Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Tribe

My friend Jen's family.  We went to Cincinnati's Krohn Conservatory  to take some pics for her to use for Christmas cards.  At lunch afterwards, at Allyn's Cafe (best dang Quesadillas) she was trying to figure out how to word the card.  Jen's last name is Harten, her 3 daughter's are Finucane, her grandson is Masur and her oldest daughter, Addy's bf is Eubanks.  I jokingly said, "Just say Merry Christmas from The Tribe".  Then I said, "it doesn't really matter, as long as you have love."  Which she does.  Merry Christmas, Jen!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Do we really want to know?

We went to the Cincinnati Museum Center on Friday after Thanksgiving to shoot some photos and then took in the The Hubble Movie on the OmniMax screen.  Amazing film - if you haven't seen it - go see it.  It will restore your faith in this country we call America.

I said to Dave as we exited the movie "You know, this is Cincinnati - a pretty conservative town.  This movie was sold out every show for the last two days.  People are interested in this - do you remember hearing anything about this repair work mission performed by the Space Shuttle Crew in the mainstream news?" He answered it wasn't really mainstream (and I consider mainstream NPR) but he followed it on NASA's website and other Space websites.  What struck me is that News Media Moguls have decided that we are more interested in "Bored, Attention Deprived Housewives" or "Dancing Politician Offspring" or "Misguided Politician Lifestyle in Alaska" or "Animal Abusing Thugs who can play football" more than we care about "Incredible Real Life Hero Astronauts That Risk Their Lives to bring us Amazing Real Life Science in Space". 

You don't need to oppose crap media.  Just don't frequent it.  Demand excellence. And excellence doesn't include the intimidating fear-mongers catering to the fear-ridden consumers sitting on the other end of the cable in the Family Room.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Appointment more unwanted than the Dentist....

A few years ago, I went to my dentist for a cleaning; he commented that "you're a bit overdue - but I understand, I'm the last appointment you want to make".  Clarification Dr. Toothman - 2nd to last appointment. 

I fulfilled that number one hated appointment today.  My MD, who I like and trust, has a new practice, which is much further away from my office than it used to be.  I stuck with her.  My first appointment today in her new office went like this: I show up 5 minutes early.  Sign in; fill out all NEW paperwork (have these people ever heard of a database?) Get my blood pressure - it's always low so it impresses the nurse and makes me feel superior - until I have to sit in an examination room for 40 minutes with only a sheet to cover me. Really?  I'm on my lunch break, folks.  Why in the world do I have to sit there for 40 minutes?  I am at a loss.  So when she finally shows up for the appointment with her trusty laptop and has not BOTHERED to review my file before she meets me to get caught up with my history - I am slightly annoyed. She asks me what my past 2 year history is.  I understand it's my body - but I also expect some level of professional review of my file before you walk in for my appointment.  Honestly, if I showed up as unprepared for a client meeting as she did - I would be fired. And would expect to be.  Consider me in the market for a new doctor.

But, I did get to review a pretty cool decorating magazine with some photography that I wanted to get the same look through processing - so it at least stimulated some creative thought while I sat there contemplating how often they wash those hand crocheted mittens they slide over those foot stirrups....

Friday, November 12, 2010

Joy & Creativity

I found this blog, Ordinary Courage.  In her interview with Myriam Joseph, Myriam says:

My greatest creative barriers are the groups of squatters that take up space in my head. They lay around all day, shouting their bad advice and accusations, they don’t work, they don’t pay rent, they just talk, talk, talk.

This is so true.  I am sure I'm my own worst enemy.

Myriam Joseph is a Social Entrepreneur with a website that sells t-shirts for toddlers made of organic cotton and bamboo each printed with one of 4 words.  Words which represent the gifts she wishes she could give every child - Joy, Courage, Humility & Compassion.  And also gifts that she wished she had received.  To date she's raised $15,000 to rebuild schools in Haiti and support teachers there.  Her t-shirts can be purchased here.  I only wish she had Adult sizes! Would love to get one for my "baby" at college!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Pursuit of Sweet Potato Souffle

Someone reminded me of a recipe I made many years ago.  She loved it so much, she is still singing it's praises to people I work with.  I had totally forgotten about this dish.  I don't think I've made it in at least 7 years - but her insistence at me bringing it to a Thanksgiving get-together our office is planning sent me digging through my favorite cookbooks - this is Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant from 1990.  I also have a Cook's magazine from 1986 that I routinely use recipes from and my hand written recipe book circa 1980 prior to my first marriage 1981.  When discussing the Sweet Potato Souffle recipe with my friend, she talked of handwritten recipes from her grandma that she still uses but is sure no one will ever be able to decipher after her.  My friend is at least my age (49) but I think older. I'm a horrible judge of age. 

