March 2018: Contrast at Share Six | Fort Collins, Colorado Lifestyle and Fine Art Photographer

The March blog circle theme at Share Six is CONTRAST. I started shooting SLRs, processing my black and white film, and spending countless hours (and – later – all-nighters) printing my images in darkrooms nearly 30 years ago. My love for contrasty images is very closely aligned to those days, but I have brought that love to color digital images as well, albeit to a lesser extent. I generally process my fine art images with the full range of tones, from pure black to pure white. I use histograms to help guide this aspect of editing, but there’s always an element of artistic license, as well. I am a bit of a purist in my photography work, and never shoot or process with HDR, and I rarely blow any value out of an image, other than the occasional bright sky. I think balancing the tonal values and artistic vision associated with contrast in an image is as delicate as any balance – and certainly as worthwhile. I was very tempted to pull images from my all-time favorites for this post, but decided to stick with a goal of shooting new ones, in the location, time, and light available for creating this blog post.

As I write this post, I am preparing for one of the busiest and most challenging weeks of sessions I have ever had, so I had to *make* time to shoot. We’ve had a few recent days that smiled upon us with the promise of Spring to come, and my family took advantage of one such day to explore a new-to-us hiking area. The images from this post are from an hour there, finishing about an hour before sunset. Shooting when I did presented me with harsh light that I often struggle with, but generally love for its contrast and dramatic conversions to black and white images.

As always, I hope you will follow my blog, as well as follow me on Facebook and Instagram to see more of the work I share. I also hope you will take the take the time to link around the full blog circle of talent. You’ll find the next link and details about how to submit your own images to be featured at the bottom of this post.

I sincerely appreciate you dropping by to check out my take on CONTRAST. Next in the blog circle is the highly-talented It’s Still Life Photography! Please link over and see the blog post Elizabeth has generated for our theme. For a chance to be featured at Share Six, please submit your CONTRAST images to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages (tag #sharesix_contrast) by April 5th.

 

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February 2018: Color at Share Six | Fort Collins, Colorado Lifestyle and Fine Art Photographer

The February blog circle theme at Share Six is COLOR. I’ve been very busy with clients and rebuilding this website (How do you like it!?), and not shooting for pleasure, otherwise. Thankfully, I made sure to shoot some great, colorful, historic signs along Route 66 in Albuquerque, Gallup, and Grants, NM just a few weeks back. It was hard to curate it down to just six – and, I failed. =)  I am sharing seven, but there will be more sprinkled around my various sites, in case you want to see them. Along with subscribing to my blog posts here, please follow me on Facebook and Instagram to see more of the work I share.

As always, I hope you’ll take the time to link around the full blog circle. You’ll find the next link and details about how to submit your own images to be featured at the bottom of this post.

 

I sincerely appreciate you dropping by to check out my take on COLOR. Next in the blog circle is the highly-talented Ceri Herd Photography! Please link over and see the post Ceri has generated for our theme. For a chance to be featured at Share Six, please submit your COLOR images to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages (tag #sharesix_color) by March 5th.

 

January 2018: Winter Light at Share Six | Fort Collins, Colorado Lifestyle and Fine Art Photographer

The January blog circle theme at Share Six is WINTER LIGHT. As you may recall, I took a spontaneous road trip to Wyoming and Northwestern Colorado over Thanksgiving, from which my last Share Six post was derived, for WONDERLAND. Thus, it may come as no surprise that I was on yet another spontaneous road trip and shooting for the current theme when blogs went live on the 6th – except mine. I am tardy, but I hope you won’t mind, once you see this month’s beauty below. As always, I hope you’ll take the time to link around the full blog circle (next link at the bottom), and then submit to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages for a chance to be featured.

Christmas came and went, but I still had 11 days to figure out before my children returned to school. So what’s a girl to do but take a spontaneous road trip – leaving less than 24 hours after deciding to do it? This one took me to New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, and the Western Slope of Colorado. I re-visited a number of beloved places and went to lots of new ones, too. I could have easily posted a hundred images for this blog post, but I just rolled a dice to decide which ones to use – almost! Below, you’ll see beautiful, soft, warm winter light play on adobe structures in Ranchos de Taos and Santa Fe, as well as golden hour shots in Arches and Canyonlands National Parks. I love the warmth of the light – especially on adobe walls and red rocks, as well as winter’s long, deep shadows. Follow me on Facebook and Instagram to track my adventures in something a bit closer to real time!

