Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Annecy France Proposal Photography

Photographing Proposals is one of the things I love about working as a photographer. The planning that goes into it, the professionalism, and the ability to photograph calmly and sincerely while witnessing an incredible life event is necessary. I must say, I love the pressure and loving the pressure comes from years of professional photography experience. Being able to think quickly if a location needs to be changed because of weather, photograph discretely, and capture a moment that will last forever is why I love photographing proposals, and in French ... Demande en Mariage.

Recently, I photographed an Annecy proposal that ended at a local coffee shop. I was so excited when Edgar contacted me about photographing his proposal. I offered some tips on locations, times, and then added a few extra surprises for the couple as I knew champagne was a must, and as they both love coffee, coffee was obligatory.

The day of the proposal weather was perfect, as often the end of October can be in Annecy. The location was Ponts des Amours and when Edgar dropped to his knee I must say the pure surprise and happiness in Paulina's eyes was all I needed for my eyes to start watering. Proposals are full of emotion, excitement and pure sincerity. It's one of the reasons that I love photographing them. Photos are in the moment, and authentic.

After the "I DO" I gave Edgar and Paulina a moment to themselves. A moment where they could take in Annecy, celebrate, and just be present together.

We photographed in several spots in Annecy that I knew would be perfect for timeless and sweet photos. Both Edgar and Paulina had not visited before, so I thought it would be special to take them on a little walking tour through the city.

Paulina and Edgar glowed with happiness, making others smile too as they congratulated the newly engaged couple.

 Edgar mentioned that they loved coffee so I organized with Brumes Coffee to chill a bottle of champagne as a surprise gift to celebrate the moment. Edgar and Paulina ordered cappucinnos and I took a last couple of photos while they waited.

Once cappuccinos arrived I said goodbye, and wished them a big congratulations. Leaving the proposal I could not help but feel very grateful that I can photograph moments like these.

Photographing proposals is something that involves so much love. The highest compliment is that you the photographer end up being a part of a couple's story, and that is priceless.

SO I am thrilled to say I am booking creative, adventurous, heartfelt proposals in Annecy, Paris, and Geneva. All locations in between, and worldwide for 2019. Continually booking, lets work together.

Thanks for reading,

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Annecy Photographer ... Tips for great Family Photos from a Photographer

It's that time of year that makes you want to capture every moment. That feeling that makes us want to savor in the last bits of the year. One of the ways I always suggest to do this is with a photo session, but not your typical posed, perfect moment photo session but a photo session that is authentically genuine and true to your family. What does that mean: a photo session that allows your kids to be kids, and you, you.

I often tell my families and couples that I photograph to be themselves.  When thinking about photos to definitely not try and recreate a perfect copy of a Pinterest photo they saw. Sometimes it is great to get inspiration, but who wants photos that are carbon copies, often you will find yourself underwhelmed with the result when trying to copy every detail of this "said" perfect photo.
So, I thought I would share with you tips for great family or couples photos.

First, find a photographer that fits your vision. Each photographer has a different eye, perspective, and number one important factor is their personality. Do they love kids, people, are they able to organize a group, and put you and your loved ones at ease? If they are awkward, I am sure you will fill it, and that shows in photos.

Photographs should be moments, moments where you forget there is someone photographing you and your family. 

Second, let your kids be kids, and you be you. A traditional posed photo into the camera is great, and perfect for framing, but if you want to have a photo that transcends a wall portrait let your kids run, play, and be themselves in photos. After close to a decade of photographing the photos I have found that stand through time, are the candid journalistic moments.

The moments that were not posed, and would be difficult to recreate, because if you tried you are missing the magic of that specific moment. 

Third, have fun, and dress for comfort but dress up. This being said, if you want photo in the mountains, and you and your family are more relaxed dress true to you guys. If you are a couple and want to dress up, dress up. Be stylish, be original, be you. Dress for the weather, or be prepared and bring an extra pair of shoes, a jacket, or scarf if it is cold. If you have a simple style then dress like yourselves,  
in the end what is important is capturing and documenting your moment.  

