Monday, June 29, 2015

morning smoothie bowls and food photography


This little blog has transformed over time from a food blog to my space to talk about the latest and greatest of Coeur de La Photography. I write about recent shoots, weddings, photo adventures (which are all wonderful) but lets not forget how my photography journey started … as a food photographer. Fast forward and I thought why not incorporate more food photography (drum roll pleassssseeee) and … recipes. Without further ado from my kitchen to yours … a morning smoothie bowl that will have you dancing.

Smoothie bowls simply put are … rad (yes I still use rad to describe something really amazing).  I love breakfast and have been trying to make breakfasts that have me leaving full, healthy, and all together good because with a busy on the go lifestyle I need meals that pack a punch. Tid bit: I absolutely love love love acai bowls and for me a smoothie bowl is a nice and easy alternative.


My go to breakfast smoothie is packed full of goodness from avocado, spinach, blueberries, a banana, almond milk, chia seeds, and a little protein powder. This combination may seem a little crazy but it leaves me feeling full for hours on end. I had an epiphony after going to one of my favorite spots for an acai bowl a couple of weeks ago and I came home inspired to put together a version I can call my own using my smoothie recipe.

The good stuff: I decided I would make my usual morning smoothie (described above and made with a little less almond milk) and put it in my favorite bowl. I sliced bananas, strawberries, and then sprinkled dried coconut and goji berries on top of my smoothie mixture. Then I drizzled a little local honey and the result: a Morning Coeur Bowl.  No matter what I kind of mood I wake up in there is no possible way not be happy while eating a breakfast so colorful. I know this is going to be a tried and true staple … I mean we all need a little goodness in the morning … right?! I know I do … enjoy!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

hiip … more than a brand


As a photographer one of the highlights of my job is having the opportunity to work with people, artists, visionaries, and entrepreneurs that lead by example. People that stand for something that is more than their brand. People whose actions speak louder than their words … and that is exactly what hiip embodies.


I met Nicole a couple years ago and I knew from our first meeting she would inspire others. When she asked me to photograph her Marina and Tribal lines I immediately was onboard.


Not only are her hiip bags cute and versatile but ... with each hiip purchase a hiip basic necessities bag is given in person to the homeless community is SF. Inside each bag you can find socks, a toothbrush, toothpaste, lip balm, shampoo …. all the little things that we so often take for granted.

In 2015 they will be partnering with #HastagLunchBagSF to hand deliver lunches and necessities to the Tenderloin district in SF. I can't rave enough about what great things hiipsf is doing for others. I am wholeheartedly honored to work and photograph for hiip and I hope they inspire you in one way or the other. Hop on over to their site and check out all of the goodness.

I believe, any act of generosity and kindness, no matter small or large ... amounts to GREATNESS. Greatness that can be seen and felt … that is hiip.  

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

take my hand … engagement photos at Lands End trail

Love is an adventure … a glorious, sweet, and incredible adventure.


 I am a huge advocate for engagement photos that are laid back, personable, and a true representation of who a couple is. So, I was completely excited to photograph a couple who definitely marches to the beat of their own drum and quite literally paves their own trails (both avid rock climbers).We met Maggie and Timbo at Andytown Coffee Roasters for coffee and scones and while the fog burned off ... they filled their bellies with deliciousness, sipped cappuccinos ... while we snapped away (don't worry in true Coeur de La fashion we sipped coffee as well just before they arrived) :)





After coffee we headed to Lands End trail (one of our favorite places to shoot) and from its gorgeous views and woodsy trails there was no other place more perfect for our shoot. Maggie and Timbo are adventurous, fun loving, and LOVE the outdoors so it seemed only fitting to photograph them at Lands End.



 We chatted about how they met, their love for rock climbing, their time living in New Zealand, surfing, and details about their upcoming mountain wedding. Marc and I were completely inspired by their love for traveling and wonder.


To say we are excited to photograph their wedding would be an understatement. 
Cheers to always letting your love of adventure lead the way. 

 Engagement photo tips from us to you:
- find a location based on things you love as a couple
- do not get caught up on this grand image of what your photos NEED to look like based on something you've read or been told. Create your own vision based on who you are as a couple.
- Think of your photos as artifacts and snippets that tell and show a story … your story.
- find a photographer that you feel comfortable with and understands your vision
- dress comfortable … yes it is great to clean up, dress up, and put on something snazzy, but there is a big difference when you wear something that makes you feel good, express yourself, and feel comfortable. If you wear something you don't normally wear  … I can promise you will be uncomfortable and this shows in photos.
-  REMEMBER JUST BE YOU … because photographing couples that are true to themselves is our complete honor and we love when you are original, true to who you are, and different.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Art and Photography


The month of May was a whirlwind of a month but a whirlwind in a great way. We traveled to New York (our first visit and a more in depth blog post to come) and immersed ourselves in art ... from galleries and admiring street art to going to openings, talking art with one of our favorite artists … our good friend Derek, and last but not least visiting The Whitney (where I pretty much could have spent hours). I honestly could not get enough Art. And, it got me thinking, I need to live an artful life at home.

This all may seem like common sense but while on vacation it is easy to do, see, and go wherever you want. At home, commitments, photo projects, shoots and photography take up a good portion of my time. But, what I truly realized is that I feel content and full when I'm around art. Thus, while in New York I made it my intention to live and breathe art, to paint more, and create more.  New York also made me realize I want to create a body of work that makes a social statement. What that is … I am not quire sure but, everything starts with an idea and cultivating that idea is the important part.

