Thursday, October 31, 2013

Snippets + Snapshots | October 2013

Snippets + Snapshots from the past month...
bye bye pop | lumineers concert | with friends | and the hubby | the stage | cute lexi | kittens are bed hogs | journal | snuggle bugs | bed time for gatsby | convo with zoe | with the hubby | lauren's birthday | goofy gatsby | soup for the sickie | new phone arrives | lunch hour time out | the babies | ready for halloween | more pics of the babies | a night at the fair | carving pumpkins with friends | carmel apples | buffett concert | starting the house hunt | halloween costumes


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

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Self-Portrait | October 2013

I don't think I ever mentioned it, but I got started with this self-portrait project because of a photographer whose work I greatly admire. After watching her post her self-portraits month after month, I finally decided to follow in her foot steps and embark on my own self-portrait project.  Just like she inspired my original journey into the world of self-portraits, she is in a round about way the inspiration for October's self-portrait.

Last month she posted her portrait along with a detailed discussion of changes she has made to her diet recently.  She discussed a book she had read that inspired her new way of eating. Everything she wrote really resonated with me, so I decided to check out the book she discussed. (If you're interested, you can find her post here.)

While skimming the book, I came upon a section that talked about a series of symptoms describing a condition labeled "spent".  The book included a list of about 9-10 things and suggested that if you were experiencing 3 of them, you weren't in a good place to start the dietary changes in the book.  Instead, it suggested that you read another book, which discusses a strategy to get over being "spent" with things in addition to dietary changes.  Since I am currently suffering from not one, not two, not three, but EVERY SINGLE SYMPTOM the book listed, I decided to purchases the referenced book and have been reading it over the past month.

I won't bore you with too many of the details, but the book is called Revive, and it is a 6 week program designed to help you get over what basically feels like complete physical, mental, and spiritual exhaustion.  The best way I can describe it is by saying that I kind of feel like I've been run over by a semi and I don't have the energy or the desire to even try to get back up.

It details pretty intensive changes to incorporate into your life - many dietary, but also other things such as sleep habits, exercise changes, reconnecting with some of the simpler things in life - friends, laughter, nature.  I know that if I tried to embark on the 6 week program as it's written, I'd crash and burn after 2 days.  Instead, I'm going to turn the 6 week program into more like a 6 month to 1 year program, as I try to make permenant changes to my diet and life style to bring about a heather and happier me.

My main focus for October involves changing what I've been drinking to eliminate the unhealthy, unnatural things.  So, on the 1st of the month I gave up all pop, on the 15th I gave up all caffeinated beverages.  And on the 30th, I'm giving up anything that isn't a natural drink - i.e. water, 100% natural fruit juices, or milk.  (And I don't drink much milk or fruit juice, so mostly it's water.)

In order to mix it up a bit, I've been experimenting with different types of citrus fruits in my water the past few weeks, but so far lemon is still my fav.  I've been keeping a pitcher of flavored water in the fridge at all times for quick access.  I decided to take my self-portrait this month while making one of my pitchers of water since this change in my drink habits as been the main focus of my month.

So here I am, squeezing a few lemons...


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, October 26, 2013

BBL 2013-2014 | Start a Love/Gratitude Journal With the Hubby


#29 START A LOVE/GRATITUDE JOURNAL WITH THE HUBBY

Why did I include this on my Bucket List?

I stumbled upon this idea when I was searching for something completely unrelated and a blog post popped up in my search results talking about creating a love journal with your spouse.  I thought it sounded like such a great idea that I decided to add it to my Birthday Bucket List.  In relationships, and in life, sometimes it is too easy to focus on the negatives.  I thought it would be a good way to try to spend more time paying attention to the positives.

Was the experience what I had hoped it would be?

We've been keeping the journal for about a month, and so far the experience has been a good one. Keeping this journal has me spending more time looking for the good as I ponder what to write in the journal the next time I get it back.  It has me noticing and appreciating more of the nice things that Kevin does instead of taking them for granted.  I know it probably sounds a little bit corny, but I really do think it is bringing about some good changes.

