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Exploring Baja Mexico- Bikes in Wine Country & Deep Sea Fishing

One of my best memories is now from Valle de Guadalupe, the heart of Northern Baja's wine country, and the area that produces 70% of Mexico's wine. The Terra del Valle bnb (the traditional non-air kind with real breakfast and homemade marmalade) where we stayed for a night was nestled beside an expanse of orange groves and adjoining dirt roads with horseback riding next door. Katharine, John and I grabbed the available bikes and went cruising into the countryside to hit up a couple wine tasting from the vineyards within just a few miles of our place. Finn, of course, came too. At first I tried to kindly shove my rescue long-haired jack russell pup into a tote bag but after about 100yards on the bicycle his wiggly bod found itself happily running alongside my bike. I've never seen him so happy to run! And as a proud dog mum I was stoked with how well he could keep up. He was obviously stoked for this boundless freedom of movement that doesn't quite exist inside our studio apartment. With a few shots left on my 35mm manual pentax, I'm so glad I had this camera on my shoulder. The unedited, tactile feeling of these photos, with that slightly grainy vibe, helps take me back to that gritty dirt road, the golden sun, and the cruisy vibes I now associate with mexican wine. It was a perfect day to celebrate KP's 30th trip around the sun. :) 

A must for brunch in this area is La Cocina de Dona Esthela.

Now for the ocean... Patrol the marina near Ensenada and you can find a good deal on a deep sea fishing boat that'll take you into towards the foggy island surrounded with seagulls, dolphins and snapper filled waters. xx

Tactile Film at Red Rocks Canyon, CA

I returned to Red Rocks Canyon State Park in Cantil, CA a couple weekends ago with two amazing girlfriends, Grace De Silva and Lili Bordan. Tucked into the folds of an ancient cliff, we got camera ready in our tent. I shot plenty of digital, but the photos below are all 35mm with medium format in b&w. You might have seen the movie Book Club on the film marquis lately- if you watch it, take a look for Lili with the long dark hair below in one of the roles. Getting into the desert with such strong, talented and beautiful women is such a reminder of to lean into our womanhood and our friendships. XO 

Botanical Engagement Session at the LA Arboretum

Benjamin and Lindsey were wonderful. College sweethearts, these two are now engaged and couldn't be a better match. I met them at the LA Arboretum and it was a perfect location- everything was in full glorious bloom and every pathway had a diversely stunning backdrop. The Ancient Forest and Rose Garden were two of my faves. XO

An Oceanic Maternity Session at Abalone Cove, CA

This session with beautiful momma-to-be Jessica felt part Greek goddess and part mermaid. Of which I couldn't imagine better descriptors for a maternity session. 37 weeks along, she was completely game to hike the steep rocky trail down to Abalone Cove tide pools in Rancho Palos Verdes this week. What an incredible (and beautiful) trooper! "Prince Eric" was along for the ride. 

He is Ernie

Sit down or jump up for a treat and visit director/editor Ernie Gilbert's website, www.iamernie.com. You may have already seen his work! The last video he cut was This is America by Childish Gambino.  A friend since college, it's been awesome to watch his trajectory out here in LA. This was a fun session we shot together at LAC studios in downtown LA. Get after those dreams of yours and make them happen. 1-2-3 jump! XO

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A Glowing Mojave Desert

Red Rocks State Park in Cantil, CA has a mystery vibe of it's own. This martian landscape comes alive as the sun goes down and the desert life opens up to a starry sky. A few of my favorite photos from this trip are those of the Joshua Trees and rockscape aglow at night. I used a 30 second exposure with my camera on a tripod while drawing on the limbs and outlines with a flashlight to capture those surreal images. Awake before dawn (with a stir-crazy Finn!) the Mojave desert was full of that ultra-warm morning light as we started our drive back to LA.

Headshots with Actor Luke Jackson

If you're lucky you can hear Luke Jackson recite Shakespeare, taking you back in time several hundred years. Ideally this will be like my scenario...within a sunny apple orchard in Ojai, CA as you follow along an ancient stone wall. Professionally trained, he's coming onto the acting scene as a Jon Snow meets Lorenzo Medici kind of way. I anticipate seeing his devilishly charming mug in the next period-set production. Or who knows- he can deliver a range of looks so the screen time ahead is wide open. Such a great shoot with this guy. 

