Friday, November 15, 2013

Why Firefly?

What do you think of when you hear the word firefly?

I think of summer nights, running around the yard with my brothers.
I think of the magical touch of nature.
I think of playfulness.
I think of the country, tall grass, and simplicity.
I see twinkling lights and space to explore.
I hear quick footsteps and giggles.
I feel nostalgic, treasuring a part of growing up and a piece of home.

When I started thinking more clearly about what I really want my photography to say and do for people, I realized my true desire was to spread those same feelings I feel when I think back on those nights of catching fireflies without a care. I want my clients to get that sense of playfulness, feel the magic of a special moment, enjoy and explore the beauty of our surroundings, step away from life for short time and treasure the little things. I want to provide people moments worth capturing so that every day they walk into a room in their home, they can see the genuine faces of loved ones on their walls. They can pull a book off the shelf 20 years later and show a friend or grandchild what happiness looked like in a different season of life.

I hope that Firefly Photography is able to bring some joy to you and your family that will last and a warmth to your home like the perfect summer night.

Please visit my new website and blog at 

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Top "gives and takes"

To say that I’ve grown in my knowledge of photography and business over the past year would be an enormous understatement. That said, I can empathize even more now with good old Al when he spoke these words:

 “The more I learn, the more I realize how much I don’t know.” Albert Einstein.

It would be deprecating, though, to diminish the scale of what I’ve accomplished thus far; so while I stare ahead at the massive number of steps I have yet to take, I also celebrate the ones I’ve already taken. This time last year, those steps seemed wild, too. Whenever I started to reflect on the steps and broke it all down, I realized that like all other relationships, the one between a dreamer and the dream requires a balance of give and take.

Below, I’ve narrowed down some of my largest lessons from my first year in business to share the top 3 “gives and takes.” While I wrote under the scope of my photography and the direction I’m taking it, I think these tips could be adapted to fit any long term goal you might be striving towards.

1. Give your clients your focus.
When you put others, (their needs, wants, and happiness) at the core of your focus and let those things drive your decisions, you will be blessed in turn by the result! Doing something just for you can be therapeutic, sure, but doing something for someone else is fulfilling. Think about it- how often do you see people participate in activities “in honor of” someone? They could just run 5 miles anytime for the heck of it, but placing someone or some cause at the center of that run can power drive, awareness, and commitment to a whole community! The more you tie your own goals to a greater purpose, the more impact you will create all around.

2. Give your business your heart.
The spark that starts it all will urge you forward, even when you come across pieces of the road that aren’t your favorite. There are pros and cons to every job, but the difference between being able to do something and loving what you do all goes back to the heart.

3. Give yourself the tools you need to be successful.
Yes, you can give to yourself. Upfront investments, time, equipment, whatever it is you need to reach your goal, you need those to reach your goal. You can’t do things halfway and expect a full result. Sometimes it takes a lot more time that you want it to. Or money. Or work. But the truth remains: to be better you have to get better. And you have to give yourself a fair chance at it, too.

1. Take education seriously.
Wanting something badly enough does not make you good at it. You might start with some natural inclination and ability, but while passion is the core, it doesn’t get you very far without action to go along with it. Take your ability to learn and the gift of innumerable resources we have available in this world; take it into your own hands! Not everything is just going to come to you; sometimes you have to go out and find it for yourself.

2. Take advice and criticism with a grain of salt.
Guidance from others is precious and revered but just remember that you are unique (that’s a good thing) and what worked for them may not be right for you. Seek and learn from other people, but use those lessons to shape your own philosophies and solutions.

3. Take every opportunity.
Sometimes opportunity may come knocking before you feel ready, and in that case, act like you’re ready and go for it anyways. My business design, focus, market, products, (pretty much everything) has changed 4 times over the past year. Had I waited until finding just the right model to launch, though, I never would have discovered all the things from a business in action that ultimately developed what I feel is going to be the most consistent, appealing, and productive system for my clients to date. When opportunity comes knocking, you have to run towards it, not away.

I hope that my own little life lessons inspire you somehow to give and take a little more in your life today!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Beat the Cold for your Fall Photoshoot

Life doesn't freeze when the weather gets colder; we just have to adjust. That applies to your photoshoot, too. If you have the opportunity in your schedules to get family photos taken, there's a milestone that needs commemorating, or whatever the case may be, you don't have to wait until the trees are blooming and you can break out the sundresses for those pictures to be great. You just alter the vision! There are plenty of ways to get around location woes by shooting indoors or getting creative with your background, (for more on that, check out this post). But don't take the outdoors off your realm of possibilities just because it's chilly. Trust me, I am no fan of the cold and I'm sure that my Hawaii-aquainted-blood will be shocked by those winds come December, but even I can endure the cold for an hour, especially if we're running around and having fun like any of my typical sessions. Fall fashion is full of opportunity for mixing and matching patterns, color, and texture for some really striking images! Check out these suggestions of outfits that will not only flatter, but keep you much warmer than those sundresses when there's a chill in the air.

Ps. All these pieces are in stores now at Target, Macy's, and Old Navy!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Color Block

Maybe it's all the HGTV. Maybe it's the hopeful (one-day) home-owner in me. Or maybe it's just because I'm an artist at heart. Regardless, I'm fascinated by color. I've been digging into inspiration for the new branding of my business which will kick in in exactly 1 month. (Hear that, Virginia fans?! It means I'm now booking for appointments in early December; get in touch now and we'll still be able to shoot in time for you to send updated photos in your holiday cards or create the perfect gift for someone in your family!! )

I'm also one of those people who is terrible at making decisions. By that, I mean I usually change my mind 3 times before landing on one particular answer for any given question. I look at everything from multiple angle and try to analyze the best possible solution. Hence, the evolution of my color scheme and business branding thus far; it's taken me as long as I've lived in Hawaii (1.5 years) to go through and try out several options, add, subtract, alter, enhance, design, re-design, and re-design again. Some may call this "overthinking." It is. I'm working on it. It's also kind-of necessary, from a creative mindset at least. From a business mindset, though, I am determined to land on a look with which I am confident and can remain consistent upon our move. Check out some of the palettes I've creative from images that have inspired me lately and maybe get some ideas for sprucing up the color in your life!

Ps. One of these is the "winner" for my new design... but you'll have to wait to see which one!