Saturday, May 31, 2008

Let's go for a Stroll (1)

Another view of the earthy SRP.

"That the sky is brighter than the earth means little, unless the earth itself
is appreciated and enjoyed".

Helen Keller

More SRP photographs
here & here and even more on the way.

Go enjoy the beautiful earth this know I will be.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Rosey Mornings

Just thought I'd post this sweet rose to remind us all to savor our mornings and keep them rosey and cheerful. Sad news came last night; my sweet and smiley Aunt Tina passed away a little after 8pm. She was ill for the past few months and rather weak for several years in a row now. That never stopped her from sharing an encouraging story, lending an ear, helping out those around her or having family get togethers on her enormous property. I remember years and years full of parties, Thanksgiving dinners, baby showers and just for fun BBQ's at her home. We would all play hours of vollyball, cards or horseshoes together. Tina would usually be cooking for everybody or in deep conversation with others at her custom giant banquet table.

I will always remember her sweetness, soothing voice, easy tempermant, love for children, bright blonde hair and famous cheesy potatoe casserole (1 with onions and w/o to please everybody). That was her way. She was one of the most pleasant people I've ever met. Her kindness and loving spirit will be greatly missed.

My heart goes out to all those who loved her as I did.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

A Style Queen Extraordinaire

I'm Posting THIS Blog Because #1 I Found It & Love It and #2 Because I Believe Every Girl Could Use a Little More Style In Her Life.
(I'll find something for you boy readers later)!
Better yet...take a look and keep your style meter updated so you can get in a really
sweet spot with the lady love in your life.

Have yourself a looky loo. You're going to love, love, love the stream of inspiration and color her blog exudes. Don't stop there though...Jen Ramos is a powerhouse and has her own company MADE BY GIRL. Check it out! Do a little shopping & bookmark it because like I said you're going to LOVE her stylish & colorful creations.
This poster is what I am falling for at the moment, only it wouldn't fit in anywhere in my house. Darn, Darn, Darn.


Let's go for a Stroll

Over the weekend my family and I visited a local Ecological Reserve, The SANTA ROSA PLATEAU (I'll be referring to it as SRP). I was wildly enchanted by every bit of what I saw. I think we covered nearly ten miles of ground that day. What a special piece of land! Over the next few days I hope to take you on a stroll through the raw beauty of this place. I will be going back time and again I'm sure. I am putting this on my list of places to visit next spring when the wildflowers will be in bloom. photograph posted yesterday called "Lavender Bliss" was taken during my visit to SRP.

This sign was posted at the exit of the trail head we departed from.
I do not know why I am choosing this photo at this very moment to post, but it grabbed me and won't let go. Sheesh...this spot...this view...the quietness...the overflowing peace that it brings back to me. It's too hard to explain in just words.

If you look closely you'll notice the tree in the center-bottom half of the photograph had fallen over. It was just a massive twisted heap perfectly centered between the branches of the healthy tree I was photographing. It looks dinky in this photo, but it was NOT dinky at all.
(click on photo to enlarge)
Talk about a gorgeous day! Even when it was breezy and turned cloudy it was like the sky was smiling down upon us as we hiked our way through the acreage.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Friends Make all things Brighter

Jen-thank you for these kind words & mention in your profile and I'm so happy that quote resonated with you in those dark days. Thank goodness they're in the past now!

Jason-thanks for featuring me earlier this month! I don't how I forgot to mention it sooner. Your blog rocks and I'm loving your photographs from Paris!

Have a look at my profile featured on Jason Moore's Blog earlier this month if you fancy. And make sure to check out Jen's profile and blog as well.

I'm so blessed to have great friends that brighten my days!

A quote to learn by,

“When you have come to the edge of all the light you have, and must take a step into the darkness of the unknown…Believe that one of two things will happen to you…Either there will be something solid for you to stand on or you will be taught how to fly.” Unknown Author

Lavender Bliss

On a recent nature walk I found a dollop of beauty among the blandest of twigs.

I couldn't help myself from capturing this photograph.

