Friday, November 19, 2010

Beach Bums

Back in the later part of the summer I got a request from Debi (my step-mom) to take some new photos of her and my father. This was supposed to be their Mothers and Fathers day gift. We managed to schedule a weekend for the photos but I'm only just NOW finishing the editing. was hectic...

In any case, I'm very happy that I can now share them with everyone. So here's the scoop. 
My darling parents' dream has and ever will be to retire as beach bums. Today, they're closer than they've ever been before (they own a beach house...they're still working on the bum part). It was then only logical that we take these photos at the beach. I'm still finding sand in my camera bags. 

Debi is a fantastic model, she knows which way to look and when to smile and how much to Dad on the other hand...he kept on making alligator-neck faces. When I told Debi to put her leg in the air, my Dad did instead. Now I know why I'm such a smart-ass.
I did manage to get a few good photos of him though...just had to make sure he didn't realize I was taking them...

And then when Dad would goof off, Debi would start giggling. It honestly reminded me a little of Steven and I. After some coaxing (I think I offered beer) I get them both in order (at the same time) to get some good ones. 

Say it with me....AAAAAAaaaaawwwwwwww

You crazy, gray haired beach bums, I lurv you.

That's all for now, I'm caught up on photoshoots. I have a feeling I'll be sharing some various family photos soon though! 

Thanks for reading, have a fantastic weekend!

Liz DiNatale

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Back into the swing of things!

Wow, long time no see! Sorry, my fault. 

My life got a little hectic between my last post and September 25th. What happened you ask? Oh nothing, just got hitched...became a wifey...strapped on the ol' ball and chain (or is it an apron for us girls?)

I've gotten the question, "So, hows married life?" a lot lately. The  honest truth, in our case, it's exactly like unmarried life was. But unmarried life was good, so, married life is good! The wedding was phenomenal, everything I could have wanted and more. I would do a whole recap on the weekend here but this is not the time or the place. However if you'd like to read about our adventurous honeymoon, we blogged about it!

My intent of this post is very simple. Now that the wedding is over, and Steven has seen the dress...I can finally do a blog post about my bridal portraits!! *does a happy dance*

My last post was just the tip of the iceberg, there was so much more to share. To recap, these were taken in August at Second Empire in downtown Raleigh. Chrissy did such a fantastic job. I'm really trying to not be biased but these photos are just beautiful. 

The major challenge to photographing a wedding dress with details is that the details often get drowned out. For instance, my dress is ivory with gold stitching and beading. If you introduce too much light, to perhaps, get the correct color on skin, then you run the chance of overexposing the white dress and losing the delicate detailing. 

Did Chrissy do that? Nope!

I will always treasure these photos. I'll never get to wear that dress quite like that again.Granted, it was heavy, and incredibly difficult to swing dance in but...oh that train.
Good memories, good times. Thank you again Chrissy doing such an excellent job. If we are this good single-handedly, imagine the photos with two photographers! 

I'll leave you with one last photo and a promise that I'll be back much more often than I  have been in the last few months. Now that life has returned to normal and I'm  not planning the biggest party of my life to date, I can focus on my challenges and start posting my Photo Fridays again! One last thing, the holidays are around the corner, do you have your family portrait yet?! Check out our Lifestyle & Family Portraits packages for your holiday needs.

Seriously love this photo. 

As always, thanks for reading!

Liz DiNatale

Friday, August 20, 2010

Photo Friday: Photoshop Skills

This challenge went against my general approach to photography. I don't take a photo and think, "Man, this photo will be awesome once I edit the crap out of it in Photoshop!" No...I try and take a picture as close to perfect as possible so that I have to do as little work as possible, later. In other words, I didn't participate in this weeks challenge. I bet the submissions were pretty neat looking though, I'd take a gander. 

No worries though, I won't leave you (who is "you" anyways?) hanging. Last weekend, Chrissy and I had a fantastic photo shoot! The subject of the photo shoot? Little ol' me! We met at Second Empire in downtown Raleigh, NC, where I got all dolled up and smiled pretty for the camera. Second Empire is gorgeous, if you've never been there, you need to go. The food is expensive but the ambiance is beyond compare. We were very lucky that they let us use their dining rooms for free! There were SO many photography opportunities in that house but we ran out of time to capture them all. 

