Another session featured.  So excited about this summer session.  Being an Arizona girl, I love all things desert but I also love all things beach and the challenge in putting together an elopement here was super fun.  Thanks to an amazing style team for sharing all of their talents, and of course, to our awesome bride and groom Austin and Audra.  Here are a few of my favorites from the session but you can see the featured on their wedding blog here.:
All the warm and happy feels right now!

Shoot Design:  me, Erin Pace Makeup, Jennifer Cluff at Simple Means Designs

Photography:  Me

Decor:  Simple Means Events

Makeup:  Erin Pace Makeup

Florals:  Emily Burton Floral Design

Makeup:  Erin Pace Makeup

Hair:  Taryn Moser

Arch Rentals:  Altar Grace

Table Rentals:  Native Events Co

Calligraphy:  Kelly the Hobbyist

Invitations/Printables:  Kelly Rupp

Swimwear:  Old Navy and Albion Fit

Treats:  Al and Karen Schmeiser/Bahama Bucks


<![CDATA[I must admit, self-promotion does not come easy to me.  I never know if sharing stuff comes across braggy or like I'm an expert on something or whatever…you know what I mean.  I am honestly just happy to get to do this as my profession because I love it so much and get to work with so many awesome people.  It's really the best.  In all of life, sometimes you have highs and sometimes there are lows.  This year has been a great year for being recognized for my work efforts.  It is humbling and exciting and fun, and it just makes me want to keep upping my game and doing better and better work.
This summer, our 4th of July styled shoot was featured in Southern Bride magazine and it was such a treat.
How did this shoot come about?  Our amazing group of vendors loves to collaborate on holiday/seasonal styled shoots.  We love holidays, celebrating and all things love and connection.  Well, my dear friend Jeni used to live in New York. When she moved back to Arizona, she brought plans for this amazing farmhouse and built it on some farmland here. I've always been inspired by it and we've had many a party there, but I always envisioned it was the perfect home for a 4th of July celebration.  And thus this shoot was born.  Americana decor can be done many ways, but we wanted to step it up a notch with simple, yet elegant details: farmhouse table, greenery, brass and candles, china, cute welcoming printables and of course…pie. Our model is your All-American gal and one of my former brides, but whether this was for a themed wedding, dinner or party, I think anyone would find themselves at home here.  Anyone wanna join us next summer?!
Shoot design:  me, Erin Pace Makeup, Jennifer Cluff with Simple Means Events
Florals:  Erica Scott Designs
Printables:  Lisa Rupp

<![CDATA[I'm so excited to share this styled session from the spring.  We've been recently featured on The Coordinated Bride wedding blog.  You can see the feature here.
I’m not gonna lie, looking back at how lush and bright the desert was a few months ago kind of makes me long for the cooler temperatures again.  If you’re not from our beautiful state, you’re probably already dying of heat.  But this session will remind you that the other eight months of the year  are beautiful.  Wildflowers mixed in with saguaros, mountains, rocks and cactus in beautiful light is one of the prettiest things you’ll see here.   And the bonus here:  a beautiful model, beautiful tablescape, beautiful florals…a cute little baby chick!

Shoot design:  Kim Skinner, Jennifer Cluff, Erin Pace
Event Stylist | Jennifer Cluff @ http://www.simplemeansevents
MUA | @erinpacemakeup
Florals | @emilyburtonfloraldesign
Model | @paigechamberlin
Dress | Free People
Macarons | http://www.decadentmacaron

<![CDATA[This past weekend, I redeemed myself (see 2016 year in review post about not being able to fly to Utah for last year's conference) and made it to Photo Native.  It was wonderful!  I learned lots of things to improve my photography and business skills and feel rejuvenated to start this year off right.  One of the highlights was participating in a styled shoot led by the amazing @rachelsolomonphoto.  She is a fine art film photographer here in Arizona.  While I am not shooting film currently (I actually did shoot families on film for years and while I love the look, it's just not practical for me), I think I captured the vibe pretty well digitally.
The styling of this shoot was AMAZING!  Like, seriously soooo beautiful.  @amberreverie outdid herself with the styling.  It was a little tricky with 10 of us shooting but I got some fun shots nonetheless.  The models were so perfect and patient and it was a great experience.  Also, I really need a loft studio somewhere.  Like seriously, I need to make it happen.  My basement studio room just doesn't compare to this upstairs room with snow reflective light pouring in.  Dreamy!
These were the ceilings in the loft.  So cool!2017-02-01_0005Planning, Styling & Flowers @amberreverie | Host Photographer @rachelsolomonphoto | Location @theloftstudiolehi | Gown @alexandragrecco | Silk Ribbons @froufrouchic | Hair & Makeup @hairandmakeupbysteph | Cake @pippa_cakery | Calligraphy & Invitations @kelseymaliecalligraphy | Ring @taylorcustomrings | Real Couple Models @kaylajohnson_22 and @ekkko_ | @photonative #iamaphotonative #photonative2017]]>

