There has been a lot of interest in the upcoming I Heart Faces Photo Walk Across America. As leader of the Bisbee Photo Walk, I find myself advertising the event to everyone who will listen. Many people ask me "what IS a photo walk?" Other people say "I can never find anything worth photographing in the desert, it's so BROWN!" And there was once a time when I couldn't agree more. But just last night I went outside to try to photograph the full moon that was rising. Moons bug me, I can never make them appear as large as they do in person, the magic is never translated through my camera. But then I realized, while playing in the shrubbery for ten minutes, that when I focused on other things in my scene, the moon became much larger. Photography is all about how you "see" the world. Here is a little demonstration: The first image is exactly what I saw on the hill behind my house. There is construction going on and work trailers and lots of dirt, and in general it is NOT where you want to go to take pictures. But I stayed and spent ten minutes looking around, squatting down low, walking up higher, holding my camera to the ground, focusing near, focusing far, and the results were the perfect example for my demonstration. My hope is that anyone interested in photography will attend my Photo Walk and learn a little bit about "seeing" the world around them in a new way, in a way worth photographing. Lord knows the Army sends us to live in some desolate places, so this could be a valuable skill to learn!




My parents find the most incredible toys for my kids. The Bubble Gun came from the New York State Fair, one of those display models that someone demonstrates with extra enthusiasm and flair and after seeing how cool it is you just have to have one. We had the boys in the tub and decided to turn off the lights to watch the bubble movie maker in action, it was too neat to NOT try to photograph it. At 1600 ISO, and using my 24-70mm wide open at F2.8, the results were very wacky, but too fun not to share.

We awoke to 3 inches of SNOW! In April! Late April, in Southern Arizona! It was like Mother Earth crying out "it's my party and I'll snow if I want to!" Having already packed up the winter gear, and enjoyed two straight weeks of wearing shorts and slathering the kiddos with sunscreen, I spent half the morning hunting for stray mittens and gloves, the other half of the morning wiggling cold little fingers into the tiny finger holes in said gloves. By 3pm they were back outside in only sweatshirts without a flake of snow to be seen anywhere. It was as though it were all a dream, but I have the pictures to prove it was not!

I AM HONORED, ELATED, no, CRAZY EXCITED!! to announce that the city of Bisbee, Arizona, has been selected as one of the 20 US cities featured in the I Heart Faces Walk Across America Photo Walk! And yours truly is going to be leading this very fun morning! I've got some really cool ideas that will ONLY be seen on our walk, trust me, we live in the Wild West afterall... You don't need to be a pro to join the fun, you just need a camera and some enthusiasm and leave the rest to me! Read on!

CLICK HERE to register for the Bisbee, AZ, I Heart Faces Photo Walk Across America!

To see the other 19 locations where you can participate in this event, CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW:

This week at I Heart Faces we are doing something new and exciting: collages! I love to storyboard and collage when I get too many great images to choose from. My initial thought was to collage images of my three sons that had all been taken at the same age. Alas, I haven't found the time yet to search through my archives to find said images. But I do have this series handy, and it made me laugh when I saw them on the camera.

Anyone who has even tried to photograph a baby knows that for every perfect, sweet, sleepy, curled up infant, you have about a hundred misfires. To see more collages or join the fun yourself, click on the link below!

It was a beautiful day for photography in Southern Arizona. It was overcast! I had some homework to do for an upcoming project so we loaded our circus up in the minivan and drove off into the desert. Spring is in full bloom here, my eyes are so swollen and itchy I can barely see to type, but it certainly yields plenty of gorgeous specimens for photography. I challenged myself and left the house with only my 10-20mm wide angle lens, not my first pick for photographing flowers (I was after architecture today). I will probably drive back to the roadside wildflowers tomorrow with my 24-70mm if the light is favorable. And why is it that these incredible patches of flowers only grow RIGHT next to the road, and you only come across them when the kids have JUST fallen asleep in the car (and stopping the vehicle will surely cause them to wake?!)... So you can neither photograph them properly without getting the road in the image, and you definitely cannot photograph the children playing in them as traffic flings past you at 65mph... The first few are from the winding neighborhoods and gardens in Bisbee, AZ, and the last few are all from the roadside near the San Pedro Riparian Area en route to Bisbee. These are all pretty much straight out of camera except for resizing. The quality of light today had an incredible impact on the colors!

