Fall Photo Collection

We all know that I struggle to get my butt outside and go shooting. The problems with mental health issues is that you can often be in an external fight with yourself, between the things you really want to do, but can’t muster the mental energy to just go do it. Often times I have opportunities to go and take pictures, and that internal fight often ends up with me saying, “no.” Sometimes I push through though, and then I get these photos that I just love looking at and knowing that it was a product of me pushing myself forward when my mental health just wants me to lay face down and do nothing. It’s an accomplishment, so when I do get photos I like, I’m proud of them.

The last few weeks I have been out a couple times, and I had a wedding that I shot this weekend as well as a fall couple shoot the day after. I was super nervous/anxious but also excited to them, and I’m so happy that my anxiety chilled out enough that I was able to do my job.

So, over the last few weeks, I went out into the woods in Guysborough County, close to my family’s cottage and just wanted to explore. Look a light, see my favourite places and find some new ones. Become braver and go father into the forest and out into the pasture by myself (there are known black bears out there, so I always get a little nervous.) It was also cool to photograph these spots and see how a couple weeks, and even a couple hours have changed them.

IMG_3402
IMG_3501
This photo was taken September 24th, and it’s so lush and green (though you can see the beginning’s of fall start to happen.)

IMG_3732
This photo was taken almost two weeks later on October 9th, and fall has clearly started.

IMG_3520
Then there was this photo of this mushroom which was taken on September 24th at 10:03am.

IMG_3525
I went back a few hours later and this is what the mushroom looked like at 4:26pm the same day. It was really cool to see.

IMG_3708
I also love how calm the lake can get in the fall, you get this glass effect with a perfect reflection of the colourful trees.

IMG_3698
IMG_3714
IMG_3717
IMG_3749
IMG_3757
IMG_3750
I want to keep fighting my mental health to get out more and shoot. I like just spending time exploring, and I end up actually feeling much better afterwards, but I’m also not going to beat myself up over not getting out either. I know if I do that, I’ll just continue to feel worse.

Advertisements

Beach Photos – A Personal Project

I’ve noticed that a lot of the time when I go shooting it’s usually at the two times of day when the light is gorgeous (dawn/sunrise and dusk/sunset). I just love this look so much, and I’ve found some of my favourite shots are usually from these times. Over the last little while, I’ve been pushing myself again to go out and shoot, even if it’s during these times when I’m the most comfortable shooting and I’ve come out with some fun stuff. I’m also making connections with people, and pushing myself out of my comfort zone (talking to strangers makes me nervous, but apparently having a camera in my hand makes me a bit more confident.)

So, I’m going to share with you guys what I’ve been shooting lately. A lot of it seems to be going in the direction of a personal project, and I hope that I can continue adding to it!

IMG_2977IMG_3208IMG_2986IMG_2995IMG_3090 bigIMG_3216IMG_3000IMG_3105IMG_3236IMG_3271IMG_3229IMG_3250IMG_3251IMG_3245IMG_3037IMG_3337IMG_3370IMG_3256IMG_3261

I ❤ the beach

I’m incredibly blessed to be able to live five minutes from the ocean and ten from the beach. It’s always been in my life, and I’ve never lived anywhere where the ocean has been more then 30 minutes away. I consider it my home, and have experienced it in so many different ways. Last year I had an experience that tainted the beach for me, made it a place of sadness and hurt…a place of anxiousness. I was determined not to let that ruin one of my favourite places to be, so I decided to make new memories there.

It really sucks when something that usually brings you so much joy gets tainted by a painful memory, and when you’re there/when you’re experiencing it, it’s all you can think about and it makes you feel like panicking. I’ve made a point to try and make new and happy memories with the things that have been tainted. I’ve made many visits back to the beach to shoot, and just enjoy the peace again that the ocean brings me and bring joy back to it.

Below are some of the photos I shot the last few trips out, where I made new memories, learned something new and brought new joy to going to the beach.

December 31, 2016
img_0654img_0675img_0687img_0702img_0821-2

April 14, 2017
IMG_2233IMG_2246IMG_2264IMG_2286IMG_2295

April 18, 2017
IMG_2355IMG_2348IMG_2361 copyIMG_2380IMG_2387IMG_2444IMG_2457IMG_2471IMG_2473

4. Go for a photo adventure with people I barely know!

I did something recently that I’ve wanted to do for a long time, and that was, to go on a photo adventure with people I barely know. There was one person I knew personally and well, (Rachel, a former classmate) and then a bunch of faces I either recognized through Instagram, or not at all. With this trip I got to check off 4 things in total on my list. Of course the go on a photo adventure (4), but also, meet someone I follow on Instagram that I haven’t met before (159), go to an instameet/photo walk (160) and make a new friend and make it Facebook official (167). Done, done, done and done!