<![CDATA[2016 highlights
Just putting together this post was a labor of love, whew!   I really should keep up on my everyday blogging (business AND personal) than this wouldn’t have been such a hard task!  I really need two of me ;).  This recap is a good reminder of why I ended the holidays totally exhausted!  But in a good way.  2016 was great!
Things I am proud of:

  • I consider all of my clients, my friends.  I love my old ones and my new ones!  I have THE BEST clients/friends!  Thank you all for being so trusting in me.
  • I stayed true to my diverse portrait and wedding portfolio.  My personality and attention span doesn’t lend itself to doing just one thing so I’m grateful I get to do photograph seniors, engagements, expectations, announcements, bridals, weddings, new additions, the occasional high school dance, and extended families.   And design several custom cards along the way.  I know most business coaches would tell me to narrow that down (and truthfully, doing it this way does make it trickier to get my processing times down) but looking back on my work, I’m glad that I haven’t.  I love all of it.
  • New to my business this year were styled/collaboration shoots.  I loved, loved these.  Last February, I was on my way to Photo Native, a photography workshop in Utah.  We had a fiasco flying Allegiant Airlines (sat in the airport for two days with ridiculous weather/operations delays and horrible service…won’t get into that here and now, but we missed the workshop).  To drown our sorrows, my photog friend Adele and I set up our first personal project/styled shoot of the year.  That weekend, I went and bought a new camera and lens (yes, a pity party haha) and we had a great afternoon shooting.  From that experience, I committed to taking time each month to shoot more personal projects.  I am so glad I did.  It rejuvenates me as an artist.   And on top of that, I have been able to collaborate with some awesome vendors – there are so many talented people out there!
  • In all seriousness, I am proud to say that I have the Netflix binge watching while editing thing down to a science now.  😉

It’s hard not to compare yourself to others and wonder if you measure up.  It’s hard to compete on social media, especially when as a busy mom of teenagers, working full time and running a household, serving in my church and community and also trying to have a social life ;), I am often pulled in many directions.  I have lots to improve on and hope to do a few things differently going forward.  I feel so lucky to do what I love.  Thank you for supporting me!
Here’s to an amazing 2017!
Here are a few of my favorite images from 2016… (you can see the full size images below or view the slideshow)


<![CDATA[I am lucky to be friends with some super talented people.  One of them is my friend Jill.  She just opened up a modern calligraphy studio at her home in Gilbert and she invited some friends over for a luncheon calligraphy class.   Check her out on Instagram @modernmarch.  The even more awesome part of our party was that Alice Gabb was in town staying with her on “holiday” from England, so she taught the class for us!  What a treat!  I snapped a few pics of her beautiful new studio…2017-02-02_00012017-02-02_00022017-02-02_00032017-02-02_00042017-02-02_0005The delightful, Alice Gabb…2017-02-02_0006]]>

<![CDATA[Bwah-ha-ha-ha, where do I start with this fun shoot?!   I LOVE Halloween so you can of course know that this was one of my favorites! I asked my two daughters and three of their friends to model for us and I found THE COOLEST location and the rainy, gloomy day made it even more perfect.
I have been collaborating with several amazingly talented vendors on these styled shoots and this one was no exception:

Styling:  Jennifer with Simple Means Events

Florals:  Emily Burton Floral Design

Makeup:  Erin Pace

Hair:  Taryn Moser

Printable/menu:  Lisa Rupp


<![CDATA[I love collaborating with fellow vendors!
We pulled this spontaneous shoot off in a day and even though we had to wake up before sunrise (a big struggle for me), the morning light was worth it.  Who knew the sunrise could be so pretty?!  I love light.

You can see the full gallery here.
Styling/Event planning:  Simple Means Events | http://simplemeansevents.com/ | @simplemeansevents
Florals:  Flora by Haleigh | @_flora_byhaleigh
Tables/Chairs/Rentals:  Native Events | https://www.facebook.com/Native-Events-421977387906658/ | @nativeevents
Wovens:  Woven by Ro | @robyn.parker
Calligraphy: Emily Pace | Penned by Em | @pennedbyem]]>

Oh, how I love this session!  Not to play favorites or anything (because I fall in love with love everything and everyone I photograph), but I love love love this kind of light…spots of lush, rustic nature….some fun vintage props..and especially love this cute little girl and her family.  When Piper’s mom and I talked a couple of months ago, we knew we wanted to do something sweet that would capture the magic of a two year old, that would also incorporate a timeless, vintage feel, since that is their style everyday!  Between the two of us we were able to pull together a fun little tea party for Miss Piper and her babies.  The antique tea sets, books and dolls are all Piper’s family heirlooms so it makes it even better!

Piper was a little hesitant and shy, but I love the innocence it shows in the pictures.  TWO gets a bad rap for being “terrible”, but there’s also this…squishy cheeks, little feet, curiosity, independence and cuteness!  It’s a fun age and I miss my kids being this little.