Tiff & Matt had a gorgeous sunset wedding at the Hidden Palms in Santa Fe, TX. Here’s a sneak peek at some of my faves!

Tiff+10 Tiff & Matt: Wedding Sneak Peek

Tiff+20 Tiff & Matt: Wedding Sneak Peek
Tiff+25 Tiff & Matt: Wedding Sneak Peek
Tiff+30 Tiff & Matt: Wedding Sneak Peek
Tiff+50 Tiff & Matt: Wedding Sneak Peek
The award for most lively person I’ve ever met goes to Molly, Tiff’s sorority sister. I wish I could bring her with me to every wedding. She’s a total hoot!
Tiff+60 Tiff & Matt: Wedding Sneak Peek
A really great mother-daughter moment. Tiff surprised her mom and it got a little emotional. :)
Tiff+70 Tiff & Matt: Wedding Sneak Peek
Here’s Tiff giving me the “do I really look gorgeous?” look. Yep, you do. ;)
Tiff+80 Tiff & Matt: Wedding Sneak Peek
These are the fairy princesses of the wedding!
Tiff+90 Tiff & Matt: Wedding Sneak Peek
Absolute favorite quote EVER: “I love these shoes so much, I’m going to wear them to my own wedding!!” - Spoken like a true flower girl-bride in the making!
Tiff+100 Tiff & Matt: Wedding Sneak Peek
More to come soon!

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life·style pho·tog·ra·phy noun.
Photography re-creating real life situations in a controlled setting. Lifestyle photography is one of the most popular and consistent types of photography in the market today. Lighting is generally bright, airy and quite natural looking. There are many commercial applications, including magazine editorial and advertising usage.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lifestyle_photography

Here comes the disclaimer…I can only speak for myself. That out of the way, I believe there is a difference between a Portrait Photographer and a Lifestyle Photographer. I strive to be the latter…and then strive some more.

Now, I prefer the natural moments, which are referred to as Photojournalism. But I know that, on occasions, a beautiful and very real moment can be fostered (if not created). For me, a picture taken is like an unfinished canvas. Sometimes there are elements that would be left behind if said photograph weren’t carefully nudged in the right direction both before and after the shot is taken. And usually (with emphasis on the usually) a straight camera can only do so much in capturing the vision of my mind.
I am currently working on an edit for a couple of shoots I did while in Seattle and Vancouver, BC. To show you what I mean, here’s an example of a shot pretty much straight from the camera:

1013 A Look Behind My Lens
and then the finished product after that little, loving nudge previously mentioned:

1001 A Look Behind My Lens
***On a side note, this example can also serve to answer why it takes about 10 business days to get your finished photographs from me.

As with all art, it is all subjective. I can only tell you what it’s like for me. I can’t really give much insight on how it is for others because as artists we all see and produce in different ways. If there is one thing I know for sure is that I will never stop learning, and as the old adage goes, there’s more than one way to skin a…well, you know. There are no wrongs or rights – just a peek behind my particular lens. ;)

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This commercial gave me a good giggle. Enjoy!

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The New Painter

May 13, 2009
After three looong years, Matisse finally has a new buddy. They’re in cahoots already…their mission? To overdose me with their unstoppable cuteness!
Meet Renoir:

01 The New Painter
Reni, for short.

03 The New Painter

Amazingly, at just 12 weeks, she’s as good as potty trained.

06 The New Painter Hooray!! We feel like we won the lottery…

07 The New Painter…except she’s pretty darn good at keeping us up at night, too.


08 The New Painter

Minus the À la Bugs Bunny need for toothpicks between our eyelids, she’s a re-he-healy great fit into our small family. Welcome home, Reni!!

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Gaping Hole

May 4, 2009

I spent the better part of last week entertaining my cousin who was visiting from Chile. We explored various restaurants around town, gamed it up at D&B, went shopping, visited the Rice campus, saw Mates of State and Sunbears live, visited family, and mostly vegged around the house catching up on the past eight years of our lives. We had not seen each other in such a long time that I had started to forget exactly how much I’d missed him.

As expected, lots of things have changed in the span of eight years. We’re both now settled in our homes on opposite sides of the hemisphere, enjoying/working hard on our own businesses, and seeing kids grow (though on my side they are borrowed from my brother). Something else that is new is that he’s also gotten quite fluent in his English, though my Spanish is a little worse for the lack of use. But, after all this time, one thing has remained ever-so-constant: the great relationship we enjoy. We’ve been kindred spirits since we met on my trip to Chile at the age of 14. In Spanish, kindred spirits translates into twin souls, which I find strangely fitting.

Gonzalo was named for my father, and I for his mother. In that alone we seem to be bonded more closely than other kids in our family. The funny thing is that we are so alike – down to our preferences in colors, views about various topics, tastes in music, our temperaments, goals and dreams, our utter love of all things chocolate and carbohydrate. Quite often I can say exactly what he is thinking and he can tell with acute precision how I’m feeling, even when we’re miles apart. It’s almost like we were born of the same womb…a connection that I can only compare to what I’ve heard that twins share, except that there is a five year difference between us and we are essentially from two completely different worlds. About the only thing that is significantly different between us is his complete repulsion for cheese and all cheese-related products. Blasphemy, by my standards!

