baby eddie

Eddie is the latest addition to Denise and Eddy’s family, and I was honored to capture him at one month. His parents love the outdoors, so we opted to have his session at Independence Grove Beach in Libertyville.

He was such a little trooper bearing the warm temperature, rap music from a nearby picnic and his perfect little owl hat. I had a blast shooting this new family, and I’m beyond excited to share some of my favorites from his session.

To see more of this little nugget, watch below or click here to view Eddie’s 1-month slideshow.

i live in the shutter speed

I sat at a table near the dance floor watching friends, family and the newlyweds shake it it to the Black Eyed Peas, laughing, smiling and getting lost in the evening. I couldn’t help but smile as I watched these people, many of whom were complete strangers to me. As a guest at the wedding, I admit, I was tempted to join them out on the dance floor but something was holding me back from jumping out there.

It was because I was capturing these moments in my mind. Moment watching. People watching. And then as if it was a natural reflex, I grabbed my Nikon and clicked my shutter moment after moment.

And in those moments, I realized why I love being a photographer. Not that I hadn’t thought about it before. It just was something hard to describe. For some reason it was so clear to me in the fuzzy, I had-one-to-many-reislings evening.

I love being a photographer because while everyone is living the moment, I am capturing it. Capturing it on my camera and in my mind. I am perserving a moment that may have gone unnoticed for ever. We all learn to live in the moment. I like to think I live in the shutter speed (cheesy, ya, ya, I know…). I live in the one nanosecond where I can capture the groom’s eyes welling up as his bride walks down the aisle or the half-second where the bride looks at her father to signal she will always be his little girl.  I look for the moment of the bride laughing with her friends and for grandma kissing her beloved husband. The moments between the first kiss, cake cutting and first dance. I capture the in-between.  The moments that people might not notice, but the ones that are the most amazing to see after the cake has been cut, the dance has been danced and the honeymoon is over.

Photographer or not, I am always viewing a wedding through my viewfinder and looking at things one shutter click at a time.

my list of goals :: july

Summer is officially here, and I can’t believe I’m writing my list of goals for July already. July reminds me of the mid-summer point…so as excited as I am for the upcoming month, I am hoping to make the long days last. While this post is a little late, it is better than not posting it. :)

Before I get into my July goals, I wanted to update you on my June goals.

– Network with other photographers and learn from their experiences/mistakes. I have been working on this a lot – especially by reading lots of forums online and staying in contact with all my J* Facebook people. I am hoping to have a meeting in the next few weeks with my cousin who is a wedding photography superstar.

– Photograph the bachelorette party I am hosting like a stylized shoot. Submit it for publication on wedding blogs. Well, I was avoiding answering this one because I did not achieve this completely. In my crazy, overambitious mind, I thought I could be the party host, rockstar bridesmaid, friend and event photographer. Let’s just say I took on too much. By the time I was ready to shoot my hor’ dourves spread, it was half eaten.  Live and learn.

– Get back into the gym. For real. It is beach season now….I made it there a few times. That is progress people.

– Use my speedlight more including as a fill flash on outdoor shoots. I started doing this more toward the end of the month, and I can see a huge difference in my work already. I will keep at this goal.

– Increase my number of Facebook likes on Brittany Bekas Photography. I am not exactly sure what the number was when I posted this, but I have had more likes over the last month. Now I just need to keep at it!

– Make 4 new recipes. At least two recipes need to include meat for the boyfriend. I’m not going to lie. I totally waited until about 8 days before the end of the month to do this. (Oh yes, procrastination.) But I successfully made a burrito pizza (con polllo) that I had ripped out of a magazine 2 years ago, three cheese steak sandwiches (thanks Food Network), spinach dip cups and mini peanut butter cupcakes (Pinterest). All were delicious.

Now here are some of my July goals:

– Learn to shut down my computer one hour for bed (i.e. stop bringing work into the bedroom!)

– Launch Brittany Bekas Boudoir. I have been shooting boudoir throughout June, but I want to get my boudoir site up and start booking more clients! Anyone interested?!

– Spend two afternoon/evenings shooting things that inspire me around Chicago. I get so caught up in weddings, events and portraits, I forget to sometimes just capture the day to day around me.

Chicago Photography, Chicago Theater

– Read two books – one non-fiction and one fiction.

– Create my new packaging for my clients. I’m thinking purple, black and white….just need to tie everything together!

Well, here is to achieving these goals in the next 21 days!