Archive for the ‘Personal’ Category
I can’t even tell you how excited and honored I am that I was asked to be a contributor to the new book, Everyday Storytellers, Volume 2 (available this Friday)! Seriously, the list of artists in this book is impressive and I feel a bit humbled to be among them! So what will you be seeing from me? Photos, of course! I’m offering some great tips and trips for capturing real emotion in your photos.
Here is a little bit more information about the book: Everyday Storyteller 2 is a brand new idea book offering more than 100 tips, tricks and techniques for scrapbooking. Go behind the scenes with 33 of your favorite memory keepers to see how they capture moments, tell stories and document their best memories. Sign up for the VIP list to be the first to know when the book is released and receive an exclusive discount.
Each book contributor participating in the blog hop is giving away an eBook copy of Everyday Storyteller 2. Use this entry link or click the graphic below to complete your entry form. You must enter by 11:59pm PDT on April 30, 2013 to be eligible. You may enter from each stop. Winners will be contacted directly as well as posted at everydaystoryteller.com on May 1, 2013.
Following is a list of contributors participating in this giveaway. Be sure to visit each one for your chance to win!
Don’t forget! Be sure to sign up for the VIP list so you can get an exclusive discount when the book is available! T-minus 4 days and counting!!
This month at I Heart Faces is the 2012 Best Face Photo Challenge. Oh wow, I had such a hard time deciding on this one. Just ONE favorite face of 2012? I think I spent WAY too much time looking through all the thousands of photos I have from the last year. But I finally settled on this one. It will forever be one of my favorites.
My little Kyler was asking me how to be a photographer so I said, “Well, you first try framing your photo with your fingers to see how it will look.” So after helping him position his fingers just right, this is the photo I ended up with. My little brown-eyed boy. Hopefully he really will follow in my photography footsteps.
I was seriously blown away by all the other entries for this photo challenge. Check them all out HERE!
Ryan had quite the eventful week this last week, which seemed appropriate that it all happened at the beginning of a fresh new year. Last week he lost his first tooth! He’s been waiting a long time for this momentous occasion, since most of his friends have lost their baby teeth long before now.
After examining it he said, “Mom, it looks like a tiny little piece of string cheese!”
Last week Ryan also started piano lessons for the very first time. He is SO excited and I actually have to ask him to STOP practicing! I know that enthusiasm won’t last forever, but I’ll take full advantage of it right now, and figure out down the road how to keep encouraging his passion for it.
Love my cute boy!
I’m excited to be linking up this week over at Simple As That’s Simple Things Sunday Photo link party! I’m always blown away by the photos that everyone posts there. There is seriously some amazing photo talent all over the world!
UPDATE: It’s been a few weeks since I updated my blog with this post about photography locations. Since then I’ve had floods of emails coming in about these locations, many wondering why I would give away my “secrets”. It’s because I believe in my ability to shoot at the same location as many other photographers and still create unique and creative photos that are notches above the norm. I had no problem sharing it with others, HOWEVER, I’ve removed the addresses and specific locations of these sites, because my clients felt that by sharing it with the world they weren’t getting a customized, unique location for their session. Many of these locations are no big secret, and can be found readily, but for the respect of my clients I’m only sharing the basic information on my blog.
With all of my fall sessions coming up I wanted to write a blog post about photography locations. There are lots of places all over Davis, Weber and Salt Lake counties that I like to go, so I thought I would share a few with you. Hopefully this will give my upcoming clients a chance to look at the options all in one place so they can decide which would be the best location for them.
RED BARN (Country look):
This is probably my most requested location, especially in the fall. There is a big red barn here with lots of weeds all around.
DOWNTOWN STREET (Urban look):
Within walking distance of the barn is a street with a really cool alleyway. It has old colored doors and awesome brick walls. Great choice for an urban shoot.
DOWNTOWN STREET (Urban Look):
Another fun urban location has little shops on one side of the street, and a beautiful green area in back of the shops. Across the street are also different-colored walls and doors.
DOWNTOWN STREET (Urban Look):
There are some great brick walls and old doors and alleyways here as well. This location can be a bit tricky though, because most of the cool walls face the south, which means bright sunlight. But if we can bring something to block the light, or go on a cloudy day, you’ll get some fun photos!
