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You may remember my post a few weeks ago about the Kanzashi book that I won in a drawing at bluebirdluxe… I promised to post pictures of the flowers I made, so here you go! Well, so far just one flower. But it was fun, and even though it’s far from perfect, I have to admit I was proud of it and felt a sense of accomplishment that was probably a little exaggerated (:

I’m sure there will be more flowers in my future!



I love when a family session turns into a FAMILY session, complete with cousins and aunts and playing in the lake. Ruby set up this session with her family and her siblings’ families for an early morning at North Avenue Beach. I think we all had a good time (:


I photograph a lot of one year olds and a lot of two year olds. They generally completely ignore me, but move slowly enough that I can keep up. And then I also photograph a lot of five year olds. They generally listen to me (although they may or may not actually be listening), but move slowly enough that I can keep up. Last week, three-year-old Dillon reminded me that between the ages of two and five, kids are super fast, super talkative, and super fun. We literally raced each other all through Millennium Park. He beat me every single time (:


Any session that begins with opening a bottle of wine is guaranteed to be a good one. Add a beautiful couple and a gorgeous home and, well, my job is almost too easy! Bob and Melissa were so happy and comfortable with each other, and I loved how they played word games while I was snapping away. It definitely added a naturalness to their interactions that is sometimes difficult to achieve while someone is taking your picture (: I am definitely adding that little game to my arsenal for future use.


Herbert Hoover believed that “days should be filled with adventure” – I believe that applies to photo sessions as well. When I arrived at the Szmulewitz’s home, the plan was to do the session in their neighborhood. We soon decided to nix that and headed out to Promontory Point for awesome views of the lake and the city. We then wandered south a bit, and found more excellent views of the lake and the Museum of Science and Industry. We climbed back in the car, intending to go to their neighborhood park, when some family friends called from 63rd Street beach to say the fountain was on and the beach was gorgeous. Needless to say, we headed that way immediately. And that’s where I left the Szmulewitzes: playing in the sand and water, still in their “photo session outfits,” and spending a spontaneous afternoon with lovely friends. Spontaneous adventuring… makes the best images, don’t you think?

I never win anything. So imagine my surprise when, the day after I found out I won the Continuum design contest, I got an email from the lovely Elaine of bluebirdluxe informing me I had won her drawing for the Kanzashi in Bloom book. Looking back, I guess I should have gone out right then and bought a lotto ticket. Anywho, the book came so nicely wrapped that I had a hard time opening it.

But then I did.

And now I will be making flowers until further notice (:

A trip to the fabric store is in order. I’ll post pictures of the ones I don’t screw up too badly.


Well, actually, while I was on vacation I found out that I won TWO contests! Not too shabby, eh? The first was a design contest for the cover of Loyola University Chicago’s continuing education catalogs for Fall 2010 and Spring 2011. Continuum is in it’s 5th year, so I decided to focus on that milestone in my design. Here are the winning entries:

And here is the final version of the Fall/Winter catalog, with Loyola’s changes (the Spring version has not been finalized yet):

Tomorrow I’ll tell you more about the other contest I won. It was more of a luck-of-the-draw type thing (:


Last month, J and I were lucky enough to have lots of family come see us in Chicago (his sister and her family and my brothers’ daughters). I love when we have company because it means we get to see the city through their eyes and do things like pretend we’re brave enough to ride the balloon at Navy Pier and then actually ride the swings, eat ice cream at Margie’s, marvel at the ferris wheel lights at night, stand in line for Sprinkles cupcakes, and laugh together at a hilarious musical from the fifth row, center. Among other things – many, many other things. It was awesome. That’s all (:

I’m back! Back in February, I was daydreaming about the annual beach trip. It felt like it would never get here…and now it’s ended. Sad, but I had the best family vacation ever. It was so chill and relaxing. We spent hours and days lounging on the beach, taking walks, riding bikes, flying kites, playing croquet, reading and talking about books, watching brown pelicans fly overhead, playing cards, and eating fresh shrimp. It was dreamy.

The week at the beach was preceded by a visit from J’s sister and her family and followed up by a visit from my brothers’ daughters. Three weeks of family fun and I miss them all already. But it’s time to get back to regularly scheduled programming and it is shaping up to be a busy August. Photo sessions begin again this weekend, so some session previews will be coming soon. In the meantime, I’m going to try to get his house back to it’s usual state of disorder.

August 2010
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