Monday, September 30, 2013

Snippets + Snapshots | September 2013

Snippets + Snapshots from the past month...
waiting for a bath | curious kitty | help! | love those eyes | lift me up | so adorable | love me some palm trees | so silly | bath time for the pups | channeling her inner zoe | awesome assistant | making friends | need a bigger bed | kitty seat thieves | jealousy | sunset porn | pouting | feeling at home | thinks she's a cat | blue for my birthday | kitty snuggles | cake! | presents from mom | birthday selfie at work | mystery celebration chauffeur | first stop | birthday flowers | with the hubby | dinner + dessert | birthday toast | present from the hubby | comedy show with friends | birthday gift from a sweet friend | all my babies | spoiled kitties | saying goodbye | new collars for the pups | the aftermath | zoe's birthday loot

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

Friday, September 27, 2013

Birthday Bucket List | 2013-2014 Edition


Since my next birthday is a big one, I decided to go big with this year's Birthday Bucket List.  Instead of my usual 12 items, I decided to go with a list of 40 things I want to do before my 40th birthday. (Unless someone invents the rewind button for life first, in which case the only thing I want to do is go back to being 25!)

Not everything on this list will be a ton of fun, but sometimes the end goal is worth the work. Plus, there should be more than enough good stuff on the list to balance it out and make me forget about the tough ones.

So here is my 2013-2014 Birthday Bucket List:

1. Perform a random act of kindness... CHECKED + BLOGGED

2. Tell someone that they inspire me... CHECKED + BLOGGED

3. Tell someone that I admire them... CHECKED + BLOGGED

4. Hike Camelback Mountain... CHECKED + BLOGGED

5. Tube the Salt River... CHECKED + BLOGGED

6. Have my handwriting analyzed

7. Go on a picnic... CHECKED + BLOGGED

8. Watch a movie at the drive in... CHECKED + BLOGGED

9. Watch a silent film... CHECKED + BLOGGED

10. Watch, read, or listen to 40 things suggested by others... CHECKED + BLOGGED

11. Read 40 new books... CHECKED + BLOGGED

12. Watch 40 new movies... CHECKED + BLOGGED

13. Write a letter to my future self... CHECKED + BLOGGED

14. Write a letter to an old friend... CHECKED + BLOGGED

15. Write a letter to a new friend... CHECKED + BLOGGED

16. Find an awesome sangria recipe... CHECKED + BLOGGED

17. Join a gym... CHECKED + BLOGGED

18. Make a list of 50 places I want to visit... CHECKED + BLOGGED

19. Make a list of 101 things that make me smile... CHECKED + BLOGGED

20. Make a list of 200 words that describe me... CHECKED + BLOGGED

21. Go social media free for 48 hours... CHECKED + BLOGGED

22. Follow a sugar free diet for 30 days... CHECKED + BLOGGED

23. Give up pop for 30 days... CHECKED + BLOGGED

24. Kick my caffeine habit... CHECKED + BLOGGED

25. Visit a farmers market... CHECKED + BLOGGED

26. Visit Jerome, Arizona... CHECKED + BLOGGED

27. Visit Payson, Arizona... CHECKED + BLOGGED

28. Buy a house... CHECKED + BLOGGED

29. Start a love/gratitude journal with the hubby... CHECKED + BLOGGED

30. Have new professional photos taken with the hubby... CHECKED + BLOGGED

31. Plan a surprise for the hubby... CHECKED + BLOGGED

32. Make a list of things I love about the hubby... CHECKED + BLOGGED

33. Look up the meaning/history of my name... CHECKED + BLOGGED

34. Remove everything from my closet that doesn't make me feel beautiful... CHECKED + BLOGGED

35. Attend a photography conference... CHECKED + BLOGGED

36. Update my website

37. Purchase a marco lens... CHECKED + BLOGGED

38. Photograph a maternity session... CHECKED + BLOGGED

39. Photograph a trash the dress session... CHECKED + BLOGGED

40. Photograph a wedding... CHECKED + BLOGGED

As I complete the items, I will mark them off the list and write a blog post about the experience. I'm a little nervous about my ability to complete all of these items in the next 12 months, but I am going to give it my best shot!  I am really excited about some of this year's items, and looking forward to marking more things off of my Bucket List.

