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I am a family, portrait, wedding and lifestyle photographer. The process of making people comfortable with the camera is just as much of a passion for me as is capturing the moment. It is important to me to make the photo session experience a memorable one as well. I know it's a generic statement but I am passionate about life and the urgency to document the moments as they unfold. Take time to invest in the days of your lives. Call me--I can help! I've created a "book of days" gallery on my website: www.mbgpics.com where I do that for my own life. Hopefully it showcases who I am as a person as well as as a photographer.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Informal "Connections"






I am finding that the older I get, the more I need to connect with people. The more I need to feel part of a community. The more I need to feel noticed and appreciated and...well alive.

In many ways-this (excuse the cliche)"high tech" world of ours offer us so much in the way of communication options. The technology is impressive indeed. But deep down I feel like we as a culture have regressed so much. Now we're all sitting in coffee shops emailing the person two tables away. Pretty soon we'll be emailing the barista our coffee drink order and then tipping them electronically via a follow up email.

Don't get me wrong--I love the computer, my cell phone, my ipod and, of course, my camera but... Most of the time I still feel, well--'disconnected', and unnoticed. Invisible at times. That is until I type my way into the world wide web. My cyber home, my cyber family, my cyber friends. A place where my photos can do the talking for me.

I joined the SmugMug Daily Photo community recently to connect with others as passionate and obsessed with photography as I am. To connect with people who appreciate pictures, look for meaning in them; those who notice the small things. They help me to grow in my photography and offer criticism, insight and perspective. They notice me. In posting photos I am looking to express my creativity mostly but I am often offered positive feedback, perspective, and even compliments. (Icing on the cake as far as I am concerned.) I just want to feel part of something bigger than me where I can learn and grow (can you hear the Cheers theme playing in the background?). I choose to write and communicate with pictures rather than words. It feels safer and, as it turns out, is more rewarding.

What baffles me is that in such a short period of time I have established those connections, I have been touched by them. For example, my family knows I am a total goob about taking pictures. Most of the time they tire from me sending them-especially when they come in large bunches. Often they don't respond and certainly almost never offer any feedback (or thanks). Heck-even my own husband rolls his eyes when I grab the camera bag for a quick outing. (He grumbles even more when I point the camera at him.) But here on this site--in just over two months I have learned about people's thoughts, homes, travels, passions, loves, pets and pet peeves, losses-- the list goes on and on. I've communicated with people, connected with them, and learned from them. It is, in some ways, like a family. I've even had one guy work on my images to improve them for me (thanks George). Almost always, when I ask a question, I get a personal (kind and helpful) response. All this from people I have never met and probably never will get the chance to.

Even more baffling is that I can walk into the camera store where I purchased (a guess here as it would be too depressing to actually tally these number up) over $4,000 worth of camera equipment in the past three years unnoticed for ten minutes..probably because I have a baby in a stroller. And even more troubling that when I walk to the counter the sales person (who is looking through a stack of photos he's recently developed) says "can I help you" without ever making eye contact with me for almost a minute. He's uninterested in me, my request and troubled that I am asking to get my CCD sensor in the camera cleaned. "That will take over a week you know?", he says while still thumbing through the photos. "Humm-", I say, "that'll be better than taking pictures on a two thousand dollar camera with two huge spots on the sensor", I say to this drone-like twentysomething.

Truth be told, I'd rather go home, get online and feel alive again.

Scary.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Chaos


Chaos is not necessarily a scary word to me. It seems as if I sumliminally prefer to live my life in it. The older I get the less I worry about organizing and the more I worry about getting the most out of life. Spontinaety rules. I like that about myself.

Today while painting with the kiddos I got inspired to show my chaotic side. (Years ago I used to paint abstracts and produced a line of greeting cards and a series of paintings which my sister so graciously hangs on her walls. It was a chaotic time in my life. I was lacking direction and I was guided by pain and sadness. My art was produced out of pain.)

Today I watched my almost-four-year-old swirl the brushes around on the paper. I enjoyed watching him select the colors and mix them together. He's thinking in colors. How cool is that? (My other son--who is 21 months, prefers to try and put the paint in his mouth so we are not yet able to officially experiment with colors. Give us a few months though.)

I usually am banned to just watching my sons create. Today I grabbed that brush and decided to try using myself as a canvas. How chaotic is that? But it felt good to let go and to see my aging self in vivid tempura colors. The red felt good, the yellow-even better. Then came the green which inspired me to mix all of the colors on my face together. Amazing. Crazy-yep. Fun-yep. Silly--you betcha.

Having kids puts you back into a life of chaos. No longer are your actions your own. Your schedule depends on them, your reputation is defined by them. Your self image becomes burried deep in the sands of time. You look at yourself and feel lost, overweight, out of style--and old. I struggle with this so much.

It's taken me a few years--but I am finally embracing it all--this stage of life --the kids have taught me the art living in the moment. I thrive in the chaos and I share it with them. And today it was all artifically "colorful", passionate and beautiful.