Thursday, July 31, 2008

Impact Tip - Moving In

There are a lot of changes going around here at the Vrai studio and one of them is that we have moved to Chicago! I am so excited to be here and enjoying the city. During the move, I had to go out and get some new furniture for the new space and I wanted to be true to my style and get great furniture that in essence is antique, reused, refirbed!

Then I realized that is a great thing to share with all the new couples that may be looking into a new home and needing some new furniture. A great option is going to estate sales, antique shops, and design shops to find furniture that is already in the market and reduces the energy costs of building new pieces and the shipping costs associated. Also, you can be pretty sure it is one of a kind!

I found some great stuff in the neighborhood at GRID, (btw, working with Greg and Robin was so great so be sure to check them out down here in Pilsen). Also, on the way home from Jenni and Jared's wedding in Michigan, I stopped at a great antique place outside of Kalamazoo, that was a blast too!

Check it out! The new space and new stuff that really isn't new at all!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Photo contest - Pick me!

I decided to enter the WPD photo contest this year and all three of my entries made it to the finals out of 2700 entries! I am excited but I need your help to win, I am already a week behind in the voting. If you like my photos, go to the contest site and vote! Here are my entries...

Monday, July 28, 2008

Lauren and Bryan

Saturday was an emotional one, these two were surrounded by love and fun and it was very touching to watch. We are so thankful we were able to be a part of this day!

We also got to work with some great people this weekend!
Amy Vaught of Vaught Events was the day of coordinator and helped everything run smoothly!
Sonia Roselli is always so fun and excellent with the make up!
Dustin from Toast and Jam provided the excellent dance music
Kevin from Maggiano's was wonderful to work with!

I love this shot Molly got of Bryan just before he left for the ceremony This is a great shot Molly took of Bryan as he first saw Lauren

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Impact Tip - Finally the big news!

So some of you savy bloggers may have figured out by now that myself, Patrick and Jacklyn (the other VIP's) were up to something green and you are right. We have started a new blog featuring ways and tips for photographers to do something good for their business and lifestyle...MAKE AN IMPACT :)

This blog is geared towards ALL kinds of photographers as a resource to "green" up your business, find out what other photographers in the industry are doing to make an impact, fun random tips to save green, business ideas, and much, much more. This will be beneficial to your business if you are interested in making your studio green as we will have a green certification and resource list available for prospective clients to find a eco-friendly photographer.

We have a forum for people to communicate ideas, a gallery to look at pretty pictures of nature :), lots of links to find even more ideas, and just a fun place to go when you have time to waste while you are waiting for your latest photos to batch for example ;)

There are already several posts from all the ecophotogs including our first VIP interview with Anna Kuperburg!

So go check it out, add it to your blog roll, and tell me what you think! Ecophotog Blog

And for your amusement ecophotogs in the morning after talking about this all night in Atlanta :)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Williams Family

Yesterday was doubly good because I got to hang out with the Williams Family too and meet the newest addition to their family.

I love this shot because Blake got a tattoo of his 4 children's names and I asked him if there was any more room on that leg ;)

Cheri and Mia

I had the pleasure of shooting Cheri for baby #2 yesterday and sharing that with her daughter Mia who I have known since she was in the womb :) I am excited to watch both of them grow over the next year!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Sarah and Tony

Yesterday I had the pleasure of getting to know Sarah and Tony a little better before their wedding that is coming up this September. It was truly a fun time, I can't wait for the wedding!

Julie and Ryan

Molly is going to be shooting Julie and Ryan's fabulous wedding at the Adler Planetarium this September. Here are some shots from their esession.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Impact Tip - Mark your calendar

Yesterday I attended Walk The Talk's Shmooz fest invited by my friend Bria Day, the sister of Landi, a bride I had the priveledge of working with last fall. Bria has started a non-profit organization to get local Chicagoan's interested in making a lifestyle change and improving their health and wellness. Of course this is in line with my philosophy because wellness and protecting the environment really go hand in hand. We need to keep our greenspace as part of our wellness, not only for the environment but for us too. So when Bria asked me to shoot it, I decided I would go one step further and sponsor the event. And I am a proud sponsor at that! :)

I will also be shooting their beach volleyball tournament on July 31st and the fitness scavenger hunt on 8/21 so sign up to get involved with your community and feel great! Be sure to check out the website for more details

Here are some pics from last nights event, even Alderman Fioretti stopped by to show his support!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

A much needed break for climbing

So for my first trip out this summer I had quite an adventure! The weather wasn't so cooperative but its the reason for the adventure so I won't complain...actually it was an amazing time with really good friends!

