Friday, May 20, 2011

2011 Waxahachie Senior: Mackenzie

I think Seniors are one of most favorite groups to shoot. They are just so much fun and always up for anything. Meet Mackenzie, she is a 2011 Waxahachie High School Senior. 
Mackenzie is one of those super fun girls who never meets a stranger - she has such a sweet personality and can have fun no matter what the situation!
Mackenzie is thinking about becoming a nurse - she also loves photography - you know she instantly scored brownie points when she told me that! ha
I loved the fact that she wore her prom dress for some of her pics!
Ok the (above) picture is one of my favs from this shoot - there is just something about this one that is just glamorous to me ;)
Kenzie - you have amazing eyes!
I really adore this one as well - its just fun - and it just reminds me of a perfect Texas summer ;) Oh and Kenzie - you're adorable k? k!
Mackenzie: I had a blast working with you! I wish you the very best as you start this new, exciting adventure. Remember, you can do anything you set your mind too - don't you dare cut yourself short ;)


Monday, May 16, 2011

Don & Kasi

I met up with Don and Kasi over spring break for a "in love" shoot. They were so much fun! I had not seen them in years so it was nice to catch up :)

So let me just tell you how excited I was when Kasi told me she had a key to the Chautaugua Auditorium and wanted to take a few pictures in there as it's a very special place to her and Don. 
 See, Kasi is the executive director of the Waxahachie Community Theater and they do the majority of their shows here. You should definitely check them out this year - right now they just finished up Annie (which was my all time favorite movie as a child by the way) and they will have other productions in July, October and December!
It was really cool being in there - I came close to living out my childhood dream of being a famous actress and almost broke out in a song and dance routine...but I refrained. 
 We then headed outside to take a few pictures around the park. What I really loved about these two was how genuine they are together. The laughs and smiles and the way they look at each other in these photos are completely real- there were times I had to tell them  to stop smiling and laughing. You can tell they really love being together and really are each others best friend and biggest fan. ;)

Don is the music director for the Waxahachie Community Theater and has also been the Music Pastor at Crossroads of Life Church in Cedar Hill for the past 12 years. They are both such talented, amazing people. They also have three sons, and one sweet grandbaby - which I could tell they are very proud of!
This last picture is one of my all time favorites. I really hope they cherish this picture forever, to me it describes them perfectly and catches a glimpse of this amazing, wonderful time in their life. It's such a "in love" moment. I just adore it.

Done & Kasi - thank you for allowing me to capture such great memories - you two were so much fun and gave me some great laughs! I really enjoyed working with yall and hope to see y'all again soon!


Monday, May 9, 2011

Women Mini Session: Shannan

Meet Shannan

  Shannan is seriously one of the strongest women I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. Over the past year I have gotten to know her on a much deeper level and let me just tell you she is amazing. Shannan is extremely crafty and creative and has some serious scrap booking talent! You can check out her blog here! Shannan is so much fun to be around - she just makes everything fun - she is also one of those "tell ya like it is" type of people - which I LOVE!
Shannan did the Women Only Mini with her sister, Shelley - I absolutely love these girls! This photo makes me emotional every time I see it - I just think all sisters should have a photo like this :)
A little over a year ago Shannan's world was completely rocked - her world seemed to crumble overnight - her husband passed away very unexpectedly. Instead of letting tragedy define her she found her inner strength and is an incredible fighter - not only for herself, but for her two precious boys. I have said several times how important having photos taken of you and your loved ones are - that is one reason I pushed this Women Only session - because I think women are pros at putting off having their photo taken - after talking to Shannan one night I asked her if I could share a little bit of her story - it just felt so heavy on my heart - thankfully, she came back and said YES AND that she would be happy to write a blurb for the blog. Below is what she sent me:

"I have always been a ham. I loved being in front of the camera, loved being on stage. I've always been tiny and cute. And skinny. But life happens, kids happen, and we gain weight. The last professional family portrait we had taken was before my youngest son was born. He is 8 now.  Josh and I were going to lose weight. We had a great plan...we were going to have great pictures taken as soon as we were skinny and fabulous.
But Josh died last year. As I was looking for photos to use at his memorial service, it struck me. We had been so wrapped up in our own insecurities that we hadn't allowed our journey to be documented. 

