Andrew & Christina | McMenamins Kennedy School

I can’t imagine a couple that I was more destined to photograph than Andrew and Christina. Our paths have crossed so many times and in so many ways, that being a part of their McMenamin’s Kennedy School wedding was just meant to be. I always say that I want my clients to walk away from their session (wedding or lifestyle) feeling like they have made a new friend. In the case of Andrew and Christina, it couldn’t be more true.

The first time I met Andrew and Christina, was at the Rocked! Bridal Show. Our conversation began with the dress Christina was wearing. I recognized it from a local boutique, and we quickly decided we had a mutual love of Portland designer Sarah Bibb‘s clothing! It was an instant connection.

After meeting with Andrew and Christina at my studio, and booking their date, we then realized we were neighbors. We live on the same two-block street! I mean, what are the chances that in all of the Portland Metro Area, we live a stone throw from each other?! I can see their house from the sidewalk at my house. Talk about meant to be! It also meant that doing their engagement photos in our little slice of the world was a natural decision.

Shortly after the couple’s engagement session, Christina and I showed up at the same exercise class! Neither of us knew the other worked out at a local exercise studio and from there the relationship really began. Every week, Christina and I would sweat it out in preparation for her Kennedy School wedding. We would also talk weekend updates, wedding details, timelines and photography while we were at the barre.

When the day of their Kennedy School wedding rolled around, I felt like I knew them so well. I knew who they were as a couple, what they wanted for the day and what details were important to them.

With a March wedding date (and uncertain weather), Andrew and Christina decided to hold their ceremony indoors at McMenamin’s Kennedy School. For an indoor wedding, it is such a fun venue. Lots of rooms, each with their own diverse look. Both before and after the ceremony we were able to move around the property and find some fun locations for photos.

From the movie theater (where we did a portrait in front of the Star Wars sign for this sci-fi loving couple!) to the Detention Bar, every photo represented a special place for this fun-loving couple. The Kennedy School was the location of their first date, so it was only fitting that it was the backdrop to their celebration.

Andrew and Christina are both Portland-transplants, so being a part of this next chapter of their Portland love story was such an honor.

Congratulations, Andrew and Christina! And see you around the neighborhood…

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Ashley Wade | Model Headshots

Working one-on-one with a client is always such a joy. It allows me to really get to know a client during our session and from there we can make some amazing images. Case in point is my model headshots session with Ashley Wade.

Ashley is a fitness professional and model, signed with Sports + Lifestyle Unlimited. When Ashley contacted me, she was visiting Portland (from her home base in Texas) for a couple weeks and was interested in booking a model headshots session. In our short time together, I quickly learned that Ashley is as strong as she is beautiful. She is a natural leader and lives to better her life and the lives of those around her.

Ashley’s Instagram feed–featuring workout inspiration and ideas–has over 14,000 followers (myself included!) that are inspired by her daily posts on fitness and healthy lifestyle. She is fierce in the gym and also finds amazing balance as a mama.

Ashley is one of those amazing spirits that is just a joy to be around. Honestly. She has an infectious smile, and isn’t afraid to laugh at herself. The day before our session she had busted her butt (literally!) at the gym–to the point she could barely move. The day of our model headshots session, her glutes hurt, her quads hurt, and her hamstrings hurt. However, ever the professional, she didn’t slow down. We just giggled as she made her way around Northwest Portland and made everything look effortless.

If Ashley looks a little familiar, it is no coincidence. When not at the gym, she is in front of the camera for a number of national retailers and brands. Keep an eye out for her…

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Robin | Modeling Portfolio

As I was archiving photos the other day, I came across my un-published session of modeling portfolio images with Robin Vieira. Robin is a Portland-based professional model and represented by Sports + Lifestyle Unlimited.

When Robin contacted me about updating her modeling portfolio, I was excited to work with her. She is a natural beauty and what I would call the ultimate “summer girl.” From her dark blonde hair and blue eyes, to her chiseled physique, you can picture her right at home in the summer sun.

Robin is also  is actually one of the most interesting and sweetest gals I have worked with in a long time. She is ego free and very laid back. She surfs. She practices yoga. She glows in front of the camera.

The day of Robin’s modeling portfolio session, she was also incredibly patient! It was the first time I had paired my Sony camera with my Canon lenses during a session, so EVERYTHING was manual. There was no snap, snap, snap and done. I had to take my time, focus manually, set the camera manually and go for the shot.

Here is a look at some of my favorites from our modeling portfolio session. Don’t they just scream, “SUMMER!”?

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Rachel Brice | Professional Dancer & Artist

When I got an email asking about lifestyle portraits and headshots for a professional belly dancer, I have to admit I was intrigued. One of my childhood best friends was a belly dancer and I had spent many hours watching her and her mother practice and perform. So I knew this client would be comfortable with her body and performing for the camera. What I didn’t realize at the time is that this amazing client would be world-renowned fusion belly dancer, Rachel Brice!

If you aren’t familiar with Rachel Brice and her style of dance, you HAVE to check her out. She is amazing. Honestly. Google her name and see what I mean.

When Rachel Brice and I met for her session, she was just back from a European tour. She had been performing in multiple countries and was eager to do some new photos. I was excited to work with such a talented performer and artist.

Working with someone that is a professional dancer, model or actor really makes my job so easy. Like Rachel, they know their body, their expressions, their angles and their lines. They know how to make the camera sing.

What I loved about working with Rachel is that not only was she incredibly down-to-earth and easy in front of the camera, but she also understands how to build a story. By layering her clothing, her jewelry, textures and colors, you get this very beautiful interpretation of who Rachel is.

We spent about half of our session outdoors using the light and texture of the inner Southeast neighborhood. Then we went indoors to create some of my favorite photos from the session. Rachel Brice’s use of texture and color, combined with the environment we were shooting in, created some of the most beautiful images I’ve seen in a long time. They were almost reminiscent of a National Geographic photo essay. I was so proud to have Rachel feature them on her Instagram feed a couple weeks ago…

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Parker | Class of 2017 Yearbook Portrait

When it hits mid-summer, I start thinking about senior portraits! I love working with teens on their yearbook portrait. It is a chance for me to work one-on-one with a client to build a portfolio of images that reflects a who they are at that moment of time.

It has been more years than I care to acknowledge, but I remember the excitement of senior year. I enjoy change, so the idea of ending one chapter and starting a new one was so thrilling. It was a chance to build memories with old friends and the opportunity to meet new friends.

When I look at my senior portraits and my yearbook portrait, I am instantly taken back to this fun–and brief–moment in my life. I think about the fun we had at football games, early morning zero-hour classes, goofing around between classes, and pulling pranks on favorite teachers.

My hope is that when Parker looks back on his senior portraits and his yearbook portrait, he too will remember all of the joy of this special time.

When I met Parker, he was finishing his senior year at La Salle High School. Parker was a varsity athlete and spent his hours after school training and getting ready for playing football next year at Cal. While the Duck in me felt a bit of rivalry, it was quickly trumped by the contagious joy this young man exudes. To say his future is bright is an understatement.

During our session, I enjoyed learning more about Parker’s future goals and what he wants to do over the next 1-4 years. In such a short time, I could tell he is ambitious, has a strong head on his shoulders and knows what he wants from life. He is also a laid-back teen that easily makes friends with those he meets.

One of the things that really made Parker’s session special was his desire to include his Dad’s spirit in to the portraits. While his father is no longer with us, Parker honored him by including his truck and his letterman’s jacket as a special tribute. I get goosebumps when I look at those images.

I am confident Parker will go far in life. And even though I’m a Duck, I look forward to cheering Parker on when a Cal game is on TV…

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