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Travelogue | Night Lights in Glacier

When we were in Glacier National Park over New Years, we spent a lot of time outside at night. I can’t say why exactly, but something about the peaceful quiet and cold lured us onto the empty roads much more so than during the day. Most nights we were in the park, we wandered up and down Going to the Sun Road for miles, doubling back along the shore of Lake McDonald. I’ve been out in the park at night many times during the summer, and always felt a tinge of worry that I might be murdered at any second by a bear or cougar. Strangely, that was not so in the winter dark. The night wrapped us like a blanket, and the snow stifled all sound.

I took these photographs on the road. My first, rather amateur attempt at light painting. Any guesses as to what we used as our paintbrush?

A blue light bounds toward the viewer

Christmas color light painting

Light curves toward the photographer

Rainbow light across the photograph

Red light bounces across the image

Photograph of red swaths of light

Give up? Our painter was a dog, and the light was an LED-strobe on his collar that changed colors over time. I had Justin run him back and forth while I lay in the snow, hand-holding my 5d for 30-second exposures and trying not to breathe. They’re not works of art, but they’re definitely interesting!

Travelogue | New Years in Glacier National Park

Glacier Park holds a special place in my heart. Justin and I have spent one long, blissful week in his family’s cabin there each of the ten summers since we started dating. It’s where we were engaged in 2006 and, in 2008, we were married just outside the park in the tiny town of Polebridge.

This year almost was the first year we weren’t able to honor our traditional summer Glacier visit. The week before our scheduled trip, we were trumped by a family member with much greater leverage. Rather than stay in Seattle, we took our time off at another family member’s vacation home in Jackson Hole. (I know, not exactly terrible, right? But not the same, either!)

We just had to set foot in the Glacier cabin before 2009 ended! A few phone calls, and an extra day or two off around the holidays, and we were headed to the Park accompanied by our good friends. Somehow, the weather cooperated perfectly and the passes were clear. We arrived on New Year’s Eve to usher in 2010 in utter solitude on the banks of Lake McDonald.

We brought some snowshoes, a handful of good books, and a few bottles of wine.  It was a half mile hike on the closed Going to the Sun road to the car and from the cabin. There was nothing resembling civilization for miles.


Lake McDonald in Glacier National photographed from Apgar Village. Photograph taken January 2010.

Rachel and Micah hold hands and snowshoe through a white winter in Glacier National ParkSnow flipping up off of Micah

Portrait photograph of Rachel making a funny face with snow in the background

A nature photograph of a small, lone pinecone resting in the snowSmall pinecones hang from a tree

Blurry bokeh makes a dreamy photograph of pine needles

Rachel and Micah embrace on the shores of Lake McDonaldRachel and Micah embrace on the shores of Lake McDonald

Rachel and Micah making faces for the cameraRachel and Micah laughing

The couple reclines in the snow for a portrait together

Abstract photograph of lichen on a pine tree during a Glacier National Park winter

Mount Stanton in Glacier National Park on Lake McDonald, viewed from our cabinLake McDonald from Apgar looking toward Logan Pass

On Time & Travel (Not Time Travel)

Today I got back into shooting after a few weeks off, and I’m glad to be reminded how much I love it (in spite of cold, unwelcome rain). Just three more weeks and we’ll be in Hawaii, celebrating my transition from wage slave to full time photographer. Then, it’s off to Vegas with me for the Wedding and Portrait Photographers’ International conference and a Wedding Bee blogger meet-up.

Did I mention I love traveling? Between 2009 and 2010 I visited more than 10 states, and I’m adding a good three into the mix in early 2010. We rang in the New Year in snowy solitude in Glacier National Park, and I just got back from a week in Boston.

I love to meet new people while on the road– so if you want to get together, either for a shoot or just to say hi– while I’m in Maui or Vegas, just drop me a line.

Travel may be one of my favorite things, but it does take away from the time I should spend blogging, posting lovely photos from December’s family, maternity, and boudoir sessions. I have a backlog of absolutely fabulous photos to share, and I’ll be digging into those during the coming week. For now, enjoy this cute candid teaser from a family photo session on one of this winter’s coldest days…

Photograph from family portrait session with Darcy, Lee, and Anton in Seattle

My Trash the Dress Shoot with Kate McElwee

Guess what? Yours truly is featured over at Kate McElwee’s blog right now! This September, on our one year wedding anniversary, (glee!) I broke my wedding gown out of retirement and took it down to Georgetown for a TTD shoot with my awesome husband and the always-effervescent Kate McElwee. It was SO. MUCH. FUN! Kate has all the details up on her blog, and a whole bunch of pics, so go check it out!


I’d loooove to take some ladies out for adventurous TTD sessions (whether or not the dress actually ends up “trashed”– mine didn’t at all). It’s definitely not ideal TTD weather in Seattle right now (brr!) but as soon as we get back into warmer weather– or if I meet a bride who wants to trash in the freezing rain/snow– I’m gonna make some kickass images!

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