Upper Valley Portrait Sessions

 

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Hey Upper valley friends! It’s that time of year again and I’ll be making my annual trip home to see family, enjoy the foliage and shoot some portrait sessions! This tradition started because a friend of mine who I grew up with in Hanover asks me up to photograph her son each year for his birthday and figured I’d make the best of it. Please feel free to send me an email if you’re interested or have questions about the sessions and in the mean time feel free to check out my website and enjoy a few of my favorite images from last year’s shoots! Look forward to seeing you in the Upper Valley!

 

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Amanda & Ryan 8.2.14

A big congrats to Ryan & Amanda for tying the knot! It was a bit rainy and overcast but that didn’t stop us from having an amazing day and getting great pictures.  Special thanks to Briggs Nursery for providing their space to us for portraits and to my 2nd shooter Laura Latimer for being amazing.

 

Sharon & Brett – 7.19.14

I hope you enjoy this little preview of Sharon & Brett’s wedding. My favorite part of the day was seeing all the awesome dance moves they had learned for their first dance as a married couple. The crowd went wild for it! A big congrats to these two! I’m honored to have been there to capture it. 

Lauren & Chris 7.12.14

This was a fun one! Everyone danced, everything was colorful, the ceremony was emotional and the weather was perfect! Enjoy this small look at their special day.

Rachel & Ben 6.28.14

Rachel and Ben got married on June 28, 2014. I knew from the start that I was meant to shoot this wedding. Everyone was relaxed and having a great time. The bride and her maids all wore red lipstick and red tortoise shell sunglasses. Oh… and red shoes! Any of you who’ve met me will know. Instead of hiring a caterer they ordered copious amounts of fried chicken and salad from Popeye’s and Whole Foods. They played their own iPod, baked their own cake and decorated the venue themselves. Lots of personal touches all around.  All in all the day was a great success and a ton of fun to photograph! Congrats to Rachel & Ben and special thanks to my 2nd shooter Brent Marianetti who is always a joy to work with.

Cunning Folk Cabaret – A Sneak Peek

Last night I had the honor of photographing Amy Kucharik‘s CD release party at the Oberon Theater. And what a crazy party it was! Belly dancing, burlesque, bands, aerialists and more! Here is a quick look at some of the amazingness! You can purchase Amy’s new album here (and I highly suggest you do) and “like” My Facebook page to see more images from this show coming soon!

Grilled Cheese for Layla

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I was recently visiting with my old friend Layla when she said “I’m loving the food photography but I’d like to see more savory foods. I need some grilled cheese or something!”

Later on that very evening I happened to notice that the lock screen image on her iPhone was a grilled cheese. So I knew what I needed to do.

Start with some quality bread and your favorite kind of cheese (cheddar!) Line one piece of bread with the cheese and the other with mustard or whatever condiment you like.

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Add a few slices of really crispy bacon and sliced fresh tomato. Some people are into chewy bacon. I get that. But when you bite the sandwich you want the bacon to break. You DON’T want the whole piece of bacon to come out with the first bite.

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lightly butter your bread then place in a frying pan on low heat. Flip it after a few minutes. LOW HEAT!!!! That part is important. You don’t want to burn the bread before the cheese even gets a chance to melt. It takes longer but it will be well worth the wait.

Then…

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Eat up!

 

Cilantro Lover’s Salad. 1 for now and 3 for later

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Jar salads are all the rage right now. They’re pretty much making pinterest explode. But you know what? They’re awesome! Yes, the salads really do stay fresh all week! No, the lettuce does not get soggy. I like to eat healthy but I can also be a bit lazy. I might end up eating crackers and hummus for dinner rather than put something together. The great thing about these make ahead jar salads is that you only have to do the work once. I take the laziness one step further by purchasing pre-washed lettuce, pre-shredded carrots and pre-cooked chicken strips. Yeah… I know that I can save a lot of money by grilling/shredding/cutting/washing it all myself.  And sometimes I do.  But sometimes motivation is lacking.

So here’s what I bought at Trader Joes

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1. cilantro salad dressing

2. grilled chicken strips

3. grape tomatoes

4. bagged romaine lettuce and spring mix

5. ripe avocado

6. frozen corn

7. fresh cilantro (this is optional but I really like cilantro!)

8. shredded carrots.