Because this big bucket list item was also a photo adventure, it would stand to reason that that would, y’know, actually contain pictures. So first, an iPhone photo of the squad for the day…

IMG_2895Shaeline, me, & Rachel! (Thanks Natasha for taking this for me!)

…and the network we were doing, adding each other on Instagram!
IMG_2893.JPGShaeline, Rachel, Natasha, Karlene & Kyla!

Then there were the photos with my camera and not my phone…

IMG_1823Cove Kombucha provided us with some with a bottle of their Kombucha to try while we were out and about shooting.IMG_1832 bwRachel decided that she wanted to be Spider-Man and scale a wall.IMG_1847Raymond was all smiles.
IMG_1853The guys just taking a moment. It was nice meeting them!IMG_1886My new friend Shaeline, shooting Rachel’s portrait.IMG_1888 bwIMG_1909IMG_1913IMG_1911IMG_1918Maugher Beach LighthouseIMG_1947IMG_1955
IMG_1969.jpg
There are so many Rachels :OIMG_2007 bwIMG_2016The view from the fort!
IMG_2021 bwIMG_2024IMG_2053.jpgSuch a beaut!IMG_2057 bwNatural moments, getting to know each other and making photo friends!IMG_2068IMG_2126

If you want to see any of the other shots taken by other photographers from this trip, check out the hashtag #igmcnabs on Instagram and check everyone out! You might even find a few from me there!

Double the Cute, Double the Trouble

Last month friends of mine welcomed two new beautiful (identical) additions to their family, and they recently asked if I would take some photos for them. I had never shot newborns before, and having the opportunity to explore and experience this part of photography made me so excited. Normally I would be nervous too, because never having done this before, I wasn’t sure if I was going to get it right, but I’m happy with my results and didn’t feel nervous at all. The photos aren’t perfect (but these new little boys are, as well as their big brothers) but they’re a great first shot at newborn photography and I’m very happy with them. Without further ado, here are some photos of Israel and Ezekiel, as well as their adorable older brothers Gabriel (Gabe) and Emmanuel (Manny).

CurtzFamily004Big brothers, Manny and Gabe. IMG_1445 bwSweet Gabe. He’s such a wonderful big brother.CurtzFamily010 bwLittle Manny, the little rebel.
IMG_1585 bwEzekiel was wide awake for the first half of the shoot, while Israel just napped on.
IMG_1603IMG_1635IMG_1641 bwIMG_1677IMG_1707 bwCurtzFamily023 bwIMG_1748 bwIMG_1758CurtzFamily033 bw
Thank you Jon and Tonja for trusting me with your two precious little ones as well as the older ones, and thank you for trusting me to capture memories for you. It was awesome being able to learn something new, and snuggle some cute babes.

Going from Me to We

Back in January I did a little photoshoot with one of my friends and coworkers, Abbey (you can check out her blog here). She is one of those young voices who just likes to inspire and talk about the things that are important to her and the world and if you give her like five minutes of your time to chat about one of her favourite organizations, she’ll probably make you want to be apart of it too. Even if it’s just as simple as buying a bracelet. Abbey has such a huge heart for the organization Me to We which is a global initiative that gets people involved in making a difference in places in the world that need our help. There are lots of ways to get involved and it doesn’t even have to be that expensive. Of course there are the trips to Kenya and going into WeVillages that will be quite expensive, but I know Abbey will tell you the trip is so worth it. There is also just supporting them and the companies that support them.

When I first met Abbey, we were actually being interviewed at Chapters for a seasonal position (#indigoemployee in the house!) We didn’t really talk to each other and honestly, I didn’t even realize that that was here until like months later. Then we became friends, and the company decided to keep us both as permanent employees and it was the beginning of a beautiful friendship (and twinship!). There are often times when some of my managers will call me Abbey, and Abbey my name because we kind of look alike. We’re about the the same height, same hair colour, same weight, and we both wear glasses. From behind, the only way to really tell who is who is by our distinct differences in clothing style it would seem, despite our seven year age difference. I’ve even had her sister come up to me when my back was to her and called me by her name, and when I turned around, she was like, “You’re not Abbey.” It gave me a good laugh.

One thing Abbey did share with me while we worked together is her love for the products that come from Me to We. She is always talking about these beautiful rafikis that she wears to anyone who will listen and the cause that they support is a fantastic one. Because of her love and passion for this organization I have so many rafikis of my own (I currently have fourteen and I have two Imani bracelets on their way to me this week!) I have also bought them as gifts for friends because they are such a beautiful and simple piece to add to an outfit, but yet is doing so much good. Single rafikis run about ten dollars per, and when you buy one there is a code written on the back so that you can track your impact.

