Viewing posts tagged Photographer

Saturday Night

Another Saturday Night logging video. I have to transcribe every word of my interviews or I can’t be certain I get the very best material in the piece

Happy Days!

Every day is a happy day with the kids are home!!! Every thing is funny! Everything! And mostly we laugh at the dogs!

No Blog Yesterday…

Yesterday was long day filled with the usual ups and downs. My favorite line of the day came from my assistant Anthony who showed up around dinner time. “You are really racking up victim’s rights pamphlets!” he said, as he looked at the paperwork Officer Escobedo left on my kitchen counter.

My second bike stolen in two weeks. Might not seem like a big deal to some, but I live for my bikes! I ride every day. I ride for fun. I ride for transportation. I ride just to think. The first one stolen was my favorite. I had it for 21 years. I moved it everywhere I moved and it moved me. I felt like my legs weren’t complete unless my feet were in the peddle cages. I had that bike locked up fairly well to a stair rail right outside my kitchen door. My yard is enclosed with electronic gates and this area is not easily visible from the street. I locked the second bike in the same place. (losing reader confidence – not smart I know) But this time I used a huge intimidating cable, the largest I could find. My brain told me that the robber had probably moved on and even if he didn’t “he would never want to deal with this size cable.” My brain also thinks everyone is a nice person deep down so “naturally the robber probably feels very badly that he stole my first bike. He won’t return to hurt me again, but I’ll lock the bike really good to block any temptation.” My self dialog is kindergarten.

I woke up happy yesterday morning. That’s usual for me. I am always an optimist in the morning. Every day has the potential to be a great day. I put on my yoga clothes, packed my bike trunk and strapped my mat to my back. I said good bye to the dogs and hopped out the kitchen door. I saw the super large cable lock in the driveway before I even noticed the bike missing.

The work day went fine. I shot some real estate photos. I had lunch with some great friends. I furthered my relationship with the Orlando Police Department who tried (I am sure only to please the bicycle nut that is me) to dust for finger prints on scrap metal left at the scene.

There was only one choice for dinner. Yup. Tijuana — the feel good place.

Then Anthony and I played around with light and filters for an upcoming shoot. I laughed so much when I saw this picture this morning. It looks like I could not keep my eyes open. I look exhausted. Modeling is my least favorite thing, but necessary for the job of making others look good. (Not even I could ask Anthony to model this one) The woman who will actually model for these shots will be perfect! She is a super talented and beautiful actress, singer and dancer. I thought it would be fun to show the before (me!) and the after (Blue Star). I am looking forward to the shoot.

I haven’t opened the victims right pamphlets. I hope they tell me that the best thing for me is a new bike or a massage or even a mani/pedi. I hope they don’t just tell me about the judicial process, prosecution and stuff. I’ll choose my self dialog this time. It’s usually way more optimistic!

Happy Birthday Up There in the Snow!

Happy Birthday to my son who turns 16 today!! One of downsides of having a child attend boarding school is that we can’t always be together on a birthday. Though, I do get to see pictures of him having a great time his friends online, and that makes me very happy!

One of his friends took the shot above this past fall. I love this picture because it shows him doing what he loves best — taking pictures. He is the sports photographer for the weekly school newspaper. He is as committed to that responsibility as he is to his academics and his own sports. It is pure joy for parents to watch their children pursue the things they love.

I tried as a parent to provide all the resources my two kids needed (needed not wanted!) but I stood out of the way whenever possible. Their homework, their school life, the activities they chose to focus on. That was all them. I was surprised by how many parents were laboring over homework, assessments or projects. I told the kids pretty early on (1st grade) that it is up to them to decide what type of student they would like to be, and what kind of life they would like to live.

I suppose there are as many approaches to parenting as there are children. I can only say this method worked for me. They made choices I couldn’t have dreamed up. I provide the food, clothes and plane tickets, then I sit back and enjoy them and their enthusiasm. They have pride in themselves and their decisions.

One of those decisions my son made was to apply to boarding school. Trust me when I tell you this is the LAST thing I would have planned. But he is getting an education and an experience that is life changing. He loves it. I am thrilled for him.

He didn’t fly home this weekend because he was concerned the weather might delay flights. Good call on his part. Another two feet of snow is falling on his school as we speak. I guess I can’t argue with that decision either.

I miss you son! Have the best birthday possible! Knowing you are smiling makes me incredibly happy!

In unrelated news, I spent the day on conference calls. Tomorrow I have two shoots. Yay!

A Single Empty Nest Sunday

Maybe Sundays are the most emblematic of the empty nest change of life.

Look at my Sunday (which is only half over as I write). I woke up late. That in itself is a major achievement and something I never thought could happen to me again. (big win!) But when I looked at my phone I realized I had only half an hour to get up, feed/walk the dogs, ride my bike to church, find a seat and be ready for service to begin. My good friend Larry Watchorn was to preach for the very first time. No time to make coffee.

Larry’s sermon was spot-on for what I needed to hear today. He used himself as an example. Like many of my friends just past 50, Larry is hearing his calling more clearly than ever before and has decided to become an ordained minister. He said he feels like Scrooge waking up and realizing there is still time!!! Those words gave me goose bumps. There is still time! It is a reminder we all need to hear. He talked about seeing signs recently (actual ones) saying “Do What You Love.” It was a sermon for all of us to live our truth. Larry has a wonderful professional career and is a seasoned marathon runner. With all the awards in his trophy case, I am certain his mother was never more proud than she was today. She ran to the alter to give Larry a huge tearful hug after his sermon (and while service was still going!) and then proceeded to hug half of the congregation on the way back to her seat. I was weeping as I witnessed.