CITY CENTER (Urban look):
If you’re looking for something that’s urban, then this place is awesome. It’s right downtown and has lots of different options and colors.
CITY PARK (Urban/pretty look):
Another fun place is located downtown in a residential neighborhood. There are old columns, archways and buildings with cool colors, as well as a beautiful pond and bridge. Definitely a favorite for family photos and bridals.
COUNTRY FARM (Country look):
If you want something a little more country looking, there’s a huge farm. It does cost money to take pictures there ($10 or something). There are lots of farm animals, hay bales, old buildings, etc.
RECEPTION HOUSE (Country/pretty look):
This is one of my favorites! Be aware that they charge $35 to take photos there, but the grounds are spectacular. There’s old barns, an old car, lots of tall trees and beautiful light. It’s a reception center, so as long as there’s not a reception going on there it’s a good spot.
CITY PARK (Pretty look):
This spot is really nice and big. It’s a VERY popular spot for taking pictures. There are lots of stairs, trees, a beautiful bridge, cool columns and a large river and pond. It’s a leash-free dog-walking park, so you’ll see lots of furry pets there.
SCENIC TRAIL (Pretty look):
This a very long trail that has LOTS of options for taking photos. There are tons and tons of trees so it can get a little dark, especially if it’s an overcast day. It has VERY tall trees, an old train bridge, and animals like elk and deer in a fenced area. VERY pretty for the fall!
BIRD REFUGE (Simple, pretty look):
This is very basic and simple with lots of fields and weeds. There’s a long wooden path that leads to a cool building. This is a great option of you’re looking for a more simple, classic look.
BARN/TRACTOR (Country/pretty look):
This is a beautiful, but small spot for taking country photos. Lots of weeds, with a small barn and tractor.
MY PARENTS’ HOUSE (Pretty look):
One place that you will never see in anyone else’s photography is my parents’ house. They live on an acre lot up on the mountain. The yard is beautiful with lots of flowers, oak trees, large rocks, an arbor, and pathways. It’s one of my favorite places to go for both small and large families, as well as individual pictures.
There are also tons of other options. There is a big open field that I like to use, a fun long dirt driveway, an orchard, and a couple other fun places. Here is a small sampling of those places.
And there are actually lots more places if none of these are quite the look you’re going for. The best thing to do is decide the look you like the best (urban, country, pretty, etc.) and then we can decide on a location based on the number of people, the clothing you want to wear, the time of year, etc.
Have a great day!
Well, summer is over and school has started. It was a fun summer, but it’s nice to get back into a routine again. My kids were so bored.
And it will probably be a good thing for my blog too. Poor neglected thing.
The last few weeks have been spent playing and having fun. We’ve done Lagoon, Cherry Hill, parks, pools, and lots more. I love summer.
A few weeks ago (yes, it’s been that long since I’ve blogged!) Ryan also celebrated his birthday with a Mario party. I’ve had a few people ask about it, so I thought I’d post the details here, and how to make/buy the things I used.
It started with the invitation, of course. I had the idea to use an actual CD, made to look like a Mario Wii game, for the invitation. I just scanned in the Wii game we already have and then did some Photoshop magic!
The CD was tucked inside the question mark envelope. I’ll admit this little invitation took more of my time then it probably should have, but Ryan loved it so I was happy.
When all the little guests arrived (there were a total of FIFTEEN boys, including my own), they were greeted by Mario hanging on the front door.
I got two of these little plush backpacks at Target a couple of years ago for something like $4. I’ve been saving them for an occasion just such as this.
As they arrived they got to choose whether they wanted a Mario or Luigi hat to wear.
I absolutely love how these little hats turned out. I used the tutorial HERE and it was seriously awesome. Matt helped me do a lot of the cutting, and once all the pieces were cut they sewed together very quickly.
There were also a few little decorations set up on the table:
I got that poster on the wall (sorry for the glare) at Walmart for $5 and my boys were seriously obsessed with it. Kyler sat like this for about a full 5 minutes, just staring at it. Oh, and see that little turtle guy on the wall next to the poster? Those are those removable vinyl stickers (can be bought HERE), and there were probably a hundred different ones of all the Mario characters stuck to the walls, doors, and windows of our ENTIRE house. Can I just tell you how fun it was taking those down after the party? Ya…it wasn’t.
