Vanessa Goes to Denver

Vanessa Goes To Denver!

February 22-24 I drove to Nashville, TN from Evansville, IN and then flew to Denver, CO…by myself. It was certainly a weekend of FIRSTS! I had never flown alone, been to a photography workshop, taken an Uber alone, booked/stayed in an AIRBNB…. it was definitely an adventure!

I made a short video here:

I am definitely NOT a videographer but it was definitely fun to make.

2018 - 365 Project

This is a link to the images I shot during the 365 project I attempted to do in 2018.

While I didn’t complete the full 365 project, I committed to it for 6 months out of a 12 month year. That in itself is incredible for me. Often times we try to do something new and give up and call it a failure. I do not feel like I failed during the journey of that project.

I grew. I grew my photography skills. I looked at things from different perspectives and angles (pun intended). I even bought a new camera lens and fell in love with it. I challenged myself with the photo prompts. I found different things I enjoy photographing that I may never have tried without this project.

“Don’t fear failure. Fear being in the exact same place next year as you are today.”

2018 Photos <—- Click here to see larger images

most of the photos.jpg

Shooting for yourself

I have recently learned the importance of shooting for yourself. I feel like that sounds a little it should be "stating the obvious". The photography I offer to my clients is 100% me, my passion, my vision and what I love. So how is that different from "shooting for yourself"? 

I am in a group of 3,000+ other photographers that are given a new prompt every day that we have to shoot. I don't get paid for it. I don't get judged for it. What I get out of it is this: growth, excitement, new ideas, new discoveries, new found loves, new experiences, challenges, frustrations, and the list goes on and on. 

I have shot photo's of flowers, food, chairs, birds, coffee, squirrels, and this list also goes on and on. If you click here it will take you to a link of the photo's I have done & will continue to do throughout the entire year of 2018. There are days that I fall behind. I may get "stuck" on a prompt. Whether that is because I am not sure what I want to photograph....I don't have time... or I'm not sure how I, personally, am interpreting the prompt. Remember, there is no right or wrong way to interpret the prompts. This is how I see the prompt...the vision I have...

What I love so much about this journey are the things I am learning along the way. 2018 is going to be a great year for growth. I wanted to share with you some of my favorites so far. I hope you will be part of my 2018 journey. Whether that be as a client or the enjoyment of the prompts I produce each day.



Girly Minis

On February 10th I held the "Girly Mini" sessions. How fun! I chose the girly mini session because I wanted your daughter to feel special & empowered. I wanted to bring out the beautiful soul you created in a photographic print to treasure for a lifetime. The girly mini's were done inside my home. They were a quick session including a close up headshot, a details shot including hands/feet & a sitting position focusing on their eyes....which some may say the windows to the soul. Check out some of the sneak peaks below:

Before & After

There's a photographer that I follow...I love her work. Her photography is very similar to what I like and want to do - which probably explains why I "follow" her. Sometimes I would look at her photo's and with jealously think "dang, why can't Evansville have pretty places like that". 

Open your eyes. These nooks & crannies are everywhere. They are spots in your backyard. They are the side of a brick building in a downtown area. A trail behind a playground. An tree next a building on a side road that you drive by everyday and never look at. 

What may seem like normal, everyday, sites & sceneries ....can be transformed into whatever your hearts desire shows you in your minds eye.

Sometimes I am the grammar police - but when it comes to what I write in these "blogs of words".... I am writing how I am thinking, which is sometimes a garbled mess.

Below is (an iphone) photo of a spot in my backyard. A tree that has pink flowers... part of my A/C unit..a basketball goal...some shrubbery that hasn't been trimmed... 

Then a photo... of a girl... straight out of the camera....

To a then transformed photo of how I saw it in my mind. (or pretty close to it)

So yes, I have said it before...sometimes your photographer will take you, to what seems like, ordinary places...but what they have in store is much more beyond the extraordinary. 



Prints & Sessions

I've said it and I'll say it again. Photography is an investment. I have these words on my website, my facebook, and if you ask me I'll probably say it too ;)

Which brings me to PRINTS. Ya know, those things you buy every school year when your child gets their photo taken? Prints. 

