Beautiful City, Beautiful Life

So I went on more than one photoshoot this past weekend. I shared the skyline pictures I took in a separate post because I wanted to focus on my improvement as a photographer over the last few months. But I also went downtown to wander around before the sun got low enough and took some photos of some interesting parts of downtown Raleigh. They’re not my favorites, but wandering around by myself trying to look like I knew what I was doing was a baby step outside of my comfort zone and into the terrifying world of street photography – something I’m very interested in, but haven’t been brave enough for yet. I also woke up at the crack of dawn the next morning (after 9 glorious hours of sleep) and went to Lake Lynn – my favorite trail to run – to take sunrise pictures. It was early, and freezing, and I had to walk a long way to get to the location I wanted to shoot from, so this was also a bit out of my comfort zone.

This segways perfectly into a theme for this post – trying new things. I am all about trying new things this year. Some more adventurous than others. Some aren’t even new, I’m just being more spontaneous and saying yes to pretty much any opportunity that comes my way. So in between all the photographs, I’ll share some unrelated stories of things I’ve experienced so far.

1) I rented a party bus for me and 5 friends to take us downtown for my birthday. It was legit.


2) I booked a trip to Greece for the summer. I’ll be travelling with a group of strangers in my age group for 11 days.


3) I ate a burger. Yea…I had never eaten a burger. Don’t ask me why. Because this burger I had was magnificent.


4) I went on lots of casual dates. This was very new, mainly because I had been in a relationship since I was 19. Casual dating didn’t really exist in high school. This was also probably one of the less enjoyable experiences, but still had it’s place in my fun little world.


5) I ate sushi. Foreal. I have never been much of a seafood fan so this was a huge fucking deal. Especially because I loved it.


6) I successfully cooked Indian food. I love Indian food, but no one is ever like “hey let’s get Indian food”. It’s just not a common thing for some reason. So I cooked it myself. And it was delicious.

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7) I agreed to go to Vegas this summer for a Bachelorette party. Never been. I’m sure it will be a blast.

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All of this and it’s only February! Much more excitement to come…


Now and Then: The Raleigh Skyline

So in June, I ventured out to try photographing light trails against the Raleigh skyline. I liked the results but didn’t love them. I went back downtown last night and tried again from the same spot and I think I got some better results this time (same gear and everything, too). Let’s have a look, shall we?

June 2014:


January 2015:


June 2014:


January 2015:


June 2014:


January 2015:


I think the key was that I stuck around for a little longer after sunset (hence the pictures being darker). Also, I used a 2 second timer so I wasn’t shaking the camera when I pressed the shutter button. Some of the June pictures were not as sharp as they could have been. I think that last picture from June I actually like better than the one from last night that I compared it to, but other than that I like the results I got last night. It was REALLY cold though! I probably could have been a bit more focused and patient if it had been warmer and my hands weren’t numb. :p

‘Tis the Season for Beautiful Pictures

I love Christmas time. Even before I got into photography I loved taking pictures of everything. From the decorations to the happy faces, to the mess in the living room after unwrapping presents. I think the holiday makes for some great kodak moments. So I’m going to share them with you. This being my first Christmas with my Canon, I definitely had some fun with it.

Lights and decorations:


Lounging around by the tree (with wine most nights):




The trees themselves. One is mine, one is in the front window of my parents house. It’s the fake one though…we have a real one that the presents go under

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My mom’s beautiful table setting:

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Party time:

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Baking cookies

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Unwrapping said presents:

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Ryan wearing a bow in his hair


The mess in the living room after unwrapping presents

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French toast and mimosas for breakfast this morning


October Original

Time for Fair Pics! The fair was so much fun to photograph. I went twice so I could do day and night. It’s a world of difference between the two. Morning is calm and there are lots of families with small children walking around. Nighttime is crazy – lines are long, everything is lit up. I think I did a pretty decent job capturing both.

The Food:

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The Rides:

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The Games:

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The Ferris Wheel (and the view from it)

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And This Picture:


So much fun!

How to Photograph a Yardsale

Disclaimer: The title of this post is supposed to be ironic. Who really needs a how to on photographing yard sales? Also, I’m no expert on yardsalography. I’m as good at it as I am at making up words.

On a more serious note, I think taking these photos and writing about them is a helpful exercise. I took a mundane event like a yard sale, picked out a few key defining characteristics of it and tried to capture those characteristics as creatively/interestingly as possible. I try to do this with a lot of everyday events/happenings. It really helps you see more artistically.

With that being said, here is how I captured the yard sale I helped my dad with this weekend.

1. The Time of Day

Yard sales almost exclusively happen at the crack of dawn. So I thought one of the key characteristics was that early morning sunlight.

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2. The Details

The little price stickers. The pocket change. The whole point of doing a yardsale.





3. The Things I Paid Attention to During Lulls

For the sake of randomness and not writing an entirely different post with these pictures…I photographed some flowers/Bees that were in front of the house because being the seller at a yard sale is not that exciting.

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Summer’s Last Hoorah?

It’s almost my favorite time of year. The mornings are starting to feel cooler, the air smells fresher, yellow school buses are abundant in rush hour traffic…that’s right it’s almost FALL! I’ve pinned a hundred pumpkin-flavored recipes and am just about ready to slip on some leggings and boots. This being said, I don’t like to wish away the seasons because it really feels like yesterday that I was seriously looking forward to some beach-going, poolside-sitting, summer days. So this post will be a tribute to summer with pictures of Flowers and Lake Lynn, which I visited on Saturday evening at sunset. I’m sure I will take more pictures of the lake when the leaves change, but there’s still beauty in summer foliage too. 🙂

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And of course it’s not summer without a bowl of watermelon.


Weekend Recap

So I would have ideally wrote this last night. But I ran out of time and motivation. I am JUST about finished getting all settled into my new place. I have been unpacking/cleaning/organizing on a daily basis for the last 2 weeks. My couch and recliner are coming Thursday so once they’re here and I fix a few minor things I’ll be DONE with the craziness and I can enjoy more time spent doing my favorite things.

Like making pancakes and drinking wine, which is my way of saying that’s what I did this weekend. Here ya go:

Friday Night: Movie night with Bryan during which I drank a bottle of wine. (Hey the bottle said “Relax” on it! I was just following directions)

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Saturday morning: I woke up and spent an hour making these babies. Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes – with chocolate chips because I like chocolate. Bryan thought there were too many chocolate chips in them which there probably were.But to me they were perfect. I put some vanilla greek yogurt inbetween two and made a pancake sandwich. It was heaven in my mouth. Also eating it in bed made it 10x better.

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And just because it was rainy and gross this weekend, I made sure I practiced using my camera and attempted some pretty rain pictures. Not the greatest but they make the rain prettier to look at.

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Sunday: We were GOING to watch more movies and make a few different homemade popcorn recipes to go along with it. But we watched one movie, made one batch of popcorn (that we put garlic salt and parmesean cheese on…it was yummy), and then fell asleep at 4pm. And then we were too lame to start another movie. We shall attempt this another day and I’ll have pictures of ALL the different popcorns. (I had big plans for the popcorn, guys). Just wait for it.

Oh andsince this post has already gotten pretty random (like most of them do), I’ll throw this in here. I did my first scrapbook page in my new craft room! It felt strange not being with my mom, and I found I was lacking a few necessities but it came together pretty well!