Tag Archives: Seattle

The Beauty Of Age Project

The Beauty of Age Project is a labor of love to celebrate women at every age. We often see women photographed in media and at family events but they all start to disappear around age 50. I want to photograph women ranging in age from 50-100 years old and hopefully inspire others to see the beauty of aging…

As with any project, I have decided to set up a few deadlines and goals:

1. To photograph women over the next two years (final session in December 2019),

2. To photograph one woman representing each age,

3. Host a show in January 2020.

I have successfully tested my old Contax camera using Ilford black and white film that I want to also use for the project. Thanks to my friend and fellow photographer, Lena Eivy, of Lena Eivy Photography and her dog for being lovely models! It was also a good test run to see how long the lab takes to process the film.

Confirmed: The old Contax 35mm camera works!

I plan to capture a “test” image using a digital camera so that I can provide a preview to each model and for sharing updates. I’ll save the magic of the film portraits for the show! This way I can save some bit of surprise for those who are able to participate in person first. The completed project will be shared online as a slideshow after the show.

The latest update is that I have found a location I can rent to use as studio space for the duration of this project.
I will be hosting the project portrait sessions once per month so I can keep making progress and keep it manageable alongside my business and family life. I’ve already spoken with a few of my brave, beautiful women and am delighted that some have signed up through the grapevine, believing in the project before I even have anything to show for it! Thank you all, truly, for helping to spread the word!

Warmly, Holli

Holiday Pop-Up Shop: Arts and Crafts Extravaganza!

UPDATE: I sadly cannot make this event to a conflicting family need. Please do attend and enjoy buying local anyway!
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Dusting off my art and craft fair shoes for this one day event to share local art nature photograhpy.

WHEN: Saturday, December 10 at 10 AM – 4 PM

WHERE: IntraSpace 3100 Airport Way S Set 24-108, Seattle, Washington 98134 {Behind Tully’s coffee}

WHAT: A holistic healing center is hosting this local holiday shop experience. There will be art, crafts, healing balms and more! I’ll be selling prints, postcards and a few small wood block prints (these are ready to hang on the wall, measuring 3×3 inches each). Hope to see you there! Free for all ages to enjoy.

 

Turning Art Into A Living

I realized something earlier this week: aside from my business networks and friends in West Seattle, not very many of my friends know what I’m doing with my photography these days. They may remember some art show stuff or the Tree Woman Project from last year. And, yes I have a few creative side projects on the back burner, which when they’re ready, I’ll share here on Holli with an i.

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But, what am I doing now? I’m a portrait photographer focusing on serving the business community in Seattle with marketing photos, head shots and those images in between.

I’ve been focusing on business photography since January 2015, because it uses my skills and experience in a unique way that allows me to work while the kids are in school or after they’re in bed. And, yes, I’ve got a dedicated website at NativeLightPhoto.com as well as on Facebook.

The reason for the shift in my focus is quite honestly, because I need to make a living with my art. I wasn’t successful doing the art fair circuit selling my art nature photography. I got to the point where the art was paying for all of the fees and costs for production to be out selling, but it was a lot of work away from my family for about $43 in profit. This new business is another branch to my experience where I need to stretch out and try to see if I can really make a living from my art, even if it’s applied to a format that is more of a service than an art. This is kind of like the painter who turns to graphic design to make a living while painting on the weekends for fun. Yes, some painters make a living from their art printing it on pillows and canvass, but some need a day job too. This is my “day job” photography business.

Tree Woman Project In Review

A hearty Thank You to everyone who attended the Arts In Nature Festival last weekend.

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©Holli with an i photography

It was such a fun experience to not only show off a project I’ve worked so hard on over the past 10 months, but to also give a little bit of the “Tree Woman” experience by braiding hair and making crowns. Here is the first family group to get their crowns on to enjoy the festival in fashion:

Family of nature lovers!
Family of nature lovers!