Fourth, let go, and really be present. A good photographer will help you be present, encourage you to take in the moment with your family. It's your time to really share and celebrate your tribe, your group of people that you love with all your heart.  

Photos are your souvenirs reminding you of the people that get to see you in all kinds of moments year after year, celebrate this each and every day. 

Let go of the idea of perfection, that perfect photo because it's life's little imperfections that make things original, unique, and authentic just like the people in your life. 
Live in the moment, breathe in that air, and love the ones around you fiercely. 

Monday, August 27, 2018

Le Cottage Bise ... Talloires

Talloires. The only word I have to describe Talloires is ... breathtaking. I remember my first time visiting I felt so small in the best kind of way as mountains and the crystal blue lake of Annecy surrounds the little French town. You get a feeling that time stops here, that everything is right there, that it's possible to live in the moment and be completely present. Now, imagine having that same feeling while eating lunch, or waking up to that feeling. In June, I had the pleasure of eating lunch and getting a tour of Le Cottage Bise from Nicolas Bise. Nicolas and I had been working together for future collaborations and I thought it was so important to share my experience with all of you.

The Cottage has been a family business for decades, and prides themselves on their warm and signature hospitality, and sincerity. This you can absolutely feel while walking around the estate. I love when places allow you to escape, dream, and feel good and this is how you feel at Le Cottage.

Nicolas explained that they want every guest to feel this way. That their customers have been families and couples that return year after year. You absolutely feel this just by how warm the staff are when speaking with them.

Now lunch ... lunch started with a summer salad of tomatoes, herbs from the mountains, and delicious mozzarella. We chatted about good food, pairing it with good wine, and how important it was for the ingredients to be hand chosen and locally sourced.

Everything was thought about but not in that over fussy over done way. The main course was Magret de Carnard served on a sweet potato puree.

 My absolute favorite. For dessert a raspberry macaron with strawberry house made sorbet. The whole meal tasted like summer ... leaving you feeling full but not too full. The kind of full that makes you content, grateful, and ready to read a good book by the lake.

I think when it comes to staying somewhere one of the things I look for is a place where the staff just make you feel at home. And this, is exactly what you can feel at Le Cottage.

So, if you are visiting Talloires I strongly encourage you to pop in, say hello to Nicolas, grab lunch, or stay. You will definitely feel what makes Talloires special ... the people but more importantly how
they treat you and Le Cottage Bise knows this and embraces this.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

An Early Morning in Annecy with ... Jaanok Café

As a former baker I am always inspired by great baked goods and cafes that offer a warm ambiance. I can tell instantly if the person running the show loves what they do. I love authenticity and that is exactly what you will find at Jaanok Cafe. 

 It's a mix of eclectic, vintage decor, meets French sweetness. I was thrilled when Oriane agreed to participate in my "We the Doers and Creators" because she is definitely a creator and a doer. The morning I photographed ... an apple tarte coincidentally came out of the oven with sweet smells of caramelized apples filling the cafe. I sat at the counter watching Oriane take orders, make coffee, and handle a multitude of tasks as all business owners do.

 The light was perfect, and I was mesmerized by the sprinkling of powdered sugar on the apple tarte, magic if you ask me. Whens asking Oriane if she prefered Coffee or Tea here response was: Tea, because she likes the refreshing side of tea. Coffee can sometimes be too strong, but she likes the taste and drinks a type of coffee brew.

Photographing in the morning was a perfect choice Oriane's favorite quote is
" Life belongs to those who wake up early" 
and it's true. 

The morning coffee brewing, the energy to seize the day, there is a sense of wonder that fills the air as if there is a clean slate each and every morning. One of the main reasons I started "We the Doers and Creators" was to encourage the people in my community who are following their passion. When you follow your passion it is not always easy. So, "We the Doers and Creators" is here to remind you to keep going, follow that dream, believe, and work hard.  There are often long hours where perseverance, courage and resilience are needed to succeed.  

