Friday, January 30, 2015

At the Start

It's been a busy January for me with requests for new head shots.  I love that kind of session! I've done them for realtors, dancers, dating sites, business people and most recently, this budding actor! He's headed off to college next year and will be majoring in musical theater! Auditions for various schools are this weekend, so he needed to start with a headshot.  We got together last weekend and had a session.  Though it was cold, we had some gorgeous winter light to work with. He was such a trooper taking his jacket on and off for the photos and braving the less than tropical temperatures.

This last shot is one I didn't show him in his final gallery as it clearly would not be one he would use.  However, I still love it!  An in-between moment of laughter. If I'm having fun, then everyone else should be too!

And that's a wrap!  
Best of luck on Sunday.  
We look forward to seeing you on stage soon!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

4.52 My Happy Place (well, one of them)

For those of you just joining in, the photo project I've chosen this year is Project 52....52 weeks of Self Portraits.  Yep, this will make sure I get behind the camera each week.  I'm planning to have my kids in those photos a few times too, with me, of course!

So, this is one of my happy places.  Sitting on our living room couch, computer on my lap, a kitty behind my legs (see that splash of white back there), playing with/editing photos.  While I do have an office in my home, I don't always work there. I love the light and warmth in this room. It also contains a few pieces of furniture I inherited from my grandparents, once they passed away.  See that antique tea cart on the right side of the photo? That was in my grandparents home where I used to go every summer while I was growing up. It makes me feel like I have a little part of them with me all the time and makes my heart happy.

Working on a couch, in jeans, with my fur ball..what else could I ask for?  Here, I was finishing up putting head shots together for a client.  He's in his Senior year of high school, auditioning for colleges for next year, wanting to major in musical theater!  Send some positive vibes his way on Sunday, if you are so inclined.

I feel so truly fortunate that this is the life I'm leading.  I'm one very lucky girl.

Until next week (or really later this week, since I'm posting this one late)....

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

3.52 Me and Coffee

So, I don't consider myself a coffee drinker. Which is silly because many of you know that I spend a lot of time in coffee shops.  In my defense, I don't like to drink coffee that actually tastes like coffee. I often say I drink "foofy" coffee. By that I mean lattes. With flavoring.  So that I can't actually taste the coffee.  What can I say, it works for me.

Last year, I met a friend at, of course, a coffee shop. She asked me if go for the coffee or the atmosphere. She hit the nail on the head. I go for the atmosphere.  Since I work from home, by myself, I sometimes like to go out and about just to be around people, even if I don't talk to anyone. But, let's be honest, chances are I'll have a conversation with at least one person, even if it's a quick one.  It makes me feel like I'm a part of what's happening in the world around me.

I've had a bit of time to kill during my son's rehearsals for The Who's Tommy at the Paramount Theatre, which started it's run last Wednesday.  I found myself at a nearby coffee cafe, called Two Brothers, when I had about a 2 hour wait for my kiddo to be done. For Christmas, I got this ridiculously cool coffee mug and try and to bring it along with me whenever I remember.  I love drinking out of a coffee lens mug.

So, here I am, in (one version) of a nutshell.  A latte, inside a lens coffee mug at a coffee shop, computer in hand, editing photos. My happy place!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

It's Showtime!

Today's the day!!!  At 1:30 this afternoon, the first preview of Tommy begins.  It's been a long process and an incredibly short one, all at the same time.  My son's audition for The Who's Tommy at the Paramount Theater first took place back at the very end of the July.  As we were leaving, I has a quick thought that perhaps I should document that day, that it might be the start of something very special.  As most people know, in the world of theater, anything can happen. There was certainly no guarantee he was going to be cast, but I took the photo anyway, just in case.

Two days later, we got the email that they wanted to see him at callbacks.  We'd been watching my email obsessively, as we knew we'd hear either way about whether or not they wanted to see him again.  I was sitting at a stoplight when I saw the email pop up on my phone that we'd been waiting for.  I quickly turned off the main road and parked my car on a side street so my little guy and I could read the message together.  It said, "The Tommy auditions were a huge success and everyone on the Paramount team would like to thank you for being here!  We were so happy to see Peyton!  We would like to call back Peyton for the role of Little Tommy."   There was a bit more after that but that was all we needed to see. We jumped up and down and hugged and shared our excitement.  And, I made have shed a few tears.  :)

From there, we had more waiting.  The callback date was finally sent a few weeks later and on his first day of school, off he went to be seen again.  He felt it went really well, but again, no guarantees. You never know what the directors are looking for.  We were told it would be awhile before we  heard, as the director had a few other kids to see who hadn't been able to make it that day.

And then, on September 19th, we got the call we'd been waiting for! The Paramount wanted to cast Peyton as the 4 year old Tommy!  He was in school when this news was delivered so I headed over in the afternoon to let him know in person.  Holy cow! His first professional theater gig!!  We stopped in front of the theater later that day to take a quick photo. I mean, how could we not?!

Shortly thereafter, we received paperwork and music and his contract.  But, nothing would be begin again until December 22nd.  And then, it all sped up to mock 240 speed.  Three weeks of rehearsals to put the whole thing together.  David Schlumpf, who plays Captain Walker - Tommy's Dad, was the very first face Peyton and I saw as we entered the rehearsal space that first day.  He had the friendliest smile, reached out and shook both our hands and made us feel comfortable immediately.  That's how it's been the whole time with everyone we've met.  These two have since become buddies. I love it!