I sincerely appreciate you dropping by to check out my take on WINTER LIGHT. Next in the blog circle is the unparalleled Ceri Herd Photography! Please link over and see the post Ceri has generated for our theme. For a chance to be featured at Share Six, please submit your WINTER LIGHT images to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages (tag #sharesix_winterlight) by February 5th.

 

Elements Dance Center Portraits – Fort Collins, Colorado Dance Photographer

It was an honor and a joy to shoot Elements Dance Center’s individual and group portraits this weekend. I am still working my way through images, but wanted to go ahead and share some. If you need dance, sports, school, head shots, wedding, high school senior, family, maternity, or most any other kind of photography – including on-location, in my studio, in natural light, or with artificial light, I can help you out. Please contact me with your needs and I will be happy to meet for coffee or work up terms or a quote for the work. As always, thank you for your interest in Roots and Twigs Photography!

The Nutcracker by Contemporary Dance Academy, 2017 – Fort Collins Fine Art and Dance Photographer

I had the honor and pleasure of photographing Contemporary Dance Academy’s performance and warm-up classes for their ballet performance of Clara and The Nutcracker, both at The Lincoln Center, here in Fort Collins, Colorado, in December 2017. It will take a while to go through the performance photos, but I wanted to share two early favorites, with many more to come!

December 2017: Wonderland at Share Six | Fort Collins, Colorado Lifestyle and Fine Art Photographer

The December blog circle theme at Share Six is WONDERLAND. I hope you’ll take the time to link around the full blog circle (next link at the bottom), and then submit to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages for a chance to be featured.

As is the case for many others, the fall/winter holidays often leave me feeling a bit lonely and blue. This year, just 3 days before Thanksgiving, I got ahead of those feelings and began a plan to spontaneously leave the very next day for a quick trip to visit wild horses and Grand Teton National Park. I mean, it had been almost three whole months since I last went – ha! It was the best decision I have made in quite a long time. Not only did it prevent holiday blues, but it was, in fact, one of the best short trips of my life. The wildlife in the Tetons was far more abundant than it has ever been during the past 17 years of summer trips – including moose, my favorite animal to see there. And talk about a winter wonderland! There certainly could have been a lot more snow around – and there was – but rain on the day I traveled melted much of it. Still, it was still beautiful around Jackson where most snow was melted, and the snow remained in the actual park. I refer to snow as “the great equalizer” because it makes even the brownest, drabbest landscape beautiful. Of course, the Tetons are gorgeous without snow, but it does add a touch more magic everywhere. Winter wonderland all around, indeed.

I kind of like the saying, “Math is Hard,” just because it sounds silly, but I am so pro-math that I can hardly joke with it… Still, my six images became twelve this month. #sorrynotsorry  All of these images were taken in and around Jackson, Moose, Kelly, and Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming over the 2017 Thanksgiving weekend.

Several of these images are currently listed in my Etsy shop as prints, and all of them can be purchased. I will also be adding photo jewelry, key chains, magnets, and ornaments options in the near future, and have already made several pieces featuring these images.

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I sincerely appreciate you dropping by to check out my take on WONDERLAND. Next in the blog circle is the unparalleled Ceri Herd Photography! Please link over and see the post Ceri has generated for our theme. For a chance to be featured at Share Six, please submit your WONDERLAND images to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages (tag #sharesix_wonderland) by January 5th.

 

Roots and Twigs Photography’s Birthday Sale!

 

Many of you know I have a whole other professional career, which I am very proud of, and passionate about. However, my serious work in – and love affair with – photography pre-dates that career, and working as a professional photographer was my dream for decades. It wasn’t until I had children and chose to stay at home with them during their ongoing early years that I had to cut way back in my other career, and was able to carve out smaller chunks of time for photography projects. Four years ago today, I officially launched Roots and Twigs Photography. Long before my first “birthday”, I was booked solid with weddings, events, and family sessions, week after week. Soon after, I moved across the country and had to start all over again, which is no joke. Re-building has been harder and slower than I ever imagined, but momentum is building. Just this week, in a twenty-four hour period, I booked a local wedding and finalized plans to be flown back to shoot three big sessions back in my previous market. I am looking forward to busier times ahead!

As an incentive to bring more new clients in, I am offering 50% off all print packages for every session booked through the end of November. Session must take place by the end of 2017 to take advantage of this offer.

