coming up for air

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Wow! I am finished! It's hard to believe I don't have another wedding to photograph until New Year's!

Between now and then I have plenty to keep me busy. You should see my To Do list (or maybe not). I have emails and phone calls to return, portrait sessions to schedule (holiday card season!) and albums to design (For those of you who are ready to begin the design process, I am eager to get started now! Thanks so much for your patience as I focused my attention on the busy fall wedding schedule).

I'm excited to have a little extra time to resume a more normal schedule of exercise and to catch up with neglected (that's such a sad word) friends and family (as always, thanks so much for your support!). My sister and her family are moving to Maine in a few weeks, and I'm thrilled to have them closer. And J and I will be traveling to visit his family during the holidays.

And quite frankly, I cannot wait for a deep tissue massage to rid my back of those knots from lugging around that heavy camera equipment!!

I'll keep you posted on it all, of course, and will surely share any studio news as my search continues, etc!

Many, many thanks to all of my '07 clients! I value your trust and friendship immensely. Each and every day I feel so lucky to be my own boss and be able to do what I love and it's definitely because of you all!

xo

* Ashley and Nat

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venue: York Harbor Inn York, ME
officiants: Nat's mom & dad
ceremony musicians: Harvey Reid and Joyce Andersen
florist: Katherine's Garden York, ME
cupcakes: Party Favors Brookline, MA
dress: Hussey's General Store (really!) Windsor, ME

Meet Ashley and Nat. They ooze sweetness, don't they? These two met in college in Boston, have traveled the world together and currently live in NYC.

They planned a beautiful seaside wedding at the Hartley-Mason Reserve in York, but unfortunately the weather did not cooperate. They were married in the ballroom at the York Harbor Inn instead.

They were disappointed to be indoors, but honestly, their ceremony was so touching and so intimate and- unlike if we were outdoors under umbrellas- everyone was comfortable. Their love of the Red Sox was even included in their vows!

Ashley did a great job keeping her spirits up while getting ready, and had everyone laughing as she described how she didn't want her veil to look.

I love this brief moment with Ashley and her mom getting ready.

We did manage to catch a break in the rain to sneak down to the beach for a few minutes during the reception. Personally, I love the romantic feel of the fog from these images.


There are many adorable smooching moments between Ashley and Nat from the day. These are two of my favorites.

When I met Ashley and Nat, Ashley told me how much her grandmother means to her and she asked if we could duplicate an image she has from her grandmother's wedding. And although the setting did not allow for that scene to be copied, Ashley, I have a feeling that one day you might have a grand-daughter who will want to copy some of your wedding images. Your wedding was both sweet and simple, and truly touching. It was the last wedding of my regular season and I was honored to wrap up my season with you both and your fantastic family and friends.

eye sight for insight

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I received this excellent thank you gift from liveBooks for speaking at their booth at PPE. What a cool idea, huh? I'm touched. Be sure to check out the Seva Foundation website and see what great things they're up to if you are not familiar with the organization. My pleasure, liveBooks!

(click image to enlarge to read)

Yay Sox!

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Congrats to the Boston Red Sox and the Red Sox Nation faithful! What a great World Series! We loved cheering on our team, and are also thankful for the sweep so we can get to bed at a more normal hour! ;)

* Virginia and Pete

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venue: Pineland Farms New Gloucester, ME
officiant: Nicole Todd
florist: Yarmouth Flower Company
dj: Danny Diabase Greg Powers Entertainment
cake: Foley's Bakery
invitations: Teresa Lang
dress: Andrea's Bridal Portland

Due to a family health emergency, Pete and Virginia postponed their May wedding until October, but they went on their spring honeymoon to Jamaica anyway and exchanged their vows there. In front of many friends and family, they recently renewed those vows at Pineland Farms.

Pineland Farms is a 5,000 acre working farm (see the homemade jam!) and business center. The day before Pete and Virginia's wedding, it poured! Amazingly, the sun shone brightly on their wedding day!

Virginia arrived to the ceremony in a horse-drawn carriage.

The sun was in a harsh spot for photos, so instead of fighting it, I embraced a little flair for their recession up the aisle.

Speaking of light, how gorgeous was the light inside for their first dance?

