the magic of a camp wedding

camp pinnacle

well, friends, i did it. i had my first real ( = paid!) photography gig today. and it was totally amazing.

i spent my day shooting the wedding of a former co-worker, who hired me just after i posted my photos from ulrika and micke’s wedding in sweden this summer. today’s wedding was also outside, but it was at a camp – camp pinnacle in hendersonville, north carolina. about 45 minutes from asheville.

the setting was gorgeous. the festivities were festive. and the whole thing was relaxing, fun, and real. the bride and groom had rented out the camp for the entire weekend, so all of their friends and family could stay at the camp – in cabins or in tents – if they wanted. what a fabulous idea.

so, as i walked around, ran around, hunted photos, and took the traditional, expected wedding photos, all i could think about was how lucky i was. how lucky i am. and i was honored, totally honored, to be a part of this day – to witness two people share their love and commit their lives to each other with their friends & family.

i thought back to the days when i worked as a minister, and how i had the incredible privilege of being a part of very intimate, special moments in peoples’ lives: births, weddings, deaths, major life changes and decisions. it was humbling work.

today, i felt that exact same feeling. as i walked around, shooting the couple as they wiped the tears falling from their eyes and reciting their vows, i knew that i was witnessing a very special moment. and that is something i don’t take for granted. and to have the amazing honor to get to capture those moments with my camera, a front row seat (though i wasn’t sitting at all, of course) to the biggest day of their life, and a sneak peek into their families and the love that they share… i was truly humbled. down to my soul. magical.

the other thing that i felt today, as i wandered around the camp, taking candid shots and nature shots, preserving memories of their venue, was that i realized that i was born to do this. i should have been dong this forever. it felt soooooo right. i was somewhere back in the woods, among the trees, alone alone for a few minutes while i took some shots of the bonfire area (where the ceremony would be). in those moments in the woods – just me and my camera, i felt such deep peace, that i knew i was exactly where i was supposed to be. and this was exactly what i was supposed to be doing in that moment.

so, on the eve of the week of my 40th birthday, i cannot imagine any greater gift than feeling such deep peace as i felt today, a true sense of knowing who i am, and the opportunity to chase and follow and make my dreams come true. to spend this day photographing happiness and love… it was perfection.

and now, my friends, i am tired. exhausted. but, in an beautiful, wonderful way. so, i’ll bid you goodnight. and i’ll keep you posted on when the photos from lain a and jason’s wedding today will be up on my photography website. for now, here are a few sneak peeks from my iPhone today:

camp pinnacle adventure IMG_7600 camp pinnacle camp pinnacle camp pinnacle camp pinnacle swimming

camp pinnacle camp pinnacle camp pinnacle wedding bonfire IMG_7569 camp pinnacle camp pinnacle IMG_7562 cabins camp pinnacle wedding reception wedding prep wedding reception sunset camp pinnacle wedding

eeeeee!! i am so happy and excited! peace + love, my dears.

hanging out together

asheville

how has a week passed already?! i promise that it is not my intention to post only once a week. i mean, in all reality, you may not care. you may even like it better. but, i don’t. i really, really loved when i posted practically every day. it was not only a way that i stayed connected to myself and all of my thoughts, but i have always literally pictured you, my readers, as i write. i feel as if i am writing little letters to you all when i post more frequently, and though there are many of you that i have never met, i feel like this is where we come to “meet” each other. so, ultimately, i miss hanging out with you all.

speaking of hanging out, i don’t feel like i’ve done so much of it lately. i feel super busy with all of that regular life stuff that i’ve been craving so much. now, let me make this clear, in no way am i complaining about having my regular life back. i’m just saying, it’s been busy. more busy than i feel it’s been since we moved back to asheville, i believe. but, it’s mostly all good. so, what have i been doing?

ushering in autumn with pumpkin spice lattes and candles

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sneaking in a few rides + walks through the woods and up on the mountainsIMG_7056 IMG_7061 IMG_7073

meditating like a champ – and loving every single morning of itIMG_7093

just being aware of the funkiness + quirkiness that is ashevilleIMG_7102

having fika with new + old friendsIMG_7113

getting my hair cut – in preparation for my 40th birthday in a week!IMG_7195

making three dollar champagne night a tradition. boo-ya.IMG_7224

loving the quiet, still, dark mornings at home

home

connecting with more coffee professionals in the area – touring roasteries + getting free coffee beans. i love my work perks
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dog sitting brady while paige (for the love of wanderlust) is off wandering + hiking in peru. me? jealous? you know it!IMG_7258

going nuts getting my brother’s cute bungalow apartment ready to receive its first Airbnb guests!
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drinking mimosas because those first airbnb guests cancelled TWO HOURS before their check-in!!! grrrr!IMG_7309

preparing to photograph a wedding on saturday!!! i’m a photographer! (visited the venue with the bride-to-be… it’s a camp out in the woods + it is amazing!)