These two rafikis are my current favourites that I wear all of the time. My Refresh rafiki gives water and my Forever rafiki provides financial tools. When putting my codes to track my impact, I find that my Refresh rafiki has brought clean water to a child in Los Rios, Ecuador and my Forever rafiki has brought a financial literacy toolkit for a woman in Pimbiniet, Kenya. Awesome!

What’s wonderful about these rafikis is that they are all handmade with love by a woman in Kenya. It’s giving them the skills to make products to support themselves as well as those in their community, and beyond. Each piece that is made and sold brings money to a child and their family by supporting their healthcare, their education, food, clean water, financial tools, and opportunities. It’s one small thing that I can do in supporting, selling, and talking about what a fantastic thing these rafikis can do. When talking to my customers at Chapters (#indigoemployee), they get just as pumped hearing that this small thing they are buying for someone or themselves is doubly awesome by also supporting someone half a world away. I also love telling them that these rafikis are not the only things made supporting these families, but that there is a whole website selling so much more that support them (Me To We Store).

Also, their fantastic partnership with DavidsTea that is also bringing support to families half a world away, and for someone who loves DavidsTea, this makes me so happy. This partnership is bringing clean water to children, each product providing a different amount. A 100g tea of their Me to We Tea brings one month of clean water to a child. Their Me to We travel mug brings six months of clean water, and their lip balm and rafiki bracelet gives access. It’s so awesome seeing these two incredible Canadian companies coming together to work on a global change.

So, when I was feeling in a funk about doing my photography stuff (because I get the winter blues, yuck) I had the idea to have a little photoshoot with Abbey to explore a product we both really loved. When I asked her if she’d like to do it, she was practically bouncing she was so excited. When I asked her if she would be down through text, her first response was “HELL YEAH” and so we did it. We were both so excited to do this, and being able to get a photoshoot done with someone that I’m passionate about while having a model who was passionate about it as well was so much fun. Afterwards we grabbed a coffee at Starbucks and chatted, and it was just such a fantastic day that brightened up my winter blues a bit.

img_2355Abbey enjoying that post shoot java boost. My friend is cute as a button!

So, without further ado, the photos from our shoot!

img_0991img_1022img_0981img_1031img_1005img_1011img_1032img_1034bwimg_1014

And just because we have so much fun when we get to hang out, here are a couple outtakes that are just there for the giggles.

Thank you Abbey for just being you, and bringing your love for Me to We to me.

Hello Harbourville

Every time I make my way to the valley, there are two stops that I always make. First, for a Sweet Maria burger and a peanut butter milk shake from Jonny’s Cookhouse in Berwick, which is by far the best burger that I have ever had. (And for someone who doesn’t really enjoy eating meat, that’s saying something!) Sometimes, I even split a poutine with whoever I’m with at the time. I endure long auctions with my family down in Victoria Vale, just to get a taste of this wonderful burger, that’s how I know it’s good and worth it.

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 11.28.06 AM

The second place I stop is in Harbourville, which is probably one of my favourite places in the whole province to stop and visit. There is just something about this place that makes me love it. Maybe it’s because I’m a city girl and I love the feel of life here, but every time I’m there, I want to have my camera in my hand and I want to soak everything up. You can see New Brunswick from across the ocean, the breeze is beautiful, and it’s filled with such natural beauty.

Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 10.52.04 PM.png

Honestly, I feel like it’s easy to fall in love with this little town. There’s not a whole lot there, I’m sure for those who live there, there isn’t much to do, but it has so much beauty. Rocky beaches and fishing boats. Little cottages and cliffs that look over the ocean. There is just something about Harbourville that draws me in every time. Here are some photos from my multiple trips to this cute little fishing village.

IMG_3206
Every time I’m down, I search for this boat. I try to take a photo of it every time I’m there, and the first time, I had no idea it held such significance to a friend of mine. It’s the boat that his father owned before he passed, so I always try to document it while I’m there.

IMG_6773.jpg
Right on the beach. There she is again, the second from the right, Let It Ride.

IMG_8719
The view is so wonderful.

IMG_8737
Tide’s out, boat’s in.

IMG_8758
Tide’s out, boat’s in.

IMG_6745
Cliffs down on another beach.

IMG_3150 copy
Cliffs down on another beach.

IMG_3208 copy
The cliff’s are magnificent.

