Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Holiday's are Coming!!

Yes, holiday season is coming... and so are stacks and stacks of holiday cards. Below are the designs Whimsical Photo Design is featuring for this upcoming holiday season!

Cards can be printed on your choice of regular UV coated paper, pearl/iridescent paper, watercolor/art paper, or a linen textured paper (extra charges may apply for some speciality papers and coatings).

Packages are sold in 25 card allotments and some color and text variations are available upon request.
5x7 flat cards - $40.00 (plus tax)
5x5 folded cars - $45.00 (plus tax)
5x7 folded cards - $40.00 (plus tax)

We will automatically place pictures from your 2008 session on the card, or you can schedule a special Holiday Mini Session. The mini session is $75.00 and includes 3 digital photos and 25 holiday cards. It's a really great deal! Holiday Mini's must take place before November 15th to ensure holiday delivery on cards.

Please e-mail me directly (susan at whimsical photo design dot com) for more information!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Portrait Studio Disasters

Does anyone REALLY want to go back to the 'old' days of photography?
I know it was cool in 1982...

Take a look at this blog for a good laugh!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Olympia Senior Pictures - Black Lake High Shool

So last Friday I went out and met up with PJ to do his senior pictures. PJ is best friends with Ron. Well, they both have a lot of the same interests in dirt bikes and 4x4 trucks, unfortunately PJ's bike was broken, but we had an awesome time shooting around his truck.

PJ and Kirsten - Thank you so much for having me come out to do the shoot. I had a blast with you guys!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

My Wonderful Husband!!

Sometimes he's just a sweet, sensitive, and caring individual. I shouldn't say sometimes... almost all the time! He came home the other day from work, bringing me 4 fresh red roses. I guess after 5 and a half years of marriage he still loves me.

Here is me being sappy... I love him too. He makes my entire world a better place! So cheers to my hubby! He's a good guy!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Olympic Peninsula Adventure

Last Saturday Jason, Maggie and I had quite an unplanned adventure. We woke up that morning without a single idea of what to do. We had breakfast and we were sitting in the living room trying to figure out how to spend the day... when at 9:15 am our phone rang and planned out the entire day for us!

Every summer, Jason's fire department participates in a firefighter exchange with a firefighter academy (university) in Poland. In fact, last June, Jason went to Poland for 17 days to participate in the exchange there! Over the last 4 years, we personally have played host to exchange student, taking them on some sort of adventure, hiking at Mt. St. Helen's, a Husky football game, etc. Well, when we got the phone call on Saturday, we ended up with 2 Polish exchange students who were desperate to see the Pacific Ocean. We loaded up Curvy (for those of you who don't already know... I name EVERYTHING. The car - Honda CRV - is called Curvy), with a cooler of picnic items and headed off to take the guys, Michael and Maceak (pronounced Ma-jick), to Copalis Beach.

The day was glorious... one of those late-summer days that is 85 without a cloud in the sky. That is, until you come within a quarter mile of the Pacific Ocean. Then the temperature drops by 20 degrees and it's socked in by fog. This is what we were looking at as soon as we arrived...

Of course, this didn't stop Mabster from enjoying herself...

and our new friends seems to enjoy the beach a bit too! (Oh... and there IS an ocean behind them, but good luck locating it!)

Did I mention that we were freezing?!? It was a nice day when we got dressed... but we quickly ate and packed up our picnic to get out of there. We quickly made another decision in our adventure! Since Jason and I have never really made the loop around the Olympic Peninsula, and the guys were up for a scenic drive, we decided to go for it.

Our next stop was Lake Quinalt Resort located just south the of the Hoh Rain Forrest. I should mention that this is a true rain forrest and one of the rainest, cloudest places in all of world. They really only get a handful of days that are actually sunny... well, a quarter mile from the beach, and it was again 85 and sunny. This is what we found when we got to the resort!!

See... the sun really was shining that day! You can see the moss that just hangs from all the thick trees in this rainy area.

The resort is absolutely STUNNING - these are the grounds from the hotel down to the beach...

Our new Polish friends enjoying the sun, the beauty and the warmth!

And I would like to take a moment to comment on my daughter's behavior. She's a curious handful, but a really a sweet natured child. She did throw a pretty good tantrum though when we pulled her away from the beach. So we stopped in at a little quaint mercantile across the street from the resort and she was once again happy when presented with a lollipop.

