Those I Love

Bay Saint Louis, Mississippi

Friends, fun and home.  That is my absolute favorite thing to photograph.  I had the chance to visit my beautiful friend Ann Madden this last weekend.  She is probably one of the funniest people I have ever met.  Not only did I spend time with her, but my other two friends, Katy Tuttle and Kim Turner Smith, joined in on the fun.  We all went down to visit Ann and explore Bay Saint Louis and enjoy her gallery, Smith and Lens.  We each had a couple pieces in her show, Wonderland.  Really I wanted to see this place for myself.  It did not disappoint.

Family portrait, yellow house

Cutest family ever.

yellow house, front porch, kid with a trombone, #stacieannsmith,

The trombone made great noises.


This is my favorite kitchen. I have photographed many kitchens and have never come across one with so much character and warmth. I need to spend more time in the south.

southern kitchen, beadboard, rustic, aprons

A story in every inch of this place.

girl brushing hair getting ready to be photographed

and art everywhere

girls bedroom full of art, #stacieannsmith

dreamiest kids room.


photograph between drying drop cloths, black and white, #stacieannsmith

The drop cloths pulled us all in. It reminded me of bit of the corner Penn built… a lot less controlled. Much more imperfect, but still cool.


sisters on back porch, #stacieannsmith

So much greenery everywhere. Palms and lush, tropical foliage everywhere I turned. I want this porch and the light just makes it over the top.

photograph of a girl on backyard swing

So much energy. Donuts eaten before photographing guaranteed laughter and movement. I highly recommend sugar before a shoot… only if you can keep smiling with the crazy that follows.

Day in the Life: Leaving the Mid Mod Nest

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I have often day dreamed about visiting friends who live in far away places. Jet setting to visit a new local and enjoy the company of my good friends. My “Those I Love” personal project was born from these dreams.
I have been lucky enough to reconnect with several friends lately, one of which I didn’t photograph! We met after the sun went down, that is my excuse… and really, I get shy about asking for a photo. I am keenly aware that people aren’t super happy to be in front of the camera… especially when the idea is sprung on them. So I leave my camera in its bag, and kick myself later that I didn’t get even one photo of my friend (who lives in Mexico City).
But a few months ago I reached out to our good friends in the Bay Area who had mentioned wanting photographs in their Eichler home. A day in the life. Their son is about to leave the nest so we made it happen.
While there I felt like I was photographing my own family. Being a bit intrusive, but no one seemed to mind. It helps that I’ve been photographing them since we met 8 years ago. Being able to focus on their family and their dynamic the entire weekend was such a blessing and so much fun. I really feel like I created an important body of work… if only for them.  Here is a link to their whole session, if you care to see. #DayInALife #documentaryPhotography #eichler #MidCenturyModern #BayAreaHome

One of the main features of an Eichler home are the mahogany paneled walls throughout, along with floor to ceiling windows allowing for amazing light. #DayInALife #documentaryPhotography #eichler #MidCenturyModern #BayAreaHome

Expression and gesture. #DayInALife #documentaryPhotography #eichler #MidCenturyModern #BayAreaHome

Eichler homes more often than not boast an atrium that can be seen from every common space in the house. So many windows. The cats love the atrium. #DayInALife #documentaryPhotography #eichler #MidCenturyModern #BayAreaHome

The orange exterior door leads to the atrium. If you haven’t walked through an Eichler, you need to. They are pretty amazing. Just stay away from any with stucco… a stucco exterior is not original would probably not hold the original details inside. #DayInALife #documentaryPhotography #eichler #MidCenturyModern #BayAreaHome

I joined in on family dinner. William suggested I get it from above. He’s a pretty great photographer and I can’t wait to see what he does in the next few years.

Those I Love: Kim

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This post is part of a Portrait blog circle. Please click through to see the other talented photographers’ portraits that were taken in September. The next photographer in the circle is
my good friend Pamela Joye.