I wish I could post all of my favorites here for the world to see but unfortunately, Steven, my darling fiance, would be able to see them. I know we're very non traditional when it comes to this wedding but that's one aspect I'm following. He doesn't get to see me in the dress before the day of. But like I said, I won't leave you hanging. Chrissy captured the perfect teaser photo. 

If by chance you'd like to see more photos of my bridal portraits, you'll either have to wait a month, or email me, lis@oakcityphotograhync. 
I had so much fun getting all dolled up and doing photos. I'm looking forward to doing it again for the main performance! Time is flying by!

That's all I have for this Friday. I hope everyone has a spectacular weekend! Thanks for reading!
-Liz DiNatale

Friday, August 13, 2010

Photo Friday: Best Friend

Is it blatantly apparent that I'm a dog person when the first thing I think of when reading this weeks challenge is dogs? Best friend = dogs? Right? No? I think they fit the description pretty well. Someone you can yammer on to incessantly, someone who will never judge you, someone who will always love you, someone you can play fetch with.... 

The photo for this weeks submission so sorta fell into my lap. There I was, busily making my veil with my step-mum when she hijacked my camera and started taking photos. And then I hear "Aww, Liz come see this" and I get up from my toil to see Steven wrapped around Gunnar and Rhea on the living room floor. Awww, now that's a photo that screams "Best Friend". So I stole my camera back and started snapping. Of course Rhea woke up....

I think pups make the best spooners and heaters. That is until they want to get up and completely tussle you about.

This next weeks challenge is "Photoshop Skills" GREAT! I have none.....

On SOR news, tomorrow I'm getting all dolled up and Chrissy will be joining me at Second Empire in downtown Raleigh for my bridal portraits! Yay! I'm afraid I won't be able to post teaser photos of the shoot though...considering Steven can see this blog. Well, I'll see what I can do. ;-)

As always thanks for reading, don't forget to VOTE, I'm number 240. Thanks!

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, July 30, 2010

Photo Friday: Sky High

I didn't actually participate in this weeks competition. The only photo I could think of using was one I already had of Masi and I'm trying to not always submit photos of my dogs now, but I thought maybe you all would enjoy seeing it anyways!

If I had thought of it I should have brought my camera to the concert I went to on Wednesday. It was the Slightly Stoopid show with Cypress Hill and Collie Buddz, and the tour was called Legalize it 2010. What do you think they meant? In any case, the crowd, the majority at least, high. If you breathed deep enough you'd probably have been as well. The most memorable parts about the crowd, besides the plums of smoke surrounding us, was this incredibly intoxicated, glistening, overweight man who nearly took out our entire row and this stoner in front of me who I nearly backhanded for trying to untie a girls dress as she walked by him. I'm thinking box seats next time. 

Allow me to get back to the point of this post - the photo challenge. The photo I wanted to submit is one I've had around for a couple years. I call it, Stoner'll see why in a minute....

I get a giggle whenever I see this photo. 

We're only a couple weeks away from my bridal portraits with Chrissy. I'm really looking forward to the experience, it will be a lot of fun. Other than that, I'll keep posting my weekly Photo Fridays!

As always, thanks for reading!
Liz DiNatale

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Photo Friday: Summer Fun

I had the perfect opportunity to capture some real summertime fun for this challenge. And yes, I actually did it! My friend Kate and I visiting my S-Mom at my parent's beach house on the weekend of July 10th and it proved to be the perfect setting for some summertime fun!

It was a spectacular weekend of gabbing, food, drinking and more gabbing. We did some very important research for the upcoming bachelorete weekend. I also managed to make pretty good headway on my terrible bike tanlines, Yay!

But I digress. For this Photo Friday submission, I thought a picture of something pertaining to the beach would be perfect! What is the first thing you think of when you think of the summer? The Beach! Thus, I came up with my submission...