So onward we continued our journey. At this point, we had been in the car for about 4 hours, and there was no turning back. We only could plug along!! But it was my turn to drive, and soon out of Lake Quinalt, I found myself alone with Dave (Dave Matthews kept me company on the CD player!) while I had a sleeping husband and child and two sleeping friends. It was ok, because the drive was stunning. I was so glad I am the only one who enjoyed it!

But some of you may remember my silly addiction to the Twilight books I wrote about back in July. Yeah, well, we went to Forks - where the books take place - and i was extremely excited, not to mention extremely embarrassed, to find the car they are using for the movie! Whoo hoo! I know all my Twilight lovin' gals out there will get a kick out of this. But I did see the Thriftway, Olympic Outfitters and the Dew Drop Inn... if you've read the books... you know what I'm talking about. I didn't really have much more of an opportunity to take pictures in Forks, but I have to say... Nice town! I was really impressed!

Onward we plowed through Port Angeles and into Port Townsend. Jason and I decided to take the guys to a nice little pub there is town we discovered on our last stop-over in Port Townsend. Well, after spending 8 hours in the car, Maggie had no intention in sitting to eat her dinner. So I took her out to run around on the boardwalk and we were treated to a lovely sunset. Oh... these are straight out of the camera shots with no editing! The moonlight shot was a 3 second exposure!!

So now it's dark, it's 8 pm and we are quite away from home... So we got in the car, headed to Bainbridge Island and caught the 10:30 pm ferry from Bainbridge to Seattle. Now our Polish friends hadn't yet had the opportunity to see downtown Seattle. They had only been in town for about 5 days of their 4 week journey, and when they flew into Sea-Tac airport, they were shuttled off, not getting a chance to see the town. So the ferry ride, on this oddly windless, warm and balmy evening was the first they saw of the town. This isn't the best picture... but you photographers will appreciate what I did to get it this way! It is shown straight out of the camera, hand-held, on a boat, moving quite quickly! It was shot at ISO 6400, f2.8 with a 1/15 shutter. Not too shabby... a tad noisy... but not too bad!

So that was our adventure! We dropped the guys back at the fire station around 12:30 am, got ourselves home and fell into bed around 1 am just exhausted! It was such a fun drive though... and I cannot wait to go back up and explore a little more in detail.

Friday, September 12, 2008

The Smith Kids - Family Pictures in Mountlake Terrace

Last Saturday I met up with the Smith family! Colby and Mia were about as cute as they come and they both loved the camera. It's fairly unusual in this age group to have two kids who just enjoy having their pictures taken, but they were both were totally into it. In fact, Colby had me cracking up almost the entire time. He is a riot!! I just love 5 year olds and their logic. Karen and Brian were so sweet inviting me into their home to do the entire family and I truly enjoyed spending time with them. One of the biggest perks of my job - meeting totally awesome people. And rolling on the ground playing with kids. How awesome is that?!

Karen & Brian - Thank you so much for the opportunity to come do your family photographs. You both are awesome people and awesome parents. Colby and Mia were absolute delights!

Here is Colby...

And the beautiful Mia...


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Boudoir Session Special

It's time ladies to get your girlfriends together, book a Boudoir Session with me, and have a little fun!! Don't be shy... you know you want to!!

What is a Boudoir Session?? A Boudoir Session, as scandalous as it might come across, is actually pretty tame, but totally fun. It is a time to get dressed up in cute lingerie, get your hair and make up done, and be a movie star for an afternoon. We share wine, hors d'oerves, music and in between we take some awesome pictures! It doesn't matter your body type or size, this is an empowering time for you to enjoy yourself and do something you may never of thought to do before!

So what is the special? See below for details. But these little items make an awesome gift for your boyfriend, fiance, or husband... especially around Christmas time. Space for these sessions is limited, so please e-mail me (susan at whimsical photo design dot com) now in order to book your session.

Session includes...
90-minute Photo Session with 3 lingerie changes at the ultra-hip Hotel Murano - Tacoma
20-minutes Professional Make Up
Online password protected gallery with 25 proofs
20-page 4x6 modern photo album

Cost is $300 (plus tax) and limited to the dates listed below.

These sessions are sexy, hot and oh, so fun, and the album of magazine style pictures are a great gift for that special person in your life.

