Thursday, November 18, 2010
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
If you had to sit down with a pencil and paper right now, and draw a picture of what it's like in your mind (the "desktop" of your thought generator), what would it look like? Can you imagine it? Is it neat and tidy? Is it a box? A cube? Is it round? Is it flat? Mushy? Rock? Paper? Swirling light? Smooth granite. Is it a place you can walk through? One way or another, when you shifting your thinking can be easy or it can be chaotic.
I just LOVE thinking about this stuff, because we all go through life together, but process the details so differently sometimes. Give the same 10 people the same life for a day and I guarantee there will be 10 different ways to approach it and 10 different to-do lists. What are the things we can do to get better results and feel more joy each day? It all starts in your head.
It became clear to me after hiring a professional organizer, Melanie, that EVEN when a pro sets up your space tailored specifically to the way YOU think and work, that just might be HALF of the battle to becoming organized. The other half is learning how to conduct.
Check this out. Imagine having an orchestra of talented, enthusiastic musicians, but a disorganized conductor without the music. Now imagine them trying to play. The potential for a song is there, but no one can hear it..NOT because the talent or desire isn't there, but because the conductor doesn't have rhythm and can't get in a flow. The conductor doesn't have the music. Melanie set me up with the tools I needed to make some great music (a.k.a.stress-free productivity) but needed to learn to play it better. Allan is coaching me to do that. The "conductor" of my inner thoughts liked to do most what it does naturally...exploring scattered corners.
I have kept my functionally organized for two years since Melanie blessed my office with her presence! What I have came to realize through that process is that my mental environment could use some organizing too! The conductor in me needed to learn to read music so it could play any music it yearned to play.
Does that make sense? Can you relate to what I'm describing? Life is a song! Learn to play it!In more concrete terms, I sought MindFit coaching (what Allan does) because:
A creative person who isn't afraid to fail because TRUE failure is....you guessed it....the failure to even TRY.
What aren't you trying that you really WANT to?
Good luck! I would love to hear from you!
Sunday, August 29, 2010
I don't think I've ever sent a text while I am photographing a wedding. But right after the ceremony of Casey & Lindsey Knopik yesterday at the Historical Orting Manor, I reached into my bag and sent this message to Katelyn, MUA extraordinare and owner of Salon Ish, who had been working with me that morning:
Me: "Katelyn, I'm not joking. I just officiated the wedding."
I have always aspired to be the kind of photographer...well, the kind of person, who, wants to have the inner focus and passion and quick thinking to do whatever any situation requires. I really do secretly like living on the edge; I enjoy the rush of the pressure of wedding photography, and I have been focusing my intention a lot lately on being "in the flow" with where my dream of traveling to speak on passion, enthusiasm, and purpose. (I even spoke on a live tele-class just this summer on those very topics.
But you wanna know went down at Lindsey & Casey's Wedding last Saturday, right??!!
Well, it was a combination of faith and teamwork mixed together with suspense and a wedding to save! The officiant made an honest mistake and believed the ceremony to begin at 7pm. But the rehearsal had begun at 7pm; the ceremony was at 5pm. So by 5:30, there was some genuine concern building when there was no sign of the officiant and no one able to locate his cell phone number. "I'll call the Mayor," Dave, the owner of Orting Manor said, "If she's home maybe she will be able to come right over and perform the ceremony." Casey and Lindsey hesitantly agreed, as if it somehow meant reluctantly accepting the reality that this marriage ISN'T going to happen right now the way they have envisioned for months.
So as everyone is putting thought into what in the world to do at this point, still holding onto hope that the officiant will pull up at any moment...and I think to myself...
"Should I tell them that I'm ordained? I mean, I could do this....No, that would be crazy. They'll be able to solve this. I don't want to be creating one problem (no photographer) to replace the prior (no officiant)."
But as the clock ticked away and I heard that at this point it was about 5:38pm, and I'd already photographed a few more portraits of the waiting bridesmaids and bride, I found myself standing with Casey and his father, Al (who was also the best man). I had changed my mind. This problem needed to be solved now and I believed 110% that I could solve it. "Casey. I'm ordained, and I can perform your ceremony." You CAN?" was Casey Knopik's response...and within MOMENTS, I Casey replied with the sound of complete confidence in his voice, "Well then I want you to do it. At least you KNOW us."
