Living in Print

As a photographer one of the things that I spend a lot of time doing is getting images ready for printing. I know that there are a lot of photographers out there who just give a CD of the images and move on, but I prefer giving my clients prints. Technology changes, but being able to hold a printed image will always be better than anything technology can bring our way.  Think of the difference between holding a CD in your hand and an original Ansel Adams in your hand, which would you prefer? Of course, the Ansel Adams print!

I started working on my family tree many years ago and one of the most incredible things about the entire process was the accumulation of family photos that I started. For Christmas I put together albums of the images for my great-aunts. One of my great-aunts called me and was in tears after receiving it. She told me that her house had burned to the ground in the 1950’s and she had lost all of her photographs. Her sisters and brothers gave her some copies, but back then printing images was a luxury that most people couldn’t afford. There were images in those albums that she had not seen since that time. There were some she had never seen before. 
There is a value to holding a photograph in your hand. It’s something that you look at with your eyes, but you can feel that moment. Whether it’s a portrait, art print, or just a snapshot holding it in your hand is to be able to travel in time and be in the moment. 

I am so in love with Nations Photo Lab for my prints. I can not tell you enough how amazing their service and quality is for prints. I recently ordered some 16×24 size prints from them and couldn’t stop looking at how spot-on they were with the colors. I have spent so much time tweaking my images for color with other labs and I have not had to do that once for any of my orders from NPL. I have now ordered so many different sizes from them and each time I am just blown away by how great the images look. Even the small wallet images look great! (Although I love the BIG prints myself!)

I want people to know that feeling of holding their printed image. I want them to be able to give those images to their children and to all the generations that follow. I may not compare to Ansel Adams, but I know the true value of a beautiful printed image and so do my clients. There is nothing like standing back and seeing your work printed and ready to grace the walls of a home, a gallery, or a business. If you are currently only giving CDs to your clients, I urge you to start thinking about printing those images. I am so thankful for each one of the old photographs I received and that I was able to share with my great-aunts. 
Thank you so much to everyone at NPL for all the work you do and for giving photographers such beautiful, quality prints for their clients. 

These people live again in print as intensely as when their images were captured on old dry plates of sixty years ago… I am walking in their alleys, standing in their rooms and sheds and workshops, looking in and out of their windows. Any they in turn seem to be aware of me. ~Ansel Adams

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Wine Tasting {Parker’s Table}

I recently realized that I never posted the images from the wine tasting at Parker’s Table! Parker’s is an awesome shop here in St. Louis. Not only do they have a great selection of wine and beer, but cheese as well. They won’t hire me to work at their cheese counter because there will be zero profits in that area! They get their cheese from Baetje Farms, which is right here in Missouri!

If you are in the St. Louis area, head over to Parker’s and check out their awesome stuff! They are located at 7118 Oakland Ave. St. Louis, Mo 63117

Why You Should Never Date a Clown

Before speed dating and eHarmony you had to rely on meeting men in person, through friends, or having someone set you up.

I went on a blind date once. And only once. I never, ever recommend that anyone go on a blind date because of my experience.

My mom and one of her friends had this great idea to fix me up with one of her friends husband’s friends. Follow that?

They told me what a nice guy he was. Successful. Great guy. Sounded good.

He called me.We talked for a long time on the phone. Wow. He seemed really  nice. He was a good listener. We talked about me and we talked about him. We talked about everything.

I should have left it at that.

We decided to go to dinner and a movie.

Date night rolled around and I got all dressed up. I looked really hot for my date.

I was excited.

And then he showed up.

Suddenly my excitement was all gone.

‘Cause I was face to face with….

