Friday, June 15, 2018

Senior Season is here

Senior Portraits are one of the most exciting things a high school senior will do. Some come in very excited to express who they are, in pictures, while others come in annoyed that they have to take another school photo they won’t buy.

That’s where I come in. It’s my job to make the student feel like having their picture taken, is an amazing experience and the outcome will be something both them and their parents will treasure forever. I can’t tell you how many Mommies come in and start crying when they see their baby taking senior portraits. Do you know how many times I’ve heard the phrase, “I can’t believe he’s a Senior already!”?

Here are a few examples of what we are doing….

+ Casual/Personality/Freestyle

+ Sports/Personality/Freestyle

+ Freestyle - using the Eyelighter (see the half moons in the eyes?)

+ Sports/Personality/Freestyle - using Split Lighting

+ Personality/Freestyle - using Monster lighting

+ Classic Portrait - using Short Loop lighting

Senior Portraits aren’t just “school photos”. They’re a statement. They are a culmination of who the student has become. They are the photos that will complete the entire series of school photos Moms and Dads around the world have been keeping since 1st grade. Allow them to have this. This is what they’ve been looking forward to for 12 years. Just let them have their moment.

There are so many different options for the type of photo to take and what kind of props to have. Let’s be real and honest about it here for a moment.

If the student plays a sport, have them take pictures with their equipment.
Are they in the band? Photos with instruments and letterman jackets are always popular.
Perhaps they’re just the school slut, and don’t have any extra curricular activities. I’d suggest maybe just taking Cap & Gown pictures, if that’s the case. I mean, there’s probably enough slutty photos of your kid floating around. Having them hanging in your house isn’t necessary.

In three days, Senior Season starts. We already have 50 students booked for day one, and it goes all the way through the beginning of August. Sessions take anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours, depending on how many different looks they’re wanting. Some students will have 20 pictures to choose from, while some will only have four. Keep in mind, the more outfits you bring, the more photo options you get.

Looking at seven different high schools over the next six weeks, each with 500+ students.

Bring. It. On.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018


I’ve needed a good vent session lately, and while SS is super awesome at listening to me vent, sometimes I just need to get it out when he’s not around. So here it is…

+ When your child comes home with a flyer for school pictures, read the damn thing. Us photographers don’t want to hear shit like, “Who do we make the check out to?” or “How much do the pictures cost?” or “Can we take sibling or group friend pictures?” because while we will politely point out the info on the flyer so you can see it, we will go back to our office and talk about you.

+ While we’re on the topic of school pictures, let me add that when it comes time to pay, just put the damn cash or check in the envelope provided. There’s a reason you’re given those. Don’t staple or tape the cash or check to the envelope. THAT IS RIDICULOUS! IT WILL RIP WHEN WE TRY TO TAKE IT OUT! DON’T BE STUPID. If you’re an irresponsible person and lose everything, including the envelope, don’t just give your money to the teacher. We won’t know who you are without your envelope. They’re coded for a reason.

+ Contrary to what you believe, not everyone on your friends list, wants to see all the drama your life has. In fact, I can tell you that most of us roll our eyes because you bring on the drama. You create it yourself. Your life would be meaningless if you didn’t have drama. (These people usually end up getting deleted from my list because I just can’t…. nevermind. You get the point.

+ I’m really not excited about talking to wedding vendors. I’v put a few requests for quotes out, but when they call me back, I don’t answer. I force it to go to voicemail because I HATE talking on the phone. And since I can’t relinquish control of some things to SS, I’m forced to deal with it. Grrrr. This is when a wedding planner would come in handy. Oh how I wish we had unlimited funds.

+ I have ONE MORE MONTH of child support to pay. So very fucking excited about this that I can’t express the amount of excitment in text. You’d have to see my face. A little annoyed that the money won’t be going into a savings account for us, but I don’t get to make those decisions.

+ When you’re driving, PUT YOUR FUCKING PHONE DOWN! When you’re driving, PUT THE FUCKING MASCARA, EYESHADOW, AND LIPSTICK DOWN! When you’re driving, STOP SHOVING FOOD INTO YOUR FACE! Do you know why?
Because I value my life. I don’t want to be killed in a car accident because you think the conversation on your phone is more important. Or checking your fucking Facebook status or Snapchat secrets.
Because I value my life. I don’t want to be killed in a car accident because you’re more concerned about the way your makeup looks. Cover the ugly before you leave the house.
Because I value my life. I don’t want to be killed in a car accident because you’re looking down at the sauce that dripped on your shirt while stuffing your face. Get to your location five minutes earlier and eat your food without putting someone else in harms way. Be fucking aware. It’s not too much to ask that you keep your eyes on the damn road. You didn’t do any of that with a driving instructor in the car when you got your license, so don’t do it any other time. Ugh. Fucking people!!