After the service, I spoke with Joel Ogburn, the music director for Joy Metropolitan Community Church. He told me he recently left his successful career/business as a hair dresser to work for the church full time. I was looking at a man who looked 10 years younger than he had a month ago. His joy was all I needed to see to understand. Joel’s enthusiasm during the service had me raising my hand to purchase two pet calendars for 25 dollars when 1 pet calendar costs only 5 dollars. That’s what enthusiasm will do for you!

Two minutes later I phoned a girlfriend who is finding herself again after turning 50 and after divorce. I shared Larry’s sermon. Life is like that: good things have a ripple effect that never end.

I rode my bike home and pressed a quick pot of coffee (a girl can only hold out so long), and then jumped back on my bike to go to Yoga in the Park, a popular and well attended Sunday tradition here in Orlando where a group of great yoga instructors teach a donation based class. People bring their kids and dogs to their practice while drinking in the gorgeous blue skies, the aroma of flowers and the views of swans swimming in the reflective Lake Eola.

I thought about Larry’s words as I practiced today and wondered what I will do with my own realization “there is still time!” That brought me to think about Patricia Arquette’s character in “Boyhood.” I could write volumes praising Ms. Arquette’s performance, which is precisely how I can focus on the character of Olivia as if she were a real person! Olivia breaks down emotionally when her nest empties. She had made a life of providing for her children. Her life is suddenly as empty as her nest. I want the movie to go on a little longer. I want Olivia to understand “There is Still Time!” and then I want her to “Do What You Love!”

I ate lunch – you guessed it – at Tijuana Flats! That makes the day pretty perfect, and played right into today’s theme. I can do whatever I want!! I’ll head to the bike store this afternoon to add a few accessories on my bikes. I may also do some yard work. I’ll leave work work for tomorrow and enjoy this single empty nest Sunday doing what I love. (Camera in hand!)

Tiger Mike

Here are a couple of shots of Tiger Mike at LSU. I don’t like seeing him cooped up at all, but he certainly is a beautiful creature.

Home again!

The best part about travel is how much you appreciate coming home! Straight from the airport, where did I go? If you know me well, that’s not a tough question. My fav!!

SEC Gymnastics

At Georgia vs. LSU gymnastics meet in Baton Rouge. Tiger Mike roams in his habitat right outside. Not sure how I feel about that. (Yes I am sure ?.) But he sure is gorgeous.


Business Trip

It occurs to me that today is my first “business trip” in almost 20 years. The last one I was 5 months pregnant with my daughter who is 19. Her birth grounded me — at least as far as work was concerned.

It may not seem all that significant except when you consider I traveled nonstop for a decade straight covering Wide World of Sports — and any kind of sport in between — often visiting two cities in a week. I didn’t know how to be at home.

Many memories came flooding back the minute I began yukking it up with the ESPN travel department — joking, reminiscing and (maybe) gossiping with Andrea (she is the best!!!). And then while meeting other people traveling for business in the airport and learning all about jobs I had no idea existed!! (Later I find out that they Facebook friend requested me [I can make a verb out of anything]. That’s a new thing that didn’t happen 20 years ago.)

I made a concerted effort to go old school today – ignoring the inflight wifi, leaving iPad  at home, and just shutting down completely during the flights. I remember flying being my greatest chance for rest and recovery.

I have my camera so that hasn’t changed!

My daughter is boarding a flight to LA today. Though she hasn’t lived home for 18 months, I still feel this is a big deal. While it may seem a random and sudden topic change, it also feels significant that while she flies further and further from the nest I should also be on a plane traveling to an old space occupied by a much younger me.

Empty Nester Goes Back to Work

Other than my early career, I spent the bulk of my adult life standing behind a kitchen counter. Don’t hear me complaining. I was lucky. I got to stay at home with my kids. I always considered that a privilege. I love to cook. I cooked all the time as the kids were growing and I still do whenever I get the chance. Eighteen months ago, my life changed drastically. My nest emptied four years earlier than I expected. A long term relationship ended. My dad had a stroke and became paralyzed. So I sold my house and moved to be near my parents. I started networking and got back to work. I was a television producer, director, associate director in my early career. I loved it. But I wasn’t looking to repeat. I am older now. I live down south now. I started producing videos for large companies and non-profits. I found a lot of joy working on a smaller and more intimate scale. But when I was asked to shoot head shots and portraits, I’d respond “I am not a photographer.” (Secretly I was. I just had never charged for it.) That has all changed too. The best part of life for me is letting it unfold. Over-planning was never a thing for me. I couldn’t have predicted a year ago that this particular day would have me editing photos, researching for an online education project launch, and “attending” an online meeting (Love those! I stayed in my sweats) — or that tomorrow I’d be flying to Baton Rouge for a show. Work is a tremendous blessing to an empty nester single mom. BUT truth be told, I often take my computer and camera equipment out of my office and into the kitchen because that counter is still my comfort zone!! And I’m happy as a clam to sneak a little cooking in too!!