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Angela and Paul – Engagement Photos

Angela and I are both from the ‘burgh, but we met in college at JMU.  She and I lived together one year and played rugby together – oh MWR how I miss you!  Angela is best known for her nickname (which I won’t mention) – a nickname she totally did not deserve to get, but was so funny it stuck anyways.  I think my best memory with her (other than rookie night) is when we both had to drive home to Pittsburgh for winter break and there was a HUGE snowstorm.  81 was not plowed at all, and I think at our fastest we were probably going 25 mph.  The few other cars we saw were mostly in snowdrifts on the side of the road (I’m not lying).  After hours of attempting to drive, we ended up stopping in Martinsburg, WV for the night.  We found a hotel that actually had the parking lot plowed, and we were able to trek through knee-deep snow over to Pizza Hut, which was the only restaurant open.  We tried to mix whiskey (sorry parents!) and hot chocolate packets in the coffee mugs in the hotel room (mixed with our toothbrushes because we didn’t have anything else).  It was pretty disgusting – I don’t recommend trying it.  It was such a crazy day but so fun, and I don’t think I will ever forget it.

Paul went to JMU too, and is also a Madison Rugby alum.  At least in my mind, Paul is best known for yelling AWKWARD at the top of his lungs at inappropriate times.  I’m pretty sure that he could make anyone laugh if he tried.  Paul and I have become much better friends and he always keeps me up to date on local politics and entertainment news.  If I hear about something going on in the news, and I don’t have the whole story, I know he will.  Paul is actually doing most of the wedding planning, and he blogs about it here.  Paul is also my go-to person for social networking questions or random thoughts.

When they told me they were engaged, I couldn’t have been happier (although they hadn’t gone “Facebook public” so I couldn’t go around telling people).  They are some of our best friends and Bart and I are so lucky to have them in our lives.  Thanks for letting me take your engagement photos.

Here are some of my favorites:

Friends and family can view their full album here.

Posted in engagements |

Name/Word Prints

This started as a craft project.  I had gotten tickets to the Redskins-Steelers game as an anniversary gift for Bart a few years ago.  I was buying them from a friend, and planned to “run into” her while Bart and I were at the grocery store (a grocery store we don’t normally go to).  I claimed I owed her money from something rugby related, and THAT was why I was handing her $140 in cash while in the checkout line…  Sketchy, right?  (and SBJ, you definitely didn’t make things any LESS sketchy).

Anyways, with this massively awkward attempt to hide something, and because I thought Bart knew SBJ had season tickets, I was positive he knew what his gift was.  Last minute, I decided to try to throw him off by making a name sign of our last name.  He loved it.  (I kept waiting for him to seem disappointed or confused, but it turns out he had no idea I had bought Redskins tickets.  I had gotten all stressed out for nothing, but what else is new…)

We hung our name sign up, and every time someone noticed it, they would either say they wanted one or that I should sell them.  Well, now I do!  It is kind of a fun side item for me, but I thought the holidays were a perfect time to offer them.  Here is what I wrote in my Holiday Newsletter:

Searching for that special gift?

Why not a customized name or word print?
These are available in black and white,
neon, or primary colors.  Pricing depends
on the number of letters and the print size,
ranging from desktop accessory to poster
size.  A 7-letter word in black and white (a
10″x30″ print size) is only $40!

Orders can be placed with me directly and
picked up in Fairfax in only 4 business days.
If you don’t mind waiting 7-14 days, you can
have your order shipped directly to an
address of your choice, with no shipping
!  Options such as framing,
mounting, and gift packing are also

Is your creative mind spinning?
Feel free to contact me to see if what you
are imagining is possible!

If you are interested in ordering, you can contact me.

Posted in Business, Gifts |

Quick Pic – Angela and Paul

Posted in engagements |

Molly and Kevin – Engagement Photos

Molly and I met in college when she started playing rugby (some of you may know her as “German Molly”).  We both ended up in DC, but could never seem to meet up.  Molly jokes that she buys all of her friends, so she said she hired me so we could hang out. :)

Molly told me that she and Kevin met contra dancing.  A group of friends went together and Molly wanted to go back but no one else did.  They had just met, but Kevin agreed to go back with her.  How cool is that?

It was great to reconnect with Molly and to meet Kevin.  They were engaged at Tarara Winery so we went back there to take engagement photos.

