Loving Without Boundaries

Many of my favourite childhood memories were made while camping with my sisters, parents, aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents at a small lake in Saskatchewan. We'd swim in the cool lake water, rain or shine. We'd ride with grandma on the golf cart to get ice cream at the clubhouse. We'd pick cattails and try to trick the little kids by covering them with ketchup in a hotdog bun. Life was simple and perfect. Photographing another extended family at their special lake this summer was nostalgic and wonderful. It was also a beautiful thing to see how an extended family could blend so well, communal parent so effortlessly, and love without boundaries.

"Life is for deep kisses, strange adventures, midnight swims, and rambling conversations. Life is about enjoying every minute you have and creating wonderful memories simply because it feels good to be alive. Live life beautifully. It’s your greatest legacy." -- unknown

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Hold Tightly Those Who You Love

My sister was in Vegas on the strip just a couple weeks ago.  My husband and I can sometimes be found on Jasper Ave here in Edmonton around midnight after a late supper or drinks with friends.  Friends of ours were in Barcelona, on Las Ramblas, the same moment of the attack in August.  Thankfully they are safe, my sister is safe, we are safe…  But that’s not how everyone’s story ended.  What is wrong with this world when senseless things like this keep happening?!  Hold tightly those who you love.

Meet the McLeans

Meet the McLeans family! These guys left me with such a warm and fuzzy feeling. The most kind-hearted kids with rockin’ dance moves and parents who get in on the fun.

There is a lot of crap going on in the world right now… but behind closed doors in the comforts of home, there are so many beautiful moments. Family photojournalism is where my heart is, and it has been such an exciting summer to see more and more families choosing for a documentary session that is not only easygoing and fun, but also shows the personalities of all the most incredible people in their life and they joy they share together. 

Without further ado, here is a day in the life with the McLeans…

Beach Life Hacks - Protecting Your Valuables

Beach Life Hacks - Protecting Your Valuables

I've been slowing compiling a packing and planning list for when I head to the Saskatchewan beaches in August for family "Lake Life" photoshoots, and how to protect my camera from water and sand is something I've definitely been considering.  It's not just a camera that needs to be protected, but all of a person's valuables.  

Every summer there is the question of what to do with your phone/wallet/camera/keys while at the beach when you want to go for a swim or to step away from your towel while wearing nothing more than a bikini.  I've scoured the web and found some truly awesome "beach life hacks" that I think you are going to love!  So without further ado...

BEACH LIFE HACKS:

1. Ever heard of the diaper trick?  Wrap your small valuables inside a diaper and tuck the rolled up diaper in your bag.  You can be pretty sure no one will dare to open something potentially containing the motherload of crap.

2. Wrap your stuff in a tea towel or small cloth and put it in your cooler underneath your food and drinks.  While your peanut butter sandwich may look tempting around lunchtime, it's not likely to be swiped, thereby revealing your items underneath.

3. Many of us go to the beach with a load of beach toys, so why not make them a useful hiding spot?  Wrapped in a baggie or towel inside a bucket or in the hole of a pool noodle?  Just make sure the kids know which ones to keep their hands off.

4. Now for my favourite ingenious tip: Bury your valuables under a sand castle next to your towel. Even if a bully or a curious toddler crush your sand castle, it's not too likely they'd go digging underneath and you'd still have the evidence of your crushed castle to help you remember where you hid it.  

So there you go - have a fun, worry-free time at the beach this summer!

P.S.  Saskatchewan Lake Life Family photo sessions are almost fully booked.  For anyone who would like to get a posed or documentary session at the Prince Albert lake region this summer, I have availability left on August 4th, and 8th-11th.

"Home is now behind you; the world is ahead"

In the spirit of all the graduations happening at the moment…

Home is now behind you; the world is ahead” – The Hobbit

I just got back from Vancouver Island and like any vacation, it was like an enormous breath of fresh air.  This time the air smelt like the sea, damp forest, and the best Rosé wine I’ve ever had (thank you Averill Creek Vineyard).  I try to raise my kids to be curious adventurers, not with their eyes stuck on a screen, but kids that want to investigate, or use their imagination.  Each vacation just goes to show me that I don’t have to try - kids are just naturally curious and in love with the outdoors... 

