being a gypsy

i just discovered this photographer, iain mckell, via a friend's pinterest board.  and his the new gypsies series takes my breath away. i connect so deeply with this photograph...

copyright iain mckell

what is it?  the fact that i feel the image is so soulful?  or maybe that i i think, this could have been a photo of me...IF i grew up as a gypsy.  and i wonder, is it as fabulous as i think it might be...growing up as a gypsy?  living the gypsy life? there's a part of me that so longs to throw all our shit away and just be gypsies.  just be free.  to be.

i'm in a bit of a funk right now.  it happens from time to time.  and with that said and the busy craziness of fall approaching, i thought it was a perfect time to get this powerful and motivational video recirculating.

the story of a charming girl

this is the story of a charming girlshe laughs out loud, sings off key and believes in taking chances she is quick and curious and playful and strong she lets her imagination run away with her she has never been one to stick to convention she is fond of daydreams that taker her places she can order a cocktail in six different languages she feels that understated is overrated

i love this video. i love the song in this video.

thanks for the share rosie.

steve, i will never love you more.** and i know... you love me more than everything.

** because i already love you more than everything too.

p.s. i really long for a (working) vintage typewriter. preferably orange or turquoise.

living creatively

if i only scrape a living, at least it's a living where i'm scraping. if there's no future in it, this is a present worth remembering.

for fires of happiness and waves of gratitude. for everything that brought us to that point on earth at that moment in time, to do something worth remembering with a photograph, or a scar -i feel genuinely lucky and hand on heart say i love doing what i do. and i may never be a rich man, or live long enough, then sadly i have a tale or two for the nephews. and i dig the thought of that. - mickey smith | photographer

More Surfing Videos

saw this on my friend, heather's blog. A-MA-ZING!  the photographer - film combination is breathtaking.  i just had to share here.please take the six minutes to watch, listen and be inspired!!

the dark side of the lens (about surfing photographer mickey smith | filmed by astray films) was part of a project called short stories, established by the UK's relentless energy drink. the project challenged filmmakers to create short films that explored the lives of artists. you can see more incredible short films here.

unfortunately mr. smith's new website is coming soon. you can find his blog here.

p.s. be sure to check out heather's work too. she's not only an awesome photographer, but an equally incredible person.

beyond inspirational

be thankful.dream big. and never give up. - nick vujicic

i find the most fabulous things via friends' facebook walls, who find it via their friend's facebook wall.  and today, i saw this. A-MA-ZING...

i'd love to hear him speak in person, but just ordered the DVD.  i figure that we can watch it as a family and then pay it forward for other families to watch. a simple way to share his message and inspiration.

call it what you will

if there's one person i stalk and pretty much obsess about, longing for his next post, it's zack arias.  i've probably blogged about him three or four times in the past.  and i'm not apologizing for blogging about him yet again. he absolutely blows me away.  so talented.  i attended his one light workshop a year or two ago and he is equally amazing in person.  love his wife too.

i feel like there's so much i can learn from zack--on so many levels.  i try to soak up every bit he's willing to share.  hopefully, when i'm in tampa and a lot closer, i'll manage to see zack a time or two (workshop or something).  i don't think i could ever learn enough from that man.

so now that you know my obsession with zack's work (hope i'm not scaring you zack and meg), let me share with you his amazing post from yesterday via his new 365 project blog, DedPxl.


forever treasure

i've briefly mentioned my family's annual book on my blog before, but wanted to share more, as it's one of my most treasured items.  prints on the wall come and go.  digital files usually stay wherever they stay.  but my books...i love them so!! i look at my books often. and i share my books often. some pages make me laugh out loud.  some pages bring tears to my eyes.  as i look, read and remember.

for my book, i include my most favorite photographs from throughout the year.  i also always include notes about each kid.  for example, this year, sky's says: loves, loves, loves to draw. gifted. great student. called "so memorable" by her teacher. witty and funny. snugly. and oh so cute! is a great friend to everyone. learned to read on her own. reading at a third grade level. doesn't mind messy. loves her animal figures and stuffed animals. and has a ton of them. strong. loves gymnastics and is doing awesome. great listener. loves to make people happy. misses her san diego friends--amaya and catie. enjoying her lansing friends--kimberly and aubrey. loves to sing. shy. learned to blow bubbles with bubble gum (and was so excited about it). became a confident bike rider. started out the year only wanting to wear dresses. ended the year only wanting to wear shirts and pants.

and then the rest of the book varies from year to year--quotes, stories, drawings, etc. whatever my heart feels is needed to complete the book for that year. last year was quotes. this year was personal stories, drawings and such.

we, of course, have a copy of each book, since i started in 2006. and then we give a book every year, as a christmas gift, to our parents and a couple other very special people in our lives.

i order the book from blurb. it's not quite the quality of my client books; however, it's much, much cheaper. and when there's 90 pages and i'm purchasing five of the books, i need cheaper. anyone can use blurb.  the interface takes a bit of getting used to, but once you get it, it's really pretty easy.

so i encourage you. to make something to document your family's year. it doesn't have to be professional. it doesn't have to be digital; you could scrapbook it. just something.  because they grow to fast.  and while we try so hard to remember, we forget many of the stories.  and whatever that something is, make it yours. i's time worth spending!! and something you will forever treasure!!

and click here to see a larger | better version

just being me

i'd rather be happy every day, than sadi'd rather be laughing every day, than crying i'd rather be me, than someone i'm not. - author unknown

i was contacted a while back by this amazing photographer.

hi!  i'm seriously interested in you doing our family's photos this year.

really?  no way.  i seriously love your work. the session was scheduled.  and then rescheduled twice, due to weather (something i'm not really used to happening, having relocated from san diego and all). but thank goodness...because the session finally happened yesterday and it was such a fabulous, fabulous day.  michelle and family drove four hours for me to do their session.  needless to say, i was beyond flattered.  actually, it went more like this...

i can't believe she wants me to do her family's photographs. oh man, i'm so nervous. i really hope i don't fuck these up. i hope she's happy with what i show her. i still can't believe she wants me to do her photos.

it's hard photographing a fellow photographer's family, especially one you so admire. it's funny because you look at other photographers' work, with admiration for what they produce....knowing it's different than yours.  sometimes it makes you question what you produce.

over the days, i went back and forth thinking...

i don't shoot like her. will she be happy with the way i shoot...with what i show her?  how will i pull this off?

but in the end, i realized (again) that i have to be confident in myself and what i produce.  i am not everyone else.  i am me! and i know that i'm being wholeheartedly true to myself and giving each and every client (fellow photographer or not) all i have to give.

yesterday was a magical connection (one that i'll blog more about tomorrow) and some of my favorite photographs ever.

i'm grateful for opportunities like this. so very thankful...that she trusted me, to do this for her. so very, very blessed to be doing what i love (although sometimes i still can't believe it :-).

here's a few of my favorites...