These are some of my favorites:

At the entrance to Tarara:

The outdoor bar had wine descriptions that we borrowed for a few photos:

On the way back up from the lake:

In the trees by the lake:

I told them we were going to fake a “stolen moment” and after I shot a few, I heard Kevin tell Molly that she was beautiful.  Awesome, right?  I thought so too, which is why I yelled, “Aw!  It IS a stolen moment!”  This is the result:

Near the entrance to the tasting room:

Yay!  We’re done with photos!

Thanks Molly and Kevin – I had a great time and hope you did too!

Posted in engagements |

Ryan Family

The Ryan family won a portrait session with me through the Teardrops to Rainbows charity auction.  The next morning Shawna contacted me asking if I could possibly do a session with them the next weekend.  They get family photos taken at the same time every year, in places that are special to them.  What a great idea!  These are some of my favorites from that day.  Thanks for bidding on me :)

Posted in Charity, Families |

Small Business Saturday/Shop Local

Saturday November 27th is Small Business Saturday.  American Express is promoting this by offering a $25 credit to cardholders who pledge to shop at a small business that day.  They are also offering $100 in free Facebook advertising to the first 10,000 business owners who sign up.  (Yes, please!)  So while I’m excited to have free advertising and the prospect of more clients, I also thought it would be good to promote some small local businesses that I love.

So pretty much everyone I know buys their gear at Adorama, B&H, Amazon, or eBay.  I am definitely NOT saying that there is anything bad about these places because I purchase things from them also.  But in the spirit of supporting small businesses, I thought I would share my favorite two local photography supply stores.  Ace Photo in Ashburn, VA is awesome.  They have TONS of stuff, are very helpful, and have extremely competitive prices.  They even have an on location studio you can rent!  Photocraft (Embassy Camera in DC) is in Burke, VA.  It is a really small store, but they have GREAT prices (just an example, I got a new body and new lens for less than they were REFURBISHED on Adorama).  Neither of these places sells any gray market goods, and it is really cool to be able to walk into a store and look at what you are buying.  They both have rentals, also.  The big difference between them is size:  Ace is huge and they usually have things in stock.  I got a slightly better deal at Photocraft, but what I wanted had to be ordered.

Not at all related to photography, but if you are out shopping at small businesses and looking for good pizza in the area the two best places, hands down, are Pomodoro Pizza Pasta & More in Fairfax Towne Center, and Tony’s Pizza in Fairlakes.  Try them out – you can thank me later :)

Posted in Business |

DC Smug

I attended the DC Smug launch meeting Monday night, and I couldn’t be more excited.  I got to meet a TON of very talented people, and it was so encouraging to hear people who are excited about sharing information and helping others.  I had kind of hit a brick wall (repeatedly) trying to network with photographers in this area.  I would search for local photographers, follow their blogs, and try to get in contact with them, but wasn’t having much luck.  I must have just been contacting the wrong people, because at the meeting it seemed like EVERYONE was willing/wanted to meet.

The speaker was Kristi Odom, and let me tell you, she is AMAZING.  She is so accomplished and while she has every reason to be stuck up about her talent and her work, it seems like she is the exact opposite.  I really hope I get to talk to her more in the future – what a person to learn from!

I can’t wait for the next meeting, and the one after, and the next, and the one after that…

Posted in Business |

Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear

I am late in posting this, but Bart, Calvin and I went to the Rally… well, kind of.  We tried to, but couldn’t hear/see anything on stage.  That’s okay, though, because this was some of the best people watching I have ever done, and I LOVE to people watch.  (I also like to make up conversations for the people I am watching, but that is a different story…)

I really liked this sign, and the woman holding it wasn’t yelling or doing anything else to draw attention to herself – she even held the sign mostly in front of her face.

No Winking

This is one of my shots of the crowd.  I jumped up on a brick wall, but still wasn’t tall enough to shoot over some people.  For some reason I thought the Begin Bike Route sign in the middle of this massive crowd was hilarious.  I don’t know why, but it is still making me laugh.

People, people everywhere!

There was this group of dancing robots that I took a series of.  This is my favorite, though, because I caught the one girl with a huge grin.


I have most of the photos posted on Facebook, but you can also view them here.

Posted in Uncategorized |

Quick Pic – Molly and Kevin

Molly and Kevin @ Tarara

Posted in engagements |

Preview from today’s session

Posted in Families |