Virginia and Pete are adorable together. I loved watching their sweet interactions throughout the day.

Congratulations again, Pete and Virginia! I am so glad it worked out to photograph your "second wedding"... I would have loved to have joined you for the first, too!! I look forward to seeing you around Portland!

FetchDog.com

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A few months ago, web designer Joe Myers (a 2005 groom who now lives in Utah and has a very fun blog) contacted me about doing some freelance work for FetchDog.com, a new website and catalog based right here in Portland. After a lot of work, the site is finally live!

Here is Joe's description of the site:
"FetchDog is a new, high-end dog catalog company. The shop is full of great dog products and gift ideas. There's also a ton of information in the Learn & Connect section: articles, blogs, breed centers, resource libraries, e-zine, puppy center, adoption info and much more to come like forums and ask the experts etc. (no interactive stones unturned). And if you're considering getting a dog, try the breed selector tool to see what breeds best suit your personality type and lifestyle. On top of all that, there's a quickly growing social community section called MyFetch where you can create a profile for you and your "family," upload pictures, write on your whiteboard (mini blog), recommend products, save wishlists and grocery lists, compare notes with other owners and make other contributions throughout the site. Your dog could even be the photo of the day. It's been a lot of work and late nights. I've designed almost every page on this site. The company is full of great people and well funded by involved investors including Glenn Close, who has her own blog called Lively Licks, Profiles of Dogs and Their People."

My riveting (sense any sarcasm?) product photography can be found throughout the drug library. Photojournalistic work will accompany some of their blogs soon.

Congrats, Joe! The site is chock-full of information! I can't wait to spend some time on there creating my MyFetch page. I know how hard you worked on this, and you should be very proud! I wish you all amazing success!

mail surprises!

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In addition to excited puppy dog kisses and wags from Dakota and Destin when we returned home last night, there was some great mail waiting for us too (even tho it's mostly only bills, mail is one of my favorite parts of the day. Really).

Check out these beautiful note cards clients Alisa and Coley had made in my business colors! I love them, and am beyond touched by their thoughtful gesture (as a side note, J and I ate at Butter in NY where Alisa's uber-talented brother Zac is the pastry chef. We highly recommend it! Yum!).

At Emily and Steve's wedding last month, I loved the home-made hot chocolate served. Emily and Steve sent us a very sweet card, the secret recipe and a lovely gift card to one of my favorite places (can you guess where? I'll give you a hint: pumpkin).

Last month I received these beautiful painted wine goblets from Barbara Berman. I rented a room in Barbara and Greg's house for a summer when I interned at the Cape Cod Times. Now retired, Barbara is busy doing what she loves! Her goblets have been picked up by a shop in Nantucket and Woodstock, NY. Each is hand-painted, signed and includes a special note card. I love the cranberry and hydrangea goblets so much, that I ordered a special set of wildflower glasses as birthday gifts. If you're interested in ordering a set, please contact Barbara at kristiancapecod@mindspring.com.



And in a different sort of special delivery, congratulations are in order for J who became an uncle for the second time this morning. His sister Gretchen gave birth to Gus in Cincinnati! Congratulations on your growing family Gretchen, Mark, Oliver and welcome Gus! We're so happy for you and can't wait to see you in December!

NY wrap-up

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Wow. What an experience! Many thanks to those of you who came to hear me talk at the liveBooks booth at PPE yesterday! It was so wonderful to share my experiences with you, hear yours and field some questions, too, especially from Susannah Dambmann, Larissa and Ryan of Chace + Smith Photography, Chris and Heather DiPiazza, George Pejoves and Barbara Williams.

I don't have any pictures of me speaking, but this is what the scene looked like (taken w/ my point & shoot- please excuse the poor image quality!). I spoke in front of those chairs on the left side. J has a sweet little video on his blog of the liveBooks booth scene **here**.


We drove home last night (intently listening to the Sox game!!), and are busy catching up on work today. I'm heading up near Bar Harbor tomorrow for another assignment for Ladies' Home Journal.

NY update and Pink Ink blog interview

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Having a blast in New York! I have seen so many friends during the last few days- both from the wedding and news world- at the PhotoPlus Expo.

