I got to shoot an amazing wedding this weekend down in Iowa, and I wanted to give you a sneak peek! I'll have the highlights of the day blogged next week, but until then, you can enjoy this preview.
I wanted to share my favorite image from a recent family portrait session. When I am fortunate to catch a moment like this, I remember how much I love my job.
I just remodeled my photo studio and had my first shoot in it last week, and wow was it fun! I've been wanting a space where I could bring families and clients for a while now (my former space was fine for dogs, but not much else), and I'm slowly getting all the props in order for the modern space that I want it to be. Here are a few shots from the first shoot!
Everyone can admit this winter has been LONG and COLD. When I approached my buddy about a northern Minnesota camping trip at the end of February I was getting a mixed response. I finally talked him into going. The week leading up to the trip involved a lot of convincing and promise that we both would come home with all our fingers and toes.
We ultimately decided to head up to the Iron Range about 200 miles north of Minneapolis. I was avoiding checking the weather but I knew that we had a chilly weekend ahead of us. We promptly packed our sleds and loaded up the Jeep.
With the gear wagon packed and the cup holders loaded we set off!
Once we arrived we began our trek after digging a parking stop for the Jeep. Once parked we got bundled up and strapped on the snow shoes and started the trek.
Moving our sleds in the deep snow turned out to be a bigger challenge that we had anticipated. we luckily were able to get everything to camp after a few trips! After digging out our "Home" for the weekend we quickly got a fire rolling and setup camp.
With the sun quickly setting we knew that getting warm and staying warm would be critical for survival, the temperatures we sitting right around -8. After a nice warm dinner and some warm water we shivered around the fire for awhile and took some time lapses of the stars.
After drying gloves, socks, face masks by the fire we boiled up some water and tossed it in the tent with us. Once in the tent we fired up the heater and warmed up the tent to a balmy 30ish degrees. Knowing running the heater all night was not an option we wanted to start off as warm as we could. Completing the simple process of changing, getting on fresh socks, placing hand and foot warmers strategically in your gloves and socks while in a cramped tent turned out to be enough fun for one night. Once we were cinched tightly in our bags we called it a night.
- DAY 2 -
Once the sun started coming up we both got very optimistic that maybe we would be able to feel the warmth of the sun in the tent.. wrong.
With the high for the day of -16 we knew staying warm would be critical. It's quite amazing how a warm breakfast and some coffee would help raise moral around camp. Once you taste that first sip of coffee and that first spoonful of oatmeal you get this rush, this feeling of power. It's moments like the this that keep me going, you honestly feel like superman knowing that you just survived a night at -18 in the back country of Minnesota . We found out later it was only 10 degrees colder on the summit of Mt. Everest that night.
Camping in the winter is a constant battle to stay warm without sweating, keeping warm and dry are the two biggest challenges we faced. Our cameras also really started to feel the pain. Holding your frostbitten camera even through thin gloves made taking photos next to impossible.
After collecting wood, watching water boil, making a snow tunnel, and a nice warm lunch we strapped on the snowshoes and headed out.
Once back at camp came some more busy work around camp, followed by some afternoon spirits. Gathering wood became a great source of warmth in 2 ways; trudging through the snow works up quite the sweat, and we then get to burn the wood and stay warm. That a huge win in my book!!
We sat out the cold and night with a nice fire, the two of us talked about our weekends adventures. We learned so much about staying warm and staying smart in the extreme cold. We then headed to bed that night after taking a few more star photos.
- DAY 3 -
After several trips back to the Jeep we loaded up and headed home.
Looking back on the weekend I can't wait to get out camping this summer and next winter. Getting out into the wilderness and forgetting about everything but the bare essentials is what getting out is all about to me. Nothing makes you appreciate a bottle of water like boiling snow over an open flame for 25 minutes. Warm coffee and oatmeal in the morning make you feel like you have one some sort of lottery in the wild. That's not a feeling you get everyday by turning on the faucet, or microwaving some oatmeal.
When I was first met Briana and Jason I was shooting senior portraits for Jason's sister, we started talking about their upcoming wedding and the rest was history!
When planning their engagement session we wanted to capture the two of them where they first met, and like that we were off to Kieran's Irish Pub in the heart of Minneapolis. I was so excited to have the entire place to run wild and get creative with these two. After capturing the mood of Kieran's we decided to head outside, if anyone as gone outside this winter you know there haven't been too many "warm" days...
Once we got bundled up we ended up heading over to Loring Park to soak up what was left of the beautiful sun.
We ran around, sat on some snow covered benches, and ran around the park. Boy was I happy I wore boots!
I am so excited to shooting Briana and Jason's wedding this summer at the Gitchi Gammi Club up in Duluth, MN.