That last one specifically spoke about the people of Southern California. I don’t drive anywhere else at the moment, so can’t speak about Portland or Miami or Park City drivers. But just because I wasn’t speaking specifically about your city, don’t ignore what I said.

Okay, enough! I hate the feeling that doing these vent sessions gives me. I feel angry and annoyed and just ultimately disgusted at the blatent disregard for other people. 

The next post will be more positive, I promise. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Wedding Talk

Operation Wedding has begun. Although our date is still two plus years away, the planning and organizing of it all, needs to start. And this means first and foremost, coming up with a date so we can lock down a location and get a deposit made. I refuse to wait until the last three months to do it all. Absolutely refuse. And I’m pretty sure my Maid of Honor will kill me if I wait too long to do certain things. She’s already chomping at the bit to get things booked.

I’ve searched through website after website for locations. I’ve gone all the way from Santa Barbara to Temecula. Lots and lots of choices. Do you have a suggestion on location?

I have my colors picked out. SS doesn’t care anything about what color dresses my bridesmaids should wear, and certainly doesn’t care what color flowers are going to be on the tables, so, colors are all me. Thankfully, it was an easy choice and that decision is made. ✔ that off my To Do List.

Maid of Honor/Bridesmaids:
My MoH choice was simple. There was no question that I wanted my sister to stand next to me and keep me sane through this whole process. She’s already taken the reins on most things.
Bridesmaids will be a tougher decision. The wedding party is an important part of this. If I’m going to have wedding photos hanging around my house, I want it full of people that I love. Full of people that are amazingly awesome and want to be a part of our special day. People that I’ll want to look at all year long, for the rest of my life. So far, I only have one bridesmaid chosen. A friend that goes all the way back to 4th grade. She will also help keep me sane. I’d like to come up with at least one more, so fingers crossed.

We’ve talked about where we want to go, but nothing has been decided. I know where SS wants to go, and while I think it’s a super safe and good choice, I’m thinking I’d like to look at some additional options. If you have any suggestions, let me know. I’m open to options.

There is so much still to decide, but don’t worry, I’ll take you along with me the entire time. Can’t wait! So excited!

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

We’re Engaged

It’s finally happened. SS and I are engaged!

We’ve received such great feedback. Everyone is super happy for us, and it seems that people have been waiting a while for this to happen. I guess they wanted it just as bad. Heehee :)

We’ve been out to dinner with family to celebrate, and with my sister in town this weekend, there will be more celebrating.

We keep getting all the generic questions:
-Do you have a date set?
-Do you have a location picked out?
-What kind of dress are you thinking about?
-Who will be your Maid of Honor/Best Man?
-Etc., etc., etc.

The only thing I can say with certainty, is that I very much love SS and am so beyond grateful that he chose me. Even with all my quirks, he has chosen to spend the rest of his life with me. Me. Not anyone else. Do you know why? Because we’re awesome together and EVERYONE knows it. And if you don’t know it, learn it.

Monday, May 7, 2018

You only turn 40 once

This year, I’m turning 40.

It’s hard to believe that it’s been forty years since I was born. I think my parents might be a little shocked too. I mean, they were just young adults when I was born. I guess that means they’ve aged forty years too. But shhh! They certainly don’t want to hear it. Ha!

My 40th birthday party started out as a surprise, but apparently there were too many questions to answer, and they didn’t know how to get the answers without making the whole plan obvious. So, although it isn’t a surprise, it’s still a pretty awesome thing.

The second to last race of the 2018 NASCAR season is November 11th in Phoenix. There will be eight of us, spending the entire weekend at the racetrack. We’ve rented a very large home, big enough for all of us to stay together, and I promise that house is going to get a lot of use those several days. Three NASCAR races, over three days. I can’t imagine the kind of shenanigans that will take place, but I can guarantee that I’m going to let loose and allow my 40th birthday to be amazing. I mean, you only turn 40 once.

Racing, swimming, and bbqing. This will be a birthday to remember.