Pictured Rocks in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula

Pictured Rocks in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula

Why yes, I am a portrait photographer but I starting out being a nature photographer and I sometimes (ok, kinda often) I return to nature photography.  As my kids get older I have more opportunities to take nature photographs while on vacation.  If you don’t know me personally I’m a huge fan of Michigan.  I love to share images with those that love the same places, or introduce others to places yet unseen in their own state or beyond their state.  I have updated my pArt of Life Photography nature gallery with a lot more images and would love to share a few here as well.  All of my nature and macro images are available for sale on a variety of products; canvas, mounted prints, metal prints, wood block prints, etc.  Please contact me at info@partoflifephotography.com for details.  Thank you!

These images were taken last year on Pictured Rocks cruise.  I’m looking forward to returning and doing more hikes along this area.  Last summer we also spent the day further along this shore at Hurricane Beach – what a great spot complete with a small area of shipwreck remains just off the beach.  This year I’m looking forward to a week in the Keweenaw Peninsula.  I’m bringing along my macro and wide angle lenses for sure.  I’m also thinking of renting a fisheye lens for the trip.

Have you seen my 4th of July fireworks images from Frankfort, Michigan?

by pArt of Life Photography LLC

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Picture Rocks photo by pArt of Life Photography

Macro photography – bubbles!!

Macro photography – bubbles!!

It was -9 this morning when I took my boys to the bus stop.  My brain wasn’t clicking yet but it wasn’t long until I started thinking that it might be the last good morning for frozen bubbles.  Heading out into the bitter cold (for the second time) is one way to wake up in the morning.  I grabbed my bubble solution and my macro lens.  I just got it, but boy I’m giving that lens a workout!  I have the 100mm 2.8 IS L by Canon so it’s great for portraits as well as objects.  Time for some more macro photography!

My first trip out was comical.  First I tried blowing bubbles with my shutter finger – not advisable as it leads to a sticky camera.  I tossed my last glove to blow bubbles with my left hand and in my rush to shoot I’d drop the bubble wand into the deep snow.  Luckily it would leave a trail of blue bubble solution.  The bubbles worked great today so I was glad after my first few attempts failed.  I knew I did not have a full recipe for success though as the sun was blocked by clouds so my images lacked a lot of lustre.  I was on the phone an hour later and noticed the sun was shining and the snow was sparkling.  Time to head out again.  This time the bubbles would bust when they met the snow.  I did get some shots of the bubbles floating away though.  I was glad to see my bubbles from earlier were still there basking in the sun!  Yes, these things do excite me!!  Now that I captured snow and a few great snowflakes and bubbles Winter now has my permission to leave Michigan.  Have you seen my snowflake macro photo at the end of my snow blog post?  I’m ready for Spring photo sessions!  Of course snow portrait and studio sessions are still great until Spring makes its way here.

Feel free to share this link with anyone that may be interested.  You can use the handy little banner buttons below.  I’d love for you to leave a comment here as well.  Thanks!

frozen bubblefrozen bubble frozen bubble frozen bubble bubble in snowfrozen bubble

 macro photography bubble

Flowers – February 10 on 10

Flowers – February 10 on 10

I’m back!  Here’s is my second  “10 on 10” blog post for 2014.  This is for a project I’m undertaking with some fellow photographers.  We’re shooting one day of the month with this project in mind.  We select our favorite ten images from that single day and create a blog post.  I’m excited to see what pops into my head for each month’s endeavor.  Last month, it was Snow!  How fitting for January in Michigan, eh?  We still have that same snow on the ground here but it’s been buried in even more snow.  That doesn’t always happen in Michigan any more, but this winter is a doozy!

Anyway,  if you are still with me…  I’m primarily a portrait photographer but among many other things on my to-do list this year I want to take time to photograph different things for myself.  I purchased a new macro lens to make this even more fun.  Last month and this month all the images for this project have been taken with my macro lens.  Macro photography took a bit more time to adapt to than I thought.  I brought out my tripod for some of these images.  I’m inspired to use this lens a lot more to improve my skills and use it more for portrait photography.  I used in a recent newborn photo session and loved the results.  This month, even though snow still abounds, I turned my interest to flowers.  Thanks to Costco I found a lovely bunch of flowers to help me in this month’s quest.  Now I’m ready for more fresh flowers.  Bring on Spring!

Check out Valena David Photography’s “10 on 10” images!  If you follow all the links you will come full circle back to my blog.

