2016

An old motel, vintage dresses, and lots of make up

Life is full of busyness, deadlines, and schedules. Which is why Nate and I both feel it is so important to carve out time to be creative in our own personal projects. I have been failing at this goal! I have actually been quite jealous of how much fun Nate is having with his vintage film projects (check out his Instagram @melodysdad). So when Nicole invited me to collaborate on a photo shoot with her I jumped at the chance.

Nicole is a photographer and one of my 2015 brides. You can check out her fabulous work on her website. Seriously though, go take a look, her concepts and creativity are thriving. Nicole thought up the concept and arranged all the clothing with her local contact, Miss Ruth's Time Bomb vintage shop.

Nicole recruited Abbey, co-owner of the art gallery, Art Obscura to be our model. Abbey, who is also a sustainable farmer (Brazito Farms) never having modeled or had professional hair and makeup done, hesitantly said yes, not really knowing what she was getting into. My kind of adventurous woman! 

Once Nicole and I had decided on the concept and location of a seedy motel, I knew Brenda Tarango was the perfect addition to the creative crew. And she absolutely nailed the 1960's look we were going for with the hair and makeup. I am a firm believer in putting the best people on your team and then getting out of their way to let them work their magic, and everyone agreed that's exactly what Brenda it. 

So here are a few of my favorite photographs I created at the shoot!

Creative Team:

Photographer: Elise Taylor, Taylor'd Photography

Collaborating photographer: Nicole Dube, SheSoPhoto

Model: Abbey Carver, Art Obscura, Brazito Farms

Hair and Makeup: Brenda Tarango, Makeup by Brenda

Dresses: Miss Ruth's Time Bomb

Location: Century 21 Motel, Las Cruces NM

Business Headshots, We Do Those

We may not advertise it, or really talk about it anywhere on our website, but headshots are as important to small business as is a smile to an introduction, so of course, we have been photographing them. Virtually, your headshot is your business’s first impression, so take a second look at yours to make sure it is the business rep you want standing at the front door.

Convenient

The way we do business portraits is different, we don’t ask you to come to our space, we go to yours. This is really convenient for an entire staff that could use consistent looking headshots. Rather than everyone in the office having to schedule a time to visit a studio and waste an hour, an employee can walk down the hallway and be done in less than 5 minutes.

Modern

So if you have been seeing some business headshots with white backgrounds around Las Cruces, and have been wondering how to go about getting one yourself, contact us. Modernize your profile pictures, update your staff’s photographs so they look consistent, and refresh your business’s virtual first impression. 

A Daily Dose of Self Esteem

As a mom, I often reflect on how I am influencing and shaping my daughters’ self-worth and confidence.  Or as Melody would say, “Filling their buckets!”. Besides telling my children how awesome they are, what can I do to show them?

El Paso Family Photographer

Here’s where my bias kicks in. Nate and I have made an effort to have family portraits in our home, on the wall. Creating photographs is the fun part. Hanging the photographs on our wall and then watching our kids’ eyes light up when they realize, “That’s me!” is the rewarding part. I want my girls to never have any doubt of their individual importance in our family. If I can help them feel strong and valuable here at home, they can carry that strength and light into the world. So for Nate and I, making sure family portraits and individual portraits are hanging in our home is kind of a big deal.

Recently, I learned science can back me up on this. Judy Weiser is a psychologist, art therapist and author who is considered to be an expert in the treatment process of Photo Therapy. She explains the importance of family portraits. “It lets children learn who they are and where they fit. They learn their genealogy and the uniqueness of their own family and its story. When a child sees a family portrait with them included in the photograph they say to themselves, ‘These people have me as part of what they are, that’s why I belong here. This is where I come from.’”

David Krauss is a licensed psychologist and co-author of the book “Photo Therapy and Mental Health”. Here’s what he has said about family portraits. “My bias is very simple. I think they (family photographs) should be on the wall. I am very conservative about self-esteem and I think placing a family photo someplace in the home where the child can see it every day without having to turn on a device or click around on a computer to find it really hits home for that child this sense of reassurance and comfort. They have a certainty about them and a protecting quality that nurtures a child. It says we love you and care about you. You’re important.”

Fine Art Photographer Las Cruces

I could not agree more. So what do you have hanging on your walls? 

You can read more about this topic in this article: How Family Portraits Boost Your Child’s Self Estee

https://phototherapy-centre.com/

The Only Thing You Will Regret After Your Wedding

The Bulletin of Las Cruces puts out a great Wedding Guide annually, and this year I was interviewed in regards to videography. If you haven’t read the article, Memories in Motion, by Bonnie Shranz, here is the link. The article was well written and I have a few quotes in there so I just want to take the opportunity to elaborate on the thoughts I shared, and give you a complete view of how the only thing you will regret after your wedding, is not having any wedding videos.

You will only remember saying “I do”

It takes months sometimes years of planning to get one day just the way you always imagined it. You have laughed, cried, sometimes even fought with your spouse over every little detail from the guest list to the bridal party, the colors, the DJ, the cake, the flowers, the place, the cost. There are ups and there are downs, but it’s behind you. The planning is done. It cost more than you wanted. Definitely more than anyone who said you could do it cheaply said. And you have learned the hard way that your DIY friends betrayed you with their farfetched ideas that it would be worth it to do one aspect yourself to save some money. It would have been worth the cost, you will say. But that’s ok. All stress aside the day finally comes. It’s going to be all about the two of us today. Then the day ends, and all you can remember is saying “I do”. The vows, made me realize how committed I am to love this person forever. The speeches were so heart felt they made me cry. And the way Grandma danced to that one song…But I can’t remember what my vows are, or what was said during that speech, and wouldn’t it be great if we could watch Grandma bust a move again. Photographs don’t capture that.

