Joy

While editing last weekend’s photos of Jeff, Louisa, and their adorable, playful munchkins, I can hear upbeat music… wait for it… even when I’m not playing music!

I know, I know how this sounds, and it’s not good.  However, that’s what Joy is like to me.  I can hear happy music.  I can feel joy in my heart.  And it makes me want to go out and hug someone or volunteer in a soup kitchen or rescue another puppy.  (In case my husband is reading this…. honey, it’ll only be 5 more puppies.  heh heh)

Check out my visual story of Joy…

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A Whole Lot o’ Love

I am washed with a feeling of calm and friendship whenever I see Sara and Brian.  They just have that way about them, I can’t explain it, but it’s somewhat magical.

And I’ve known their boys since they were babies.  I still pinch myself that I get to watch these cuties grow up as part of my “job”!

At the end of their photoshoot, Aidan walked up to me completely unprompted and said in the sweetest voice, “Thank you for taking our pictures!”  Awwwwww.  I feel so much gratitude for being able to do what I love…with the people whom I love… in a city that I love.  That’s a whole lot o’ love!

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The B’s Knees

Just like the slang “the bee’s knees”, this family with all B names is the best of the best in generosity, kindness, compassion, and (with the girls) athleticism!

I had such a fun morning photographing Bella, Bailey, Brianna, Brenda, Benny…and their newest addition, Baci, who just turned 1 year old.

I’ve known Brenda since our College days at Berkeley, photographed her engagement to Benny, walked down the aisle as her bridesmaid, photographed her belly when she was pregnant, and known her kids since they were born.  There is so much history between us that it makes for our time together even more precious and her shoots that much more intimate.

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Baci:  “Where’d She Go?”

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When a family takes selfies at the end of their photoshoot, I… PHOTOBOMB THEM, of course!  :)

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Tots To Teens

When you’ve been photographing a family for 11 years, you get the awesomeness of watching tots turn into teens!

It means feeling excited to see how much the “kids” have grown and catching up with the parents.  It also means your subjects can feel comfortable enough to be serious or playful — or anything!

Ahhh, I had a wonderful afternoon hanging out with friends… whom I happened to photograph simultaneously.  heehee.

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Her Everyday Self

There you have it.  I blinked, and now I have a teenager!

Some things I expected with a teenager (a little bit of envelope-pushing that keeps me on my toes) and some things I didn’t (her interests remained the same as the last few years).  Mia still loves reading, collecting stuffed animals (curses to whoever invented Pusheen – haha), creating handmade toys, and the color aqua.

She still wakes up at 6am no matter what, laughs at my jokes, and can’t resist picking up any book she passes on her way to eating/sleeping/showering/leaving/doing her homework.  :)

She is the same big-hearted, caring soul as when she was a toddler giving away all her snacks to her friends even when she was hungry and the preschooler who rushed to cheer up crying strangers at the park.

For her birthday shoot this year, we agreed it needed to represent her everyday self.  It can’t be “styled”, like the Fairytale Shoot.  Or while wearing things she doesn’t normally wear, like the hat in last year’s shoot.  So Mia wore clothes she’d wear to school, brushed her hair, and grabbed her favorite baseball cap and a book that was lying on the table.  Simple.

We drove 5 minutes from our house since the location wasn’t the highlight; it was my Mia Pie.  ❤️

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Sunshine When it Rains

When it’s foggy and drizzly, you have to make your own sunshine!

Jasper, Willa and Ansel, along with their parents, had fun running around Golden Gate Park in San Francisco last weekend.

Was it dark and wet that day?  *shrug*  We didn’t even notice!  :)

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Most Delicious Light of 2017

Here is Part 2 of the Favorite Images results!

MOST DELICIOUS LIGHT OF 2017

Photos considered in The Most Delicious Light category were images where light played a significant role in the overall image (i.e., if the light was different, the quality, mood, or story of the image would change).

#1

Diagonal shadows and light at bath time

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[FYI:  This image isn't originally cropped this way; I cropped it more at the bottom out of respect and child safety.]

#2

The parting fog under the bridge

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#3

Fantasy-like glow on the beach

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#4

Brown reflected light from the forest floor

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#5

Pure white light
[Commercial Photography]

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#6

Light from above

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#7

Sun after weeks of rain lit up the moss on the trees

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Tied for #8

Morning fog rolling across the lake

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Sun-kissed tree swing

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#9

perfect storm of sunlight:  reflected light on the family, sun streaming through the trees to light up the background, and a ray of light as backlight!

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Click here if you want to see last year’s Favorite Images.  Don’t forget Favorites of 2015 too!
Are you still reading this?  Ooh la la… okay, here is one more:  Favorite Images of 2014:)

Best Moments of 2017

Each year’s Favorite Images results are always surprising to me.  This year, we had the most ties.  It was also a year that had the most Commercial Photography images selected.  The list is long, so I am splitting it up into two parts.  Here is part 1:  results of the Best Moments of 2017!

BEST MOMENTS OF 2017

A “moment” can be a split second in time, or it can be a moment that tells a story — whether sweet, emotional or humorous.  Some images could fall into both categories of “moment” and “light”, so the decision was based on the weight each factor had on the individual image.

Tied for #1 

Pink Unicorns

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Music Class
[Commercial Photography]

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Tied for #2

Parental Guidance

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Sibling Affection

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Tied for #3

Dudes Dancing

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Love and Laughter
[Engagement Shoot]

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Tied for #4

Peek-a-Boo

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Biggest Smile

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Tied for #5

Educators Do More Than Teach
[Commercial Photography]

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Golden Color Cast (from a blade of dry grass that blew in the wind)

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#6

Friendship and Support
[Commercial Photography]

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In Full Color

Like the many hues and shades of colors, there are many feelings to sense, people to meet, and experiences to have.  To live a full life is to have as many of these as possible.

Priti and Rachad know how to live life in full color!

Last year, we had a sunset shoot on a boat in the Bay, and last weekend, we shot early morning in the Mission District between garages, litter, and bikers.  We embraced the contrast.  Regardless of when and where we shoot, this family has all the feels.  You may even be able to tell we had a little bit of fun too!  ;)

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Blessed

Once in awhile I have a family shoot that floods me with mushy feelings of how blessed I am.  This weekend’s family was one of them.

I’ve been photographing Dave and Winnie since 2009 when their only baby was Colby, their puppy.  We brought Colby all around town and even into a bookstore (shhhh, no one saw).  And then I saw them in 2011 to photograph their darling baby girl who wore a little tiger onesie for her one year old birthday.  I remember “Bina” smiling through all the outfit changes.  Her little face was — and still is — heart-melting.

To watch this family turn into a family of four (five, counting Colby) and then see the kids grow up makes my heart swell.

Alright, let’s get to the photos!  We have to start with this series of Dave and Oliver because I can’t stop looking at them without smiling.  ❤️

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