Did you miss my 2012-2013 Birthday Bucket List? You can find it here. Or my 2011-2012 Birthday Bucket List? You can find it here.

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, September 24, 2013

Self-Portrait | September 2013

I used to be a chronic sufferer of "I'll Be Happy When" Syndrome. You know the one, it goes something like this: I'll be happy just as soon as I... grow up, graduate from high school, graduate from college, get a job, quit my job, become my own boss, go back to college, lose 20 lbs, get married, get divorced, buy a house, sell a house, live where it doesn't snow, adopt a dog, adopt a cat, etc, etc, etc, etc.

For years, I actually believed that I would, in fact, be happy once I had traversed my way through whatever hardship I believed was keeping me from my happiness. I would picture my future self on the other side of the perceived obstacle full of contentment and be sure that if I just hung in there that perfect life was waiting for me.

But no matter how hard I pictured that perfect life, it never showed up.

There was always something else waiting right around the corner that I needed to "get through" before I was going to be truly happy. As the months turned into years and the things I had managed to get through began piling up without resulting in the happiness I was positive was coming, I starting losing faith in the notion that I ever would be happy and content with my life.

Because let's be honest for a minute. After you've moved across the country FOUR. DIFFERENT. TIMES. in search of a happiness that you never found, you can't help but realize that perhaps there is a major flaw in your theory.

Once I realized that the happiness I'd been promising myself wasn't actually waiting around the corner like I'd always believed, I just gave up.  I quit believing.  I quit hoping.  I quit dreaming. I quit planning. I quit living.  And I've been doing nothing but going through the motions of life ever since.

Only I didn't realize that I was doing it.  Until now.

So, why the wake up call all of a sudden?

I just turned 39 a few days ago.  39!

And I just might be a wee little bit freaked out about that.

When you reach the point where you no longer know if you have more years ahead of you than you have behind you, it changes the way you view things.  I'm starting to realize that I need to take a good hard look at my life and decide what needs to go, what needs to stay, and what needs to change.  I need to figure out how to find peace with myself and my life because I refuse to enter the first year of my 40s the same way I entered the last year of my 30s.


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

Saturday, September 21, 2013

BBL 2012-2013 | Become a Regular


#1 BECOME A REGULAR

Why did I include this on my Bucket List?

I've been struggling to feel at home since I relocated to Phoenix, and I thought that if I started visiting some place on a regular basis where I got to know the other people who were also regulars (or workers) there maybe it would help.

Was the experience what I had hoped it would be?

I didn't accomplish this in quite the way I imagined, so it wasn't exactly what I had in mind. However, it still feels great to feel "at home" some place.

The details...

When I put this on my Birthday Bucket List, I was thinking something along the lines of becoming a regular at the gym, or a yoga class, or a book club, or a hiking club, or the library, or maybe a Saturday morning brunch spot. It wasn't until I was looking back over my 2012-2013 list in preparation for my 2013-2014 list that I even realized I had accomplished this item without even intending.

Oddly enough, the place where I have turned into a regular is the spa where I get my nails and toes done every few weeks. After being a client there for the past 8-9 months, I am greeted by name when I walk in the door. They know when it has been longer than usual since I've been in and comment that they haven't seen me in a while. They know what services I usually have done, and even know what polish colors I usually pick - like at my last visit when I picked out a color much lighter than I usually do and the technician painted one nail, only to stop and say that it was too light and went over and picked a darker color that was the exact color I had in mind only the one I picked had been deceiving in the bottle.


Do you want to see my entire 2012-2013 Birthday Bucket List? You can find it here.  Or did you miss my 2011-2012 Birthday Bucket List? You can find it here.

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, September 20, 2013

Phoenix School of Law | Student Head Shots

I once again had the great privilege of returning to Phoenix School of Law to take head shots for more of the dedicated future attorneys who attend school there. This is only a portion of the photos from my visit, so stay tuned for more head shots coming soon.

It was such a pleasure getting to meet and chat with all of these awesome individuals, and I just want to tell them all thank you for allowing me to take these photos.  Good luck with the rest of your law school studies and future careers, everyone!

Meet Kelly...



Chantel...



Adam...



Nancy...



Sasha...



and Paulina...



Want to see more? You can find past Phoenix School of Law Student Head Shot photos here and here.

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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