And, even though it is not easy it is so worth it. I am so honored to photograph Oriane from Jaanok Café her talents are endless and smile contagious. If you are in Annecy I strongly encourage you to pop in and grab a baked good, a meal, or coffee. You will find a place that is inviting, warm, and a place that feels just like home.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Motivation ... We the Doers and Creators

 BELIEVERS ... those people around you that carry the weight so you can be your best self.

There are people around you
 that if you look closely 
are continually motivating everyone 
by their actions.
For my latest "We the Doers and Creators" photo session
 I wanted to share with all of you my coach Emeline from Oski Crossfit. 
 When I first started going to Oski I was intimidated for a lot of reasons: new place, new language, new sport.
 I am naturally an outgoing person but also shy when I am not in my comfort zone. 

Emeline's coaching made Crossfit feel approachable, fun, intriguing, and possible in the right way. She is always there to encourage her athletes, but also there to say,
  Oski Crossfit is completely lucky to have a trainer like her. 
Here presence will make you feel comfortable, and she breaks down skills so they are easy to understand.

Did I mention she is SUPER POSITIVE, KNOWLEDGEABLE, SKILLED. and ENCOURAGING. She is a real DOER. Having an army background she explained to me the importance of having a strong mental game.

Heading into my Ultra Beast I wanted to share Emeline with all of you, because for me, she is one of the strongest, motivational women I know. 

 On days where I have woken up feeling not 100% I know I could see Emeline's instagram story and see her working out, inspiring others, and coaching. 

One of my mantra's I will be saying to myself is: 
It's a Mental Game, Stay Focused, Keep Smiling, and Have Fun  

and this is something she has told me. 
Completely grateful to Oski Crossfit and to Emeline for her continual positive support. 
You are a Doer, a fighter, and a motivator. 
THANK YOU for making others' lives that much brighter. 

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Annecy France Coffee+Photography ... Tours

I had this idea over a year ago to host a coffee+photography tour as these two are my domain of expertise. Photography because it is what I do professionally and love sharing tips, pointers, and skills that help others visually see their world in a different way. Coffee because I was a former barista now coffee lover with a passion for showing the world of specialty coffee with everyone. 

So, why the two together? 
 I have found while traveling that coffee and photography go hand in hand. Some of the best traveling tips I have discovered were from my coffee shop stops. Always willing to give tips, pointers, or recommendations you will find that baristas are some of the most open, helpful people. So, when I land in a city I am sure to have a list of coffee shops to frequent. Lucky for you, Annecy has quite a few all differing and specializing in certain things. 

 So it is with super excitement that last week I kicked off two tours. We met at my favorite cafe, Brumes, where each guest had a small espresso tasting. We talked about texture, taste, and coffee. During this time we also chatted about why we all love coffee. Afterwards I explained tips on how to take better photos while traveling and gave pointers on how to create a scene and style.

We then hit the streets of Annecy where I navigated guests through the city. I helped them with basic photo skills, and encouraged guests not to get stuck on photography gear that the most important thing is really setting up a photo, composition, and just photographing. Mistakes will happen but sometimes the photos that you think are mistakes are often the most beautiful. 

I love lightly blurred images, photos that get passed by because at first they don't seem perfect. We stopped for an almond croissant as one guest was hungry. Luckily, I know where to find the best almond croissant in Annecy. Afterwards it was to the chateau for a small bit of history but stopping along the way always for a photo. 

If you want to see a city, walk if possible. It's one of the best way to explore, and take photos.  I love stopping at cafes, looking up at architecture, finding the small details. As one of my guests explained, she loved discovering a place and it's ambiance. I loved that, I too think that's why I love photographing. It's a way to try and pause time, to have a tangible souvenir. 

