Thursday, August 17, 2006

My first slideshows!

I just got this software that allows me to quickly make these awesome slideshows! So far I have finished two and they have been making brides cry : )
Check them out:

Beth and Ben's Slideshow

Melissa and Albert's Slideshow

Here are the brides' responses:

"I just viewed the pictures again a minute ago.... ok, I've looked at them on pretty much a regular basis... and really, you did a beautiful job. thank you."


"So I've watched our slideshow another 15 times or so...and cried every time. I've cried more looking at your shots than I did that day! Thank you very very much. If you want a testimonial I'm more than happy to offer one."

So, yeah, I guess this are a hit! I will definitely keep doing them for all my wedding and portrait sessions. Past clients, I can do yours even if it was a few years ago!

More to come...

Monday, August 14, 2006

Santa Rosa, California

For those of you not familiar with the area, let me give you a little background on where I live. Santa Rosa, my current hometown, is about an hour's drive north of SF, in the middle of the beautiful Wine Country of Sonoma County. It's right off of 101 North, and is a small city of about 150,000 people.

I had a bride once ask me, "So, why DO you live in... Santa Rosa?!". It's true it doesn't necessarily sound like the most glamorous address, particularly when seen only from the freeway. I grew up in Petaluma, which is the first Sonoma County town North of Marin, and is becoming more and more Marin-ized all of the time. No offense to Marin or Petaluma, because I love the nature and chic of those areas as much as those of San Francisco. But here in SR there is a little more room for backyards and gardens, art studio and music practice spaces, and community bike rides! We have a lot of friends in their 20s and 30s who are musicians, artists, cooks, bakers, crafters, and so on. There's a lot of young creativity in our area, and it has really helped us nourish and grow our art.

Aside from my personal connections to this area through friends and family, there is a good deal of beauty in local vineyards and wineries, delicious restaurants and cafes, and great stuff to do ranging from ice skating at Snoopy's Ice Arena to a huge variety of classes for everyone at the Santa Rosa Junior College (we live across the street, and I keep meaning to sign up for a class to keep my brain active: I'd like to practice my French, take a History class, try to relearn my lost Ballet...).

There is a community farmers' market every Wednesday night during the summer season, and you can go dancing on several nights (as I sometimes do). Plus, we have countless sushi restaurants and are only about a half hour to the beach and/ or the river!

You can drive East for the beautiful, hot town of Sonoma or the gentle hills of Napa County; North for the Russian River and up and coming Healdsburg, Windsor and Cloverdale, or Mendocino beyond; West will take you to where the river meets the Pacific Ocean and Bodega Bay; heading South you can get to the Bay Area in less time than you might think, and there are millions of beautiful nooks, crannies, hiking trails, beaches, lakes, places to eat or picnic, and anything else you can think of on the way...

Anyway, I'm sure you can tell that I am happy living here and glad to make Sonoma County my home. I know a lot about this area, as well as Marin County and San Francisco/ Oakland/ Berkeley, and I would love to tell you whatever you want to know about any of them! I am happy to help brainstorm dining venues, hotels for out of town guests to stay at, walking or hikind paths, picnic spots, fun activities for tourists, the best places for wine tasting or art viewing, the best thrift, clothing or record stores, as well as all of the best wedding vendors this whole area has to offer.
Just ask!

Multiple Photography Personality Disorder (?)

When I used to work a "normal" full time job as an employee, I would start each new project with a drive to complete it as efficiently as possible. This led to a lot of "okay... now what?" as I finished things at more than twice as fast as my predecessors would. I couldn't really stand sitting around, waiting for things to happen, looking for work to do.

Well, that problem has been totally solved since I started working for myself! My brain is constantly coming up with new projects, ideas, problems, solutions, and on and on and on. Sometimes I feel like I am all over the place with my photography goals, because not only do I do weddings and portraits, but I also have a whole library of stock which I am constantly shooting for and updating; I occasionally get a bee in my bonnet to show some of my more "fine art" stuff at galleries or friends' stores; I also shoot for various magazines and publications and websites and record companies and bands and and and and...

Well, you get the idea.

And I wouldn't have it any other way. Yes, it can be hard trying to fit ALL of that stuff in a day or week or month (or brain!) but I love doing all of it, and it keeps me busy, challenged, and fresh at every shoot.

Stay tuned for updates on some new personal projects as well as magazine work and more!

Sunday, August 13, 2006

New Blog

I am really excited to unveil my new wedding and portrait photography blog! I think this will be a fun way to track what I've been shooting lately and give you a taste of my style and process...

It's a beautiful sunshiney Sunday afternoon, but I'm too eager to edit the past few weekends' photos to take advantage of it. The plan was to take today off, but, well, I kind of love looking through pictures, so I gave in and instead of the "day off" things I should be doing (finishing the dishes, cleaning my car, grocery shopping, et cetera), I'm working on editing Beth and Ben's and Melissa and Albert's photos. Two beautiful morning weddings in perfect weather!

I'll be posting more soon... Check back for more!