The BFF Contest is back!

Be sure to contact me via email, phone, text, Facebook message any way you can!  This rescue is so great for our city, they help the dogs that are without a home…whether their owner can no longer take care of them, or a dog might be pulled from a shelter.  All dogs are in foster care, so they are settled and many times are being trained as they are in foster care.

This is a super opportunity to get your beloved pets photographed so that they can stay safe in your memory forever!  Thank you!

BFF contest flyer color 2019

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Be brave enough to take this flight!

I don’t mind flying, really.  Sometime early into my adulthood, I discovered that I had all of a sudden developed a fear of heights.  Fast forward years later, our family was vacationing in Branson.  The kids wanted to go ziplining, and they wanted Mom to go too!  I said I would try but might chicken out!

I kept pushing and pushing myself, I climbed up an outdoor spiral staircase!  Eek!  I had my first flight…so far so good.  Each new flight was scary, but I kept at it.  Then came the rope bridge….oh my…..

All of a sudden, the trip was over, I was on the ground.  I was so proud of myself…it had been amazing to soar as only a bird can and feel the air rushing past!

I felt then that I could do anything, and at that moment made the decision to go ahead with my dream of opening a studio location again after 17 years…Also to specialize in boudoir photography at that location.

My son gave me this plaque to always remind me of our flight, and triumph.  I want to help others to soar, and take the risk of trying something scary, but oh so well worth it!  That is what I see the women who have a boudoir session come to realize.  Through the process, they can do something that is maybe a stretch out of their comfort zone, but afterwards the confidence emerges!  So awesome to see!IMAG1247

What is your definition of success?

Happy New Year!  Whew, I am maybe a tad late here on the 14th day of 2019….I had a fantastic fall and Christmas season, completing my first 6 months in the new studio.  On December 28th, my family and oh some 150 other people took off in Arrow buses for Florida!  We were part of the amazing Outback Bowl competition that Topeka West Charger Band participated in.  Tiring, but amazing!

My definition of success has changed over the years.  As a 20-something, I looked up to older photographers who seemed to always be busy.  That was success, having sessions booked every day of the week.  Busy was success!  It got muddy in my 30’s, I became a mom, worked less, and worried more.  How could I be a success, and not be working the business very much?

Coming full circle now – I have a studio location again after 18 years working from the house.  I had a fantastic first 6 months, and I do not work every day of the week.  Am I successful?  YOU BET!  To me, success is what you make it.  It isn’t a sales figure, or how full time you are, or how many sessions you do a year.  It is how I feel…I have created a good business in a new location, there is a buzz about my boudoir business, and I FEEL GOOD!!!  I am successful!

Here’s to all those out there struggling with identity in business…I wish you success.  Look deep and figure out what success is to you.  Then go for it!

In Tribute

I debated with this title, I didn’t want to sound too much like Katniss Whatshername from those movies….you know the ones….No I wasn’t a fan.

I am writing this in tribute to my good friend, Cheri Smith.  We had talked for years about photographing Katie, her daughter – and Cheri.   We accomplished their session this summer!

Cheri’s is a selfless unwavering love…she is beyond gentle, caring and nurturing with Katie.  Cheri is an awesome professional photographer who has done some amazing work, but Katie comes first always.  To say Cheri is selfless is an understatement…she made the decision to keep her business to a minimum in order to care for Katie, and in turn gave up making it what I am sure would have been a very busy thriving portrait studio.

I am inspired by Cheri when I see her with Katie, and also by the incredible ways she works to make Katie’s life as full as possible.  I cannot imagine giving so much of yourself every minute of every day…..I am too used to putting myself first these days.  I will always be a mom, but taking care of our 20  and almost 16 year olds just doesn’t take up much time anymore.  It is especially interesting to think of Cheri and her caring, while I am gaining more and more personally as I expand my business to make myself happy.  We each must make our own way in the world, and face our challenges in whatever way we see fit.

Here’s to 3 amazing women – Cheri, Katie and me!  While our paths in life vary greatly, we’re all amazing in our own ways and we give love freely to those around us and make the best of our lives.