We're short on a few things these days. We're short on sleep. We grab 30 minutes of uninterrupted slumber as though it were gold. We're short on balanced meals, but there is always food on the table. We're short on patience from time to time, mostly it's the boys patience with their Mama, who's about six arms short of what she needs. After a marathon laundry day we are no longer short on clean underwear, phew! It's been one month since bringing our little Bundle home from the hospital. He's alert, his cheeks are filling out, he's starting to develop those thighs that only a baby can get away with. He smiles all the time. He loves his bath as long as someone is holding his hand for the duration (see the photo below) One thing is for certain, we are NOT short on love. Love is something we have a whole lot of these days.

Note: Since this little guy loves his bath sooooooo much, I decided that I would attempt a little bath photo session for the "one month old" mark. We took the tub out on our porch, with that amazing evening light I am always bragging about. I used my 50mm lens, stayed at an F5.6 or there abouts, 125-200 shutter speed depending on which of the extra children was blocking my light.

A very bizarre morning it was... We had taken our children and a picnic lunch to a local park. The park is maybe 2 acres in size at most. Over the course of 2 hours, tipped off by another Mommy visiting the park, we managed to collect over 50 vintage coins from about ten different countries all over the world. The coins were scattered about in a newly seeded patch of grass and the gravel areas surrounding the playground. What fun it was to hunt and search, but it got us wondering about just how these coins came to rest in such an odd place. Are they stolen goods, cast off by teenagers who didn't realize their possible value? Or did a Grandparent with an abundant collection toss them out there for a twist on the old Easter Egg hunt last weekend? We are perplexed, maybe somewhere out there on the internet someone has an answer...

It's bluebonnet season - in Texas... I've been drooling over the amazing patch of bonnets that my friend, and amazingly talented photographer Julie Rivera, has been photographing all weekend. That's what people DO in the spring time in Texas; seek out bluebonnets, which hilariously enough are infested with bugs and snakes and all kinds of uncomfortable natural beings, and plop their newborns and smaller children amongst the blossoms for the annual spring photo. It's a photographer's dream! But, I fins myself trapped in Arizona, where there is NO water to speak of, a pre-requisite for bluebonnets. But things are looking up here in Sierra Vista, we not have bluebonnets, but we have Texas Sage blooming on our highways and byways! It's gorgeous and spreading like a wildfire. Now, if I could just find a brilliant patch to rival Julie's, far enough away from the road that I can let the kiddos loose...

Every afternoon at 4:30pm I find myself in exactly the same seat on the living room couch, nursing my newborn baby born, with the most incredible evening sunlight shining through a set of white curtains behind me. The resulting difused lighting is a photographer's dream... a dream you can't do much about when you are nursing a baby, and then burping the baby, and then most certainly running into the kitchen to finish up dinner preparations. Last night we were ahead of schedule for some reason and the five minutes I did manage with camera in hand, out on the porch, peeking through said window, just melted my heart:

This is one of those photographs where you catch a glimpse of what your baby might look like as he gets older, and it's the first photo where he really defines himself as "different" from his brothers...

We went to a street fair earlier in the day, thus the face paint...

I Heart Faces, a photography blog that I used to participate in weekly (back when I had a chance at winning, back when I was the carefree and well rested mother of only two children) taught me something wonderful today: I LOVE to photograph food! It doesn't get up and giggle as it runs off! It's a wacky week over at I Heart Faces because you don't have to have a FACE in your photo! I can't say that I have done this often, only enough times to get a strange look from bystanders at a party or function, but this is a kind of photography that I could really fall in love with as a profession. Right now, it's a miracle that I a.)had time to make dessert, b.)had time to "plate with pride" as the naked chef says, and c.)photograph the result- and all of this in about 7 minutes, while cooking dinner... like I said - a miracle! (I wish I'd had all day to play on this challenge!)

MY ENTRY - Dessert Pizza:

Every night that we can manage, we like to go for a family walk around our neighborhood. (My husband and I walk, the children alternate between whining and bemoaning the stroller..) We live up in the foothills of the Huachuca Mountains filling our walks with flora and fauna galore. I am usually without the camera because with three boys now in tow, one strapped to me, and 70lbs of combined older siblings in a double stroller, there isn't much room for cargo and certainly not a free hand for picture taking. Lately, the buds have begun to burst and flower, and each night I swear I will bring the camera out on our next walk. Finally! The Bundle and I found ourselves alone; he was happily asleep in the Bjorn on my chest and I was happily toting my Canon! For a wonderfully relaxing 45 minutes we were able to roam the neighborhood in lovely, dusky light, capturing the beauty of spring in our foothills. I will say that getting the images I imagined was more challenging while wearing a baby, but a wonderful evening spent (almost) blissfully alone.