Immediately plans went into action; Brandon Hansen, groomsmen extraordinare, readily accepts the daunting task of photographing the ceremony of his best friend's wedding. Now. With pounds of professional Nikon camera equipment loaded onto his shoulders, replacing his own um, smaller, camera. I threw it in "P" and said a little prayer. Brandon had absolutely NO instruction from me, except for where on the lens to grasp in order to zoom in and out.
Secondly, Brian Dilks, groomsman/brother-in-law to Casey-extraordinare, had the forethought to successfully locate some pretty fitting marriage vows via his iphone, which was the last critical piece necessary to pull this off without a hitch...
...once everyone was assembled, I did something I never thought I'd do in a million years...I walked up the center aisle, tall and calm enough, and turned around to face the guests. I welcomed everyone, thanked them for coming, explained who I was, what the current situation is, and what the solution we came up with was. I was answered by a wave of applause and whoops of good will! It felt so amazing to feel the support in the air!
As a photographer, I've been a part of over 60 wedding ceremonies. But to serve as the individual that leads the joining of a husband and wife...what an incredible honor! (And it was SO fun to get to be the one who gestures, "All Rise" for the entrance of the bride)
A quiet moment of calm earlier in their wedding day....
On our way down the block to Orting's Summerfest in full swing, again, hours before the ceremony.
And proof that the reception went off without a hitch...and in case you were wondering, no, I hadn't planned ahead of time to coordinate my scarf that day with the color of the wedding. That was the first time I even WORE a scarf to shoot a wedding (already wearing 2 cameras around my neck and potentially risking fashion-inspired mild strangulation, I mentioned to the bridesmaids earlier in the day that the scarf was "experimental"). lol.
Monday, August 23, 2010
As I gear up for the approaching season of family and senior portraits this fall, I'm especially focused on keeping the enthusiasm up for the long haul. As a lot of you parents out there can attest, sometimes your energy wavers....for me, the last week before school starts again is a BUSY one. But does it have to be uncomfortable? No. Filled with Drama? Actually no. It's amazing how habitual the "back to school" scramble can feel. With the help of an awesome skype session with Allan Knight , I'm armed with a great technique to practice, and it's simple to do.
What are your Anchors?
Anchors are anything that help to remind you how to refocus and get grounded again. From an anchor-point, you can orient yourself to your passion and desire for your day, or your life. When I'm anchored, decisions are easy to make. Worries fall to the wayside as enthusiastic action steps in front and center. Using anchors instantly makes me feel GOOD again...it chases away the fear, shows me that the pressure I might feel at the moment is temporary and in most cases, a matter of perspective...what a relief it is to realize that!
My newest anchors are jewelry with wings; these anchors remind me to stay in the flow. A tealight next to my desk reminds me that I'm worth life's little pleasures (it also reminds me I'm almost out of tealights!).
Special people anchor us family, friends, mentors & coaches...and whether we can be with them physically or not, really is beside the point. It's the way these people make us feel and fill us up that is powerful.
Music is a potent anchor. I have specific playlists with everything from meditations, to music to pump me up, music to relax and go inward with...
Hobbies can be anchors! For me, any game that requires focus is good practice for me. Throwing darts, playing hacky sack, and even running on a treadmill without falling off have all been activities that make me feel good and bring me back to center.
How do you feel right now, and what are YOUR anchors? Could you be using them more effectively to stay grounded and enthusiastic about what lies ahead for you? Have you fallen out of practice of doing something that really brings you great pleasure? Or are you feeling nourished and bountiful because you regularly call on powerful anchors that keep you balanced?
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Monday, June 28, 2010
After almost a DECADE in the photography business, spending THOUSANDS of dollars and many MANY hours attending photography workshops and classes, and writing pages upon pages of soul-searchin' curriculum for you, I now officially announce:
I can't WAIT to share with aspiring, amateur, & professional photographers alike, what I have learned over these past 10 years. Ten years of conquering fears, celebrating successes, and learning more about myself through my relationship with photography than I ever would have imagined, back when I was "just a 24-year-old stay-at-home-mom, with a Olympus Z4040, and a baby on my hip."