How do you do it???

 

I love animals of all kinds…that should be evident if you look at my facebook pages, or know me personally.  That love hopefully is evident also when you look at my pet portraits.

I was asked today, “How do you do it – photograph all those pets at Helping Hands shelter and Saving death row dogs rescue here in Topeka?”  I would want to take every one of them home with me!

I had to think a bit, but I guess I have a natural distance that I keep, in order to not fall in love!  After all, I do need to keep back to use the camera, but it is oh-so-hard when you see those sweet faces!  Through no fault of their own, they are in an  unfamiliar place maybe thinking that life is over as they know it.

I too have the deepest respect for pet  foster parents anywhere.  You generally know that you won’t be keeping that pet forever, but love them immediately.  I couldn’t do it, no way!  Every volunteer is an essential part of a shelter or rescue, and it couldn’t run without them!

So….I do what I do to help get those furkids adopted.  I try to keep a bit of a distance from them, yet make the best portrait of them possible.  You…you can go in and see those sweet faces and take one or two home with you!

Clear the Shelters is this Saturday!  Go and visit Helping Hands Humane Society and see all the great pets there just ready for you to take them home!

Carol

And they called it Puppy Love…

Is anyone else here a Donny Osmond fan from a loooonnnnnnggggg way back?  His was my first LP.  Yes, I am that old!

Now to the subject of this post!  This is Cooper, aka Cooperbeans, Bean, Cooperpooper…..He refuses to answer to that last one!

Cooper is a lab mix, we got him at Midwest Animal ResQ in Raytown, Missouri.  He is almost 10 weeks old now.  We had been without a dog since November, when poor Molly passed away.  It was time.

Please remember to watch your own precious pets when they are outside – many dogs and cats go missing in what many fear are nasty people stealing them to be used as bait for dog fighting rings in this area.  All it takes is one time, and they could be gone forever!

To close, hug and kiss your furkids today, and as always, Adopt – Don’t Shop!!!

Carol

 

No Regrets

I’ve just finished up a session tonight.  It was a special one, a lady and her beloved dog.  This dog doesn’t have a lot of time left here on Earth, and we captured their relationship for his human to remember forever.

I am so pleased that we were able to get the session done, since I’ve had a few that I didn’t get done before…well, you know.  It is always one of my biggest regrets, hearing “I always wanted to put Jimmy in our family photos… We just kept waiting until next year.

There are no guarantees, don’t wait for next year…make sure you include your pet in your family portraits, have him or her photographed alone as a puppy and an adult.  By all means, take a lot of snapshots!  I hear time and again, that portraits of loved ones who are gone are the most treasured possessions.

Do your best to have no regrets.  Keep those memories forever!

Carol

The new joint!

Here, have a look!  This is the building where my new studio is, and look at those woods right next to my door.  I am just getting my stuff moved in, but each time I am there is more and more exciting!  I will work the same in many ways…providing quality images of Maternity, Boudoir, High school Seniors, Families and Pets.  I will change things up as well…offering mini sessions with themes – for Pets and Kids!  I will be opening up my Shoot For The Moon photography classes again!

I really hope to see you one of these days!  Take care and have a good, safe 4th of July!

 

Carol

 

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Big News!!!

Well….I’m taking a deep breath here now…. I have decided to lease a studio location again after 17 years of working from my home!!!  This has been such a journey!  The only career I’ve ever had was as a photographer.  I worked for many years before marriage, and then along came our first born, Tristan.  I planned to be a working mom, but when T was 2…I worked more than I saw my precious son.  I was in tears most days, missing him.  My husband and I discussed…and we decided that I would close my storefront location and work from home.  This arrangement has had it’s ups and downs, so fast forward 17 years.

Our sons are almost 20 and 15 1/2….needing me far less than before.  I am doing this move for me, and for them.  I believe that you can take care of your family and take care of yourself as well.

So…to end this, watch for many, many exciting offers and specials!  I plan to be there  by appointment only…but I will always be available by phone, text, email, facebook, Twitter and here of course.  Thanks for following and listening!!!