The first day was the MOST ;) We headed out to roadside crag to do some trad. Aaron wanted to get on Andromada Strain a 5.9++ trad route that is one of the Red River Gorge classic routes. The weather started out perfect. So we took a look at the route, Aaron decided he didn't have enough pieces to do the route but he was confident he could make it so he headed up the route inching his cam up for 35 feet before he could place it securely, it was a tad intense :)
Aaron working his way up this crack, you can see his hands are taking a beating... Needless to say, he got the onsight, first try, a very awesome achievement. Next up was Kadile... and then the thunder started...thats ok, I still have a turn to go :) So Kadile finishes very excellently and its my turn and now the rain. So I climb it as quickly as possible, meanwhile Aaron is getting a little wet from the rain that has come...minutes later the storm is directly on top of us and we need to get moving so I come within a few feet of the top and have to come down. I am lowered in a full on waterfall created by the storm and Aaron quickly rappels down after me. We all get under this cave by some boulders to wait out the storm...completely drenched! Then we see that in his hurry to get down, Aaron forgot one of his cams. He is determined to retrieve it and heads back out into the rain to get it. He can't even bring his glasses because it was raining so hard he couldn't see out of them! So he headed back up to get his cam and then climbed down just in time for the storm to pass. It probably only lasted 30 minutes from start to end but it was a crazy 30 minutes :) After all that, his hands took a real beating, the life of a crack climber :) Its hard work climbing with all this gear. The rest of the day turned out nice and we headed out to the Great Wall in Muir Valley. Here is Kadile working hard for his 10.c onsight Good friends and climbing, dream life ;)

Sunday was rainy so we didn't climb that much but Mon was perfect so I got out on Super Dario at Eastern Sky Bridge an 11a that wore me out! And Aaron worked on a 5.12a crack that was insane. We tested out some gear and he took a 25 ft fall on a piece and almost landed on me....good times :) Everyone is safe and we can't wait to do it again.


Friday, July 11, 2008

Impact Tip - Earth911

I know, I'm late...yesterday was total chaos trying to get to and from the airport took me 3 hours! So I completely forgot it was Thursday, but here is part of what I was doing so hopefully you will forgive me ;)

You might remember in April I went to visit my very pregnant and best friend Lauren...

Well she had the baby, a beautiful baby girl named Esme (sounds like ez-may) and they were in town until yesterday. It was the first time I got to meet this adorable little baby and here are a few of the snapshots I got of her.

I mean come on! Those cheeks are insane :)

Now onto the impact tip. Ok, this web address it might sound a little dramatic but my mom shared this site with me and I think it is worth sharing. They have a ton of great information about what you can do to get involved, start recycling, start composting, educated yourself on greening up your life AND the workplace which is another hint for the big unveiling next week of my new secret project ;)

So while you are anxiously awaiting the news, check out this site.

Enjoy the weekend!! I know I will, my first one off since April ;) And you guessed it, I am going climbing!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Diana and Matt

Diana and Matt got married at Our Savior's Luthern in Naperville this weekend with a fun reception at the Arrowhead. This party was hoppin' thanks to the DJ's at Sounds Abound and the super fun group of people. We were so happy to be a part of this fun day :)

I thought this was appropriate considering how nervous they were :)

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Impact Tip -VIP Part 2

As promised, I am revealing another partner in crime in my new collaboration to make an impact. The other notable is the actual instigator, Patrick Williams of PWP. I met Patrick at the LaCour workshop last summer and it just goes to show how it all comes full circle. I was able to go to the workshop because of a donation I made to Thirst Relief which was started by the first person to ever tell me that I could make it in this business and thus gave me the confidence to do it. It just boggles my mind sometimes how each small act of kindness can bring another positive impact in my life and the life of others, and so here I am, teaming up with Patrick and Jacklyn and I may not have met them had it not been for one persons act of kindness...but I digress, this is about Patrick :)

Patrick has recently realized that there are better ways to be professional and serious about his passion without wasting numerous resources. His enthusiasm and dedication to researching new methods of shipping, presentation, carbon offsets for what he can't change, and innovative ideas on completely new products that will reduce impact and improve presentation blew me away when I went to Atlanta to visit him just a few weeks ago. He is new to this whole green thing and he couldn't be more excited to learn, which truly makes me excited that with the right information, other people will be equally enthusiastic about making some changes.

Here is an excerpt from his website about his changes including his company policy at the end:

Reusable polymer stamps with soy-based inks are taking the place of paper address and logo stickers with adhesive backing. Recycled flats are taking the place of photo boxes. Recycled cardboard boxes take the place of new ones, and we are using the boxes shipped to us (product boxes, photo order boxes, personal purchases) for outgoing packages whenever possible. Packing materials look a LOT different now - we are re-using every plastic bag, piece of kraft paper, peanut, bubble wrap, and shredded office paper we can to fill outgoing boxes.

After all - recycling is good, but re-using is better!

And that is just the beginning, Patrick has been making an impact for years with his Flashes of Hope project. This is truly touching, this organization comes in to hospitals and photographs children that are fighting cancer and other life threatening diseases. This is a beautiful demonstration of the small amount of effort it takes to make an impact. Check it out, there are volunteer opportunities in many cities.

Patrick loves the fisheye and he said that was one of his signature looks, he uses it well. Check out his blog for more on Patrick!

Stay tuned to see what I am up too :)