Monday, November 14, 2011

i heart faces - Autumn Splendor

This week's theme at is Autumn Splendor.

This is my then 10-month old seeing the pumpkin patch for the first time.  She thought they pumpkins were pretty cool.


For more Autumn Photos - go check out

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Phone Camera

Wasn't sure if I should title this Camera Phone or Phone Camera.  When Camera Phones were first released, they were a novelty and Camera was used to describe the phone.  Now that they are standard (as are digital cameras), the word phone is used to describe the camera.  Hmm ....

Anyway ..........

As long as I'm on the subject of shooting photos with my phone ....

As most moms, I love having a camera with me at all times on my phone.  Usually it's to catch those great funny moments that you want to tweet or FB, but aren't going to hang up on the wall or even email grandparents because the camera on the phone just isn't fast enough or doesn't zoom enough or something and the kid moves or something and it's not quite right.  Every now and then I get a great one that I am super proud of.

This is one of those moments.

Audrey, looking out the window, holding her new teddy bear on the way home from daycare the other day.  I threw in a couple built-in effects from my phone and voila ... an awesome photo that I had to print out and hang up on my wall.  The quality was even great enough that I could print it 8x10 if I wanted.  I opted for 5x7 on this one.  Now I can look at it all day long at work.


I just LOVE sunrise/sunset photos.

This was the sunrise on my way in to work this morning.

This was captured by my phone ... amazingly enough.  I am really impressed with the camera on my new phone.  It's nowhere near an iphone, but it's FAR better than my last one.  And no ... I'm not getting an iphone.

Monday, November 7, 2011

i heart faces ... black

This weeks' theme at i heart faces is black.

I love this shot of my younger daughter, 7 months, playing with her grandfather's shoe. Really shows the innocence and simplicity of the developing mind.


See more "black" over at

Monday, October 24, 2011

i heart faces - let them be little


The theme this week for iheartfaces is babies. ahhhh sweet babies. I have an almost 11 month old now and I get sad thinking of her growing up. Here she is cuddling with her cuddly katie from church. She is such a little cuddle bug.

For more sweet babies go visit iheartfaces.

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Sunday, October 16, 2011

Open Mic Night

And another from the ministry photographer category.

This was Open Mic Night.  This is just as it sounds ... everyone goes up to share their talent with the guests.  From dance to solo to full band to a capella there is a great display of talent.

Like the worship concert, this provided a degree of difficulty, but a different one.  The lighting was better (the congregation seats were lit up as well), so it was fairly easy to meter from one photo to the next.  The stage decorations were the same with similar lighting, so that was fun and made for soft backgrounds.  But everything was the same.  It was a different person on stage, but there was little movement from the performer, and the audience was an audience, not an engaged congregation worshipping.  So the challenge was to find interesting shots that spoke to the fun of the day without being the same every time. This required movement around the room and finding a new angle periodically.  I had to really think outside my normal box to get something interesting.  I don't know how successful I was.  But here are a few that I've captured.



Father and Daughter ... one of those that's special by knowing their story


She was doing an interpretive dance to "Jesus, Lover of my Soul"
It was fun to photograph because she was all over the stage.  But I couldn't get my shutter speed fast enough.  In hindsight I should have increased my ISO and underexposed a little.


I love this one because it takes me back to my days of piano recitals.  Being nervous and flustered.

She was reading a poem she wrote and won 1st place for at the Alameda County Fair

This cracks me up ..... Sisters sharing an ipod so they could sing the song a capella

Cousins ........ singing "Blessings" by Laura Story.  Another one that's special by knowing their story.

PROUD Grandfather ... this makes me tear up every time I look at it.

Larry ... a guitar novice ... but very passionate.  It's great to see him so excited to play, being very diligent to play every note exactly as written on the page.

Worship Concert

I've taken on the role of being a ministry photographer for the church. It was born sort of out of my always being there with a camera anyway (taking photos for my own edification) and Pastor M mentioning that they'd like an official ministry photographer or two. So I immediately sent off an email and volunteered.

Worship Concert.

The Worship Concert provided a bit of a challenge in the lighting. The lighting was concert style, so it was bright (and colored) on stage and dark in the congregation. That's fantastic for worshipping, really tricking for photographing. It was a real test of my ability to expose properly on manual. And of course the flash was off (not that it would do any good being in the back of the sanctuary trying to capture the front). Additionally, the lights would change color and intensity so I'd have to truly meter my exposure for every ... single ... shot. And sometimes I forgot or didn't have time to get it accurate. One thing that was nice was the soft colors up front and the background. The background on stage makes for some really fun photos. The way the plants or backlit and the soft blues off the wall and the pallet like wood structures. It is one of my favorite backgrounds the church has had and I love taking pictures against it. Almost so much that I want to do a couple portraits up there.

I am working on editing photos still. Knowing what to edit and how to edit and how to improve the photo after it's captured. Digitally photography and post-production software has really changed the photographic world and I'm not caught up yet. Some of these I think would make fantastic black and white photos; some need some lighting alterations. Some are perfect just as they are. I didn't go too deep in editing these photos, but am starting to think about what I'd do and how I'd do it.

Anyway ... Worship Concert Photos


No photo shoot is complete without the baby.





I think this could be so much more powerful in B-and-W or even Sepia or similar.  I love the hands raised contrasted with the head down contemplation.



Like I said ... sometimes I forgot to adjust my settings before getting the shot.  Unfortunately I didn't have time to re-meter and reshoot this shot.

So I've been playing with it in photoshop.  This is the best I've done so far.  Cool effect, but I was hoping to just calm down the bright and see the real thing.

Saturday, October 15, 2011


Last week's i heart faces theme was hands.  I didn't get myself together in time to submit a post, but now in hindsight think I have a couple that would've been perfect.  So I'm going to post them here.