It was a great week. And though as we said our goodbyes at the airport (at an entirely too early-a-time for a Saturday morning) I felt perfectly okay, now I can’t help but feel the sadness creeping in. It’s tough not to sense a certain emptiness in the house. Even Matisse seems to be looking for something that is no longer there. And it’s taking everything I have to hold on to the tethered edges of a gaping hole, threatening every second to rip a little bigger of an opening.

For one glorious week, the world was slightly different with my best friend at my side. I can only hope that it won’t be another eight years until we get to see each other again.

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There is a pretty clear line dividing the photographers who choose to feature music on their sites and those who don’t. It’s a bit of a heated debate easily found on various community forums. I understand both sides pretty clearly and think that both have their valid points. But in the end, as it does with almost everything else, it comes down to a personal decision.

For me, it’s like adding the music to a movie – personality, let’s say. After all, I’ve said it many times that I looove music, and my everyday life is hardly ever without its soundtrack. — As it happens, right this very moment it’s moving to Ingrid Michaelson’s The Hat.

Why should my website be any different? After much self-debate I opted to include music on my site. But there was a smidge of a problem.

Going back to said photography argument, one of its key points of argument centers on the difficulty in obtaining permission or rights to legally feature music. Many websites out there routinely post music illegally without any regard to artist rights. As an artist myself, I wanted to avoid doing this to anyone at all costs. It is a bit ironic that many photographers out there have no qualms about doing so, which sparks the debate on and on.

So I started doing some research to adhere to my personal principals. At first, I went the route that most people go. I tried contacting Indie artists via their websites/social networks to request permission or info on obtaining a license. But I quickly found that it is as difficult to garnish a response from these artists as it is from the big label ones. After a lot of online reading, I found the answer: BMI.

BMI’s licensing service offers folks the ability to feature music from countless artists – big names and newbies alike – for a fee roughly starting at $350 annually. It’s relatively easy to set up an account and the quarterly reports are simple as well.

If you are thinking of featuring music on your site, BMI is a great solution. The moderate cost is well justified by the wealth of music available, and the peace of mind that comes from doing the right thing and respecting the work of others.

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I can’t help but feel a little giddy when I think of Aimee & Gene. To explain, I need to elaborate on one of my recent addictions. I’ve picked up a few lately, and one of the worst is the TV show Heroes.

It actually started very innocently. I gave Blake a subscription to Netflix last Christmas and we both saw that not only can you order DVDs through the mail, but they have this nifty little system that streams movies and TV shows straight to your computer. I’d heard a lot about Heroes, but for some reason or other never got a chance to watch. Blake and I decided to give the online service a shot with the first season of the series and have not been able to stop watching the show since. It is truly one of the most clever, fun, and suspenseful shows on the tube – or in this case on the laptop. ;)

My favorite character is Hiro Nakamora – a time traveler that is just…well, cooler than cool. I love, LoVe, LUV Hiro. Long story short, Gene – Amy’s now husband, reminds me so much of my favorite character that I can’t help but feel a Cheshire grin come upon my face when I think of him. Probably to Gene’s dismay, I was on the verge of practically asking for an autograph all through the wedding. I could hardly help myself. By the grace of all things good, somehow I restrained.

Both Amy and Gene are two of the sweetest and most genuine people I’ve ever met. It didn’t hurt that they fueled my adoration by selecting one of my all time favorite The Cure songs (Just Like Heaven) to open up the party. It just so happens that I’ve bordered on fanatic for anything The Cure since I was 16. As if this wasn’t enough, Amy sent me a link to the online comic for Heroes recently. What is an addict to do?!?

But enough about my idiosyncrasies. Here are some of my favorite shots from their day. I love you guys!!

CEREMONY: St. Vincent De Paul Catholic Church
RECEPTION: Holiday Inn Reliant Park

014 Aimee & Gene: Wedding

019 Aimee & Gene: Wedding
047 Aimee & Gene: Wedding
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489 Aimee & Gene: Wedding
633 Aimee & Gene: Wedding
634 Aimee & Gene: Wedding
635 Aimee & Gene: Wedding
Click here for the: SLIDESHOW

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A long time friend of mine sent me this in an email today. It’s one of the most positive things I’ve come across of late.

Join the movement at www.playingforchange.com

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So I’m listening to Pandora (more on that later), and one of my very favorite songs comes up: The Verve’s Bittersweet Symphony. I haven’t heard that song in ages!

I can’t help but let the melody sweep me into song at the top of my lungs and at the distress of Matisse’s poor ears. As I’m belting it out, I take a half turn in my office chair to find Mattie in the doorway:

Mattie+Thins+Me+Crazy Bittersweet Symphony   On the Verge of Being Committed

It’s pretty bad when your own dog looks at you like you’re utterly crazy!

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M.I.A.

April 2, 2009

Whew!

It’s been a crrrazy month! I’ve been so very bad about blogging and I’m feeling the pain. On the other hand, I have a lot of cool stuff to put up! Lots of photos, lots of ideas, lots and lots of past and upcoming adventures overall.

March was absolutely wonderful…but it was…well, in a word: brutal. I’m looking forward to a more “normal” time ahead. So, just breaking the silence here. There’ll be more to come soon.

Oh yeah! And Happy April Fool’s, Everybody!

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