Category Event Photography

Make Portraits – Self/Love Market

You know what’s fun? Well besides hanging out having a picnic in perfect PNW weather at Point Defiance Park this afternoon? It’s logging in to Facebook and Instagram to see portraits that I made on Friday night being posted and used for profile photos!
I was one of the vendors at a Handmade PNW Market event called, “Self Love Market”. It featured female entrepreneurs and invited women to join us for an evening of shopping, networking and mingling.At first I wasn’t sure if I should really be there (hello gremlins of “I’m not hip enough”, “I’m not a very good networker, this stresses me out”, you can go away now). I didn’t have a set up and was having a hard time figuring out where to locate myself. Inside was too cramped and small, and out back wasn’t really where the flow of traffic was headed. But, that’s where I decided to land and am glad I followed my instinct, because look at that lighting that mama nature threw around for me!As the evening moved on, the light got prettier, and ladies started to wander out the back door to find me. I found a two spots that I liked the background of, and had such a fun time photographing each one of the women or groups of women who braved getting in front of my lens.This morning when I received this amazing note back from one of the ladies in response to getting her images, I knew I had made the right decision to be at the market,

“Thank you SO MUCH for these.

I’ve never had head shots or any kind of portraits professionally taken before. I had a tough week this past week, and wasn’t totally sure that I wanted to go to that self love market. The fact that I had no makeup or hair done other than the red lipstick I put on at the market, would make me not want to get a photo taken. I’m so glad I did because you made me feel special in that moment. Thank you so much for that.”

It is my hope that anyone and everyone who steps in front of my lens feels special and seen. 

Thank you to all of you who came out to the event and for everyone who helped make it such a special evening.

Event Details:

Wedding Wednesday – Dharma and Scott

Awhile back, when I still lived in Reno (hello, I am playing some SERIOUS blogging catch up here!), I had the pleasure of second shooting a wedding with Sam Pierson of Pierson Photo Company . Sam is a fellow former-Reno photographer who has also relocated out of state.  If you are in the Salt Lake City area and are looking for a super fun lady and amazing photographer, look her up. Sam is a hoot and has mad skills behind that camera of hers.
FocusInPhotography (10 of 588)But back to the wedding… To be honest, it wasn’t a “wedding”, wedding. It was, however, an amazing, quirky, delightful celebration of love between two people.  Scott and Dharma, your laughter, uniqueness, and power point presentation of love (yes, you read that right this is what happens when academics tie the knot) made my entire afternoon.
Also, they made their grand entrance in a canoe, to Edward Sharpe and the Magnatic Zeros, Home
FocusInPhotography (16 of 588)FIP (3 of 7)FocusInPhotography (11 of 588) FocusInPhotography (26 of 588)FocusInPhotography (28 of 536)FocusInPhotography (5 of 536)FocusInPhotography (17 of 536) FIP (1 of 5)-2FIP (7 of 7) FocusInPhotography (45 of 588) FIP (1 of 1)-3I loved how this couple made their wedding day their very own! When you are planning your day, remember, you don’t have to follow any trends on Pintrest or the latest bridal magazine. What makes your union special? Do that.
FocusInPhotography (23 of 536) Keep chasing that light,


Beautifully Traditional | Seattle, Washington Wedding

Kathy and David had a beautiful wedding day in Seattle, Washington.  I loved how they followed tradition and truly went out of their way to not see one another before the ceremony. I am sure she took his breath away as her father led her down the long aisle towards him that day.

2015-09-15_00052015-09-15_00032015-09-15_0001I loved the drama the old catholic church where the ceremony was held. It added to the excited energy and pre-wedding moments of the morning. This wedding had me thinking about how beautiful traditions are and how a wedding day can be simple and sophisticated with the traditions in place. It had me pondering how some of those things give so much more meaning to the day than any amount of flowers and cake could do. The spaces between the laughter, and the love filled that large church to the brim on this late summer morning.2015-09-15_0002Congrats again, Kathy and David!


Keep chasing that light,


A Few Favorites from 2014 | Focus In Photography

This year, wow. It’s been a big one. My family and I have had so many changes. Amazing changes, but big. We picked up and moved two states away from where my husband and I had lived for the majority of our lives. This meant a few things for me photographically, I had a whole new world to explore AND a new kind of light to learn. Harsh Nevada light is so incredibly different from the quiet light of the Pacific Northwest. I also had (have) a new market and set of clients. I am slowly networking and getting to know local Tacoma and Seattle photographers, as well as so many new people to photograph.