Professional Print Packages, Available only at time of booking

Aspen Print Package: $100  $50 >>   Includes (1) 11×14, (3) 8×10, and (25) 4×6 or 5×7 Prints;
Spruce Print Package: $75 $37.50  >>   Includes (2) 8×10 and (15) 4×6 or 5×7 Prints;
Pine Print Package: $50 $25  >>   Includes (1) 8×10 and (5) 4×6 or 5×7 Prints

Many of you will want photos for holiday cards, or just some updated family shots. I also want to make you aware that I am available to shoot throughout the Thanksgiving holidays, so if you have extended family gathering, there’s no better time to capture some memories of your time together! I hope to hear from you soon!

Best,
Tori

November 2017: Harvest at Share Six | Fort Collins, Colorado Lifestyle and Fine Art Photographer

The November blog circle theme at Share Six is HARVEST. I hope you’ll take the time to link around the full blog circle (next link at the bottom), and then submit to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages for a chance to be featured.

I have lived almost all of my adult life in cities and when I have gardened, it has been in small raised beds or  mixed in with flower beds. However, as I tell people, I grew up “gardening by the acre.” It’s in my blood, but I am far from a legitimate farmer these days. Still, I want to ensure that my children know where food comes from and that they have a certain measure of self-sufficiency when it comes to growing and preserving their own food. The images I am including here include home-grown carrots, lettuce, and rhubarb. There’s also an image I shot at my childhood home, as my daughter learned how to crack open walnuts from the walnut trees there on the property with a hammer, just as I did as a child. And I’m not sure I could get away without a couple of pumpkin harvest shots! I haven’t grown pumpkins as an adult, but we grew them a lot when I was a kid, especially “Tennessee cooking pumpkins” which are great for pies, but less brilliant orange for jack-o-lanterns. Of course, we carved them up, too, and also toasted the seeds for snacking.

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I sincerely appreciate you dropping by to check out my take on HARVEST. Next in the blog circle is It’s Still Life Photography by Elizabeth Willson! Please link over and see the post Elizabeth has generated for our theme. For a chance to be featured at Share Six, please submit your HARVEST images to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages (tag #sharesix_harvest) by December 5th.

 

Teen Twins – Fort Collins and Boulder Family Photographer

Family with Dogs Portraits! – Fort Collins and Boulder Family Photographer

I looooove working with families with dogs! They inject so many more opportunities for candid moments than many sessions offer. Plus, I am just a dog person. =) We got such beautiful light for this session, another golden hour one. Thank you so much for a fun and beautiful session, guys!

Family Portraits – Fort Collins and Boulder Family Photographer

I just realized that, while I shared photos from several of my last sessions, I never blogged them, so watch me go add them! I met this fun and easy-going family during the golden hour for a park session. I love it when the parents are happy to let the kids be themselves and express their true personalities in photos. The son, especially, did this in front of my lens. Thank you so much, for such a great time, guys!

September 2017: Reflections at Share Six | Fort Collins, Colorado Lifestyle and Fine Art Photographer

The September blog circle theme at Share Six is REFLECTIONS. I hope you’ll take the time to link around the full blog circle (next link at the bottom), and then submit to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages for a chance to be featured.

Please brace yourself for the shorter version of a very long REFLECTIONS story, touching on my passion for National Parks, and Yellowstone in particular this time. This summer has been a whirlwind for my family – a good whirlwind, but a whirlwind all the same. My husband recently left his job and we launched another company. With that employment change, we found ourselves with a window of time just before school started back to take another trip. About two months ago, we loosely decided to go to Casper, Wyoming to view the total solar eclipse, but once we had the extra vacation time, we decided to go to South Dakota to visit Badlands, Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse, Wind Cave, Custer State Park, and more, before driving to totality, somewhere in Nebraska or Wyoming. However, as busy as our summer had been with other trips, and as fly-by-the-seat-of-our-pants as we are anyway, when I started looking for campground availability four days before we were to leave, I discovered that nothing was available and we weren’t willing to wing it with first-come, first-serve campsite hopes for 11 days. I looked at the eclipse path and noticed the path of totality was right over our favorite campground in Grand Teton National Park and that we could literally watch it from the campground! We were just there last year, but jumped at the chance to return. We left early on a Saturday morning to try to grab a first-come, first-serve site that day, but went prepared to stay on US forest land until we could snag one, if necessary. Well, by 2:30 in the afternoon, we were sitting pretty in one of the last available – but very best – sites there! They filled up before 3:30 and the days leading up to the eclipse were a huge disappointment to many who arrived later, still hoping to secure a site. We count our blessings that things worked out for us to be there for the eclipse and all the other wonders Mother Nature offers in the area.