 

IMG_3195 copy
The view from the look off.

IMG_3200 copy
The view from the look off.

IMG_3214 copy
Snack Shack.

IMG_3217 copy
Snack Shack.

Busyness and Happiness

The last three weeks I have been incredibly busy. I feel like I’ve been full out, and in the last three weeks I’ve only had actually 2 days off where I wasn’t doing something else. October 10-14 I worked everyday, then I had driving school all day on the weekend. Then the next week I worked October 17,18,20,21, with Wednesday being a day free. Then I had Saturday off to myself and on Sunday I went back for my last day of classes in driving school, then a photo shoot for a high school friend. This past week I worked October 24 and 25th, and then on the Wednesday I did another shoot for a friend who was receiving her Canadian citizenship. Then I work today and tomorrow, then I have three glorious days to myself and I cannot wait because I am going to the cottage and I am going to just relax and rest up.

Despite being as hectic as I feel like I have been these last few weeks, I’m so incredibly happy. I mean, I had a four day stretch where I was incredibly anxious and panicky, but that really had nothing to do with how busy I was and more to do with something personal that popped up. But I’m happy. I love being busy,  I love the feeling of accomplishing so much in a short amount of time and being able to do things that I enjoy. Even if I was working that morning, I pushed myself to bring my camera and go shooting in the morning before my shifts and I’ve come out with some really cool shots that I’m happy with.

The only thing that makes this busyness hard to take is that this blog has been taking a bit of a hit by being on the back burner and being this busy consumes a lot of energy. I end up fighting to stay awake at 8pm. I’m usually an early to bed, early to rise girl, but when I’m fighting to keep my eyes open past a really early time in the evening it kind of sucks. I end up crashing hard and when my alarm goes off in the morning it’s a struggle to pull myself out of bed. I normally like to read before I go to sleep as well, and lately the only times I feel like I have the time to read is over my morning tea before I go out shooting, on the bus to work and then on my breaks after I’ve eaten. Other than that though, I’m happy.

I find throwing myself into a crazy busy schedule helps keep my mind busy as well, and for someone who overthinks like it’s her damn job, it gives me a break from my mind just running every possible scenario to get me worked up. It’s a nice change of pace for when I have too much time on my hands and my mind likes to remind me of all the things I should be anxious or upset about. The busyness also helps me appreciate the time I do have when I have it to myself, like spending all day in bed lurking on the internet, or editing photos that I took for my own personal joy, or reading that book that I’m half way through. It makes the moments, even if it’s in the morning before a shift, feel that much sweeter when I can do these things that add a little something extra to my life.

So, despite being incredibly busy, I’m happy. I have shot some photos that I love (that I will show off below), I’ve brought customer joy to many people that have walked through the doors of my workplace, I’ve made new and interesting friends, I’ve brought joy to friends in capturing their special moments, and I’ve improved my life a little bit by doing things that need to get done. This year had some pretty low lows so far, but it’s also had some really high highs and I’m thankful for both. I’ve felt incredible joy because of it.

img_9858img_9869img_9887img_0059img_0077img_0155img_0165img_0174img_0177andreabrandon008andreabrandon010

That Halifax Waterfront Love

The amount I love the Halifax Waterfront is unreal. I read something somewhere that said, “If you want to learn what someone fears losing, watch what they photograph.” which if you think about it in the sense of what they’re shooting for themselves and not for clients, then you’d find that I’d fear losing my city. I know that I want to travel and see the world beyond Halifax, but I don’t ever want to lose my roots here. This is home, and the waterfront is where I’m extremely happy. So, as the summer has gone on, I’ve spent a lot of time shooting it on so many different mornings.

IMG_9309
Historic Properties

IMG_9307
Historic Properties

IMG_9297
The ferries coming in and out.

IMG_9609
The Harbour Queen and Kawartha Spirit docked by Murphy’s.

IMG_9403
The ferry coming in past Murphy’s Restaurant

IMG_9407
A tall ship docked by Murphy’s.

IMG_9611
A tall ship docked by Murphy’s.

IMG_9146
A ferry heading to Woodside on a foggy morning.

IMG_9141
The tall ship Silva docked on a foggy morning.

img_9801
The tall ship Silva in light of the sunrise.

IMG_9670
The Waterfront Piano

IMG_9475
Beavertails

img_9802
Sunrise on the waterfront.