This had to be a mistake.
THIS was not my date.
Oh, holy hellz, NOOOOOOOOOOOO…it WAS my date.
I excused myself for a minute to get myself together because I immediately wanted to call it off. But I thought…”I have to make the most of this. What if he is the sweetest guy in the world? Remember that long phone call??? It was nice. Give this a chance….”
I composed myself.
(And secretly hoped that he wasn’t wearing a flower that squirted water or something.)
We left the house and were heading out to dinner.
(Or were we going to the movie first? I don’t remember. But I don’t guess that it matters once you hear the rest of the story.)
Anyhoodle…

We were talking in the car for about five minutes and he says “Why are you wearing those shoes?”

I responded,  “Because they don’t let people with bare feet come into places where they serve food….” (Funny and a bit sarcastic, my traditional style.)

Then he says “No, those just aren’t appropriate shoes for our date and….. I don’t like them.”

Oh no, Bozo the Clown, you did NOT just insult my shoes.
And for the record they were some kick ass shoes.
I am guessing he didn’t like my tasteful shoes because his shoes looked like this…
(Maybe I am exaggerating on that one…)
Then he said, “Oh well…I guess you’ll do.”
I looked at him and said “Excuse me……. I’ll do what?”
He looked at me and said “Oh, I mean, I guess you’ll do… as a girlfriend.”
What? That was a backhanded compliment, wasn’t it?
Oh Bozo…you have messed with the wrong girl….
It took every once of strength I had not to go over and strangle Bozo the Clown with that long handkerchief that I know was hanging out in his pocket.
And then I lost it…
I said something like …
“Listen, I will not ‘do‘ and I won’t settle. And if I was it would most definitely not be for someone like you. Have you looked in a mirror lately? As for my shoes, they are fabulous, but how would you know?  I am not your girlfriend and at this point I don’t even want to be your date. You need to turn this car around and take me home.”
Bozo said “I think you are being too emotional. Let’s just go see the movie and you can use that time to calm down. Women sometimes get too emotional.”
I went off on Bozo again.
Emotional? No. Angry? Oh yeah.
Ready to kill a clown? Most definitely.
Thinking about those little clown cars and could I effectively hide a body in one? Uh huh!
I told him he could take me home or he could drop me off somewhere and I would call a friend. He knew my mom and her friend would be angry if he just dropped me off somewhere, so he took me home.
When I got out of the car, he said,  “Can I call you again?”
He thought this went well…..
Seriously?????
Do they not teach how to identify angry people in clown college?
I said “Nooooooo, you can’t ever call me again. You need to lose my number. You need to forget ever calling me for anything again. Don’t contact me at all. This is not going to work. At all.”
The next day my mom’s friend called me and asked for my side of the date. I told her. She was horrified.
He had called her and said “I am not sure it went well. I asked her about her shoes and she got mad.”

He thought nothing of the way he talked to me. He thought he was just so wonderful that he could be rude and that any girl would just be delighted just to be in his presence. He really thought he was that great. And he soooo wasn’t.

Just think, if I didn’t have anger management issues and couldn’t stand up for myself that.this could have been me…………
And this could have been my kids…
Ahhhhh……..If only I didn’t have such great taste in shoes and clothes…
(There is a reason that when you insult someone you can call them “ass clown”. That phrase might have very well been coined by women who actually went on blind dates with this guy. I’m just sayin’…I think I know where the phrase originated.)

I did Google to try to find a pic of the shoes I had on that night….these look very similar. And they still kick ass….
But what do clowns know about fashionable shoes???
This is the very reason when people say “My friend wants to set me up on a blind date, what do you think?” that I always reply with “Well, how do you feel about your kids attending clown college? If you are okay with that…then go for it. If not, tell your friend that if Bozo is so great that SHE should go out with him.”

Vacation Paradise

Could you imagine waking up every morning to this? 
Spending your afternoon sitting in the sand…watching the seagulls and the boats.

An afternoon stroll out by the boat dock. 
Beautiful sea oats to look at and admire.

Even the pathway to the beach is a piece of beautiful art.

And then waking up the next morning and starting all over again.
Living at the beach would be wonderful. My hair would be frizzy and my skin would always have that salty feel to it, but it would totally be worth it to look at this every single day!