I cannot wait to keep photographing old friends.  Kim is my oldest friend. Not by age, duh, but by the length of time I’ve known and loved her.  When we moved to Mission Viejo, she was the gregarious girl who loved the classroom rat and happily showed me how to let said rat lick peanut butter off my finger.  Classroom rat, ugh.  But she WAS a loved pet.  Now I am lucky enough to have Kim in my life, and because of Kim I get to know Lance too.  I only wish I could spend more time with them both.  I think one of Kim’s most obvious skills, at least when you are hungry and visiting from out of town, is knowing just where the best dumpling house or poke place or Italian or any of the best food establishments can be found.  She also knows the art of gift giving.  Every time she visits, our shelves are stocked with see’s or the best banana chips EVER… I think she out did herself when she brought us 20 avocados this summer from her Garden of Edan backyard tree.  Seriously, her back yard is like the Garden.  Someday I’ll photograph that.  But really, Kim is the best at making me feel happy. She lets you know she cares and wants you around. All her giving shows how much she loves life and those around her. I consider myself lucky to have seen Lance and Kim twice this year.  Kim, you are one of my very favorites.  Ever. #portrait #denverphotographer #ThoseILove #portrait #denverphotographer #ThoseILove

Those I Love: Good Leaders

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This post is part of a Portrait blog circle.  Please click through to see the other talented photographers’ portraits that were taken in August.  The next photographer in the circle is
Linsey Stuckey

We need good leaders and teachers. This fact was made clear to me only after my survival of adolescence. Sure, having someone interesting teach a class is much better than the teacher who only talks to the overhead projector and doesn’t make eye contact (geometry… that guy next to me became a huge crush because of bad teaching). But I didn’t, and couldn’t, see the impact my teachers and youth leaders made on my life until years later.
A couple years ago I was asked to give a talk about mothers, on mother’s day. It was a disaster. I blubbered through the whole thing. Terrible. I shared about all the women in my life up to that point. When I took the time to reflect, Alana, who was one of my youth leaders at church, stood out. There were others. I remember eating a whole bowl of watermelon with one of my “mom” friends. We talked about life and it’s teenage frustrations. My own personal therapist. I wonder where she is today. I digress.
For Alana, it was the trust she placed in me when I didn’t feel anyone at church thought I could be good or spiritual… which was probably true, but still. Her faith in me helped me to see who I could become. I could see my worth, and at 17 self worth is somewhere between “I am so much cooler than that dumb girl” and “all the dumb girls are with the cute guys” (yes, I was pretty boy crazy). I felt like one on the fringe, disenfranchised, I didn’t fit into the Mormon mold… still don’t, really. Everyone needs love, even the weirdos. She gave it freely to the little girl in black baggy clothes and for that I thank her.
While in California for my 20 year reunion Alana gave me a couple hours of her day and allowed me to photographer her. Thanks, lady! It was so nice to catch up. #ThoseILove

Those I Love

A year and a half ago I listed several projects I wanted to photograph in my creative journal, thanks to Deb Schwedhelm’s workshop.  One that has stuck in my mind I had entitled “Those I Love”.  Since leaving the Boston area (where we had made so many of our good friends) I have dreamed of traveling across the country and the world to visit those that I have loved.  So I made a list.  This list includes friends here in Denver, friends from High School, friends from College and Baltimore.  All those who have touched me at any time in my life.  The list is long and would take nearly forever to photograph. My first would have been this lady, second this guy and his family.

Friday I was able to hang with another of those on my list.  This crew: #ThoseILove #DenverPhotographer

We got to hang with the boys a couple weeks ago at BMX camp, but Friday we spent some time with them all. It was only a little while with everyone at their house and on our way home, I heard Zed complain “We were only there for like 10 minutes.” I reminded him that we were with them for about 4 hours.

I hope that while I’m in California I can connect with my friends now living in Mexico and old friends from HS at my reunion. Yes, I’m an old lady. It’s official.