Feb 8 2017

back in black.

//oh hi! this really long blog break is brought to you by my getting used to having two small children in my house.//

If you follow me on social media, you may have noticed a lack of colour in my photos lately.  What started as a coincidence has turned in to a personal project of sorts for me.  I’ve started working on perfecting my black and white edit, as well as documenting life in a more natural real way. This has led me to focus a lot on light and paying more attention to how the light is in the house at any given time during the day.  I feel like I’ve always struggled with getting light “just right” in my photos–particularly indoors.  Not enough that it’s a problem, but enough that I felt like a lot of the time my photos lacked a certain quality that I wanted.  If the room wasn’t bright I would discount it and not take pictures, or I would fail to pay attention enough and compensate in my edits.

I feel like black and white really highlights the use of light in a photo.  In order for black and white to be effective in story telling, there needs to be definition and contrast to draw attention to the subject.  Otherwise, why do black and white?

Anyway…I’ve always been a little picky about my black and white, so it felt fitting that I focused more in perfecting it.  Here’s a little glimpse into our year so far.


Nov 29 2014


A few years ago, Dave and I took a trip over New Years Eve to Banff and Lake Louise.  It has remained one of my most favourite vacations ever.  Seriously, this is probably one of the most beautifully breathtaking places in the world.  With some hints of snowfall in the next week, I find myself longing for a lovely wintery vacation in the Rocky Mountains.  These photos were are film, almost all taken on my Canon FTb.  All are with Kodak Gold 200 on a 35mm, and the last two are on a Pentax K1000, 28mm, Kodacolor VR-G 100, Expired 1989 film.  We are really hoping to make this a regular trip once our family is a little older.  I love this place.

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Sep 21 2014

We Love Lucy: A first Birthday Party

The first birthday has come and gone!  We are very thankful (that it has come and gone) but also for the many people that came and celebrated with us.  I always said that birthday parties would be small and simple but we really felt in this case we needed to do something special to thank all the people that have helped us in the last year.  What better way to thank people, than to load them up with homemade sugary treats?  If there’s one domestic ability that I am confident in, it’s my ability to make fabulous desserts, so a dessert party was obvious.  Since Lucy basically still doesn’t eat, I wasn’t worried about really making things that were baby friendly because she would just throw them on the ground anyway!

My “theme” (if you can call it that) started from a print that I made that is in Lucy’s bedroom that says “I love Lucy”.  We used the hashtag “we love lucy” when instagramming when she was first born and going through hospital stuff, although I stopped because a million other people used it too. Because Lucy is also a heart baby, I loved the idea of incorporating hearts into it.  I picked a colour palette of pink, red and gold (although the pink, as per usual, took over).

The weather was perfect–if not maybe a touch too warm for myself and my porcelain daughter.  But everyone else seemed to really enjoy it.

In all, it was pretty budget friendly since everything was handmade with a lot of supplies from the dollar store.

I drew and cut out the letters that made the “We Love Lucy” sign out of glitter vinyl, and they were strung together with fishing wire.  The streamer backdrop was just draped and stapled over twine.  The pom-poms were made out of dollar store tissue paper (lots of tutorials on Pinterest for that).

The birthday cake I was extra proud of.  I’ve always loved baking cakes, but decorating cakes has always been a bit of a mystery.  I always stick with simple decoration to save me from disaster!  This was a four layer red to white velvet ombre cake.  For the heart I used a cookie cutter as a stencil and put sprinkles on it.  The pendant banner was a quick project and is just craft paper and twine.

(…and there was only one piece left, so that’s a good sign!)

The cupcakes were made by my mom and decorated by me.  They were vanilla with raspberry filling, or lemon filling.  I made the heart picks myself out of glitter vinyl.  Oh, and PS: that “make your own glitter sprinkles” DIY that is so popular on Pinterest, doesn’t work.  It just looks like coloured sugar.  Oh well.

Lucy’s “smash cake” was just simply a box cake that I didn’t care about because I knew that she would either A) throw it on the ground or B) not even want to touch it.  It was mainly so that we could put something in front of her while we sang.  I made the “1″ pick myself out of glitter vinyl.

Homemade sugar cookies with royal icing.

(Left) Homemade Chocolate Raspberry Truffles (made by my mom) and (center) homemade red velvet cookies.

Chocolate dipped pretzels!  A Pinterest win!! So easy and pretty too!

Dave’s contribution to the food was sweet and salty kettle corn that we served in cupcake cups.  A favourite in our household.


I bought inexpensive flowers (carnations and baby’s breath), and used the ever popular and cheap mason jars for vases.  I sprayed a bunch of them gold and it looked really sharp!

I set out a table for gifts with a picture that I made of Lucy with her  milestones.  Her first pair of tiny Minimocs are there, with a rag doll that I made her for Christmas (that has a matching dress that I made to what she was wearing that day)

We planned on having a lot more balloons, but they just started exploding all over the place!  We think it’s because they were dollar store balloons, plus it was warm.

