branding photographer

WE'RE BACK! (from Virginia Beach.)

At last! It’s Friday! *insert celebration emoji here* Thanks for your patience as I took a week or two off to go on vacation (!!!) and to reorient myself afterwards.

The chocolate chip pancakes, the Dirty Hippie burrito and a flight of mimosas is the best way to vacation.

The chocolate chip pancakes, the Dirty Hippie burrito and a flight of mimosas is the best way to vacation.

I went to Virginia Beach with my fantastic boyfriend/partner-in-crime, Jeff. We were there to celebrate one of his best friend’s weddings and it was one of the most joyous, fun, and exciting weddings I’ve ever been to. Congratulations again to Julie and Matt! *insert another celebration emoji here* Around the wedding plans, Jeff showed me his hometown. We met in KC (my hometown) and it was wonderful to switch tour guides! I got to see all of the local VB spots, including The Bee and the Biscuit (OOF. Delicious. A bit of a drive away in Pungo, VA, the Dirty Hippie breakfast burrito and their mimosa flight was delightful.). We went to the oceanfront and took an evening walk around his neighborhood. While our trip was jam-packed busy, it was wonderful to exhale by the waves. Here’s some of my favorite photos from this trip! 

Coming back, I also learned a lot. There needs to be balance in work and play, incorporating time to be focused and productive with time to play and go with the flow. We’re in the era of self-care and work-life balance, something that is constantly changing and evolving. The balance looks different for everyone and it generally is something that takes time to hone. For me, I sprint, get winded, and hit a wall that forces me to slow down to reevaluate where my energy is being spent. Now, honing my skills as an imperfect human being and noting that I tend to ‘sprint’ in my endeavors, allows me to be aware and optimize my pace for the long run and maybe circumvent the wall rather than crashing into it. Going on vacation allowed me take a step back from my ‘sprint’ and to come back with a refreshed mind, ready for the marathon. 

I hope your weekend is refreshing and bright! Cheers to the Atlantic ocean, love, vacations, and continual learning!

Until next time,

Julia

Friday Facts

Happy Friday! I’ve been thinking a lot about how we identify with our positions lately, about how sometimes we can unintentionally pigeon-hole ourselves into one way of thinking and forget that we are so much more than we realize! For me, I get stuck in the track that I’m only a photographer. This is a space to share a bit beyond just photography and more about what’s been inspiring me lately and who I am. As this is my first personal post, I’ll start off with three factoids about me.

Rachel (left) and I posing in our traditional ‘Kate graduated!’ pose. Kate is the sister in the middle!

  1. Sister, Sister, Sister.

    I have two sisters, both younger than I am. Rachel and Kate have been my best friends growing up and the three of us are peas in a pod. While our lives take us in different directions with new adventures and places, there’s always an open door for a phone call to talk and a bottomless well of love and support. They were my first models and assistants as we crafted fashion sets from our Barbie dolls in the living room and have been endlessly supportive of my work.

In teacher training, we taught many classes to each other before we taught in public. This photo was taken the weekend of our first twenty minute teaching session. Courtesy of Cindy Vanderweide.

2. Namaste, friendos!

I am a certified yoga instructor through the Yoga Alliance. I earned my 200RYT certification this past July and am over the moon. It was a leap of faith to enroll in teacher training by it was hands down one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. It’s more than stretching and breathing to me, it’s become a way to reconnect with myself and find some silence and peace among the chatter. I even use mirroring (my right as your left when we face each other) and breathing techniques while photographing to provide a fun and relaxed space with clear and concise directions for my collaborators and subjects. My yoga practice and teaching students continually inspires me to explore new photographic processes and opportunities as I explore new teachings and tune in further to myself and others.

Maya the kitty cat loves catnip and scratches on the left side of her face and snuggling under the covers.

3. Cats = LOVE.

Finally, I’m a HUGE cat lover. I have one cat whose name is Maya. She’s named after the fantastic poet, Maya Angelou. (I end up naming things after female icons and role models. My car’s name is Frida Car-hlo.) Maya is four years old and is my furry pride and joy. She’s so snuggly and kind but isn’t afraid to yell at the top of her lungs when she thinks it’s dinner time. 

Drop a comment with what’s inspiring you right now in the space below and cheers to Fridays, sisters, yoga, and cats! 

Until next time,

Julia

Ash and Bleu Cheese Co.

Today I’m throwing it back to one of my very first clients, when I realized that small business branding was where I wanted to go. Allow me to introduce Ash and Bleu Cheese Co.! Started by Bethany in 2017 with a passion for community and cheese, she reached out to help create some visuals for her website. 

Bethany and Ash and Bleu Cheese Co. camper, June 2017.

Melt-in-your-mouth delicious bacon and fig grilled cheese on it’s way to an Overland Park Farmers Market regular!

Melt-in-your-mouth delicious bacon and fig grilled cheese on it’s way to an Overland Park Farmers Market regular!

Rather than a food truck, Bethany had a cheese camper! Stocking an exclusive selection of local, artisanal cheeses, homemade jams and jellies, and crafting delicious sandwiches from those cheeses, Ash and Blue Cheese Co. was a personal, midwestern fromagerie! Green Dirt Farms (Weston, MO), Marcoot Jersey Creamery (Greenville, IL), and Edgewood Creamery (Springfield, MO) and more made appearances as rotating options each week at the Overland Park Farmers Market. All of these delicious cheeses were served between crispy, crunchy slices from Ibis Bakery (Kansas City, MO)!

Third Thursday attendees sharing an Ash and Bleu Cheese Co. twist on Macaroni and Cheese.

Third Thursday attendees sharing an Ash and Bleu Cheese Co. twist on Macaroni and Cheese.

Not only did Ash and Bleu Cheese Co. have amazing, conscious, and delicious products, Bethany was great! All throughout working with her, she had a direct vision and collaborated with kindness and humor. I’ll never forget while we were photographing her styled images for her website and waiting for the sun to set, she ran to the gas station to grab some water and came back with Miller Lite tall boys for the team and proceeded to make us all spectacular grilled cheeses for dinner. The sunset, dinner, conversation, and laughter from that evening encompassed not only who Ash and Bleu Cheese Co. is but also why I do what I do. 

Charcuterie board handcrafted to highlight the fresh and local vendors that Ash and Bleu Cheese Co. worked with.

Charcuterie board handcrafted to highlight the fresh and local vendors that Ash and Bleu Cheese Co. worked with.

Since 2017, Bethany has been celebrating her family and welcomed a new addition last year, setting Ash and Bleu for later. Green Dirt Farms, Marcoot Jersey Creamery, Edgewood Creamery all continue to offer delicious cheeses and community. If you’re in their area, head over the the farms and check them out! Check out the gallery below for more of my favorites from my time with Ash and Bleu Cheese Co.!

Cheers to Mondays, cheese, surprise tall boy beers, and a vibrant community! 

Until next time,

Julia