Well! My life has been super hectic lately and, while I usually enjoy being busy, this has been a wonderful mix of the good and the bad. As I mentioned briefly in my last post, I went to ImagingUSA at the end of January - my 5th year! This was my second time as a PPA member and bringing Damien with me to go to business classes meant I could attend lighting and posing seminars (aka the fun stuff). I didn't really like Atlanta, especially considering how great and photogenic New Orleans and San Antonio were, but it was also cold while we were there. If I'm going south, it should be warm! One thing Atlanta does have though is FANTASTIC barbeque. Seriously, I ate it non-stop, and there was a really neat little hole-in-the-wall near our hotel that had some of the most delicious pulled pork I've ever eaten. At the Expo this year, I finally bought a floor! This way I can lay it down on top of carpets or ugly tile and have beautiful baby pictures on a gorgeous wood background! I tested it with my camera-friendly pets when I got home.
After getting home (and figuring out our car situation because mine broke) I was able to start shooting again! First on the list was my friends Rev and Rose, a super cute couple I know. He's a piercer and we have a great barter system. It's always a good time photographing them because Rev knows the shots he wants and so is the art director, and once we get those, Rose and I are like "yay, let's play!"
I also stopped by The 3rd Annual Pittsburgh Rock Music Awards - turns out Liz Berlin of Rusted Root owns Mr. Smalls (I had no idea!) so I got to take some pictures of her playing in between awards. Craig from The Pittsburgh Scene gave out the Best Alternative Awards and my friends Children of October got Best Punk Album which was really exciting!
After that, I had a (almost) 3 month/Valentine's shoot with a beautiful baby girl named Audrey. She is ridiculously adorable and her mom Bonnie is so sweet and excited about her daughter. We had a slight meltdown, but it happens and you just have to know how to handle it. This is why I always schedule in some extra time for baby shoots - the kid is totally in charge! I had recently knitted a couple baby hats, which Audrey modeled and looked super cute in.
Right about the same time, I hit 1,000 fans on Facebook!! Sooooo excited about this, it makes me feel really loved and hopeful for the future of my business. I had a giveaway of a free session, which was won by a guitarist I know. I went to his house and photographed him for his website (he's a guitar instructor - go to http://www.patrickmaloneyguitar.com) as well as took some pictures of his new daughter Cambria. She's about 2 months old and so sweet! It's nice seeing my friends happy and being good, loving parents.
Mid-February, my friend Sherry, who lives in New Jersey, came to visit for almost a week! I rarely see her for more than 2 or 3 days at a time so was really excited to get to actually spend a significant amount of time with her. Neither of us realized when she booked her train that she got here on Valentine's Day, whoops. Oh well, our boyfriends were probably glad they didn't have to buy us dinners. Poor Sherry had to deal with me practicing makeup skills and taking her picture while she visited, but we also did things that were fun for us both, like go to a concert and the Aviary! I've been wanting to go since I was about 16 so it was awesome. Also, they have a sloth. Seemed like a weird creature to have in an aviary but it was exciting to see, even though it was rather camera-shy. The eagle with one wing was a bit heartbreaking, but absolutely beautiful.
Last week I got unexpectedly stranded at Damien's for a few days when his car (which I've been using until mine gets its new engine) needed repairs and it ended up taking a lot longer than anyone thought it would. I vaguely suspect our mechanic hates us....we cause so much trouble for the poor guy. Luckily, I was able to borrow Damien's grandmother's car to get to work Friday and my shoot on Saturday. It was a milestone shoot - Zahara just turned a year old! Her parents, godparents and I wandered around Phipp's Conservatory with her and had a great time. Cute baby, pretty flowers, it was a good day.