Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Snippets + Snapshots | February 2013

Snippets + Snapshots from the past month...
becoming a flash master | practicing with the hubby | me | cute cuddly sweetpea | back to school bar-b-q | arizona bonfire | say what? | kevin's birthday gift | celebrating at the cinema | and with cheesecake! | sweetpea zoe again | new reads | sharing the love | i didn't do it mama | no more house hubby | february inspiration board | cuddle bugs | couch hogs | chillin in the sunshine | valentine's flowers | dressed for dinner | wine! | lovebirds | double feature to celebrate | fire in the sky | new dinner destination | play me a tune | snuggles | the word from the dogs: it's quittin time | bingo! | lip licking good | setting sun reflection in pools of slushy hail mix | shopping trip score: new dress | she thinks she's human | selfie | hiking, hiking, hiking, hiking | kevin thinks he's tough | celebrating birthday party style | cheesecake again!


If you want to see all of my Instagram photos, you can check them out online here or search for me on the app - my user name is michelewhitacre!

Michele Whitacre is a portrait photographer serving Phoenix, Arizona and the surrounding area.
Visit Michele's Website | Like Michele on Facebook | Follow Michele on Instagram | Follow Michele on Twitter
© 2013 Michele Whitacre Photography LLC© 2013 Michele Whitacre Photography LLC

Monday, February 25, 2013

Self-Portrait | February 2013

Back in September 2012 I vowed to lose some weight and posted my before photos as my self-portrait that month.  I wish I was reporting in with my after photos to tell you that I'd lost all of the weight I wanted to lose, but I'm not quite there yet.

However, I have managed to lose 15 lbs and keep it off since early November!  I'm super excited to be where I am.  On a whim I decided to try to squeeze myself into the jeans I wore 3 1/2 years ago in our engagement photos.  I had no idea if I would be able to get them on, but I somehow managed to get into them.  I was even able to get them zipped and buttoned!  I'm not going to say I could actually breathe in them, but who needs to do that?

I decided for February's photo I would show myself jumping for joy in the jeans...


On a side note, jumping like this for photos is insanely exhausting!  It was a sad reminder just how out of shape I am and it filled me with empathy for all of the past clients I have requested to do this for photos.  This is just one of the many reasons I keep going with this monthly self-portrait project.  I want the constant reminder of what it feels like to be in front of the camera so I always remember what my clients are experiencing when I photograph them.

Did you miss some of my past self-portraits?  Clicking here will take you to all of my self-portrait blog posts. Clicking here will take you to my self-portrait Facebook album.

Michele Whitacre is a portrait photographer serving Phoenix, Arizona and the surrounding area.
Visit Michele's Website | Like Michele on Facebook | Follow Michele on Instagram | Follow Michele on Twitter


© 2013 Michele Whitacre Photography LLC

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Puppy Love Project {Fundraiser Event}

Earlier in the month I had the opportunity to take some photographs of a fundraising event hosted by the members of Phoenix Style Collective...


which benefited the Arizona Humane Society....


The humane society didn't have any animals at the event, but one of the attendees brought along this little cutie to greet everyone who came to make a donation...



A $10 donation was suggested to attend the event, and as a thank you they were giving away these adorable bracelets. Love!!...


The event was held in Phoenix at Co+Hoots, which was an awesome space with a great vibe.




The members of Phoenix Style Collective gathered tons of awesome prizes to be raffled off and bid on during a silent auction...









All donated by very generous sponsors...


At the end of the evening everyone was given a goody bag full of taffy.  Yum!...


By the end of the night, Phoenix Style Collective raised almost $500 to donate to the Humane Society.  A huge success, indeed!  It was an honor to be able to attend this event and capture some photos of it.

Michele Whitacre is a portrait photographer serving Phoenix, Arizona and the surrounding area.
Visit Michele's Website | Like Michele on Facebook | Follow Michele on Instagram | Follow Michele on Twitter



© 2013 Michele Whitacre Photography LLC

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Lexi and Zoe would like to wish you a Happy Valentine's Day!


Michele Whitacre is a portrait photographer serving Phoenix, Arizona and the surrounding area.
Visit Michele's Website | Like Michele on Facebook | Follow Michele on Instagram | Follow Michele on Twitter


© 2013 Michele Whitacre Photography LLC

Monday, February 11, 2013

Kara's Sneak Peek

Meet Kara, the super sweet and gorgeous wife of one of my hubby's law school classmates.  Kara and I decided to do a little old school bartering - photography lessons in exchange for modeling. Kara owns a DSLR that she's been wanting to learn how to use in manual mode and I've been admiring Kara's amazing fashion style for months and wanted to get her in front of my camera.

