Thursday, April 29, 2010

ahhhh.....parenthood......x2

Ever seen an absolutely beautiful expecting mother of twins so at peace with the world, so relaxed, so okay with whatever God brings her way, that she can lie down and simply bathe in the warm sunlight on a fresh, spring day?

No? Never? Well, you have now. :)





And with twins. Can you believe it? Kristi makes it look somehow too easy.
I think her husband Gabe was even getting a little sleepy. She just looked so cozy and comfortable...


Doodlebugs & Dinosaurs: Class of 2010

We have some rascally, fun next door neighbors.  Here they are in all their glory. Parents, click the pic to see them more up-close and personal.  You can purchase the image in 10x20 or 5x10.

Strawberry-Tough!

She was strutting around yesterday, giving me this 'wanna-piece-of-me' look, doing this thing with her lips that reminded me of Elvis, and wrinkling her nose up so she could make her eyes seem more steely and bad...and I couldn't figure out where the whole tough-girl act was coming from....until she spun around, flexed her pipes and showed off her Strawberry Tattoo!
















 

It was scary-tough. made me shake in my boots. I felt like there should have been some kind of bluesy harmonica playing in the background for effect.  She couldn't resist smiling by the time I got my camera out, but you still get the idea.
:)

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Amy's Family

Here's some favorites from Amy's session, we had some very natural and creative poses that the boys thought up themselves, with no help.






There was even enough time left over, just for mom and dad.
It's not the easiest thing to do, shifting gears from kid-wranglers to who mommy and daddy were before they were mommy and daddy - I mean - you can just about burn up the clutch. We just have to take what moments we're given, and make the most of them. Look at these two. Even though dad's a little shy of the camera, the thermostat in my studio went up a few degrees. :)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Networked Afterlife

We need to remember that we're alive today. Right now. There are decisions that need to be made that will determine your eternity. Your real-life eternity. I know it's hard to deal with, but the truth is that we don't get to magically live on through some kind of online presence. We want to believe this distorted view that all roads lead to angels and facebook is forever... because living that lie is easier than swallowing the truth. Facebook is nothing more than little bits of information, ones and zeros. We'll never really live in the illusion of this online, networked eternity.



The Networked Afterlife

i won't live on facebook when I die.
you won't find me on a myspace page.
won't be the angel in the sky
playing a harp on a cloudy stage.

my friend, make no mistake
we all will find our end
the only choice now left to make
will be where you have them send your soul....

so where do you wanna go?
cause it ain't all just a show.
I can tell you that I know,
so where do you wanna go?

looking at the obits on another cloudy day
seeing that the people think
we're all gonna find our way.
where did this new religion come from?
how did it come to be?
no more justice, no more law
just a happy fantasy.

'Smile my friend, I miss you!
Rock on and see you soon!
I know you're watching over me,
singing a happy tune!'

ain't nobody gonna live in hell.
the devil don't have no face.
when we die we all grow wings
and fly around in space.

win or lose, make no mistake
the devil wants to be your friend.
makes you think it's all just fake
and He gets you in the end.

so where do you wanna go?
cause it ain't all just a show.
I can tell you that I know,
so where do you wanna go?

do you wanna wake up on fire?
do you wanna find out too late?
you get your hearts desire
once they close the gate.

I won't be watching Youtube.
I just won't be that bored.
I'll be up with Jesus
because in life He was my Lord.

so where do you wanna go?
cause it ain't all just a show.
I can tell you that I know,
so where do you wanna go?

It won't matter if my Blog gets hits
because I won't live online.
no magic floating megabits,
no fancy web design.

wake up and see the lie.
open your eyes while you still can!
don't hold your breath for my reply,
i'm not there my friend.

Dan Elliott
4.27.10






Friday, April 23, 2010

Todd & Jill's Wedding

Getting to to know Todd and Jill has been a real blessing. Since the very first time we've talked, Jill has been a breath of fresh air. She is a natural-born encourager. Ever been around someone like that? Talk about refreshing. You can't be down, can't be exhausted, can't be anything but in a good mood when you know someone is lifting you up, and for all the right reasons. It puts a little extra bounce in your step, when people just take the time to say something nice, yet genuine. If only we all put that into practice.