For miles there was nothing but dullness and suddenly about an inch and a half of lovely lavender brightened up the path.

Truly breathtaking (at least I thought so)!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Tuesday's Texture Challenge (Part 3)

Tuesday's Texture Challenge is back! Here are some new textures to add a little umpf to your photographs when they need it or just for the pure sake of having fun. Read more about my texture challenges here.
Remember you can download the original size here and use it in any manner you'd like.
These were some quick edits. I personally love the texture #6. It totally looks like water drops!

Free texture #5 & Sample
Free texture #6 & Sample

Monday, May 26, 2008

Mercury Retrograde

In case you haven't heard the next few weeks could be complete mayhem according to some. Check out more on the Mercury Retrograde beginning today and ending in a few weeks. Last time the Mercury Retrograde occurred there were some issues with Blackberry's across the nation. Read more about the it here. More on how this retrograde might affect your own relationships and interactions here. Some way to start the summer huh?

If you have anything out of whack happen to you the next few weeks and think it's related to the Mercury Retrograde write me and I'll post your conclusions on the phenomenon.

In Honor of All Soldiers

Today just isn't a day off from work. It's a day set aside to honor our Soldiers.

No matter the branch, rank or status...a Soldier is a Soldier. Everybody knows what the definition of a Soldier is, but being a Soldier in itself does not define the man. The man defines the Soldier. The substance of the soul defines the man and the light in the heart shines through the soul. The heart and soul of a man define the Soldier.

Here's a look into one Soldier who's heart and soul ended up defining him for almost a century and surely forever-if forever exists. He not only gave his life for freedom of strangers, but left something of substance behind. Meet the Writer, Poet, Lover & Soldier, Mr. Joyce Kilmer.

Poem by Joyce Kilmer

(For Mrs. Henry Mills Alden)

I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;

A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;

Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

For those who don't know-I love poetry and this has been a favorite. Today was the perfect day to honor it.

Friday, May 23, 2008

How Can You Not Fall In Love?

when two adorable little baby boys jump into your life? You can't! At least my kids and I couldn't! My Aunt Janis had 5 little mommy-less kittens needing homes. We decided to head out on Mother's Day to pick one up and bring him home.
We ended up bringing two bouncing baby boys home!
So lovable!

Slurp, Slurp, Slurp~

Introducing Felix~
and Shadow~Both were named by my highly creative kids! :-) My son and husband really wanted their names to be "Randy" and "Earl" from the tv show "My Name Is Earl,"
but my daughter wasn't having it.

Have yourself a Prrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrry Weekend!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Mary & Miriam's Senior Portraits (Final Set)

Mary & Miriam wanted me to try some unusual edits on their photos and I think these will meet with their approval. I love unique looks!

This photo of Mary is brilliant...she looks amazing and I think the vintage style edit works well~
What a gorgeous photo and girl~
A wild the intensity in Miriam's eyes~
Just being the beauty she is~Girls...hope you like them. Thanks for the sweet to you soon! :-)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Megan - Class of '08 Cont.

I narrowed down these to be my favorites from our session in the "woods" last weekend.
I hope Megan likes them too!

Wow know how to smile girl! I love, love, love this photo!
I know I say it a lot, but I really do mean it~
Precious...I like the downward look, sweet grin and the "pop" of color from her jacket that was casually hanging off her shoulder~
Love this pose, again with that incredible smile and the added special texture
(BIG thanks to my friend Jen for sending it right over when I asked about it)!
A quick snap of Megan with her long time boyfriend Matt.
These two...very cool teens~

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


Just some quick updates...I didn't forget "Tuesday's Texture Challenge," just a little swamped today. Skipping this week. Thanks for the emails about it being missing today! I'm glad so many of you are looking forward to them each week. I can't wait for some of you to take the challenge and create some of your own images with the textures. Remember to share them!

