body { background: #ffffff; background-image: url(; background-position: center; background-repeat: no-repeat; background-attachment: fixed; background-size: cover; width: 100%; margin: 0; }

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Ha ha- I know this isn't original, but I've always wanted to do this!

OWP's 2nd Annual Thanksgiving Family...

Ladies and gentlemen... it is that time of year again! It is a time of family, friends, and giving thanks to all of the wonderful things we have. Last year, I asked that you write me and nominate a family in need. I was able to provide the winning family with photos that I hope they continue to cherish.

This year with times being so tough, I am confident that I will be able to help another family in need. If you know of an inspirational family (or your own family) that would greatly benefit from family photos but could otherwise not afford them, please write to me and tell me their story. I will be donating a studio session, along with a CD and print package.

Nominations are due by Thanksgiving Day- November 27th. The winning family will be notified shortly thereafter. I would love to schedule the shoot ASAP so that the family will receive their photos by Christmas. Please include the family's contact information.

Keep in mind that my choice will solely be based on your written nomination. So, if you just write, "I nominate the Johnson family because they can't afford photos," that doesn't really do much for me. I am inspired by who they are as people and why you think they deserve a personal photo session.

Thank you and I look forward to hearing from you!

Oh- I should add that the winning family must be able to have the photos taken at my studio in New Prague. So, this is limited to local families only, unless the family is able to make it to MN! The winning family also must be open to appearing on my blog.

A piece of history...

I shot this a few weeks ago after our family pics and hadn't posted it yet. As this crazy election time is coming to a close, I wanted to capture the boys by our yard sign. No matter what party you are voting for, I know that this election will go down in history and I thought this might be a cool picture for them to look back at.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Is it under $2.00 anywhere yet?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


For the third time, I was invited to shoot at Maternity of Mary St. Andrew's Catholic school in St. Paul. I am so blessed to be able to come in and capture these children while they're learning and having fun. Since the kids know me now, I've become somewhat of a novelty when I'm there. "Olivia, take a picture of me!" It's so cute! I have a special group of 5th grade girls that think I am the coolest! They ran up to me and gave me big hugs, hung out with me on the playground, and invited me to sit at their lunch table with them.

Principal Dan has graced the office with all of my photos from the past two visits. I cannot not tell you what an honor it is to see my photos displayed so proudly and how much they mean to the people that attend the school. My eyes literally tear up when I go in there and see how I am able to provide them with those mementos. Thanks Melissa, it is an honor to be a part of your school!

Kimberly and Stephen

I happened to see this clothesline there and quickly ran to my truck to see if I had my Polaroid with me... score! I had 4 shots left.

Kimberly and Stephen are both school teachers. Give it up for teachers... woo hoo! Kimberly had the idea to shoot at her uncle's house which used to belong to her great great grandfather. It was an awesome property with so many great nooks and crannies. They were such a fun couple and so naturally photogenic! I think we managed to snag the last nice day of the year because the day after it was so cold and actually snowed!

Thanks K&S, it was great spending the afternoon with you!

Angie and Chris

I've had the pleasure of shooting two engagement sessions recently! It seems as if it's been nothing but families lately so it was nice to switch it up a bit. Engagements are my favorite! It's so relaxed and I love getting to know my couples. I think this year was a big one for me in that I have really been paying attention to the kinds of sessions I like to shoot the most. Going into next year, I hope to switch it up a bit!

Angie and Chris just booked for next year and wanted to get a session in while the weather was still cooperating. It wasn't as warm as we would have liked, but Chris was great and Angie was such a trooper. I look forward to their wedding next year!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Watch Oprah- Monday, November 3rd!

My Oprah taping that I attended airs on Monday! Be advised that this is a sex therapy show and not suitable for children. I'm not sure if I made it on camera or not, but I am sitting in the first row of the bleacher seats, right next to the tunnel that she normally walks out of . I am sitting behind her, at her 8 0'clock position. I probably won't be visible unless they show the camera man panning out when they go to a commercial.

I'm excited to see it! The sexy makeover show that aired today was the morning taping that was before ours the day we went.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

More pics of my Dad...

I dug around in boxes and found more pictures of my Dad from our California trip.

My cousin in the Philippines emailed us these photos. My Dad had been planning on building a resort and always told us that we should come and stay there when he was done. Since we didn't keep in touch, I never knew that he had finished it. It looks really nice! Maybe someday we will go there and see it. I got my business sense from my Dad. He was always trying to think of ways to work for himself and prided himself with success. I remember when he bought J's Pizza in Blaine and we owned that for awhile.

