Do you remember when you decided you wanted to be a photographer? And do you remember the first type of camera you had? 

I took some photography classes in high school and college and had always had a loose interest in photography, however it wasn’t until I was pregnant with my third child that I felt inspired to pursue the passion further.

For years I mainly photographed my family, friends, and assisted a close friend of mine with her growing photography business. For myself personally, the business aspect had to grow organically, as it was something I was still not fully invested in until about five years ago when I was done having children.

Gosh! I don’t remember the exact model of the first camera I had. I wish I could say it was a rad vintage film camera but it was an intro Nikon digital camera of some sort that my dad gifted me when I moved to Hawaii at 18 years old. 

When you decided to become a photographer, did you have to overcome any hardships while trying to accomplish your goals? 

I would say that finding the balance between work and raising a large family has always been the biggest struggle for me. When I first launched my photography business I wasn’t entirely certain how to make it all work. Six kids are a full time job in itself. I have to say though, now, we have definitely found a better balance and it’s organically evolved and settled in the most beautiful way.

I set goals and boundaries and prioritized the most important things in my life and interestingly enough my family is a huge, involved part of my growing business. On occasion my husband will assist in my weddings and helps with the back end of running my business. More often than not, when I travel for work I am able to bring the entire family with me. We call them “adventures” and it’s something I am eternally grateful that photography has brought into my life.

Do you remember the first wedding that you shot? If you could talk to yourself back then, what advice would you give? 

I certainly do! I would tell myself to make every effort not to compare yourself to others in the industry, to be grateful for where you are at in your career and to know that as artists we all offer a unique perspective of the world through our own individual lenses.

I would also tell myself in regards to weddings specifically to not be afraid to speak up when necessary (I wish I would have found my voice a bit earlier on) and to not be afraid to stay true to your art …. It’s important you are a good fit for your clients’ needs but also that they are a good fit for you. 

What is one of the most unique requests from brides/grooms that they want of their special day? Did you have any shoots that challenged your skills as a photographer? 

I can’t say that I’ve had too many extreme requests, although I think it’s absolutely adorable when couples incorporate their pets into their wedding day! I think every wedding offers its own unique sets of challenges, i.e. extreme weather, time constraints, a location with several photography restrictions, a wedding party still hung over from the rehearsal dinner the night before … 

I think I’m constantly being challenged as a photographer, and it’s how we adapt to unexpected situations that forces us to grow. 

What is one of the most memorable weddings you have shot? A love story that really touched you? 

My last wedding of 2018 was probably my most memorable to date. After my couple’s venue burned down in the Woolsey fire just 24 hours before their wedding, my frantic bride called desperate for a plan B, as several of her guests had flown in from out of state and the date could not be moved.

In just twelve hours we were able to relocate her nearly 200-person wedding two hours north of her initial venue, rallied an amazing team of vendors, and pulled off the wedding of her dreams. 

One of the most emotional moments I have witnessed as a wedding photographer was watching one of my brides gift her groom with a custom ring made out of the metals from his father’s wedding ring who had tragically passed away years prior. He was so surprised and touched and it was a beautiful moment I felt so privileged to witness. 

Where is one of the most interesting places where you have photographed a wedding?

This past fall I had the honor of shooting an intimate candlelit ceremony in a villa in Lucca, Italy, dating back hundreds of years. It was pouring rain outside and it was such a dreamy and romantic setting. 

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