Carolina Beach was never my favorite beach (that would be Oak Island) but it is certainly growing on me. There is so much more to do there than one originally realizes. So much history! Besides the Fort that's just down the road, you have old time staples like Britt's Donut's that's been there since the 30's! We discovered a very tasty Mexican restaurant on the boardwalk too! I still think that the shining beacon of fun would have to be the Fat Pelican. I love that place. I'd stay there forever if they only served food. ::sigh::  The one thing Carolina Beach is lacking as far as I can tell is an excellent hole in the wall seafood place. So for that, we took the ferry over to Southport and ate at Fishy Fishy. Terrible name...awesome food! Mmmm....ok now I want to go back.

Ah the summer sure is fun...but I'll be honest. I really miss Spring and Fall.

Thanks for reading!

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, July 9, 2010

Photo Friday: Bloom

Yay! I can take a picture of any bloomin' thing! Blooming Cantaloupe, Squash, Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Daisies um...pretty tree thing that's blooming (I still have no idea what it's called) - so many options! And I wasn't lazy this time! I faced the heat and snapped a few bloomin' photos! *pats self on back*

I really should have been taking photos all spring and summer long. I've had all sorts of random things blooming. 

What's your favorite bloom? Mine would definitely have to be Bleeding Hearts. There is something so beautifully sad and dramatic about them. The plant is so picky, but the blossoms are so worth it. After Bleeding Hearts, I'd say Magnolia tree blossoms because they smell so incredible. That was one of my favorite times at NC State - when the Magnolia trees would blossom. They are all over campus, and they are HUGE. But lucky for me and my shortness, they have low hanging branches, so I could pick a blossom and carry is with me for the day. I remember one day I came home with a blossom and shoved it in Steven's face and said "Here, smell! Yummy!" at which point he began sneezing...allergies...forgot about those...whoops. 

Back to the point at hand. So I'm walking around my sweltering back yard yesterday, taking photos of the bloomin' things. Those consist of the Cantaloupe, Squash, Cucumbers, Daisies and the blooming tree thing. This year we replaced the random lava rock stone thing behind the house with a Daisy garden. For about 2 months it looks like huge weeds but then it exploded with blossoms and now it's completely taking over that area. Good thing they're annuals. The photo I chose was from the Daisy garden. I was able to sneak a couple photos of a bee in action! I've always wanted one of those shots!

He kinda looks like he's dancing doesn't he. Don't forget to VOTE! Votes are only taken until Sunday! 

Shades of Red news...Unfortunately I won't be doing a photo shoot of my parents this weekend. Communication got lost somewhere and the Army decided to steal my Dad for the weekend. Lame. So unless we book a new client before my bridal portraits (August), you'll have to be satisfied with my ramblings about bees and blossoms and other Photo Friday topics. I hope that's alright, if not, feel free to book a photo shoot. ;-) 

Everyone stay cool in the hot hot hot weather! I'm off to the beach!

Thanks for reading!

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, July 2, 2010

July 2nd Photo Friday: Motionless

I skipped last week's post. The Photo Challenge was "Standing out" and I had no clue or motivation. I didn't want to let anyone down two weeks in a row though, so, I made it happen for this Photo Friday challenge. I was still lazy/not motivated so I used a photo I had taken previously. I think it fits the challenge pretty well though!

Here is my Motionless:

As you can see from the photo, Masi is intend on staring at...nothing. There's not anything out there but leaves. But OH, she's gonna get it! When I see this photo, I think of Elmer Fudd "ssshhh, be vewy vewy quiet, I'm hunting wabbits!" I can guarantee you Masi wasn't moving a muscle when I took this photo, she was very motionless, obsession will do that to you.

I need to stop using old photos of my dogs for this challenge. That's just lazy of me. The next challenge word is Blooming! Which is perfect considering I have several blooming things.

Recent news for Shades of Red, we shipped off our photos of the pups! The "Endo-Bendo" package may only say 100 photos, but they definitely got more around 160. Oh well, those pups were just too photogenic I guess. You can check them all out here: Shades of Red Photography - Best Friends. Next up, I'm finishing up the edits on Leslie and Jesse's wedding and have started posting the photos to the website, but they are the only ones with a password for now. Once I am finished, I will e-mail the location and password to everyone who signed up at the wedding. Next weekend I am doing a photo shoot for my S-Mom and Dad at Carolina Beach. This is a belated Mother and Fathers day gift. I'm very excited! I'm planning on getting some fantastic photos of them on their new Lastly (for now) in August, Chrissy will be doing my Bridal Portraits! YAY!