Prints are a gift. Yes, I know you can go to CVS or and get deals & steals. Just get what you pay for.  When you buy that package from the school you don't generally bat an eye, right? You shouldn't with your photographer either. 

I'm sure there is some eye rolling and judgements going on right now. "I can't believe she is saying this."  I want to educate you just as well as the next photog. 

So, why are they more expensive? They are gifts. They are high quality printed photographs. They are art. They are an everlasting memory that you will look back on and (hopefully) remember,- haha. 

--Wait, so you charged me a session fee & prints are an additional cost? --

Yes. When you get your car's oil change, you pay for labor and parts. Photography is to labor as prints are to parts. There, I did it! I made an analogy! -->easily entertained<-- Probably not the BEST analogy...but I hope it gets the basic idea across.

I really & truly do hope this helps. I'm not here to be the class clown (mainly because I am an introvert) or jerk. I know people have questions & even photographers have questions. I have questions. We help one another & we want you to be educated as well.


Break the cookie cutter

Ok well maybe not LITERALLY break the cookie cutter... that could be bad. 

What I mean mean is...

When your family members tell you it is time to get together to take family photo' you shutter at the thought?

You think "Oh great, it's time to get out my Sunday's best. The kids need haircuts. Their polo needs ironed. Is this going to conflict with t-ball, dance, and clarinet lessons? Are we going to do this before or after the baby's nap? 

Why has the stigma of family photo's become such a "hassle"? Why has PHOTOGRAPHY turned into something you only do for: Family Photo's, Mile Marker Birthdays/Newborns, Graduations, Engagements, Weddings, Nature....? 

For many years I tried to put myself in one of those boxes...actually many of those boxes.

I'm not a box or a cookie cutter.

Photography is not all the same. 

I am candid. Sure, I can stage portraits and I like themed portraits. The more bizarre the better ;)

Let's make photography fun again. It is not a hassle. It is awkward, fun, interesting, crazy, geeky, etc.

My photo's aren't traditional. They are unique. They tell a story. I understand that not all stories are happily ever after's. I want to tell all of the stories. The good. The bad. Everything in between. 

What's your story?


Things I like to photograph

Sometimes when people ask me what I like to photograph...

I stare at them blankly for a few, brief, awkward moments. It's hard to describe what I like. It is more of a fine art. What category does: pretty dress in an enchanted forest - fall under? Orrrr... favorite superhero costume running through a sprinkler - fall under? 

I want to capture a memory. I want to capture the essence of you. I want to capture what makes you, YOU. Something that... when people look at the photograph, they say, "Wow! This photo couldn't have portrayed you any better." ...or something like that ;)

If you love ballet, let's photograph that. If your son is obsessed with PJ Mask... let's put that costume on & run in the backyard. If your granddaughter loves having tea parties...let's set it up at the park & photograph that. If you have "left-over" winter-formal dresses or prom dresses...let's dig them out again!

I still love family photography, group photo's & individual portraits. Have a favorite outfit that makes you feel fabulous? Pick that! Have a family of goobers that are Harry Potter obsessed? Let's do your family portrait Harry Potter inspired. 

I don't have a studio. I don't want one. It isn't me. Let's create something special together, outside, in nature. Think outside the box. 



High 5

Love love love taking photo's of this girl. She's always so easy peasy to photography. She loves the camera & it loves her! <3 I have been taking her photo's every year and love seeing her grow! These are probably my favorite photo's to date. 


Hello? Oh, duh. That's right...I have a blog. This is what happens when I get busy. Life. Life happens! Since the last blog, FOUR months ago... I have done a couple of different things photography related. I attended the Children's Center for Dance Education fundraiser, The Black & Pink Ball, in November. I photographed some things there.

In December, I photographed a really fun family but there photos were top secret until closer to Christmas. No pregnancy announcement or anything...but they were for Christmas cards & they didn't want to spoil the fun beforehand. TOTALLY understandable. I have their permission to post them but I forgot. #shocker #Iforgetthingsallthetime. December was also busy with the Children's Center for Dance Education's Nutcracker production.