The cabin exhibit was a sensory experience: I created a soundtrack from recordings during hikes this summer to capture the sounds of the forest. We added branches from our friend’s tree farm on the Olympic Peninsula to the shelves and walls of the cabin which surprised people the most: the pleasant sound of the trees! The visual part I worked the longest on for ways to display the Tree Women in a way that had variety. From tiny wood mounted prints to large canvasses and extra large prints hung from clothes pins…here are a few phone photos:

Tree Woman Project exhibit
The entrance of the cabin.
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A braided flower crown.
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Canvass mounted portraits.

And a few photos of me with a couple of me and the Tree Women as well as with the Art Program manager, Yeggy.

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The project was a success thanks to my wonderful community. I am thankful for everyone who help me pursue my crazy idea. Each model was a friend or acquaintance. One of them I had only met through Facebook and the parent community. Another I met at a model session a month before. My Mom and cousin helped make crowns and braid hair on the second day of the festival, which was wonderful since it seems twice as busy as the day before. And, the supplies of birch branches, willow and hydrangeas were from my family and friend’s gardens. The tree branches for the cabin came from our friend’s tree farm.

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My favorite moment from the event itself was a conversation I had with a boy who I believe was about 8 years old. You see, I had imagined the show would strike a cord in the imaginations of women, but it really engaged many men and people of all ages.

Boy: “What is that smell that’s so good?”

Me: “That’s the smell of the trees.”

Boy: “But why do they smell so good?”

Me: “It might be the type of tree. (knowing they were Noble Fir “Christmas tree “branches)”

Boy: “No, I mean, why do they smell like that in there (cabin) but not out here (outside)?”

Me: “The tree smells stronger when you cut it. Out here the trees haven’t been cut. The branches in there have and that is why they smell so much stronger for us.”

Being in Seattle and surrounded by amazing programs that get city kids into nature, I never would have imagined giving a boy the first opportunity to see what a tree really smells like.

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I wish that every Tree Woman model could have attended, and it’s difficult to find another venue that could provide another such experience. The best I can do for now is share a slideshow of the exhibit photos with the sound track…enjoy!

Tree Women Project: You’re Invited

You’re Invited!

The debut of this personal project celebrating the stages of womanhood and the seasons of nature through our connection to trees.

Arts In Nature Festival this August 22nd & 23rd

Saturday 11am-9pm, Sunday 11am-6pm, tickets and more info here: Arts In Nature Festival.

Creative Personal Portrait Session

The fun thing about personal projects is that you get a chance to show off what you’re capable of beyond what you normally do. My Tree Woman Project inspired a friend to revisit her favorite portrait from college taken by a friend on film.

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We took inspiration from it, and had a lot of fun creating something new. Though we didn’t have a snowy forest to work with, we did find some amazing tree branches in the Kubota Gardens. Like the ying and yang of life, I think these two personalized portraits are lovely in their opposite tones, but complimentary in style.

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I also realized just how much  I enjoy a creative challenge and trying new things. So, if you have a photograph from your past and want to recreate it or something new, I’m game!

xo,

Holl

Shop Closing: Lessons From Etsy

I have been an Etsy fan since a year after it first began. It boasted 100,000 users/sellers in 2006. Back then, I had my first baby and we lived in a small one-bedroom apartment. I had found myself new to the Stay At Home Mom thing, and got crafty. Etsy was a place where I could sell my projects and buy unique items from fellow crafters around the US. And, I had high hopes that it would be a forum where I could help contribute to our family income.

Instead, I found myself without much time to put into the shop as parenthood took a lot more time and energy than I anticipated. So, the crafter in me took a long nap. Then, the creative part of me found an outlet in photography. I had my first art show in January 2012. My business license shows that I started in December 2011, but I wasn’t prepared to sell anything until January. The first art show was fun and gratifying. That lead me to open my second Etsy shop, and I even took a class on how to grow my shop through meeting people at art shows and growing my following.

It seemed promising, but I didn’t make my first Etsy sale until 9 months later, and it was to a neighbor (who is awesome, BTW)! That motivated me to keep going, and with each new art show, I found my sales on Etsy coming from strangers. In all, I’ve made just enough from those sales to cover the Etsy fees (they are small, but add up)…

Art2bToday, I find myself at that point where I need to close the shop. My creative energy is being focused on portraits, and I have to admit that while I will always love fine art nature photography, I can’t do all the things. I have my limits, and admitting that feels like failure, but I’m hoping to move forward with better focus on providing the same quality of my fine art photography in portraiture.

Here’s my past 6 months ledger to prove it (and I haven’t done the annual calculations to pay taxes on those sales yet):

ART SALES Date Fees/sales
Etsy 6/1/2015 -$6.00
Prolab (magnets) 5/8/2015 -23.07
Etsy 5/1/2015 $0.00
Etsy 4/1/2015 $0.00
Etsy 3/1/2015 $0.00
Etsy 2/1/2015 $0.73
Etsy 1/20/2015 SALE $20.00
Etsy 1/1/2015 -$7.76
Profit -$16.10

This experience has taught me that to make Etsy work, you have to work it. Etsy is a great vendor store-front for those who don’t want to manage e-commerce on their websites, but it’s like a giant store. No one will find you unless you stand there to greet and direct them. You’ve got to do the work.

My work is shifting, and that is why the Etsy shop is closing. I decided to make this fun for everyone, because I honestly do not want to have the 2 large boxes living in my garage for the next 25 years full of art, magnets and postcards. I want to see each item find a home.

Take a look and enjoy 50% off of EVERYTHING! I can’t discount shipping, but if I could, I would do that too. I’ll be officially closing the shop on July 10, 2015. Use coupon code: CLEAROUT when checking out to get the discount. And, thank you for following my art photography journey!

Onward,

Holli

A Touch of Grace: Classic Portraits

We live in an era where everyone needs a proper portrait. With social media becoming our first impression, it’s more important now than it ever was to put our best face forward. And, that’s why I have started telling people that by the time they enter the working world, they need a good head shot.

All that said, there’s a big divide about what a proper portrait or head shot should look like and how to do one. I think the best are those that help a person shine, and engage the viewer. And so, that’s why I love finding that connection in the eyes and keeping the set up simple, yet classic.

I was thrilled to capture my cousin’s portrait. She’s full of beauty from the heart. My hope is that I was able to capture the grace she has as a woman and her fun personality.

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And, she deserves praise for being so patient to see her photos, as I captured her portraits just before leaving for Bolivia!

Tree Woman Project: Moss

The beautiful thing about this project is how it appeals to women of all ages and stages of life. Remember the model who sat patiently for me while I worked through my studio lighting technique with my classmate, Alecia Lindsay?

Well, after telling her about my project, she offered to join the volunteer models! And, since I didn’t have a specific tree in mind, she braved the cold, rainy Seattle weather to adventure around the Duwamish Greenspace with me as we found pretty mossy places in the trees.

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This session was more of an adventure than classic beauty portrait of a tree and a pretty woman…

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I treated the session much like all the rest of the series, by creating her crown, and planning around her dress to pair with a green velvet jacket and a little glamorous makeup…

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This session inspired me to be more adventurous with my editing, and I explored some techniques to make them look like old school film prints…

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Much thanks to Jessica Marie Cantu for being an adventurous Tree Woman!

 

Bolivia Update: Almost There

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I can’t believe it’s almost time to purchase airplane tickets for this trip! The fundraising urgency has slowed down as we entered 2015, and I’m happy to report that I was able put all of my profits from 2014 into this trip, adding another $465. After trimming any excess spending (goodbye, Hulu subscription), I was able to add even more. And, I’ve been surprised and humbled by more family who have further supported me where I least expected it.

The plan moving forward is to put 50% of all my business profits toward the trip. I plan on borrowing the rest of the tuition from our family savings account and paying it back as fast as I can. I’m sending in the last of the tuition March 2nd!

Thank you all for inspiring me from the beginning with the launch of the Indiegogo campaign – that $550 start was the spark I needed to really reach for the chance to grow. I can hardly wait to share what I learn and show you another part of the world.

xo,

Holli