A few emails back and forth to make the arrangements and voilĂ !  Kara is on her way to becoming an awesome photographer and I get to add her beautiful face to my portfolio. I think I came out the winner on that deal!  I'm pretty much in love with every single photo I took of Kara, she's so stinkin' cute in every single one.

See...



Somebody thought Kara looked especially awesome during this set of photos, and honked at her while they drove by. I can't say I'm surprised. Look how amazing she looks!...







If I was smart I would have traded photography lessons for fashion lessons instead.  I mean seriously! How awesome are those shoes?!...



Kara, Thank you so much for allowing me to take your photos.  It was such fun spending my Sunday evening hanging out with you. I can't wait to show you the rest of the photos. :)

Michele Whitacre is a portrait photographer serving Phoenix, Arizona and the surrounding area.
Visit Michele's Website | Like Michele on Facebook | Follow Michele on Instagram | Follow Michele on Twitter


© 2013 Michele Whitacre Photography LLC

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Josh + Trisha's Sneak Peek

Last night I had the pleasure of photographing Josh and Trisha, who just so happen to be one of the sweetest (and most photogenic, I might add) couples ever.  I couldn't be more excited to share their photos and I know they are excited to see them.  So, I decided to get their sneak peek done in record time.  Plus, I thought their photos would make the perfect start to this week, since Valentine's Day is right around the corner after all.

Josh and Trisha were both awesome to work with.  I just love it when I get to photograph clients who are truly excited about having their photos taken, and these two were a dream come true.  Josh and Trisha are so cute together that choosing the photos for this sneak peek was nearly impossible.  When I sort through the images from a session, the first thing I do is rate all of my absolute favorites as 5 stars.  I usually have around 20 favorites after the first round of sorting to narrow down for the sneak peek.  After the first round of their session I had over 50 photos that I'd 5 stared!  Yikes!

After much debate, I finally settled on these images to share.  I couldn't narrow it down by favorites, so I opted for variety instead.  So, let's get to the pictures, shall we?



This one definitely makes it into my top ten. I can't get over how adorable Trisha's outfit is. I just love those tights and boots!...


This one is another fav...



Doesn't Trisha have THE BEST smile?...









This is another of my favorites...




This was the very last photo that I took of Josh and Trisha, and they still both look AMAZING! Usually after two hours, clients are exhausted from posing and sometimes the final photos show it. But not these two! It even rained on us briefly during the session, and they both still look this awesome...


Josh and Trisha, Thank you so much for allowing me to take these photos for you! It was amazing working with you and getting to know you both better during our session. I hope you enjoy seeing your photos as much as I enjoyed taking them.

Michele Whitacre is a portrait photographer serving Phoenix, Arizona and the surrounding area.
Visit Michele's Website | Like Michele on Facebook | Follow Michele on Instagram | Follow Michele on Twitter


© 2013 Michele Whitacre Photography LLC

Friday, February 8, 2013

Look What's Cooking! {Interview with Sherry Dryja}

Recently, I had the honor of photographing a bread-making workshop, where participants learned how to make no-knead Artisan bread. Photographing this type of event was a first for me, and I was really surprised how much I loved it.  I'd never given any thought to doing food/cooking photography before, but this experience was too amazing for words!  I am definitely going to be keeping my eye out for other opportunities to photograph similar events in the future.


The workshop was taught by Sherry Dryja, who was gracious enough to allow me to interview her for this feature post.  So read on to learn more about Sherry and her cooking blog!


Sherry is the author of Kitchen Dilettante. Kitchen Dilettante is a blog which helps new cooks build confidence in the kitchen through tips, demonstrations, product reviews, and uncomplicated recipes. She grew up in Texas, but as a self-proclaimed nomad she has lived all over the United States. In addition to living in Texas, she also spent part of her childhood in Arkansas and Oklahoma. As an adult, she has had the opportunity to taste life in West Virginia, Washington D.C., Minneapolis, and Seattle. Sherry’s travels have taken her all over North America, South America, Israel, and Europe. She claims a strange and not quite understood kinship with the people of Canada, and perhaps one day she might feel at home there. But for now Sherry resides in Phoenix, Arizona with her husband, Michael, and their dog, Lukas, who Sherry describes as, “a miniature schnauzer with the temperament of that sheepdog in the old Bugs Bunny cartoons--very calm and laid back.”