I think that's it for now. Don't forget to vote HERE, my number is 303.

Thanks for reading!

Liz DiNatale

Friday, June 18, 2010

June 11th Photo Friday: Heavy

When I first began visualizing this challenge, I pictured something in nature, like a water droplet about to fall off a leaf because its weight had exceeded waters' surface tension properties. Or a big fat ripe tomato pulling the tomato plant down by its weight. Something to that effect. 

However, as the week went on, I noticed that my cat's new favorite place to lay was smooshed in between the free-weights (that are sitting idle) in our living room. I couldn't pass this up. It was too cute. I had an image in my head of her saying, "These weights are too Heavy for me, so I'll just lay next to them". She's a lazy kitty, so this makes sense that she would say that. If she could talk. Also, I think if she could talk she'd probably yell at me for constantly bringing new dogs home that think she's an interesting, interactive, toy. Sorry, Sweety. that I'm looking at the photo and the expression in her face...I think that's exactly what she's saying.What do you think?

I feel like her gaze is scolding me.*shudder* So this is my Photo Friday: Heavy submission. Please don't forget to VOTE. I know I always do! Yep, I forget to vote for myself even. Winning is kind of unlikely I think. 

Chrissy and I have been hard at working processing and editing our recent photo shoot's  photos. I think we'll end up with about 160 photos for them. It has been tough narrowing it down to only a few photos. Those pups were so photogenic. 

We've decided to keep with tradition and showcase a few of our favorites in a "teaser-photo" blog post. With out further ado, I give you Austin:

Ok, join with me...AAAAaaaaAaAAWWWWWW. I nearly stole this puppy. No I don't need a puppy, but...but...oh he was so cute. 

He had a case of the "I wants" he wanted to eat my lens, my ring, my hair...and both of these balls. 

The other pups were impressively patient with him. 

Well...generally speaking I suppose. 

That brings us to the next cute little fuzzball, Andre. I asked the owners if he was named after Andre the Giant, since his personality fit that perfectly. We are told he spends his days perched on the bench at the front of the house keeping an eye on the neighborhood.

We asked Jason and Tina their favorites parts of each dog so we could be sure to focus or at least capture those features. Austin, they didn't have a clear answer, he's just a big ball of cute. Ava, her cute brown nose! Andre, his smile, as they put it. Andre smiles with all his teeth...

I don't mean to play favorites but if I had to pick one, I'd have to say Ava. She was so beautiful. I'm a softy for Dobermans, and especially the lighter ones. Believe it or not, Jason and Tina actually adopted Ava from the shelter. I like this photo that Chrissy took. It really captures her regal personality.

She is a gorgeous example of a dog.

I've always felt that the soul of a dog can be seen through their eyes. Her eyes made me melt. 

These 3 were quite the pack. We loved working with them and with Jason and Tina. We hope to be able to photograph them again. 

Thank you, Jason and Tina for the opportunity to get to know your pups, it was a real pleasure! 

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, June 11, 2010

June 4th Photo Friday!

ACK! I haven't posted in 2 weeks...Sorry. Though,  honestly, I have NO idea who I'm apologizing to. Does anyone actually read this? Haha.

Just in case I do have a few followers, I appologize for not posting for the last couple weeks. One week was the Burn Race weekend and the next we escaped to the beach! I had no time to post! Enough excuses though.

June 4ths Photo Friday challenge word was Aqua. Perfect! I went to the beach that weekend. What? I actually had to take a photo of the blue, blue water? Oh, well, never mind. Lucky for me a week or so ago, we took the dogs to the park and I took my camera. I love getting photos of the dogs when they're swimming. They are so happy then. I really think they were meant to be ducks.

Here is my challenge photo for this weeks Photo Friday.

Dog shaking-off-to-dry photos are the best! What's particularly awesome about this photo in my opinion is that Masi is this wet, because she actually swam! Yeah, I know she's been swimming since last year. But it took me 3 years and some very wet shorts to teach her how to swim! and now she does it on her own! without further encouragement! If you knew Masi when we first got her, you'd be as excited about this as I am. Good girl, Masi.

While I didn't submit this for my challenge photo, this is my new favorite photo of Rhea.

