While I was in the process of packing my things to move from Lansing to Marysville several months ago, I received a text message from Kelly asking me to photograph her wedding. I was ecstatic. I met Kelly back in high school and always thought she was one of the coolest girls in town. Although, we lost touch when she moved away for school, I will always be fond of the memories we made back in the day. From beach days, to movie/game nights, to “camping” – it was always a good time. I’m incredibly happy that she found a man like Erickson who makes her smile so brightly and cares about her deeply. I love knowing that my friends are happy, and I’m excited to catch more evidence of their love and happiness on their big day!
One of my favorite things to catch on camera is love, and these two were full of it. Goofy, lighthearted, heart-warming love. The way that their eyes light up when they look at one another made me smile. You can rest assured that you have the kind of love that everyone else wants when it radiates and makes others light up as well.
Derek and Michaela are pretty cool cats. They’re from my hometown, they enjoy Pokemon Go, they let me borrow their dog when I was dog-less, and they let me take their picture. I love the happy looks I caught them giving one another, and the cute smirks after a sweet kiss. I love their love.
This week has been a rather long week. I got sick, still went to work all week (because I feel guilty whenever I call in), I had to order a new camera body (my D80 finally died after 8 long years. R.I.P. baby), I’ve been working on designing a logo, planning photo sessions, I had to finish up a ton of homework in order to be ready for my final exams that are coming up, I’ve been trying to plan and budget financially, all while mentally preparing myself for my next 12 credit hour semester to start. You could say that I’ve been a little overwhelmed.
In order to center myself throughout my whirlwind of a life, I’m the type of person who desperately needs alone time. I feel energized and relaxed after spending some time alone. So after I got out of work today, I made a mandatory date with myself, my camera, and some good old fashioned nature. Photographing nature reminds me of how beautiful, and complicated, and yet simple life really is. After my walk today, I feel inspired and ready to be creative again.
Whitney: Class of 2017
I’m not lying when I say that I was ecstatic when Whitney inquired about doing her senior photos with me. I may be her cousin’s girlfriend, but any photographer would be crazy not to be as excited as I was. She’s an absolutely gorgeous, strong, and independent young woman. Not to mention, she has stunning green eyes that will pierce right through you. She knew just how to pose in front of a camera, and made my job super easy. On top of all of that, she’s from Port Huron, MI and was willing to travel all the way to East Lansing to let me take her photos. I am honored.
While I don’t go out very much at all, because I’m kind of a hermit, we found some incredibly beautiful places on trails and also at Michigan State University. It’s refreshing to be photographing in a new and unfamiliar place. My passion for taking photos is beginning to overflow for the first time in a long time. I feel adventurous and ready to find even more beauty where I live now (especially since fall is here)!
I have done many spontaneous things throughout my life that have worked out well for me most of the time, and I’m actually very proud of. Some examples are: parasailing, skydiving, taking off to California on a whim, taking a class and state exam to get a license for properties and casualties insurance (passed the exam the first time, I might add), changed my mind many times about what to go to school for (I even became a certified nurse aide), called in to work to take care of an injured baby bird (it lived to tell the tail), went on a camping trip with friends (I should say “camping”), calling up a friend to go ice skating in Detroit around the holidays, and many other things. With all of this being said, I think the thing I’m most proud of at the moment, is my move to Lansing.
Although many people protested my move, and I complained about it a lot shortly after moving here, I’m learning to love it; things are falling into place. I have a job that I love, I’m officially starting my photography business, I’m choosing to finally finish my bachelor’s degree, and I have a James by my side who protects, supports, and loves me. He and I have a lovely, quiet one bedroom apartment that feels like home, we’re raising a gecko and adopted a dog, both of us are working very hard toward our own goals, and in turn, our goals as a couple. I have the little family that I’ve always wanted. As much as I miss being close to everyone I love dearly, this move has grown me.
It was a difficult decision to make. Leaving everything behind scared me, but I decided to follow my gut and make the move. Throughout my past few months here I’ve learned patience is a wonderful virtue, even when you’re living with your best friend/amazing boyfriend. Discipline is a godsend, when your mom is no longer there to tell you to finish your homework instead of playing video games. Responsibilities literally cannot wait, otherwise you may have puppy accidents on your hands… or bed. I’ve learned to enjoy my alone time at whole new levels, and because of this I feel empowered. There are two lessons that I would deem the most important since I moved: the people who love you are always cheering you on from afar, even if you don’t speak with them everyday, and do what you know is best for you. Follow your gut, take the leap of faith, and be adventurous. Life has a funny way of working out eventually, and we all have the same finish line, so make the most of it. Decide what you want and go get it.