This is Lukas, who was at the workshop to supervise and ensure that the floor stayed spotless...


When did you first fall in love with cooking?

I was late to the cooking game. My first forays into the kitchen were met with such huge failure that, to this day, they are family jokes. When I did try to sneak into the kitchen to try again, I tried to take on recipes which were far more advanced than I was. I made it overly complicated and, as a result, got overly frustrated and quit. It wasn’t until I was in my mid-30s when a friend gave me my first Barefoot Contessa cookbook that I started to see things differently. I like the way she writes. Her directions are easy to follow. Her books and TV show taught me that food can be good even if it doesn’t look “perfect”. I had lots of success with her recipes and, as a result, I started relaxing, enjoying the process. Now, nearly 10 years later, my family actually thinks I can cook!

How did you get started writing a cooking blog?

I am a writer by nature. (You can see from this interview I am a bit wordy.) I needed something to focus on and cooking seemed like a natural direction, given how much I enjoy doing it. Kitchen Dilettante was my first attempt at blogging, which began in 2009. I wasn’t sure what I was doing back then, or what I wanted to do, so a lot of my articles were all over the map--and sometimes still are. These days, I’m focusing on the new cook--the person who looks at a recipe for lasagna and their eyes cross not knowing what to do. I used to be that cook, but I’ve come a long way just by trying and trying again. KD is meant to be a resource, provide encouragement, and provide a sense of community for people just starting out in the kitchen.

How did your blog get its name?

I’m embarrassed to admit that the name for my blog came about because I have a short attention span. I stay interested in something for a while and then, when I feel I have accomplished it enough, I move on to something else. That’s essentially what a dilettante is, a Jane of all trades, master of none. When I came up with the name for my blog, I had to be realistic and name it something that allowed flexibility if I got restless writing about cooking. Happily, though, my love for All Things Kitchen has not waned. Four years later, I’m still busily trying new things. Maybe cooking is the exact challenge I needed all along. It’s hard to lose interest in something that is so vast you could spend a lifetime on it and still not know how to do everything.

Where does your inspiration for your posts come from?

Inspiration for my posts comes mostly from readers who visit the site and comment on the articles. The goal is to provide encouragement, or at least camaraderie, to others out there just starting out or struggling with cooking.

How did you get started teaching workshops?

The workshops grew out of the blog topics. One topic that has been hugely popular is how to make artisan bread. I have posted about it a lot and spoken about it with people who read the blog, but nearly every single person says it intimidates them. I know that feeling. I’ve been there. The workshops are a way to bring people together, get their hands doughy, ask their questions as they’re going through the recipe, and go home with success.

What is the one kitchen gadget you absolutely could not live without and why?

This question actually inspired a recent blog post. My answer is given grudgingly because I must admit that I can’t live without something that I hate: the food processor. It’s big, it’s clunky, it’s heavy, and it takes up way too much space in my cabinet and dishwasher, but I love how quickly it shreds cheese, grates carrots, turns hard bricks of chocolate into powder, and blends up sauces in seconds. It even kneads dough. Now if only I could get it to shrink when I wash it or put it away.

Do you write about any other topics?

My husband and I travel a lot, so two years ago I started a travel blog called “Jet Planes and Coffee”. When I’m not traveling, that blog turns into a “traveling the road of life” blog with guest posts from other writers, and articles about inspiring people I’ve met. I have a lot of fun writing the human interest stories because I get to meet people who are living out their dreams.


If you would like to stay up to date to Sherry’s cooking adventures you can join her over at Kitchen Dilettante. If you want to read about her travels, swing on over to Jet Planes and Coffee to see where she will be jetting off to next. Better yet, join her on facebook where she posts links to all of her blog entries and other writings.

Sherry, thank you for allowing me to interview you for my blog and for letting me photograph your bread-making workshop! It was such a pleasure getting to know you and your students during this class.  I might have to return to a workshop in the near future as a student, because who can resist bread that looks this amazing?...



Michele Whitacre is a portrait photographer serving Phoenix, Arizona and the surrounding area.
Visit Michele's Website | Like Michele on Facebook | Follow Michele on Instagram | Follow Michele on Twitter


© 2013 Michele Whitacre Photography LLC
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