This is one of my beautiful soon-to-be-brides! Lisa wanted to update her photos for her website & Facebook pages with some fresh new imagery & I was more than game! Besides weddings a lot of the sessions I photograph are of newborns & children & what I like to call "Talent Sessions". I mean, let's face it, in some way shape or form, we are all talented. Some people can draw, others can act & then there are those of you who sell real estate really well! I'm not sure about her ability to draw or act but Lisa sells real estate really well! This was also a fun way for Lisa & I to get to know each other a little better before the big day! Here is just a sneak peek of a few of the images from her session! Enjoy!
Indulge those you love this week. Have a wonderful and happy Valentine's Day everyone!
Lately, I've photographed many families for their annual holiday portrait. Last week, after a shoot with a little boy in the studio, I managed to get Annika in her holiday dress and her hair brushed so that I could snap a few portraits. As with most toddlers, we had just under 5 minutes before things unravelled. Here is Annika, not quite 2 years old. Hope you all have a wonderful holiday, especially the newlyweds and newly-engaged!
I wanted to push my creative boundaries and try something new. So I went out into the the woods and did the opposite of what I normally do during a photo shoot. I liked it!
I've been photographing some boudoir sessions lately and I have to tell you it's soooo awesome! Working with incredible women and helping them see how fabulous they are is so rewarding. I just wanted to share a little peek of a recent shoot. Nothing over the top crazy, just some modern, real life, beautiful art. :)
Let's be clear, the sex in that header refers to dog humping. And yes, I'm going there. How cute is this little dog mounting all the big ones? And the poor victim is dressed like Batman. Ah, let's embrace the crazy, shall we?
Last weekend, I heard about this local band (Wild!!Wing) who was filming their newest rock video at a local art gallery, and they wanted it to be a concert setting, but with dogs instead of humans as the audience -- and they were asking if I could lend them my dog.
Hoooo boy! If you have learned anything about me in the last year or so, it's that I love dogs, and I love live music -- so this was the perfect collision of both worlds. First off, I was extremely impressed with the band's concern for the safety of the animals. All dogs had to be up on their shots before mingling, and they didn't actually play their music during the filming -- but rather kept it quiet for the dogs' ears. You have not been thoroughly entertained until you've seen a room full of people trying to herd their dogs in front of a stage filled with lazers and smoke machines while a rock band (including a key-tar!) silently jams in the background. Crazy! But so much fun.
Because photographing dogs is one of my favorite things ever, I asked if I could document the day -- and here are a few of my favorite photos. The enormous collie? That's my pup, Merlin. He's 10 years old and was WORN OUT from all the activity -- hence him laying down.
Chicago, where the sun shines and where the sweetest couple ever got engaged. When Meghan, PJ and I first began discussing their wedding, it came up that they were engaged at North Avenue Beach. PJ was getting his Masters at DePaul University and Meghan was visiting almost every weekend via a friend's companion pass on Delta. Nice deal, right? So, a large part of their relationship grew in Chicago. Since I have so many fond memories and friends there myself, we hatched a plan to shoot their engagement pictures on location at the first sign of nice weather. Here are the results!
This time of year is tough on us wedding photographers as... well... there aren't many weddings happening! So many of us fill our time with other photo interests, and today I thought I'd show you some of the recent dog photography I've been doing.
Some days are spent running in the snow and playing a little fetch...
But most of my shoots are done back at the studio.
You know what my favorite thing to photograph is? Besides rock'n'roll? PUPPIES.
You know when people get puppies? IN THE SPRING. That's in like three weeks. So if you're getting a puppy, please let me know! They'll only stay that cute for a month or two, and you really should document the adorableness while you can.
Emi is a lucky girl and obviously well liked. I photographed her Bat Mitzvah a few weeks ago and couldn't have been more in awe of her carefree energy. She was having what I assume will be the most exciting day of her life until, perhaps, her wedding day arrives some years down the road. Her parents created this spectacular party with an "Emi Awards" theme, complete with red carpet, marquee lighting, and paparazzi photography. Congratulations to Emi on her Bat Mitzvah!
Red, black, with just a touch of pin up and you get a sexy lumberjack! The 2nd edition of Mrs. Depew Vintage. These awesome lumberjack knickers are handmade by Ohhh Lulu lingerie and Apparel, based out of Ontario, Canada. The store carries aaaaadorable "romantic lingerie with a vintage flair," and it's all custom made to fit! Check out more of her collections HERE.
I have a daughter, Annika. This week, I've been wondering where the past year went to. Though obviously on a much smaller scale, I am having as much fun planning her first birthday party as I had planning my wedding. I took her picture just the other week. Isn't she cute?