I hung up pictures from the last year with clothespins that I put sparkly red hearts on.  An easy and simple project.

Here’s Lucy getting “Happy Birthday” sung to her!  She was weirded out.

That icing on her face was my doing.  I really wanted her to at least try!

Eventually, once the crowd disappeared she touched the cake.

…but didn’t like how that felt.

Trying out her new rocking horse from mommy and daddy!  It was scary at first, but then when no one was looking she got in to it.

A card with animals on it!  Her favourite!

Her tambourine, which is a new favourite.  I have no problem with that kind of sound!  As long as it promotes creativity and isn’t a loop of digital sounding kids music I’m happy.

We asked for books for her birthday, and we sure got a good haul!  I’m so happy that we received such lovely gifts for her.

Testing the rocking horse when the crowd stopped paying attention.

Lucy’s dress was designed and made by me a few months ago–for Easter, actually!  But it was too big and too cold for her to really wear it.  I did have to let the elastic in the waistband out a bit for her to wear it for her birthday, but other than that it fit her really well.

And that’s it!  Wow!  I feel like this is as much as I would post about a wedding.  We are definitely exhausted after the day and will probably never do something as elaborate as this again–but–it was fun to be able to plan the event and see it come in to fruition!  Here’s to one year survived!


Jul 15 2014

a new season

On Saturday, I photographed my last wedding of the season.

No, not just of the wedding season, but for this season of my  life.

It’s been something I’ve been wrestling with for quite a bit since Lucy has been born.  Last fall when I was getting all my inquiries, I was also spending 99% of my time beside a hospital bed with my daughter.  To say I was distracted and uninterested in furthering my business was an understatement.  I did my best to respond to potential 2014 clients but in the end I only booked a meagre 3 weddings.  I never advertised, my page sat un-updated for quite a while, and I often was late in responding to inquiries.  I told Dave that I was done with the stress of the wedding industry and trying to compete in such a flooded market but he encouraged me to at least wait it out one season with Lucy to see how I could handle it.

In the end I decided it wasn’t fair to either my clients, or to Lucy to be doing both.  I feel like wedding photography is in a category of crazy that is so different from any other genre of photography.  People plan for two years ahead for a one day event, and it’s my job to make sure it looks like the most perfect day that ever happened.  No pressure, right?  I used to be able to deal with it, but since Lucy’s birth I found myself constantly anxious about things like “how will Lucy be the day of the wedding with someone else?” (she doesn’t eat for anyone but me generally), or “how the heck am I supposed to edit a cohesive wedding story if I can’t sit down at the computer for longer than an hour at a time?” (she doesn’t nap well…at all).

It’s been a difficult decision because I love being a wedding photographer.  I love capturing such an important day for people and telling their stories, and it’s always an honour to be trusted with such an important role.

I am not planning on closing my business though.  I have a vision for a style of more candid family photography in and around clients homes that I’m hoping to launch in fall.  I’ve always had the package for this on my website, but with no examples to go by it hasn’t been something that people have been able to see my vision.  This summer I will be working on getting that figured out.

I’m feeling very relaxed about this decision to bow out of the wedding industry.  I can’t wait to explore some new avenues of my photography business in the future.


May 12 2014

monthly prompt: bloom

**I am a part of a small blogger collective consisting of other mom bloggers and each month we are given a word “prompt” to write about. This months prompt is “bloom”**

Just a little eye candy for today.

I was a painter before I was a photographer, so when shooting for art I tend to not worry about focus points as much as light/form/feel.  That’s probably why I like editing so much, because one image can go so many ways.  These were originally edited as black and whites, but on a whim I did one to look like expired film and loved the soft pinks and oranges that came from it….


“Bloom” is the May writing prompt of The Mommy Blogger Collective. In addition to a monthly writing prompt, the collective hosts a monthly blogger featurette. This month we are featuring Misty of Momista Beginnings. A few words from Misty — I’m Misty, the southern California blogger behind Momista Beginnings. I began this blog while pregnant with Mia over two years ago to create a space for mamas out there to connect with their inner “momista.” According to me, a momista is a devout follower and lover of motherhood who takes her role to the next level. She uses her strengths to create the best childhood for her kids through activities, traditions, adventures, exploration and experiences. My blog aims to inspire all of this. Other bits of me make up my blog as well, like my passion for photography, art, crafts, my love for baking and cooking and family updates. I’m an ex art teacher of over 10 years and my art projects for kids make appearances from time to time, too. You can also find me on Bloglovin’, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and at my photography website and its Facebook page!

/// The Mommy Blogger Collective /// Christina, Courteney, Dena, Erica, Erin, Gillian, Katie, Misty, Nicole, and Renée. ///