Saturday, September 29, 2012

Sisterhood of the Traveling Weddings

I pulled a twofer this weekend, a first time for me. Two weddings, one weekend. I stood in my best friend's wedding in Tennessee (well she let us sit, actually, which was awesome) on Saturday evening, and then photographed my cousin's wedding near Atlanta the very next day! Thank God for adrenaline and dancing :)

My best friend, Shea, has 2 sisters and my cousin, Tiffany, has 3. I couldn't help but notice how special the bond was between all of these beautiful women and how much more meaning their sisterhood seemed to bring to the BIG day. So many girls! So much emotion!   :)

These are some snapshots I loved: Shea, Sara, and Lindsey and their sister slumber party the night before. The 3 of them trotting around wedding morning in their matching monogrammed oxfords. Shea giving her sisters their wedding gift out on the porch swing and crying together (a ring with 3 small bands all connected). Then laughing at themselves crying.  All of us eavesdroppers copying them and doing the same!  The way they can be serious and look like super models and then turn around and be totally goofy and ridiculous together, whether it's acting out the Elephant Love Medley from Moulin Rouge or reading Shea's journal in their wedding toast to everyone...

And then there's Tiffany and her funky bunch of sisters. They have all been through so much together and it's so evident. When it comes to being there for each other, there is no question. No one's going anywhere and everyone has everyone else's back. And when they're upset with each other, it doesn't last ... even if it was one of your sisters that forgot to bring the wedding ring to the ceremony for you to put on your groom!

The specialness of the sisterhood was just something that lingered in my mind throughout the weekend and into the rest of this week. I've had the privilege of knowing all of these people for many years, and I know their bond hasn't always been like this. When you're younger, things like borrowed clothes and messy bathrooms can keep you from realizing how much you really enjoy and care about a person. Maybe that's why it was all so special to me – to see the growth and beauty that comes with age, to see how much we learn to care about things that matter as time goes on. I hope I will do the same. And I wish I'd grown up with sisters like that!

L: Farm of wedding festivities // Middle: Shea giving sister gifts // R: sisters giving toast {all taken with iPhone 4s}

Sisters and Monogramming... like Peanut Butter and Jelly. 
Tiffany + Sisters

Love this one of the funky bunch.

"Oops... Sorry about that ring thing..."

Friday, August 17, 2012

Nothing Says SENIOR PHOTOS like a Code 13

Senior photo shoots remain one of my favorite things to do, and this session with Sarah just reminded me why. First of all, high schoolers are just plain awesome. Especially the senior variety of high schooler, because they know it's near the end! They also are just full of life and fun to be around, which is exactly how I would describe this beauty here. Sarah was so natural in front of that camera; the girl does NOT take a bad picture. You would've guessed she'd done more modeling than she had diving at soccer balls, which is another thing I love about high schoolers: they're surprising!

Sarah also has this great sense of humor, which made for a good time when things got chaotic around us at Helen Hunt Falls. We're just minding our own business, trying to take pictures, change clothes (her), change lenses (me), and capture the moments... when all of a sudden, I see this kinda shady character of a man trying to pry open the windows that are nailed shut (always have been, as long as I've been going to the Falls) on the little hut there. Then he starts wandering our way... asking for a water bottle. I give him an almost empty one from my car. He thanks me repeatedly, then starts yelling "And I'm stuck here, and it's YOUR FAULT" while pointing at another shady character, his lady friend sitting a few feet away. He continues to yell, while we duck behind the hut into the nice greenery for some more shots. As she's sitting there, we continue to hear the shady characters continue on into a full blown domestic dispute, while on the other side of us a family (?) of about 12 people walk up and start rehearsing for a lesbian wedding. The officiant was probably my favorite, with his braided gray ponytail yelling about how he needed to stand in a certain spot cause it was his "good side." At this point, Sarah and I have lost it laughing, but I think her mom was genuinely ready to call the cops in for the disturbance from our shady friends. "They call this a Code 13 at my work," she said, "and if I had cell phone service I think I'd let someone know!"

But I shot on, cause that's what a good photographer does :)
And Sarah looks great, cause, well... like I mentioned before, she doesn't take bad photos. And when there's a great story to go with your great photos, well... you can't beat that with a stick!