To my clients waiting for edits...they're on the way...I promise! In fact, check your private galleries on my website tonight and there just might be some little surprises waiting for you. Thanks for being so patient!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Mary & Miriam's Senior Portraits (Set 1)

Here are some more teasers from two senior friends-Mary & Miriam. This shoot started at 4pm and was one of the hottest days to do outdoor photos. It was easily 100 degrees-even at 4pm. We rocked it out though. These two were full of clever ideas and we tried to squeeze it all in.
I'll be sharing more as I get them edited.
These are all in black and white as this was the preference of both Mary and Miriam.

Thanks for choosing me to do your senior photos was awesome!

I also wanted to thank my daughter Brittany for assisting me with this shoot...
you did great hunny!

Mary here...such a pretty smile~
Looking incredibly comfortable in front of the camera~
Miriam here...A playful shot when she wasn't didn't think I was clicking away-
so classy and natural looking~
She's looking highly sophisticated here...I liked how she naturally crossed her feet~Two lovely seniors!

Megan - Class of '08

This was a very special session for me today with Megan. I've known Megan since I was 14 years old. I believe that means she was around 4 years old when we met.
Now she's all grown up and graduating from high school!

Congratulations Megan!!!

Check back for some fun & stylish shots from this shoot later in the week.

(Click each photo to enlarge it)

I know...BEAUTIFUL right? And get this...she's as SWEET as she looks!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Sneak Preview of Mary & Miriam

Two awesome friendship.
More to come...

(Click on photo to enlarge)



Bet you can't tell these were taken in 100 degree weather! What troopers!!!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Dinner is Served

Bacon Wrapped Prawns and Crisp Asparagus. My family DEVOURS this dinner. You should make it if you're shrimp eaters! Takes a whole 7 minutes out of your day if you buy the shrimp without the shells. I don't do that...I take them off myself to save money and it takes all of 12 minutes from start to finish. Put it on your list for this week...perfect warm weather din-din.

And for those of you who thought all I have going on in my life is photography...
that may be true, but I can cook too! :-)

Two senior sessions later today...woo hoo! I can't wait!!!

Friday, May 16, 2008

May & June Portrait Specials!

This month is almost over...and I thought why not run some portrait specials for my blog buddies who read & support me everyday!

"Prom Dress" Photo Shoot-I know prom just passed for both the local highschools in my neighborhood. Why only get to wear your dress once? Book a photo session with me for May or June to give that dress the attention it deserves! Do you know a senior who just went to prom? No idea what to get them for a graduation gift...give her the gift of a "Prom Dress" Photo Session! She will cherish it forever!


"Thinking of Dad" Photo Shoot-Don't know what to get dad this year for Father's Day on June 15th...why not a photo gift of his kids? This works for grandpa's too! There are countless options for unique and personal gifts...t-shirts, mugs, playing cards and even brag books just for the special Dad in your life. Don't wait on this one...we need time to do the shoot and get your order back so you can give dad a Father's Day gift to remember!

  • These offers are good for the month of May or June 2008 only. Contact me for availability.
  • Receive a "Prom Dress" Portrait Session or a "Thinking of Dad" Portrait Session at the special session price (contact me for the special price).
  • These shoots must take place in Murrieta or Temecula, Ca at one location of your choice (or mine-if you need help picking the perfect spot).
  • If you would like a "Prom Dress" or "Thinking of Dad" Portrait Session and are outside the Murrieta/Temecula area, please know I'd be happy to come to you, but will have to add a travel fee for doing so.
  • "Prom Dress" Photos will be taken wearing Prom Dresses wardrobe change for this session!
  • "Thinking of Dad" Sessions can include up to 4 children and their mom (if desired) for no extra charge. If there are more than 4 little ones there will be a small additional fee.
  • The Extra Special Part-1 free 8x10, 4 free wallets & 1 free 5x7 of your choice (same image will be used for all free prints & the finish will be Luster) will be given as my gift to you for taking advantage of these specials.
Please send a link to my blog to your own friends and family who may be interested in one of these two specials. I don't want anybody to miss out!