It turns out we were fabulous all along.
I vowed right then and there to let those insecurities go and embrace who I am...embrace my family and enjoy being on the other side of the lens. After a long, hard journey through some of the most difficult days of my life, I reconnected with my inner diva. It turns out that I am not just a mom. I had let that define me for so long that I lost track of myself. It took spending some time with a very good friend to help me realize that inside me is a gorgeous, brilliant, sexy, and interesting woman. I have things to share with the world other than how my kids are wearing out their jeans on a weekly basis or comparing growth rates and orthodontist bills. Stephanie captures that, and I love it. I love having my picture taken, and I can’t wait to look back when I am old and re-live my amazing journey." 

I'm not gonna lie - I read her email about 10 times and cried each time. I know we have all been there - there is always an excuse - but sometimes its too late. I love the line: "It turns out we were fabulous all along." Because you are all fabulous and beautiful just the way you are - in this exact time in your life.

  Shannan - thank you for teaching me oh so much about strength, love and class. The way you have danced in the rain is beautiful. You are a inspiration to so many. Keep fighting friend ;)

Shannan left me with this quote - I have heard it several times before and its one of my favs - you may even need to read it a few times to really let it sink in. During a really difficult time in my life I would wake up every morning and read this out loud to myself for about a month straight. It is powerful. Shannan thought it went perfectly with the entry and I couldn't agree more...

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?' Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won't feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in all of us. And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

  - Used by Nelson Mandela in his 1994 inaugural speech


Friday, May 6, 2011

Women Mini Session: Johnna

Meet Johnna
Doesn't she have gorgeous eyes?!?! They are the perfect shade of green! Johnna is actually family, she married my cousin - you probably recognize her from this session :) Yes, that was the pregnancy session and they have since had a little girl named Kaylyn who in already EIGHT months old! 
    I really love this picture because Johnna has a great laugh - she is always down for fun and can be hysterically funny. She is one of those friends who is just easy to be around - someone whom you feel like you don't have to entertain or get all fancy for - you can just relax and have a total blast!
Several years ago, Johnna and her husband had a house fire and it destroyed everything. I do mean everything, it happened in the middle of the night and happened so fast they did not have time to do much of anything except get out of the house. I don't know about you, but I could not even begin to imagine that pain and devastation - Johnna is so strong, she bounced back and they were quickly on their feet again, this woman has amazing strength!
Johnna came with her BFF, Shanna , for the mini session - they were so much fun (I mean judging from the pic above how could you not have fun with these two?!?)  They looked absolutely AMAZING - they even made their husbands take them out that night! SCORE!
Johnna works for Rosa's Cafe - she works in the corporate office and handles all the paper work/billing/etc... If you have never eaten at Rosa's you need to get your tooshy there pronto - cause its dang good! (No, I am not receiving anything free from Rosa's for that - but I will gladly accept it if they do.)

I asked Johnna to tell me three fun facts about her - this is what she said:
1. "I get super excited about small things"
2. "I cry at weddings and births - even in movies"
3. "I can do the MC Hammer"

Raise your hand if you would like to see her do Hammer Time! haha 

Johnna -

The photo above is my most favorite from the session - not only do you look adorable, but I love that it says 
"You Rock" - you do rock - don't you EVER forget that!


Monday, May 2, 2011

Women Mini Session: Darla

Meet Darla
Some of you may recognize Darla from this post .  Yes, she was my Austin bride last summer! Let me tell you how excited I was when she booked and was driving all the way from Taylor with her bff (and maid of honor) Natalie! I was so thrilled to see them again! As you can see, Darla is incredibly photogenic - I was seriously giddy editing her photos - look at those eyes! GEEZ! Darla, you are BREATHTAKING!
Darla and her husband, Ricky, have four kids. When I asked Darla what her greatest achievement was she said "being a mom" - I'm sure you have your hands full, but your kids are so lucky!  You are such a gorgeous person both inside and out. 
I'm really loving the (above) photo - I just feel like it captures so much of who Darla really is - she is so laid back, fun, easy going and someone who I could spend the entire evening laughing and talking with. She really is such an amazing woman!
This is absolutely one of my most favorite pictures of all time. I really cant pin down just one certain thing that I love about it - I just love it! And can I just say one more time - YOUR EYES - o my lordy your eyes are glorious! 
When I asked Darla to tell me one thing you would want the world to know about you she answered: " I follow Christ, and more than anything I hope people see HIS light in me." 
Let me assure you Darla - I can see His light - you have such a beautiful spirit ;)