So cool to meet Olga, another photographer from New York
After leaving the guests with more than enough photo tips, places to go, and things they must eat, we finished our tour at my favorite spot for ice cream. I strongly encouraged them to try the caramel beurre salé ... (salted caramel) and with our hands sticky from melted ice cream, smiles on our faces, we said until next time. For me, it was a moment where I just felt overly grateful for travelers, people willing to try something new, experience, and learn. 

Sending everyone a bit of wanderlust, a bit of coffee love, and a

Monday, February 26, 2018

Annecy Wedding Photography ... Photographe de Mariage

Love letters, the things we write to the people we love. 
For me, styled wedding shoots are my "love letters" to my craft (photography), to the people I photograph, the couples, the weddings, and the places I photograph.

A couple of weeks ago I had the honor to create a styled wedding photo session in Annecy, France.

 I wanted to do this for some time as a way to say ... thank you to this beautiful place I get to use as a backdrop for my photography. In 2014 I did this in California, so it was only natural to create a special wedding photo session for 2018. Annecy, France is a place I fell in love with and knew there was not much styling I would need to do. I wanted the couple I photographed and the photos to speak for themselves.

I did however know flowers were a must.
I asked a local florist, Murmur, to create my flower arrangement. The boquette added the perfect amount of color to the grey February morning.

The couple, Nadia and Christophe were married a little over a year ago, but live in Annecy. They wanted photos in the place they call home, the place they love, Annecy.

Wedding Photography for me ... is my time to get to know the couples I photograph. I spend hours before each wedding getting to know my clients, and take the utmost care in telling their story on their wedding day. I look at each couple and wedding completely different. I do not have a formula I apply to each wedding .... this allows me to create thoughtful, authentic, intimate, and original photos for each couple I photograph.

I believe wedding photos are souvenirs 
that need to stand the test of time
 and that in 5 years after your wedding 
your photos will allow you to be brought back to that moment 
when you said, "I do".

While photographing in Annecy and Paris, France I would say my photography style has become more natural, less forced, and I ultimately keep things simple.

I have fine tuned my technical skills, and trust completely in my years of EXPERIENCE.
I do not believe in over complicating poses, looking at pinterest for inspiration ... I find my inspiration in who and where I photograph.

This has allowed me to create photographs that speak for themselves. Photographs that make you feel.

My top 3 things all wedding photographs should do ...
tell a story, and tell the story of the couple you are photographing. 
How will you tell their "love letter to each other" in photos?

Capture a feeling, a moment photos need to make you feel something.

Be authentic to the couple, the day, the time, the place, the location.

Questions you should ask your wedding photographer
How would you describe your photography style in three words?
Do you have a portfolio?
Why did you choose to go into wedding photography? If you have a wedding photographer strictly into wedding photography for the money, your photos will definitely lack a sense of compassion and feeling.
What is your professional experience?

A question to ask yourself, how does the photographer make you feel? This person will be with you on your wedding with your closest family and friends, so it is imperative they make you feel good.

I feel so honored that Nadia and Christophe were part of my "love letter" to Annecy. After photographing weddings for the past 8 years, and moving to a new place to photograph this styled wedding shoot was so important to me. I feel grateful when a couple chooses me as their photographer. I love telling couples' stories visually. Your wedding photographer is not just a photographer but they are the person who you have chosen to tell your story.

In the last photo of the day, you can see that snow was lightly falling as the water glistened. 
Nadia and Christophe exchanged one last kiss and the moment was sweet and fleeting, perfect. 
Perfect because the snow was not planned, the pose was not planned, 
it was a moment .... that happened, 
a souvenir. 

I am currently booking 2018 and 2019 weddings in France and California. I am happy to travel, and would be honored to work with you. I also love to create custom wedding packages. Creative budgets are always welcome.You can find out all of my wedding photography details by simply emailing me: or visiting my website at:

Sincerest thanks, to Nadia and Christophe for letting me tell your story in a place I love so dearly, Annecy.