IMG_9241
Halifax Waterfront

IMG_9314
Halifax Waterfront

IMG_9289
Halifax Waterfront

IMG_9113
Halifax Waterfront

IMG_9682
The Last Steps

IMG_9117
Theodore Tugboat

IMG_9615
Theodore Tugboat

IMG_9617
The Halifax Wave

IMG_9453
Halifax Waterfront

img_9809
Halifax Waterfront

IMG_9247
Halifax Waterfront

IMG_9352
The Stubborn Goat Beer Garden

img_9810
Sunrise on the waterfront.

IMG_9135
The fair was in town during the buskers.

IMG_9654
I ❤ Bikes

IMG_9618
Halifax Waterfront
IMG_9622
Halifax Waterfront

IMG_9252
Halifax Waterfront

IMG_9276
Halifax Waterfront

img_9827
Halifax Waterfront

IMG_9279
The Bicycle Thief

img_9828
Fishing on the waterfront during the sunrise.

IMG_9260
Halifax Waterfront

img_9835
Cruise ship coming in to port.

IMG_9374
The Seaport Market

IMG_9273
The Harbourwalk

IMG_9266
The Seaport Market

Good ol’ Goshen and Eight Island Lake

There’s a distinct sound in the way my grandfather’s cabin door slams, that unique cabin smell that lingers on my pillow, the way one of the bedroom doors doesn’t close properly, the heat from the wood stove for when the evenings get a little chilly. There are the memories of sitting watching movies, with a cup of blueberries from my grandfather’s blueberry fields, sprinkled with sugar, and the way kraft dinner tastes after a long day of swimming in the lake and soaking up the sun. The cool nights where bonfires with s’mores, hot dogs, pies made from white bread and berries, and the hilarious stories that are told over these moments.

Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 10.52.46 PM

The games of manhunt with cousins, the way we would take the paddle boat out and go around the island, or the way we’d get someone to yell, “HEN! CHICKEN! ROOSTER! DUCK!” and do our best jump off the dock. The competitions to see who could land the farthest past the noodle someone held out when jumping off, or scoring each other on technique. Mermaid tea parties, fishing off the dock, “Don’t go past the bottle”, “LEECH!”, “Watch me do this.”

Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 11.19.01 PM.png

The ever changing number of feral cats on my grandparents doorstep, and the few that end up coming inside and becoming part of the family. The Easter egg hunts, the games of hide and seek in the woods, the hours spent in front of the tv kicking each others’ butts at video games. The quiet moments with adventures in books, the never ending teasing between cousins, the hours upon hours of playing with homemade play dough or colouring. Christmas mornings, the opening of presents, the big family dinners.

Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 10.59.01 PM

There have been many summers, and even other parts of the years spent in good ol’ Guysborough county, specifically in Goshen and at Eight Island Lake. It would be hard not to post a little something from my explorations of Nova Scotia from this little piece of heaven. It’s where I spent a lot of my childhood, it’s where I got the worst sunburns of my life, it’s where I find peace and quiet with a good book on the dock and the sounds of the loons soothing me.

IMG_1651.PNG

It’s where most of the tears that are seen are from the laughter that is so deep. It’s where I get to enjoy a nice relaxing bath that is sometimes so hot, I nearly pass out afterwards. It’s where when I’m feeling weary and exhausted, I know I can catch a few extra z’s because the pace of life is so easy. It’s where I get to spend some Christmas’.

Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 11.04.32 PM

So here, enjoy some of the beauty that keeps me coming back for more. The place that has had me picking up my camera more often in the last couple months than in the last year. The place that has been stoking my creativity, and passion to continue to learn what I can do with a camera. The place where I can read until my heart is content, where I can write until I have no more words. This is my ultimate relaxation place (most of the time!)

IMG_9207
Grampy’s cabin, where I’ve spend many, many nights. Now I stay at my parents place, right next door.

IMG_9221
The lake, with the dock that has seen many sunburns, books read and sky high jumps into the cool water.

IMG_9705
When the morning fog starts lifting off the lake, there’s nothing quite as peaceful.

IMG_9719
The fog lifts as the sun starts to come up.

IMG_9229
The view from the grass

IMG_9715
The road traveled many, many times.

 

IMG_9878
This is the view from my bedroom at my parent’s cabin, and what a view it is.

IMG_9826
Sometimes golden hour is best viewed from the lake.

IMG_9183
Sometimes the sunsets are just mesmerizing, and ones like these have me in my rubber boots, standing in the lake, and squatting just so I can get these colours.

IMG_8907
Sometimes you just need the view from my grandparents place, just in Goshen.

IMG_8923
The peaking through trees and the calm of the water.

IMG_8967web
The stars viewed at night from the dock are breath taking. You don’t really get to see stars like these in the city.

IMG_8958
Like it’s unbelievable how many stars you see, and then you start to think about your significance in the world, and just how small you really are.