The details...

A love and gratitude journal is exactly what it sounds like - a place to write about love and gratitude for each other.  Basically, we write things like "I love you becauase..."  "Thank you for...."  "I appreciate that you..." One of us writes something nice to the other and then places the journal some place where the other will find it.  Once the other person does find it, they write something in it, and then leave it for the other to find again.

Kevin picked out the book we are using for our journal, and they didn't have an orange one, so of course it had to be green!





Do you want to see my entire 2013-2014 Birthday Bucket List?  You can find it here. Did you miss my 2012-2013 List? You can find it here.  Or my 2011-2012 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

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Phoenix School of Law | Student Head Shots

I am once again thrilled to share more Phoenix School of Law student head shot photos with you. It is such a pleasure to take photos for these hard working future attorneys.  I am honored that the school keeps allowing me to return and that more students keep requesting photos!  I once again have a growing list of interested individuals so hopefully I will be announcing another date soon. (Upcoming dates will be announced on Facebook, so be sure to like my page if you're interested in photos.)

In the mean time, please allow me to introduce you to all of these future attorneys:

Meet Asia...



Emmanuel...



Kelly...



Sarah...



and Sam...



I once again want to say thank you to each of these individuals for allowing me to take these photos for them, and wish all of them success with the rest of law school and their future careers.

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, October 18, 2013

Happy 6th Birthday, Zoe!

The fact that I am posting these photos over a month late speaks volumes about the insanity that has been my life the past few months. (So does the severe lack of blog posts lately, but let's not talk about that.)  With the temps cooling off, my shooting schedule is starting to pick up a bit. I've been busy editing the law student head shots that I took in August and September. And, I've been picking up as many extra days as possible at my day job because I have my sights set on purchasing a house here in Phoenix in the not too distant future and I'm trying to save as much as I can for a down payment.

All of that craziness added up to poor Zoe having to wait to celebrate her birthday and then these images sitting on the memory card in my camera for another few weeks until I finally had a few minutes to pull them off last night.

If you've been around for a while, then you know what is in store.  If you're new, then let me explain: Our dogs are spoiled rotten!  We celebrate their birthdays, Christmas, and sometimes other holidays too, by wrapping toys and treats in tissue paper for Zoe and Lexi.  We then put them in bags and let them tear them open. They love it, and it is an absolute riot to watch!  One of these days I need to skip the photos and record a video instead, but as you can plainly see I opted for lots of photos this time.

When I went to take these photos, I wanted to kick myself, though! I only own one memory card that has a decent enough write speed to keep up with the dogs tearing around the house with their toys.  Sadly, I had just used it a few days before for a client session for no reason other than it was the card in my camera and I was lazy and didn't change it before the session. I NEVER delete client photos off of my memory cards until the photos have been delivered so I had to settle for using a different card.  As a result, I couldn't capture as many action shots as I usually do because the darn card couldn't keep up with my camera's continuous shooting speed.

What can I say?  At least it was the kick in the pants I needed to make me order another memory card with a decent read/write speed, so hopefully the same issue won't happen again.

Our pets are the only grand babies on both sides of our families, so Kevin's mom and mine love to spoil them.  Both of them sent gifts for the girls to open for Zoe's birthday this year, and between all of their gifts I decided that I didn't even need to give them most of the toys I had purchased.  So, I tucked them away for Lexi's birthday in early December.

Here's a photo of all of their loot before we gave it to them...


Sitting patiently, waiting for their first gift.  They look calm, but once that bag hits the floor all bets are off!...


Zoe's favorite part is destroying the bags.  She tears them apart until there's nothing left but tiny pieces...


Ever since she was a puppy, Lexi has been in love with little pom-poms on toys.  When I first brought her home, one of her toys had a Santa hat on it with a pom-pom on the end of it and I think that started her love affair with them.  My mom bought a huge bag of them a few years ago, and she will sew them on to the toys for Lexi, like you can see here. (Did I mention our dogs are spoiled)...


