Zach Arias: FREE Workshop!

I’ve said it once, I’ll say it again – CreativeLIVE is awesome!

It’s one of my favorite places to learn from right now! And with photography, there is ALWAYS something to learn – that’s why I love it! I spend most my free time (that would be the time between switching laundry & refilling milk cups) searching the internet for resources. And even though education is the 2nd most important investment in my improvement (practice being the first!), I don’t have the budget for costly workshops … not to mention the time & energy involved in dropping Wild Things with sitters, getting myself to the event, and then trying to learn it all!

If you’re a visual learner like me, you need to check it out! Its a live creative classroom and what they do is webcast different courses. They have them on photography, video, design, and fine arts.

The photography courses are done by some BIG names, like Bambi Cantrell, Jasmine Star, professional photogs that you or I wouldn’t normally get to see in action … and the best part is you can watch the webcasts for FREE! While the workshop is happening you can catch it live on the net completely free! If you miss part and decide you HAVE to see it in its entirety or again (& again & again) you can download it after or during the airing, usually for about $149. There’s NO way you’re gonna get to go to a Zack Arias 2 day, 6hrs per day workshop for only $99! So, this is a great deal.

And some day, when my Wild Things are in school, I’ll be able to watch an entire workshop webcast. But until then, I can catch valuable tidbits of techniques & tips and have the option of buying the download if I decide I could really benefit from studying it.

So, go check it out & enroll in the last workshop being offered by Zack Arias – a MASTER in studio lighting!  … I’ll be watching the action (while in my pjs!) –

http://creativelive.com/courses/zack-arias-again

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Mommy Monday: Jabber Jaws

If you know anything about my Wild Thing, its that he is of the Jabber Jaws genus. It may take him a while to warm up to you, but once he does – there’s NO stopping his Jabber Jaws! He cracks us up on a daily basis with some of the crazy things he says. His wit is beyond his 3 years … and we ALWAYS have to watch what we say around him lest it be used against us later! I was in a delirium when he was born but I’m pretty sure he came out jabbering.

I may not be able to capture his actual jabbers with my camera but this is as close as I can get … here’s a small sample of the jabber we call “Reedish” … Enjoy!

“Mommy, I’m not eating the lollipop before dinner … I’m just holding it in my mouth”

“Is this a joke? … follow instructions? Mommy, I’m not a ROBOT!”

“I don’t like my job is ‘listen to mommy’. I want Daisy’s [the dog] job – she sniffs the house all day”

“Mommy, my sense of smell says *sniiiiiiif* turtles and *sniiiiiif* boogers”

“Nothing to worry about in here, its only a mess – no one got hurt!”

“Don’t trip on any tanks … oh daddy, don’t slip off your ladder … if you fall down, check your knees for sticks …” [10 mins later] … and daddy don’t run down hill too fast” Me: Reed, baby just tell daddy to ‘be careful’. Reed: well, I AM but him maybe doesn’t know how.

“wow! Thank you Jesus for special chips from the grocery store. He KNOWS these are my favorite!”

Me: Reed, tomorrow is church school, no crying when I drop you off, okay? Other kids don’t cry. Reed: Mooommy, but other kids aren’t Reeeeed. And I NEED to cry because I’m hungry. Me: But you eat breakfast before & I leave you a snack! Reed: WHAAAT?! Mommy! someone has been eating my food!

“Mommy, this dinosaur is a herpie-vore, he eats salads”

“Mommy, why isn’t my bellybutton ‘private’ if its down here?” …um, because THAT is NOT your bellybutton!

Photog Friday: Free CreativeLIVE Workshops

One of the things that I feel is important to improving the quality of my work is continuous learning. With photography, there is ALWAYS something to learn – that’s why I love it! I spend most my free time (that would be the time between switching laundry & refilling milk cups) searching the internet for resources. And even though education is the 2nd most important investment in my improvement (practice being the first!), I don’t have the budget for costly workshops … not to mention the time & energy involved in dropping Wild Things with sitters, getting myself to the event, and then trying to learn it all!