(to see the entire shoot, just click away on this  

Picture all the craziness right about here!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Have you ever been kicked out of church? (me neither)

I just wanted to tell this quick story of what happened for 5 minutes one day when I was in Italy, because it was one of the greatest 5 minutes of my trip! (and a lot can happen in 5 minutes in Europe)

I was in Verona with two Italian friends, and Fabiano loves to go in every church we pass by (keep in mind Italy has Catholic churches like Tennessee has Baptist ones, so this was quickly becoming a very involved pasttime). We went into this particular one, and my devout Catholic Italian friends did their genuflect routine as they entered the church (the whole bow down, cross themselves, throw in a kiss at some point thing). Normally, I just walk in like a normal person, since I'm not Catholic and don't feel the need to pretend about it.

But this time was different.

I watched my friends do their bit like usual as we walked in and was prepared to just do my "hey I'm a Protestant" thing, but I glanced to my left and saw that the priest was a foot in front of me! Now, I'm not scared of priests or anything, but for some reason I immediately started to have a mini panic, thinking "Oh no, he's right there and I'm with these people who just genuflected and I don't know how it works but he probably expects me to do it, too, and will think I'm a bad person if I don't and I'm not a bad person and I really do like Jesus, so I should try!" So, before I knew it, I was taking a stab at remembering the order of everything, crossing myself (I'm pretty great at this one, thanks to my dear Catholic roommate) and doing an unsure little half bow... the kissing part was totally lost on me. But, I think perhaps it's enough.

And then the priest comes over and starts speaking to me, in Italian of course, and making gestures towards the door. He wants me to leave, I think! I am a failure at genuflecting and he wants me to exit the premises. This is unfortunate! So, I get very flustered and summon for my other friend, trying to tell her what I think he said. "Oh no," she says, "He only wants to know if it's still raining outside."

Whoops :)  We spoke with him for a while after, too. Fabiano told him I was from Colorado, and he asked to give me a blessing, which I totally accepted and felt awesome about. Turns out he's 93 years old! What a stud! So we took pictures, chatted for a bit– well, they chatted for a bit–and then we left.

Moral of the story?  Priests are nice people. Chances are they don't want you to leave   :)

Exterior: the church entrance is on the right.

Pardon my awkward pose- not used to having photos made with priests. (but check out the shades!!)

Fabi getting the scoop.

Right outside the church. Same exact shot–2 different focal points.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

It's Time to Be a Cool Kid

I am so privileged to be the staff photographer for COPPeR. The events I get to photograph for them are some of my most favorite memories, and they always remind me how much I LOVE MY JOB! This event was no different, of course. This was a press conference held for COPPeR to announce the arrival of the Peak Arts Card at Kirkpatrick Bank in downtown COS. This is an ingenious idea for our community–for the extremely reasonable price of $60, you can make a difference in the arts community in Colorado Springs and get discounts at all kinds of places. These kinds of places include but aren't limited to: Nosh (best sweet potato fries and sangrias in the country; believe me, I've tested it!), Jose Muldoon's, COS Youth Symphony, COS Philharmonic performances, Imagination Celebration (a fabulous organization I used to work for), Opera Theater of the Rockies performances, Tri-Lakes Center for the Arts, and UCCS Theatreworks. What a treat for all! COPPeR sincerely does such incredible things for our artist community here in Colorado Springs, and this is just another shining example! I hope if you live in this area you'll consider purchasing one of these lovely Peak Arts Cards. Did I mention they're tax deductible? Well, lucky day for you–they are! Can't take it anymore and gotta get one? Go to this website right here, and you can be one of the cool kids:

The Beautiful ladies of COPPeR

Serenades in the bank are ALWAYS a good idea!

This little piggy bought a Peak Arts Card!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Walkin' in a Winter Wonderland

Now I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Eagle Lake is beautiful at all times. This photo shoot took place at Eagle Lake Camp, which is the main reason I moved to Colorado in the first place. Although, I'm used to seeing it with piercing blue skies, killer sunshine, green aspens that sound like they're clapping when the wind rolls through, and kids in shorts running around everywhere having the time of their lives. But I like this Eagle Lake, too...

Peaceful. Serene. Quiet. Magical. Not to mention the family I was asked to photograph are some of the most hardcore people I know! Lynn and Sharon live up at camp year round and keep the place running. Lynn can operate backhoes, chainsaws, and tractors, not to mention he can kill bears (and probably even fictional wild animals) with only a bow & arrow. Some say he was born with it; most say he's actually Chuck Norris. But at any rate, it was a special day (snowstorm ensuing and all!) with a very special family, and I was honored to be part of this special day! Thanks to Sharon for supplying the hot cider during this event :) 

The couple that started it all!
Did someone say Narnia?

David, my fearless (and cold!) new intern and a glimpse at how deep that snow was.

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