It's something that most of us seek and something that most of us fear. No matter what, it's something that will change you. No matter how big or small the adventure is, the experience is something you will have forever. Memories to keep and look back on. The perfect opportunity to pack up your camera and capture those moments.
March 17th, 2018 St. Patrick's Day
Instead of the usual green beer and large crowds, Kat, myself, and loved ones decided to spend St.Patrick's day a little different this year. It was not a snowy winter, but the cold kept the itch for the outdoors unscratched. So we ended up staying in a lot and watched youtube videos that featured the great outdoors. Well, that wasn't enough.
My cousin's husband had mentioned to us in late January that they were planning on hiking Devil's Lake in Wisconsin, just north of Madison. He had been there in the fall of 2017 with his son's boy scout troop and had been itching to go back. So Kat and I took this opportunity to explore a place we haven't been to, stretch our legs and do some outdoor photography.
March 17th was the day, and it was a glorious day. Almost too perfect.
This is the best we can do without having mountains in the midwest. I will take it.
Best view in the park.
IMO - it's not an adventure if there isn't a little bit of danger involved.
Overlooking the frozen Devil's Lake.
The balancing rock. A popular stop on the way up or down.
Why? Why do we take the energy to climb something? Why do we accept the challenge that leave our bodies aching and exhausted? Why do we strive to reach the top?
So we can look down.
We walk on water at the Devil's Lake.
Quartzite rocks that are purple inside. It gave an otherworldly feel.
Hundreds, maybe thousands of years ago, this quartzite cliff collapsed. Out of chaos comes beauty.
Big ass pop rocks.
At the end of the day, we were tired and hungry. Our feet hurt. Our legs were burning. Our eyes were heavy and our backs ached. Yet, we smiled because we bonded. It took about 4 hours to hike the entire lake and in those 4 hours we grew closer. We joked and told stories. We've known each other for the majority of our lives, yet were learned new things about each other that day.
This is why adventures are important. Whether it's an adventure in a park near your home, a state park in the next state over, or a remote mountain that offers solitude from the world. An adventure is with you forever.
I'm ready for the next one.
Spring has finally arrived for the year 2018 and with it the busy wedding season. As we prepare for the upcoming events I like to think back on the weddings we worked on the year before.
One of the last weddings we shot in 2017 was Laura and Eljon's wedding at the end of summer. This particular wedding was photographed by Elvin Tacdeo and Zach Spinner, and filmed by Patrick while Kat and myself were at another wedding working as well.
Even though I didn't film Laura and Eljon's wedding, I did do the editing. It's a little difficult editing a wedding that you didn't shoot. Not being present at an event, you miss out on the overall atmosphere and the vibe of the wedding couple.
For some reason, it wasn't the case with this one.
As I reviewed the footage that Patrick had filmed, I felt like I knew what the couple liked. The color scheme as well as the location gave me great insight to what kind of vibe their wedding had.
Once I felt that, I was excited to edit their video.
The crowd was one of the most fun I've seen. Their guests interacting with the man behind the camera truly made you feel like you were part of the party and not just there filming. Remember, I did not film this wedding and I got this vibe just by watching the footage.
The bride and groom truly had a great time belting out their favorite songs and guests playing air guitar just getting lost in the music. It's moments like these that remind me why shooting weddings is an honor. You get to capture things that may be forgotten due to the fast paced nature of a wedding, or due to drinking too much :)
This reminder is what gets me amped up for this year's events. Every year we shoot. We work. We get tired. Then we rest at the end of the season. The cycle repeats, but the experience is different. So here's to a successful 2018 wedding season!
Every year I always like to challenge myself by learning something new or taking what I already know to the next level. I've been seeing a lot of these Master Class commercials of professionals such as Stephen Curry, Christina Aguilera and even Gordon Ramsay, to name a few, teaching and giving lessons to what they do best. Super cool! I was drawn in when I saw a clip of Annie Leibovitz teaching and describing how even in the most set up scenes there's always something going on. For years I've always been so intrigued by her work, how she made portraits look and feel like a romantic renaissance painting.
As much as I really want to take her online classes, I don't have the budget but it's okay, I have the rest of my life to figure out her style! Or at least until I can afford to start taking her classes. Anyway, I found a youtube video of a photographer breaking down her technique so I've been practicing ever since. I don't think I'm anywhere close but it's a start and it's a new technique I'm glad I'm learning! I probably have to start playing around with my light set up now! Well, till then, here are some before and afters from photo's I've previously taken so you can see my progress, enjoy!
We like to keep our photo sessions as natural as possible but in this case, a little enhancement was necessary to bring out that cozy, fall feel, wouldn't you say?
Speaking of fall, stay tuned for our fall mini session promos!
Jp and I were so excited to have visited our friends in Wisconsin for the Baby-Q! It had been a few years actually since we all last each other but didn't really feel like it because how much we keep up with each other's lives through social media. We met Adriana and Chris before they were Adriana and Chris and now we're so excited that they will be having a little one of their own! Saturday morning, Jp and I wanted to make the most of the day since the event didn't start until 4pm. So we made a quick stop to Lake Geneva. It was a perfect sunny day, high 70's, slight breeze and not too many tourist walking around just yet. We stopped by one of our go-to bars called "Thumbs Up" for a few drinks. Jp, of course had to have his Spotted Cow fix while I wanted a refreshing Whiskey Sour. Then the guy asks me if i wanted a tall or a short! I got the tall of course! I love how only in Wisconsin I have the option of what size I want for a mixed drink...and they taxes are low!
Anyway, our bartender was from Chicago, moved to Wisconsin for a change of pace and now wants to try out Colorado. His name was Paul. After Jp and I had 2 drinks each, we happily paid our bill of $20 and headed off to Chris and Adriana's.
They warned us that their street was blocked off and that we had to park on the next street and walk, which was fine. We found parking and began to walk through the dirt road streets with caution tape surround us and dinosaur sized underground pipes. The houses were really cute and the neighborhood itself was very peaceful with lots of trees. I could see why they chose to live here, I thought to myself. As we approached their place, I was getting more and more excited to see them, then we see Chris walking down this driveway. I immediately ran up to him and gave him a big hug! He took us through the backyard and we met everybody and also saw our good friends from the city, Neddy and Dockett. I saw Adriana and gave her a big hug as well, and couldn't believe how great she looked with baby in her belly. Chris gave us the grand tour of the house and then had a few drinks, some burgers, hot dogs and good conversations. As we were talking about babies and how we would like to raise them, I loved how we both had the same idea of rather than having a birthday with gifts, instead we would take the kid traveling somewhere new every year. Instead of idolizing and anticipating gifts, they could explore and have an adventure and learn new things. And because we both believed that the baby shouldn't be treated a certain way based on their gender, instead of having "pinks" if it's a girl or "blues" if it's a boy, neutral colors were the way to go.
Not that we feel that everyone should raise their kid this way, it's just how we feel and what we believe in really :) Well the end of the day was rolling in and we still had a 2 1/2 hour drive ahead of us. We said our good byes and big hugs and vowed not to have such a long gap between visits! Until next time, we'll pay another visit to Chris, Adriana and baby!