A resource I just discovered that I’d like to share because its one of my new favorites is CreativeLIVE.  If you’re a visual learner like me, you need to check it out! Its a live creative classroom and what they do is webcast different courses. They have them on photography, video, design, and fine arts.

The photography courses are done by some BIG names, like Bambi Cantrell, Jasmine Star, professional photogs that you or I wouldn’t normally get to see in action … and the best part is you can watch the webcasts for FREE! While the workshop is happening you can catch it live on the net completely free! If you miss part and decide you HAVE to see it in its entirety or again (& again & again) you can download it after or during the airing, usually for about $149. There’s NO way you’re gonna get to go to a Jasmine Star 2 day, 6hrs per day workshop for only $149! So, this is a great deal.

They also have clips of different workshops posted on YouTube for free.

And some day, when my Wild Things are in school, I’ll be able to watch an entire workshop webcast. But until then, I can catch valuable tidbits of techniques & tips and have the option of buying the download if I decide I could really benefit from studying it.

So, go check it out! Watch some experts in action (while in your pjs!) – http://creativelive.com

Some Years Are Painfully Long

When I was asked to do this session last year, after finding out how many people would be involved, I was almost too afraid to accept! Up to that point, I had never done photos for a group this large … how long would it take? Can I corral that many in 1 shot? and HOW many kids?! It was overwhelming. But I’m way too fond of this particular family to NOT give it a try! I’m forever blessed for having spent the time with them. It was a beautiful day, the family was obviously enjoying each other, everyone was smiling.

Less than 2 months later, they tragically lost their father. He was a cornerstone of the who they are, he was a husband, a father, a father to those that didn’t have one, and a friend to all of us.

Its been a painful year of change, adjustment, and sorrow but I’m glad to say this family hasn’t  forgotten a single happy moment spent with him. And my tears are for selfish reasons because I know he looks proudly down on each them from heaven. … and I’ll always hear “Come & eat” in my head when I see his face :)

Today is a 1 year anniversary of a life that deserves to be celebrated.

Mommy Monday: The Potty Milestone

Potty Training: the milestone that kept me up at night.

We started talking about him going on the potty just before Reed was 2 years old. The whole thing stressed him out so we decided to worry about it later – like, when he was 5! But 6 months later, on his own terms, he decided he was ready and never wore another diaper again.

At 2 the tears were his, looking back at this shot they’re now mine. Such a bittersweet milestone. It was the last piece of “baby” I had to lose in order to start a chapter called “little boy”. While each chapter seems to get better, sometimes you wish you could just get through them a little bit slower.

In honor of Reed’s 1 year anniversary of being potty trained, here is my only shot of the process.

Photog Friday: Alluring a Wild Thing

Happy Friday!!

For today’s tip I’d like to share a technique that not only gets your Wild Thing out of hiding – but will put a smile on their face! It will require an assistant (in my case I used daddy), a little bit of temptation, and is so simple you’ll smack your forehead.

Its important to have your camera settings ready because you won’t have much time to adjust them once you start.

So here it is …

1. Instruct your assistant to get about 30 feet away from you.

2. Call your Wild Thing with a “Oooooh looook what I haaaave!” as you taunt them with a piece of candy (we use dum dums suckers). When you hear your Wild Thing squeal with delight, you’re doing it right! Wait for them to get about a foot from you and toss the candy to your assistant.

3. Have you assistant follow step #2 and toss the candy back so it lands just in front of you. Focus on the Wild Thing as they turn on their heels and head straight for you! If you’re quick about it, you’ll have time to snatch the candy just before they do and toss it back the other way to get ready for another opportunity to shoot them on the way back.

You can take an unwilling, defiant Wild Thing and turn them into a blissful, smiling face in less than 10 seconds … and have the photograph to prove it!

Family Fun at the Park

Some of you may recognize this family by the little cutie they’ve got!

This was a FUN session, we didn’t have any agenda. It was just a “play with the baby” afternoon. The weather was perfect and we all had a great time.

They were one of my very 1st families I photographed. It’s been my pleasure to capture some of their family moments a few times since then! Special thanks to them for seeing something in me from the start … and then come back for more! THANK YOU! :)