Monthly Archives: February 2008

Superhero Photo Challenge will be up on Saturday

Laura, texturized, Canon Digital Rebel Xti

Thank you so much for all of your wishes! Ben is feeling so much better and as of today was hiding from me and making me chase him. A good sign! We will be out of town for the rest of the week visiting family, but check in on Shutter Sisters this weekend for my new Superhero Photo Challenge. I’ll give you a hint: it has to do with all the textures I’ve been playing with. Hope to see you over there!

hot hot hot

Ben, Berkeley, CA, 14 months, Canon Digital Rebel Xti

Dear Ben,

It was a doozie of a day I tell ya. You were flushed with fever all weekend, all hot and subdued. We called you the sub-dude for kicks. It was a little scary, particularly when I was holding you on my hip, spooning some yogurt into your mouth and suddenly you fell back in my arms and went all crazy eyes and non-responsive for several seconds. A febrile seizure is what the doctor said it was. So scary for me and dada.

And then today you were even hotter.. and acting very strange and spacey and like a limp little doll in my arms. You had another convulsion, one that lasted several very long seconds and then you were back and spaced out again. By this time I was crying and hyperventilating and called 911. I was so scared… but you were okay, very hot but okay. We spent the rest of the day trying to cool you off.


You are in bed right now. It is nighttime and I am hoping that your fever breaks soon. It occurs to me as I write this that I am one of many moms praying right now, a powerful chorus of us, all praying for healing to come. It must be quite a thing to behold, to hear such a sound, in the place where prayers are heard.

The great news is that you are walking like such a champ! and have been perfecting your technique over the last month. You started with the drunken sailor method (very charming I may add) and have slowly gotten more steady and less waddly. You still have a very wide-legged stance, which I think is very smart since it gives you a nice solid foundation. You are an official toddler now. You toddle wherever you go.

We also made our first breakthrough in the chewing department recently. I brought home a roasted chicken from the grocery store and you stared at it with huge, disbelieving eyes. If eyes could salivate, yours surely would have been. The babysitter and I commented on how sad it was; you so clearly wanted to eat that chicken but there was no way you’d be able to chew such a thing. Then it hit me. I took a bite and chewed it up myself, then put it in your mouth. You ate it effortlessly. You were so excited that we did this many more times until you had eaten a good portion of the chicken and your belly was ginormous. You were practically biting my fingers to get to it. My little bird!

Since then, you have been chewing crackers, those puffy cereal things and the occasional cut up piece of fruit. This is serious progress. It will be so nice to not have to feed you from a jar all the time.

You are also collecting a number of words you like to say:
Uh oh.
Wow… (say it like Jeff Spicoli) This comes out when we put on the itunes visualizer.
Wow wow (for dog)
mama (for food)
No no no. (with head shaking back and forth)
no no no

You also have a couple of signs under your belt. You are starting to get the sign for “more” and then you’ve made up a few of your own. When you want to hear your Music Together cd, you point at the stereo and flap your arms up and down. Not officially an ASL sign but totally works. I understand you little dude.

And after waving my hand at the stove and saying, “Hot hot hot!” several times, you started signing hot for everything I tell you not to touch. The toilet? Hot. The diaper pail? Hot. The garbage? Hot hot hot. It’s going to be a little confusing when you discover that the toilet and the computer keyboard aren’t actually hot, but whatever, you are so excited to tell me about all the things you’re not allowed to touch! It is so sweet Ben.

I find myself getting teary as I write this.

I think today took more out of me than I thought… now that you are sound asleep I can let go a bit, let the floodgates open and feel the tears come through.

My beautiful boy. You were so hot hot hot today. I will look it up, but I’m not sure there is a sign that can express how much I love you. It might end up looking more like an interpretive dance.

Hope Revolution

Ben, H&M dressing room, SF, Canon Digital Rebel Xti

I am so inspired by this idea of the Hope revolution! This is right up your alley folks…

And I discovered that lots of you didn’t see the what when and where on the Squam site! Here you go…

Squam Art Workshops

Jen, my lovely friend and assistant for the workshop, Canon Digital Rebel Xti

I am very excited to announce that the Squam Art Workshops info is up! For those of you who haven’t heard, I will be teaching a photography and coaching workshop this September in New Hampshire) The site will be updated with even more info, but I wanted to give you a sneak peek so you can be ready for signup day on March 7th. Wouldn’t it be fun if lots of us were there? This community is so rich and amazing… I am envisioning a big superhero circle of women, being able to all meet and connect and be inspired. It will be like summer camp!

