I think children are fascinating. They are curious about everything and get into everything. At a very young age you don’t care about finding yourself and establishing your identity, which is something that seems so important as you get older. You just want to know the names of objects and why things work. Everything is simple when you are a kid because all you know is living in the moment.
I think it’s interesting that so many people believe photographing young children is difficult. You don’t have to tell them how to act because they don’t know how to be anyone but themselves. Everything you photograph is who they are, whether they are laughing, crying, shying away, or just contently sitting and ignoring you. Photographing family portraits is one thing, but capturing a personality is quite easy.
These are only a fraction of the images I took. My boyfriend’s nephew and niece are insanely adorable and full of expression. I sat on the floor for about 30 minutes with my camera watching them entertaining themselves with a box. Kids are crazy. And after photographing her kids all day I bet their mom thought I was a little crazy too…
I literally went on a day trip to Mammoth. After graduation I went home to San Diego, and my dad asked if I wanted to drive up to Mammoth where he had to do some measurements on a cabin and other general contractory stuff. I was in a car for a total of 14 hours to spend half a day there. Was it worth it? Of course. Got to spend some quality time with the pops, and I was able snap the most delightful picture of a chipmunk stuffing his fat little cheeks. I was no kidding, 2 and a half-ish fee away from him. Obviously he knew he was cute, and knew I was there to capture his cuteness (I would have actually captured him and taken him home if it wasn’t, you know, against the law…). Aside from the chipmunk shot, which was easily the highlight of my day, the rest of Mammoth was gorgeous. Everything looked so crisp. The place was just begging for snow, and I can only imagine how beautiful it is with a white blanket. The air was still and sounds were seldom. I felt small in such a vast landscape. It’s strange how nature develops, where everything, the rocks, the trees, the mountains, are perfectly placed.
After a bit of adventuring with my good high school friend, Ian, and his Grandma (my dad was working on their cabin), we set out for lunch at the Yodler Restaurant. Boy do I appreciate a pretzel larger than the size of my face paired with a cold beer, especially after a bit of walking. The place was right next to the ski lifts, which looked weird hanging above a grassy slope. But I hardly paid attention to my surroundings as I was too busy stuffing my face. Did I mention my friends call me chip (short for chipmunk…) Thanks Tara.
Lastly, we arrived at the cabin, and I was greeted by a fat dog named George, and a wiggly little guy named Bob. I fell in love with both. Just look at George’s underbite. Can you handle it? I can’t. If it were up to me, I would have happily left Mammoth with two dogs and a chipmunk. But all I have are these pictures…sigh. Maybe one day…
This past weekend, on a whim I made a trek back home to San Diego. I left Friday at 1:15pm. Never again. The traffic alone is enough to keep me from moving to LA. Oh how I love you Santa Barbara and your less sucky traffic. Anyways, if you remember my last post, I talked about my younger brother and shared images from my own twist on senior portraits. It was a rad sesh, and if you haven’t checked it out you should! Well this week, I am going to share images of my younger sister, Oni. See, this past weekend was homecoming. As you all know, it’s a very important time in high school. It’s hectic, and the whole day leading up to the dance is a blur of makeup, hairspray, and last minute essential shopping trips. I guess I can only speak from one perspective, but I am sure the guys are just as involved…right? 🙂 My usually curly haired sister actually looked like me with straightened locks. Usually no one can tell we are related! Of course, as expected I was her own personal photographer for the day. And of course, I took the pictures I wanted.