Giant Sequoias & Salty Malibu in 120mm

I love the moment where I first see the pictures of a roll of  film that I've had developed... A hinge of fear and excitement- did I expose it by accident? Maybe all the manual settings I guessed at were off and everything will be dark and fuzzy... or maybe they are properly exposed and beautiful! Whatever photos that *do* turn out from a roll film that only fits 12 pictures are always so special. Faces and places, forever etched into a tangible memory- it's magical. Below is a mix of other magic- the biggest tree in the world- the great sequoia that is General Sherman. A double exposure of my boyfriend Robbie looking up at that tree... I think this photo helps capture a sense of the scale and wonder it evokes in person. A sweet family portrait with actress Caroline Macey. And my best girl Leah Shapiro, an Asheville rockstar, sunning/not sunning her porcelain skin at Point Dume in Malibu, CA on a trip this past February. And a few takes of the powerful & lazy coastline on that coastal stretch. xo

Studio Session w/ Nina

Most of my images are taken in natural sunlight but I switched it up last week for a studio session with Nina, aka Ms Ross. We met in downtown LA and captured these pix below. Most of the shots used strobes with soft boxes, however the last two shots against the deep blue background were all-natural window light.  #naturaldiffusion!  She was so fun to work with- I love how she could turn on the attitude in a split second. xo Nina! 

A Wednesday Morning Wedding

So often a wedding becomes the production of something beyond the bride or groom's control. And so this young couple decided that what they really wanted was a ceremony for just the two of them. And so, despite a big wedding in the works for 2019, Anissa and her fiancé decided to get married the following Wednesday morning. Her parents went to work, her fiancé enrolled in classes before coming over, and she laid out all her makeup brushes. These photos capture the moments before a ceremony that was just for them. They will still have a big wedding next year- but no stress- this couple has already said I Do!  I love the momentum of this love. 

A Sunset Engagement Shoot at Griffith Observatory

Meet Danielle & Tyler! The sweetest couple drove up to LA from San Diego for the weekend and I got the chance to meet them for this beautiful 2 hour session at Griffith Observatory. It was cold (for LA!), windy and oh-so-crowded that evening but that didn't matter- they were total champions in the model department and carried such a beautiful energy together as a couple. XO

Boho Wedding Feature: From Brooklyn To Spain

Excited to see Kate & Camden's beautiful wedding featured internationally on the Boho Weddings & Events blog! My first layout! A UK blog for the boho lux bride. Thank you Kelly at Boho for such a lovely layout, to event planner Mery Liccardi for the submission and to my friend and goddess of a bride Kate Jenkins. Her responses make the article a great read to compliment her incredible vision of a wedding. xo!

A Wadmalaw Island Oyster Roast & NYE

Celebrating the close of one year and the beginning of another with a muddy oyster harvest and roast on NYE day. Wadmalaw Island remains a magical place for gathering friends (thanks to bff Katharine and her fam) together over the last 5 years. It's peaceful yet dynamic with the changing landscape of the low and high tides and some of the most beautiful sunsets to be seen. I love photographing out here. The crew this year was mostly a reunion of college friends from UNC Chapel Hill who have since scattered across the US and Europe. It was such a great reset to be around so much mud, water, fire and friendship to open up the new year.  Happy 2018 everyone! 

A Sweet Family Photo Session at The GettY

Meet Pamela, an all star mom with 3 beautiful children and a stand-up husband in tow. In our one-hour session at The Getty Museum last weekend we achieved some great shots... no small feat for a family of 5! I was duly impressed with the handle these parents had on their cute kiddos as well as with their super fun & sweet personalities. 

Sebastian

Meet Sebastian, born to Amanda & Nick, he was 3 weeks full of wonder for our session. And so was his beautiful momma! One of my favorite parts from the day was watching their trio of dogs follow Amanda everywhere we she went in her home... "helping" :)