And now it's TODAY!  The first preview.  I'm so excited I can hardly stand it. And I'm so very, very proud of my little guy. What an incredible experience this has been for him so far.  From the director, Jim Corti, to the entire team at the Paramount, all of Peyton's co-actors, the stage crew and the other families, everyone has been amazing.  We are so very, very lucky to have this incredible theater pretty much in our backyard.  Peyton has made some great new friends in the process.  I have too! (the moms rock!) 

So here we go!  Off to see Tommy! For anyone who would like to see the show, it runs from today, January 14th through February 15th. There are 8 shows a week happening Wednesdays through Sundays. Matinees also take place on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets can be purchased at or by calling 603.896.6666.  Hope to see you there!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

2.52 Theater Mom

Life is crazy right now. Good crazy.  I'd always rather be so busy I don't know which was is up than be sitting around with nothing to do. This year has started off at mock 240 speed!  Two kids, each in their own shows, with two different rehearsal schedules and overlapping tech weeks.  I really have to concentrate to figure out who needs to go where when and how they are all going to get there and back.  One day at a time. That's all any of us can do.

Normally, when school is scheduled, I want the kids to go to school. But, we've had 2 "cold" days so far due to sub zero wind chills. Truth be told, I'm kinda happy about it this time around.  The kids have late nights with their shows and so the extra sleep and rest isn't a bad thing!

One of the most exciting days for my daughter is when tech week hits the point of costumes and make up. This year, they are doing The Addams Family.  She's playing Young Wednesday and an ancestor.  Hence, the white makeup. There was lots of giggling during this entire process of applying the make up for the first time!

I can hardly wait to see my girl do her thing, up on the stage. I'm one proud Mommy!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

A Very Special Ceremony

This blog post is SO long overdue!  But, as always, better late than never.

Last September (yes, September..see? I told you), I was lucky enough to photograph a Bat Mitzvah with a friend of mine. There's something so fun about doing a job with someone who shares your passion for photography.  We started out in the morning at the Synagogue and then headed to the wonderful celebration afterwards!  It was beautiful and moving and emotional and I felt honored to be there. Here's a peek into the day.

Photographing life is one of my very favorite things to do!  So, I believe shooting events will be working their way into my shooting schedule much more so this year than in past years!

Congratulations on such a momentous milestone in your life!  

Friday, January 2, 2015

1.52 I've decided.

So, I finally decided on this year's photography project.  It's one I originally tossed around in my head but then I kept looking for something else. That ought to teach me to go with my gut the first time around.  Seems I have to learn that lesson over and over and over and...well, you get the idea.  I've been feeling relieved to be done with my Project 365 from last year.  That was my second go around and it felt oh so very different from the first time. The thing about that project though was that some days I was inspired and some days I simply was NOT. One thing I hate to do is to force a photograph.  When it's an every day thing, you don't have much wiggle room. Nonetheless, I limped to the finish line and did it!  I love the sense of accomplishment and also the sense of freedom I have now this year.  The joy of bringing my camera places began to feel like an obligation, not so much of an exciting option. But, I know I'll be happy I did when I put that book of all the photos together this year (one of my 2015 goals).

So, I start anew.  And this year, I've decided to do a Project 52 again but with a focus. It will be 52 weeks of Self Portraits. Not to worry, I'm not going to force everyone to look at my face 52 times.  By self portrait I mean a photo that represents me, who I am and not just my mug. I think I'll definitely be challenged to come up with different ideas which is part of the point of a project. And, at the end of the year, it should be a pretty cool collection, I think.  I've never shied away from being in front of the camera, so that's not an issue. And, I feel pretty strongly that all women should get in front of the lens at some point - to celebrate themselves, to be proud of who we are and, if you have children, to give them the gift of being IN photos with them.  (so, I imagine you'll see one or two of those this year).

I hope you'll pop in from time to time to check this out. Maybe you'll be inspired to get in front of the lens too!

And so begins the journey...

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Walking into the future

A New Year is upon us.  And for whatever reason, I'm so looking forward to this year, in a way I haven't before.  There is a wonderful sense of adventure and optimism in my soul!

I've decided to actually write down some goals this year.  A few are personal. A few are business related.  All are doable. At least I think so sitting here, in a great little coffee shop on January 1st, 2015.  I do know better than to set a goal of writing in this blog on a regular basis because I've come to accept that's never going to happen.  UNLESS, I tie my blog to whatever photography project I decide on for this year and post it here.  That seems more feasible.  (I'm thinking I should probably decide on that today).   I don't consider myself much of a writer. For those of you who know me personally, you know I write like I talk.  But hopefully, my photos do most of the speaking for me.

I love the sense of a new beginning that comes with the start of a new year.  It gives us a clean slate, a great jumping off point for any projects or goals we want to start achieving.  My daughter is starting the year off by performing in her 7th stage show, this one being The Addams Family, through our local Park District Performing Arts program. My son (seen below, heading into rehearsal) is starting off his year performing as the 4 year old Tommy in The Who's Tommy at the Paramount Theater...his first professional gig!  I'm so proud of both of them!  Driving for rehearsals and tech weeks and shows might get a little crazy. But, I find that if we do it one day at a time, it all tends to work out.

So, here we go!  May 2015 be a great year for all of us!