If you have followed my blog for any amount of time, you would have heard me mention my friend Itt, who happens to be the last human being on earth who isn’t on Facebook. I try not to hold that against her.
Itti has been one of the biggest supporter of my photography journey. She is so supportive that she volunteered to be my first glamour shoot model. Unfortunately our schedules conflicted, then I was sick, blah blah blah, and it only took 2 months for our shoot to actually happen.
When we finally got shooting, magic happens.
On the weekend, I met with mama, baba, and Mr. T for a family session at the Olympic Village. This fun trio braved the cold air and had their first EVER family photo session.
Sometimes I marvel at the people who come into my life, and place a great deal of trust in me for their precious memories. I take it very seriously that they are relying on me to capture real and timeless images of them in a short amount of time. Thank you, mama and baba and T. I hope you had as much fun as I did.
There’s nothing better than an old friend making an announcement on Facebook that she’s expecting, and then message you to arrange for a maternity photo shoot. Christie and I met way back in our young and foolish university days (well, Christie was the young one and I was the foolish one). She is one of the most studious people I know. While the rest of us were trying to figure out what we wanted to do when we grow up, Christie knew she wanted to be a veterinarian–and that is what she is today.
It was so nice to meet Nick and see how much he adores my lovely friend. He seems to have a good ability to make Christie laugh.
Ivy and I met for the first time on the day we moved in together as roommates back in our university days. I am just one super lucky chic to get someone like Ivy as a roommate. She has the biggest and most gentle heart, and she put up with all my pranks. Even when I don’t see her for a long time, we can always pick it up where we left off last time.
Ivy bravely volunteered to be my model. I loved the photos, and I love Ivy.
FYI, the bottom two photos are Ivy wearing a traditional Singapore outfit.
Last time when I photographed my friend Lisette, she gave me a little taste of what modern glamour portraits can look like. I was hooked. It was hard for me to admit that I was hooked, because I’ve always seen myself as the families and babies photographer. So what happens when I am now entering unchartered waters? I have no idea what it means. I don’t even have a gallery category on my website for this type of work!
Erica bravely volunteered to be my model. I am not sure if she knew what she was getting herself into. Ha. I was studying like mad for the days leading up to the shoot, trying to remember all the rules about making a successful portrait and all the posing instructions. I was nervous.
Well, I think the results were amazing. I had a lovely model with a great wardrobe, and an awesome team of hair stylist and make-up artist. There’s nothing more I could ask for. Other than the images looking amazing, if I may say so myself, I felt like they captured Erica–intelligent, fun, successful, confident, and a go-getter.
Back in October, I wrote on my photography Facebook page asking for ideas for volunteering opportunities as a photographer. My awesome photog friend, Maria, replied and told me about the Help Portrait Vancouver event. Once a year, photographers, hair and make-up artists and editors come together at the Union Gospel Mission in East Vancouver to take portraits for people for free.
Some of these people coming through the door have not had their portraits taken in many years. Some moms would not have portraits of their babies because it is already a struggle to keep everyone clothed and fed. There were people there from all walks of life, and everyone loved having their photos taken and printed on the spot.
The event is nothing short of incredible. Five studio were set up, each staffed with 3 or 4 photographers. Beau Photo in Vancouver donated the use of a whole bunch of equipment, Bread Garden donated fresh food, Starbucks donated coffee, professional photographers hauled in their studio lights and equipment, and we all pitched in to make people feel special and beautiful.
At some point during the event, I became the Chinese grandma specialist. Because I could speak Mandarin, the organizer just started directing all the Chinese grandmas to me. They were all so sweet, and so happy to have beautiful portraits taken of them. It was very heartwarming to see their big smiles. Unfortunately I can’t keep or share their photos with you here because I do not have copy right to their portraits.
Here’s a photo of Maria and I after the event, taken by the very talented (and very funny) Gerry Rousseau.
We also made the news on CBC:
The Help Portrait segment starts at 13:48, with yours truly photographing a Chinese grandma.
The first time I photographed Miles, he was not even a year old. He was very set on holding a plastic yellow oval that was a part of his shape sorting toy set.
Now, Mr. Miles is no longer a baby with a yellow oval. He is a big guy directing where we go next on a photo shoot. And he has a gorgeous baby sister who has the brightest blue eyes.
My friend, Itti, reminded me that I have been forgetting to put my photography business blog entries on my personal blog. While the majority of my friends are on Facebook and usually see that I share my blog status on my personal Facebook page, it’s easy for me to forget that not everyone is on Facebook. So if you start seeing duplicate entries again, this is why.
A few weeks ago, I was in the mood for shooting something different. I wanted to experiment with a few things I learned. I put it out there on my personal Facebook page, and my brave friend Lisette volunteered to model for me.
Lisette is not one of those ladies who do anything half heartedly. She was a totally committed model. We talked briefly on the phone about wardrobe, and she showed up with a suit case full of clothes and shoes for us to choose from.
What was even more amazing is this–you see these beautiful images of her below? Yeah, she just finished running a half marathon 2 hours before these photos. Amazing! She was super fun to work with, and I just love how she brings simple shots to life.
I started the 365 project in December 2013. The purpose is to take one image a day and share it. I have a few people to blame for inspiring me to do this (including you, Maria!).
Honestly, most days, I am just mad at myself for committing to such a
stupid long project. Finding something to photograph every single day is not the easiest thing to do. And I’m not always motivated to download and edit the images I took the same day (and that’s why sometimes you see me post a week’s worth of images all at once). I have missed a bunch of days, and I don’t like all the images I shared. Most days, I can’t wait for this to be over. It’s a long and torturous death.
But then there are days I feel so inspired–inspired to try something new, inspired to shoot the same thing from 8 different angles to tell the story I want, inspired to capture that exact moment one of my kids makes an expression I love, inspired to find creativity in the mundane. Those days, I think, man, I can do this forever.
So what I’m trying to say is, it has been very rewarding yet torturous at the same time. On one hand I can’t wait for this to be over, and on the other hand I am loving pushing myself to do something with my photography on a daily basis.
Today I have no photo to post, because I took about 20 frames on the film camera. I have to finish the roll first and send it in for development (what an old school concept!). I’ll share one from the roll next week.