On Wednesday evening we attended a party at Jason Groupp's studio and caught up with Marcus Bell, Becker and Jessica Claire (crazy red eye on the picture of us), LaCour, the Bebb's, Carlos Baez, Ron Dawson, Amber Holritz, Dane Sanders, Phil Mantas, Frank DiMeo, Shari Silk, and Frederick Van.

Thursday was spent walking the trade show with my first boss from the Cape Cod Times, Arnold Miller (now the multimedia editor at NewsDay and Roots Workshop instructor) and photographer Steve Heaslip. I was thrilled to see Ed Kashi, National Geo photog and my photo professor from my study abroad during college nearly 10 years ago. I also caught up with David Jay, Garrett Nudd, Dasha Wright and David Murray.

After a visit with my college roommates Matt and Josh last night, we stopped by the PhotoShelter party before going to 230 5th Avenue- a swanky rooftop lounge (w/ palm trees!) overlooking the Empire State Building. It was a perfectly warm night to spend with Jon Lucich and Corey Miller (J's colleagues from liveBooks), Mark Adams and others. We ended the night at a biker bar in the meat-packing district with Dave Luebke and the Eaton's- craziness. ;)

Today I visited with friends from my newspaper days, and had coffee with a couple whose wedding I am photographing in the Dominican Republic in May. The bride, Machell, is a style editor at Bride's Magazine so I am very much looking forward to the details of their destination wedding.

A quick Q&A with Pink Ink Studios was posted on their blog **here** as part of their Friday "blog mixer" parties. Take a peek at their product line when you have a minute, and not just because they love pink as much as I do. The designers are extremely talented.

I'm now practicing my talk for the liveBooks booth tomorrow. I've had nightmares all week that no one will show, so fingers crossed I can deliver a good talk to those who do! Wish me luck!

PhotoPlus Expo, NYC

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We're heading to Boston tomorrow night, and then to NYC through Saturday for the Photo Plus Expo at the Javits Center- a huge photography conference and tradeshow. Unlike the wedding photography conference I go to in Las Vegas each winter, this encompasses all areas of photography- fashion, editorial, fine art, weddings, travel, portraiture- you name it! There will be 20,000 photographers and vendors attending.

I am very excited to be speaking at the liveBooks booth at 11:30a on Saturday morning. If you are attending please stop by and introduce yourself!

Here is my talk topic (click image to enlarge):We'll also be attending parties for PhotoShelter, Digital Railroad and GraphiStudio.

I'll have access to email and phone while I am traveling, so don't be afraid to get in touch. Have a great week!

* Thomas

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When I bought my house two and a half years ago, Tamika Donahue was my mortgage consultant. Sitting in her office crunching numbers, she shared stories of her previous career working with Gorham photographer Brenda Donovan. During some recent communications, Tamika shared the exciting news that she is expecting her second child! In honor of her husband's birthday later this month, I photographed their family on the beach near the house in the Higgins Beach community. We had about 10 minutes before our light was gone!

How adorable is her son Thomas?!


And a few quick pictures of the fam.

If you're looking for a mortgage broker in the Portland area, I highly recommend Tamika!

* Kate and Jonathan

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ceremony: St. Brendan's Chapel Biddeford Pool, ME
reception: The Colony Hotel Kennebunkport
band: Kahootz
florist: Blooms and Heirlooms
cake: Hippie Chick Bakery
dress: Madeleine's Daughter Portsmouth, NH

Kate and Jonathan used to do their Calculus homework together at Colby College. Kate's friends (and mother!) used to ask why she wasn't dating him. Her reply? "If I date him, I'll marry him." And that's exactly what happened.

Kate and Jonathan now live in NYC, but chose to have their wedding in Kennebunkport. They were blessed with an amazing fall day.

** Click here ** to view the slideshow.

Jonathan's mother's darling friend Pablo helped Kate with her make-up. Applying her mascara, he shows Kate how to make wide eyes.

It was a very emotional moment when Kate's father came in to see his daughter.

Enjoying the ride in the sweet Bentley.

Beautiful natural light in the chapel.

At the colony.

Kate's rings have a squared backside, so that they don't slip. How neat! Jonathan proposed to Kate on a ski slope at Park City Mountain Resort. All of the tables were named after trails.

