backlight leaving the face in shadow is equally as pleasing to me, at least when my subject is running through a field of wildflowers. 

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London Day 1: Sightseeing and Sunshine

We successfully began our first morning in London by completely sleeping through it, awaking after noon. To shed our remaining layer of sleepiness, we stepped out into the warm, British sunshine, picked a direction, and set off on our first international run. Since I've only run once in the past 5 months I can't say it was terribly pleasant, but getting to finally stretch our legs while simultaneously exploring our neighborhood was enjoyable.

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NYC Day 2: New Friends

I'd planned to get up around sunrise to run (and then go back to sleep!) but either my alarm didn't go off or I turned it off in my sleep - neither option would surprise me - so I woke up around 11 instead and quickly got ready for my photoshoots. After I'd posted my images from yesterday's shoot with Denise in the GLT NYC group, several people messaged me interested in photos, so while my only plan for the day had been meeting with one of my college classmates for lunch, I ended up adding three shoots to the mix! 

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NYC Day 1: No Plans

As much as I have the travel bug to go anywhere and everywhere, I just can't stop coming back to NYC. This particular trip is a solo affair, focusing on honing my creative eye to further clarify my visual voice. Once I arrived in Midtown, I grabbed my Vivitar and set off in search of food and photos. While the emphasis of our February visit was to try any and all foods, this time I simply grabbed a sandwich and coffee at the Cambodian restaurant Num Pang Kitchen (talk about tasty!) and hit the streets again. This won't be a long blog post because in all honesty, I didn't really DO anything other than take photos, but I'm totally ok with that.

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Portland Family Session + Birthday Celebration

Since they hadn't gotten photos with the whole family together in quite a long time, we started the gorgeous sunlit evening with some group portraits out in front of the house - first with just Sue and her daughters, then with spouses as well. Not only did their outfit colors all coordinate with each other (and the house!), but they had so many perfect seating spots for portraits - especially the wooden swing - so I felt like the yard was made just to be a photographer's playground. 

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Jake's Senior Photos || Oak Ridge High School

Photographing for high school boys who don't particularly like smiling for the camera can be an interesting experience. But, when it's your brother in front of the camera and you know how to pull forth that genuine smile, it can be a lot of fun! By the way, my go-to trick is "Ok, now pretend your girlfriend is walking up and smile for the camera like you'd smile at her." Seriously, works every time. 

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2018 Goals

Each year, right around Christmas, I evaluate my goals from the ending year and then write out my goals for the coming year. I them let them sit for a few weeks while I evaluate other metrics - making sure that these are the goals that really resonate - and eventually come back to them during the first week of the new year to write this blog post. This year I've been so busy that I'm just now getting to it!

Nonetheless, I'm more than a little excited about this coming year. While each of the past 6 years has brought be a step closer to my ultimate career goals, this coming year is the first one where I feel like I'm really on the right track towards doing exactly what I want to be doing. It took me a while to figure out that exact intersection where my skills, enthusiasm for the work and ability to help people all coincide to create my "calling", but I'm only 24 so it's hard to complain. So, without further ado, here are my intended plans for 2018!

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Ireland Day 1: Worth the Wait

Our very first introduction to the country was landing on a runway fenced in to keep out the cows not 20 feet away. That was a new one for me! We made a beeline for the hotel where Dad and Jake stayed (and Jake slept for the next 6 hours until dinner) and I set off in search of transportation to my shoot an hour away. I'd worried most about the flight delay because I'd scheduled a family shoot for Sunday late morning, thinking that would give me plenty of time to adjust and get my bearings, but having to learn on the fly was just as well.

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Oak Ridge High School Senior Photos

One of my very favorite things about owning a business is getting to give back to others whenever possible. Otherwise, what's the point?! So when my dad approached me to see if I wanted to work on a project at my alma mater, Oak Ridge High School, I immediately accepted. His idea was to take a few senior photos for a handful of students who had never had their photo professionally taken and then give them a couple prints to commemorate this time for them. I loved the original idea because I believe everyone deserves not only to have a tangible photograph of themselves, but also to be the focus of attention for even just a few minutes. 

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The Dolon's Biltmore Maternity Session

As it turned out, Lauren and Chris were the perfect couple for me to make my entré into the maternity world! Down-to-earth, open for whatever poses I wanted to try and completely comfortable with each other and the camera. Though it was the "dead of winter" in theory, we actually had a pleasant 50 degree morning with clear mountain views and a lingering sunrise. This provided the perfect backdrop for our first set of images on the overlook beside the house. I like to start each session shooting from a distance to ease my subjects into the idea of being the stars of the show and the Biltmore always provides beautiful architectural and natural details to frame these wide shots. 

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Portland: The Rest

While I try to stay pretty on top of my blogging and social media, there is certainly something to be said for putting away the technology (except my camera, obviously!) and enjoying the moments, so that's what I did for the rest of my Portland trip. Though I arrive back in Asheville a couple days ago and am now headed to Columbia, SC to shoot the first round of the women's NCAA tournament, I had too much fun in Portland not to share. 

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