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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Toddler Portraits in Our Home Studio

Our good friend Megan brought over her now 19-month-old daughter for some portraits in our home studio. Megan gave the photos as a surprise Christmas gift to daddy Erik.

It's great to see how this little one has grown over the past year and a half!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Thanksgiving-Christmas in St. Johns, AZ

Having families in different states prompts Amanda and I to get creative with how we celebrate the holidays. This past Thanksgiving we also celebrated Christmas in St. Johns, at Amanda's parents'.

Our first night there brought an early dusting of snow, which added to the Christmas feel of things! This is Amanda's grandfather's house.
Some grass in the front yard with a frosting of snow.
Pyracantha berries and snow.
Rocher enjoying a good run over the cold snow. She's never seen this stuff in Phoenix!
Rocher and her buddy Sailor romping around.
Rocher sitting unusually still.
A Christmas tree topper to end all Christmas tree toppers.
One of these things is just like the other.
The world's largest Christmas stockings, courtesy of Monica.
This year Amanda's mom Nellie introduced us to a new Christmas tradition, wreath making. The girls were incredibly talented and came up with some award-worthy designs. I, on the other hand, will probably just stick to photographing the completed wreaths! :) (Guess which one's mine.)
Amanda, Monica, and Nellie, and their finished creations.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Contemporary Silver and 18K Gold Jewelry by Suzanna DiMarco

It's been almost exactly a year since I first met Suzanna and discovered her beautiful jewelry designs. This year she brought several new silver and 18K gold pieces for me to photograph. Her ring designs are especially cool as they consist of three interlocking pieces that combine to form a unique whole. You can browse more of Suzanna's work on her website.

All designs are copyright ©2010, Suzanna DiMarco.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Petroglyph Glass Bracelets by Kevin O'Grady

I recently photographed these new petroglyph bracelets by glass artist Kevin O'Grady. Each bracelet features cutaway windows that reveal intricate petroglyph designs inside the bracelet. I also had the opportunity to photograph one of Kevin's vortex marbles. The image you see here is a composite of 5 separate images, which were necessary to capture the depth of the marble and to minimize the reflections of the studio lights.You can see more of Kevin's work on his website.

All designs are Copyright ©2010, Kevin O'Grady.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Antique Bracelets by Pam Amputh

Jewelry designer Pam Amputh (onsupa at gmail dot com) puts a new spin on antique silverware, crafting forks and other items into wearable, one-of-a-kind bracelets. The designs are both suprising and elegant. See more of her work at:

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Lampworked Glass Jewelry by Anita Farrah

These beautiful, lampworked-glass, lotus pendants were created by artist Anita Farrah. Anita's talents don't stop at glass beadmaking; she is also a life coach and yoga teacher. She describes the process of creating her glass beads as a "moving meditation." Check out more of her amazing work on her website.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Why Hire a Professional Wedding Photographer When My Friend Can Do the Photos?

With the downturn in the economy, brides and grooms have to be creative to find ways to afford the wedding they want. You may be tempted to save money on your wedding by hiring a friend, family member, or student to do your wedding photos. While this does offer an attractive and immediate benefit (saving money), the long-term consequences can be very devastating: low quality photos; a poorly planned and stressful wedding day; strained relationships with that friend or family member; and in some cases, no photos at all.

Professional photographers offer a wealth of knowledge and experience, and provide many benefits over hiring a friend or family member.

1) A Well-Planned Wedding Day:
A professional photographer will sit down with you and your wedding planner, to establish a schedule for the photos on your wedding day. The photographer does this with you and your guests in mind, seamlessly blending photos into your schedule, while maximizing the time you get to spend with your guests. You’ll know exactly when the dressing room, bridal party, and extended family photos fit in your day, letting you focus on enjoying your wedding stress-free.

2) Experience:
A professional photographer has worked dozens of weddings, and has a solid understanding of the typical flow of events. This means they will always be in the right place at the right time, capturing fleeting moments that an amateur may miss. You won’t have to wait to cut your cake or do the bouquet toss while somebody searches for your photographer.

3) Back-Up:
What happens in the event of an equipment failure? If you hired a friend or family member, probably nothing. The wedding will have to continue on without any photographic record of those special, once-in-a-lifetime moments. However, if you hired a professional, they will be ready with a backup camera, memory cards, flashes, batteries, etc., to make sure the photos continue uninterrupted. And a professional will have an assistant or backup photographer on hand to assist with the photography.

4) Quality:
Would you hire an amateur contractor to install your new swimming pool or gas barbecue? Hopefully not. Besides obvious safety concerns, the quality of your finished pool or barbecue could be compromised, meaning you’ll need expensive repairs down the line. In the end, the money you saved by going with an amateur will be spent later in repairs. Unfortunately, low quality wedding photos can’t be repaired or reshot. A professional can guarantee that your wedding photos are well lit, color-balanced, properly composed, and above all, beautiful.

5) The Finished Product:
Another area where professional photographers excel over amateurs is in the presentation of your finished images. An amateur will most likely provide you with digital images on a CD. And it’s likely that’s where they’ll stay, collecting dust on a bookshelf. Professionals, on the other hand, offer a variety of heirloom quality, handmade products that you can’t purchase at your local Walgreens or CostCo: handmade, leather-bound albums; signature frames with museum-quality glass; and wall-sized metal prints and canvas wraps. Professionals work hard to build relationships with photo labs, album binders, and other providers to offer you a diversity of beautiful keepsakes.

Getting married is a big commitment that requires careful planning. When it comes time for your wedding day, the last thing you want to worry about is whether or not your photographer will provide quality service. So choose carefully and go with a professional, so you and your groom can focus on the bliss of your wedding day and the beginning of your new life together!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Rachel and Sean 10/10/10 Wedding at Freestone Park, Gilbert, AZ

Rachel and Sean had an intimate wedding ceremony at Freestone Park in Gilbert, joined by their adorable daughter and immediate family. Reverend Crystal Lloyd of Ceremonies by Crystal provided her expert officiant services for the ceremony.

Besides being a cool date, 10/10/10 held additional significance for Rachel and Sean, who are fans of author Douglas Adams. 101010 is 42 in binary, which in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy happens to be the "ultimate answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything." Continuing with the theme, everyone posed for some fun shots with towels, which according to Adams is "the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have."

Friday, October 15, 2010

On-Location Business Headshot Portraits

We're always thrilled to hear from previous customers of ours as they journey through life. J.D. and Quanna (not pictured below) first came to us for their engagement session and wedding in 2007. J.D. then came back to us in June of 2009, for business portraits in our home studio. J.D. is now with Integrated Financial Strategies in Scottsdale, and referred us (thanks J.D.!) when his coworkers (below) needed business headshot portraits.

These portraits were done on location in the entryway of IFS' office. Since space was limited, I brought in smaller, portable Canon speedlite flashes (rather than our studio lights), and a 5'-wide, white seamless backdrop.