It just makes me wanna smoosh her wet face in my arms and kiss her.

On another note. Shades of Red Photography had a photo session this week! We had the pleasure of meeting Ava (Doberman), Andre (Schipperke and Chihuahua mix) and Austin (puppy Weimaraner). I have a fondness for Dobermans, I think they are so regal and beautiful. Ava was such a gentle, patient girl. And Austin...lets just say he was exactly what I needed for my puppy fix. He LOVED the cameras and when I say that, I mean he loved to chew on them. Their people, Jason and Tina were great to work with and they have some of the nicest pups. We should have a few photos ready for a teaser post in the next week, so tune back to see those!

One last note. To all those waiting on Jesse and Leslie's photos. I have about 250 more photos to edit/process until they will be available online. I'm hoping to have them done by the end of the month!

Thanks for reading, don't forget to VOTE for my photo and have a great weekend!

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, May 21, 2010

Jesse & Leslie say "I Do" and Photo Friday: Symbols

I, Liz, come from a small town in Upstate NY called, Volney. Volney is rural county with rolling hills and farmland; it is pretty secluded. Without many neighbors of my own age, I mainly played with my older brother, James since I was also home schooled. Poor kid, he put up with a lot. Then one year my Aunt and Uncle moved to Volney and stayed on my grandparents farm, which was next door, while they found themselves a new home. Their children were about the same age as my siblings and I. Their youngest boy, Jesse, was only a couple months older than me. During the time that they lived there I spent almost every waking "play" hour with my cousins, especially Jesse.

I lived in Volney from when I was around 5 till I was 12. My back yard was about 240 combined acres between my grandparents and great grandparents land. I remember so many trips in the woods with my cousins. Jesse, do you remember the "Iron Wood" walking sticks? Or swimming in the beaver pond? Or finding that strangely serene meadow before continuing into the "deep woods".

Fast forward 12 years, Jesse took the plunge on May 6th and brought a new, lovely woman into our family. I had the pleasure of providing the photography of their nuptials as my gift to them. Their wedding came with a bit of a struggle. First their reserved wedding site was flooded with 5 ft of water from the rains in Kentucky. Then the chair rentals fell through. Then we lost the wedding music! But true to form, they pulled through admirably. In the end, Jesse and Leslie accomplished what they intended - they were married.

Leslie was such a beautiful bride.

And not an ounce of bridezilla in her! The first time she met me was the day before the wedding and she welcomed me with a smile and light, sarcastic, banter - my kinda girl. Even with everything that went on, she held her composure and even joked about it. Bravo, Leslie.

The ceremony was short and sweet; Jesse and Leslie stood in front of a lovely waterfall with their close friends and family. Leslie's dress was a gorgeous champagne color with a chapel train that had a lovely french bustle for the reception. After the ceremony, it was picture time! I had to have some fun with the groom and the groomsmen ( I've known most of them since I was 5). I love non-traditional poses. They always make people laugh and genuinely smile. One of my favorites for the groom and his groomsmen is the "Captain" pose.

I stole in on an intimate moment between Leslie and Jesse and captured this. I feel like their eyes are saying "finally!" They are so good together.

I think this photos says, "Finally!" for very different reasons. ;-)

Someone once told me that it appears that I find it hard to post a photo shoot without including a picture of a dog. Maybe they're right. Meet Gage, their Husky. What a cuddle bug! He was such a well behaved dog, and so sweet. Jesse and Leslie requested he be in a few of the wedding photos - this is my favorite.

I know this is a lot of "teasers" but I couldn't help myself. I was so happy to be a part of their special day and to be able to capture their love and commitment to each other. I'll leave you with one last photo. This is also the photo I used for May14th Photo Friday challenge: Symbols. I think the image speaks for itself.

Congratulations Leslie & Jesse! Welcome to the family Leslie, I think you'll fit right in. Thank you two for letting me a part of your day and I can't wait to give you the remainder of your photos!

For those who would like an e-mail notification of when Jesse and Leslie's photos will be available online, please e-mail me at

As always, thanks for reading!

