This last trip to New York was great.  I went out for the same private school that I've shot for twice before.  I'm so glad they have been pleased with my work and asked me back.  This time I felt like I was leaving again too soon and was homesick the day I left but but once I started working, I felt better and ended up really enjoying myself.

This shoot was different from the last two.  The last two were what I would describe as 3 day long weddings -- on crack.  It was so much shooting and lugging of gear and the volume of images was intense.  This shoot included two to three staged scenarios a day where the creative director had an image in mind for an ad and we tried to get it.  They had chosen specific students to shoot in a specific setting.  This was great for me since I had the attention of the students whereas before I was trying to capture them doing their normal thing. So the pressure was more intense since I had to create an image to match the one in the mind of the creative director but the workload was lighter.  I was also nursing a bad cold last time.  Having my normal energy level and more daylight made for a better trip.

I really like the two women I spent time with on the shoot. One is a contracted creative director and in charge of the advertising campaign for the school and the other works at the school.  We had fun spending time together and one day ate at this great street down by wall street that is lined with restaurants and there are benches for eating all in the street.  I have a few pictures below.

As always I had a great time hanging out with Travis and Sara and their kids. I was able to join in on the Mother's Day celebration at their house which was very delicious. I also had my usual sleep habits of staying up at night on Colorado time but getting up in the morning on New York time.  By the time I had to go home, I was way under slept and slept the whole plane ride from New York to Salt Lake. I also enjoyed some relaxed eating habits and had a lunch of just frozen yogurt at the Salt Lake airport.

So far we have put out one of the ads and I had to do a lot of work on the one image.  I'm not sure what  is ahead as far as work load goes.  They paid me for 12 hrs of post processing work and I think we are about 8hrs after just one image.  I knew this image would be more complicated because it was a planned composite of two images.  There was a hired retoucher involved in the process.  After we successfully go the two images combined, they kept wanting to remove things from the image which takes a lot of time to make it look good.  I had to put in some serious photoshop time.

This whole experience has been really great.  I'm so glad Case connected me to this school and helped me get this chance to really stretch myself and learn a lot.  I took more personal pictures than usual on this  trip since I had some free time and wasn't so burnt out.  Here are some below.  They are a mixture of my iphone and my Diana. It was really only sunny one day and the Diana needs sun.   I was feeling really creative on this trip. It was wonderful!  Like usual, I was so happy to get home to my family and I'm so glad my mom came out to help take care of the kids. They have not stopped talking about their adventures and I keep finding drawers and cabinets that my mom organized for me while I was gone.

I also made a video with clips from my iphone.  Here is a link to it.

I came home to some great things coming into bloom.  I've officially given our front beds over to the columbine.  I just can't control them. I'd like to see more variety and color, but the columbine rule the space. Not much happening in the vegetable garden yet. I did pick and eat several strawberries. I love how they are so soft and warm from the sun.

I didn't get a chance to document my garden this week but Travis and Sara's garden is so gorgeous, I just had to do a photo walkthrough when I got back this evening.

This east coast is something else.  All the plants are different.  It's all rainy and humid.  I have so many memories of Michigan and Massachusetts just smelling the plants and feeling the humidity.  This garden is amazing. There are about 200 peonies ready to bloom. If I lived here I'd be cutting them and bringing them inside and taking pictures of them constantly.  I had a peony bush once but it didn't take. I know they can grow in Colorado so I might have to try again. If you haven't seen the inside of Travis and Sara's house, you can see it here.   I'm really taking a liking to Hotel Stratford.

Mother's Day

I'm in New York today for a thee day photo job that starts tomorrow. This morning I woke up at 4:30am to Hank asleep between Willie and me.  He insists on wearing footed fleece pajamas, even now that it's warming up.  I think he must have been hot since he had unzipped them down to his belly button.  He looked like he was wearing a little elvis jumpsuit.  His hair was freshly buzzed yesterday so I just laid next to him for a few minutes and felt his soft hair against my face while he slept.  I kissed Willie goodbye and snuck in and gave Wyatt a kiss and left to the airport.  I didn't want to leave.  I wish I was home right now.

Being a mother has changed me in ways I never thought possible.  I didn't know I would love my children like I do. I didn't even know it was possible.  Being a mother has helped me become more selfless, to put other people first.  It has helped me see the big picture and to understand that what I say and do around my children now can make a difference in their life.  Something so wonderful about motherhood is that my children love me back.

Once when I had been gone for a few days, I went to pick up Wyatt from school.  He saw me drive up and as soon as he saw me he lit up and started waving.  He was so happy to see me.  He held my hand has we walked back to the car and said over and over how happy he was that I was home.

I'm always a little baffled when people talk about how hard being a mother is.  I think I can remember hard times when I was struggling with depression and my kids were babies, but right now, it just seems like the happiest time in my life.  I have Willie who is an equal parent with me.  We love our children beyond belief.  They love us.  They ask to snuggle with us.  They squeal when we get home.  They tell us they love us.  They are so curious and excited about everything.  They laugh and play and dress up.  They want me to hold them when they are hurt.

Nothing has affected me like becoming a mother and nothing ever seems as important.

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