The beginning and the end ... a new chapter :)
Good Morning! :)
Yesterday marks the last day of school for me... of sorts. I finished my last 'known' set appointment for the Living Social Deal I offered last year... what an amazing task that was!! A lot of people have asked me when I started 'taking pictures,' etc... and to be honest there is no true answer to this. I am so grateful for my friends and family who have 'put up' with me during this last year or 2 of strong intrinsic desire to pursue my photography journey ... I could not have done it without my adorable 4 men in my life: Erik, Eli, Malachi & Baby, my siblings for helping me with the kids/etc during my shoots, and my friends and family for listening to me complain about my schedule, or my back, or my whatever else over the past 18 months or so ;)
That being said, I am so grateful to have done the Living Social special I offered last year. It was about 270 photo shoots (45 min) plus the travel, back and forth convos on setting up the shoot, editing, uploading, computer breaking awesomeness. If I wouldn't have taken on this project I would not be the level of a photographer I am now, I would not have the skill to access a photo shoot the way I do now and the ability: to get a baby to sleep
a high school senior to loosen up and smile, a 2 year old to give me their full range of emotions so I can be sure I capture all of their 'faces' for thier loving (tired) parents... a mature woman to get mostly naked in front of me so I can get beautiful shots of her body for her confidence, pleasure, or partner.
There is so much more to taking a good picture than just an understanding of f-stop, aperature or exposure. It is the ability to make people feel comfortable and expressive to get them to feel close to a stranger with a camera 8 inches from their face to get that perfect shot. I've always been the 'go big or go home' mentality and while I didn't mean to take on the volume that I did over the past year - the inner growth I have sustained while shooting every other day for a year straight almost has proven priceless to me. That being said - to those shoots that I did early on... when I wasn't as confident as I feel lately I apologize... I know that we have had many laughs along my journey ~ some of my favorites include:
falling in the fountain at WWU
when the pimp brought his 'pimpee' to get her boudior photos taken, or being able to photograph a c-section of a now amazing friend.
Whenever people ask me when I started to take pictures I pause... I am not sure of whether to say it was when I was my high school annual editor during my junior and senior year - or whether it was sitting next to Clifford, our sweet old man wheelchair bound friend when I was a child take pics of my older sister Flossie all the time...
or whether it was when I would have my pictures taken by other photographers
which is really one of the best family dates you can have in my opinion ;) (with the right photographer)...
to sum up my response to them I typically let them know how many adorable siblings I have (11 originally plus all of our extended siblings who would live with us during our childhood) and that it has ALWAYS been important for me to photographically document life of all stages. I think it is the sum of the chapters of a persons life and I LOVE the fact of our now digital world that we are able to take and store so many priceless moments.
The other common question I hear alot is what my favorite 'type' of photography. If you look at my portfolio here on Zenfolio you'll see I have LOTS of different types of uses for my camera; my favorite is boudoir. I will never forget the moment my sweet sister Caroline suggested that I shoot boudoir.
I had NO idea what the heck she was talking about and I didn't fully appreciate the reason for this odd word meaning 'bedroom pictures' in french. With the evolution of technology, sexting, texting, etc. I think the amount of socially accepted sexuality between couples has grown exponentially from our parents generation.
Like most of American's I have been divorced more times than I'd like (I wish this answer was: 1). During my inner growth of understand my own sexuality I have learned that it is ok to be confident with yourself and your body. I feel that true beauty results from confidence and one of the reasons I am confident is because I accept myself, and if others don't accept me - it's ok. I am not a bad person because of that. However, if the reasons that others don't accept me is something I can adjust or correct then I will try to do that as long as it will only positively affect me.
When I shoot a woman it is so fun because what woman doesn't love pretty lacy or silky pieces of fabric next to their skin. I typically work with women who have gotten their hair all pretty, their makeup all perfect and their nails done. The confidence in that woman is amazing and my ability to make someone smile or give me a series of emotions is pretty neat. For that reason the next chapter of my life in photography will be this summer, with one of my oldest best friends Nellie.
We are going to throw parties for women... like birthday, bachelorette parties, etc... I am developing the price sheet for it now but some of the ideas I have now are this: every party includes a 'boudoir' shoot for the guest of honor (bride, bday girl, divorcee, etc...).
Each party will include a selection of: hor dourves, cocktails, makeup artistry, hair stylists, VIP access to Seattle and Bellevue's best night life and more.
I plan on doing one party a week thru the summer of 2012 ... and the director of operations of Lifestyles Photography (sweet Kate) will be booking the parties and acting as a concierge for the event. If you'd be interested in booking one shoot her an email with your date in mind and you can see if we can work with your group! :) Kate's email address is: email@example.com
Pattie Ashton Cornute(non-registered)
CONGRATULATIONS!!! How great to read your blog and hear all about your wonderful photography adventures; with such amazing photos you will have a way to reflect every step of it. I wish you continued success in your new adventure, it sounds like a lot of fun (for you and your clients).
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