Todd's in the public eye, working out the details in our legislature. What better woman to have standing with you than a wife who loves to keep you strong in spirit. I can tell you from my own experience, that my wife is that kind of girl, and that is one of her qualities that is the most endearing to me. It just makes you want to be a better man. 

The day started with Angelique at Platinum Imagination, doing her magic with her amazing talent in hair and makeup. By the time she finished, Jill was radiant, getting more and more excited to see her guy (note one of my favorite shots, the text message conversation she was having with Todd as Angelique was putting on the final touches....I loved seeing in print the word that most described what she was feeling at that very moment in her day....."Yay!!!!")



Todd was across the church, getting help from his sis to put on those pesky tux accessories, and helping the family bring in the snacks.



It was a chilly day, but beautiful and filled with smiles and tears. The ceremony was a time of worship which I think is always an outstanding way to begin a marriage.  The speeches at the end of the night were genuine because the relationships are genuine, and the dancing and music from the River Rats dueling pianos kept everyone hopping so much even the kids were into it.
Here are some of my favorite images from the story of their day:

Monday, April 12, 2010

You Know, It's just that Important

We had lunch today with a fellow photographer in the business, and while rehashing our discussion, something burdened my heart enough to write to him. After I sent this note to him, I've decided I'm also going to send the meat of that letter out to any and all of you, because you know, it's just that important....

I feel it would be a disservice to you to not speak to you about where I stand with my business. I know where you're at with your passion in your studio, and I remember what it was like when I first came home, and how driven I was to carve out a place, provide for my family, and prove it to be good career move.

Honestly I have to tell you that I'm just in a very different place these days in regards to my perspective. Having come back from Haiti, and seeing the fallout from such an extreme loss of life, and now with the ministry of our band Rough Lumber, just last night speaking to 35 boys about Jesus, boys who come from abuse and neglect and poor decisions, I'm finding out that our salvation is crucial. Our time here is so very valuable.
The other 3 guys in my band are today burying a very close friend and coworker. He lived life and was loving every second, but was unexpectedly shot to death in his sleep a few nights ago.
He hadn't made a decision about Christ either, and his time was cut very short. They don't know if he was ready. And the pain of knowing that is near unbearable.
I know you are uncertain of your faith, but I would be grossly dishonest with you if I even began to pretend that I didn't hold that to a higher value than the welfare or success of your business.
I am increasingly unable to ignore or assume the integrity of the salvation of any individual in front of me. It's just too important anymore, and the rest is just passing away. My business strategy is very simple and not at all conventional, which is just my way of being completely honest with you when I say my business model is simply to trust in Christ. I know some people may not find that agreeable, so it's important to be on the table as much as possible.
My studio is currently how the Lord provides for me and my family, as well as affording time and a space for us to have a ministry for Jesus.
There is scripture on the floors of my studio, and my strategy is only to be as truthful as I can be about Him. I'm not perfect, I'm just as much a sinner as any man, but I believe Jesus hung on that cross, died and rose again for me, to pay for those sins, and it's remiss of me not to share that at the outset of any relationship. The importance of having a personal relationship with Him is over and above all else.

If you ever want to talk about Christ, if you ever have questions, I'd be happy to talk with you.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Soon to be Arriving...




I have to say I thought this soon-to-be mom was absolutely breath taking.

Wow.
I couldn't figure it out during the shoot, but I just knew Tiffany reminded me of someone famous.  Then as I was sifting through the images, it dawned on me.  One quick internet search to pull up a picture to compare, and there it was...Kari agreed.
Renee Russo!


Yes.
And can you believe she's never heard that before?



Chad was great to work with.  I can tell he's looking forward to this new chapter in life.  He smiles in love, every time he looks down at the little one still hidden away, and I can see in his eyes he wants to provide stability for his family. 

What better place for a dad to start? 
I remember being in his shoes.  I remember being resolute to tackle the world, do whatever it takes, to take care of my new family. 

I think Chad's determination to be there for his family is part of the reason that Tiffany smiles so much.