You’ll be back next month to check out my “10 on 10”, right?  I’ve got some great ideas in store.  I’d love to hear your thoughts on this months images so feel free to comment below.  Thanks!!

 

 

 

Snow!  My 10 on 10…

Snow! My 10 on 10…

It’s the 10th of January, 2014!  I’m participating in a few new photography projects this year.  On the 10th of the month I’ll post 10 photos and share a link to a fellow photographer’s blog as well.  This month my theme is snow.  It’s kind of hard to ignore when you are surrounded by it.  Luckily I like snow, except in March and April!  But for now bring it on!  I was shooting with my new Canon macro lens.  I’ve got a lot of learning to do with this lens.  In addition to portrait photography I really enjoy nature photography so I hope you’ll indulge me in some shares with subjects other than people.  You can see more of my nature photography here.  I still have a lot more of my landscape photography to add there, including some snow Lake Michigan shoreline images.  I hope you enjoy your view today.  I’d love to hear your comments.

I replaced the last macro shot with one I took today.  I’m getting better at it!!

 

snowflake macro by pArt of Life Photography LLC

Snowflake macro photography

Here is a link to Faith Doggett’s awesome bubble photos.

Going Local with Michigan-made products

Going Local with Michigan-made products

And I didn’t say ‘loco’, although some days that is the case!  I’m talking about supporting local businesses and I need your help!  I’ve been thinking of the economy and small businesses and I want to step up what I’m doing to help.  I try to shop locally for props.  I was sad when 4th Street Mercantile and Swan Creek Candle went out of business in Rochester as I had bought some props at both of these places.  My logo is from a local design company.  I’m also getting more samples from a Michigan professional photo lab and may switch to them.  Speaking of local I have a cherry crate from Elk Rapids that needs a baby in it soon. And I’m working with a couple Michigan knitters/crocheters.  Any way, here’s where you come in to play…  I need more suggestions on local items to use in my business so if you know of some let me know.  I’d love to find some MI made clothes and accessories that I can feature in sessions, and get them more exposure.  Feel free to bring any Michigan made items to your session.  I’m also looking for a local make-up artist to have available for some sessions.  I know I’m not at the forefront of this local movement but I want you to know I’m trying to do my part and I’d like you to help me do more!  Thanks!  Email me at info@partoflifephoto with any tips on Michigan sources.

 

part-of-life-photography-oakland-county-photographer

pArt of Life Photography logo

I won my first photo contest

I won my first photo contest

It’s not the first one that I entered though. I entered a contest to help raise money for Preserving Historic Sleeping Bear. I’m a big fan of Michigan. Sounds obvious since I live here but not every one in Michigan is a big fan, although I think it must be that they haven’t seen enough of it, but that’s just me. Like I saw on a shirt in the UP this summer, it said something like if you have to ask, you just don’t get it. Anyway, I digress… To enter one photo you paid $20 so over-achiever that I am, I paid $25 and submitted two. Well, $25 covered three entries so I uploaded one more for good measure. The photos were compiled and a local professional photographer judged the photos and selected to top 15 to be voted on. I was surprised to see that my photo was selected, and that it was the one that I wasn’t even going to submit. I asked once on Facebook for votes and saw within a couple days I had 16 votes. I was happy with that as I was up against some stiff competition. A week later the contest entered my head with many other random thoughts and I went back to see what was new with the voting. I was shocked to be in 3rd place. I put out the call to my friends and fans to check out the contest in case any one missed it. There was a lot of voting activity in those last days! A few days later, at the end of the contest I ended up with the most votes. One of the prizes was to have your photo printed and up for sale and receive part of the proceeds. How cool is that?? I love the other photos so I emailed the ‘powers that be’ and asked if I could pass along that prize to the 2nd and 3rd place winners. So now the top three photos will be printed and up for sale with all proceeds going to Preserve Historic Sleeping Bear. I better start working on next year’s photo competition.

 

Stepping Back in Time

 

Thanks if you voted, and thanks if you read all my ramblings!

I talked to Susan at Preserving Historic Sleeping Bear and she said the farm looks different from when I photographed it. Volunteers cut back a lot of the growth that was interfering with the houses and returned it more to how it looked when the farm was inhabited. She said that two of my photos captured something that doesn’t exist now since the trimmed back a lot of the growth around the rock wall and the out building. I can’t wait to see my photo up at Port Oneida in poster size! I think I need a copy in my office since those little steps have really taken me somewhere, in life and in my mind.