Anyway, this forgotten recipe will find it's place on my Thanksgiving Table this year.  Do you have a favorite recipe that you only make on Holidays?  Feel free to share here.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Shooting Seniors

I usually edit in-camera; getting rid of shots that won't work for the client - eyes closed, out of focus, funky poses - all of those exemplified here in this shot of Sarah. But this shot is Sarah.  We struggled with a constant breeze during her photo shoot.  I can't even remember how many times I said "um, fix your hair".  She's a great sport and put up with me bossing her around.  She was a joy to photograph.  And her Dad was a whiz at the light reflector.  Score!

See the entire photoshoot at CNZ Design Studio

Sunday, November 7, 2010

It was a tad chilly.

Early morning photo shoot for Senior Portraits this morning.  Close to freezing temperatures.  So I decided to bring some hot cocoa along for my client.  I think she liked it.

Hot Cocoa
Combine, stir & boil for 2 mins in the top of a double boiler over direct but low heat:
1 cup boiling water
1/4 cup cocoa
1/8 tsp salt
4 tbsp sugar
then add:

1/2 tsp cinnamon
Then add:
3 cups scalded milk
Stir and heat the cocoa. Cover and keep over hot water 10 more minutes. Add:
1 tsp vanilla
Beat with a wire whisk before serving.
See the photoshoot here: CNZ Design Studio

Recipe copied from The Joy of Cooking

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween.  I did not expect to be in this house for another Halloween.  But for the first time in about 5 years I had a ton of little kids come trick or treating.  The owners of the house next door (which is also on the market) came to me last week to ask about the amount of kids that come out for Trick or Treat.  Mind you, they own the house, but do not live there.  I mentioned that the previous owners used to shut off the lights and leave for the evening; so it effectively killed any participation of  kids coming to my house (last on the block).  She showed up tonight with bags of candy and her dog to hand out treats.  How cool is that?  I'm gonna miss this neighborhood.  A very special place.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Daughter & Mom

Hannah was a beautiful senior to shoot.  Her mom, Rebecca came along and we did a Corporate Head Shot for her business as well.  I enjoyed the time we got to spend together.  They were fun to be around - their relationship reminded me of mine with my daughter, who is off at college for her freshman year.  Lots of smiles & encouragement for each other.  Very cool.

Go to to my Facebook Page to see the entire shoot.

Friday, July 9, 2010

the newest addition

My most recent photography shoot.  I asked S & B if I could take "belly" shots of her for the experience as I had never done a maternity shoot before. At first, it was just going to be S and then hubbie B decided to join us!  The pics turned out better than I hoped for.  I'm looking forward to seeing her new son - he should be here any day now!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Lauren & Landon

Landon & Lauren

Landon joined the Masur/Mattix/Finucane/Harten clans on May 22nd, 2010.  A quiet little fellow; he weighs in at 7lbs and 11 oz!  He & Mom are doing just fine.



Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Shooting Seniors...

Ceeanna, my daughter, asked me last summer to take her Senior Portraits.  This soon included Sanam, her best friend and I was thrilled to have 2 beautiful models to work with. Ceeanna is THE best soccer player I know and will be attending Ohio University, Scripps School of Journalism in the fall.  I couldn't be more proud.

Sanam, Nam or Say-nam and other derivatives that we make fun of others trying to say. One gorgeous girl.  More confidence than you can shake a stick at, this girl fills the space with beauty and force. She's playing collegiate Soccer for University of Cincinnati in 2010 and entering Pre-Med. And I couldn't be more proud. And I hope she forgives me for the 11 year old birthday invite "faux pas" that's French for "fuck up" Nam... :)

So my next subject was Lauren (Lowen) and we had a great time.  Cloudy day.  Her mom joined us on the photo shoot.  Her mom is awesome and had some great input. Lauren has a golden heart and volunteers her time in Haiti along with her family. She is an excellent baker/chef and a beautiful /intelligent young woman. She will be attending college at University of  Alabama, majoring in Culinary Business. And I couldn't be more proud!

Kelsey Anne.  I've known this soft-spoken, beat the shit out of the other team, soccer player forever. She rocks. And delivers. Kelsey was named to the National Soccer Coaches of America Girls’ All-American team with  26 goals and 10 assists this past season. She plans to play soccer for Heidelberg in the fall of 2010.  I talked to Kels about her plans for a career; she likes the idea of teaching little kids.   I can see her teaching and coaching soccer to little ones - and letting them know - "this is NOT a tea-party, Offend, Defend or Get Out of the Way!"  But guess what?  They will know how to play soccer! And, yes, I couldn't be more proud!

Ellen.  What a beautiful girl. She was such a part of my life when she was younger so I all I could remember was "little girl" Ellen.  Here, I was photographing "grown up" Ellen. She's stunningly gorgeous and very organized about her future.  She's attending Culinary school in the fall, Ellen is a fabulous chef! She earned GOLD in the 2009 FCCLA Regional Competitions and was a state qualifier in Culinary Arts. I couldn't be more proud.