Santa Claus

I recently spent a couple of hours [three to be exact] in the company of a Santa Claus. Fortunately, he was a kind man and quite genuine in his Santa duties. My official task was to photograph said Santa with anyone who wanted to have his or her picture taken with Jolly Old St. Nicholas. Fortunately, most of said people were over the age of 18. While editing a couple thousand images [2,030 to be exact], I considered the Santa experience and jotted down a couple of lessons [eight to be exact].

1] You are never too old to ask for a pony, puppy or peace on Earth.
2] Cover your knees. The importance of a good-fitting suit [or other attire] cannot be overstated.
3] Don’t be afraid to ask a friend [or friends] to come along. Life isn’t as scary with your BFF along for the ride.
4] Make wishes big and small.
5] If someone doesn’t want to talk to you, sit next to you or have a photograph taken with you, don’t take it personally.
6] Embrace new friends, but also remember to hug the old ones.
7] Be patient. Not everything can happen all at once.
8] Be goofy. If Santa can walk around in a funny red suit with fluffy white trim, well, you get the idea… .

I’m certain many more lessons could be added to this list, but Christmas is fast approaching and there is still work to be done.

Happy holidays to you and those you love. – Ann

Fargo Senior Photographer

It’s funny how connections work. You meet Person A who knows Person B and suddenly you are having coffee with Person C and photographing Person D’s wedding. Oh, and Person E, who went to high school with Person A, needs photography services for her marketing materials.

A more visually interesting example would be McKenna [pictured above and below] who just happens to be the BFF [that’s best friend forever] of Callie, who I photographed a couple months back. You can see Callie’s photographs and learn more about her portrait session here.

I’m pretty sure McKenna and I wouldn’t have met if I wouldn’t have already photographed Callie. McKenna was admittedly putting off having her senior pictures created. She liked Callie’s photographs and what Callie had to say about the experience. So, we connected and spent a lovely evening with spectacular light at a nature center near Buffalo River State Park. What made the session extra fun was having Callie [pictured with McKenna below] help out.

I don’t know about you, but I’ll take a referral over an advertisement in the yellow pages [or seemingly random Google search] any day. – Ann

P.S. Yes, McKenna is holding a snake in one of the photographs. She assured us that it was a common and very harmless Gardner snake.

Fargo Senior Photographer

Fargo Senior Photographer

Fargo Senior Photographer

Fargo Senior Photographer

Fargo Senior Photographer

Fargo Senior Photographer

Fargo Senior Photographer

Fargo Senior Photographer

 

Bras On Broadway Preview

The 6th annual Bras On Broadway is just around the corner. That means a couple of things.

First, I have one week [as in seven days] to deliver my framed contribution to this very fabulous and important art auction. [The big event is set for Thursday, Oct. 27, but all art is due next week.] Back to that deadline in a moment.

Secondly [and more importantly], tickets [$75 per person] are now available for purchase online. There are lots of ways to get involved and help raise money, support and awareness for breast cancer and those impacted by it. Heaps of information [and a few fun photographs from past events] are online here. [An online gallery of my photographs from the 2010 event is available for viewing here.]

Now, about the submission deadline and personal predicament. This year marks my second time contributing a non-wearable piece of art for auction. I had big plans for last year’s piece, but they didn’t pan out exactly as planned. You can read the more detailed story about the creation of “You Make My Heart Sink” here.

My intention for this year’s auction was to plan ahead so I wouldn’t be left scrambling. Yet, here I am scrambling and asking for help. I spent the past couple of days on the road for an editorial assignment. Before leaving town I gave myself the task of photographing any objects, places or situations that resembled the female breast. I figure the found object approach worked last year so why not try repeating it. Contributing artists [those working with the non-wearable form] aren’t bound to contribute a piece that connects with the whole breast or bra theme. However, I really appreciate the process of creating something new that deals with a predetermined set of parameters.

So, here are three photographs – all were created over the past 48 hours – for your consideration. I’m intending to select one of these images [matted and framed, of course] for the Bras On Broadway art auction. The question now is which one should I pick? In the interest of time [mine and yours], let’s call them A [an artful brick wall], B [object in field] and C [red circles with wire]. I picked up a pair of acorns to photograph as option D. Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.

Thanks for your help. – Ann

P.S. A list of participating artists is available online here. I’m reasonably certain that most of the photographs on the page were created by yours truly at last year’s event.

Bras On Broadway Preview

Bras On Broadway Preview

FirstDayofSchool

Little M., who really isn’t so little anymore, started kindergarten this week. He assured me that I don’t need to worry about him. Well, I’m his mom so I’m bound to worry – at least a bit. We were a touch rushed that morning, but I wanted to be sure to create at least one photograph of M. in a location that we can easily repeat in future years.

Anyway, here’s to the new school year and a holiday weekend. Enjoy! – Ann

 

Rep. Rick Berg's Town Hall Meeting In Fargo, North Dakota

North Dakota Republican Rep. Rick Berg held his sixth town hall meeting in recent weeks. Last night’s gathering, which attracted more than 100 folk, was at Longfellow Elementary School in north Fargo.

I stopped in for a bit. The meeting was – sort of – on the way to my office from another self assignment. I was curious to see how many people turned out and what they had to say [which was a lot and with strong opinion]. And, if I’m going to be honest with myself and you, I absolutely love photographing people in this community. It’s something I wish I could do more often.

The lack of a market, media outlet and what feels to me to be a general lack of interest in photographs of everyday people from this part of the world bothers me. Yes, we can count on national coverage for each and every flood event, but the aftermath draws little attention. [Really, what is going on in Minot?!] Oh, and yes we can bank on a few articles about western North Dakota’s oil boom and how we’re all so much better off economically than the rest of the country. I’d ask forgiveness for my frustration, but I continue to miss some pieces of my former life as a newspaper photographer/reporter.

Anyway, my commitment to myself – and to you since you are still reading – is to pursue more self assignments on a consistent basis. I’m open to ideas and requests.

Now, back to the photographs from last night. Enjoy! – Ann

Rep. Rick Berg's Town Hall Meeting In Fargo, North Dakota

Rep. Rick Berg's Town Hall Meeting In Fargo, North Dakota

Rep. Rick Berg's Town Hall Meeting In Fargo, North Dakota

Rep. Rick Berg's Town Hall Meeting In Fargo, North Dakota

Rep. Rick Berg's Town Hall Meeting In Fargo, North Dakota

Rep. Rick Berg's Town Hall Meeting In Fargo, North Dakota