My Office Sanctuary

When we first moved in to our new house in May, our office furniture was kind of thrown into its place and with everything else going on, it really hasn’t been touched since. So it’s look like this for the last 5 months:

office-boring

Boring. Sad. Depressing. Something needed to be done.

These past 2-3 months have been so incredibly busy but wonderful for my budding photography hobby and I’ve been clocking many, many hours at this desk every night, trying to keep up with my own life. Last weekend my husband went out and splurged on me, purchasing us a new MacBook laptop. It’s such a sleek, fast, beautiful piece of machinery and it motivated me to get my “space” together. I actually already owned many of the things I am now using in my office, so it was just a matter of taking some time to get myself organized – and I love the way it turned out!

A couple of my favorite things: I created a Kate Spade-inspired scripture print and used a frame I already owned = a completely free wall print. I snagged the globe from Goodwill for $0.50 last winter and it’s sat in a box since then and I was excited to finally find a place for it. I also found a sugar jar on sale at Target for $3 with a cute tiny chalkboard label on it that I am using as a pencil holder. And of course, my favorite Greenroom notebooks that I take on every shoot with me.

Pretty, comfy, organized and inspiring 🙂

We also changed out the lighting in this room. As a general rule, our house had awful lighting in it. Everything was straight from 1980 and hadn’t been touched in 35 years. Burnt orange ceiling fans and old, dated fixtures. So it’s something we’ve slowly replaced throughout the house and it’s amazing what a HUGE difference good lighting makes in a room – it instantly looks modern and brand new! Our office used to be the old dining room but we converted another space in our home for that so this gaudy gold chandelier had to go. My bruised head thanks my husband for finally changing it out – we’ve bumped it so many time and we’ve sworn all summer it needed to go.

Bon voyage, gaudy 1980’s light with too many bulbs!

lighting-office

Birth Photography: Baby Avery

I recently did a newborn birth photography session with sweet baby Avery. Unfortunately, the hospital where she was delivered at did not allow photography in the delivery room – something every mother should ask ahead of time before scheduling with me!

Luckily, I was able to visit with her when she was just a couple of hours old to take some “After Birth” photographs that her parents will cherish for the rest of her life. Capturing moments like meeting the grandparents and her big sisters for the first time or her first feeding with mama are moments you can never get back and I am so honored to play this role for a growing family. After Birth sessions are becoming increasingly more popular and I got her at the perfect “awake” time where she was alert and mostly happy.

Such a little sweetheart!

Senior Portraits: Class of 2013

I recently did a Senior Portrait photoshoot with Aaron, who is graduating this spring. We went to the gardens at the local Metroparks in late April and luckily nature was just starting to turn green for us. To bring some personality into his shoot, he brought along his favorite beanie hat, which turned out to be my favorite shots! Here are just a few of the outtakes from the day…

My New Prime Lens

With the often dim, strange lighting in hospitals, I have come to realize that my 18-55mm kit lens that came with my Nikon camera won’t quite do the job in getting the sharp, crisp photographs I obviously want. Without using a tripod or a flash (which I’m not a fan of), I know I didn’t have many other choices. And with it’s range and speed, the 55-200mm lens my husband bought me also wouldn’t be the right fit. So I invested in a new 35mm f/1.8 prime lens tonight for a reasonable cost and with the unpredictability of babies, I’m just glad I got it in time!

Reasons for Going Prime:

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Even though most people tend to want the flexibility of a zoom, the highest quality images typically come from prime lenses. There is a “sweet spot” in every lens, typically somewhere in the middle where everything is just right to capture the best possible image quality. With a prime lens which doesn’t zoom, it’s basically always on that sweet spot.

The other huge advantage of a prime lens is they tend to collect much more light while the shutter is open, which was a essential factor in my decision. This allows for faster shutter speeds, giving me the flexibility of shooting in lower light situations. I was debating between the 35mm and 50mm lens and eventually decided on the 35mm because it provides a more “normal” angle of view and in a small hospital room, this length will allow me to capture more of the space without having to back up into a corner every time I take a photograph. The only draw-back is the focus has to be spot-on with the large f/1.8 aperture because of the very shallow depth-of-field. but that also means it’s easier and better at blurring the background.

Now comes the fun part…playing with my new toy!

My First Official Photoshoot!

I recently did my first professional photoshoot with one of my good friends, Erica Traster Yoga, whom I’ve been raving about!  Being my first official photoshoot, I was naturally nervous but working with my beautiful friend made my job that much easier! We talked about the vision she was looking for before we started and our goal was to mix modern and city life. We headed into Cleveland to 4th Street and found some really cool backgrounds to capture an urban look and feel to her images.

Here are a few of my favorite photographs we took…I personally think they turned out fantastic!

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FAVA Holiday Art Show 2012

Today was the day – the opening of the “Members’ Holiday Show 2012” with FAVA! Being my first time in a real exhibition, I had no idea what to expect so naturally I was nervous. What if my photographs were awful in comparison to others? Or weren’t priced correctly? Or the wrong things were said my artist bio? Walking in there this afternoon, I felt like I stuck out like a sore thumb and there was a neon sign flashing over my head that said “newbie.”

But once I walked into the gallery, I felt immediately at ease. There were so many welcoming people who came up to talk and the other artists’ works were fantastic! Taking years of art classes, I should have known better than trying to compare my pieces with others because nobody works the same way – that is the beauty of art!

There ended up being 67 different members who exhibited in this show and the pieces ranged from photography, paintings and textiles to jewelry, sculpture and mixed media pieces. Here are a few snapshot from the Opening Reception. A special thank you to my family and friends who came and supported me today – it meant the world to me to have you there!

My Artist Bio: