Thursday, September 18, 2008


About two years ago, a certain passion awoke inside of me. I suddenly had a real desire to capture life. I have always been extremely tuned into my surroundings; some might call it being hypersensitive. Nothing in my environment goes unnoticed. My mind is always on the prowl, soaking up new information and reading hidden motives, perceiving facial expressions, reacting to emotions, finding connections, seeking perspective, watching actions. All of this combined creates a certain environment, conveys a certain message, establishes a certain situation. To me, not capturing these instances in life means missing out. And I do not like to miss out.

My motto goes, there is always something to capture. And this image capture always portrays meaning. It is a message locked away in time, always there for future viewers. It is one of the best visual elements that we have in order to get snaps of reality. I like the idea of capturing "real." Posed has its place, but candid life is what we live and know most of the time.

Pictures speak. They say something. As a photographer, you inherently take a shot with your own interpretation in mind. It means something to self. Yet you have to be okay with the fact that your viewers may not always clearly see your vision for the image; your audience comes with hundreds of more translations. And that's ok. Ever sat through an Art History class? A photography critique? Then you know what I am saying.

I relish in the idea of communication through imagery, especially when that is paired with an audio experience. Musical sound, and even often the use of silence, adds a dramatic emotional factor that can change the entire meaning of your visual. Sound plays on emotion and sets a rhythm, a movement, and a mood.

The other day I was in downtown Peoria for lunch, and as luck would have it, I remembered to grab my camera. So I walked around and took some shots. The flooding along the river alarmed me; I guess I did not know how bad it was. The entire area down by Old Chicago and the parking garage is completely flooded. Anyway, I took several candid shots, and will share 3 with you for your own interpretation. Let me know what these images are saying to you.

NOTE: Kristi and I are changing our business from Two Peas in a Palette to Imagine Artists. Disregard the "Imagine" watermark as you view these images. I'll keep you posted on when our new blog and website will appear.

Love you all!


Sunday, September 07, 2008

The Noah & Oliver Project

My sister is in San Fransisco with her husband who is on business, so we had the pleasure of keeping her two oldest boys this weekend. Although, I count them equally lucky to be able to spend a few days with me. Mutual goodness. The charmed candidates include an 8-year old, Noah, and a 6-year old, Oliver.

I love kids. They remind me of the sheer simplicity and luxury of life back in the good ol' days when the biggest concerns were if you got an A on your spelling test or practiced your piano enough for the coming week's music lesson. Waking up early is natural, cookies after a school is a must, and running around barefoot outside isn't even a question.

Tonight I looked Noah in the eye and said with all sincerity, "I really hope you realize how easy you have it right now." We had been talking about school, so he naturally assumed I meant academics and started rattling off stories about class. Someday he'll know what I was talking about, but somehow, I think that the elderly look at me and think the same thing.

I told the 2 boys that I wanted to feature them, and so I took a picture of both of them and asked them a few questions. They wouldn't quite humor me with deep, philosophical answers to my heavy questions, but then, I have to remember that they aren't college professors and famous football players just yet.

Here is Noah.

He looks a bit rough and tough in this picture. But really, he has a heart as big as it can be. He readily shows affection, and is quick to give you a hug or hold your hand when you need it most. I don't say that lightly, as I am not naturally the affection-giving type, so I appreciate those who know how to give it in appropriate ways, and this kid has it down.

Noah is also very athletic. He has his dad's quick wit and story-telling abilities, and he has his mom's heart and fountain of knowledge.

Food: German Pancakes ("My mom makes those a lot.")
Sport(s): Basketball and Soccer ("Because I can't choose between those two.")
Color: Orange

Here is Oliver.

He is my boy of funny faces. Oliver lives up to his unique name. He is the independent adventure lad, always out searching for frogs, catching lightning bugs, and chasing rabbits. He has a tender heart and a precious smile. His face is animated, his eyes sparkle, and his speech is excited.

I asked him how someone would describe him. He seemed a little confused at first and he was frowning, saying, "I don't know."

But then he thought. After a time, he told me, "God's boy."

"Yeah, yeah," Noah piped in. "That's what I was going to say!"

Food: Cheeseburgers
Sport: Football
Color: Blue
Past Time: Game Cube "at home"


These boys are a lot of active fun. We have been go-carting, out for pizza, miniature golfing... the whole works. May the Lord bless their talents and budding personalities, and grow them into godly Lights that shine.

Love you all.