Browsing Tag

making things happen


Hello 2012


Happy 2012!

The new year is finally here and it’s time to make things happen. This is the first time in a long while that I have felt renewed and refreshed and ready for the new year. I don’t know what it is about this time, but I can already feel that 2012 is going to be different.

To kick off 2012 in a big way, I’ll be blogging every day in January. I recently completed 40 days straight of writing on and have recommitted to their 30 Day Challenge. In tandem with that challenge, I decided I want to make it happen on the blog, too. It may just be a few photos, an inspirational quote, or even just the thoughts of the day, but I commit myself to write. Each day.

I want to look back at 2012 and tangibly see that I accomplished something.

And for January, it’s blogging. Usually, I’m motivated, stoked and totally gung-ho on a new project. I’ll usually last for at least a week. But by two weeks in, I feel myself start to peter out. I start to lose steam. And then, as soon as a day is skipped, I allow myself to quit. I let myself throw in the proverbial towel.

But this year is going to be different. I don’t want to overcommit myself to things I know that I will allow myself to fail at. I want to accomplish great things in 2012. And I’m going to start with blogging. I’ve been fairly good at blogging about three times a week for the last year. However, I feel like my blog has lost some soul. Like it has lost a part of me. And I think it’s because I’ve been afraid to be 100% me on my blog. Sometimes I’ll write a sentence and then think about how someone might take it. Would they disagree? Would they be offended? So instead of allowing myself a 100% authentic post, I dialed it down a notch. To be safe. To be comfortable.

Well, in 2012, I don’t want to be safe. I don’t want to be comfortable. I don’t want to be complacent.

And I want to be myself. Whether or not people like me. Whether or not anyone reads what I write. Because in the end, I’ll have the opportunity to look back at where I was at the beginning of 2012 and reflect on where I have been and where I am going. And if I am 100% honest with myself, not editing myself for the masses, I will have accomplished my goal. I want to be myself. I want to be honest. I want to start over in documenting my adventure as a photographer and get real. I don’t want to pretend or act as if. I just want to be able to remember the authentic journey that I took. The ups. The downs. The ins and outs. The accomplishments along with the failures. If there’s one thing that I want to do for myself, it’s be real. Keep. It. Real.

This is not to say that I’ll be sharing every gory detail of my life. Because that right there? That would be so boring. But I do want to be honest with myself and with my writing. I want to record the events of my life so that I can see how far I have come. Because who I am today, is not the same person that I was yesterday.

I want to make things happen.

Let’s do this! What do you want to make happen in 2012?


WPPI and some joie de vivre…


Tomorrow, I take off for a couple of days to Las Vegas for WPPI, Wedding and Portrait Photographers International, the largest photographer’s convention. Imagine being in the thick of things with 10,000+ other colleagues who love the same thing as you, photography! Last year was my first time to go and I learned a lot of things which have helped me prepare better for this year.

  • Wear comfortable shoes. Seriously. The MGM Grand is ginormous. I believe my Nike+ pedometer recorded that it was about 1/2 mile from the hotel rooms down to the conference center, one way. If you don’t wear comfortable shoes, you may want to hack off your feet, just sayin’.
  • Bring water. Go to Walgreens or 7/11 and stock up on water. The desert is dry and the casinos are smoky. I actually learned this the first time I went to Vegas (when Cent proposed!), and you probably don’t want to pay $8 for minibar bottle water. I wouldn’t.
  • Look at the speaker schedule ahead of time. You won’t be able to do everything, so pick out the speakers you absolutely must see and a couple of backups, in the event that there’s no room to sit. It happens. So if you’re going to a really popular presentation, get there early!
  • Make a list of gear that you want to see. Figure out what your budget is beforehand, and stick to it. The tradeshow is HUGE and the deals are AWESOME, so it’s easy to buckle under the temptation to buy, buy buy! But if you have a plan for what you can buy, you’ll leave Vegas with more money in your pocket.
  • Bring cash with you. What I mean is, the casinos have ATMs, but as I learned last year, it’s a $200 minimum withdrawal. Plus the “convenience” fee. So I advise withdrawing cash at home and bringing that…if you’re rolling with cash that is. Of course, you probably don’t want to advertise that you’re packing a couple hundred or thousand (whatever the case may be…)
  • Bring a point & shoot. If you’re going to any of the parties, (and you should be!) you probably don’t want to be lugging around your big camera…because it’s not exactly pocket sized. But you’ll want memories with all your new friends! So bring a P&S.
  • If you have a SmartPhone, start using Twitter. There are a bunch of companies doing giveaways and the info is being given out on Twitter. Last year, I didn’t have my iPhone yet, so I got mobile updates from friends and from the contests…and I’d have 18349251 text messages a day. It was hard to keep up! Go ahead, start tweeting. For more information about Twitter and how to tweet, check out this post.
  • Don’t be afraid to say hello. Like I mentioned, you’ll be surrounded by people who love the same thing you do! So say hello to people in presentations, in the tradeshow, and in line at Starbucks. Since I didn’t have an iPhone last year, I asked a complete stranger if I could borrow her phone to quickly check my email.