Once everyone was here, we started a rousing game of Mario Bingo. I downloaded the bingo cards HERE. I laminated the cards (actually I made Ryan laminate them all), and then we played with Apple Jacks, because they’re red and green for Mario and Luigi. It was actually a bigger hit than I had anticipated, and the boys loved eating the Apple Jacks when we were done.
After bingo we headed out back to play “Pin the Mustache on Mario and Luigi.” I found some images online of Mario and Luigi and used Photoshop to get rid of their mustaches (I did this very quickly–like minutes before the party–so don’t look too close). But if you want to use the images, be my guest. Just right click on the image and click “save as” to save it to your computer. I printed them at about 180%, so they printed onto two pages and then I laminated them together. It was a little pixelated at that size, but it wasn’t bad. Scroll down a bit to see pictures of what they looked like once they were laminated.
A lot of the kids were still a little too young to be spun in a circle, so we just blindfolded them and let them go and feel for the poster then pin on the mustache.
After a few minutes we realized that most of the kids could see under the the blindfold (and used it to their full advantage!), so we ended up just pulling their hats down over their eyes, which worked out great.
After that we all ran back inside to cool off a bit and open presents. When we were planning Ryan’s party, we kept trying to talk him into paring his list down of kids he wanted to invite. He said very matter-of-factly, “Mom. When you have lots of people come to your party you get lots of presents.” Very true. How can I argue with that? And he definitely cleaned up in the present department. Every single gift was so generous. (I LOVE this photo below. How stinkin’ cute is that sea of Mario and Luigi hats with Ryan right in the middle of it all?)
After presents, I scooted all the kids back outside again for cupcakes and ice cream. Once again, I’m here to admit that I SUCK at cakes and cupcakes. Seriously, I don’t know what my deal is. I need to desperately take a cake decorating class. Anyone wanna go with me? Anyway, I had big plans to make these cute little Mario mushroom cupcakes, but I could not for the life of me get my frosting to be red. I bought the bottle of food coloring that said very clearly “RED” on it, and it just kept turning brighter and brighter pink. Does someone have a secret they can share with me? So this is how they ended up looking:
Ugh. Totally not what I had pictured in my head, but whatever. I also saw something on Pinterest where you freeze Koolaid into ice cubes then put them in a clear drink and it’s supposed to look all cool. All it ended up doing was turning the whole drink pink. At least it matched the cupcakes, right?
The kids didn’t really care what it looked like though. As long as whatever they’re putting into their bodies had sugar in it, they were happy.
I’m not sure what was up with all the hand-raising. I think one of the kids started saying, “If you like the color blue, raise your hand,” and “if you have hair, raise your hand.” These kids crack me up.
After cupcakes and ice cream, I had the boys put on mustaches and snap a few pictures. Some of them were SO into it, others not so much. But I definitely had fun with it! I found an awesome sky-themed bulletin board paper at the party store. I wish it had been a bit bigger, but it still worked out fine.
I actually decided to make darling little mustaches on sticks for the boys to hold in pictures, but then totally forgot to use them! I was so proud of myself, though, because I discovered the EASIEST way ever to make them. Enter the scallop heart punch:
Simply punch a heart out of black cardstock:
Turn the heart upside down and use a pair of scissors to cut off the bottom two “bumps” of the heart in an arc shape:
And viola! You’ve got your mustache. Seriously, I whipped out about 30 of these bad boys in a matter of minutes!
After pictures we did a Mario treasure hunt. I seriously put this treasure hunt together in like 20 minutes. It’s not the greatest, but it was by FAR the highlight of the party. The kids loved it. In fact, they were running so fast from clue to clue that I didn’t have a chance to snap even one photo. Here are the clues I used:
The clues are kind of mixed around here, but basically they went on a little hunt from the mailbox, to the sandbox, to the shed, to the garden, to the grill and to the car. At the end there was a bag with each of their names on it and some goodies inside!
And finally, we whipped out the Mario pinata:
Note to self: Little boys show no mercy when it comes to whacking a pinata. If you want the game to last for awhile, triple-wrap the pinata with packing tape. There were so many kids with good swings that we actually ended up picking up the candy and stuffing it back in so a few more kids could have a turn!
And that’s it. Whew. It was so fun, and the next day a couple friends came back over and wanted to recreate all the activities with my boys, so I knew that it had to have been a hit.
Happy birthday Ry! We love you!