Yes, Homecoming can be a day of mild drama, a competition for the shortest possible dress and boys who feel indifferent about the whole ordeal. But Homecoming can also be a moment for friends, and enjoying a time in life where it seems you can conquere anything (especially your look for homecoming!) Because the moment high school is over, that goes right out the window doesn’t it? 🙂
I always tell my family they are lucky to have me, you know, so I can artfully document their lives through photography (and then post it to the internet 🙂 ) I happily jumped at the opportunity to take Zeno’s senior pictures, because not only is he a natural at modeling, but it was also a chance for me to hang out with my younger siblings and catch up on their lives. A huge part of me is sad because I missed most of their high school years, so I try to make up for it whenever I can. So on a Saturday morning Zeno, Oni and I drove to a huge open field with tall golden grass. It’s the grass that looks like waves when wind rushes through it. If you walk across it you come to a cliff overlooking the ocean. It’s one of my favorite places in Santa Barbara, and it always reminds me why I love it here so much. The mornings here are a bit on the gloomy side, which is perfect for photography. The gorgeous even lighting and the moody grey tones in the ocean and sky; everything about it is peaceful. It’s the sort of magical place you want to tell stories in.
Of course, I had Zeno pose for more than the typical senior pictures. I wanted to capture more of who he is: A young man who is contemplative, and comfortable in the silence of his own thoughts. He craves adventure and new experiences. He is an artist, motivated by the sounds of life that surround him. He plays a multitude of instruments. I always found us to be very similar, in that we both have these creative passions. Though we are both quiet on the introverted side, we both dream of sharing our creative visions with the world. He is ending one chapter and on the verge of another. It’s a time in life we are all familiar with. I am very proud of him, because he has always stuck true to the person he is. I don’t know if many people can truthfully say that.
Now I am going to text him the link to this post so he can read it. He needs to be reminded from time to time how much of an awesome and loving sister I am 🙂
A couple of weeks ago I was asked to shoot a catalog for Asher Market. Upon looking up the company (which is owned by two awesome sisters), I instantly became obsessed with their products. Not that “Oh super cute I’d love to have that” sort of obsessed. I justified needing every product on that site. EVERY. PRODUCT. Sure, I live in “sunny” Santa Barbara. But have you ever heard of June gloom? It gets chilly here in the mornings! How darling I would look strolling down State Street, all toasty in my new poncho, maybe a vanilla latte in hand. Of course, I would also need to have all of their shawls and scarves, you know, for when its not cold enough for a poncho but I still need to be stylish and warm. All the colors, for all the days of the week. It’s not asking for much…and when I get home, I have my choice of cozy alpaca blankets to get my snuggle on.
I guess what I am saying is, I wish it were a bit colder here. Perfect weather all the time is fine and dandy when you don’t have these ponchos to wear. But I do.
Our lovely model was Sophie Yamauchi! This gorgeous lady, get this, has never modeled before. Whaaaaaat. She worked it better than many other models I have worked with. The shoot went flawlessly. A couple of the images you see here are outtakes from that day. The chosen catalog images should be up soon on the Asher Market website at https://www.ashermarket.com/
and you should also follow Asher Market on Instagram: @ashermarket
But what you should do, before bouncing from his post, is check out the products. Become obsessed like me. That way, I know it’s not just me 🙂
And here’s our little crew: Ashley Hayes (one of the owners), Sophie and me! I’m actually not short. I’m an average 5′ 5.5″ Sophie is just crazy tall.
During weekend weekend I created bio videos for two awesome photographers. Both lovely, but with extremely different styles. If you remember from yesterday, Alexis photographs people with an interesting take on lifestyle and portrait photography. Today I am excited to share Sarah Brooks’ bio video. She is a fine art photographer and seriously just the cutest thing you will ever meet. She is what you would imagine a fine art photographer to be: a lover of film, cats and coffee. But unlike many fine artists, she is not afraid to share her work and passion for film with everyone. She is moving away to Oregon, and though I know she will create amazing art out there, I am sad she is leaving 😦
Why can’t all the graduates just hang here in Santa Barbara with me?
I ran around all day with this lady creating a bio video for her! It was extremely easy to capture her easygoing personality and eagerness to work with a camera. Her style is very go with the flow until she gets the exact shot. Though a bio video’s main objective is to show potential clients who the photographer is, Alexis’ bio video just doesn’t do justice to her actual work, which by the way is amazing. You definitely need to meander over to her tumblr blog at http://alexisrenson.tumblr.com/. Her portraits go beyond photographing the people in front of her, and her unusual perspective is very inspiring to creative minds.