To assemble the salads in a jar you just need to start with the dressing and heavy ingredients and finish with the leafy greens. Pretty much the opposite order of how you’d assemble them on a plate.

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I got a little fancy and mixed my corn and tomatoes with a squeeze of lime and fresh chopped cilantro.  I used about a cup of corn (run under warm water in a colander to thaw) and a cup of chopped grape tomatoes.

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I put the avocado in the jar first then poured the dressing over it (about 1/4 cup). By immersing it in the dressing it doesn’t turn brown. Seriously this works. I’ve eaten one of these 7 days after making it and it was still perfect!

Then add the chicken, the corn/tomato mixture, the carrots, the romaine, and end with the spring mix!

When you’re ready to eat it just turn it over, shake the heck out of it, and dump it out onto a plate. You can eat it out of the jar if you want. But the reality of it is that you’ll eat lots of lettuce first and get dressing all over your hands. It’s worth putting it on a plate.

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100% Kauai coffee ice cream with chocolate coconut covered macadamia nuts

 

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I recently took a trip with with some friends to the Island of Kauai in Hawaii. As a lover of coffee and a maker of ice cream any of my friends could have predicted this result.

Lets start with what I brought home from the island. We visited the Kauai Coffee Plantation and took their walking tour. That’s where I bought the coffee. The chocolate covered coconut macadamia nuts came from a gift shop. But when I run out you better believe I’ll be ordering more from Amazon.com where they seem to sell all the different flavors.

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For the ice cream I used The Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream Base Recipe. I will never stop praising this recipe! I’ve adapted it into so many of my favorite flavors and creations and I’ve had great success! I scoopable, perfectly textured batch of ice cream every time. If you make ice cream at home you should drop everything you’re doing and buy her first book RIGHT NOW!

To make it coffee flavored I took the 2 cups of whole milk that the recipe called for and heated in a saucepan to ALMOST a boil. Then I removed it from the heat and steeped about 1/2 cup of coarsely ground coffee beans  (using a nut milk bag for easier clean up) in the hot milk for about 8 minutes. After removing the bag of coffee there was still a sandy texture from some of the finer coffee that got through so I poured it through a fine mesh sieve lined with a paper towel.  At this point it was no longer 2 full cups of milk so I put it in a measuring cup and topped it off with more whole milk then proceeded as usual with the base recipe.

After the ice cream was fully churned I added the macadamia nuts. I used about 1.5 cups full of them and chopped them in half. This is not an exact science. Add as little or as many as you like. I also threw in a small amount of regular macadamia nuts with sea salt.

YUM!

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And last but not least I took the photos! Lots of people ask me about my food-photo-set-up and are surprised to find out that it’s really not too fancy. So I’m including a behind-the-scenes look.

I use one of my Canon 580exii flashes with a small velcro soft box and pocket wizards so that the camera and flash “talk to each other” In this case I also had a very subtle orange gel on the light to create that sunset lighting.

The backdrop is a piece of fancy scrapbooking paper that I bought at the craft store (I can’t remember if it was Michaels or AC Moore but they’re pretty much the same) and the tabletop is a piece of cork board.

The flash is placed in the back right to make it look like the ice cream is being lit by the sun on that scrapbook paper. Also backlighting in food photography is just plain yummy. The white cardboard is there to bounce light from the flash back and prevent harsh shadows.

I used the Canon L series 100mm Macro lens which allows me to take really close up pictures with really shallow depth of field. And I did it all on my living room table! Below is a photo of my setup. Enjoy!

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Jessie & Pat’s summer camp wedding 7.21.12

Back in 2012 one of my best friends from high school got married and of course I got to be the photographer.  Aside from the ceremony, you wouldn’t have known it was wedding. It was just a great summer party. The kind that makes you think of 3 day weekends.  It took place at Kingsland Bay State Park  in Ferrisburgh, Vermont.  The food was all prepared by family and the desserts were all baked by Jessie herself. The ceremony lasted 5 minutes and ended with a firm handshake and a quick peck. After lunch Jessie and Pat jumped into the lake in their clothes and were joined by most of the guests for an hour or so of swimming. And later there was a piñata. Because it’s not really a party without one right? 

Also you may notice that some of the pictures are shot from the water. I put one of my cameras in a waterproof bag and floated around in a tube for a while. One of the guests managed to snap a few of me in action!

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