All that playing tuckered Lexi out, so she had to take a break, while using her toy as a pillow...



It depresses me how little time I have spent behind my new camera since I purchased it this past spring. I haven't had much opportunity to really test it out and see what it can do.  So I used these photos as a chance to test its ISO limits a bit and set it to 6400.  Most of the photos look pretty decent, but you can really see the noise in these next handful of Zoe.  I don't mind it with the black and white edit, but I wasn't too fond of the color versions of these.  Either way, it sure beats the heck out of my old camera!

This series of photos of Zoe tearing apart this tissue paper and then getting it stuck in her mouth had me cracking up while I was culling these images and decided to include all of them.  I hope you get as much of a kick out of them as I did!...






Lexi the little toy hoarder...


Mine!...


Some of Lexi's faces were cracking me up too!...


Even the kittens decided to get in on the action and check out what all the fuss was about.  I've been surprised by how un-intimitated (yes, I think I made that word up.) Daisy and Gatsby have been by the dogs.  They don't let the dogs push them around or scare them off very often.  Most of the time they stand their ground when the dogs get in their faces.

Gatsby's not quite sure what to make of the commotion, but she decided to check it out...


Apparently this toy was a big hit with the kittens, as it attracted both of their attention.  First Gatsby...


And then Daisy a few minutes later...


Daisy's watching the dogs act crazy, and she's not sure if she should run or join in...


If you made it this far, thanks for stick with me for this long winded post!

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

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Phoenix School of Law | Student Head Shots

As promised, here are more student head shots from my visit to Phoenix School of Law a few weeks ago.  So without further ado, please allow me to share photos of all of these awesome future attorneys!

Meet Addison...



Brandy...



Duncan...



Jaimie...



Rebecca...



And Vickie...



And stay tuned, because I have one more set of student photos to share very soon!

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

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Kristin + Michael's Sneak Peek {Engagement Session}

I couldn't be more excited to share this sneak peek of Kristin and Mike's engagement photos! I know I say it every time I post engagement photos, but I just love working with couples. It's an honor to be able to capture such an important time in their lives and to preserve their precious memories for them.

Before the session, Kristin told me that they were up for anything and they weren't afraid to get a little dirty. Hearing that was absolute music to my ears!  True to their word, Mike and Kristin really were up for anything I suggested and didn't bat an eye even when I had them sitting in the dirt, rearranging piles of rocks, climbing up a mountain, and dangling over the edges of overhangs.  AND Kristin did it all in a dress! I can't remember the last time I had so much fun shooting a session, and it was a blast spending my Friday evening with them.  If they didn't have plans scheduled after their session, I probably could have kept them there shooting for another hour or two.

So, please allow me the honor of introducing you to Kristin and Mike:

This photo was the very first photo that I took. Seriously, who looks that awesome in their very first photo? These two, apparently! Normally, it takes people a little while to warm up and relax before they start looking and feeling natural but these two were rocking it right from the very first second...





This is definitely one of my favorites!...



A fun little shot with Kristin's ring...


Another favorite...


I just love the dreamy look to these images in black and white!  I know not everyone loves b+w like I do, so I only included one here, but take my word when I say the whole series is gorgeous if you're a b+w lover...



I didn't know it when I decided to toss in these scrabble letters at the last minute for a little fun with Kristin's ring, but it turns out that Kristin's family is big into scrabble.  It was fate!...


Adorable, right?...


Kristin and Mike are planning on having a desert theme at their wedding, so they requested a location for their engagement photos that would really capture the amazing Arizona desert landscape.  I think they picked a perfect location, don't you?









Another favorite!  Not only because I love the image, but because Kristin and Mike were total rock stars to climb up the back of the rocks and out on that ledge!...


Kristin and Mike, thank you for allowing me to take these photos for you! It was amazing working with both of you, and thank you for being so awesome and up for anything I suggested. I wish you two a lifetime filled with love and laughter.

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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