The above photo is of Jen Gray who will be laughing and playing with us all week. She will be my assistant/co-facilitator and total superhero. You will love getting to know Jen if you don’t already!

walkin video

into the sunshine

Ben in the sunshine, Canon Digital Rebel Xti

My new Shutter Sisters photo challenge is up!

romance and beauty

Laura and Emery, Tiburon, CA, Canon Digital Rebel Xti

Another shot from my portrait session last week… I love how romantic this one is.

At a yoga class last night, the teacher was talking about beauty. She talked about those people that might not be magazine quality gorgeous but they carry themselves with such confidence and aliveness and joy that they totally spill over with beauty… I love photographing someone and finding this in them. I love talking with them as I shoot, telling them how beautiful they look, and seeing them relax and unfold before the lens. It is amazing to literally see someone’s face transform as the session goes on.

The last photos I posted are not necessarily great examples of this because these people actually were magazine quality gorgeous, but the process was still the same. At the beginning of the shoot was one face: young, fresh, pretty… and the last shots revealed a more womanly beauty, of a woman totally inhabiting her body. It’s such an honor to witness others in such an intimate way.

Let’s all try to look at ourselves with the kindest of eyes today. When we see the best in people, they unfold before us in the most magical ways.

beautiful girl

Laura, Tiburon, CA, Canon Digital Rebel Xti

I still love shooting those bellies.

It was a part of my healing process when I was going through infertility. At the toughest of times, when I was the most depressed and without hope, seeing other pregnant women (even, or maybe especially, my friends) was incredibly painful. What’s more is the shame that comes from having those feelings about people you love. It all felt so ugly and not me and so terribly human all at the same time.

But when I was photographing these women it was all different. Through my lens I could celebrate with them, appreciate their curves, see their beauty and be inspired. By doing something I loved, by making art, I was in my power… and I had a chance to be how I actually wanted to be in the world: Celebrating their joy with them and knowing my time would come.

We all know that art has the power to heal. I was reminded of that recently… Maybe we should all lift ourselves up this week by making some art. Doesn’t have to be fancy.

trusting my eye

my eye, photo by Boho Denise, Santa Monica, CA, Canon Digital Rebel Xti

I’m off to do a maternity photo shoot in a couple of hours and as with all creative acts, there is that fluttery butterfly feeling beforehand, that wondering if you’re going to pull it off this time… that blank canvas feeling. I’m grateful for the unexpected warmth and sunshine today and the fact that I am going to a pretty place called Tiburon.

I wanted to share some of the places I go to get inspired before shoots like this, filling my head with pretty light, angles, composition and images…It helps me every time.

Jesh de Rox
Amanda Keeys
Boho Photo
Maile from Relish Portrait Studio
Anna Kuperberg

And at the end of all this… I have to simply trust my eye.

Valentine’s Day treats

Bowie, San Francisco, CA, from my Speesees photoshoot, Canon Digital Rebel Xti

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. I know this only because I have a jewelry business and it is my job to know these things and get the ladies their treats on time. Otherwise, these days it’s hard to remember much of anything.

I always feel a little funny recommending my own work for gifts, but I’ll just say it loud and proud: if you have always wanted a superhero necklace (or more juicy colors to add to your collection) I encourage you to gift yourself this Valentine’s Day or send your sweetie my way!

I am also a fan of handmade gifts of love and sweet romantic gestures that are not about dollars spent.

Some ideas:
Shutterfly book filled with photos that make you smile.
Small Kolo book with tiny notes written inside.
Wooden letters that spell out I LOVE YOU or YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL…
Magic rocks with custom messages on them from the totally magical Dancing Mermaid.

Perhaps you can add some of your favorite creative gifts to this list? What is the most romantic gift you have ever given or received? If you do not have a valentine this year, what kind thing can you do for yourself or a dear friend?