I browsed her blog just now and noticed I’m in a couple of shots! Holla!
Woah guys, college is no longer. I just blinked and it was over. Am I an adult yet? Hardly. The reality check hasn’t been too harsh, and I am testing the waters of freelance photography. I will admit it’s all a little daunting. Not only do you have to be good at what creative services you are providing, but you have to be good at selling who you are. It’s no secret in the world of photography that people hire those they like to be around. You can’t really blame them though. Who wants to hang out with a complete schmuck during a full day shoot?
Drifting thoughts aside, I’d like to share an image I created that’s pretty quintessential of the feels that I feel…literally all the time. Obviously it has multiple meanings because I am all about ambiguity. Do you ever feel one moment you are drowning and the next you are like “Wait, no guys I’m totally cool. Seriously, I got this.” Story of my life. My ability to grasp on motivation towards creative endeavors is only so so at the moment. It’s not that I am burnt out, but once in a while my brain needs a break. I have to reconnect to the drive that landed me in this position (graduate of photo school. woo!) in the first place. Once you find it you have to nurture it. Sometimes we fall off that path because we learn so many rights and wrongs from so many people who have a dead set way of doing things. One moment we think we are creating all the right things then BAM! someone says something else is correct. You get pulled in so many directions. You stumble. You doubt the path you once believed in.
You know what? Forget them. You do you boo. No one knows you more than you.
Art is so subjective anyway. Who’s to say what is right? I’m right, your right…only if you think so though.
But dude, I know you are. So…happy dance/ fist pump? cool! 🙂
Eyes are so symbolic. I guess its a bit cliche but I can’t help myself. If you have been following my blog thus far, you have seen my obsession with meaning, or at least some glimmer of a meaning. You want to make people think. You want to create impact, even if its only for a small moment, because the satisfaction of creating work goes beyond finishing the piece. If you are an artist, there is a part of you that lives for introducing new work into the world. The drive behind your creativity is the need to express your thoughts through mediums in the hope that someone out there gets it. Or maybe your work is the reason someone is able to finally wrap their head around an abstract idea. Finally they have found something that makes sense to them, and they have you to thank. You will probably never hear from them, but the possibility of creating that moment for anyone is enough motivation for you. It is for me. Sometimes I forget it though. Isn’t it so easy to fall into a pattern? Wake up, do life, same as yesterday, sleep.
I know I am lucky. I was fortunate to fall in love with a passion I never tire of practicing. But man oh man, recently I feel as if there is not enough time in the day. For like, anything. I graduate in less than three weeks at 21 years old. A very young 21. If I think I have no time now, I must be kidding myself (at least that’s what your thinking, am i right?). The word “adult” is strange to me. I can hardly associate myself with it. And now I have to be one. Or at least fake it till I make it, as many of our teachers are reminding us as they push us out of the classroom environment. A huge part of me is scared. I’m afraid I will lose the time to nurture my creativity, or maybe even lose my motivation. I see so many artists and photographers losing the spirit that pushed them to create because they fall into the monotony of life. They become tired, drained, burnt out. I just have to remember that I have a responsibility to myself. As does everyone with passions they love and practice. You can’t work so hard to get to a certain point and then suddenly decide you are tired. It’s an excuse not worth backing up. And you know that. I mean, I don’t know if I am talking to myself, or if anyone feels these feels, but putting it out there makes me feel better. It’s harder to break a promise that you have proof of.
I guess today you got to read the contract I created for myself to not become a worn out artist. Today I made a promise not to be a quitter. You should too, because you owe it to yourself. And I believe in you! Yes!! Now I know you are 100% committed to not being a quitter.
On a side note, thank you to everyone following my blog! I started this almost a whole year ago (HOLY COW WHAT?!), and it’s nice knowing people actually read the sporadic wordy thoughts of my brain.
I like to have meaning behind my photographs. I suppose I am deep thoughtful person… 🙂 But I think its important to keep the message a little ambiguous. Then people can apply the meaning that is most relevant to them.