This is a significant lifetime event

I am surprised how many movies are made just to tell the story of falling in love. They all end the same, with that warm feeling, and they live happily ever after. Sometimes I wonder if people realize that the happily ever after is the meat of a relationship. Until marriage, there was never a real commitment. There was never a deep growth and acceptance of another person being there every day in your happy place that used to be a solo domain. Love on the surface, gets you to marriage. But true love as they say, is something much deeper. It takes great sacrifice of pride. It’s honor and respect in words and actions. It’s forgiveness, it’s forgetful, it’s patient. It’s keeping quiet at times so you can listen. It’s understanding someone to the point people confuse your empathy for telepathy. It’s communication beyond constraint. It’s deep like the roots of a giant redwood tree, and it takes years to cultivate. I know too many people that see this love between their parents and are looking for the right person to feel that same love with. You can’t experience that love with the roots of a sapling! This is what is around the corner. This is why you are celebrating with the largest party ever thrown in your honor. Your love has taken root and the next few decades are going to fly by so fast, but the whole time your love will grow. Happily ever after is the best part, it’s remembering how you got there that tends to fade away.    

At one point in my life I thought I knew everything, and that my parents were horrible. Then one day as I was learning more than I ever could imagine, I realized I knew nothing in comparison to all the knowledge out there. One day I realized how great my parents were. And now I try my best to be as good of parents as they were to me, to my kids. I sit and watch family videos with my girls all the time. They ask to watch them. “Can we watch the kite video”? And we will sit down and watch one after another. They love it. When a couple comes to us for a video, I am not thinking about how high tech can I go with this production, instead I am focused on telling their story to their children. What their children are going to want to see and hear is my approach to telling their story. 

Videography is expensive but priceless

It seems in every wedding budget the one negotiable option is wedding videography. I get it, it was ours too. I mean it would be nice to have wedding videos, but they are just so expensive, right? But this isn’t a Hollywood production costing millions of dollars. This is your wedding, all the blood, sweat, and tears you put into planning this day, and now you are going to leave it up to a few random cell-phonographers to hopefully get some footage where you can make out someone’s face. I have news for you, they are never close enough to get good footage. And with a cell phone you need to be right there in someone’s face, with good light, and no noise, to get the kind of video worth showing your future children. Well it’s better than nothing someone would say. Yeah I guess so, someone with real wedding videos would reply with eyes wide open. If you are getting married, the chances are that someday you will have kids. And one day in every child’s life, they want to know where they came from, how their parents came to be. Their family’s history. Now you could tell them with your memory’s best recollection, or you could show them, how young and in love you were when you got married. Eager to live happily ever after.

 

Floriography and Calhoun Flower Farms

We have been quoted many times for saying how important photography is in a wedding, but there are some wedding details that can really make wedding photos pop. Flowers tend to be the most influential wedding décor. From centerpieces to the bridal bouquet, your florist can make or break the look of your wedding. Which is why we recommend Floriography. Not only are they a family owned business, but their flowers are grown locally, and their flower arrangements are out of this world. I interviewed Susannah Calhoun from Floriography to give you the low down on who they are, what they do and how they do it that separates them from other florists.

Floriography’s Story

Floriography started when Emily Calhoun traveled to Ecuador. She worked on a flower farm and visited several other flower farms noticing a common thread. It turns out, women and children under poor working and pay conditions are the source of our flowers. I say our flowers, because the chances are that if you have purchased flowers in the USA, they probably came from Ecuador. “About 80% of America’s flowers are grown in Ecuador” Susannah stated glumly, “we want to flip the percentage to have 80% grown in America”. Which is why Emily started a flower farm on the side of her Grandma’s house when she returned to the U.S.

Grown in New Mexico

Since then, Floriography has grown so much that they broke it up into two businesses: Floriography specializes on design and arrangements, and Calhoun Flower Farms focuses on farming and growing flowers. “New Mexico is already recognized for having a great farming community, but we just wanted to create another avenue to get recognized of this great state that we all live in. We have created the flower farming movement in New Mexico to really help the economy and grow a local community that appreciates flowers along with all of the other things that New Mexico can bring to the country.”

Providing guilt free locally grown flowers may be the largest difference between Floriography and other florists, but the blooms they offer are far more beautiful than you would expect. “We're trying to emphasize natural beauty and appreciation of our surroundings instead of making this artificial view of what we're supposed to like. For example, I have brides that will ask “Why are your tulips floppy?” A lot of people don't know that tulips are naturally floppy and gracefully going in different directions. A lot of the time you'll get flowers in the store that are actually wired to be straight.”

If you appreciate natural beauty and prefer to support the shop local movement, we recommend Floriography for your wedding flower needs. Help them flip the flower import export percentage by supporting their business. 

  

Check out Floriography for your wedding flower arrangements at http://www.floriographyflowers.com/

And check out their family farm, Calhoun Flower Farms, where they grow their flowers at http://www.calhounflowerfarms.com/