 

There is a big world out there worth exploring and after coming home with all the fabulous memories, I get excited thinking about printing new photos.  Here are my best tips on where to print and frame your photos:

1. PRINT your photos from Vistek (https://vistek-calgary.photofinale.com).  This is where I recommend my clients print their photos because they are a Canadian company with exquisite quality.

2. FRAME your photos at Mr. Frame (http://www.misterframe.ca).  This is an Edmonton business and I love supporting local companies.  They have a great selection of frames, a type of glass that is almost invisible, and very kind and helpful staff.

Mr Pibb, the Rescue Dog

17 years together with a dog is a long time. Mr Pibb joined this family as a rescue dog, became an essential family member, and is now nearing the end of his sweet life. Such a privilege to be chosen to photograph this beloved pup and his family.

"LAKE LIFE" Family Sessions - Summer 2017, Prince Albert & Edmonton Regions

My favourite childhood memories are of camping at Memorial Lake with my family and cousins.  My parents, aunts and uncles, would all park their campers or tents in a circle and for two glorious weeks, it was lake life.  Running to the beach ahead of our parents and being told to only wade out to belly button depth before they were there to watch over us...  Grandma driving us in the golf cart down to the clubhouse so we could pick out a treat...  Squishing into the camper's mini bath tub before bedtime to wash off the grub of the day...  Crawling into my sleeping bag at night.  That's the good stuff.  The best stuff. 

I love being at the lake and I know that I am not the only one.  I want to be there to photograph your family building their own best childhood memories which is why I am not offering "Lake Life" Family Sessions!

“Bliss is the sand between my toes and the sunburn on my nose”... 

Being near water is my happy place, where my Scorpio soul lives, and I know I’m not alone on this!  This summer, I am offering “Lake Life” Family Photos. 

OPTIONS:
1. A 3-hour “Day in the Life” Lake Life session: hanging out at the beach, cocktails and cards at your cabin, tubing with the boat, skipping rocks off a sand bar…  
2. A 45-minute relaxed posing family session on the beach or in the river valley.

Book before June 1st and receive a bonus 30 minutes extra to your “Day in the Life” session, or a free 12”x18” inch print of your choice from your family session.

LOCATIONS:

July 30 to August 13:  Prince Albert, Saskatchewan & region (Waskesiu, Candle Lake, Emma Lake, Christopher Lake, and area)

June 9-11, July 23-30, and August 17-31:  Edmonton, Alberta & region (Lois Hole Provincial Park, Wabuman Lake, Pigeon Lake, Lac Ste. Anne... anywhere within a 90-minute drive of Edmonton).  

Don’t have time to make it to the lake?  The Edmonton river valley has some pretty stunning sand bars and walking trails, and a backyard blow-up pool or slip-‘n-slide are a guaranteed good summer time…

YES, let's meet by the water!

The Making of a Gallery Wall

To those who know me or who have been to my house, it comes as no surprise that I am a fan of IKEA.  The clean, simple look and practicality gets me every time.  Now IKEA has made a 2 minute video showing a crazy simple way to design and hang a gallery wall.  If you are a Pinterest fan with a knack for design, power to you!  But for those that would love to have photos hanging on the wall without having the stress or fuss of figuring it all out yourself, you need this video:

http://bit.ly/2pYFzpP  

Now here's the catch...  what do you going to put into those frames?!  "Day in the Life" photos are made for those gallery walls.

Here are Lindsey, Colin and kids from a recent Spring afternoon...  

"INTERESTING" - describes documentary photography

The morning light changed and had a different tone.  Geese started flying back.  There was a new scent in the air.  I got excited to start new projects, minimize the clutter, plan a new trip.  Are you feeling adventurous today?

There are so many reasons why I am passionate about documentary photography but today I’m going to share just one:  I find it extremely INTERESTING.  And refreshing.  And different.  There’s personality – you’ll recognize the “spirited child” of the family, or the timid one.  There’s sentimentalism – the look of love your child gives you when you’re too busy to see.  There’s FUN – why not have a family photoshoot while camping, picnicking, or at the playground?!

This year, let Spring open up a different way of seeing family photography.  Feeling adventurous?  Send me a message and I’ll tell you about the promotion for booking a Spring photoshoot.

I will not be another flower

"I will not be another flower, picked for my beauty and left to die. I will be wild, difficult to find, and impossible to forget." -- Erin Van Vuren