Seats are limited to make it easier for everyone attending to ask specific, personal questions and for me to give specific, personal answers at the end of each segment. Call my Studio Line at 253.229.1818 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to register! Don't wait!
Monday, March 29, 2010
Like I said, they made a real impression on me!
Listen to what comes out of your mouth and how. Do you like how you sound? Do you want to change it? Simply noticing.....it can have a HUGE effect on your happiness and your enthusiasm for life. Have you noticed the same things, in yourself or people you live with, or at work? What do you think?
Friday, March 19, 2010
Today I just wanted to say that I am loving the Seth Godin blog post the other day about anxiety.
- Spend as much energy discovering yourself and your expression as you do discovering others and their expression. You have FAR MORE to learn inside about yourself than you may realize. You are fascinating. But you have much to learn. Don't we all?
This is me and the hubby in 1995 when I was enrolled in my first BW photography class in high school, when I "knew" I was going to become a clinical psychologist! Little did I know where I would be a decade and a half later....
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Congratulations to Chris & Britany, my cousin....who had their marriage formally blessed by the church on their 1st civil wedding anniversary, this past Saturday, March 13th in Kansas City, KS! Chris & Britany were married last year in the courthouse as Chris awaited a bone marrow transplant for leukemia...both of them have this old soul quality about them...I definitely see why each of them loves the other which is a wonderful side effect of pursuing my art...
Don't worry though...I will be booking weddings beyond 2012!!
Monday, March 15, 2010
It's scary to share that truth with all of you..... but maybe I should...I am beginning my new phase in my career of mentoring other people interested in photography and I won't lie to them.
Friday, March 12, 2010
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
100% of the proceeds from all of our donation-based sessions that day goes to help the children of Haiti. We raised over $1500.00 on Sunday!
And of course, this bench full of adorable wiggily grandkids brought to you by...Portraits For Haiti...Thank you SO MUCH to everyone involved...I'm so glad I got to capture these moments for you...
Back to editing all of these fabulous families' images!! Thank you everyone who made it out!
Saturday, February 20, 2010
My big aim is to create an environment where you feel Comfortable, I feel Comfortable, and we can PLAY! Whether you LOVE having your picture taken or LOATHE it...haha nothing makes a difference like having an experienced pro goofily guiding your way. I rely on gut instinct and a rock solid knowledge of equipment and technique based on nearly 10 years of business, but you may just be surprised at how much I play during your shoot...and how much of it isn't stiff and static...
I make each shoot as unique as possible by talking with you and getting a feel for who you are, and what you are about. I LOVE taking your ideas and making them real for you...but rest assured, if you have NO IDEA what you want to do some of my best creative work has occurred in sessions with NO destination in particular in mind...
If you are one of the lucky ones who will receive one of my special FACEBOOK cards tonight, high tail it over to my "Julie Watts Photo" fan page and let's see what we can create together!! With packages ranging from $300-$2000, everyone can afford to have a fun experience and fantastic images of who you are right now...
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
So much has happened so far this year... I am so glad! This can be a cold, dark, soggy time of the year, so I'm glad excitement is in the air. I have two international trips scheduled this year and some really open and fun brides and grooms that I'm excited to get to know better. First though, remember back in 2008 and Christine & Travis' Surprise Engagement "Portrait" Shoot?
I wanted to show you a few of my favorite images from Christine & Travis' WEDDING last September, because they are some of my favorite images ever...
It was a beautiful September Saturday in Puyallup, and Christine's dad just saw her as a bride for the first time. As he started to get a little emotionally overwhelmed, Christine responded by leading her pops in a few, deep breathes. It was absolutely beautiful to have watched this unfold. Yes, I live for getting the epic gorgeous shots of my brides and grooms, the kind of picture I wished I'd had of me as a bride, but THIS stuff below? These spontaneous moments of connection have grabbed my attention my whole life and this is one of those images I could look at over and over and not get bored of it.
There's so much expression in body language.
That's what you are really asking for when you ask me if I shoot a lot of candids, I think."Will there be spontaneous moments captured where our natural body language shows our deep connection?" That's what I hear when you ask me that.
Congratulations Christine & Travis! To see their slideshow, click here!