January started with a cruise through the Western Caribbean! The stops were Isla Roatan in Honduras, Grand Cayman & Belize. It was absolutely beautiful! I'll have to share some of those photo's too! 

Welcome to February & I am off to a concert this weekend in Indianapolis to see my ALL TIME FAVORITE BAND ----> MARIANAS TRENCH!!! I got VIP tickets...I am SO excited. Photo's to come of that too! 

Oh Oh! I also took a photo for the dance studio for their upcoming performance of Aladdin & the Magic Lamp...if everything goes smoothly it will be up on some billboards in Evansville!! How Cool Is That?!?!?! ...I'll post that too... 

Sounds like I have a lot of posting to catch up on! 

Toodles! {--> toodles? I never say that... I must be tired... or hyper... I can't tell}



Horsing Around

I had a blast, as usual, taking photo's of a family I love dearly. Sadly, they don't live in town anymore so we don't get to see each other that often. While riding on a Gator, (yes I said Gator), to the different locations...we found ourselves on a lot that had horses. Horses!

No worries, we weren't trespassing...we just weren't expecting the horses to come up to us either! (No worries, there was a fence) They were SUPER friendly and BEAUTIFUL! 

The best and funniest part about the horses...I was really close to the fence while trying to capture a shot and one of them kept bending it's head over the fence to try and nibble on my hair! 


Glare? Orb? Lens Flare?...Father

Call it a glare. Call it an orb. Call it a lens flare. Call it a mistake. Call it what you want.

I call it: A visit from his father who wanted to be in the photo too. I told you in the blog titled: 21. that the father of my children passed away earlier this year. When taking my son's photo I didn't see any special lighting coming through, my finger wasn't covering any part of the lens, I didn't add any special action or clone in anything...What you see in this photo is part of the original photo that I took with my camera. Sure I may have boosted the color to make it how I see it...but the glow next to my son was certainly not added in. 


Blood Moon

Supposedly the last time we had a Blood Moon was in 1982 and the next time will be 2033. I certainly don't claim to be a professional in the field of photographing the moon but I had to give it a try. It's not the clearest, sharpest, closest, etc...but hey, it was fun trying! 


I had the opportunity to photograph some of the Company and Pre-Company ballet girls at my daughters dance studio last weekend. These girls are absolutely amazing! So much talent, full of life, and very intelligent. If you ever have the opportunity to attend a Ballet, I highly recommend it. A lot of hard work goes into these types of productions! Occasionally I help backstage and these girls always keep me on pointe! (pun intended) 


Call me Spiritual, Call me Crazy, Call me whatever you think....but the number 21 pops up in my life when it comes to people. I used to think it started with my dad's passing, 7-21. Then one day it was like....OH YEAH, my daughter was born on the 21st. So there were two relations of the number 21. After that I didn't really think too much about it.

The father of my children, unexpectedly, passed away recently on 3-21. Once again, that number...21. I frequently see this number as a whole (321, just like 721). I see it in the time, in license plates, item numbers, etc. 

For whatever reason, I started to wonder why my son didn't have 21 in his birthday, but how coincidental could we get? Except he does. He was born on 8-13....8+13 = 21. That number again.

If you're wondering, birthday doesn't equal 21 and I wasn't born on the 21st. I suppose it is possible that I could pass away on the 21st of some month in some year. However, if it "helps", the year my dad passed away, (which I mentioned in the other blog), I found a heart shaped rock on my 21st birthday. TWENTY-ONE! <---it's there again. ***UPDATE!!!*** I'VE RECENTLY BEEN MADE AWARE: If you add, subtract, multiply, divide, etc.  the numbers in my SSN in a certain order it equals 21. (Obviously for privacy purposes,  I don't want anyone to know my SSN so I am not listing it, nor am I going to be specific on which method of math is used). MIND. BLOWN. !!!

What does it mean? I'm not sure. I know that it drives me crazy to think about it sometimes trying to analyze its meaning. I am confident: Everything happens for a reason.