Today, I would like to share a few of my favorite images from the past year, these are just a handful of them.  Enjoy!


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Yoga (oh how I love photographing yogis and yoginis)

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Musicians, playing and playing

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Moments and Adventures

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 Film Photography

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And, finally, this beautiful skyline. I am so happy to call the Pacific Northwest home. I can’t wait to meet, photograph, and become even more a immersed in this community.

Let’s make something beautiful together in 2015!

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A Yoga Weekend at Camp Seymour | Washington Event Photography

A weekend away at camp. It was just like being a kid, only, we were thre to practice yoga all weekend. But there were some similarities to the old days of summer camp…FIP (3 of 85)There was time on the water.

FIP (54 of 85)Arts and crafts

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Exploring the outdoors, hiking, watching the sunset and searching for the stars in the dark.

FIP (65 of 85)There was playing with new friends in the grass.

FIP (77 of 85) FIP (48 of 85) FIP (41 of 85) FIP (35 of 85) FIP (25 of 85) FIP (81 of 85)But most of all, there was yoga, lots and lots of wonderful juicy, delicious yoga.

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A huge thank you to Rebeca, David and Amy for teaching, sharing and helping us explore our practice.

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Om shanti, shanti, om

Wedding Wednesday | Behind The Scenes

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 presetTwo weekends ago I found myself shooting at the most amazing place. I was asked to second shoot a wedding outside of Denver, Colorado.  As we drove into the venue, I looked at the other photographer with my mouth wide open, this is where I get to work today? Rolling hills, big red barns, a camel or two, not to mention a most beautiful and fun bride and groom.FIP (1 of 3)-3Have you ever wondered what your wedding photographer(s) do to get ready for your big day? I mean, other than feed a camel named Chewie and ooh-ahh at the big fluffy clouds in the sky. They set each other up in spots where they want to pose you and your amazing bridal party and take tests shots.

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FIP (1 of 2)-2Holly is pretty much beautiful. Strike that, she is hands down gorgeous. She should be in-front of the camera, not hiding behind it… but then again, she has a mean eye and mad camera skills, so her clients might not like reading that. FIP (2 of 2)-2Holly, it was SUCH an honor to join you at this absolutely stunning wedding. I can’t wait to get through all the images we took and see them together in one place. I couldn’t have asked for a better co-worker or a more perfect location (unless of course, we would have moved the party to the Ren-fest, per our sandwich artist’s suggestions). Let’s do it all again real soon, because darn it, it was awesome.

Wedding Wednesday |Lake Tahoe Wedding Photographer

Some of my favorite moments at weddings are during the reception. The vows have been shared, the kiss has sealed the deal, and now it’s time for the celebration! This particular wedding had such a great mix of young and old enjoying the day. As I watched these little dudes during the party, I couldn’t help but giggle. I could see their grownup versions hanging out and conspiring the next move on the dance floor.

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Keep chasing that light, Vanessa


*A huge thanks to Chris Werner for having me along for this amazing day at Lake Tahoe.

Tacoma Daffodil Parade | Street Photography


Last year I was pretty darn scared to ask a stranger if I could take their photo. But after doing several interviews for the Creative Coalition of Midtown  and shooting several weddings, the fear has turned to a creative adrenalin rush of sorts. I have learned how to approach people with my camera in hand. I no longer ask, but simply state, “I am going to take your photograph.”  And then go for it when the moment is there, not over thinking, just pressing down my shutter button to capture the moment.

Carl has been attending the Tacoma Daffodil Parade for the past 40 years. He is involved in his community and sits on the South Tacoma Neighborhood Committee. He was full of great advise about where to find local events that are free to the public.

On Saturday we headed to downtown Tacoma to watch the Daffodil Parade. People watching is always a favorite and I am quickly falling in love with the natural light and lack of shadows that the cloudy skies allow. These two factors combined, resulted in some really fun images of the event and the people attending the event.

I didn’t catch this man’s name, but he was passing out flyers about the Renaissance  Festival that happens each summer. He had such a great smile and his costume was fantastic!


Getting to know our city and the people who live, work and play here is such a great adventure. Tacoma, I sure am enjoying you so far!