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Currently showing posts tagged Sunrise

  • Hawaii Destination Photograper | Sunrise Family Shoot

    Brittney found me online and asked to do a shoot while her family vacationed on Oahu from Nebraska. The only issue was that they were leaving in three days. I was free one day, but they had already purchased luau tickets for that evening, so we decided on a sunrise shoot. She said the kids would be fine due to the time difference and their 2-year-old Layne had been waking up by 5 am anyway.

    I am not a morning person and I always worry about lighting at sunrise because it gets REALLY BRIGHT really quickly, but I'm so glad we decided on sunrise at Sandy's...the beach was empty and the light was beautiful.

    All three kids were delightful - I wondered if Linden and Tucker were bribed with snorkeling or shave ice because I couldn't believe how happy and well-behaved they were at that unreasonable hour. They just wanted to smile and make my life easy...it was amazing! I learned that Blake is a farmer in Nebraska, which made me like them all the more. I have a soft spot for farming families.

    Layne decided she'd had enough of the waves and made a break for it. :)

  • Sunrise Beach & Farm Engagement Shoot | Hau'ula, Hawaii

    I have a special place in my heart for people with backyard farms. Partly because I love animals, partly because I spent a summer interning at a guava farm on Kaua'i (I'll save that story for another day), partly because I would love to have a backyard farm of my own, and mostly because I know how much energy and love is required to maintain a farm, even a mini one.

    Naturally, I was very excited when I found out Ke'ala and Danny had a backyard farm. And of course I asked if they wanted to incorporate their animals into our shoot. Ke'ala jumped on the idea. Yay! To top it off, their farm (and home) is across the street from a gorgeous beach. So j.

    We originally planned a late afternoon/sunset shoot to capitalize on golden hour light. But the day before I suggested we do a sunrise shoot...because with the right conditions, sunrise in Hau'ula is unreal. This meant I had to leave my house at 4:45 am...and I am not a morning person. I'm so glad we changed the plan because we lucked out with an incredible sunrise.

    After basking in the soft morning light, we walked across the street to Ke'ala and Danny's lovely home and I got to meet their animals. Their chickens - Happy Feet, Honey Biscuit, Snow White, and Mary - are beautiful. I don't think I've ever called a chicken "beautiful" before, but these were the most healthy, clean, and fluffy hens I'd ever seen. I learned that with certain breeds you don't immediately know if you have a male or female. Sadly, I didn't get to meet their other chicken, Princess Buttercup, because she turned out to be a rooster and they had to give her/him away because he was too loud. :(

    Their pups Nalu and Bebe (Bebe is short for Barbara Bush, she came to them pre-named HAH) were absolutely hilarious fighting over a small planter box. They had so much energy we couldn't quite pin them down for a family photo, but the action shots are priceless.

    Ke'ala and Danny have so much love for each other and for their animals. It baffles me that they both work demanding, full-time jobs - Ke'ala as a nurse and Danny as an engineer - and they still prioritize time for their animals and plants, and for activities together like diving and paddle boarding. You two amaze me!

    We were about to leave for Kualoa to finish our shoot when Danny asked if I'd seen Sunny. I said, "who's Sunny?" This is Sunny! Obviously we had to have a Sunny photo shoot. Most adorable baby tortoise ever.

    One thing I learned about sunrise shoots is that there's a window of soft, beautiful light that lasts for about 30 minutes. Then it is BRIGHT. Like super bright. We made it work at Kualoa, but I felt bad because Ke'ala and Danny had a hard time looking *anywhere* without squinting. I could barely see the screen on my camera. Lucky for me, these two are so natural and beautiful that the harsh light didn't detract from their photos at all.

  • Cappadocia Hot Air Balloon Ride

    When I first heard about Cappadocia it sounded like the coolest place ever.  Prior to our visit, the only way I could describe our next destination was, "I think we're going to the moon." 

    I sent my family a link to my sunrise balloon ride photos and my brother replied, "Holy Star Wars!"  This was especially funny because I didn't tell him that our underground city tour guide (I have so much to catch up on) pointed to a particular Cappadocian landscape as the inspiration for Luke's hometown, Tatooine.

    If I'd seen Star Wars I would have exclaimed, "Oh, yeah!" smiling and nodding like the rest of the group.  I know, I know, it's on my list.

    Back to the balloons.

    I was beyond excited to take off in a hot air balloon.  Who wouldn't be?  I hate waking up early, even more than I hate onions, but I could not wait to wake up at 5am for our balloon ride.  We went with Butterfly Balloons, recommended by our awesome hosts at Aydinli Cave House.  I cannot say enough about the family and staff that run Aydinli - they made Cappadocia absolutely amazing for us.  

    Our pilot was Mike Green, a veteran balloonist and UK native who now calls Cappadocia home.  He was clearly an expert at his craft, taking us low into the valleys where we touched trees and landing us directly on the trailer.  Impressive.  

    We climbed out of the basket as the crew was beginning to deflate the balloon, and one of the men saw W staring longingly at the giant semicircle.  The man motioned for W to come help and before I could say "have fun," W dropped his bag and ran toward the balloon like a kid chasing an ice cream truck.  It was adorable.  I was taking photos when another crew member motioned for me to give him my camera.  I must say, deflating the balloon was almost as fun as floating beneath it.      

    The vans were full heading back to town so Mike took the two of us back to our B&B in his snorkel-fitted green truck with his golden retriever Maggie in the bed.  I mean, come on, it's like he researched my favorite color and breed.  And the fact that I would love to drive a car underwater.  That's what the snorkel is for, right?

    Sigh.  So fun.  I want to go again.  

    Goreme, Cappadocia Region, Turkey

    For more photos: cappadocia hot air balloon ride