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, May 14, 2010

May 7th Photo Friday Challenge: The Coast

This Photo Friday challenge doesn't leave much up to interpretation. The Coast...I wonder what will be involved in these photos? Perhaps a sea? Some sand? Waves and the such? I was thinking of photographing a coasting bike but decided to go with the no-brainer. Is that lazy of me?

Last year sometime in the summer, I can't remember the exact month anymore. We (myself, Steven and our friends) visited the North Carolina coast at Carolina Beach. Lucky for us, there was a hurricane off the coast (note sarcasm). The rip tide was so strong, the lifeguards would not let you out past your knees. That is, unless you had a surfboard or the like. One of the couples we traveled with did indeed have a surfboard! See...

In the midst of the watery oppression, the surfboard meant freedom. I think after I took this photo we proceeded to build the biggest sand castle ever (I might be exaggerating). Complete with a 5 ft pit that Matt (surfboard guy) dug with a random shovel left on the beach (a real shovel). Then we had fun jump kicking the sand castle into the 5 ft pit so that no one would accidentally kill themselves.

On another note! Sorry for my absence last week! I was in Lexington, Kentucky photographing my cousin's beautiful wedding! Tune back in the next couple of days for a sneak peek at some of my favorite shots!

Thanks for reading!
-Liz DiNatale

Friday, April 30, 2010

April 23rd Photo Friday Challenge: Sunshine

Sunshine....on my SHOULDERS....makes me HAPPYYYYY....

Who doesn't love the sun warming your back on a cool spring day? That has to be one of my favorite feelings. Or the way the sun beams pierce a storm cloud after a good rain. The sun does some great things, and damaging things, but lets not focus on those.

For this Photo Friday challenge I thought I'd take a photo of the sun in action. Doing what it does best, feeding things that feed us. I have a small garden in my back yard, it consists of tomatoes, peppers, squash, carrots, cantaloupe, cucumbers and CORN. Yep, corn, in a residential neighborhood. I know it may be odd, but I love some corn and the first plant I thought of when I thought of wanting a garden was corn.  I was giddy when the first corn seedlings broke through the tough North Carolina clay. Now they're about 6-10 inches tall. I digress. Here's my photo.

Just look at that sun in action! Grow corn GROW!!!

Please vote for me, go to the Photo Friday website and find entry 354! Thanks.
This weeks challenge word is Sexy. There's no getting around this one.
As always, thanks for reading!

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, April 23, 2010

April 16th Photo Friday: Wheels

I just counted, I have around 34 wheels at my disposal to take photos of at my house. That's a lot of wheels. So with such ample opportunity to take photos of wheels, the real challenge for this Photo Friday was to make the photo interesting. So I decided to play with lighting. Unfortunately I have no lighting equipment but I do have a couple very powerful bike lights.

So again, on the 11th hour, I pull out my dusty camera (yes dusty, I haven't had any photo shoots in a while! I'm going to be rusty for my cousins wedding) the dirty single speed and the pristine Seca 700 bike light. It was really neat to play with the lighting. To see the different emotions I could get out of an inanimate object just with shadows and light. I'm totally an amateur at shadows and light but it was fun to experiment. Might have to play with this some more!

After a bunch of photos I had several options and finally decided on this.

It kinda feels like it's coming at you doesn't it. This is the rear wheel on my fiance's Selma Single Speed. She was a good model, I may have to work with her again.

This week's challenge work is Sunshine...and it's supposed to rain this weekend. Come on! Maybe the sun will peak through the clouds and give me an awesome sunbeam photo. One can only hope. Check back next week to see what I can come up with!

Thanks for reading!


Friday, April 16, 2010

April 9th Photo Friday: Overcast

Yeah...I've got nothing. In the week for this submission, it wasn't rainy or an appropriate cloudiness. Go figure. We've had a very wet and icky fall, winter and early spring and now the skies dry up? Thanks. I think nature has a vendetta against our grass seed and my garden. This is what I think of your vendetta nature!!

Oh yes, I did it, I made Gunnar stick his tongue out at you! He's so supportive of my rants.

So...since I don't have a photo to submit I skipped this submission (yes on purpose, no I didn't forget...really). I figured I'd bore everyone with photos of the "kids". Nope, not even recent photos! I'm so cruel.

Cleo says she's bored of this and is going to go back to sleeping...