Kate is so expressive. It was very fun capturing all of her faces throughout the day.

These two were up for anything!

Congratulations, Kate and Jonathan! J and I had a blast capturing your beautiful wedding and spending time with your families! Can't wait to hear all about Italy when you get home!

Many thanks to Sue and Ray Hunt (the parents of Maggie whose wedding I photographed last year) for connecting me with Kate and Jonathan. It was so great to see you both at the wedding and catch some of your slick moves on the dance floor. ;)

As a side note, if you are looking for a band, Kahootz is amazing. Everyone was on their feet all night long!

pink and brown

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Happy to know there are other people who enjoy my business colors as much as I do (thanks for sending, Margaret)!

Check out the Pink and Brown Love blog.

introducing News Wedding Photographers

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On the heels of that not-fun post about the studio, I do have some exciting news to share! As I'm sure you have noticed, there has been a mystery logo in the left sidebar that says News Wedding Photographers. It's a project I have been working on since May! If you click on that link it will actually take you to a website now!These days, photojournalism is a very popular style of wedding photography and it can be confusing to inquiring brides and grooms to know who is legit and who is imitating the professionals. News Wedding Photographers is a directory of wedding photographers who have a background in news photography, like myself.

I am announcing NWP's launch here first, and will be sending out an email campaign to industry colleagues within the next few days! Please pass the word if you know a photographer who meets the requirements!

change of plans

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Wow. What a week. Since I last wrote I have experienced pure elation celebrating the new studio and today, the disappointment of letting it go.

Without getting into too much detail, let me explain. On Monday J and I went over to pick up the keys from the landlord. A pleasant conversation quickly and unexpectedly turned into a heated confrontation. It was as if a switch was flipped when I asked a few questions or didn't know something that he, repeatedly, told me was basic knowledge in commercial real estate. I, obviously, have never done this before and was completely confused, not to mention scared, by his manic behavior (At one point he stormed out of the studio, muttering under his breath that he wasn't sure if he wanted to do business with me anymore. And then stood outside the storefront window laughing with his business assistant. He came back in a few minutes later and said that we had obviously gotten off on the wrong foot, that he wants a tenant who doesn't give him any hassle, and that he would dissolve my lease without penalty. WHA?). I was shocked. And tearing-up. It definitely wasn't how I imagined the key exchange to go!

Afterwards we both had a sinking, icky feeling in our stomachs that wasn't going away, especially after talking to some of this guy's other tenants (they have nightmare stories! Lawsuits! Fist fights!). It's a beautiful space and the rent is fantastic for the area, but is it worth the stress of having a landlord with a short fuse?

It was a very difficult decision! Ultimately, I went with my gut feeling and decided it's not worth it. I turned the keys back over to them today and accepted the offer to dissolve the lease without penalty. I am disappointed, but also somewhat relieved- I really feel as tho I dodged a bullet with this guy. Starting this exciting chapter in my life with such bad energy in that space was a toxic situation. The right studio space is out there, I know it.

I'll be sure to keep you posted.

* Emily and Steve

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ceremony: Saint John the Divine Southwest Harbor, ME
reception: Kittredge House; Tremont, ME
catering: Sassafrass Catering Town Hill, ME
cake: Celebration Cakes; Hulls Cove, ME
flowers: Sweet Pea Gardens Surry, ME
dress: Monique Lhuillier

As Emily and Steve chatted about Emily's beautiful engagement ring at our initial meeting last winter, Steve explained that he didn't want to get her a "pineapple cut." Boy, did we laugh out loud when we realized he meant "pear." Too cute!

Emily (the first time I have photographed a bride with the same name!) and Steve have dated since high school! Their wedding day, just about 10 years later, was a beautiful day, full of their own unique touches. They had a small, intimate celebration with 40 guests at a house they rented (host to a few LL Bean photo shoots!) on the water in Tremont, Maine. For those of you not from Maine, that's part of Mount Desert Island- home to Cadillac Mountain (said to be the most eastern point in the US for viewing the sunrise) and to adorable villages including my favorite, Bar Harbor. There were no toasts and no dancing, just scrumptious hors d'oeuvres, lawn games and conversations with friends and family.

