Where do I even begin with this year? Two words: life changing.
A proper tagline for 2016:
Take care of the people that take care of you.
I entered 2016 with zero expectations. 2015 was a fantastic year and I'm one of those people that has always lived with the thought that, "ok, 2015 was a good year, so 2016 will probably just be an ok year. We can't have it all!" SADLY MISTAKEN - in the best way possible, of course. This year has resulted in taking myself to greater heights. Never did I anticipate the year to bring me two celebrity cover shoots, a published styled shoot with one of my favorite floral designers (hi Rochelle!), working and meeting other creatives from all different backgrounds (and states! ha!), an increase in clientele, and opening up a new avenue to my business. Because remember, I walked into 2016 with no expectations.
I'm going to be giving out quite a few shout outs in this blog post, and let me just start by saying, it may or may not be my most lengthy post to date. I just feel like I have so much to say about this year, and the best way to do so is by exploding my words onto this amazing and new forum of sharing. So brace yourself - because again - I got a lot to say...
To all of my amazing families I worked with this year, I LOVE YOU. You all mean so much to me. I have said this before and I'll say it again, I love families that invest in photography. I'm so grateful to my parents for documenting my life so well and reminiscing on all of those photos in adulthood has been so incredible. Your children will appreciate all the time and planning that went into our sessions together one day. It brings me joy that you all take the time to do this! Due to working with SO MANY of you this year, I cannot share photos from every session, but I will share a few of my favorites that were easy to grab...
My wedding clients were INSANE. I feel so lucky to document and be a part each couple's special day and so honored that they chose me to be a part of it! Here are a few favorites from my weddings this year...
Angelica Vailton - If there is anyone I owe so much of this year to, it's you. I knew this girl had incredible talent, just no one to take her under their wing and help her get going. So, I did. Instantly, I knew Jell was the real deal. She's incredibly kind, talented, HONEST, and has my back. She started off as just someone assisting me at weddings, but ended up as one of my dearest and most trusted friends. Sadly, she's leaving me next summer as she ventures into the next season of her life. That next season is taking her to Texas. While I'm absolutely heart broken (and that's not dramatic - I've cried several times already), I'm so excited for her new adventure that life has presented her. Jell, you have kept me sane, encouraged me, and never let me down. You've endured my crazy OCD, long drives, and incessant phone calls (I know there were so many and you probably wanted to kill me half the time!). You are truly one of the best people I have ever met and I feel so lucky to have you a part of my life. It's been amazing to watch you grow and achieve your goals as a creative and I can't wait to see what's in store for you! You're a forever friend and I love you dearly!
Bev Cameron - So much to say. Bev, her family, and I are coming up on 3 years of working together. Boy, did that fly. They quickly went from clients to FAMILY. I have been documenting their special moments since their daughter Kenzie's 1st birthday, so I feel like I've grown alongside them. From family sessions, birthdays, blog content, Disneyland, flying to Colorado - you name it, I've probably shot it with the Cameron's. No really, though. I feel incredibly blessed to be a part of their journey. Watching Bev and Michael's children grow has been a constant reminder of why I love working with families so much. You evolve with them. And sometimes, if you're lucky, you teach their kid the sound of a firetruck and it sticks (*we oh we oh we oh*). Bev has supported so much of what I do and has brought me some incredible opportunities this year I will forever be indebted by. Several months ago she asked me if I would do the blog content for her new blog/site (which you can visit here) and it really made me start thinking outside of the box and pushed me to open up a different avenue of my business. Little did I know, blog content has become one of my favorite sessions to shoot! I cannot wait to see (and document) what 2017 for Bev and her family. I have a feeling it's going to be a really good one!
And then there is one of my all time favorite creatives, Alex Michael May. I'm convinced she's made of pixie dust and rosé. It has been so fun working with Alex and getting to know her this year. Alex KNOWS humor. She is one of the most quick witted people I have ever met and made hours of shooting way too much fun. From our long drives, I really got to know Alex's core and her goals. I love meeting genuine creatives and people with REALLY good souls. I love ya, lady! I can't wait to work together in 2017. You're a gem of a human!
Can't forget about Molly Schoneveld aka my favorite publicist ever! Meeting and working with Molly this year has been a dream. She is such good people and I've loved each project and shoot I've been lucky enough to work on with her this year. I'm couldn't be more excited to continue working with her in the new year and can't thank her enough for the incredible support!
Does anyone else love flowers? Well, good (for those of you that do!). It was a great year for Rochelle Leigh Wall and I working together (yet again!) and getting our creative muscles extending beyond our norm. I'm so proud that our styled shoot we worked on together for six months was published by Burnett's Boards. You can view it here. We also got to work on a couple weddings together, and you know it's immediately going to be an amazing wedding when Rochelle's behind a lot of the magic. I love you, lady! I'm grateful to have you a part of my life - both personal and professional. I cannot wait to work together again in the new year!!
And then there is Emma Rose, my incredibly talented and amazing friend and website designer. She is the reason I can even write this blog post! She created such a beautiful website for me to grow with for years to come and I couldn't be more grateful. Earlier this year, I went to Emma's home state of Washington to visit another friend and got to meet Emma (and her little lady Riley!) in person and have a little shoot out. It has been so nice getting to know Emma on a personal and professional level and can't wait to see her again! She's one of those people you know will be a part of your life for a long time. Love you, Em!
To my wonderful family and friends - thank you for being such a huge, unconditional support to me every step of the way! I've had to sacrifice time being with you all at some points this year due to work, but I appreciate you being all being my cheerleaders through life and just simply happy for me. I look forward to spending more time with you all next year and love you all immensely.
And last, but certainly not least, my heart, Brian! If you all are connected to me on social media you know how much my partner means to me. Thank you for your continued and unfailing support this year, crazy weird hours, love, and encouragement. I look forward to continuing life with you! Can't wait to see what year 4 has in store for us. I love you!
I'm so grateful. And I'm lucky to have you all a part of the ABP journey.
Here's to 2017! I'll see you all soon. Same me, different year.