Wake me if there's a bug I need to chase, k thanx.

On a side note, completely unrelated, this spring we've been surrounded by carpenter bees. Those big fat scary sounding bees that are about as harmless as flies? These guys. They love our house and fence, it's apparently very tasty. Lucky we don't have wood siding, only wood fascia boards and a wood fence. But I digress. Masi...


loves to chase bugs (we think she used to be a cat...she cleans herself too). There was one summer a couple years back when Bond Park was swarming with June Bugs and oh boy did she go nuts! It was hilarious. She'd run around chomping at all of them. Occasionally, catching one and then freaking out b/c they wouldn't stop buzzing in her mouth. I think that day we played "smack the June Bug" with the chuck-it. Which got old, so we left early. Wow, that was a tangent. 

Back to the point, the carpenter bees. Well, they're  about the same size as a June Bug and make about the same amount of noise. To Masi, they're ripe for the killing. Whenever we're outside she'll start running and leaping at, from what we can tell, nothing at all. Until we hear bbbzzzZZZZZzzzz as the bee flies by us. I'm so very curious to see what will happen if she ever catches one, and I really hope I have my camera. Rhea would like to see this too. She's already laughing so hard, her tongue won't stay in her mouth! And her ears have gone cockeyed! 

I'm just hot...and you're weird.

On a more tragic note. A friend of our family's has recently left us. You'll be missed Alex. You were one of the many adopted children of our family, and there is a tangible void now that you're gone. I'll remember how you saved me from certain boredom at Carolina Beach and the flowers for my graduation. I don't have any fitting photo of you to share to end this post so I'll share a photo of Carolina Beach. R.I.P. Alex. 

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, April 9, 2010

March 2nd Photo Friday: Blurred

For this Photo Friday challenge I wanted to take an action shot of the pups or at least something in motion for a motion blur. Unfortunately, I did my usual and procrastinated until the 11th hour (literally) and had to use a photo I had taken previously. I had 3 photos I narrowed it down to. Each had a lovely DOF but in the end I really just liked this photo of my brother.

What I like about this photo is for one thing the great bokeh effect (blurred background with in focus foreground) and how sweet and charming it is. I think it goes pretty far to capture his personality. He has no idea I'm using a photo of him for this weeks challenge, hope he doesn't mind. This was taken on Easter Sunday outside our step-sister-in-law's house. I'm pretty sure he asked me to stop taking photos after this...

Surpwise James! Thanks for being a(n) (un)willing subject in my photo challenge.

This week's challange is Overcast...geee...I wonder what I'll take a photo of.....

Thanks for reading!
Oh! don't forget to VOTE!

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, April 2, 2010

March 26th Photo Friday Challenge: Pleasure

Pop quiz, what is the first thing you think of when you think of photography + too. I couldn't photograph that...I don't think blogger would let me post it. I am at a loss for this challenge word. I had the image of what I felt the perfect portrait of pleasure to be...and it was stuck in my minds eye, not letting any other creative vision take seed.

So in an effort to not fail and to actually post something, I dug into my photography stash. Something in there must portray pleasure. I found the perfect photo!

It's carnal, it's seductive, it has a feeling of impending pleasure, its....crap that's not my photography. This would be a photo that Chrissy took for Steven and I for our engagement photos. I'm pretty sure submitting this photo as my own work goes against my moral code. Well crap, but hey, there's got to be something else.

And there was. In 2009 Chrissy and I had the pleasure (hey, key word!) of meeting Toya and Jerry, soon to be Owino. We were recommended to them through a friend of a friend and were able to take their engagement photos as well as their wedding photography. These two were so intimate, it was obvious they were deeply in love. Typically when we photograph couples, we have to ask them to kiss, we had to ask these guys to stop!

I took this photo on their engagement photo shoot. This was in the courtyard of the Raleigh courthouse. I love how it appears as if I'm sneaking in on them to capture this intimate moment. It amazes me that this was nearly a year ago. In May they'll be celebrating their one year anniversary! Toya and Jerry Owino...good people.

Enough of my rambling, here's the photo I submitted.

If you liked this photo (or even if you didn't) please vote for me! Go to Photo Friday: Pleasure my submission is titled SOR_Pleasure, it is number 271.