Fast forward to our return home, I am catching up on emails and serendipitously there is an email from my friend Derek about an award called the Exposure Award and if you know my Francophile self you know that any contest that has me traveling to France is one I would jump at. More importantly, this award was a way for me to show friends, family and the world the depth of my photography. What photo did I choose? I chose a photo of a bride breastfeeding in the afternoon light on her wedding day.

I remember thinking … this is the heart of my work and I felt I was
capturing a fleeting moment … a moment that could easily have been overlooked. But, what I have found is what we overlook, whether moments, people, or circumstances are the things that ultimately matter and shed light on our character. 

I have until midnight tonight for people to leave comments and votes for the Exposure Award. So far, the comments I have read have brought me to tears, given me chills, and affirmed why I call photography my art and my passion. You can see the photo I chose by clicking here and vote/comment as well. Thank you to all of you for your continual support, inspiration, and love.


Thursday, May 7, 2015

Maternity Photos ... an Ode to Mamas


In honor of Mother's Day I wanted to post a maternity session that I did for one of my dear friends Lauren. Fast forward 4 months after these pictures were taken and I had the honor of photographing her son Clive's birth (and absolutely can't believe he will be one in June). When it comes to maternity photos I love keeping them simple, journalistic, and true. I wholeheartedly believe less is always more. I want moms to be who they are. 


I love photographing moms in their favorite settings … places that make them feel comfortable, confident, and at ease. For Lauren, home is definitely where her heart is.





 Being able to see the women I photograph grow into authentic, strong, and inspiring moms is incredibly rewarding.


So, to all of the moms I have photographed, will photograph, and hope to photograph you are loved, appreciated, and true blessings to the lives you impact daily. 
Happy Mother's Day from Coeur de La Photography. 

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Don't follow the "rules" ... a wedding in a redwood grove

This past weekend we photographed our first wedding of 2015 and it got me thinking … I still need to share some of my favorite 2014 weddings with all of you. I am great at posting to Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter but goodness ... it takes me forever to share on this blog. But, it's better late than never right? When I speak with brides and grooms about weddings and photography I always affirm them that there are absolutely no rules when it comes to planning your wedding. I remember planning my wedding and it was so easy to feel overwhelmed or pressure to do things a certain way. I can't imagine what it is like now with our highly visual outlets of inspiration (Pinterest). I get excited when I meet with brides and grooms and they tell me they are doing what they want. We love couples who march to the beat of their own drums. Your wedding should be entirely up to you. The more creative the better … go for it. There are no rules ... anything goes.


This past August we photographed Kelly and Solvi's wedding in a redwood grove just outside of Ferndale, California.


We hiked in with 20 family members and photographed them in a setting that was ethereal, beautiful, and perfect for their intimate wedding.


 We felt honored to be there photographing. 


After the ceremony we went back to Ferndale where family was waiting to celebrate. 


Dinner was made by the mothers of the bride and groom and served on antique tableware. 


The flowers were put together by Kelly herself and the cake … made by Solvi's mom. The cake was adorned with the softest pink dahlia I've ever seen. And let me not forget the cutest cupcakes made by Kelly … one very talented lady.


Every detail had a meaning, a story, and a reason ... making the day completely authentic.  So authentic … you could feel it.


The cake was cut and toasts were said while the sun set in the background. Afterwards Kelly and Solvi danced underneath the summer sky with their family ending the day just as it started … beautifully. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Lifestyle Photography … newborn photos at the beach.


With a new year comes new ideas, inspirations, and goals. Over time I have been affirmed that when it comes to how I photograph … simplicity is best. I say this because there is a never ending pressure to compare work. Comparing is a slippery slope. For me, comparing brings on the pressure to change (not always in the best ways), and fix things that are not always broken. Looking back on my photography from several years back I see things that are so raw, true, and simplistic. I cherish my early work because it was so … simple.  What is simple in regards to photography you might ask? Photos that are candid, journalistic, and thoughtful. I appreciate the importance of a good pose but what it comes down to is my ability to capture a tangible moment. Thus, lifestyle photography is what I am PRO at (ha ...I can toot my own horn every now and then right?!). Now that it is 2015 I have gone though the majority of my portfolio and realized that the shoots and photos that really resonate with people are the shoots that are considered lifestyle photography. Don't get me wrong, I think there are definitely newborn photos that should embrace the power of a good basket and blanket (you know the photos where you wonder how did that photographer get that newborn to do that?). However, every time I see photos like that I wonder in 5, 10, 15 years, will those photos be remembered? I want the people I photograph to remember an outing, a day, a moment.

So, it was my pleasure that I recently photographed a newborn session for a family that means the world to me. They wanted no fuss, simple photos, documenting their first outing together as a family of four.

I spent the morning with them chatting about their sweet little guys arrival, how their soon to be 3 year old was transitioning to big brother, and how it felt to be a family of four.




Honestly, being able to photograph moments like these are exactly why I love what I do.



Even wearing a beanie couldn't keep this guy away from the waves. I love seeing the endless energy kids have to play and play.



Life can be so fleeting, wonderfully sweet, and perfectly imperfect … moments like these can't be posed. But with photography they can be cherished … always.


Currently booking lifestyle family sessions … so drop me an email even if it is simply to say hello.