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what’s happening in your life? how has it been for you this past week? talk to me, friend. i’m listening. and, i promise to not be so silent here as much as i have been. it’s felt good to catch up a bit. (wouldn’t it be amazing if we could meet for coffee or wine one day soon?!).

love + peace.

here we go!

camera nikon

well, friends. i’ve been working on something in the background for a few weeks. do you remember how i was a photographer for my sister-in-law’s wedding when i was in sweden in july? and do you remember that i had an unexpected announcement at the end of that post? well, due to the wedding and a few people seeing my photos… plus the fact that the bride and groom seems satisfied with the photos… plus the fact that an idea hit me over the head like a hammer… i decided that i’d put myself out there as a photographer. a real live photographer for hire. it seemed that the universe was giving me all of the signs. and i felt it in my soul. it actually felt out of my control, like it was just happening anyway.

and it was. just a couple of days after my sister-in-law’s wedding, a former co-worker in asheville contacted me, asking if i could be the photographer for her wedding in september. so i said yes! i’ve since met with her and we’ve planned a few things, and i’m a lll booked with a photo gig. eeeek!

on top of that, another friend (an instagram buddy) contacted me about a day or so after that, asking me if she could hire me as a photographer for her family – her sister was due to have a baby. of course, i said yes! and, poof! another booking.

so, with two bookings now and the opportunity to take photos and make some money doing what i love, i decided i needed to get serious about this. and my first order of business was a website, which i have been working on for some weeks. lina’s been helping me with logos and such – and she has created a beautiful dreamcatcher and logo. it was exactly what i wanted! and i have had some input on content and portfolio organization. i have worked on this website for weeks now, and i am so very excited to announce that it is complete! it is up! and it is live!

 be.love.live. photography is officially in business!!

(click above or below on the images)

belovelive photographyIMG_6442

so, here i go. out there in the world, camera in tow, ready to capture all kinds of moments – big and small. ready to tell my story, your story, the human story through images. i am calling myself a travel + lifestyle photographer, someone who takes photos for weddings, family events, gatherings, etc. all the regular thing. but, i am also for hire for freelance photography. need a photo for your business? contact me! need a photo for your book, website, real estate company, or home? i can do it. plus, if you see any photos on my website that you like, they are available for purchase. an easy shop will be coming soon. i’d also love to hang some photos in a gallery.

gaaaah! i am so excited, so overwhelmed! you know, the more i let this sink into my bones, the more i realize that this is perfect for me. i’ve carried a camera around with me non-stop since i was a teenager. last week, as i was stressing out about how to organize things, i found myself randomly sitting beside a professional photographer of 40 years from new york city. we sipped tea together and he gave me advice. and you know what that advice was?

“stay true to yourself and get started now. you are already a photographer.”

me selfie ego photography

so, here i go. adding another piece of the journey to my life. opening another chapter and beginning on a new page. and i am so ready! so, go on over to http://www.belovelivephotography.com and check out my website – see my approach to photography, and how i seek to capture harmony + wildness in the present moment.

thank you for all of your support and encouragement along the way… thank you for commenting on this blog and giving me photography pep talks. you may not know you’ve done anything, but this blog, and all of you, dear readers, are a big reason that i can take this step. last fall, you helped me begin writing – and i am still doing that, still being published in the newspaper, only now i also have a column on the web and a chance to grow my writing opportunities as well. you supported and cheered me on all through that. and now, here i go again. chasing another dream, building on that which i have had the joy and pleasure to create in the past year. thank you… from the bottom of my heart!

now, let’s take some photos!! and don’t forget… if you need a photographer, no matter where you are, i’d be honored to capture some of your life’s moments and tell your story through images.

 peace and love. xx

“all glory comes from daring to begin.” – eugene f. ware