This special is only good for these two dates in October. Full sessions can be booked year round though!
Saturday - October 11
Saturday - October 18

Time slots will be filled by a first come, first served basis. Grab all your girlfriends and book out my entire day. If needed, I'll add some more dates!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Baby J - Lacey, WA Newborn Session

LIttle Baby J was 6 weeks old when I photographed him last Friday. Baby J is the newest family addition to two of my favorite clients; Rachel & Eric. As always, they were up for anything, but we chose to stick with some really classic posing and backdrops so the focus would be 100% on the relationship and feeling of this little guy. Enjoy!

And finally... one with Eric's mom...

Sunday, September 7, 2008

The Senior Citizen Project

About six months go I read an article in a photography magazine about a photographer (and I wish I could remember his name/location... I think I'll have to go back to see if I can find the original article) who started shooting senior citizens in their retirement homes as therapy in dealing with his own parent's passing. The article really hit a cord with me and I found the entire project to be both inspiring and a beautiful tribute.

Enter my own Gammy. Gammy is my 97-year old paternal grandmother with whom I have shared a very special and close relationship. When reading the article mentioned above, I was inspired to give back and start my own senior citizen project for no other reason than to give back. So my Gammy decided to be my first model... isn't she just beautiful?

This one is my absolute favorite:

As a side note... The Mabster was running around in the background wrecking havoc around Gammy's apartment while we were doing this shoot. She went into the kitchen (which I shoo-d her out within 2 seconds), but managed to turn on Gammy's oven and setting a minor fire. Luckily, the fire alarm went off (after Maggie and I left) and the problem was quickly extinguished. However, Gammy will be the lucky recipient of a new oven now...

My mother finds the entire story somewhat amusing and now calls Maggie - The Little Arsonist. Especially ironic when you consider that Jason is a firefighter...

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Dave Matthews Band at The Gorge

This past weekend it was time for Jason and my annual trip to The Gorge Amphitheater in George, WA to see the Dave Matthews Band. You don't need to know either one of us very long to know we are huge fans of the band. We've made it a point to travel all over the nation seeing concerts, planned our honeymoon around a performance of Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds at Radio City Music Hall (New York City) and have spent more money and time seeing this band than just about anything else! I personally have seen over 80 concerts while Jason has seen over 70. Needless to say... we love this band!

Our concert-going-days have slowed since the introduction of The Mabster in our lives, so less time/money means less travel/concerts, but when we do get out, we have an incredible time. This year, we were only able to make it to one night of the three night stand, but what a night we had! On Sunday (which for those of you who don't know is ALWAYS the best night at the Gorge), we packed up the car with beer and BBQ supplies and headed out to meet up with two of my best friends from college, Cody and Christy. We all decided to drive over together; I made beef kabobs, homemade salsa and lots of chocolate chip cookies, loaded the cooler with (a lot) of beer, and off we went. Cody packed his tailgate BBQ and we set up for an awesome evening.

Before starting out, Jason kept Mabster happy by teaching her a few of his old 'frat-boy' tricks. She thought Daddy was hilarious!

After dropping Mabster off with Grandma and Grandpa, we met up with Cody and Christy and drove the 2.5 hours to the Gorge. Once we all arrived at The Gorge, we just sat back, relaxed and had a few drinks.

Christy is also really interested in photography, so after a while, we grabbed our cameras and headed out around the parking lot to find all the interesting little things you can only find at a DMB concert. I was facinated by all the painted cars.

I found this sign pretty funny. The Gorge makes a big deal about people not bring outside alcohol into the parking lot or the venue. Of course, 95% of the people ignore this rule, and the best way around it is to pour your favorite beverage into a non-descriptive cup. The beverage enforcers came around to our tailgate, didn't find any bottles, and then left us alone. Not more than 3 minutes later, a couple of people (with this sign) came around to collect and recycle our beer bottles. Pretty funny if you ask me!

It was in the news about 2 weeks ago, but the saxaphone player, LeRoi Moore, died from injuries he sustained in a ATV accident back June. I wasn't really sure about going to a concert after one of my favorite band members died, but a lot of people had some really nice tributes to the man.

Lastly, just a one more of our friends - they are just the most awesome couple!

Oh... and I'm of the school of thought that every husband should have a kick-@$$ picture of his wife on his desk/locker/space at work. So I made sure to get one of Christy to send to Cody later!

I'd post some pictures from inside the concert... however, I couldn't take my camera into the venue. So sad... as my 4th row seats really afforded us some great photo opportunities!