Contact me at for session & portrait/gift pricing if you're interested in either of my May or June Specials!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

McKensie's World (Part 3)

Is Mckensie rockin your world yet? I hope so. The versatility of this model is endless. I met her last weekend at her home for this shoot. I called this series "McKensie's World" because she was so comfortable with herself in her own environment that I hardly had to work with her. I just had to make sure I didn't miss the action while she posed! I got to give it to this girl-she was lightning fast when changing her wardrobe.

I've gotten many emails stating how gorgeous she is and about the wonderful scenery in the photos. Every photograph was taken at McKensie's family's home. That made the shoot quite smooth and we were able to finish within three hours. The property included horse stables, orange groves, tennis courts, a custom rock pool with many caves and waterfalls and much, much more! We weren't able to utilize every aspect of this enormous paradise in just 3 hours. I hope I get to work with Mckensie again someday soon. She was a breath of fresh air! Thanks McKensie and Mom Rhonda! It was just too great to describe...I hope you both are loving the preview of our session here on my blog. Photographs are being placed in your gallery on my website as I type!

I have to thank the wonderful Cindy, a local makeup artist who I work with regularly. She not only did McKensie's gorgeous makeup for this shoot, but she assisted me during it too. I really appreciate your help and hard work Cindy! Cindy has over 20 years experience in makeup , styling and hair. She has a creative eye and is a dream to work with. We always have a fun time when working together. If you're in need of an experienced makeup artist and are in Southern California send her an email ( and she'll work her magic on you too! Make sure you mention my name to get the best deal possible.

Okay-on with tonight's edits...I didn't comment on the others because I didn't have a chance, but tonight I'm going to let you know my thoughts on these new ones.

This first one is just phenomenal to me. I missed it the first night when quickly looking through and picking what to edit first. I don't know how that could have happened because this could easily be the very best photograph taken that day. Everything about it amazes me...
her eyes, her lips, the pose and the sheer simplicity of it. When I think of a model...I think of photographs just like this.

This is just a sweet image-one I've already printed out for my portfolio-that's how lovely I think this shot is. Mckensie is caressing her stunning horse Lyle. For not having any eye contact at all-it's captivating. I adored the orange flowery trees in the background during this set.

A bit sultry & it!

Her smile makes this photograph shine!

Personalizing the shoot with her own touches...her pet snake!
You could sense the love between them!
The family's cactus garden served as the perfect background & setting.

Another amazing swimsuit photo...a glamorous edit was added to this to "kick it up a notch".
I love that necklace-it so worked for this look.

Okay-both Cindy and McKensie looked at me like I was nuts when I said we're doing some photos with the giant dinosaur that guards their monster of a pool. I won...and got the shot!
This is my "I always give you at least One Shot Beyond what you're expecting" shot of the day!
I added an old world technique to this and some scratches to really give it some spunk.
This is it-for now...maybe I'll share some more when I get the chance...
thanks again to Mckensie & her family for letting us into her world for a day!
I see a long career ahead for this beautiful young model!

for Photoshop Junkies

Free Photoshop Plugins go and get em...

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

McKensie's World (Part 2)

No words are necessary for these...check back soon to see even more of the captivating McKenzie Jo-

(Click on each photo to enlarge)

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

McKensie's World

she's M-Y-S-T-I-F-Y-I-N-G...M-A-G-N-E-T-I-C
and there's more to come...

Tuesday's Texture Challenge (Part 2)

Okay all...if you missed the challenge check out what it's all about here. I'm just warming up...there are some really interesting ones coming up if you start participating...yes, YOU!


(Click Photos to Enlarge & Click Texture to Download Full Image)

My Sample Photo & Free Texture #3

My Sample Photo & Free Texture #4

Monday, May 12, 2008

Moments Before PROM

Don & Amanda~
Hope you enjoyed your teaser photos! What a sweet and super quick shoot. You wouldn't think we'd have so many great shots in only a 1/2 hour of shooting time, but we do...and these are only a taste of them. Check your private gallery on my website for the rest of your shots later this
Hope you two love birds had a great time at Prom the other evening!