A huge piece of my heart belongs to the Tetons for its majestic peaks, wildflowers, days past when I camped in the back country there, and – I won’t lie – the moose! Still, my favorite National Park is so cliche, as it is Yellowstone. I love Bryce, Yosemite, the Tetons, Rocky, Acadia, Great Smoky Mountain, Arches, Canyonlands – I mean, it’s hard to go wrong! But I am a STEM girl (OK, STEAM!) and for the tremendous science, the fantastic geology, the spectacular colors, the Yellowstone Caldera, the wildlife, the fascinating variety of thermal features – Yellowstone wins. Yes, it’s crowded in peak season and I have yet to get there off-peak, but I ache to go in snow – soon! I am always incredibly disappointed by the lack of respect and care demonstrated by many tourists – including those who walk off the boardwalks, breaking the law as they enter the fragile thermal areas, and those who approach wildlife, far too close. Nevertheless, it is a truly magical place, full of so much to learn, observe, and appreciate.

Early in the trip, I got to talking with three lovely tourists from India, and their American tour guide as we watched a bull moose by the river below in the Tetons. I am not sure where the guide was from, but he seemed very attached to the Tetons, and was incredibly dismissive of Yellowstone. In my opinion, the two parks have very different vibes, but they are both phenomenal in their own ways. The guide had already taken the tourists to Yellowstone for one measly day, and he said that’s all you need there. He laughed at me when I said we were going up and asked if I had been before, which I affirmed. He then asked, in a very mocking tone, why I would return. Now, understand, this was not a negative conversation, per se, but my mind was blown by the question of why I would ever return. Even if it wasn’t for my own love of the park, I have small children, which he knew. The opportunities to allow them to grow up, seeing the park regularly, learn from tourists’ mistakes and others’ respect, and – most of all – to learn about the science there – are tremendous. Every time we take them, they learn more about nature, human nature, and our planet. They learn about wildfires, birth, renewal, and respect. So, Sir, wherever you are, I am sitting here, reflecting on the majesty of Yellowstone and your bewildering attitude that Yellowstone is worth no more than a one-day visit in a lifetime. I beg to differ, and offer some literal REFLECTIONS below for a very small peek into why it’s worth so very much more to me and to my family.

 

I sincerely appreciate you dropping by to check out my take on REFLECTIONS. Next in the blog circle is the fabulous It’s Still Life Photography! Please link over and see the post Elizabeth has generated for our theme. For a chance to be featured at Share Six, please submit your REFLECTIONS images to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages (tag #sharesix_reflections) by October 5th.

August 2017: Collections at Share Six | Fort Collins, Colorado Lifestyle and Fine Art Photographer

The August blog circle theme at Share Six is COLLECTIONS. I hope you’ll take the time to link around the full blog circle (next link at the bottom), and then submit to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages for a chance to be featured.

I struggled with this theme. The biggest reason was that I simply have way too much on my plate lately, and haven’t had time to plan and shoot for it. I pondered recycling some old images that might pass for the theme, but eventually settled on sharing images from my family’s recent trip to the Outer Banks of North Carolina. We only spent 2.5 days there, along with another 12.5 days in the state, but it was just the second time my kids have been to the ocean, and they were too young the first time to enjoy or remember it. We covered many of the typical tourist sites (Currituck, Bodie Island, and Hatteras Lighthouses; Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum; Wright Brothers Memorial; and a brief stop at the Elizabeth II ship) – and hiked the dunes until we found wild horses in Corolla. Still, the best memories will probably be the simple ones at the beach. I am a lifelong mountain girl, but the beauty, serenity, and joy we shared there on this trip has me re-thinking my status! My take on COLLECTIONS is the collection of MEMORIES we created on this trip and – for the first time ever – I am not sharing  six, but ten. Sorry?! As I write this, I haven’t even viewed all of my trip photos, yet I am packing to leave for another trip, so I decided not to agonize on the culling process. Cheers!

 

I sincerely appreciate you dropping by to check out my take on COLLECTIONS. Next in the blog circle is the wonderfully talented Ceri Herd Photography! Please link over and see the post Ceri has generated for the theme. For a chance to be featured at Share Six, please submit your COLLECTIONS images to the Share Six Facebook and/or Instagram pages (tag #sharesix and #sharesix_collections) by Septemeber 5th.