Gabrio and Jenny rolled up in the car with Jenny’s dress piled into her lap and a huge mirror propped up in the trunk. They were ready to take on Caufeild Park and we immediately ran out to the rocks. After rescheduling because of rain, the weather was more perfect than any of us could have asked for (other than some signature Vancouver August smoke) and jumped right into it. Though Gabrio and Jenny had never been photographed before, they were so natural and lovely in front of the camera. I love how the danced together in the water and shared stories of how they met.
You never quite know what Madina will pull out of her rolling suitcase, and this summer proved no different. Mixing solids, prints, crops, dresses, and skirts, Madina showed me what style can really do with the ever changing seasons of Vancouver. From street wear to beach days, she’s ready to go with any outfit that you can think of! Here are a few of my favourite snaps from this summer working with Madina!
Madina’s feed is the definition of cool. Check it out now!
There are days when everything lines up perfectly. The sun is at the perfect height, the greens are the creamy hues that dreams are made of, the temperature feel just right, and your subjects are as bright and airy as the images you wish to create. This is what transpired on the day I got to photography Amanda and Emily.
We met up at Jericho beach on the perfect day to capture both of them doing what they love to do - yoga! Despite my lack of knowledge of the names of the poses, they rocked it out and I was left with a gorgeous set of a couple of absolute stunnas! Check out the set below - it’s truly one of my faves of the summer!
I’ve heard a lot about you, more than I every thought I would. Dang, you are beautiful. I’ve always had a thing for greenery, but your greens glisten against the stark greys and feel like they go on forever until they touch the sky. For the longest time, you were just a book slammed into a lime green backpack and videos randomly sent to my inbox, but I’m glad we finally met.
We’re really different, you and I. You are adventurous and grand, I am a natural homebody. You represent a kind of fun that I see no fun in, but we got along better than I expected. Maybe it was the great conversation and caffeine leading up to meeting you, or the warm spirits that welcomed me there, or, I hate to be vain, but it might have been your beauty. I knew I’d love capturing you, but it was more awe inspiring that I expected.
Thank you for being a space for every emotion under the sun. For graciously giving us a playground amongst the trees for people to challenge themselves, struggle, and conquer you. I am grateful for the new experiences and the new friendships I’ve made. Meeting you helps me understand my friends so much more.
Until next time,
Many thanks to this crew of climbers who embraced me so whole heartedly and let me tag along on their adventures.
Families shoots are often hectic!
They're sandwiched in between a million other commitments and kids get frustrated and over the whole experience before you know it. The Richards Family were incredible in that they designed their family shoot around the kids! We ventured off to Lynn Canyon early in the morning to run off steam and explore the creek and trails. It was a perfect way to mix posed shots with in the moment climbing and exploring! Check out the awesome result!
Where did time go?
One year ago, I went for it - jumped head first into the unknown and surrendered to my passion to make something happen. I left my full-time teaching job to chase after a dream that started in my childhood and had no damn idea what would come of it or who I would be at the end of this journey. I prepared myself to fail, to cry, to experiment, and maybe, just maybe, thrive.
Here are some things I learned in my first year of freelance life:
surround yourself with people who understand that support comes in many forms
I knew going from a job that demanded extroversion from me daily to working alone in my office was going to be tough, but having people support me through the transition made it possible. The quick texts, random e-mails, and check-ins made all the difference. When busy season hit, the best way my friends and family supported me was by never judging or getting mad when I had to reschedule plans or bail last minute because I landed a gig. Confrontation isn't my jam, but when I'd text people and their response was emojis full of love and excitement, it made all the difference!
hustle hard + create for yourself
Busy season is definitely a thing for photographers, and it hit me hard this year.
I felt like a chipmunk, saying yes to everything and beyond in the summer and pushing myself to my limits. Caffeine became my best friend. But, I also tried to make time to capture for myself and to make passion projects happen. Even if they're still in RAWs on my computer, to shoot for yourself was key to maintaining my passion.
track your time
I didn't start tracking my time until a few months ago. I kept feeling like time was escaping me. It helped me realize when my mind wanders and to quantify the time that goes into prepping for a shoot or wedding. It also made me see that some days are bad days, and that's okay! It helped me balance my time more as I noticed weekends bleeding into weekdays and reminding myself to not feel guilty when I take extra time off during the week because I shot all weekend!
try to remember the ups during the downs
Damn, it's so easy to hang on to the bads - the failed shoots, the shot that had in your mind that was perfect but ended up being overexposed or out of focus, or not landing that job you wanted so badly. It was insane how many times I was high off of a beaming e-mail response from a client, to receive one criticism later that week, and be down in the dumps for days or how easily I forgot how many jobs I desperately wanted and landed after being passed on for another client. I'm still working on this one, and trying to remember that having bad days are a part of any job.
snapchat is life
I was never a snapchat person. I resisted it for years, feeling that instagram was all I needed. Now, I am the biggest advocate for snapchat. There's something to be said when you can see your friend or family's eyes (even if they're masked under a filter) and to be able to share the tiny, most ridiculous moments with others. Snapchat was definitely a distraction on screen days, but they were also a saviour that makes me feel remembered and loved.
lead with kindness
I shot a networking event once where we discussed business strategies and I admitted that I didn't have one, other than trying to be myself and to be kind. I try to be as honest and transparent with my clients as possible - admitting what areas of photography are my strong suits and where I'm still working on things, being realistic with return dates, and setting clear expectations for shoots. I try to make every business decision with humanity, and though some may feel that this hurts my bottom line, but dang, you catch way more bees with honey.
What does next year bring?
No clue! I started this journey with big dreams and high hopes, but unclear expectations, and that's the attitude I'm bringing into my second year freelancing.
I am trying to learn from my lessons and starting a new monthly newsletter as a personal project! I've realized there's so much more to learn and the best way to do that is to talk to people and hear about their experiences. This year's theme for my newsletter is: Go For It! I'll be interviewing freelancers, small business owners, and entrepreneurs who chased their dreams and came out, alive, on the other side.
Join me, why don't ch'ya?
Insane amounts of love to the man behind the lens who dealt with my awkward nature to snap these photos. I've never walked away from a photoshoot feeling like someone captured my spirit just right, like he did.
Show him some love!