My Mom had my cousin put some flowers on his casket from his grandchildren. It's so nice that even though he's halfway across the world we're still able to "be there" in a way. His funeral will be held on October 30th.
We also received photos of his body in his casket. It was very emotional to see, but it also brought a sense of closure.
I had a busy weekend with shoots so I haven't been able to process everything emotionally. I plan on taking the next couple of days off just to reflect and take this all in. As I was digging around for photos, it just disturbed me that I had such precious mementos in boxes in our garage. I really need to go through photos and make albums for my children to see. I remember going through photo albums as a child and my mom explaining people and events from the past to me. It's a shame that my life history is in boxes or on my computer. That is going to be one of my main priorities this winter during my slow season.

I appreciate all of your kind emails with thoughts and prayers. You're the best!

Friday, October 24, 2008

My Dad is dead.

As an adult, you know you will face the day when you lose your parents. I didn't think today was the day. My Dad and I were never all that close- my parents separated when I was young and my memories of him aren't the greatest. We've struggled to have any sort of real relationship throughout the years until 2003 when I thought things might be a little different. My sister, brother-in-law (sister's boyfriend at the time), my husband Andy, and I, along with Owen who was just a year old, traveled out to CA to visit him. Things went as well as expected and my son got meet his other grandpa. I was also newly pregnant with Aidan at the time so it was a pretty emotional visit.

Since then, our relationship went downhill even further after I found out he was remarried for the 3rd time since my Mom. I didn't know when I'd ever see him again and we didn't talk but he was alive. And now he's not. He's been living in the Philippines for awhile and haven't talked to him since he moved. I heard he suffered a heart attack at home and couldn't get to the hospital in time so he died on the way. I am in shock. I have cried. I have sat there blankly trying to process it all. It is just sad that we didn't have a better relationship and now he is gone. I don't know what else to say.

Owen saw me crying and then I heard him crying in the other room. Andy went to check on him and brought him out to me. He hates to see me so sad and he told me that he was crying because he thought about the baby dying. It makes me so sad that he is so deeply affected by my miscarriage. He's such a sweet, extraordinary kid. I would welcome any baby we were to ever have with loving arms, but even more so for Owen. He is an incredible big brother and his heart is so full of love.

I know that is an incredibly personal entry, but I need to write this as it is helping me process all of this. I also wanted to post a couple of photos that were just taken earlier this evening before a life changing event happened to me.

My awesome boys. We had so much fun tonight with these costumes. They were loving getting these pictures taken.

After the Halloween party, they were playing in the dark with flashlights so I started playing too. This only took three tries to perfect! In case you're wondering... I opened up my shutter for 30 seconds and clicked the flashlight on and off for each individual letter while writing the letters in mirror-image.

Life is so short. Remember to spend time with your loved ones and always let them know how you feel. You never know how much time you're going to have. My dad has no idea how wonderful my boys are or that I am running my own business as a photographer. I only hope that wherever he is now, he can see me and I hope that he's proud of me.

Eman, Xander, and Rami

Anna is a busy lady! I shot Eman last year and when Anna contacted me this year for updated photos, she had recently added twin boys to the family! Xander and Rami are fraternal twins and just nine weeks old. The twins were a handful but we did manage to get some shots before they had to be put down for a nap. Eman was a perfect little angel and did everything I asked him to! I hear he is an awesome big brother. I had a great time traveling to their beautiful home. It's always nice to switch things up once and awhile!

*Personal rant* Why does blogger keep changing? It's so irritating! I am going to have to get me a fancy new blog one of these days. :)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Why I do what I do!

Owen got his first grade pictures back yesterday. I wasn't expecting any miracles but this was pretty bad. This is why I love what I do. I get to capture children in their natural element with their natural expressions.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Fun links!

I was watching a late night show on Saturday that featured these fun web pages and I managed to write them down.

A "street artist" in London sets up various little scenes on the streets of London using little figurines, photographs them, and hopes that civilians will find them.
Little People

These are all photos of objects or scenes that look like faces. I'm hoping to find one and submit it to the site. These are really cool!
Faces in Places

Weird Cubicles

Strictly No Photography

Friday, October 17, 2008

Santa and Facebook!

I know it's a little early as it's not even Halloween yet, but I just wanted to announce that I will be offering pictures with Santa this year!

When: Saturday, November 29th
Where: The Main Artery- New Prague, MN
Time: 12- 2 pm
Cost: $15

We've just booked New Prague's local Santa Claus and he will be available for photos! You will receive one high-resolution file with full reproduction rights. That's right, you can print them off at the lab of your choice and pass them out to all of your family and friends.

Regardless of if you want a photo or not, Santa will be available to visit with children so bring them down for a free treat!

I will also be offering Facebook profile photo sessions that day. Everyone should have a professional and fun head shot of themselves for Facebook, Myspace, Blogger, and other networking sites. In this mini-session, you will receive three low-resolution photos of yourself ready to upload onto your favorite networking site.

Cost is $25 per person.

No appointments necessary- It's an open house event from 12-4 pm. Please note that Santa will only be available between 12- 2 pm.

Please answer the following poll, just so I have an idea of how many people are coming.