As always, thanks for reading!

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, March 26, 2010

March 19th Photo Friday: Children

Everyone say it with me....F.A.I.L....yep...I did it again...I completely forgot about my submission until I got the e-mail for this weeks Photo Friday challenge (which by the way is Pleasure...that should be an interesting shoot...) ::sigh:: I'm losing my memory in my old age.

But, lucky for me (and maybe for you?) there's no deadline to my own blog post! Yay! Procrastination wins again! Ok, back to business...

I  had so many options for this challenge (that's really why it irritates me so much that I forgot.) So many fantastic photos of so many wonderful children. Plus there's my furry children. There is one girl who I photographed that always stands out in my  mind though. And it's because of these...

Big blue eyes full of joy and wonderment. She's going to break some hearts with those big blue eyes. I had the pleasure of photographing this lovely young lady and her family for their holiday photos in 2009 (hopefully again for 2010?) That was my first photo shoot without my partner (in crime) and was a great learning experience for me (I really like the parenthesis today don't I?) Plus I got to meet some of the most photogenic kids ever. Anywho...I digress. This isn't actually the photo I would have submitted for Photo Friday...

This is:

The reason I would have used this photo over the previous one is I feel this photo really captures what we all remember about being a child. The simple joy of a backyard swing set, a cool crisp autumn day, and being able to wear a butterfly on our shirts! come on, it doesn't get better than that. 

Makes me want to go make a leaf maze at my Grandpa and Grandma's house in NY again. Those were the days...

Well thanks for looking, don't bother going to the Photo Friday website to vote for my photo, because you won't find it. I swear, I'll post the next challenge photo on time...really...should be an interesting shoot...

Thanks for reading!

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, March 19, 2010

March 12th's Photo Friday Challenge: Nightlife

I went into this challenge thinking, "Sweet, nightlife, I can photograph nightlife," yeah...maybe if I had one. My nightlife (especially on the weekdays) consists of walking or running the dogs, eating in front of the TV, working on the house or wedding stuff and generally lounging. All of this isn't so bad really, but doesn't make for incredibly exciting photos. Then I thought on it some more, let's face it...I live in Suburbia. Cary, North Carolina is a great, quiet, safe place to live and I love it, but it doesn't lend well to a nightlife (I guess we have our local watering holes but still...this isn't a big city type of atmosphere). But who says that a nightlife can't be tranquil and picturesque. Well I say it can be! and with that, here is my submission...

This is a photo from my front door. This is the nightlife of Cary. Calm streets with street lights, beautifully manicured lawns (my neighbors, not mine) and an abundance of landscaping lights (yeah I don't know what's up with them either). Not much going on, but that's perfectly fine with me. I can still cause mayhem if I want to...just means it's easier to get caught.

This Friday's challenge word is children. I think I have a few (a LOT) of options for that one! I'm trying to talk Chrissy into submitting one too...maybe some encouragement from our audience will do it?

Thanks for reading! Tune back next week for another Photo Friday!

-Liz DiNatale

Friday, March 12, 2010

March 5th Photo Friday

I'm on a roll! But only barely. I think I made the submission deadline by 30 mins last night. Good thing my pups are good sports and will let me take their photo for random reasons, in random locations, at random times. The challenge word for March 5th's Photo Friday was "Cleanliness." How exactly do you take a photo of cleanliness? I thought a photo of the cat cleaning herself would work great, but that didn't pan out (apparently she likes to mainly clean her butt...........) and then I had this awesome photo in my mind of a very soaked Rhea, like when we give her a bath. However we didn't bathe the pups in the week of the what is a girl to do?! I can tell you! Coax your loyal subject upstairs (sometimes cookies help) and force them to enter the Shower of Doom and sit there patiently. You will automatically be greeted by a very sad and forlorn face, which was perfect for the picture I was going for.

The end result was a slightly damp Rhea (from the rain) with a sad, and confused (maybe bored) look on her face, laying in the Shower of Doom. I call it "I loath the Cleanliness." She's such a good sport. If you like my submission go to Photo Friday and vote for me! My submission is titled SOR_Clean. Ok enough yammering, I give you my submission!

Thanks for reading!

-Liz DiNatale