Learn hard. Play hard. Make friends. Share stories.

Oh, and an announcement!

Since going to the Making Things Happen Intensive back in January, I started a new blog. I’d love if you would check it out and tell me what you think. I’ve kept the project under wraps, but I figured that (and with encouragement from Lara Casey) this would be a good time to unveil it to the general public! Its content is on a different wavelength from this one, so it’s totally worth a look. Go ahead. Do it. Please?

Without further ado, I present, Project: Joie de Vivre!

Project Joie de Vivre

Are you going to be in Vegas? I’d love to meet up with you!

Sunday: Arrival and AIRHORNS & LASERS party!
Possibly getting up early for the 8am platform
10am-1pm: Tradeshow
4pm-5:30pm: Fast Track Shoot Out
6:30pm-8:30pm: Jasmine Star Platform
8:30pm-whenever: hanging out with new friends!
Tuesday: Cent’s birthday!
12pm-3pm: Tradeshow floor
3:30pm-5:30pm: Dane Sanders, Mary & Justin Marantz, Elizabeth Messina platforms (still undecided!)
10pm: [b] school party & Pictage Party (but not at the same time)
10am-12pm: Tradeshow floor
2:30-4:30pm: Amber Holritz platform, Melanie Nashan platform (possibly)
1pm-4pm: Photog Shootout
6pm-whenever: hang out with new friends!
9am-11am: Photographers Ignite Presentation
3pm: Fly home!

Plans are subject to change, but say hello!



Dreaming Out Loud


It was meant to happen. I don’t know why. But it was meant to happen.

Never did I think in a million years, or even just a year ago, that I would be sitting in a room with a group of people, some friends, some new friends, sharing my passion. I’ve always been a reserved person. Like, I’ve always dreamed big. I’ve always dreamed big on paper. But there’s just something magical about dreaming big OUT LOUD. In front of people who have only known me for a short time. It’s crazy. It’s fun. It’s scary as all get out. But most of all it’s empowering.

The dream starts to materialize. Right then, right there.

Okay, before you start to click away thinking I’ve gone nuts, I have good reason.

Yesterday, I attended Lara Casey’s Making Things Happen Intensive here in Dallas. And it blew my mind. Quite literally. I drove home fired up, invigorated, and my mind flying at a million miles a second. Faster than I could ever run. Like it was even happening in my sleep. My head just wouldn’t shut up. But, it was okay. It was all in the name of good things.

It was so refreshing to be in a room, surrounded by like-minded folks, sharing and being real. Being honest. Being genuine. Being our most authentic selves. Taking transparency to a whole other level. I think it takes a lot of guts to be that honest. To be open to the idea of sharing your heart. To be open to the idea of soaring higher than you could ever, ever imagine. What does that look like?

I am blessed and fortunate to have been a partial scholarship recipient for Making Things Happen. I didn’t even know that I would be attending until Tuesday. I actually didn’t blog or tweet about it because I didn’t want to jinx the opportunity. With the amazing generosity of Lara Casey and her team, we made it happen. I was able to attend. And I’m a firm believer it was because I was genuine and real about it. And it was meant to happen.

I was totally blown away by Lara’s right-side man at the intensive, Jeff Holt. Like holy whoa. Seriously. The moment he began speaking about his experience, it resonated with me. I could see myself in his shoes. And listening to his story, how far he has come, and how far he is going to go is amazing. Knock your socks of amazing.

Now, I feel like the wheels are in motion. Forward motion. I was beginning to feel like they were just spinning, but after this intensive, I’m going to make things happen in 2010.

Have you dreamed your biggest dream? Out loud?

Try it some time. It’ll turn your world upside down.

If you need to re-ignite the fire in what you love, run don’t walk to the nearest Making Things Happen location. You’ll be so happy you did.

Happy Friday!

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