Steve delivered some pretty roses to Emily the morning of the wedding, w/ a card, appropriately dated for the big day! The well-loved stuffed animal was on the bed... a gift from Steve when they were in high school. Wow. Such a neat reminder that they met as kids.

Emily purchased make-up for her wedding day, but hadn't had much practice putting it on. I helped her with her eye shadow (a first!), and caught this great expression when she was putting on the mascara.

Beautiful ceremony details.

A few details from the house where the reception was held. Gorgeous!

I took the picture on the left, and J took the image at right. Love seeing the two different perspectives of the same moment.

Mr. and Mrs.

I spotted these fantastic chairs on the porch and knew I needed to spend some time w/ the flowers here.

And the entire group.

Congratulations, Emily and Steve! It was a pleasure working with you, and both J and I really enjoyed ourselves. Thanks for making us feel so welcome!

ShootQ

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Our dear friends from LaCour in Atlanta have designed an amazing web-based studio management software program for photographers called ShootQ. They have been on the road to educate photographers about their product since June, and will be making a stop at the new studio in Portland on November 14th. Be sure to take a peek at the informative ShootQ website here, and if it looks like something that might benefit you and your business, sign up for the set-up party here (attendance required to purchase the software). I love it, and I'm sure your business will benefit from it, too! ShootQ is also a sponsor of Roots Workshop.

545 Congress

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emilie inc. has found a home at 545 Congress Street in the arts district of Portland!

As you all know, I have been looking and looking for a studio space since I moved here three years ago. I nearly signed on a place in the Old Port by the water, but it needed a complete overhaul. Then I nearly signed at an old mill in Westbrook that was move-in ready and the rent was right, but I wasn't crazy about the location. Then I considered buying a loft condo in Portland, but knew being tucked away in an upper level residential building would be a bad move for exposure. At long last, while peeking in the windows of vacant storefronts on Congress Street the other week, I found it!

545 Congress used to be the Patagonia store, for those familiar with Portland. It's in the same building as White Heart (a trendy, urban lounge), the downtown Portland events office, and an organic Greek restaurant scheduled to open later this month. The upstairs consists of several New York style loft condos- a trend that is taking Portland by storm. Across the street is an LL Bean outlet store. And within a block is the Maine College of Art, 555 (a favorite upscale restaurant), a Starbucks (I'll do my best not to OD on pumpkin spice lattes) and many other shops and eateries.

Tracy Davis of Urban Dwellings is helping with the redesign of the space. I stumbled across her website months ago when researching the loft condo trend in Portland and am thrilled to be partnering with her on this project.

The space is nearly 2000sf (plus 800sf of storage in the basement. Wow!). There are soaring ceilings, bamboo floors, an exposed brick wall and low-voltage track lighting. There isn't too much work that needs to be done... aside from painting, cleaning, removing the counter & fitting rooms, and decorating (the fun part!). I hope to partner with a few other like-minded wedding vendors eventually (a bridal boutique of sorts), but will move forward with the renovations on my own at this point.

I hope to be open by mid-November and will surely keep you posted of the progress here. Be sure to check back for updated pictures! But for now, here are the "before" snapshots:

This is the exterior of the building. My space is on the far right. R to L after that is: the Greek restaurant (not open yet, so there is no sign and newspaper still shields the windows), the downtown Portland events office, and White Heart (which has al fresco seating at night. I wonder if the Greek place will too? Love that).



There are neat lamps just outside the storefront, as well as flags w/ Portland's motto: love. life. more. They just installed those beds and planted trees over the weekend.

Inside! Loving that exposed brick wall. And yes, the lime green paint is going immediately! As is the counter and florescent lighting (the track lighting stays).

Looking back toward the door (if you look closely, you'll notice LL Bean across the street in the left image).

This is the second half of the space, which will make a great shooting area, or room to expand with another vendor (or heck, tap dancing classes). The fitting rooms will be removed.

And this is me, alone in the new studio for the first time!

I am ecstatic about this! And, to be honest, I'm also completely terrified. Great rewards require great risk, as my mom likes to remind me often. I'm definitely up for the challenge! Thanks so much for your support during such an exciting time! emilie inc is growing!
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